These healthier, Flourless Mocha Brownies have a secret ingredient. Adding beans helped boost the protein without compromising flavor.

I think it was about a year ago when I jotted down a recipe for the garbanzo bean brownies my sister had made and raved about. I was dubious. I humored her. I lost that scrap of paper with the recipe. No biggie as I knew I’d find a healthy brownie recipe to bake. 

Flourless Mocha Brownies stacked on a small white pedestal

Flourless Mocha Brownies with Beans

When the blog theme of “Beantastic” came up, guess what came to mind? Yes, I was ready to make a dessert with beans. Though I was not sure the family would be on board! I was going to keep it secret so they’d at least take a bite.

Close vies of a stack of Flourless Mocha Brownies

How to Make a Healthy Brownie Recipe

I need to be very cautious about adding coffee to any of my chocolate desserts. I can get away with Kahlua, a coffee liqueur, but the hubby takes umbrage when I’m heavy-handed with the espresso powder. PRO-Tip: The addition of coffee is ideal for accentuating the flavor of chocolate.  I knew these bean brownies might need a little boost in that department. You can add as much as 2 tablespoons of instant coffee for a bold mocha flavor, but 2 teaspoons will offer a subtle, yet satisfying coffee undertone.

I packed some goodies in my suitcase on a recent trip to Denver, including these bean brownies. I knew my sister, Katie, loved them (she’s a yoga instructor, crunchy granola type), but would my youngest sister give her approval? Yup, Maddy was definitely a fan. The gang at home sampled but I got the feeling they like my beanless brownies a tad better.

The texture is dense and fudgy, maybe a touch different from your classic brownie, but without any clue that there was a can of beans used instead of flour. There is one caveat. I found them difficult to slice as they have a thin crumbly crust over the dense center.

If you’re looking for a healthier way to get your chocolate fix, you’ll definitely want to make a batch of these Flourless Mocha Brownies. We’ll be back to our regularly scheduled high calorie, decadence tomorrow.

More Healthy Desserts:

Flourless Mocha Brownies | Healthier Brownies made with Garbanzo Beans #SundaySupper

Flourless Mocha Brownies

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Yield 16 servings

A healthier brownie recipe with a surprise ingredient


  • 8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 15-ounce can of garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee (may increase for stronger mocha flavor)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Line 9x9 baking pan with non-stick foil or spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 350º.
  3. Gently microwave chocolate till melted and smooth. Cool slightly.
  4. Add beans, eggs, instant coffee, oil and vanilla to food processor. Process till smooth.
  5. Add brown sugar, baking powder and salt and process till combined, scraping down sides as needed. Blend in chocolate.
  6. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth the surface with an offset spatula. Bake 30-35 minutes or till toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbs. Don't overbake. Cool completely, then cut and serve.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 brownie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 159Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 95mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 3gSugar: 15gProtein: 4g


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Side view of Flourless Mocha Brownies on a small ceramic pedestal