These secretly healthy protein brownies are rich, chewy, fudgy, and absolutely melt-in-your-mouth amazing, with up to fifteen grams of protein each!
The best protein brownies recipe
The most unbelievable thing about these dark chocolate protein brownies is that they do not taste healthy at all!
This recipe gives you the best of both worlds, which means there’s no need to sacrifice taste or enjoyment because you’re trying to be healthy. You can have your chocolate cake (or, in this case, brownies) and eat it too.
The high protein brownies can be vegan, gluten free, low calorie, low carb, paleo, sugar free, and flourless, with no banana and no avocado or other hidden ingredients.
Also be sure to try these Black Bean Brownies
Watch the protein brownie recipe video, above
Brownie frosting options
You have many options for these protein chocolate brownies!
The first option is to sprinkle them with mini chocolate chips right before baking. Once they come out of the oven, there’s no icing needed.
Or you can turn it into an even higher protein recipe by letting the brownies cool and then frosting them with the peanut butter filling from these Peanut Butter Brownies.
If using the easy peanut butter frosting, as shown in the video above, each frosted bodybuilding brownie will have an additional three grams protein, for a total of fifteen grams of protein per brownie. Talk about a healthy snack or dessert!
They are also great topped with my Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting, or spread with almond butter or Homemade Nutella, or eaten plain without any frosting at all.
Chocolate protein brownie ingredients
Gather the following ingredients: protein powder, cocoa powder, almond flour, sweetener, baking powder, salt, eggs or flax eggs, oil or butter, and pure vanilla extract.
For vegan protein brownies, use the flax eggs instead of chicken eggs.
The recipe calls for almond flour or almond meal. I have not tried substituting whole wheat flour, coconut flour, spelt flour, or white or gluten free all purpose flour so cannot recommend those. However, there is a nut free option listed in the recipe box.
These are a wonderful alternative to packaged protein brownies from brands like Fiber One, Kodiak, Muscle Gain, Quest, or MyProtein.
Leftover protein powder? Make these Protein Cookies
What kind of protein powder?
Grocery stores, health food stores, or even places like Target offer so many options these days. There’s hemp protein, whey protein, collagen, pea, casein, brown rice, or egg white protein, or pumpkin seed or soy protein.
For this simple recipe, I like to use either unsweetened or vanilla protein powder, but you can experiment with different flavors. Be sure to use a protein powder that you already know you like, because some brands can have a strong artificial aftertaste.
If you want to make the recipe exactly like I did, use Laird Superfood Protein Powder.
I have not yet tried the fudge brownies with chocolate protein powder instead of plain. If you go that route, be sure to report back with results.
How to make protein brownies
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease an eight inch pan or line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper, then set it aside.
In a large mixing bowl, stir all of the brownie ingredients well. Spread the chocolate brownie batter into the pan. I like to add a second sheet of parchment paper over the top because it helps with evenly smoothing the mix into the pan. Remove this second sheet of parchment before cooking.
Bake the brownies on the oven’s middle rack for twenty minutes, then remove from the oven. Let the brownie pan cool on the counter.
They will firm up as they cool and continue to firm up if you loosely cover the pan with a towel and refrigerate overnight.
It is fine to leave the brownies out for a few hours on the counter if serving at a party or transporting to an event. For freshness, I recommend refrigerating leftovers in a covered container for up to five days.
The chocolate protein brownies can also be slices and frozen in an airtight container for about two to three months. Thaw before eating.
Readers also love this Healthy Banana Bread
Different flavor protein brownies
Mocha fudge – Stir half a teaspoon of instant coffee granules or espresso powder in with the dry ingredients while making the brownies.
Mint chocolate – Add one fourth teaspoon of pure peppermint extract. Taste the unbaked brownie batter, and add more extract if a stronger mint flavor is desired.
Chocolate orange – Add the zest of one orange to the protein brownie batter before transferring it to the pan and baking.
You can also stir in a handful of chopped walnuts or pecans, shredded coconut, chia seeds, flax seeds, raisins, dates, other dried fruit, diced almonds, or chocolate chips.
- 1 cup almond flour (for nut free, try these Healthy Brownies)
- 1/3 cup protein powder
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder (I like Dutch)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil or butter
- 2 eggs, or 2 flax eggs
- 2/3 cup sugar or granulated erythritol
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, optional
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease an 8-inch pan, or line it with parchment. Stir all ingredients well. Spread into the pan, using a second sheet of parchment if needed to press down evenly. Bake 20 minutes, then let cool. They continue to firm up as they cool and also firm up even more if you very loosely cover and refrigerate overnight. Frosting ideas are listed above.View Nutrition Facts
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what could you sub the almond flour with? Could you use ground almonds or coconut flour instead? Would love to make the protein brownies, but don’t have almond flour.
You don’t specify a flavor for the protein powder, so I don’t know if you mean chocolate powder, unflavored powder, or maybe even vanilla powder. It’s very hard to find unflavored protein powder in my area, so I’m hoping you can elaborate. Thanks!
Unflavored protein powder can be found online. TGS is a brand I personally prefer, as they tend to have the fewest “fillers” in their ingredients and not to mention soy free. A cheaper brand would be Now, which can be found probably cheapest on DPS Nutrition (use a search engine to find it). Otherwise, I’m assuming because she’s vegan, it would be a vegan type protein powder?? I know unflavored pea protein exists (again, Now has one), which is likely fine using in this recipe. Personally, having read through the recipe, I would use any you asked about. I’m certain it would be fine with either of those. I hope I was able to help a little.
She specifies the kind of protein powder she used in her post above the recipe in the section called “What kind of protein powder?”
I’m not Katie but I used whey protein powder and it worked great in these protein brownies!
I’m confused where the 12 g of protein per serving is coming from. The powder you used is only 19g total and when I put these ingredients into a calculator it came back with 3.3g per serving for 9 servings. Any idea?
The almond flour adds protein too. I plugged the numbers into an online calculator and got 10 grams per brownie. I didn’t add the frosting because I didn’t use it when I made them.
These were delish btw!
There are other ingredients other than the protein powder…. Almond flour, flax, etc also have protein which would contribute to the amount of protein in each brownie.
I actually got more protein per brownie in my calculations than Katie lists in her nutrition facts. But I used whey protein when I made these so that might be why.
If you are not vegan, try whey protein because it worked really well in this recipe.
Betty Godfrey says
This looks so good, I will make these protein brownies for my family. Thanks for sharing.
Hi Katie, could I use almond butter in place of the coconut oil? And still add in a tbsp or so of coconut oil?
I loved these. I eat low carb, so I used sugar substitute and lily’s chocolate chips. I also did the melted butter option and used unflavored Isopure for the protein powder. I recommend waiting until the next day to eat them-they really are much more chocolatey and fudgy that way.
These protein brownies were so filling and rich!
Made these today. Absolutely gorgeous.
I had to leave a big ol’ thank you on this recipe. I am gluten-free and REALLY trying to watch my weight, as I am getting married in May, but had INSANE chocolate cravings that I just could not ignore last night. I found this recipe and gave it a shot. My GOODNESS these brownies are DELICIOUS. Chocolate craving defeated with little damage done. THANK YOU!!!!! And these were incredibly easy to make. Definitely saving this recipe to use again (and again and again).
And if anyone is curious, I used 310 unflavored meal replacement shake as my protein shake and coconut sugar.
These are in the oven now and look amazing! I do believe the protein is closer to 4.4g per serving and not 12g, as stated in the nutrition facts.
I’m currently making these right now— I went with the coconut oil option and I feel like my batter is thick. Is this normal? Or should I add a little bit of butter to loosen the batter?
I thought these were great (!), but I don’t understand the nutrition facts. I used butter and real sugar and came up with: 227 cals, 12.5 fat 25.4 carbs and 5.5 protein. Are your nutrition facts based on using coconut oil and erythritol?