By Bridget

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Gluten-free baking can be tricky. Between funky after tastes and too crumbly textures, there have certainly been times where I just want to throw in the towel and give up baked goods altogether.

Recently, however, I discovered how effective starch alternatives can be! Sneaking vegetables, beans, and fruits into baked goods has been a popular trend lately, especially among the healthy eating community. Although I was initially skeptical, I finally decided to do a baking experiment of my own, using black beans as a substitute for flour in brownies – and they were a success!

I simply combined black beans, cocoa powder, sugar, eggs, and applesauce, blended until the consistency was similar to traditional brownie batter. I then mixed in some chocolate chips (more chocolate makes everything better…) and baked the brownies at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

The end product was incredible. The brownies were moist and fudgey without being too gooey or too crumbly. They were easy to cut and didn’t have an odd aftertaste at all!

What’s even better is the nutritional value of black beans! Beans are rich in soluble fiber, meaning they help with digestive health (which most Celiacs need, especially if you’re new on the bandwagon or have recently suffered some accidental contamination). As opposed to traditional desserts, these baked goodies actually have some pretty good nutritional value!

If you’re feeling festive, smash up a peppermint candy cane and sprinkle it on top of the brownies before baking to add an extra minty crunch to your GF (and dairy free!) brownies!