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Okay, so using black beans in brownies isn’t anything new. In fact, I found so many recipes for this online I almost decided not to post about it for fear of redundancy. But I am anyway. Because they’re amazing. And anyone that is on a restricted diet MUST try these, they are a lifesaver when chocolate cravings arise.

I tend to only make small batches of things because I’m a student and can’t spend more than about $30 on groceries every week. But I made a full batch of these because it uses rather inexpensive ingredients! (Well, minus the agave nectar. The next time I make these I really want to focus on reducing the agave – maybe with a stevia rendition of some kind.)

I have made some small changes just for the sake of diet restrictions and personal taste, such as removing butter and the commonly used walnuts. I like walnuts, but not usually in brownies. Besides, I was feeling the need for a more ‘German chocolate-y’ brownie. Hence the coconut and pecans.

German Chocolate Black Bean Brownies:

4 oz unsweetened chocolate
1/3 cup canola oil
2 cups soft cooked black beans
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3 generous tablespoons instant coffee
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups amber agave nectar
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup unsweetened dessicated coconut


Preheat over to 325. Line a 9×13 size pan with a parchment paper for easier removal. (Or you can do what I did… I simply sprayed the pan, but left the brownies in the fridge overnight before trying to extract them from the pan. I didn’t have any parchment paper in the house.) I also used a mini muffin tray for some of the batter, but I’ll explain how that was a bad idea later…

Put the chocolate and oil in a glass bowl, put in the microwave for approximately 2 minutes (do in 30 sec intervals just in case) and mix thoroughly. Put 3 or 4 medium spoonfuls of this mixture into the blender. To the remaining mixture, add the instant coffee and salt. Mix well.

To the blender add the black beans, 1 egg, and vanilla extract. Blend until smooth. (A food processor would be ideal, but I don’t own one.) This process was rather laborious for me. My blender didn’t like the density of the mix so I had to keep stopping it to ‘re-arrange’ the batter. (this is why i say to add some of the chocolate and oil, it really helps to smooth out the batter in the blender.) I could still see small pieces of beans but that didn’t seem to affect anything in the end.

In a separate bowl, use an electronic mixer to beat the eggs until fluffy and creamy. I did it for about 2 1/2 minutes. Add the agave nectar and continue beating the mix; about another 2 minutes. Separately mix the black bean batter and the chocolate/coffee mix together before adding them to the eggs and agave. Mix well. I used the electronic mixer; everything was well blended in about 1 minute.

Pour the batter into your pan and sprinkle finely chopped pecans and coconut on top. Bake for approximately 30 minutes. Let the pan cool before cutting. Ideally you want to put them into the fridge to cool for a couple hours or overnight.

The 9×13 glass pan worked great. The mini muffin pan will definitely never be attempted again. In the glass pan, you can cut the brownies and then lift them with a spatula; which worked fine. In the mini muffin pan, there was no way for me to get any utensil underneath the brownie to lift it out. So I ended up with a bunch of tops and then had to scoop the bottoms out with a spoon. Of course, it tasted so good that I just put it all into a storage container and ate it with a spoon later! So it wasn’t wasted, but I would highly recommend using a larger pan for better removal :)

This recipe is linked to Slightly IndulgentTempt My Tummy Tuesday, What Can I Eat That’s Gluten Free?Chocolate Obsession Would You Like Chocolate with That? and Friday Foodie Fix – Coffee.

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21 Responses to German Chocolate Brownies

  1. Iris says:

    Sounds good to me! Sometimes I think I shouldn’t post something because there are so many versions out there already, but every version’s a little different, and you never know…your version could be the best. :)

  2. SnoWhite says:

    I love making black bean brownies! I bet the nuts add great texture and flavor (I’d add them myself, but I’m allergic).

  3. Shelby says:

    Hi Aubree! I just got your message and will keep your blog bookmarked! It is such a small world! I do know your parents :) I’m headed over to FB, I’m interested in adding you as a friend now! lol. Will be great to have another blogger friend with my interests and mutual friends!

  4. Aubree, you had me at German Chocolate! LOL And, then I was pleased to see that these are black bean brownies. :-) Black beans and chickpeas makes such great brownies and cakes. (And, even white beans per The Spunky Coconut’s vanilla bean cake!) Yum! Your frugal ideas will be especially helpful to folks.


  5. Lisa says:

    That looks really good.
    I would not of thought of adding black beans in a brownies recipe.
    Thank-you for sharing.

  6. Rachel says:

    Oh my, those look so rich and yummy. I haven’t tried to make black bean brownies myself yet. I may have to give it a go. They are sweet-ish so I imagine lend themselves well to the application. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Linda says:

    Those look great. I’ve heard of black bean brownies, but I’ve never tried it. I like your German chocolate twist on them.

  8. Brian says:

    Those brownies sure look tasty. I’ve never tried them with black beans. I may have to give it a try.

  9. Jerri says:

    Wow! These look really good!

  10. selfsagacity says:

    That looks so yummy! I love German chocolate cake but this is more my fav. Visit me when you can.

  11. Sherry says:

    Those look really good. I like the twist of making German Chocolate brownies.

  12. Joyce says:

    This is a very interesting recipe with the beans. I need to try this one. I think that lately everyone is on a limited food budget due to the higher prices in the markets.

  13. […] Freezer Soup 2. Chaya – New England Sweet Potato Soup 3. Self Sagacity Seafood Cravings 4. Aubree Cherie @ Living Free (German Chocolate Brownies) 5. Mumsy 6. Kristen (mol- e) 7. Laura @ Frugal Follies (Crockpot Beef […]

  14. Gollum says:

    This is brilliant–black beans in brownies. I’m putting this recipe on my “to do” list.

  15. Chaya says:

    Sounds good to me. I have a few on my blog that are flourless, no beans, and come out beautifully. One is plain chocolate and the other has ganache. Both have gone over well.

    I hope to try yours and add them to the list.

  16. Iris says:

    I really need to make these! Stop by my blog for an award. :)

  17. […] or gluten)3. Ari @FoodIntolerancesCook-Healthy Choc. Cookies w/Homemade PB Chips- sugar-free!4. Aubree Cherie @ LivingFree (German Chocolate Brownies)5. Finding Joy in My Kitchen (Whole Wheat Carrot Zucchini Pancakes)6. Linda @ Gluten-Free Homemaker […]

  18. Chaya says:

    Thanks for posting this delicious recipe on Chocolate Obsession at

  19. I’ve heard of the black beans, but still need to try it. These sound so yummy, especially with the pecans and coconut!! Thanks for linking it up!

  20. Chelsey says:

    I’ve been working on my own rendition of black bean brownies since first seeing them here

    I have even come up with chocolate avocado icing!! Love the dessicated coconut and nuts on top of yours, and I think the instant coffee boost will make them extra fab!

  21. Jenn says:

    Oh do these look rich and tasty! I haven’t baked with coffee before…. great idea to blend with chocolate and great variation on black bean brownies!

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