Thursday 5 March 2020

Recipe Recommendation: Black Bean Brownies (The Delicious Healthy Option) #GlutenFree

Recipe Rec - Black Bean Brownies (The Delicious Healthy Option)

Recipe Recommendation: Black Bean Brownies 

(The Delicious Healthy Option) #GlutenFree

So I have been making a conscious effort to improve my diet, because, frankly I used to eat far too much crap. One of the big things I am doing is reducing the amount of refined sugar I eat.

Now I have to admit, this was really hard for the first week. They are right that sugar is more addictive than cocaine - however, it seems withdrawal doesn't last that long πŸ˜‚. I've been doing this since New Year and I find that I don't really crave the sweet things that often anymore.

However, I cannot live without chocolate. Sorry - never going to happen. And also, research says that dark chocolate has some great properties, so I have moved on to having some dark chocolate every day - the 72% or 85%, which are supposed to have all the good stuff in them.

I miss cake, though, so have been looking for alternatives. Now I have a new Instant Pot (which I will talk about more in later posts) and while looking for recipes for that I came across a website called iFOODreal run by a lovely lady called Olena Osipov which has some fabulous recipes on it. She also has a great Youtube channel.

One of these recipes is Black Bean Brownies - yes that is brownies made from black beans.

Good news for my gluten intolerant friends too - this recipe is gluten free.

Now I know what you're thinking, probably the same as I did - black beans? Really?

Well I made this recipe the other day and everyone loves it. They are delicious.

Word of warning - this is a very dark chocolate recipe, so if you're not into dark chocolate, this will not be for you. All the sweetness comes from fruit and there is no added refined sugar, so the brownies are dense, squidgy and wonderful with a cup of tea or coffee. They also get better with time IMHO, so if you can leave some overnight they improve even more.

If you want to see the whole recipe, and all the advice Olena gives, than check out her original post:
Black Bean Brownies.

I'm going to include the ingredients here because all the measurements are in North American style on iFOODreal, so here are the UK/Metric equivalents.


  • 400g tin of Black Beans
  • 2 large eggs
  • 155g unsweetened apple sauce (I looked up 1/2 cup and is said 125g, but I had a small 155g jar and it just about filled my 1/2 cup measure, so that's what I'm going with) - I think next time I will use the over-ripe banana idea though, because it's easier to get.
  • 15 small or 10-12 Medjool dates (I used the small ones)
  • the original recipe has 2 tbsp brewed coffee, but I threw in a tsp of instant coffee for a similar effect, since I didn't have brewed coffee on hand.
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 50g cacao or cocoa powder (cacao is better for you, but is not as easy to get)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 100g bag of extra dark chocolate chips (I used Dr Oetkers 72% choc chips) - 50g for inside, 50g for the top (this may not be quite the right amounts, but it made it easy for meπŸ˜‚).


  • A stick blender works well to blend the batter - my food processor is not overly great and I don't have a normal blender, so I used the stick one and it came out brilliantly.
  • Oven temp conversion (350F) - 180C or Gas Mark 4
  • I didn't have an 8x8 brownie tin so I used a 20cm/8inch sponge tin instead and just cut the brownies into cake style slices.
  • Cutting it into 16 might make the pieces look small, but they aren't - trust me - each piece is just enough.
  • I checked my brownies after 25min not 30 and they were perfect so I didn't use the final 5min of cooking time. It will depend on your oven.
  • Do not, and I repeat, do not skip the baking parchment lining. Because these don't use flour, they are not as robust as brownies can be, so getting them out of the tin was ... well ... entertaining. Without the baking paper I would have been sunk.
πŸ’–Yummy brownies that have things in them that are actually good for us - win/win! Don't forget to check out Olena's other delicious recipes and tips for hearty, healthy eating.πŸ’–

Do you have any favourite recipes that taste decadent, but are, in fact, surprisingly healthy? I would love to hear what they are.

Banner BG Photo by Alison Marras on Unsplash

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