Let Them Eat Kale

Because Cake Is Sooo 1789

High-Protein Black Bean Brownies with Greek Yogurt Frosting

Well hello there! How are you today?

Since my last post a little bit heavy, I thought it would be best to introduce a sweet recipe next. We could all use a little extra sweetness in our lives, right?



Fortunately, this recipe allows you to enjoy all of the sweetness of brownies with none of the guilt. I find that refined sugar and flour give me a headache, but that doesn’t mean I avoid sweets completely. I love wholesome desserts made with real food ingredients, especially when chocolate is involved. As my roommates can attest, I put cocoa powder on everything and always enjoy a little nightcap of dark chocolate. If you ask me, eating healthy should always include a little room for chocolate.


As for chocolate, these brownies are full of it. High-quality dark chocolate cocoa powder is key to a rich brownie, but I’m sure some chopped dark chocolate (or chocolate chips) would be a lovely addition if you feel so inclined. Surprisingly, though, it’s the black beans that give this healthy treat its irresistibly fudge-y texture. You certainly can’t taste the beans, but your body will reap the nutritional benefits of high-fiber and protein. And with no added flours/grains or sugar to weigh you down, these brownies can be enjoyed at any time during the day or night. (I’ve even been know to use them as pre-workout fuel!)




While these healthy black bean brownies are free of so many things (gluten, eggs, dairy, flour, sugar, fat, etc.), they definitely deliver on chocolate-y goodness and nutritional benefits. So, indulge! Your body and taste buds will thank you.


High-Protein Black Bean Brownies

Makes 12 Brownie Muffins (or an 8-by-8 tray of brownies) 

Vegan, Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free, Fat-Free, Grain-free (optional), Nut-Free



  • 1 (15oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained OR 1.75 cooked black beans 
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp pure madagascar vanilla powder OR 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup Stevia in the Raw baking blend OR organic sucanat (*use heaping 1/2 cup if you have less of a sweet tooth, like me)
  • 1/4 cup protein powder (I use either Vanilla Sunwarrior Brown Rice Protein, hemp protein, or a custom hemp/rice blend)
  • 4 TBS ground flax seed (flax seed meal)
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional, but HIGHLY recommended)
  • chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Prepare muffin tin with liners, place silicon liners on a baking sheet, or line an 8×8 brownie pan with parchment paper. Your method will depend on preference. (I use silicon liners for ease of removal and portioning.) 
  2. In a food processor, process black bean, applesauce, almond milk, and vanilla very well. The mixture should be smooth.
  3. In a bowl, use a whisk to combine cocoa powder, stevia, protein powder, flax seed meal, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon.
  4. Add wet mixture from the food processor to the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined, adding an additional tablespoon of almond milk or water if needed to get things going. The batter should be thick.
  5. Stir in chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips, if desired.
  6. Evenly distribute batter into desired baking vehicle. (Now would also be a good time to save some of the batter for yourself; it’s extremely delicious and vegan, so why not?)
  7. Bake for 30 minutes if using muffin tin or silicon holder method. A brownie pan will need to bake a little bit longer, probably around 45 minutes. You will know when the brownies are done regardless by making sure the top has set. Personally, I always enjoy when these brownies are little undercooked because they are even fudge-y-er.
  8. Let cool completely before enjoying to let them set. If you don’t care about such things, by all means, please enjoy them warm. It’s heavenly.

Greek Yogurt Frosting: I usually enjoy these brownies as is, but to create contrast, I recently started topping them with greek yogurt (vegan or otherwise) or drizzling them with almond milk and topping with fruit. Chobani Greek Yogurt makes a black cherry flavor that complements these rich chocolate flavor of these brownies so well. So Delicious also makes Coconut Milk Greek Yogurt that I am quite fond of. I recommend the plain, blueberry, or raspberry flavor.


Have a lovely weekend!



One comment on “High-Protein Black Bean Brownies with Greek Yogurt Frosting

  1. Sara @ Nourish and Flourish
    January 5, 2013

    Oooh, these look fabulous! I completely agree – a healthy diet is one that contains a healthy dose of chocolate! 😉 I eat it every single day (multiple times!), which helps prevent my sweet tooth from getting out of control. 🙂 Thanks for the great recipe!

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