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Healthy Test Kitchen: Black Bean Brownies

PBbrownie

Recipe 1: Pretty meh, but edible

Black bean brownies are one of those things people tell me that they’ve made, like avocado based chocolate pudding, when they find out I’m a chef who specializes in healthful eating. Until today, I had never made a single black bean brownie. I’m not sure what kept me away- I was very bean-averse as a kid but now they are my main source of protein, so who knows what the hold up was. I think part of me just didn’t believe they could work. The first recipe I tried today didn’t really, but I was determined not to give up! I found the first recipe on Pinterest and it looked amazing, but when the brownies came out of the oven they didn’t have that crackly-shiny top that to me is the signature of a delicious fudgy brownie below. I lost over 1/3rd of the pan of brownies to crumbling as I tried to take them out of the pan, after a good long cool off in the fridge. They didn’t taste bad but they were not appealing to the eyes and had a funny wet-but-crumbly texture I was confused by. All in all, they were not a brownie I would be especially proud to serve.

I was discouraged; I googled “my black bean brownies are crumbly” and found a message board where many people reported the same thing. Lo and behold, on that same board, someone had posted a recipe that they had been given by a friend and thought were normal brownies. I clicked the link, and found myself where I immediately realized I should have turned first: The Meal Makeover Moms! I have their cookbook, No Whine with Dinner and it has never led me astray in cooking for a picky bunch of moms and kids. My resolve to make a successful black bean brownie was bolstered by my faith in these ladies ability to make truly healthy, kid-friendly foods, I was ready to try again.

Seriously, which one would you rather eat?

Recipe 2: Seriously, which one would you rather eat?

The second recipe admittedly featured refined sugar (not a ton though) and canola oil, but compared to your average out of a box brownie, they are stellar nutritionally, and are definitely the best gluten free, lactose free brownie I’ve ever had, not to mention the protein! I haven’t done the math yet, but I would venture these brownies are much healthier than your average breakfast cereal or even pre-packaged granola bar. They popped right out of the pan after bout 30 minutes cooling! They are fudgy, dense, chocolaty, delicious, and not at all black-beany. This was a great lesson to me that when trying out a new food, not to assume it’s categorically bad- it could just be a bad recipe! Try, try again I did, and I was richly rewarded with these brownies, and I know my ladies here will love them for dessert!

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2 comments on “Healthy Test Kitchen: Black Bean Brownies

  1. Meal Makeover Mom Janice
    February 3, 2014

    Glad you loved our black bean brownies! They are the most searched recipe on our Meal Makeover Moms’ Kitchen blog. 🙂 Happy, healthy cooking!

  2. Chef Jill
    February 3, 2014

    Thank you so much for all your recipes! I am a chef at a residential program for moms & young children, and No Whine with Dinner is consistently a source of both mom and kid approval winning dishes.

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This entry was posted on February 3, 2014 by in Nutrition, Recipes and tagged , , , , , .
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