Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Frosted Raspberry Black Bean Brownies

No doubt this title sounds a little strange. I know it did to me when I first read about these. Black beans and brownies are never three words I would have put together without wincing. Probably what you are doing now.

But surprise! It works!

Over on Dr. Fuhrman's member site this is one recipe that everyone seems to love so I thought, hey! I love brownies so I'm game.

But why would anyone make brownies with black beans at all?

I hear ya. Well the benefits are many:

no processed sugar
no flour (aka gluten)
no dairy
no soy
no heavy amount of nuts like most raw desserts (although there is some nut butter)
plus lots of beneficial carbs and fiber from the black beans

Beans of all kinds are a dieters best friend as they fill you up, have great fiber and are a good source of calories when eating a high produce (and low calorie) diet.

I added raspberries because really what goes better with chocolate than raspberries?

I also decided to use a 12 individual cheesecake pan when I read that the serving size was 12. I cut the time down for mine because of the pan and frankly I could have cooked mine longer. They were not as fully cooked as they could have been. They came out more like a pudding cake, which was still quite good but for a crunchier outside, more time would have been better.

The frosting is optional and also vegan, sugar and nut free. Have you had "Chocomole" aka chocolate frosting made with avocados before? It's very good and even great as a pudding.

So let's get to it, shall we?

Raspberry Black Bean Brownies

Recipe adapted from Dr. Fuhrman's Black Bean Brownies from the website:

Ingredients for Brownies:

2 cups of no or low salt black beans, drained and rinsed or home cooked
10 pitted medjool dates, soaked until soft
2 tablespoons raw almond butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder or cacao
1 tablespoon ground chia seeds
1 pint of raspberries, divided.


Preheat oven to 200 degrees F.

Combine black beans, dates, almond butter and vanilla in a food processor or high-speed blender. I used my Vitamix for this and while you can, you will get quite a workout with the plunger as this batter is really really quite thick. I had to add a couple of tablespoons of water to get it moving at all. Next time I will use a food processor.

Once well mixed, go ahead and add the cocoa powder and the ground chia seeds and blend again.

(Sorry, about the lighting here. I lost my sunlight unexpectedly- darn clouds!) 
Spread half the mixture into a lightly oiled pan (8x8) or muffin/ cheesecake pan. Mine was non-stick so I did not use any oil.

Mash up 3/4 cup of the raspberries in a cup and then spread over half the brownie batter. Then add the remaining batter over the raspberry layer to the.

Bake for 1 1/2 hours at 200 degrees.
Cool completely. Apply topping if desired. Cut into 12 pieces or remove from cups.
Can be stored in the refrigerator covered for up to a week. (I froze mine.)

Chocomole aka Chocolate Frosting (optional)


1 ripe avocado
1/2 cup water
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder or cacao
5 pitted medjool dates, soaked until soft.
splash of vanilla

Blend all ingredients until smooth.

Frost brownies if using and top with remaining raspberries.


Well are you game? I hope you give these a try. And if you do, please come back and tell me your verdict.

I'll be sharing this over at Healthy Vegan Fridays and also on Gluten Free Wednesdays over at the Gluten Free Homemaker's site.

Oh and one more thing:

When you have that blender all chocolateied (is that a word?) up after making the frosting use that left over goodness to whip up a smoothie.

Chocolate Raspberry Banana Smoothie:

Blender coated with chocomole
1 cup of almond milk
handful of raspberries
2 dates
2 frozen bananas


Until next time…

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  1. Looks interesting! I like the tip on the chocolateied up blender!

    1. Thanks Kathleen.
      It is different! But it's amazing how much it tastes like "normal" brownies without all the "normal" ingredients.

  2. These look so good! I can't believe I haven't made the black bean brownies yet. Maybe I'll go for it this weekend. I love how you used the cheesecake pans.

    1. Thanks Nikki! I know, it sounds a little strange. I'm just learning how beans can be a great batter/ thickener for lots of things. New to me! I hope you give it a try and let me know what you think.

    2. Thanks Nikki! I know, it sounds a little strange. I'm just learning how beans can be a great batter/ thickener for lots of things. New to me! I hope you give it a try and let me know what you think.

  3. Ok, these look insane! I've made black bean brownies before, but they were definitely not healthy. I love how yours have pure ingredients. And they're so beautiful!! You should link the frosting up to Raw Foods Thursdays. Erin at Sift, Stir & Savour is hosting today.

  4. You don't really bake for 1 1/2 hours do you? Seems a long time for 12 mini brownies.

    1. Yep! That's really the correct time. The lower heat needs it. Not sure why it's only 200 degrees but that's what was written and I noticed other recipes for black bean brownies have similar.

  5. These look soooo delicious! Thanks for sharing them at Gluten-Free Wednesdays. I'll be highlighting your entry this week.