School Lunches Monday: Gluten Free Chocolate Brownie

It’s been  a fairly busy weekend, with lots of late nights, and drop-ins for lunches and dinner. So tonight, when I asked my kids what they wanted in their lunch boxes tomorrow, and they replied with cheese sandwiches, who was I to complain? The only problem is that I couldn’t blog about a cheese sandwich now, could I? So, I started to think about what snacks were going into the lunch boxes this week, and decided I would make a gluten free brownie using tinned beans. This way they were filling and full of protein. Combined with a cheese sandwich and some fruit and vegetables, I think we have a pretty balanced lunch box.

lunch gf brownie

This is the lunchbox for Monday. Apple, orange segments, carrots and cucumber, a piece of brownie and a spelt bread cheese sandwich

Gluten Free Chocolate Brownie using Red Kidney Beans

serves 12 (I think – the kids dug into these so fast, I didn’t really have time to portion these up!)

I wanted to make a gluten free snack this week, so started thinking about what options I had instead of gf flours. Years ago, I had a recipe for a chocolate cake using chickpeas, but I couldn’t find it. My kids eat anything that is in brownie form, and when I pulled these out of the oven, they were very happy to polish off half the tray! The good thing about these also, is that I haven’t added any sugar.  I had some beautiful plump raisins, so I used these to sweeten this recipe 🙂

Useful Equipment: food processor


1 tin 400g red kidney beans (I used organic ones as they had no extra additives, and were cheaper than the conventional brands!)

80g butter (vegan option: 80g coconut oil)

2 eggs (vegan option: 1 tbs flaxseed meal mixed with 2 tbs water per egg. Let sit for a minute or two to thicken slightly before adding to the recipe)

1/2 cup raisins

1 cup cocoa/cacao (these were quite chocolatey, which my kids liked, but for younger children, perhaps try 3/4 cup )

optional extras: you could add chopped nuts, choc chips, cacao nibs, vanilla extract (I was running low, so decided against using it today), even a shot of coffee is always good in a brownie – but maybe keep it for the adults 😉


Melt butter/coconut oil and add raisins into butter and leave while assembling other ingredients,.

Drain and rinse beans.

Put all ingredients into a food processor. Blend until smooth.

Mixture will be quite thick. Pour into brownie tin and baked until firm to touch, around 30mins.

Once cooked, cool slightly before cutting. Enjoy!

NB: If you are having trouble finding red kidney beans, try black beans, butter beans or chickpeas

gf brownie

These brownies are almost fudgy in texture and I promise there isn’t a hint of bean flavor!


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