I have always been one to eat several small meals throughout the day. I could never make it from breakfast at 6am to lunch at noon without a few snacks in between!
Now that I'm feeding a growing baby, my snacks are even more important. I'm always looking for more protein, fiber and energy to get through the day.
When I found these delectable, chocolatey brownies, I knew I had to add them to the snack rotation! I came upon the recipe in a wonderful cookbook called Kicking Cancer in the Kitchen. It is packed with healthy recipes to keep your body strong and your taste buds satisfied. The first time I made these treats, I sent them off to a friend in the midst of chemotherapy. When I looked at the ingredients (and realized how delicious they are), I knew they'd be great for pregnant moms, athletes, nursing moms, and busy folks who eat on the go, too. They're packed with fiber, protein, vitamins and antioxidants.
They're easy to make (you just need a food processor) and they are very versatile. You can put in any combination of nuts and dried fruit that suits your fancy. Just remember to get good quality bittersweet or dark chocolate! The darker it is, the more antioxidants you'll get!
If you like them fudgy, like I do, then keep them in the refrigerator. If you like them warm and gooey, then warm one up for a few seconds in the microwave. Then pour yourself a glass of you favorite milk and enjoy!
Chocolate Energy Brownies
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x9 inch pan with coconut oil.
1 12oz package of bittersweet or dark chocolate chips (Ghiradelli is good)
3 T unrefined coconut oil
1 can organic black beans, drained and rinsed (I use Eden's organics - BPA free cans)
3 *flax eggs
3/8 cup local maple syrup
generous 1/2 cup rolled oats (you can get local!)
2 t baking powder
3/4 cup pecans and walnuts, mixed
1/2 c dried cranberries
dash of salt
Melt the chocolate with the coconut oil in the microwave or on the stove. Transfer to a food processor. Add all remaining ingredients except nuts and fruit. Blend until smooth. Stir in nuts and fruit. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 45 - 50 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean. Cool. Serve warm or refrigerate for several hours before serving if you want a firm, fudgy brownie.
*whisk 3 T ground flax seeds with 9 T warm water and let sit for five minutes to thicken.