Fudgy Black Bean Brownies – Gluten Free & Vegan

by Sharon on June 13, 2014



I debated whether or not to put ‘black beans’ in the title of this recipe. Truly you would never know the beans were there and I don’t want to scare people off from trying these amazingly fudgy and decadent brownies. After the massive success of these Chickpea Cookie Bars, I knew that baking with beans was going to become a thing. I mean, seriously, baked goods like brownies and cookie bars with the natural protein power of beans? Gluten Free? Vegan to boot? Done, done, and done!


OK, enough yakking about it! Let’s get going!

Like the cookie bars these babies are super easy.

I tossed some oats (look for certified gluten free varieties) and whizzed them into a flour in my food processor.


Add in the rest of the ingredients, less the chocolate chips, and process until totally smooth. Look how fabulously fudgy and creamy this batter looks! No evidence of beans whatsoever. 😉


Stir in the dark chocolate chips.

I poured this delicious batter ( which did get sampled more than once! 😉 ) into a parchment lined loaf pan and dotted the top with a few more dark chocolate chips.

Into the oven it goes to create magic.

Keep baking it until the delicious cracks start to form on top. Tell me this doesn’t look soooo good!


Slice them into bars and share. Don’t tell anyone the ingredients first, though. I love the look in people’s face when I disclose the ‘secret’ ingredient. It’s fun! Most of my friends and co-workers already know that when I come bearing treats there’s always a ‘healthy’ twist to them so I can be greeted with some suspicion, but even the biggest skeptics always hit me up for a second piece.


I cut this batch into small squares so there was enough to go around.


This would be an awesome dessert if you cut it into large bars and top them with ice cream and maybe a drizzle of chocolate sauce or caramel.

Even just a big glass of milk is a nice accompaniment.


Enjoy! 🙂

Serves 16

Fudgy Black Bean Brownies – Gluten Free & Vegan
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  • 1 tin black beans (398 ml.), rinsed & drained
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1/2 cup quick oats (gluten free if necessary)
  • 1/4 herbamere (or sea salt)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp cold brewed coffee (optional)
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips, plus extra 2 tbsp for the top


  1. Preheat oven to 350 and line a loaf pan with parchment paper
  2. In a food processor, grind the oats into a flour
  3. Add the remaining ingredients, except the chocolate chips, and blend until completely smooth
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips and pour into your prepared loaf pan. Scatter the extra chocolate chips over the top
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, checking that the centre is firm and the edges are beginning to brown and crack
  6. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Transfer it from the pan and allow to cool for another 30 minutes before slicing

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Jane (babe + bird) June 13, 2014 at 2:33 pm
These look stellar! The crackly top and gooey middle are calling for me.... because they are protein-packed and gluten-free, I will listen!
Sharon June 13, 2014 at 2:52 pm
Always trust that little voice. ;) You will love these.
Cindy @ Pick Fresh Foods June 13, 2014 at 8:32 pm
Funny Sharon, my guys are approach new treats with hesitation. They know I like to try different things. Love the small bites for tasting. These sound delicious with the chocolate, peanut butter, and oats.
Sharon June 13, 2014 at 10:29 pm
Even with the hesitating, people still dive in, don't they? The small bites=yum yum. :)
Shelley @ Two Healthy Kitchens June 15, 2014 at 10:41 am
I totally love baking anything with beans – from black bean brownies to chickpea pizookies … you name it! It’s so true that people can’t even tell the beans are in there (so I really get your conundrum about whether or not to actually put “black bean” in the name) … yet those beans add so, so much in terms of nutrition. A complete win-win! Extra cool – these are gluten free and vegan! What’s not to love?!?! (Oh … and I also totally get it about your friends always wondering what healthy things are hiding out in the goodies you bring … ummmmm … been there …lol!!!) :D
Sharon June 16, 2014 at 4:10 pm
It never stops them though, does it? That container emptied pret-ty quickly. ;) And chickpea pizookies? Yes, please!
Karen @ Kama Fitness June 16, 2014 at 8:40 am
Ok, I need to come and apply at your work because being a taste tester for The Honour System would be a dream. You're recipes rock! I love this Sharon!
Sharon June 16, 2014 at 9:06 am
Thank you, Karen. You are such a dollface! My little taste testers have become quite spoiled. They expect treats when I come in the door, whether they're made of black beans or not. ;)
ruthann August 19, 2014 at 9:45 pm
I almost always make my own black beans. Any idea how many cups of cooked black beans would go in this recipe ?
Sharon August 19, 2014 at 10:19 pm
Hey Ruthann! I would estimate about a 1 3/4 cups-ish. I gotta get on that preparing my own beans ... Enjoy the rest of your week! :)

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