Cheesecake Black Bean Brownies

February 3, 2014

While everyone was stuffing their faces with cheese dip and pizza on Sunday, I was shopping for bathroom tile.  Being an adult = rough stuff.  The weekend wasn’t  total loss though, because I had my vegi-versary dinner party on Saturday.  (Side note: how many of you are wishing I’d shut up about my vegi-versary already?  It’s almost as bad as a birthday for me!)  There were some big highlights in the dinner (okay and one low light — these maple bourbon Brussels sprouts because I didn’t cook off any of the bourbon.  Each bite was like taking a shot, oopsies.  Follow the recipe as written and don’t try to take a shortcut and bake off the bourbon in the oven.  Doesn’t work).

Cheesecake Black Bean Brownies

On to the highlights those.  These. Brownies.  I already knew they’d be a huge success because I baked a pan a week or two ago and polished it off as quickly as humanly possible.  The base for the brownies was Chocolate Covered Katie’s black bean brownies.  That girl definitely knows how to do chocolate right.  The result is a super fudgy, delicious brownie that no one would ever guess is remotely good for them.  The brownies themselves are gluten free, but if there will be other gluten snacks near them, I recommend making them cupcake style as described so the liners can help protect from cross contamination.

Cheesecake Black Bean Brownies

The party also included the Beeroness’s beer cheese dip as an appetizer.  My invitation to any and every social event is contingent on bringing this dip.  True story.  The other app was my Greek salsa with Josh’s pita chips.  The actual dinner was butternut squash mac and cheese, the aforementioned Brussels, and moussaka (no recipe for this on the blog yet, but sooooon you’ll have two versions!).  These brownies were easily the most coveted item of the night, with 24 brownies being consumed between 9 people, but I also put out CCK’s cookie dough dip.  Because I’m a fantastic (and totally modest) host, everything except the beer cheese dip was gluten free in addition to vegetarian.  Everything was devoured pretty much completely, which has left me a little sad without leftovers.

Cheesecake Black Bean Brownies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 12

  • 1½ cups black beans (equivalent to a 15 oz can, rinse VERY well)
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • ½ cup quick oats
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ⅓ cup pure maple syrup, agave, or honey
  • 2 tbsp. sugar or additional maple/agave/honey
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup chocolate chips (type of chip will determine brownie flavor, see note)
  • 8 oz low fat or vegan cream cheese
  • 5 tbsp. powdered sugar
  • 2 drops vanilla extract
  • zest of half of a lemon

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spritz a 9″x9″ pan with nonstick spray or line a cupcake tin with liners spritzed lightly with nonstick spray.
  2. In a food processor or high powered blender (like a Ninja or Vitamix), combine beans, cocoa, oats, salt, sweeteners, oil, vanilla extract, and baking powder. Blend until smooth, will take 5 – 10 minutes of continuous processing.
  3. Add chips and pulse to incorporate.
  4. Spread into an even layer in the pan or cupcake tin.
  5. In a bowl, microwave cream cheese for about 30 seconds, until easily stirred. Stir in powdered sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest.
  6. Top brownies with cream cheese mixture. Stir in lightly.
  7. Bake for approximately 25 minutes. Cool for at least ten minutes before serving. For best results, cool and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving (I like to cool mine over night before serving).

Brownie portion based off of Chocolate Covered Katie’s black bean brownies.
The type of chocolate chips will greatly determine the flavor of your brownie — dark chocolate will make a darker chocolate brownie, milk chocolate will produce a sweeter brownie, etc.

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/12 recipe Calories: 190 Fat: 5 Carbohydrates: 30 Fiber: 3 Protein: 7


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    Diana May 20, 2016

    I have made CCK’s black bean brownies before, and I really loved them. But I think I love these cream cheese ones more! I baked mine for 28 minutes, and they still didn’t seem quite done…until after spending a night in the fridge, where they hardened up nicely! I probably could’ve just baked them for 25 minutes and ended up with similar results. I used semisweet chocolate chips.The brownies were delicious cold or warmed up slightly in the microwave.

    The Domestic Rebel Feb 06, 2014

    Is it normal to be a little skuuurrred of black bean brownies? But then again, I trust you. And I also trust anything with a layer of cheesecake, soooo it’s a wash. WANT!

      Kelly Feb 06, 2014

      Hayley, I normally don’t tell people they’re made with black beans until after they’ve inhaled a good half dozen of them. Seriously, you’ll love them. And they’re good for you, so you can totally eat more or double the cheesecake layer 😉

    Christie - Food Done Light Feb 04, 2014

    I have been meaning to try black bean brownies forever. I’m going to do it now. These look so delicious.

      Kelly Feb 04, 2014

      Christie, it’s crazy how delicious they are! I hope you try them out. It’s impossible to tell there are beans when you blend them up just right. Just pure fudgy deliciousness

    Joel A. Feb 03, 2014

    I would love to indulge in these anytime.

    Em @ Love A Latte Feb 03, 2014

    I’m so excited these are vegan!!! I think I have all the ingredients in my house right now! Hope shopping for tile went well. I was doing that too a few weeks ago. Just think how nice it will look once it’s in!

      Kelly Feb 03, 2014

      Em – what brand of vegan cream cheese is your fav? I used Daiya the first time I made these and was seriously impressed with the results! I’m glad to have the tiles all picked out and paid for now, it’s been a source of stress hanging over my head since November. Definitely time to get moving on that project 🙂