When Jen M., a mom of two, asked us to try her flourless chocolate cake made with garbanzo beans (yup, you heard that right), I cruised right over to her blog, Cage Free Monkeys, to check it out. I have never used beans in a cake before and was excited to give it a try (yup, I have no life). According to Jen’s blog post, she added the beans for extra nutrition … and she also omitted the flour, thus creating a cake ideal for people on gluten-free diets.
Before I tell you about Jen’s recipe, let me digress for a moment to tell you a little bit about celiac disease – a condition that afflicts almost 1 in 100 people. The only treatment for celiac disease (also known as celiac sprue) is a gluten-free diet. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, and individuals with celiac can’t tolerate it. Though it’s not an easy diet to follow, supermarkets are now brimming with gluten-free food products, and there are lots of helpful resources out there including cookbooks and websites (one of our favorites is Gluten-Free Diet hosted by dietitian, Shelley Case).
Anyway, back to Jen’s Flourless Chocolate Cake. A few weeks back, I made it for a family cookout and topped it with fresh berries and whipped cream. The cake/torte was a huge hit. Carolyn, Leah, and my husband Don gobbled it up. My mom and dad even loved it. Nobody knew there was a vegetable in every decadent bite (yup, garbanzo beans are technically a vegetable) and I have no intention of ever telling them!
This delicious cake was easy to make, kid friendly, and nutritious thanks to the beans. Therefore, we are pleased to announce that Cage Free Monkeys is the recipient of this month’s Healthy Meal with Kid Appeal Award. Read on for the recipe as well as some cooking notes from my kitchen.
Flourless Chocolate Cake (from Cage Free Monkeys)
Makes 12 Servings
- One 19-ounce can garbanzo beans (AKA chickpeas), drained and rinsed
- 1 ½ cups chocolate chips, melted
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
2. Place the beans, melted chips, sugar, eggs and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor and process until super smooth.
3. Pour the batter into a 9-inch springform pan and bake 40 minutes, or until the cake is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan on a rack. Remove from the pan, slice and serve.
Here are a few additional cooking notes from my kitchen:
> If you’re following a gluten-free diet, make sure the chips you use in this recipe are “gluten free.”
> Instead of whipped cream, you could also use frozen yogurt or vanilla lowfat ice cream.
> Jen called for a 19-ounce can of garbanzo beans, but I used a 15-ounce can because that’s what I had in my pantry. It worked just fine.
> If you don’t have a food processor, Jen suggests you use a blender.
> To melt the chocolate chips, place them in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir until melted, 1 to 2 minutes.
Jen’s recipe has inspired Liz and me to create a brownie recipe using black beans. We’ll post it to the blog once it’s done. Shhhhhhhh…..