• Ariel Warren, RDN, CDCES

THE BEST Flourless Low Carb Fudgy Black Bean Brownies (Vegan)

Black Bean Brownies are rich, lower in carbs, full of fiber and protien, and crazy delicious. Yes, I did it, I made those most delicious, and yet, somehow still healthy and diabetic-friendly brownies. This is a proud moment for me. Just sayin'.

As you are probably well-aware, I LOVE to hide superfoods and healthy ingredients to my recipes. The healthy ingredients in these brownies are:

  1. Black Beans

  2. Cacao Powder

  3. Peanut Flour (crazy high in protein)


Lately, I have been on a plant-based diet. Why? Well, I am 14 weeks pregnant, and apparently cheese and meat makes me super nauseous. Eating plant-based/vegan isn't difficult, but to eat well, and getting enough protein can be a little more difficult than on a regular diet that consists of dairy and meat. Going plant-based has had a great effect on my sensitivity to insulin (I will talk about this in detail in a future post). Sorry for the tangent, but this peanut flour, and specifically this peanut flour from Protein Plus, is one of my top secrets of getting protein in while eating plant-based.

Protein Plus Peanut Flour, ONLY contains peanuts, not extra salt, sugar, or any whacky ingredients/chemicals. In 1/4 cup serving, this peanut flour has 16 grams of protein, 4 grams of NET carbohydrates (8 grams total - 4 grams of dietary fiber), AND only 110 calories. I'm not a calorie counter, but for those who do, that's quite a bit of protein for only 110 calories. Oh, and it's plant-based so it is naturally higher in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals than typical whey-based protein powder. I like to use this Peanut Flour in green smoothies, oatmeal, and baked goods to easily (and tastefully) boost my protein.


Besides the peanut flour, I replaced cocoa powder with high-antioxidant cacao powder, and the got a wonderful moist texture that usually comes from flour, eggs, sugar, and saturated fats --> from black beans. Yes, beans!! Holy cow, do I love beans. They are loaded with plant-based protein and dietary fiber. So yes, they are so good for stable blood sugar and weight loss because they are so dang filling.

Black Beans Nutrition (1/2 cup): 117 calories. 21 total grams of carbohydrates. 7 1/2 grams of dietary fiber. 7 1/2 grams of protein.


Canned beans can be just has healthy as dry beans that have been cooked, just make sure to rinse them because sodium is added as a preservative or flavoring. If you are worried about BPA, go for the BPA/organic beans. I cook dry beans because they are so cheap, BUT sometimes, life gets busy, and I just grab beans from the can, and rinse them.


Servings: 8 Servings

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 10 min

Total Time: 20 min



  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans; or 1 (15 oz.) rinsed and drained

  • 1/2 cups peanut flour

  • 1/3 cup raw cacao powder*

  • 1 tbsp ground flax seeds**

  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 3/4 cup granulated stevia (Pyure) (not sweet enough, add more)

  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar (or white distilled vinegar)

  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 cup chopped dark cacao/cocoa bar***


  • 2 1/2 tbsp nut butter (peanut or almond)

  • 1/4 cups chopped almonds/walnuts

Cacao Powder*: Don't have any? You can use regular cocoa powder.

Ground Flax Seeds**: If you use a power blender, you can use whole flax seeds, just blend extra long.

Dark Cacao/Cocoa Bars***: Don't have it, use baker's chocolate, or any dark chocolate bar.


1. Preheat oven to 350ºF and lightly spray with olive oil or lightly wipe muffin tins coconut oil.

2. With a high-power blender (I use a refurbished Blendtec), add all brownie ingredients, BUT the chopped cacao bar, and pulse until smooth(rinsed black beans, peanut flour, raw cacao powder, ground flax seeds, vanilla, granulated stevia, balsamic vinegar, and baking soda). Stop to scrap the sides, and keep pulsing until it is completely even and smooth. The batter with be rich and thick.

3. Add broken pieces of the cacao/cocoa bar into the brownie batter and pulse a few times to mix them in.

4. Scoop the batter into 8 muffin cups. The batter is thick, so make sure to evenly spread the batter in each muffin tin. Add 1 tsp of nut butter and sprinkle a tsp of chopped nuts on each brownie. Take a toothpick and slightly swirl. nut butter and nuts into each muffin tin brownie.

5. Set timer for 25 min. The tops should be slightly cracked, and the center should feel relatively firm to the light touch. Remove the brownies and allow to cool for about 5 min.

6. Allow the brownies to cool completely before attempting to cut them into squares, as they are very fragile when warm. Enjoy with a tall cold glass of Unsweetened Almond or Cashew Milk.

7. Store the rest in the fridge, or freeze them for a delicious frozen brownie. They will last up t a week in the fridge, and up tot 3 months in the freezer.

Nutrition facts:

Per Serving. Total Calories: 174. Total Fat: 8g (Saturated: 2g, Monounsaturated: 2g, Polyunsaturated: 1g, Trans: 0g). Cholesterol: 0mg*. Sodium: 52mg. Potassium: 248mg. Total Carbohydrates: 17g (Dietary Fiber: 6g, Sugars: 2g). Protein: 10g.

*Vegan foods do not contain cholesterol.

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As always, if you are having trouble with your diabetes and/or weight loss, email me or visit my website so we can figure out a customized game plan based entirely on you. I'm 100% here for you and understand all your frustrations because I am a T1D and a Registered Dietitian.

When we talk, I will look in detail at what, when, and the amount you are eating, along with what you are doing for exercise (or not doing, we'll be honest with each other). Together we will analyze your blood sugar (use your Dexcom Clarity reports if you have a Dexcom) and together we will decipher why you are getting your frustrating highs and lows. After a single session, you will have answers and a much better clarity of why your blood sugars react they way they do to your food, exercise, and lifestyle.

After talking, we will stay in touch, and you will have direct access to me for any questions. I deeply care about each and everyone of my clients.

If you just have a general question, send me an email and I will get back to you ASAP.


Your friend & Dietitian,

Ariel Warren, RD, CD, T1D

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For more articles from me and other health professionals, check out HapiBody.com. On HapiBody, you can always ask ANY health question and be answered by a professional. HapiBody also has great healthy recipes for you and your whole family and effective at-home workouts for weight loss and full body toning.

Lastly, if you want to join a T1D FB Group who is supportive and full of great workouts and blood sugar challenges, join "Getting Fit with T1D". Right now we are having a 1 month HbA1c challenge.

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