Editor's note: This post was written by Melanie Flinn for FitFluential and published with permission by Skinny Mom.
There's nothing better than a moist, chewy, chocolaty brownie. Pair that with a tall glass of cold milk and dreams really can come true. While delicious, brownies aren't always considered the healthiest. Using black beans from S&W Beans, we've found a way to make brownies healthier without sacrificing great taste!
I know what you're thinking. Black beans in brownies? Why can't we just leave dessert food alone. I know, because I thought the same thing a while ago. It just sounded… strange. However, I realized after a lot of recipe reading and experimentation, that this idea is quite brilliant.
Honestly, why not increase the fiber and potassium by adding delicious black beans, in this case from S&W. Did you know that eating 4 servings of beans a week equals a 14 percent lower risk of heart disease? Eating beans can significantly lower your blood pressure and improve brain function in older adults. If that's not enough, canned beans are one of the least expensive forms of protein!
I wouldn't share these with you if they actually tasted like beans – because you came here for brownies right? Not that we don't looooooove black beans (honestly it's my favorite type of bean), because you know we could just eat these straight out of the can and enjoy them thoroughly. Honestly, when I was experimenting with this recipe, I was certain that they would taste "healthy", but they taste just as decadent as regular brownies. I can't get over the end result and just how simple these are to make.
Everything goes into the food processor, then you just add the chocolate chips and transfer the batter to the baking pan. You don't even have to make a mess measuring flour because there IS NO flour! You heard that right. The base of this brownie is just black beans and unsweetened cocoa powder. With the magic of some honey, eggs and other baking ingredients, the batter transforms into a delicious baked good.
Just wait until you try them; you will be amazed that they are grain- and gluten-free! Now, let me point out that these should still count as dessert — they are not sugar-free, but do have less fat because of the fact that they aren't made with a stick of butter like most traditional brownie recipes. Thanks to the beans!
When you stock your pantry with canned black beans from S&W, remember that this amazing food is more versatile than you think. Not only are canned black beans perfect for salads, tacos, nachos, soups, and slow cooker dishes like chili, but the beans add a dense, moist texture to these chocolaty fudgey brownies.
Not only that, but you will love having a delicious brownie recipe that is a great alternative dessert for gluten-free or grain-free friends and family.
I asked my family to guess the secret ingredient and here are their answers: hummus (because I have 4 giant containers of hummus in my refrigerator right now), coconut (no they taste nothing like coconut, but my son knows I put it in everything), soy beans (I don't know where that guess came from) and their last guess was that there is NO secret ingredient.
I ended up telling the kids there was no secret ingredient, they laughed and didn't question it. Why would they? These taste like the real deal. If you can't get past the idea of beans in your brownies, just hope that someone secretively makes them for you and doesn't tell you until you've eaten them. I promise you'll never know!
Incorporating healthy foods, like beans, into otherwise not-as-healthy foods is fun. Give it a try and let us know what you think!
DARK CHOCOLATE BLACK BEAN BROWNIES
- 1 can S&W® low-sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup honey
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 extra large eggs
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spray a 8x8 baking dish in cooking spray, then line the dish with parchment paper, letting the paper hang over the sides of the dish, and spray again with cooking spray (this will allow you to lift the entire cooked product out and cut into squares with ease).
- In the bowl of a food processor, add drained black beans, cocoa powder, honey, oil, vanilla extract, baking powder and baking soda. Blend for ~10-15 seconds or until smooth.
- Take off lid, add two eggs, replace lid and process for 5-10 more seconds or until incorporated.
- Stir in 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Transfer batter to prepared baking dish. Bake for 30-35 minutes (brownies will look a little undercooked after removing from oven, but they firm up as they cool).
- Remove dish to a wire rack and let sit for ~30 minutes.
- When ready to cut, lift brownies out using the parchment paper.
- Cut into squares and enjoy!
>> If you liked this recipe, you might also like these recipes from Skinny Mom using beans!