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Recipe corner: black bean brownie bites and winter smoothie bowl

Feb 03, 2020


Black Bean Brownie Bites

Don’t be afraid of the ingredients used to make these sweet treats. This recipe is a great alternative to a traditional brownie with less fat due to eliminating butter and oil. Enjoy these treats while also being cautious of portion control. With two brownie bites per serving, this recipe yields five dozen bites or 30 servings.


  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 2/3 cup black bean puree
  • ½ cup boiled water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk (whisked)
  • 1 ¼ cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ¼ teaspoon salt 

Directions: Preheat your oven to 350 and lightly spray cups of a nonstick mini-muffin pan with cooking spray. Start by combining cocoa and baking soda in a medium size bowl. Slowly blend in 1/3 cup of the bean puree (instructions for puree found below). Add hot water and stir until thickened. Mix in remaining bean puree, sugar, cinnamon and eggs until batter is smooth. Mix in flour, vanilla and salt blending until well combined. Using a tablespoon or cookie scoop, place batter in mini-muffin pan filling each no more than half full. Bake brownie bites for approximately 12 to 13 minutes until cooked thoroughly through. Allow brownie bites to cool for at least five to ten minutes.

**Black Bean Puree: To make black bean puree, use one 15 ounce can of black beans. Drain and rinse beans in a colander and add to food process or blender with ¼ cup hot water. Puree into smooth paste. Extra black bean paste can be stored in the refrigerator and added to soups, spread on crackers or rolled into a tortilla.

**Additional ingredients to consider: 1 cup ground nuts such as hazelnuts, walnuts or almonds.

Winter Smoothie Bowl

Winter Smoothie Bowl

This recipe provides a quick and easy dish filled with frozen berries and finished off with nutrient-rich toppings. Try to incorporate at least three to five servings of fruits and vegetables in your diet per day: fresh, canned, frozen or dried. 


  • 1 cup of frozen berries (raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries)
  • 1/3 cup unflavored soy milk (or any milk of your choice)
  • ½ banana, ripe


  • ¼ cup frozen berries
  • 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed

**Other topping options: unsweetened coconut, sunflower seeds, chopped almonds or pistachios.

Directions: Place smoothie ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour blended smoothie into a bowl and top with your choice of toppings. Enjoy right away!

Recipes inspired by's Healthy Recipes and prepared by Allie Farley, M.S., R.D., L.D., registered dietitian at VCU Health. Visit Allie's blog on Diet and Nutrition for more recipes and information about the connection between diet and cancer survivorship.

Written by: Massey Communications Office

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