Vegan, Gluten-Free Brownies


This week my beautiful friend is getting married in Big Sur and I couldn’t be more excited for her. She’s the girl you KNOW would throw down for you if someone was trying to pick a fight with you. Plus she’s funny, smart, and always willing to help; she’s an all around bad-ass. I offered to make the desserts for the reception, and if you’re wondering why (because I know you are), it’s because:

1-I love her and want to help in any way I can.

2-It doubles as a wedding present (SCORE!).

3-Baking is fun. Usually. Most of the time.

4-I knew she wouldn’t be a bridezilla about the desserts.

The only request she had was that a few desserts be vegan. I knew of black bean brownies, and had been wanting to try them out, so I figured her wedding would be the perfect guinea pig for a new recipe!


I finally decided on this recipe by Minimalist Baker. If you haven’t had a chance to check out their blog, you totally should. They feature recipes with 10 or less ingredients, prepared in 30 minutes or less. (HEY MOMS! TIME SAVING RECIPES!)

The brownies were absolute perfection. The flavor is dark and rich and not too sweet. The texture is just like a butter, egg and gluten filled brownie. The original recipe said to use regular muffin pans, but I used mini ones and reduced the temperature. Other than that this is the first time I didn’t alter a recipe, mainly because I was too scared to. I do think I’ll add a little more sugar next time, but other than that, this recipe is bomb.

Brownies in pan


I ate 4 as soon as they cooled down.


I eat it

I also had some cherry preserves that I made with cherries from my parent’s trees. UM, just look at this and drool.

Cherries on top


And this:

cherry brownie



OK, wipe your chin off and make these. You’ll be so happy you did.

Vegan, Gluten-Free Black Bean Brownies by Minimalist Baker.

  • 2 large flax eggs (2.5 T flaxseed meal + 6 T water)
  • 1 15 oz. can of black beans, rinsed until clear and drained.
  • 3 T coconut oil, melted (or other oil of choice)
  • 3/4 cup (88.5 grams) cocoa powder (I used Hershey’s but I’m sure better quality cocoa would make for better brownies)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • heaping 1/2 c. (125 grams) raw sugar, slightly ground (I did not do this, but I would recommend it. Also, if you like things sweeter, add maybe 1/4 c. (63 grams) more sugar)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Optional toppings: crush walnuts, pecans or semisweet chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees if using standard muffin pans, 335 degrees if using mini pans.
  2. Lightly grease your pans
  3. Combine the flax seed and water in the bowl of a food processor or blender. I used my Vita-Mix. Pulse a couple times and then let rest for a few minutes.
  4. Add remaining ingredients (Not the toppings) and process until smooth. This part takes some work. Keep scraping down the sides and repeating until it’s smooth.
  5. If the batter appears too thick, add a tablespoon or two of water and process. It should be fairly thick, like the consistency of frosting. It shouldn’t flow off a spoon.
  6. Scoop the batter into your pans, until they’re about 2/3 full. I used a cookie scoop and a wet finger to even the top out.
  7. Top with toppings if you want.
  8. Bake until the tops are dry and the edges start to pull away from the sides. My mini ones only took about 18 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes before removing from pan.
  10. Store in an airtight container for up to a few days. Refrigerate to keep longer. I have mine in the freezer so we’ll see what happens.
By the way, if you do eat them all, they are made with beans… so you may want to not share a bed with someone after dessert…unless they really love you.




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