I confess: these chocolate zucchini muffins are the perfect excuse to basically eat chocolate cake for breakfast. Green veggies, not too sweet, and perfectly moist – you definitely won’t stop at one. So in one bite you’ll be indulging in your favorite comfort food and getting your greens at the same time.
(By the way, eating chocolate cake for breakfast isn’t the most outlandish idea. One study actually showed that people who ate chocolate cake for breakfast lost more weight and maintained that weight loss compared to folks whose breakfasts were, well, super boring. I’m paraphrasing, of course. You can read more about that study here.)
So there. I’ve given you permission to eat chocolate zucchini muffins at 6:45 am.
Also, Zucchini is Awesome
Okay, I’m really playing up the chocolate-for-breakfast idea here. But the other important word in the phrase “chocolate zucchini muffins” is zucchini, and it really is a vegetable worth talking about.
First of all, the zucchini is one of the few vegetables I actually like. It’s part of a short list that includes green beans and, oddly enough, broccoli. Also, squash, but that’s basically zucchini’s cousin so I’m not sure that counts.
So for me, I don’t actually have to hide my zucchini in this muffin recipe to eat it. I’m cool with cooking it up with some olive oil, salt and paprika.
But occasionally my kitchen is overrun with zucchini. Maybe I overzealously purchased too many and I need to eat them up before they start to turn. Or maybe a garden-tending friend gave me twenty to put a dent in their enormous harvest. If you’ve ever grown zucchini, then you know how easy it is to end up with enough to feed an elephant for a month (do elephants eat zucchini?).
So even though I like zucchini, I can’t eat it five times a day. In that case, it’s time to get creative and start combining zucchini with chocolate.
Back to the point: zucchini is actually pretty nutritious. It really doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Kale gets all the love these days, and frankly, my friend zucchini is feeling a little miffed.
For instance, did you know zucchini is rich in these nutrients?
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin K
Zucchini may also:
- Provide anti-inflammatory benefits to the digestive system. (source)
- Improve thyroid, adrenal, and insulin regulation. (source)
I seriously did not know that until I did some research for this post. I am further impressed by this delicious vegetable. Three cheers for our underrated pal zucchini!
Now that we’ve determined that both chocolate and zucchini are awesome, let’s combine them in this chocolate zucchini muffins recipe…
The Key to Intensely Moist Muffins
These muffins reach their peak of flavor and moistness after sitting overnight.
I’m really not kidding. They taste so much better, you’ll regret eating the one you gobbled down when the batch was fresh (I know, sometimes I can’t help myself either). It’s completely worth the wait.
So instead of worrying about cooking first thing in the morning, make these the night before and store them in an airtight container overnight. You’ll thank me in the morning. 😉
Tip for “Hiding” Your Zucchini
If you’re desperate to hide the zucchini from the kids in the house (of all ages), might I suggest shredding it very finely? You could even puree it completely. I honestly couldn’t tell there was zucchini in my muffins this morning, even though my food processor attachment shredded it pretty thick.
But… I know some kids are insanely adept at finding veggies. You know who I’m talking about. And if any of those types are hanging around your house, you may want to stick with the extra fine shred.
We don’t want to trigger mass panic when someone finds a tiny green piece in the middle of one of your incredibly delicious chocolate zucchini muffins. (Although then you can just eat it, which isn’t really such a terrible consequence.)
Also, you may want to cook these in the dead of night while the little tykes are sleeping so they don’t catch on…
Or just make them learn to eat their veggies? I know, I know. Easier said than done. (You saw my approved veggie list — my inner 5-year-old is still going strong. I’m not judging.)
Homemade Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
Deliciously moist and not too sweet - these chocolate zucchini muffins are the perfect way to get everyone to eat more greens!
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup coconut oil or grass-fed butter
- 2 tsp organic vanilla
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (I use Einkorn flour)
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups shredded zucchini (or about 2 medium-sized)
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds (optional for topping – substitute walnuts or pecans if you prefer)
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sugar and coconut oil on medium-low speed until creamy (about 30-60 seconds).
- Add eggs and vanilla, mixing on low until just blended.
- In a medium mixing bowl, stir together your dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt).
- Slowly add the dry ingredients into your egg mixture and mix on low until just moistened.
- Add shredded zucchini and fold in until it's evenly mixed.
- Fill muffin tin cups about 2/3 full with batter. Sprinkle pumpkin seeds on top.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes.
- Allow to cool completely before eating (overnight if possible).
Storage: Store in an airtight container on the counter and they'll last about 3 days (if you don't eat them by then - ha!). If you expect to store them up to a week, I recommend refrigerating them. You can also double or triple this batch and freeze the extras for many breakfasts to come.
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