I love to search for new recipes and explore alternative baking methods or ingredients. While my primary source is wonderful online blogs, I enjoy browsing real paper cook and baking books (find the sites and books that most inspire me here).
One of the first “healthy” cookbooks I had, was “The art of eating well” from the Hemsley sisters. It is a very inspiring book that follows a healthy, but not a dogmatic diet, and has delicious recipes. One of their most famous ones is a recipe for black bean brownies. Black beans replace the flour and make these brownies a gluten-free treat. And they are also low in sugar. While I was a little skeptical first, I finally baked some this weekend.
So … is it the real brownie deal? No. Is it a tasty alternative if you are graving some fudgy, chocolaty treat but don’t want to sacrifice your health goals? Yes, definitely.
Depending on your taste buds I recommend adjusting the sugar amount to your liking. I tried two versions. One with a lower sugar amount for my friend’s birthday (also a health nut) and she loved them. But we agreed that they might not be entirely satisfying for people who are used to more sugary treats. So I made another batch for this week’s baking project and added some more maple syrup to cater to my co-workers’ palate.
I will definitely add these to my repertoire of healthy snacks as they are so simple to make and allow you to satisfy your brownie-gravings more often. And for people who can’t (or don’t want to) eat gluten, it’s a great way to have a brownie-like experience!
Looking for other gluten-free treats? Check out this sugar-free banana bread, a healthier version of pecan pie, or this gluten-free bread. Craving even more chocolate? Try this beetroot chocolate cake.
Black bean brownies
A gluten-free and low-sugar treat to satisfy those brownie-cravings.
- 480g cooked black beans, drained
- 4 organic free-range eggs
- 230g butter or coconut oil, melted
- 150-250ml maple syrup
- 85g unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
- 130g chopped walnuts
- Step 1 Preheat the oven to 170°C (330°F).
- Step 2 Line a square baking dish (24x20cm) with parchment paper. You can also double the recipe to make this in a standard baking tray.
- Step 3 Place the beans, eggs, cooled butter, maple syrup, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and salt into a food processor or high-speed blender and then blend until smooth.
- Step 4 Using a spoon, stir in most of the chopped walnuts, reserving a handful.
- Step 5 Pour the brownie batter into the baking dish.
- Step 6 Sprinkle the remaining walnuts on top and bake for 40 minutes. The brownie should feel firm, and its surface should be cracked.
- Step 7 Remove from the oven and let cool completely before cutting into squares. You can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days.