How to bake gluten-free chocolate brownies

Chocolate brownies for everyone! Yay…

These sweet gooey fudgy chocolate brownies are gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and even vegan-friendly! And, not to forget to mention they are super easy to bake! Win, win, win, win, win!

Chocolate brownies are typically baked using flour and eggs. However, this recipe uses black beans, flax seeds, and naturally sweet ingredients including maple syrup and sticky dates.

Black beans

The black beans (also known as turtle beans), when blended into a smooth paste, help give the chocolate brownies that fudgy and gooey texture. And to make you feel even better inside, black beans are renowned as a superfood due to being high in protein and fiber and containing other key vitamins and minerals.

Flax egg

The ‘flax egg’ is the new vegan sensation for replacing eggs in baking. Whilst it sounds like a weird scientific experiment, it is, in fact, ground flax seeds whisked with water. Flax seeds contain a natural gum that becomes thick and gelatinous when grounded and whisked with water. This essentially makes a good emulsifier and will help the structure of the chocolate brownie – much like eggs!

Naturally sweet

How do you bake something so deliciously sweet without using refined sugar? The answer is in a good quality maple syrup and sweet sticky dates. It’s really amazing how just a ¼ cup of maple syrup and a 100g of pitted dates can make a chocolate brownies just as sweet!

Let’s bake

Preparing and baking the chocolate brownies is super quick and easy. The trick is to prepare the flax egg by grinding then whisking the flax seeds with water, and then storing in the fridge until the mixture thickens.

Once the flax egg is nice and thick, you then simply of blend it with the rest of the ingredients including a decent quality cocoa powder that doesn’t include any sugar and nasty additives.

For this recipe, I lightly greased a 27 x 20 x 3.5cm non-stick brownie tin with a little coconut oil which is a great alternative to butter. I then spooned the mixture into the prepared brownie tin and used a spatula to even the surface. To give the chocolate brownies that nice crust, I carefully swirled the surface with a toothpick.

It all sounds yummy and too easy, right? Well, what are you waiting for? Get baking!

Serves

Up to 12 bars

Prep time

30 minutes

Cook time

30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp flaxseed
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 400g tinned black beans
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil, plus a little for greasing the pan
  • 100g cocoa powder
  • 300ml maple syrup (just over a ¼ cup)
  • 100g pitted dates, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp baking powder

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170c / 150c fan, and lightly grease a non-stick brownie pan. Thoroughly rinse and drain the black beans using a sieve.
  2. Prepare flax eggs by combining the flaxseed and water in a bowl. Mix well, and then place the bowl in your fridge for 15 minutes until the mixture thickens.
  3. Add the flax eggs with the remaining ingredients into a food processor, and puree about 1-2 minutes or until smooth.
  4. Add the mixture to the prepared brownie pan, and use a spatula to even the surface. Carefully swirl the surface with a toothpick; this will create a nice crust when baked.
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is dry and the edges start to pull away from the sides of the pan.
  6. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 20-30 minutes before removing from the pan. Divide into even bars with a knife, and then gently lift out using a fork. For best results, the insides should be fudgy.
  7. Store completely cooled leftovers in an airtight container for up to a few days. Will keep in the freezer for up to 1 month.