This recipe for chickpea brownies is my new go-to for when I’m craving something chocolatey but want something a bit healthier than traditional brownies. Yes, they’re made with chickpeas but you can’t taste them one bit! They create a rich and fudgy texture alongside a few other natural ingredients. The result is a delicious gluten free and vegan brownie that tastes way too good to be true.
How to incorporate chickpeas into brownies (without the taste!)
I know, chickpeas in brownies is an odd concept but trust me when I say IT WORKS! Chickpeas are high in starch and protein, creating a really rich and delicious brownie batter that is so tempting to eat with a spoon (I will not judge if that is you eat the whole bowl).
But how does it work? First and foremost, it’s very important to ensure the flavor and texture of chickpeas goes completely undetected in these chickpea brownies. It’s all in how the chickpeas are prepped.
The chickpeas are first cooked in a mixture of water and baking soda. This concoction is boiled until the chickpeas become SUPER tender, allowing them to blend seamlessly into the batter.
As for the baking soda, the acid helps break down the shells of the chickpeas. This both helps with blending and also mellows out the chickpea flavor.
After the chickpeas are boiled and then simmered for about 15 minutes, they are drained and added to a food processor. Blended with the other wet ingredients, the chickpeas quickly blend into a very smooth consistency. Zero bits, chunks, or flavor detected!
How to make chickpea brownies
Once the chickpeas are prepped, now all that’s left is to blend the batter. Yes, the batter is blended and not stirred which makes this chickpea brownie recipe SUPER easy.
The cooked chickpeas are blended alongside these wet ingredients:
- Pure maple syrup – It’s important to use PURE maple syrup. Traditional pancake syrup is basically corn syrup so it has a different flavor and consistency. Plus, pure maple syrup tastes way better!
- Natural sunflower seed butter – I prefer natural sunflower seed butter for this recipe for a few reasons. One, it makes this a nut-free brownie recipe. Two, sunflower seed butter is fairly mild in flavor but super creamy. It blends seamlessly into the batter and doesn’t compete with the chocolate.
- Vanilla extract – This is for an extra kick of flavor!
- Non dairy milk – For a nut-free recipe, opt for coconut or oat milk. Otherwise, any non dairy milk will work!
After the wet ingredients are blended, the batter will be very thin and watery. But after oat flour and cocoa powder are added, the brownie batter turns rich and fudgy just like traditional brownies.
Baking chickpea brownies
The batter is baked in a greased and lined 8×8 square baking dish. In other words, give the entire pan a light spritz of coconut oil spray (I prefer coconut oil here as it’s a healthier alternative to vegetable oil spray).
Once coated, place a sheet of parchment paper inside the pan so that it covers the bottom and two sides. Allow the paper to reach up and over the sides for easy removal later on.
Now, the batter does not budge when baked. This is why it’s important to smooth out the batter as even as possible before baking. Otherwise, you’ll be left with some pretty uneven slices!
These brownies only need to bake for 15 minutes. They’re done when the surface is dark and dull. Press a finger into the surface to feel some resistance, which is another tell that they’re ready.
Allow the brownie to cool for about 30 minutes at room temp, then another hour in the fridge. It’s important that the brownies are fully cooled before adding the ganache and slicing. Otherwise the ganache will melt and the slices will fall apart.
Healthy chickpea brownie toppings
Chocolate ganache is my personal favorite addition to these brownies. It accompanies the already fudgy consistency of the brownies and adds even more rich chocolate flavor.
If ganache isn’t your thing or you prefer something a bit lighter, here are a few other options:
- Sprinkle chocolate chip on top of the batter before baking. The chips adds just a hint of extra sweetness but are not as rich as a layer of ganache.
- Spread a layer of sunflower seed butter or any nut or seed butter on top of the cooled brownies.
- Melt down 1/4 cup of chocolate with 1/2 tsp coconut oil. Drizzle over the cooled brownies and top with flaky sea salt.
What can be substituted for the sunflower seed butter?
If you have a different nut or seed butter on hand, no need to go out of your way to grab a fresh jar of sunflower seed butter. Any nut or seed butter can be used, as long as it’s natural and made with only one ingredient.
What can be substituted for the oat flour?
If you don’t have oat FLOUR, you can easily make your own by blending oats in a food processor. But if oats aren’t an option for you, try swapping in almond flour. I haven’t tested this myself, but oat flour and almond flour are great substitutes for one another.
How to store chickpea brownies
After the brownies are frosted with ganache and sliced, they can be stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator where they will keep for up to a week.
For more healthier dessert recipes, check out my:
- Healthy Brownie Cookie Dough Bars
- Healthy Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Bars
- Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- Homemade Peanut Butter Cups
Make sure to tag me @butternutbakery on Instagram and leave a review below if you make these fudgy chickpea brownies. To pin this recipe and save it for later, you can use the button on the recipe card, the buttons above or below this post, or on any of the photos above. Happy baking!Print