Guiltless, Flourless Brownie Cupcakes

I wanted to call these brownie cupcakes “Cray Cray Brownies” because they are crazy delicious with ridiculously healthy ingredients! Shhh,don’t spread this around but there are black beans and spinach in them! What?! Cray cray you say? Now you understand my first name choice; however, for the sake of posterity and that things on the internet last forever, I decided to go with a more sensible name. Now on to business! These are delicious. Period. You will not believe what you are eating. They roll in at 250 calories a piece but they are chock full of nutrients, fiber, protein and resistant starch. If you weren’t aware, beans are a resistant starch! Which simply means that the calories stated for them are actually much lower because your body can’t store the starch and fiber and most of those high caloric numbers associated with beans, just pass through your system. So with using bananas and beans instead of flour, you have a guiltless and gooey brownie cupcake! Just trust me and try these! They are also very filling and totally satisfied my never ending sweet tooth!

Guiltless, Flourless Brownie Cupcakes

Prep time: 45 mins. Servings: 12
Calories: 250 per serving

Ingredients:
3 bananas
2 cups canned or cooked black beans
2 cups raw baby spinach
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk
1 cup peanut butter
4 tbs real maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup organic shredded coconut (optional)
1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips

Turn oven to 350. Rinse black beans in a strainer or colander, under cool water for 2 minutes. Set aside to drain.
Purée bananas and spinach in a blender with 1-2 tablespoons of almond milk. Pour into a bowl and add peanut butter, vanilla, and maple syrup. Mix until smooth. Your mixture will be a funky green color because of the spinach but don’t worry about that.
Blend black beans and the remainder of the almond milk until very smooth. Pour into the banana mix and stir well. The batter should have a fluffy brownie batter feel to it but will still have that funky color. However, this is where it all starts to get good! Add the cocoa powder and stir until it is fully mixed-now your batter has the pretty chocolate look you were hoping for! Fold in the coconut (if you’re not a fan, just leave the coconut out!) and the chocolate chips.
Grease or line a 12 cup muffin pan. I had a few cupcake liners so I ended doing half and half. I was pleasantly surprised how easily the brownie cupcakes came out of the pan and the liners. Spoon the batter into the 12 cups, filling all the way to the top. These won’t rise much so it’s important to fill the cups. I sprinkled half of mine with a little extra coconut.
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Turn up to 375 after the first 15 minutes and cook for 10 more minutes. The extra heat encourages the cupcakes to rise without over baking or drying them out.
I let mine cool for 10 minutes and then removed them from the pan and enjoyed them warm!

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