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Rocco's Brownies

From Now Eat This! come completely guilt-free, diet-friendly brownies.

Per Serving: 53 Calories, 1.6g Fat, 4g Protein, 8g Carbohydrates, 4mg Cholesterol, 3g Fiber, 94mg Sodium
Rocco's Brownies Photo
Yield: Serves 12


Yes, you are reading the ingredients list correctly: there are black beans in these brownies. You really have to taste the brownies to believe them. The beans add moisture and texture—not to mention fiber and protein. These brownies have such a great fudgy texture because the cocoa powder, and just a little espresso powder, are the only dry ingredients (besides a bit of Truvia). For an extra jolt of chocolate flavor and about 15 more calories, stir ¼ cup dark chocolate–covered cacao nibs (such as Kopali Organics) into the batter just before pouring it into the pan. These brownies are even better the next day. - Rocco DiSpirito

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1½ cups canned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon espresso powder
  • ¾ cup egg substitute
  • 2 tablespoons low-calorie sugar-free chocolate syrup, such as Walden Farms
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream, such as Breakstone’s
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 24 packets (84 g) Truvia or 8 tablespoons granulated Splenda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Spray an 8×8-inch glass baking dish with cooking spray.

  2. Combine the beans, cocoa powder, espresso powder, and egg substitute in the bowl of a food processor. Process until the mixture is smooth, about 2 minutes, scraping down the bowl halfway through.

  3. Add the chocolate syrup, sour cream, butter, Truvia, and vanilla. Process until all of the ingredients are combined, about 1 minute.

  4. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish, and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake for 28 to 30 minutes, turning the dish halfway through the baking time. A toothpick inserted in the center will come out with soft batter clinging to it.

  5. Let the brownies cool completely in the baking dish on a wire rack. Then cut into 12 squares and serve. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Source: NOW EAT THIS! a Ballantine Trade Paperback Original by Rocco DiSpirito (c) 2010 Spirit Media, LLC

Also from Now Eat This!, try Rocco's Flash-Fried Finger-Lickin' Chicken.

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(Page 2 of 3, 48 total comments)


I made the brownies yesterday. Ok! Its a matter of having to get use to something thats different. For the most part the texture was good. Thinking about next time cutting back on the espresso (seemed a bit strong) and adding more vanilla. Its going to take a little tweeking to get them to what my kids are use to and keep them at least 53cals.

posted Sep 10th, 2010 10:46 am


I saw the recipe on the Doctors and had to try.

Note: I followed the recipe minus the expresso powder. Instead I used vanilla instant coffee (comes in packets...took about 3 packets).

For being healthier than the normal alternative, I think these are great! I'm not sure why everyone is saying they are so bad. Of course they aren't like amazing, fat-loaded, sugar-loaded brownies most everyone would enjoy. Instead, these taste like dark chocolate (and in my case, vanilla) brownies that are light and satisfying.

Interesting enough my brownies looked like real brownies but I cut the tops (to break the dense look open). Seemed to mimic really well.

Finally, I am not a baker nor a great cook. I do random things and this seemed to turn out well for me. To those who still need a healthier, diabetic friendly option, do try these. Maybe substitute expresso powder with instant coffee.

posted Sep 6th, 2010 10:41 pm


Sad to find the comments on this site, after I had made the brownies. I watched the Dr. show this week with Rocco on promoting his book. Went out and bought it, because of how great everyone said the book was. Made the brownies today. NOT GOOD! Wish I had read reviews from average people before purchasing the book.

posted Sep 3rd, 2010 1:21 pm


Try this recipe! It is really good!!!

Black Bean Brownies RecipeServings: 9
Dense, fudgey and ultra-healthy, these brownies are a great alternative to traditional brownies! It's amazing how they taste like chocolate and fudge and not beans! Chef's Notes: Rolled oats run through the food processor may substituted for the instant oats. Use optional sugar if your bananas are still green and not very ripe.

?15 ounces black beans, drained and rinsed
?2 whole bananas
??? cup agave nectar
?¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
?1 tbsp cinnamon
?1 tsp vanilla extract
?¼ cup raw sugar (optional)
?¼ cup instant oats

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease anf 8x8" pan and set aside. Combine all ingredients, except oats, in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth, scrapping sides as needed. Stir in the oats and pour batter into the pan. Bake approx 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool before slicing Chef's Note: if you find these brownies are too soft or too fudgey, add another 1/4 cup oats or flour.

posted Aug 31st, 2010 7:24 pm



i think the big problem with this is that the 24pgs of truvia is so off!! if you read the start of the book(rocco's can't live-without ingredients) in the sugar substitutes he says that 4tsp of splenda is the same as 4pkgs of tuvia. if that is true then the recipe is wrong! it should only be 16 pkgs of truvia. maybe thats the problem? but omg i could not stand the smell of them! as a great chef i think he needs to tell his fans that there is a problem and how to fix it!! im a pastry chef and thats what i would do.

posted Jul 20th, 2010 8:01 pm



Surely there is a mistake in the recipe. They were bitter and horrid.

posted Jul 18th, 2010 3:11 pm



Don't waste your money; I was very disappointed with the recipe. They had a hearty chocolate flavor however I wouldn't describe these as "fudge-like"; the texture tends to be "mushy" and very unappealing to the tongue. I think I can find a far better recipe that will actually taste like a "true brownie".

posted Jun 29th, 2010 1:24 pm



It was horrible. It tasted ljust like i was eating a brick form of UNsweetened cocoa powder. Very blah.

posted Jun 20th, 2010 3:09 pm

Lisa P


We had tried other recipes in the book and they were fabulous! Try the fajitas, the enchiladas or the chicken with mango salsa. All excellent. The brownies-took one bite and spit it out! YUCK!

posted Jun 12th, 2010 3:17 pm

Kev in Montgomery


I agree with all other critics. The pictured brownies are no where near the actual product. There's no levening and they couldn't possibly match the picture. Shame on Rocco! I hope the other recipes are better.

posted Apr 26th, 2010 2:18 pm



Stop!! Don't make this brownie recipe. Every "thumbs down" comment here is totally correct. I am also a good baker, and, as everyone else said, these look nothing like the picture, and the taste is something vaguely like grainy chocolate tofu. Really bad grainy chocolate tofu.

posted Apr 23rd, 2010 10:47 pm

Jennifer Lewis


That photo is a lie! Do not waste your money and time on this poor excuse for a brownie. One bite was all it took. The rest ended up in the trash, where a raccoon flipped me off.

posted Apr 22nd, 2010 11:33 pm



Those brownies were the worst thing I have ever made and I know how to bake quite well. I thought perhaps I had left something out of the recipe but after checking it and this site I see I am not alone. The picture in the cookbook does not in any way resemble the flat, dull, pasty tasting bean cake that came from that recipe. It looked and tasted like a mud pie from my childhood. I was prepared and opened minded but this was beyond bad tasting.

posted Apr 18th, 2010 10:54 pm


try this....take a box of reduced sugar brownie mix (Pillsbury makes one), and puree a can of black beans and add to the mix (nothing else, don't drain beans). Bake according to box. You'll get the same taste as brownies but not as many calories. Kind of the same principal as Rocco, without buying unnecessary ingredients. Love Rocco and his books, just NOT the brownie recipe!

posted Apr 16th, 2010 10:36 am


I made them and was excited for my dad to eat them because he is a diabetic. He chewed the first bite and said he was done. They were horrible!!!!

posted Apr 14th, 2010 4:08 pm


The brownies were awful .

posted Apr 11th, 2010 8:48 pm



I think rocco baked a box of Duncan Hines brownies and used that as the picture for his cookbook. These are the worst things I've ever tasted, and I was so excited to try them

posted Apr 9th, 2010 4:39 pm



I spent SOOO much money on ingredients for these brownies and I was so disappointed that they were crap!!!! Really don't waste your time making these brownies they are horribale try the no pudge for $3.00 instead!

posted Apr 9th, 2010 9:24 am



OK, I bought the cookbook, and it was a success....until this recipe. At first, I was very upset at myself.....I thought I did something wrong or left out an ingredient. After reading other posts I no longer feel alone in my disappointment. Please help Rocco!!!!!!! I think there is a misprint in the cookbook or maybe some other explanantion. Thanks!

posted Apr 6th, 2010 8:46 pm



I purchased the cook book, made the brownie...I am off Cooking and Brownies. I am glad I found this site...I was going to make them again tonight because I thought I did something wrong...Like adding the wrong brand of Black Beans. Thank you

posted Apr 4th, 2010 10:01 pm


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