Black Bean Brownies

Yes, yes, yes – I know beans aren’t paleo. And I’ll probably have to start every single bean recipe post off like this. But I’ve been following the bean protocol for almost 4 months now and I’ve never felt better. And that means I’m playing around with bean recipes way more now. So you’ll see them here from time to time. If you’re strict paleo, no need to make them. If you’re upset you can’t have these black bean brownies, I welcome you to try my many, many, many other brownie recipes on here. I’ve been sharing recipes on here for almost 10 years, there is no shortage of paleo recipes to choose from! But if you’re open to different types of recipes, get ready for good ass time!

PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies

PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies

I know I sound a bit hostile in my intro, but that’s because I’ve had it up to HERE with the negative Nancy’s of the world. I know many people would call them Karen’s, but I’ve met a handful of great Karen’s on instagram so I don’t want to throw them under the bus. Nancy just rhymes. I know a great Nancy…only one though. You know what would be a good name to use? Carol. That’s my mom’s name so it makes it more hilarious and close to home. Since she’s family, I can say it. Carol’s definitely ask for the manager or don’t look a server in the eye. I love my mother, she’s a great person, but her name must replace Karen. Sorry, mom, Karen’s need a break. The Carol’s of the world have just been hounding me lately and I’m hella exhausted. But luckily middle school and high school trained me to take on the Carol’s of the world so I could continue on with my days with my head held high.

PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies

But honestly, my head is exhausted. You can only keep your head held high for so long before your neck starts to ache. So you know what I’m going to do? I’m checking myself into a hotel tonight. I have a massage booked, I’m ordering ALL the room service, bringing some Tylenol PM, and I’m leaving my phone and computer behind. Just me, myself, and I are going to be in that hotel room…in silence. I’m going to finish a book I’ve been trying to get through for months now, I’m going to pull the black out curtains, and I’m going to try to sleep in past 7am. No one can call me, message me, text me, email me, yell at me, or tell me I’m going to hell because I say the word fuck. It’s going to be the best 20 hours of my life. I might even eat the snacks they put in your room and charge 8x the price. Fuck it! My husband likes to do things for himself like golf or go on a camping trip with friends, but that doesn’t interest me in the least. I fill my cup up by being alone and these next 20 hours are going to be pure joy. Speaking of that, time to pack!

PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies


Black Bean Brownies

  • Author: juli
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 16 brownies 1x


  • 1 15-ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips, melted
  • 1/2 cup nut butter (peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup oil (grapeseed oil, avocado oil, melted ghee, coconut oil, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons black cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch of salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8×8 glass baking dish.
  2. Place all ingredients for the brownies in a high speed blender or food processor, and blend until completely smooth.
  3. Pour batter into the baking dish and smooth evenly throughout. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the brownies.
  4. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing into 16 brownies! Brownies can be served by themselves or you can top them off with ice cream, melted chocolate, and/or mini chocolate chips!

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PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies

PaleOMG Black Bean Brownies


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Oh, Hi! I’m Juli.

I’m a food hoarder. And a really bad dancer. If you don’t know me well, you will probably not understand my humor. Therefore, I apologize ahead of time. Thanks for listening to my ramblings of my ever-changing life and trusting my kitchen mishaps. Your trust in me is appreciated.


59 thoughts on “Black Bean Brownies”

  1. YESSSS!!! I have been waiting for you to come up with a black bean brownie recipe! Can’t wait to give this a whirl.

    Thanks for all that you do and all of the hilarious, positive, upbeat and non-judgmental energy that you put out into the world. Enjoy your hotel respite — it is well deserved!

  2. I was just telling my husband last night that I would hurt someone for a brownie and then this today! Its a sign, no need for anyone to get hurt! You’ve done a good thing here:)

  3. So so so excited for these! You’re awesome, and an inspiration to so many. Don’t let any of those Carols make you believe otherwise!

    1. These are darn good brownies! Even my finicky 4 year old daughter loved them. I eill make tgese again and again.
      Thank you, Juli!

  4. I love your post so much. So much so I almost want to get to know you better, not in a creepy psycho way where I would have to make any actual eye contact, but the way this reads I feel like I just wrote it myself. 99% of the time I scroll past the ridiculous chatter before the recipe.. like I don’t CARE if your great grandmother inspired you or about your childhood in Manila..just gimme the recipe!!! However with yours I was compelled to read the entire thing. I usually don’t mess around with unconventional ingredients but I’m looking to try alternatives to my usual faves.
    I love your writing style, it’s very engaging and entertaining. Now I must make this recipe for sure.

  5. Made these tonight and they were friggin’ delicious! This was the first time I’ve ever heard of black cocoa so I didn’t have that on hand, but I used Dutch cocoa powder and it worked. Other than the cocoa swap, I followed the rest of the recipe exactly. Yum!

      1. Delicious and didn’t make me feel like shit

        Love these!!! Brownies are my weakness but they always make me feel like shit. And don’t give me some fuckin almond and coconut flour recipe because those are not the same. I only baked them 40 min because I wanted them a little fudgy. I was afraid the black beans would dry out if over cooked (I think I would have been right), but these totally hit the spot! My husband didn’t love them, but who really values husband’s opinions on brownies anyway?! Thanks again Juli, you are the bomb!!

    1. Baked 50min in a 9” cake pan because that’s what I had. Followed all ingredients to the letter. Fudgy rich perfection!

  6. Good morning! I’ve been following your blog for years and have picked up some of my favorite go-to paleo recipes here. (Thanks!) So, of course I was surprised to see black bean brownies, but because you OBVIOUSLY cook, on your word, I ordered the ingredients. I’m confident they’ll turn out great. I started the Bean Protocol shortly after beginning a “dry” month, wanting to give my liver not just a break, but a spa vacation :). I’m so glad you’re posting bean-centric recipes and are open-minded to changes that WORK! Yesterday I did a riff on Japanese Azuki Bean Ice Cream, using (no salt added) cannellini beans and oat milk. I don’t have issues with dairy, so I added a bit of organic heavy cream. With organic cacao powder, maple syrup, vanilla extract and a pinch of sea salt, the taste was amazing, although the texture was a teensy bit “beany.” My husband (a big ice cream eater) loved it and wisely asked me to not disclose the secret ingredient. You seem to enjoy your ice cream, so thought I’d pass it along…. Thanks for your candor and flexibility!!

    1. awesome, the bean protocol is amazing!! just know this isn’t a bean protocol recipe since it contains sugar and fat, it simply is a recipe with beans in it. if you’re looking to stick to a strict bean protocol, you’ll want to cut out sugar, then also fat whenever you’re consuming your beans

  7. This may be a silly question, do black beans have to be cooked before using? I got mine from a CSA so not out of a can. Not sure if that makes a difference!

  8. For everyone asking about the flax egg, I made these two days ago with a flax egg and they came out alllrriiiggghhttt. They didn’t set up the same way that using an egg would have. I also baked them longer, about 60 minutes, because the middle wasn’t setting up. Essentially they stayed crazy gooey until they fully cooled and will not cut up real pretty but still fucking delicious

    1. have you ever tried the egg replacer from bob’s red mill? i wonder if that would work any better. i’ve used that in previous recipes and it’s worked great, i just haven’t tried it with this one

  9. Stoppppp…SO good! I may eat the whole pan! Didn’t have the dark cacao powder but regular worked just great! Thank you thank you for another fabulous recipe!

  10. These brownies are so amazing! So glad to have an alternative to the GF brownies I’ve been making. Thanks Juli!

  11. Hi Juli,

    I’m excited to make this recipe! Only issue is that I live in Mexico and it’s hard to find canned black beans without salt (which were readily available in the states). Thoughts on how this might impact the recipe? Drain thoroughly and leave the salt out? Or just make some black beans myself?

    Thanks for your thoughts!

  12. Can’t wait to make these next week when the black cocoa powder is delivered. Don’t worry about the people who don’t like the addition of bean recipes. I have been following your site for several years now not because I follow a paleo diet but because I like your attitude, great healthy recipes, and all the other awesome content you provide. You and your brand, site, what have you is so much more than just paleo. Keep kicking ass and forget the haters. <3

  13. A girlfriend of mine actually brought these over the other night for fuel – we just moved into a new house and with a toddler (aka tornado), moving has been stressful AF. My gf and I have been reading along with you since the beginning and Julie omg… you freaking NAILED this recipe (let the record show we love pretty much every recipe of yours but damn. I don’t think I can ever go back to an almond flour brownie after tasting the fudge deliciousness you’ve created. Also – I now want to sneak away to a hotel and be left the EFF alone for a night. Thanks for the inspo!

  14. Oh hey girl. Do they have to be black beans? I am in Tanzania on a long-term work assignment, hard to find canned beans but I’ve been soaking regular degular dried beans and then just cooking them as I normally would. BC I’M FUCKING AROUND W THE BEAN PROTOCOL. I did a Whole30 in Jan and basically everything that they said was going to happen DID happen except for my skin. Major bummer but I read your resources on the BP and think I’m starting to see a difference! I realize these have sugar but maybe I could cut it back and maybe I could just make them anyway. Cool? Cool. Anyway, lemme know if you have suggestions on the using dried beans front. Appreciate you!

  15. Well the batter tastes good. What’s left is in the oven 🙂
    I have been following you since the very beginning. I came to you for your Paleo recipes and remember your very first cooking video.
    A solid place to go for easy recipes, but I got really interested when you started adding beans.
    I have always had terrible skin on my arms and legs. Quitting coffee helped and beans seem to be adding further improvements – I have a gut feeling it’s more about the toxins and molds in coffee beans than the caffeine though as chocolate and matcha also contain caffeine and that does not appear to present a problem.
    Also curious to know if you still have your tonsils? They are increasingly considered an essential part of the lymphatic system and closely linked to detoxification.

  16. These are fantastic brownies and what I’ve been looking for! I didn’t have a great blender but it worked as I slowly combined everything. They have wonderful flavor to help any sweet tooth and enough to keep you satisfied. They aren’t super moist (everyone’s favorite word) but adding ice cream was great OR a homemade frosting could work if you needed something else. They are just fine on their own. I love this recipe. I will be making them again. Thanks Julie! #beanprotocolforever

  17. OK – these are the BOMB!! My family loves these brownies (maybe a little too much), however, we don’t feel too guilty eating them.

  18. Delicious!!!! I made these last night for my family and my brothers family, they’re gone. No one missed the gluten, alt flours or the dairy.
    EVERYONE, do yourself a favor and make these immediately.

    Next I might try subbing half the oil for applesauce. With the peanut butter I think they’ll remain plenty moist (sorry for the gross word)

  19. Had to order black cocoa since apparently no one carries it, but it was worth the wait!! These were delicious. Thank you for always sharing your creativity with food. One question, is it best to store them on the counter or in the fridge? Wasn’t sure if any of the ingredients or consistency would be effected either way. Thanks again!

  20. Holy crap these brownies didn’t even last a day in my house!
    I managed to sneak some into the fridge and they were *chef’s kiss* so good. I love that they have the added fiber of the beans and no flour at all!

  21. I’m terrified of attempting brownies at altitude given my previous fails after moving to Denver awhile ago. Did you have to make any adjustments in altitude or is it good to go as is? Thanks again for your recipes – just made the Buffalo chicken casserole last week and it’s being added to my regular rotation, so freakin good!!!

  22. I want to say thank you for using the word fuck; and deciding to use beans in a bean hating world. I was just introduced to your website yesterday and I am looking forward to all the things you share!!!

  23. I made these on Saturday. It’s now Tuesday and they’re all gone. 🙂

    I used leftover cashew butter, coconut oil and semi-sweet chocolate chips (b/c that’s what I had on hand), and they turned out delicious. I did end up pulling them out of the oven somewhere between 20-30 minutes because I really wanted a gooey center, but that’s my personal preference. We don’t have a square glass baking dish, so I used my regular square baking pan and added parchment and had no issues. Also added a few chocolate chips on top because, of course you should do that. 10/10 will be making these again!

  24. Delicious! I didn’t melt the chocolate chips, just threw em in the blender with everything else. Turned out great!

  25. This recipe is amazzzzing! Trying it out as blondies today and using pinto beans and white chocolate chips.

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