Friday, October 12, 2012

Gluten Free Black Bean Brownies

I found this recipe on Eat Good 4 Life and had to try it. However I don't know where their nutrition information came from as I could not get the same numbers in any recipe calculator I used (however if I used Raw Sugar instead of normal sugar it did not calculate ANY additional sugar so something was a little off and maybe that's what happened to that nutritional information). 

The other thing I loved about these brownies is that they use black beans - which help regulate blood sugar because of their high protein and fiber content. So these shouldn't cause as much of a spike in blood sugar! Something we all can live with ;). Black beans have more benefits you can read about here.

I have made a few changes and included some ingredients you can add in as well... and thanks to my son who saw me writing this post, I now have a batch of brownies in the oven that I can smell and they are almost done baking... I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

 Black Bean Brownies

 First you'll need 2 cans of black beans (you won't use quite all the beans, but close!)
 Make sure to rinse them off really well - this gets rid of some of the starches that cause flatulence. You can forget I just said flatulence if you wish.
 Once they're good and rinsed, measure 2 and 1/2 cups of black beans and place them in a blender or food processor.
 Obviously I used a food processor...
 You'll also need 4 eggs, toss them in to the food processor as well.
 I do typically crack my eggs into a separate dish to make sure I don't get egg shell in my food... I'm still not great at cracking eggs. My egg cracking role model came from a reunion I went to where someone (don't remember who as I was like 10 years old) was cracking one egg in each hand simultaneously. I still only crack one egg at a time using both hands...
 You'll also need 1/2 tsp baking powder.
1/3 cup EACH of Dark Baking Cocoa and regular baking cocoa... If you don't have dark baking cocoa you can just use 2/3 cup of regular baking cocoa, but adding dark to it is great. If you want you can add 2/3 cup dark baking cocoa - my husband isn't a dark chocolate fan so add half and half to appease him!
 Toss them into the blender or food processor as well.
 You'll also need 2/3 cup sugar.
 and 1/4 cup oil. You can use 1/4 cup olive oil (I use light olive oil so it wasn't in the taste of the brownie, but if you like olive oil flavor in brownies feel free to use extra virgin.
 Alternatively you can skip the olive oil and add coconut oil instead - same amount - 1/4 cup
 Also you'll need 1 tsp vanilla extract... I write the measuring spoon amounts on the measuring spoons if they rub off. Can I say this is one of my biggest pet peeves in kitchen gadgets - if you're going to make a measuring cup or spoon the amount it measure should last as long as the cup/spoon itself!
 Toss everything into the food processor (or blender)
 Blend for 1-2 minutes, scrape down the sides of the bowl.
 Then blend 1-2 minutes more. It should have a total blending time of 3-4 minutes. You want the beans to pretty much be a complete puree. There can be little pieces, but you want it to be pretty much smooth.
 You'll want a pan (8x8 or equivalent - I used a more elongated pan) with parchment paper lining it. You can spray the parchment paper with oil if you want.
 Pour the brownie mixture into the pan.
 Top with 1/2-1 cup chocolate chips.
 Then you can leave only the chocolate chips on it, or top with nuts (like almond slices, pecans or walnuts - we really liked the pecans) or shredded coconut.
 However, if topping with coconut, add only during the last 10 minutes of cooking, or it will be this brown/burnt... Just sayin.
Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes.
 Let cool completely before cutting.
 If you want you can lift the parchment paper out of the pan with the brownies on it - it helps cut the brownies!
 Enjoy with a glass of milk!

 Variations (or add-ins)
You may add any of the following variations if you want to. I wouldn't mix them all in by any means... however I did try pear and pumpkin together and it was delicious!

1 cup of fresh pears, cored.
 1 cup pumpkin
 1 cup frozen spinach, thawed and all the extra juices squeezed out (left me with about 1/3 cup)
I also tried a bit of the batter mixed with peanut butter (I would only add 1/2-2/3 cup peanut butter to the batter.) My taste tester (husband) didn't like it as much - he said it was too savory, so if you add peanut butter you may want to add a bit more sugar.

You can also try adding shredded zucchini to the batter (you'd want to drain some excess water off the zucchini before adding it.)

Of course you can also add chocolate chips, nuts, coconut, etc to the batter as well. ;). They would also be amazing with a drizzle of caramel sauce!

Nutrition info includes 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips, 1/2 cup pecans and olive oil.


  1. Thanks for posting this!! I'm writing it down pronto!! I loved them! And I felt like I was only minorly cheating!! :-)

  2. Sounds good! Just wondering though, did you use the 1 tsp of instant coffee or did you omit that? I wonder if that is a crucial ingredient.

    1. I did omit the coffee - it is not a crucial ingredient, however I do wonder if it does help mask the black bean flavor as those with more refined palates tend to notice them... Although I have to say that I took some to my parents (brother and sister & her spouse and children were visiting) and almost the whole pan got eaten ;).

  3. I just made these last night and they turned out so good! I followed the recipe on the original sight you got your recipe from with a few changes: 1/3 cup dark cocoa powder, coconut oil, 2 tsp real vanilla to make up for no coffee. I also mixed some dark chocolate chips in the batter too. They were so yummy!

    1. I was surprised at how yummy they were when I first made them as well! I'm glad you enjoyed them (and the chocolate chips in the batter would be yummy ;)


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