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Alternative Recipes: Black Bean Brownies

You heard that right! Black bean brownies are an alternative to regular brownies. This alternative offers a tasty and easy variation that provides extra nutrients and the same gooey, delicious texture for all brownie lovers.

picture of brownies

Photo by Andrea Nikolai

What you’ll need
  • An oven
  • A food processor
  • 8×8 pan
  • Cake spatula
  • Butter knife for cutting brownies
  • Plates and utensils
  • 1 1/2 cups black beans (1 15-oz can, drained and rinsed very well)
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup quick oats
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup, honey, or agave
  • One stevia packet OR 2 tbsp sugar (or omit and increase the maple syrup to 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup chocolate chips
  • Optional: more chips, for topping
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Combine all ingredients except chips in a food processor, and blend until smooth. Really blend well. (A blender can work, but the texture and taste will be much better in a food processor.)
  3. Stir in the chips, then pour into a greased 8×8 pan. Optional: sprinkle extra chocolate chips over the top.
  4. Cook the black bean brownies for 15-18 minutes, then let cool for at least 10 minutes before trying to cut. If they still look a bit undercooked, you can place them in the fridge overnight, and they will firm up!
Why Black Beans?

According to, black beans are considered the healthiest beans out of all the other beans. Black beans have the highest antioxidant count which has the potential to fight against liver, colon, and breast cancer.  They are also high in potassium which can help prevent strokes. They can also help your body use insulin which is great for type 2 diabetics. Black beans are also an incredible source of protein, carbohydrates, and fiber!

Final Thoughts

Using recipes that are healthier alternatives to our favorite foods can provide additional nutrients that are often missing from our diet. This recipe is also a potential family activity and can teach children the joys of healthy alternative foods. Will you give it a try?


Recipe modified slightly from Chocolate Covered Katie:

This blog was written by Family and Consumer Sciences Intern, Mr. Caleb Dowdy, under the supervision of Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agent, Andrea Nikolai, MPH, RDN, LDN.


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