Published Feb 07, 2023
This post may include affiliate links. Thank you for your support.
These healthy chickpea brownies are fudgy, moist and so easy to whip up in your food processor with just 8 simple ingredients. They’re vegan, flourless, gluten-free and oil-free.
I love sneaking in unexpected nutrient-dense ingredients into my dessert recipes and since my black bean brownies are such a hit I thought I’d take a stab at making chickpea brownies. After some trial and error I landed on this recipe I’m sharing today, which is seriously SO good! My mouth is watering just thinking about them.
These brownies are so fudgy and moist… they kind of remind me of cosmic brownies, especially with the chocolate ganache topping! Not only are they packed with some extra protein from the chickpeas, but there are no eggs, flour or oil and they come together so quickly right in your food processor.
Why You’ll Love These Brownies
- The chickpeas add some protein, but you can’t taste them, promise!
- The chocolate ganache topping is chef’s kiss!
- Flourless, vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free + oil-free.
- Made entirely in your food processor or blender with only 8 simple ingredients.
Using Beans to Replace Flour
Chickpeas (and other beans) are such a versatile ingredient. They’re used in salads (this greek chickpea salad is so good!), to make dips like hummus and even in desserts! In many dessert recipes the beans actually act as a flour substitute, which is the case in these brownies.
I love sneaking beans into my dessert recipes. Not only do they add extra protein and fiber, but you really can’t taste them, promise!
- chickpeas – acts as a flour substitute and adds some protein and fiber. I used canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans) drained and rinsed for ease.
- maple syrup – the perfect natural sweetener for these brownies.
- cashew butter – adds some protein, healthy fat and moisture and acts as a substitute for any oil.
- cocoa powder – you can’t have chocolaty brownies without cocoa powder! Make sure you’re using unsweetened cocoa powder. Cacao powder works as well. I really like Navitas organic cacao powder.
- unsweetened cashew milk – I used cashew milk to go along with the cashew butter, but almond milk is another fave of mine. Just make sure to use unsweetened milk!
- vanilla extract – a flavor enhancer.
- sea salt – to bring all the flavors together.
- chocolate chips – I recommend Enjoy Life dark chocolate chips which are allergen-friendly or Lily’s chocolate chips because they are lower in sugar and calories.
- chocolate ganache topping – a simple chocolate topping made by melting chocolate chips and whisking it with a little non-dairy milk.
How to Make
Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 8×8-inch baking dish with cooking spray or line it with parchment paper. Place chickpeas, maple syrup, cashew butter, cocoa powder, milk, vanilla and salt in the bowl of a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Remove the blade and gently stir in your chocolate chips. Transfer brownie batter to the prepared pan. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until brownies are set in the center and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.
While brownies are cooling, make ganache topping by adding chocolate chips to a microwave-safe bowl. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between each. It shouldn’t take more than 60 seconds or so to fully melt the chocolate.
Once the chocolate is melted, add milk to the bowl and stir until well combined. Pour chocolate over the cooled brownies and spread to cover. As the brownies sit, the chocolate topping will start to harden a bit. You can put them in the fridge to speed up the process. Slice into squares and enjoy!
Substitutions & Notes
- Chickpeas: If you don’t have chickpeas, you could use another white bean like cannellini beans or great northern beans.
- Maple syrup: You could use honey, agave nectar, date syrup or even monk fruit maple syrup as a substitute. Keep in mind that each of these sweeteners has a different flavor profile and sweetness level, so it may alter the end taste of these brownies.
- Cashew butter: Any nut butter will work with this recipe! Almond butter or peanut butter would be my next choice. If you have a nut allergy you can use sunflower seed butter or even tahini.
- Milk: You can use any plant-based milk you have on hand, but I recommend using unsweetened to not add any extra sugar to this recipe. Also, if you don’t need these brownies to be vegan you can use dairy milk.
- Chocolate chips: I like mixing in chocolate chips and adding them on top of the ganache for extra chocolatey goodness, but you can always skip them, use a chopped chocolate bar or swap them with another mix-in like walnuts or almonds.
How to Serve
- Nut butter – you can’t go wrong with a drizzle of nut butter to top!
- Coconut whip – these brownies would be delicious with a dollop of coconut whipped cream on top!
- Ice cream – brownies + ice cream = a match made in heaven. These brownies would be delicious warmed in the microwave and served with my banana ice cream, chocolate banana ice cream or avocado ice cream.
- Caramel sauce – how delicious would my date caramel sauce would be drizzled over one of these brownies?! Yum!
- Yogurt – want to eat a brownie for breakfast? Crumble it on top of a yogurt bowl with a sprinkle of granola (this 5-ingredient grain free granola is delish!) and fresh berries. Like a breakfast brownie sundae… so yummy!
- Fruit – serve these brownies with some fresh berries. They add a pop of color and such good flavor!
How to Store Leftovers
Store brownies in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. For longer storage, I recommend freezing. Store in a freezer-safe, airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. I like to use my Stasher bags or these glass containers for easy storage.
More Brownie Recipes
- Oat Flour Brownies
- Sweet Potato Brownies
- Black Bean Brownies
- Pecan Pie Brownies
- Protein Brownies
- 5-Ingredient No Bake Brownies
- Peanut Butter Hummus Brownies
- Pumpkin Brownies
- Zucchini Brownies
More Chickpea Recipes
- Healthy S’mores Dip
- Healthy Protein Cookie Dough
- Air Fryer Chickpeas (5 Ways)
- Barley Salad with Chickpeas and Pears
- Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl
- Mashed Avocado Bowl
- Buddha Bowl
- Jennifer Aniston Salad
- Beet Hummus
- Creamy Hummus
Be sure to check out all of the chickpea recipes as well as the full collection of dessert recipes on EBF!
- 1 15 oz can chickpeas drained and rinsed
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- ⅓ cup cashew butter
- 3 Tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cashew or almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs, plus more for topping
Chocolate Ganache Topping
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
- ⅛ cup non-dairy milk almond, oat or coconut milk work
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 8×8-inch baking pan.
- Place chickpeas, maple syrup, cashew butter, cocoa powder, milk, vanilla and salt in the bowl of a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.
- Remove the blade and gently stir in your chocolate chips.
- Transfer mixture to the prepared pan. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until brownies are set in the center and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.
- While brownies are cooling, make ganache topping by adding chocolate chips to a microwave safe bowl. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave using 30 second increments and stirring between each. It shouldn’t take more than 60 seconds or so. Once chocolate is melted, add milk to the bowl and stir until well combined.
- Pour chocolate over the cooled brownies and spread to cover. Top with additional chocolate chips or cacao nibs if desired. As brownies sit, the chocolate topping will start to a harden a bit. You can put them in the fridge to speed up the process.
- Cut brownies into squares and enjoy!
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
These look delicious. Could I use regular peanut butter instead of cashew butter?
Hi Paula. Peanut butter should definitely work. They will just have more a peanut butter flavor, which I’m sure will be yummy!
So easy and delicious. They are decadent. I was a little generous with the cocoa powder as I’m a dark chocolate lover and it was perfect. I was pleasantly surprised at how well they firmed up too!
YUM! So glad to hear that you are loving this recipe, Bree. Thank you so much for coming back and sharing your review & star rating, I appreciate it!
These were so easy and sooo good! My new favorite go-to sweet treat. You can’t tell at all that there are chickpeas in this. We used almond butter instead of cashew because it’s all we had, and they were delicious! ❤️
Ah yay! This is the best, Kristen. I am so glad that you are loving this recipe and it is a hit. Thank you for your review + star rating, I so appreciate it!
I’m trying to eat better since my cancer diagnosis. I love the recipes thanks so much
I am so sorry to hear that, Jolene. Glad you found my recipes and hope they can help!