I know these sound a little weird, but trust me, they are THE. BEST. Because black beans have a neutral flavor they essentially function as the flour in this recipe. I’ve started eating them every day with my green breakfast smoothie.
Yes, I eat brownies every day. Don’t judge.
Besides the semi-sweet chocolate chips, these brownies have no processed sugar and are instead sweetened with dates, stevia, and a banana. Black beans are high in protein; an excellent source of folate, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, and thiamin; and they are rich in dietary fiber. Unsweetened cocoa powder also provides protein, fiber, phosphorous, magnesium, and manganese as well as riboflavin, zinc, iron, potassium, and copper.
So, YEAH, I eat brownies every day.
Many of the black bean brownies recipes I’ve found use oil; however, I prefer to use water and don’t really notice a difference in texture. These brownies are more fudgey than cakie, which I like, but if you prefer cakie just add less water. I recommend using your own soaked, cooked, and drained black beans rather than canned beans to avoid excess water. (I used canned beans recently while visiting my in-laws down South and it resulted in a soupy batter. This was unfortunate as they were already skeptical enough about trying my crazy vegan brownies with beans so I was disappointed I made a batch that didn’t live up to their usual mouthwatering goodness. Arg! Regrets!!) If you refuse to heed my wise advice, then at least fully drain the liquid from the cans and maybe ease up on the amount of water you add. Also, be sure the cans say “no added salt.”
While I personally don’t want to mess with perfection, these would certainly also be good with some nuts like pecans and walnuts. Enjoy!!
4 cups black beans
15 medjool dates
1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1 cup unsweetened cocoa or carob powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup water
1 cup semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips* (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a glass baking dish with parchment paper.
2. Put all the ingredients except the chocolate chips into a food processor. Pulse until creamy.
3. Spread the batter into pan and sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly on top.
4. Cook for 35-45 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean(-ish) after inserting. Don’t cook more than 50 minutes even if your knife comes out with batter. Just remove pan from stove and allow it to cool completely. Store in the fridge.
* Chocolate IS vegan! After all, cocoa comes from a bean. However, many lower quality chocolate companies add non-vegan ingredients like milk and milk fat. Higher quality dark chocolate chips are often vegan even if they don’t announce it on the package. They’ll be made with pure, simple ingredients: cocoa, cocoa butter, lecithin, sugar, and sometimes vanilla. So just check the back and read the ingredients. Here’s some more info from Food Empowerment Project on vegan chocolate that’s also slavery-free.