Dessert: Secret Ingredient Brownies


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Dessert: Secret Ingredient Brownies

Secret Ingredient Brownies - Girl Zone

If you love decadent, fudgy brownies, but don’t want to spend an entire day’s fat-and-calorie budget on one chocolate treat, put aside your skepticism about the surprising ingredient in this recipe and give it a try. Puréed canned beans are the “magic” ingredient.  They replace half of the butter, with canola oil standing in for the remainder. Additional fat-trimming techniques include: substituting cocoa for some of the chocolate and two egg whites for one of the eggs. For whole grain benefits, we swapped white flour for whole-wheat. The result: a brownie with fewer than 100 calories and one-forth of the saturated fat of the traditional recipe. And, the best part: no one will guess that this is a healthy brownie!


  • 1/2 Cup whole-wheat flour
  • 3 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 Cup drained red kidney beans or black beans, rinsed
  • 1 Large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 Large egg whites
  • 1 Cup sugar
  • 1/4 Cup canola oil
  • 1 Ounce (1 square) unsweetened chocolate, melted
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla exract
  • 2 Tablespoons (1/2 oz) chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
  • 1 Ounce bittersweet chocolate or 2 Tablespoons chocolate chips, melted (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat an 8x8-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place flour and salt in medium bowl. Sift on cocoa. Whisk to blend.
  2. To make batter in a food processor: Place beans in food processor and puree. Add egg, egg whites, sugar, oil, unsweetened chocolate and vanila, and process until blended, stopping several times to scrape down sides of work bowl. Add flour mixture and pulse several times, just until dry ingredients are moistened. (Alternatively, to make batter in a blender: Combine beans, egg, egg whies, sugar, oil, unsweetened chocolate and vanilla in blender, and process until beans are pureed. Add bean mixture to flour mixture and mix with rubber spatula until dry ingredients are moistened).
  3. Scrape batter into prepared baking dish, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with nuts, if desired. Bake until brownies are set aroudn the edges and sligtly soft in the center, 18 to 22 minutes. Let cool completely in pan. Drizzle with chocolate, if desired. Let sand until chocolate has set. Cut into bars.