Fudgy Black Bean Brownies

DF GF VG

These are the best black bean brownies!! They’re so fudgy and delicious. No one will be able to tell that they’re flourless and made with beans!

Today’s black bean brownie recipe was actually inspired by one of Isaac’s students. When we got married back in 2013 his class made us a cookbook as a gift. Each student submitted a favorite recipe to include in the book so it’s filled with taste-tested recipes, many of which are hand written and include adorable pictures.

I’ve made the brownies a couple times. The first time I followed the original recipe exactly to get an idea of how they should turn out and then I made a batch with some EBF-friendly changes. My version uses maple syrup instead of sugar, coconut oil instead of butter and raw cacao powder.

Stack of flourless back bean brownies, topped with chocolate chips and walnuts.

Using Maple Syrup Instead of Sugar

The biggest change is the maple syrup. I love using maple syrup (especially in baked goods) so we always have a big jug of it in the fridge. Because maple syrup isn’t processed, it contains higher levels of potentially beneficial minerals, including calcium, potassium, sodium and copper, making it a great natural sweetener and sugar alternative.

Hand holding a healthy and fudgey black bean brownie topped with chocolate chips and walnuts.

Making Brownies with Black Beans

I know it sounds kind of crazy, but yes these brownies are made with black beans! But don’t worry because no one will see or taste the beans. They get blended up in your food processor and they’re completely undetectable.

The black beans are used instead of flour so there’s no gluten in these brownies and they have a little extra fiber and protein. Not only is this awesome for dietary purposes, but it also means that you can blend the batter right in your food processor or blender!

Ingreditents for black bean brownies in a food processor. Eggs, cocoa powder, black beans, and vanilla.

Ingredients & Substitutions

The brownies are a breeze to whip up and come out tasting moist, flavorful and plenty sweet. I love the fudgy consistency of brownies and the little bits of texture from the chopped walnuts. I’ve tried other black bean brownie recipes before and none have turned out as good as this recipe. I think you’re going to LOVE them just as much as we do!

Here’s what you need to make these black bean brownies:

  • black beans – I used canned black beans (drained and rinsed), but you can always use dry black beans instead. I haven’t tried this, but someone else used 154g of dry black beans and the brownies turned out well.
  • eggs – To make this recipe vegan you could use flax eggs (1 Tablespoon flaxseed + 3 Tablespoons water). I have tested these brownies with flax eggs and the brownies turned out, they just didn’t rise as well.
  • coconut oil – butter works too.
  • raw cacao powder – raw cacao powder is a natural superfood high in antioxidants and nutrients such as iron, potassium, magnesium and zinc. It is known to promote healthy digestion and reduce inflammation, among many other health benefits. That said, if you don’t have raw cacao powder on hand, cocoa powder works as well!
  • sea salt – a baking essential!
  • pure vanilla extract – for some added flavor.
  • pure maple syrup – another liquid sweetener like honey or agave would also work.
  • chocolate chips – I love Lily’s chocolate chips for a low-sugar option and Enjoy Life chocolate chips for a dairy-free/soy-free option.
  • raw walnuts – I love the added crunch the walnuts add, but you can totally skip these or use another nut instead.

Batter for black bean brownies in a food processor and chocolate chips.

How to Store These Brownies

These brownies never last long in our house, but my recommendation is to store leftover brownies in the fridge for up to one week. I haven’t tried freezing them, but I’m sure they would be okay to freeze in an airtight container for up to three months.

Spatula holding a black bean brownie topped with chocolate chips and walnuts.

More Dessert Recipes with Beans to Try:

More Brownie Recipes To Try:

If you make these black bean brownies please leave me a comment and star rating below letting me know how they turned out. Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other readers! 

Black Bean Brownies

5 from 83 votes
These are the best black bean brownies!! They’re so fudgy and delicious. No one will be able to tell that they’re flourless and made with beans!
Stack of flourless back bean brownies, topped with chocolate chips and walnuts.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 16 brownies

Ingredients

  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free/dairy-free chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup chopped raw walnuts, optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven: Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Prepare baking pan: Grease an 8×8-inch baking pan.
  • Combine ingredients: Place beans, eggs, coconut oil, cacao powder, salt, vanilla and maple syrup in the bowl of a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.
  • Add chocolate chips and nuts: Remove the blade and gently stir in your chocolate chips and walnuts, if using. (Another option is to sprinkle the walnuts on top of the brownie batter once you pour it into the pan.)
  • Bake: Transfer mixture to the prepared pan. Bake for 35 minutes, or until brownies are set in the center and a toothpicks comes out clean. Cool completely, cut into squares and enjoy!
  • Store: Store brownies in the fridge for 3-5 days.

Notes

  • Eggs: To make this recipe vegan you could use flax eggs (1 Tablespoon flaxseed + 3 Tablespoons water). I have tested these brownies with flax eggs and the brownies turned out, they just didn’t rise as well.
  • Coconut oil: Butter works too.
  • Cacao powder: You can use cocoa powder instead.
  • Maple syrup: Another liquid sweetener like honey or agave would also work.
  • Chocolate chips: I love Lily’s chocolate chips for a low-sugar option and Enjoy Life chocolate chips for a dairy-free/soy-free option.
  • Walnuts: You can totally skip these or use another nut instead.

Nutrition

Serving: 1brownie Calories: 206kcal Carbohydrates: 27g Protein: 8g Fat: 9g Saturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 36mg Sodium: 36mg Fiber: 5g Sugar: 7g
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: black bean brownies

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

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Recipe Rating




    244 comments
    1. Lori
      July 1, 2021 AT 4:15 pm

      5 stars
      I finally made these for the first time this morning in the Vitamix. Also cooked in colourful silicone cupcake “ramekins” (made 11 and baked for 18 minutes at 350). So easy and delicious! Especially good chilled – the chocolate chips stand out! Next time will add walnuts or
      Pepitas! Thanks Brittany! So many great and healthy recipes!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        July 2, 2021 AT 9:57 am

        Woo!! So happy to hear these black bean brownies were a hit, Lori! Thanks for trying them and coming back to leave a review. I so appreciate it!

    2. Audreza Das
      May 26, 2021 AT 12:36 am

      We don’t have black beans that readily in India. I was wondering if you think I can substitute them with red kidney beans instead?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 26, 2021 AT 1:23 am

        Hey Audreza – I’m not sure as I haven’t tried it. I’m sure it would work, but it might change the flavor of the brownies. Let me know if you decide to try it.

    3. Becky
      May 24, 2021 AT 7:45 pm

      Looks great! Do you think it would work the same with red kidney beans?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 26, 2021 AT 1:21 am

        Hey Becky – I’m not sure as I haven’t tried it. I did try this recipe with chickpeas and it didn’t have the same flavor, so using red kidney beans might change the overall flavor of the brownies. Let me know if you try it!

    4. Elizabeth
      May 24, 2021 AT 6:02 pm

      Could I substitute applesauce for the coconut oil?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 26, 2021 AT 1:20 am

        Hey Elizabeth – I haven’t tried this, so I’m not 100% sure how it would turn out. Let me know if you decide to try it!

    5. Denice Fritz
      May 24, 2021 AT 5:46 pm

      5 stars
      Can the coconut oil be substituted with a different kind of oil? Looking forward to making these. Love all your recipes!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 24, 2021 AT 5:48 pm

        Yes, that should be just fine! 🙂 Let me know how they turn out for you!

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