Think you can't have brownies on a clean-eating diet? Think again!
When it comes to recipes that appeal to everyone, we’ve found that brownies are often the solution! And that really comes as no surprise; brownies are delicious. But what about when you need a popular dessert that’s also on the healthier side? That can be a bit trickier– but that’s what we’re here for! While our clean-eating fudge brownies are made using healthier ingredients, they’re still full of chocolaty flavor and the ooey-gooey texture you expect in a brownie!
What Makes This a “Clean-Eating” Recipe ?
What is clean-eating? This term often refers to ingredients and recipes that are largely unprocessed or in their natural state. You won’t find a bunch of added fat, sugar, or sodium in clean-eating foods. And because of this, they’re usually better for you!
This brownie recipe uses ingredients like black beans, safflower oil, organic eggs, unsweetened cocoa powder, coconut sugar, and oat flour (among a handful of other ingredients) to keep in line with clean-eating guidelines.
“Black beans?” you say…just wait. We’ll make a believer out of you.
The black beans in this recipe may very well be the star of this show. Not only do they add a dose of protein and fiber to the brownies, but they also provide some heartiness and help create the fudgier texture. Meanwhile, safflower oil is an alternative to vegetable oil that offers healthier, unsaturated fats.
We chose to use organic eggs from pastured hens, based on recent research that their eggs contain more Vitamin A & E, as well as a higher concentration of heart-healthy Omega-3s.
Coconut sugar is very similar to white sugar as far as macronutrients go, but it is believed that it may contain a bit more nutrients, making it a slightly better option. Another plus is that coconut oil behaves similar to regular sugar when baking with it. When combined with the unsweetened cocoa powder, you get a chocolatey brownie with just the right amount of sweetness!
The final ingredient worth mentioning is the oat flour. Oat flour is made from rolled oats, and like coconut sugar, holds a greater nutritional value than the all-purpose version. Oat flour is also gluten-free so that is another plus for those who have to be careful about gluten intake.
While the calories may not be that different from boxed versions, one thing is for sure: these clean-eating fudge brownies are loaded with nutrients!
Better Than Your Average Boxed Brownies
Another great thing about this healthier brownie recipe is that it takes about the same amount of time to prepare as the boxed version. So, you get a healthier product without having to spend extra time in the kitchen. In fact, you only need about 10 minutes of prep time to get these fudgy brownies ready to bake.
To begin, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9″x9″ square baking pan with canola or olive oil. Grab your blender and puree the cooked and rinsed black beans with the safflower and olive oil. Pour this mixture into the bowl of an electric mixer and add the eggs, cocoa powder, sucanat, Truvia or stevia, and vanilla extract.
Melt half of the chocolate chips. The easiest way to do this is place them in a microwave-safe bowl and heat them in 20 second intervals at 50% power. After each 20 second interval, stir the chocolate chips until warm and smooth. Once they’re melted, add the chocolate to the mixer. Blend the brownie batter on medium speed until it reaches a creamy consistency.
In a small bowl, whisk together the oat flour, baking powder and salt. Slowly add this dry mixture to the wet ingredients in the mixer until they are just incorporated. Stir in remaining chocolate chips for a batter full of chocolate chunks. Pour it into the prepared pan and bake for about 20 minutes, until the surface looks somewhat matte around the edges and shiny in the middle. Let the brownies cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting into them. Deceptively scrumptious!
If you’d like to add the powdered sugar, it’s really simple to make. Simply add some blonde coconut palm sugar or sucanat to a high powered blender or coffee grinder. Grind the sugar until it reaches a powdered sugar consistency. Add as little or as much as you’d like!
The Perfect Treat Any Day of the Year
One of the many great things about brownies is that you can enjoy them any time of year. Unlike ice cream in the winter time or gingerbread in the summertime, brownies are never out of season. From warm brownies fresh out of the oven during a snowstorm, to backyard picnics on a hot July afternoon, they will never let you down.
We love serving them at get-togethers, especially if it’s a kid-friendly event! If you need more than 8 servings, you can double the batch, or cut them into smaller pieces (since these brownies are pretty large!)
Our clean-eating fudge brownies are a great treat to have on hand when your sweet tooth strikes. In addition to providing more servings, smaller pieces will also help you cut down on calories. Just a bite or two is all you need to satisfy those cravings!
We recommend storing these brownies in the refrigerator. They will keep for about a week, but good luck getting them to last that long. Alternatively, you have the option to freeze them. If you go this route, they will last for up to 3 months in an airtight container. To thaw, leave them wrapped while they rest at room temperature for a couple of hours. That said, they taste the best when they’re fresh!
Clean Eating Fudge Brownies
- 3/4 cup black beans cooked (dried beans preferred over canned), thoroughly rinsed and drained, no salt added
- 1/4 cup safflower oil
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 whole organic eggs free range
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2/3 cup coconut palm sugar or sucanat: this is a clean eating sweetener and wonderful in baked recipes
- 2 truvia packets or stevia, small single serving
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips divided
- 1/3 cup oat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup clean eating powdered sugar for dusting, optional (recipe below)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9x9 square baking pan with canola or olive oil.
- In a blender, puree the cooked and rinsed black beans with the safflower and olive oil. Pour into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add eggs, cocoa, sucanat, truvia or stevia, and vanilla.
- Melt half the chocolate chips and add to mixer. Blend on medium until smooth.
- In a small bowl, whisk together oat flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the mixer until just incorporated. Stir in remaining chocolate chips.
- Pour into prepared pan and bake for about 20 minutes, until the surface looks somewhat matte around the edges and shiny in the middle. Let cool at least 15 minutes before cutting. Deceptively scrumptious!
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This recipe was created by Amee at Amee’s Savory Dish.
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