This past Saturday, SFG ran the PHUNT 25k trail race. I went to cheer him on and read a good chunk of “Armada,” by Ernest Cline while waiting for him to finish – so happy to read something that isn’t a text book! If you liked “Ready Player One” by the same author or have any interest in gaming culture, you’d love this one. I heard RPO will be out in late 2016 in movie format too, I can’t wait to see it.

I made a big batch of these chocolate bean cupcakes to take along to the race, as they’re a favorite in our house that I haven’t made in a long time! The original recipe is from an issue of Vegetarian Times magazine from at least 10 years ago. The orange zest and juice works really well in these! This recipe makes a dozen very high carb cupcakes – perfect for after a long, tough run! Sometimes I substitute coconut oil in the icing, but since I didn’t have any storage options while we were at the race, I stuck with butter since coconut oil has such a low melting point.

Cupcake batter

  • ⅓ cup soy margarine, melted
  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs or ½ cup egg substitute
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbs. grated orange zest, optional (I added at least twice the amount of zest!)
  • 1 15.5-oz. can black beans, drained, rinsed and puréed (I used dry beans and cooked before hand, boiling for about 20 minutes)
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder


  • ½ cup soy margarine
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 Tbs. frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 12 chocolate kisses (I omitted the kisses)
  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line 12 cupcake tins with paper liners.
  2. To make Cupcakes: Using electric mixer on high, beat margarine, sugar and eggs for 3 minutes, or until thick and creamy.
  3. Fold vanilla extract and orange zest, if using, into puréed beans. In small bowl, whisk together cocoa powder, flour and baking powder.
  4. Fold egg mixture into beans, then fold flour mixture into beans by thirds. Fill cupcake tins two-thirds full. Bake 20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes. Remove, and cool on rack.
  5. Meanwhile, to make Frosting: Using electric mixer, beat margarine until smooth. Beat in confectioners’ sugar then juice concentrate until smooth. If too stiff, add 1 tsp. water at a time. Tint with food coloring, if desired.

Chocolate Black Bean Cupcakes

I equally enjoyed shooting a quick photo of these cupcakes – my winter semester class has ended (finished Biology with an A, woo hoo!) so I have a couple weeks of freedom to get in little projects like that. 🙂 I’ve also been able to get some cross stitch in and plan out some quilting projects.

The weather is calling for lots of snow snow at the end of this week and I already have a couple ideas in mind of things to cook if we’re stuck indoors for a bit. I don’t know what it is about snow that makes me want to cook even more than usual, but I know I’m not alone in this! 🙂 I think I’m going to try out homemade marshmallows for the first time, prepare a large amount of my new favorite chicken and broccoli curry dish for meal prep (and take some pretty photos of it!), and probably make one of the many fun pizza recipes we’ve been saving that we know C will like. 🙂

What do you like to do when winter weather has you stuck inside? Cook, craft, games? Leave a comment and let me know!