I’m always a bit intrigued by recipes that incorporate unsuspecting ingredients into a traditional favorite. I admit, I haven’t always been very open to the idea of substituting strange ingredients into my baked goods, and that’s probably why it took me so long to give these a try. I suspect one of the main reason why the “black bean” brownie was invented was for those with a gluten intolerance (as they are grain-free), but these can be enjoyed by all!
Ok, but really…does it TASTE like a brownie?? I mean come on, it’s made of BEANS.
In my humble opinion, YES! With a caveat…these are not “chewy” brownies, rather they have a rich creamy texture, sort of like fudge, and are a bit on the delicate side (they break easier then traditional brownies). So if you are a die-hard “my brownies must be chewy” type of person, then this is not a recipe for you. I personally did not detect a “beany” taste, and the key to that lies in NOT using canned beans. Rather, this recipe calls for the use of dried black beans, which are better for you anyways (no preservatives or salt), and it’s 3-4 times cheaper. Just make sure to soak the beans the night before you actually want to make the brownies, so a little planning ahead is required.
- 1 1/2 cups soft cooked black beans, rinsed & drained (soak and cook 3/4 cups of dry beans according to directions on package)
- 2 TBLS of water
- 1 egg
- 3 TBLS butter
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder (the higher quality the better)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- heaping 1/2 cup brown sugar
- topping of choice – optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Line an 8×8 pan with parchment paper, lightly grease and set aside.
- Using a food processor, puree the beans and 2 TBLS of water for approx. 3 mins. or until very smooth.
- Add remaining ingredients, pulse a few times to get wet and dry ingredients incorporated, then puree until well blended.
- Pour batter into pan. If you do add a topping please note that it will need to be gently pressed into the batter.
- Bake for 24-26 minutes or until the top is dry and the edges start to pull away from the sides.
- Allow the brownies to cool on the counter. For easiest cutting, refrigerate them first (remember, they are delicate).