A rich and creamy healthy chocolate smoothie loaded with protein thanks to a secret ingredient that you totally can't taste - beans! It's like a chocolate protein shake but made without any weird ingredients. Naturally sweetened with just banana and dates, this bean smoothie is totally vegan and dairy-free, and I promise it's delicious!
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Whether you've been here for a while or you're brand new, I want you to do something for me.
Close your eyes.
Cross your arms across your chest.
Let your body fall backwards.
I promise I'll catch you.
That's right my friends, we're doing trust falls today. Trust falls right into putting beans in your smoothies, and I promise that I'll catch you.
I'm sorry, did you say bean smoothie?
Yes, friends, I did. Bean smoothie! Black bean smoothie! Chocolate black bean smoothie! It's like a chocolate protein shake, but without any weird stuff in it.
Unless of course you consider putting beans in your smoothies weird, and then I guess it has weird stuff in it. I'm ok with it!
If you've ever had some hippy dip friend who tried to pass off a tray of bean brownies as a dessert, that friend will love this smoothie. (Ps - I am totally that friend. Check out my Fudgy Adzuki Bean Brownies.)
What goes into this healthy chocolate smoothie?
I like to call this my Chocolate Black Bean Brownie Smoothie. It tastes like you're drinking a brownie, but is so hella delicious you won't even believe it. You're gonna need the following:
- Beans --> Yes my friends, this is a bean smoothie going down.
- Banana --> Preferably frozen.
- Cauliflower --> Preferably frozen.
- Dates --> Medjool is where it's at.
- Hemp seeds --> For extra protein.
- Cocoa powder --> Helllloooo chocolate!
- Cinnamon --> Just a pinch
- Plant-based milk --> Oat milk is my jam, but you do you.
Can you taste the beans?
This is a bean smoothie, but cross my heart and hope to die, you can not taste the beans. They just blend up creamy and delicious and are totally disguised by the other delicious flavours.
You can't taste the frozen cauliflower either, if you're worried about that. It adds bulk, dietary fiber, and makes this chocolate smoothie icy cold and refreshing.
Hemp seeds add another boost of protein, and sweetened with just a frozen banana and a couple of medjool dates (one is perfect for me, but you can add two if you prefer things to be on the sweeter side), this healthy chocolate smoothie is vegan, naturally sweetened, and naturally protein-rich. It's great for practically everyone!
Can I make this smoothie in advance?
You bet you can! This Chocolate Black Bean Smoothie recipe is a great option for Frozen Smoothie Packs.
You can also blend it up and keep your smoothie in the fridge for a few hours. It might separate a bit so you'll want to shake or stir before you drink it.
What kind of milk should I use?
I used almond milk when I first started making this smoothie, but these days my plant-based milk of choice is oat milk, so that's what I use more often than not. Any plant-based milk that you're into will do just fine.
Do I need a fancy blender?
The best blender is the blender you have... that's how the saying goes, right?
To be honest, I've made this smoothie in a variety of blenders ranging from not that fancy to fancy AF, and the main difference is the smoothness of the drink. If you have a less powerful bender you may find a few chunks of cauliflower or dates left behind, but that's not a big deal.
Hey Nutrition Lady, are black beans healthy?
Black beans are a good source of folate, dietary fiber, protein, phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium and vitamin K. So yeah, they're pretty dang healthy.
The protein-plus-fiber combination in black beans is one of the things that makes black beans so special. A one cup serving contains 15g of fiber (over half of the daily recommended intake), and 15g of protein.
Much of the fiber is indigestible, which supports digestive health, particularly in the lower part of our digestive tract. The protein-fiber combination is also key in stabilizing blood sugar levels, as both protein and fiber move through our digestive systems at a moderate pace. This is especially important in a drink like this healthy chocolate smoothie.
Black beans are also rich in soluble fiber, which is helpful for lowering blood cholesterol levels and supporting cardiovascular health.
Other tasty smoothies you might enjoy:
Chocolate Black Bean Smoothie
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 cup frozen cauliflower
- ½ cup black beans
- 1-2 medjool dates pitted
- 1 cup almond milk or milk of choice
- 1 tablespoon hemp seeds
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Place all ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth.
- Pour into a glass and sprinkle cocoa nibs over the top if desired. Serve immediately.
- Using 2 dates makes this smoothie very sweet. I prefer just one, but if you're accustomed to a sweeter drink or your banana isn't very sweet, you can go for two.
- You can't taste the frozen cauliflower at all! It adds thickness and a good amount of dietary fiber to the smoothie.
- You can't taste the black beans, I promise!
- This makes one LARGE smoothie for a hungry person, or two smaller snack-sized smoothies.
- Nutrition values are an estimate only!
This recipe was originally published July 27, 2014. It was retested, rephotographed, and updated March 28, 2019.