Sunday, May 24, 2015

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Unite! chocolate and peanut butter. Who else thinks that this is THE best combo ever?

Currently, I'm 35 weeks pregnant and have to admit, my eating isn't as clean as it was prior to pregnancy, and sadly, my workouts have had to take a back seat due to inflammation in my hips and ribs and barely being able to walk across the room, let alone complete an intense workout.

I find that I'm continuously looking for something sweet in my kitchen cupboards, and I have even reduced myself to sneaking some of my 3 year old's Easter chocolates from time to time.

In hindsight, my eating and workout habits were more regimented than anyone I know. I had taken great pride in what I was accomplishing, for myself, for my family.

All of a sudden, that's seemed to have slipped. I still prep some meals, but not like I used to, and snacks have turned from homemade protein snacks and complex carbs into an oat fudge bar and coffee from a delicious coffee house. Those oat fudge bars by the way, I've discovered are over 400 cal each!

Which brings me to the current week. Vowing to get back to the lifestyle that led before, I thought about high protein, healthy snacks that I want to feed my family as well as myself. But also ones that would feel like I didn't need to search through the cupboards for leftover Easter treats.

Enter, black bean brownies. I've made them before and really enjoyed them. But it was never a staple in my house. Quick, healthy, and made with natural, clean ingredients, but still fudgy, indulgent and delicious! And what better than brownies? Adding peanut butter to the mix! Check these out, you won't be sorry!

  • 14 oz can black beans, drained & rinsed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup applesauce, unsweetened
  • 10 - 12 Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter, unsalted
  • 2 tbsp chocolate chips (I use Enjoy Life)
  • Cooking spray (I use Coconut oil)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 8 x 8 square baking dish with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Add all ingredients, except chocolate chips and peanut butter, to a powerful blender or food processor and process until smooth. Pour batter into prepared baking dish and level with spatula.
  3. In a bowl, microwave peanut butter until melted and smooth. Drop spoonfuls on top of batter and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Using butter knife make deep swirls, "sinking" some peanut butter into the batter. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let brownies cool for 5 minutes in the baking dish. Holding onto the parchment paper flaps carefully transfer brownies to a cooling rack and let cool for 30 minutes before slicing. Cut into 16 squares and enjoy warm or cold
  4. Storage Instructions: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 7 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

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