Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies (dairy-free, nut-free, blender batter!)
These decadent, almost sinful Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies are like the love child of a salted caramel mocha and a fudgy brownie. They’re dairy-free and nut-free and made quickly and easily in your blender for easy clean-up! Nourishing, too!
Just. make. the. brownies.
I refuse to write 1,395 words on why these Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies deserve to be made.
Like, I’m pretty sure the name alone is enough. Right? 🙂 Tell me it’s enough.
I am, however, going to fill this post with drool-worthy photos for your viewing pleasure.
They’re decadent, rich, fudgy, not too sweet. In fact, I’ll just warn you now: if it’s a super sweet, fudgy brownie you’re after, click away. Because this is not that brownie.
I used to love super sweet chocolate desserts, but no more. I will happily snack on the darkest, salted chocolate out there without a complaint in the world because I genuinely enjoy that dark chocolate flavor.
Combine that dark chocolate with a caramel-y sweetener (coconut syrup — more below) and ground, fair trade breakfast blend coffee…
And it’s like your salted caramel mocha had a baby with a friggin’ brownie.
So, let’s get some particulars about these grain-free brownies out of the way, because I know y’all have ingredient questions and such.
If they’re grain-free, what are they made of?
I know. Cliche, right?
Aren’t black bean brownies, like, so 2011?
I remember the first time I made a dessert from black beans. It was my son’s birthday — I think his 7th (he’s 15 now). And everyone LOVED the black bean cupcakes I made.
Until I told them they were made out of beans. And you’d’ve thought the goll-dang brownies had cat hair in them. “Ewwwwww!” and “Gross!” filled my living room and people actually put their cupcakes in the trash!
Whatever. Mind over matter, people.
Anyway, these rich, Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies are made of black beans.
No, I don’t have any substitutions for you.
It’s how I wanted the recipe to be. I know I do lots of keto desserts, but this just ain’t one of ’em.
How I prep black beans for grain-free baking (ie: make them “nourishing”):
So, the black beans that make up these brownies were prepared the nourishing way — a la soaking for a good 24-48 hours to reduce the stuff that makes you have gas (aka phytates).
Once soaked, they’re cooked in the Instant Pot. Then, I drain them and rinse them really well. Now, they’re ready for brownies.
Also, I don’t just make enough beans to make brownies. This recipe calls for 1-3/4 cups of beans. I don’t know how to cook that small of an amount of beans.
So, make a big batch of beans — leave them unseasoned when cooking — and then use your leftovers for burritos or black bean salsa or however you like eating black beans.
Just reserve 1-3/4 cup for these Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies, mmmmmkay?
Here’s my tutorial for soaking and cooking beans in the Instant Pot. It’s for pinto beans, but the basic recipe is the same.
Do I have to soak the beans? Can’t I just used canned?
If you’re going to use canned black beans, you’ll need to drain them and rinse them first.
BUT, if these brownies give you the toots, don’t say I didn’t warn ya. 😉
Grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, and beans all contain a compound (aka “anti-nutrient”) called phytic acid. This compound is not easy for our bodies to digest — hence, why many folks get bloated or gassy after eating these foods.
Maybe you do get gas after eating these foods, but you never knew why. Well, now ya do!
Dried beans are cheaper anyway. And, they’re not difficult to cook.
You (and probably your partner/spouse/significant other) will probably thank you for trying a new method of cooking beans that makes your belly and the air in your home a much nicer place.
How are these brownies dairy-free and nut-free?
Well, “normal” brownies usually contain butter — so instead, I’ve swapped coconut oil. You could also use avocado oil.
If you can have dairy, melted butter or ghee would be fine.
Most grain-free brownies are usually made with almond flour. I have plenty of almond flour desserts here at All The Nourishing Things — like this Grain-Free Maple Carrot Cake and these Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Chocolate-Vanilla Swirl Frosting.
I’m sort of moving away from almond flour since 1.) it’s expensive and 2.) most almonds are grown in California which has been in a severe drought for years, making almond farming unsustainable.
Sweetener Options — Coconut Syrup = Caramel Flavor Without Making Caramel
I chose rich and caramel-y coconut syrup for these Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies. Coconut syrup is my cheat for getting a caramel-y flavor into stuff without making actual caramel.
Ain’t nobody got time for that.
I did it in my Paleo Salted Caramel & Toasted Coconut Marshmallows and in my Dairy-Free Salted Caramel Ice Cream.
It doesn’t taste exactly like caramel, but it’s darn near close. And it’s good enough for me.
Notice the words “salted caramel” in there?
Yes, you can substitute another liquid sweetener, like honey or maple syrup, but you won’t end up with “salted caramel” brownies.
And, they’ll probably be too sweet if you sub honey or maple syrup. So, if that’s the route you choose, you might experiment with reducing the sweetener a bit. Coconut syrup is not as sweet as maple syrup or honey.
Furthermore, coconut syrup is not as “special” of an ingredient as one might think.
You can easily find it on Amazon, at Wildly Organic, and at many health food stores. I know Sprouts carries it if you have one near you. It also goes by the name “Coconut Nectar”, so if you find that, know that you’ve found the right thing.
I get my coconut syrup from Wildly Organic. I buy it by the gallon, y’all. It’s damn good.
In my opinion, it has the best flavor and it’s organic and comes from sustainably farmed coconut palm trees.
Now, about that mocha part…
I’m not a coffee drinker. I gave the stuff up years ago.
But, every once in a while, I get a whiff of the beans when my husband opens the bag of beans and it makes me wish for things.
A finely ground, fairly traded breakfast blend — just 3 tablespoons — gives these grain-free brownies just enough of a coffee flavor without being over-the-top.
You’re definitely not going to get the caffeine jitters from these brownies.
Once you divide 3 tablespoons of coffee into 9 or 16 servings of brownies — hey, I’m not judging how big or small you slice — you’re looking at a pretty minuscule amount of actual coffee.
If you just can’t do coffee or any caffeine at all, feel free to skip it — and add an additional 3 extra tablespoons of raw cacao powder instead!
P.S. If you can’t tell, fairly traded ingredients are a big deal to our family. We are more than willing to pay a bit extra for ingredients that are sourced from farms and companies that practice fair practices, like paying their employees a living wage, not trafficking/employing minor children, and providing safe working environments.
Alrighty, are you ready for some grown-up, deep-flavored Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies?
How To Make Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies (dairy-free, nut-free, blender batter!)
That’s right, folks. All the ingredients are going in the blender. A high-speed blender yields the best results, but hey, use what you’ve got.
More and more, I find myself shying away from my stand mixer. In fact, I don’t even keep it out on the counter anymore. It’s just bulky.
So, the “wet” ingredients go in the blender first: the black beans (rinsed and drained), eggs, coconut syrup, and melted coconut oil. Blend that up until it’s super smooth.
Then, add the remaining ingredients: raw cacao powder, finely ground coffee, vanilla, salt, and baking powder.
Blend again until totally smooth. On my Blendtec, I use the Batter button twice.
Line an 8″ x 8″ glass pan with parchment paper. Pour the brownie batter into the pan and bake for 20 to 23-ish minutes. When the edges start to crack a bit and a toothpick inserted comes out *almost* clean, they’re ready.
If you like a really fudgy grain-free brownie, bake for less time. If you prefer a cake-y brownie, bake longer. You get the gist of what I’m saying here.
Here’s the full recipe!
Grain-Free Salted Caramel Mocha Brownies (dairy-free, nut-free, blender batter!)
- 1-3/4cupsoaked and cooked black beans, drained and rinsed(or 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed)
- 2/3cupcoconut syrup
- 3tablespoonscoconut oil, meltedor avocado oil
- 1/2cupraw cacao powder
- 3tablespoonsfinely ground breakfast blend coffee
- 1teaspoonvanilla extract
- 1/2teaspoonbaking powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line an 8"x8" baking dish with parchment paper.
To a high-speed blender, add the drained and rinsed beans, eggs, melted oil, and coconut syrup.
Blend until smooth.
Then add the remaining ingredients. Blend again until smooth.
Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish.
Bake for 25-28 minutes, or until the sides begin to crack. Bake longer for cake-y brownies and shorter if you like them fudgy.
Remove from the oven. You can cut into them and eat them hot or cool.
Store in an airtight container on the counter for a couple of days. If they're not all gone by then, transfer to the fridge for storage to prevent mold.
More Nourishing Chocolate Desserts You’ll Love…
- 6-Ingredient Paleo & Keto Chocolate Torte
- Paleo Cauliflower Chocolate Pudding
- Keto Chocolate Coconut Donuts (nut-free, dairy-free)
- Keto Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Chocolate-Vanilla Swirl Frosting
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake Bars
- Nourishing White Hot Chocolate