Gluten Free Almond Chickpea Blondies, Healthy, Dessert
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It has been a bit of time since I posted a new recipe…between going on vacation with my family, having a sick baby, hurricane Irma, and of course work, time has been pretty limited. But the hurricane is gone, things have calmed down and we have survived. Irma didn’t cause any damage on our property and our electricity was only off for a little more than a day so we were pretty lucky. Especially when considering all of the downed trees and fences in our neighborhood.

 

Gluten Free Almond Chickpea Blondies

 

Because of all our hurricane prep, I now find myself up to my eyeballs in canned beans. I used a can of black beans to make burrito bowls for dinner last night and me and Baby V both had leftovers for lunch today… But i still have like 10 cans of various kinds of beans taking up precious space in my pantry. So I’m sure many of you in Florida are also facing a similar problem. And I have a few solutions. 1) Hurricane season is not over yet so you can always save them in your garage or some other place, or 2) Slowly try new recipes and experiment with them. If you choose option 2 (which is way more fun), I have some links to a few of my recipes for you and will also share my Almond Chickpea Blondies recipe. It is super almondy – so if you love almonds you will loooooove these. If you are not a huge fan of almonds then definitely check out the list below for other options for using up those canned beans. Oh and also I just want to mention how super super easy this recipe is. I love recipes where I dirty minimal dishes and basically just mix everything together and bake…these Almond Chickpea Blondies are just that type of recipe.

 

Gluten Free Almond Chickpea Blondies, Healthy, Dessert

 

 

Some of My Favorite Recipes with Canned Beans

Mediterranean Quinoa Bake – I use a combination of fresh and canned ingredients (including chickpeas) to make this simple flavorful vegetarian bake. Perfect for Meatless Monday or any other busy weeknight.

Coffee and Cream Brownies – Black bean brownies made with coffee and cream cheese to help hide the “bean” taste. Great for coffee and/or chocolate lovers.

Turkey Chili – Uses both kidney beans and black beans, and has some pretty great flavor.

Chicken and White Bean Soup with Veggies – The name pretty much says it all…

Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies – Definitely one of my favorite brownie recipes – classic combo of peanut butter and chocolate. Also… super easy.

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers – These are kinda like burrito bowls, except the bowl is a pepper. My favorite part though, is all the melty cheese…

 

Ok…and now for a new recipe :)

 

Gluten Free Almond Chickpea Blondies, Healthy, Dessert

 

 

Almond Chickpea Blondies

Ingredients

1 Can (16 oz) Reduced Sodium Chickpeas or Garbanzo Beans – Drained and Rinsed

1 Egg

1/2 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1/2 Cup Honey or Maple Syrup

1 Cup Almond Flour

1 Teaspoon Almond Extract

1/3 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray glass pan (8×8) with cooking spray. Add all ingredients except the chocolate chips to a good blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips and spoon onto prepared pan. Bake for approximately 35 minutes or until edges start to brown and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool before slicing.

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Black Bean Brownies
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Replacing all purpose flour in brownie recipes with black beans can be a great start to make brownies more nutritious (less refined flour, more plant based protein and fiber), but sometimes they can turn out less than appetizing. After trying my hand at many different desserts containing beans, I have found two important rules. First, you need to mask the bean flavor with other stronger complementary flavors. Second, make sure you have enough dry ingredients.  If you don’t follow those rules, you end up with mushy bean dessert. Lucky for you, I already did all the baking and testing so you don’t have to subject yourself to some of my previous awful recipes :)

 

Black Bean BrowniesBlack Bean Brownies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like peanut butter, you can check out my peanut butter black bean brownies here. But if coffee and cream brownies sound more your style read on…

 

 

Black Bean Brownies

I originally shunned away from the idea of using coffee in black bean brownies because I was afraid it would be an overpowering flavor and I am not a huge coffee drinker. However, coffee does have a lot of antioxidants and research suggests health benefits, including reducing your risk of type 2 diabetes and alzheimer’s disease. Additionally I received a sample of Kohana Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate from Kohana Coffee to participate in their recipe contest, so it seemed like the perfect time to give it a try. I’m really happy I did try because the coffee really amped up the chocolate flavor, masked the beans and didn’t make the brownies taste overly coffee-like. Bonus antioxidants in your dessert are always something to celebrate!

 

Coffee and Cream Brownies

Ingredients
1 Can of Reduced Sodium Black Beans- Drained and Rinsed
2 Large Eggs
3 Tablespoons Strong Coffee (I used Kohana Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate)
4 Ounces Reduced Fat Cream Cheese
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
3/4 Cups Granulated Sugar
1/2 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/3 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×13 inch glass baking pan with cooking spray. Add all ingredients except for chocolate chips into a good blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Pour into prepared glass pan and sprinkle chocolate chips over batter evenly. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool, slice and enjoy. Cover and keep refrigerated if saving for later.

***If you would like to vote for this recipe and/or my Berry Chocolate Iced Coffee recipe (it’s delicious too!) go to http://kohanacontest.com/contest/ and vote!

Black Bean Brownies
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Mini Pumpkin Cheesecake
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December is here and I know many of you will be going to holiday parties so I thought this would be a perfect time to post an easy recipe that you could bring to a party or have at your own party if you are hosting. When going to a cocktail party or bringing a dish to someone’s home, I like to try and keep things as simple as possible. By that, I mean if I am hosting, I don’t like making a huge mess in the kitchen before people come over. Alternatively, when I am bringing a dish to someone’s home, I don’t want to have to worry about serving it with forks, plates etc. Cookies work out well for this and I know a lot of people like to bring and make cookies around the holidays, so if that is your preference check out my Whole Grain Buckwheat (or Oatmeal) Cookies. If you are interested in a different type of bite sized dessert, read on to hear about my Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes….

 

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

 

So I found this recipe for mini cheesecakes made in cupcake tins here awhile ago and thought it was a great idea (already in perfect portion sizes and no serving, plate or fork necessary!). However, my husband is not really a cheesecake fan so I was waiting for the perfect opportunity to make and bring them somewhere. A few weeks ago we went to a “Friendsgiving” and I jumped at the chance to make them with a few slight adjustments to make them more thanksgiving themed. So basically instead of vanilla wafers for the crust, I used gluten free gingersnaps, removed the cottage cheese and added pumpkin puree, and added a few pumpkin pie spices to the batter. Adding the pumpkin puree did make the batter a little more liquidy, so I did have to cook it for a little longer, but the texture still turned out good and cheesecakey. Also, have I mentioned before that pumpkin is super good for you? Lots of vitamin A, fiber and low in calories :)

 

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

(Makes 30)

 

Ingredients

30 Cupcake/Muffin Liners

30 Gluten Free Gingersnap Cookies

16 Ounces of Neufchatel Cheese (or Reduced Fat Cream Cheese)

1 Cup Pumpkin Puree

4 Large Eggs

1/2 Cup Sugar

1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg

1/4 Teaspoon Allspice

2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and place rack in center of the oven. Place cupcake/muffin liners into cupcake tin and add 1 gingersnap cookie to each liner. Mix all remaining ingredients together with a mixer until smooth. Add 2 teaspoons batter to each liner and bake in oven for ~20 minutes or until cheesecakes are firm in the center. Allow to cool and refrigerate until ready to serve. If desired, you can top with whipped cream immediately before serving or make a crunchy pecan topping. To make a pecan topping you can simply sauté a 1/2 cup chopped pecans with 2 teaspoons maple syrup and 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon over medium heat for approximately 2 minutes or until topping is warm and fragrant. Sprinkle a few pieces on the top of each mini cheesecake.

 

Gluten Free Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

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