Chocolate, Red Bean, and Rose Brownies from Joe Yonan’s Cool Beans

This Chocolate, Red Bean, and Rose Brownies recipe is an exclusive from Joe Yonan’s cookbook Cool Beans: The Ultimate Guide to Cooking with the World’s Most Versatile Plant-Based Protein, with 125 Recipes. Click here to find out where you can purchase a copy of the book.

Disclaimer: the cookbooks we feature are independently selected by our Best of Vegan editors and are in no way sponsored by the author and/or the publisher. All content is used with permission.

Joe Yonan is the Food and Dining editor of The Washington Post, where he writes the Weeknight Vegetarian column. He is the author of “Cool Beans” (Ten Speed Press, 2020), the editor of “America The Great Cookbook” (Weldon Owen, 2017) and has written two other cookbooks for Ten Speed: “Eat Your Vegetables” (2013) and “Serve Yourself” (2011). The proud queer grandson of Assyrian refugees, he is a member of the Arab and Middle Eastern Journalists Association.


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Chocolate, Red Bean, and Rose Brownies from Joe Yonan's Cool Beans

Chocolate, Red Bean, and Rose Brownies


If black bean brownies could be a thing—and believe me, they are a thing—then why not red bean brownies, based on the little adzuki (aka azuki) beans that are so beloved across Asia for their versatility in sweets? I started with a pretty killer gluten-free recipe from Dana Shultz’s Minimalist Baker site and set to tinkering. In went the adzuki beans, out went the black. In went aquafaba—the liquid from a can of chickpeas, not the adzukis, because the flavor is milder—and out went a flax egg. In went a little chickpea flour for extra structure. The master stroke, based on a suggestion from my friend and cookbook author Tess “The Blender Girl” Masters: rose water, which takes these from everyday-American-take-to-work good to special-occasion-Middle-Eastern great. They’re very fudgy and dense on the inside, a little chewy on the outside—and easy enough to make whenever you want.


  • 3 tablespoons vegan or dairy butter or coconut oil, melted, plus more for greasing the muffin tin
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon chickpea flour, plus more for dusting (may substitute all-purpose flour)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added adzuki beans, drained and rinsed
  • ⅔ cup aquafaba (the liquid from a shaken can of no-salt-added chickpeas)
  • ¾ cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon rose water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons dairy-free or traditional semisweet chocolate chips (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts or pistachios (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons crushed dried organic rose petals (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease one 6-muffin (jumbo) tin. Dust with flour and tap out the excess.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the butter, flour, adzuki beans, aquafaba, cocoa, salt, rose water, vanilla, sugar, and baking powder and process until very smooth, 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  3. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups and smooth the tops with a spoon. If using, sprinkle on the chocolate chips, nuts, and/or rose petals.
  4. Bake until the tops are dry and the edges start to pull away from the sides, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 30 minutes before using a fork to remove them from the pan. They are meant to be very fudgy inside, so don’t worry if they seem too moist.
  5. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.


Chocolate, Red Bean, and Rose Brownies from Joe Yonan's Cool Beans

Reprinted with permission from Cool Beans: The Ultimate Guide to Cooking with the World’s Most Versatile Plant-Based Protein, with 125 Recipes by Joe Yonan, copyright © 2020. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

Photography credit: Aubrie Pick © 2020

Cool Beans Cookbook Cover

(Click on the image above to order your copy)

If you loved these Chocolate, Red Bean, And Rose Brownies, you might also like…

Nigerian Stewed Black-eyed Peas and Plantains (Ewa Riro And Dodo) from Joe Yonan’s Cool Beans

Or click here to see all exclusive recipes from Joe Yonan!



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