No Flour Black Bean Brownies

These are healthy brownies that DO NOT taste healthy, and I can say that with assurance, as they’ve been tested on three different groups of people used to “normal” desserts.

No-Flour Black Bean Brownies (gluten-free)

  • 1 1/2 cups black beans (1 15-oz can, drained and rinsed very well) (250g after draining) 
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder- dutch or regular (10g) (add a little extra if desired) 
  • 1/2 cup quick oats (40g) (See nutrition facts link below for all substitution notes.) 
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup or agave (Honey will work, but not for strict vegans.) (75g) 
  • 2 stevia packs or 2 tbsp sugar (or omit and increase maple syrup to 1/2 cup) 
  • 1/4 cup coconut or vegetable oil (40g) (See “nutrition facts” link for all substitution notes.) 
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup chocolate chips (115-140g) (Not optional. Omit at your own risk.) 
  • optional: more chips, for presentation
Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine all ingredients except chips in a good food processor, and blend until completely smooth. Really blend well. (A blender can work if you absolutely must, but the texture—and even the taste—will be much better in a food processor.) Stir in the chips, then pour into a greased 8×8 pan. Optional: sprinkle extra chocolate chips over the top. Cook 15-18 minutes, then let cool at least 10 minutes before trying to cut. Makes 9-12 brownies.

Nutrition Facts Per Brownie: Calories: 115, Fat: 5.5g, Carbs: 15g, Fiber: 3g, Protein: 2.5g, WW Points (new system): 3 points

Feta-Cranberry Lentil Salad Recipe

An unusual combination of ingredients gives this salad its flavor. Sweet-tart cranberries are mixed with a tang of feta cheese to make it surprisingly tasty.

1 cup dried lentils, rinsed
2 cups water
2 Spice Islands® Bay Leaves
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon honey
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

- In a small saucepan, combine the lentils, water and bay leaves; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until lentils are tender.
- Drain and discard bay leaves. Rinse lentils in cold water.
- In a large bowl, combine the lentils, cranberries, walnuts, feta cheese and parsley.
- In a small bowl, whisk the oil, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper.
- Pour over lentil mixture; toss to coat. Refrigerate until serving.

Yield: 4 servings. Nutritional Facts 1 serving (3/4 cup) equals 435 calories, 22 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 8 mg cholesterol, 1,026 mg sodium, 44 g carbohydrate, 17 g fiber, 20 g protein.

Green Lentil & Cucumber Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

I've just discovered lentils as a fat loss food and in my search for ways to prepare them, I found this interesting cold lentil salad with cucumbers and a lemon vinaigrette.

Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 shallot, finely diced
1 clove garlic, chopped fine
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cooked green lentils, chilled
1/2 English cucumber, peeled, seeded, finely diced
1/4 cup piquillo peppers, cut into thin strips
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons coarsely crumbled feta cheese


  • Whisk the lemon zest and juice, shallot, garlic, cumin, and paprika in a medium bowl to blend well. 
  • While whisking, drizzle in the olive oil until fully mixed, season to taste with salt and pepper and reserve. 
  • Place the lentils, cucumber, peppers, cilantro, and parsley in a separate medium bowl. Toss with enough of the vinaigrette to coat and season to taste with salt and pepper. 
  • Spoon the salad into serving bowls, top with the feta cheese and serve.

Lentil Chili with Green Onions

I can honestly say I've never had lentils before but when I starting a new healthy eating plan, beans were a big part of the fat loss program. I love chili, so making chili with lentils instead of my usual beans and ground beef seemed like the easiest way to try lentils. I was right...this chili is delicious!


2 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano leaves
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (add more to make it hotter)
4 cups (or more) water
1 cup dried brown lentils, rinsed
1/2 cup tomato puree
1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp chopped green onions


  • Heat oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion and saute for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for another 30 seconds. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano leaves, and cayenne pepper; stir for 30 seconds. 
  • Add the 4 cups of water, lentils, and tomato puree. Increase the heat and bring to a boil, skimming off any foam from the surface. 
  • Reduce heat to medium and simmer until lentils are tender, adding more water by 1/4 cupfulls as needed if dry, about 30 minutes. 
  • Stir in 1/3 cup green onions. Season chili to taste with salt and pepper. 
  • Divide the chili among 4 bowls. 
  • Sprinkle with remaining green onions and serve.
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