The Best Black Bean Brownies – Ever!

I love black beans – they are excellent for our digestion, and are high in a kind of fiber called resistant starch – which helps to make us feel fuller and can travel all the way through our digestive tract without being digested. Resistant starch has been shown to help promote weight loss.  Recent research has linked consumption of beans to reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and several types of cancer.  The American Diabetes Association, the American Heart Association, and the American Cancer Society–all recommend legumes as a key food group for preventing disease and optimizing health.  Beans also contain antioxidants, and flavinoids.

Another food that is heart healthy is dark chocolate.  Studies have shown that daily consumption of a small amount of dark chocolate can lower your risk of heart attack and stroke by over 30%.  Also high in magnesium, read I Heart Dark Chocolate to learn more health benefits of dark chocolate.

So dark chocolate black bean brownies are a much healthier way to get your chocolate fix than traditional brownies.  But when I was researching black bean brownies a while back, I tried a few recipes that I found online – and there was something missing – they were too mushy and dense.

So this recipe fixed the mushiness by adding coconut flour (high in fiber, gluten free) and xantham gum (helpful in gluten free baking). And these brownies have one other benefit – they contains chia seeds – which are high in omega 3s, and also an excellent source of fiber.

I used to use canned black beans to make this, but now I make my black beans from scratch – read why.

THE BEST Dark Chocolate Black Bean Brownies!

Servings: 20 small squares

Description:

These dark chocolate brownies are a great alternative to traditional brownies – if you didn’t know it, you wouldn’t guess that the main ingredient are black beans.  In addition, the chia seeds add fiber and Omega 3s, the coconut flour is gluten-free and a high fiber food.  And dark chocolate is a superfood with antioxidants.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of prepared black beans (or a 15 ounce can, drained and rinsed)
  • ½ cup of organic unsalted butter (or coconut oil for a dairy-free version)
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips (ideally 60% cacao) Use semi-sweet if you can’t find dark.
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cacao powder (or unsweetened cocoa if you can’t find cacao)
  • 2/3 cup organic granulated sugar (or coconut/palm sugar)
  • 2 organic eggs
  • ⅓ cup Agave Nectar
  • 2 Tablespoons chia seed (soaked in 4 Tablespoons of water)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon xanthan gum (you can make it without this, it will be more fudgy)
  • ¼ cup coconut flour (if you can not find coconut flour substitute another flour, such as Teff, Quinoa or another gluten free flour – or leave out the flour for a softer, more fudge-like brownie).
  • Optional: Additional chocolate chips for the top, and/or powder sugar for dusting

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease with butter or coconut oil an 8×8″ or 9×9” pan and set aside.

Puree the black beans in a food processor or blender (a powerful one like a Vitamix).  Add a little water if needed to puree.  Melt butter and dark chocolate chips on a double boiler or carefully in microwave (do not overheat).  Allow to cool slightly.  Crack eggs into a glass measuring cup, and whisk, then add sugar and agave nectar, and soaked chia seed – whisk all together well with a fork.  Put the melted butter & chocolate, pureed black beans and all other ingredients into the food processor or mixer and mix until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.  Optional – top with additional dark chocolate chips (mini chips work best).

Bake approximately 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool before slicing and serving.  Store in refrigerator or air-tight container.  Enjoy!

11 Responses so far.

  1. michael says:

    I have been making black brownie recipes for a while now, always using the internet as a guide. though all of them have been “ok” none of them have been perfect. today I started with the above recipe..but made some changes. I completely omitted the chia seeds, as no matter how many times I try to incorporate them, they leave that telltale chia bitterness.and subbed almond flour for the coconut flour. the biggest changes were that i subbed 1/2 cup coconut oil for the butter. and separated the eggs. I kept with 2eggs total, but separated out the yolks from the white. I added the yolks to the bean mix and processed in the food processor. and whipped the egg whites with a mixer with some cream of tartar to soft peaks. I then folded the egg whites into the completed bean batter, and transferred to the baking pan. I believe that this (with the addition of xantham gum) led me to a consistency that I really enjoy. so many bean brownie recipes leave you with a crumbly sandy texture.the egg whites seemed to fluff the mixture a bit, while the xantham gum helped glue it all together.

    • Hi Michael,
      Thanks for the comments and the recipe suggestions – I will try your egg method next time! I have never had bitterness issues with chia seeds in this however.

  2. michael says:

    oh, and I didnt use agave at all…just the 2/3 cup sugar, which I used light brown. not white.

  3. [...] table look really festive.  Or instead of a cake, brownies are always a hit at parties, try these Best Black Bean Brownies, they are gluten free and delicious (and yes, made with black [...]

  4. Travis says:

    It says it’s dairy-free at the top of the page, but the last time I checked, butter is dairy. ;)

    • Hi Travis,
      Thanks for catching that – I added “use coconut oil for a dairy free version” to the ingredients list. I have used coconut oil in this recipe before, and it turns out nice, but it does taste a little “coconutty.” And my daughter is not a fan, so we tend to use the non-dairy butter version.
      Cheers!

  5. Darron Gadsby says:

    Fiber foods are really necessary for the digestive health. It keeps us from getting colon polyps and colon cancers.:’.;’

    With appreciation http://www.foodsupplementdigest.com/calcium-deficiency-symptoms/

  6. [...] to add cacao to smoothies (try this Choco Banana Smoothie), I also make raw energy bars with it, dark chocolate black bean brownies, and you could even make homemade chocolate almond milk, just add cacao and your favorite natural [...]

  7. Andrea says:

    This was amazing! I substitued coconut oil for the butter, and added more coconut oil and cacao in place of the chocolate chips (which were out of our budget). I cut out the agave totaly, as I am used to a less sweet diet, as well as the xanthan gum.

    I ate these cold with coconut milk on top.

    This is truely the “best black bean brownie”!

  8. [...] to add cacao to smoothies (try this Choco Banana Smoothie), I also make raw energy bars with it, dark chocolate black bean brownies, and you could even make homemade chocolate almond milk, just add cacao and your favorite natural [...]