These protein brownies are super fudgy, gooey, and need just four ingredients to make! No flour, no eggs, and no butter needed, they make a guilt free dessert fix.
As someone with a raging sweet tooth, getting my chocolate fix in healthier ways are always a plus.
This is why we regularly make healthy chocolate cake or brownie bites. They are rich and chocolatey but made with wholesome ingredients. When we are in the baking mood and want brownies, nothing beats these fudgy high protein brownies!
Table of Contents
Why you’ll love this protein brownies recipe
My protein mug cake recipe inspired these brownies. It’s essentially a single serving version but as someone who enjoys this so often, I need a big batch! These are a staple in our kitchen and I have no doubt they will be in yours, too!
- They need just four ingredients. Bananas, cocoa powder, almond butter, and protein powder.
- Each brownie has 12 grams of protein. Not only do these brownies satisfy the sweet tooth but they also keep you fuller for longer.
- You can add even more protein! If 12 grams isn’t enough, you can double that by spreading a protein frosting over the top (check the recipe card for the details!).
- Naturally vegan and gluten free. These are great if you can’t eat eggs or flour.
How to make protein brownies
The beauty of making these high protein brownies is that everything is thrown in a blender, bowl, or mixer to create a batter. All you do then is bake it up and you are done!
- Almond butter. Smooth and creamy with no added sugar. I either make my own or opt for a no-stir kind.
- Banana. The riper the bananas are, the sweeter the brownies will be.
Not a fan of banana or allergic? Swap it out for equal parts pumpkin puree or unsweetened applesauce. However, you will need to add some sweetener or syrup to compensate for the lack of sweetness.
- Cocoa powder. I like using dark cocoa powder for an extra rich flavor, but any cocoa powder works.
- Protein powder. Using a chocolate protein powder will yield the best flavor but vanilla will also work.
- Mix-ins. Optional, but I love to add some chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate.
Start by adding all your ingredients into a high-speed blender or food processor. Blend the ingredients together until fully combined. If desired, add some chocolate chips.
Then, transfer the batter into a lined pan and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a skewer comes out ‘just’ clean. While the brownies are hot in the pan, lightly press your hand over the top to form unnatural cracky tops.
Allow the brownies to cool in the pan completely before drizzling with chocolate and slicing them up.
Tips and tricks
- Use the right protein powder. Not all protein powders are equal. Casein, brown rice, and pea protein powders are far superior to whey or whey protein blends. Whey based powders tend to dry out baked goods.
- Make the brownies sweeter. These brownies rely on the banana and the sweetened protein powder for sweetness. Add a few tablespoons of sugar or maple syrup if you prefer sweeter brownies.
- Do not overbake them. Once the brownies are firm on top and a skewer comes out mostly clean, they are ready to be removed from the oven.
- Add mix-ins. Like any good brownie, these are a blank canvas, so fold through some chocolate chips, walnuts, or even candy!
- Frost them. To take these brownies to another level, add a layer of sugar free or healthy frosting to them.
- Make protein brownie bites. Instead of baking them in the square pan, bake them in a muffin tin for a protein-packed version of brownie bites.
To store: Leftovers should be stored in the refrigerator, covered, as they will spoil at room temperature. They will keep well for up to five days.
To freeze: Place the brownies in an airtight container and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Square pan. The perfect size to bake thick and delicious brownies.
- High speed blender. I love using a blender over a mixing bowl because there are no traces of bananas whatsoever.
- Food processor. Use the handy dandy food processor if you don’t have a blender.
Frequently asked questions
Compared to traditional brownies, high protein brownies are healthier, as they contain less sugar, less carbs, and added protein.
Adding some almond or oat flour will give these brownies stability and structure but aren’t necessary.
To get the crackly tops, you need to press down on them once removed from the oven. They do not occur naturally.
More high protein desserts to try
Protein Brownies (4 Ingredients)
- 1 cup banana measured as mashed
- 1/2 cup almond butter can sub for peanut butter, cashew butter or a nut butter alternative
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup protein powder
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a high speed blender or mixing bowl, combine all your ingredients and blend or mix until smooth.
- Transfer the brownie batter to the lined pan and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops are firm.
- Remove the brownies from the oven and gently press down on the tops to form a crackly top. Let them cool completely before slicing and serving.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.
How about I take a brownie tin and scoop everything out with a spoon or my bare hands? Does that work? XD ANYWAYS, your brownie creations never fail to strike me fancy! LOVE LOVE this!
Perhaps I missed it, but are you able to tell us how many carbs, etc., there are in these? My dil is diabetic and I’m always looking for low-carb treats. I’m going to try these simply because they sound so yummy! Thanks much.
Hi Jean! For sure- If you go on to myfitnesspal or another calorie calculating website, if you plug in the ingredients, it will provide it for you! Hope you enjoy them 🙂
Does this work well with paper muffin liners? Or do you suggest greasing the tin and pouring directly in the tin?
Hi Kelly- As long as it’s greased, that would be fine 🙂
Is there a substitute for the nut butters? My son is allergic to nuts. Can sunflower seed butter be used instead?
Hi Sujata- Absolutely! I would recommend a sweetened sunflower seed or soy nut butter 🙂
How long would these stay fresh in the refrigerator?
Hi Nadine, they will las 4-5 days 🙂
Did you use normal bananas that are appropriate for eating plain (as in, still yellow) or were they really ripe and smushy like you would use for banana bread?
Hi Victoria! I prefer using the overly ripe ones for my recipes, as they lend a better texture and sweetness 🙂
How big would you say a scoop of protein powder is? Do you mean flush scoop or heaping?
Hi Mandy! The scoop is usually 32-34 grams, with 25 grams or so of protein per serving 🙂
Can I just use this recipe without the protein powder?
I just made these !!
I had a little trouble mixing my ingredients , but I think I need new appliances ! ((Mixer))
They are in the oven & I cannot wait to try!! ❤️
😀 Love!! Hope they came out delicious, Kristen!
Tried these this afternoon. Used 1/2 cup banana and 1/2 cup puréed pumpkin. Used UMP chocolate protein powder (the BEST tasting protein powder, imho). Used chunky almond butter, and did not add any sweetener. They are Devine… yummy. Calculated per mini (based on 18 count mini muffin pan) : 61 calories, 4.5 carbs and 3.6g protein each. Thank you!!
That sounds so good- Thanks for the feedback, Kristina!
How many calories per mini muffin pls? Sounds a bit tempting to eat lots!
Hi Tara! If you go to myfitnesspal and add your specific brand ingredients, it will provide it for you! Enjoy! 🙂
Roughly how many bananas do you use to get one cup of mashed for this recipe? Thanks!
Hi Stephanie! I usually need 2-3 medium ones 🙂