December 5, 2022

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Healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins | A Mind “Full” Mom

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are packed with zucchini and double the chocolate for a muffin that tastes like dessert, yet is healthy enough for breakfast.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffin with bite out of it next to chocolate chips and cocoa powder.

If you have found yourself with an abundant amount of zucchini, you MUST make these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins. STAT!

These Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are tender, light, and filled with chocolate, yet good for you! Instead of being loaded with refined flour and sugars, this recipe is made with whole grains, naturally sweetened, lower in fat, yet tastes sinful.

Just like Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins and Healthy Pumpkin Muffins, no one will complain about eating their veggies when they bite into one of these Healthy Zucchini Muffins. This healthy muffin recipe makes eating veggies feel decadent!

Notes on Ingredients

Ingredients for zucchini muffins labeled on counter.
  • Whole White Wheat Flour: Instead of all-purpose flour, I opt to use whole white wheat flour, which is 100% whole grain, yet bakes up just as light as all-purpose flour. for a dose of whole grains.
  • Chocolate Chips: Chocolate Chips can be omitted to keep these muffins 100% free from refined sugars, but I recommend adding them for a burst of fudgy deliciousness. I love to use mini chocolate chips but regular chocolate chips work as well.
  • Applesauce: Applesauce is used to cut back on the amount of oil needed, while still keeping these muffins light and tender. It also helps to naturally sweeten the muffins.
  • Oil: Use either canola oil or melted, cooled coconut oil.
  • Honey Instead of using granulated sugars, these muffins are sweetened with honey.
  • Milk: To keep the muffins light and fluffy, milk is needed. You can use dairy or non-dairy milk for these zucchini muffins.

How To Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

  • Shred one medium zucchini, using a boxed grater or a food processor fitted with the grating blade.
  • Place the shredded zucchini into a piece of cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel and give a firm squeeze over a sink or bowl. Set the zucchini aside until ready to use.

It is important to remove the excess water from the zucchini, just as you would when making Zucchini Bread. This will keep the muffins from becoming dense and mushy.

Side by side photo showing grating zucchini.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk or sift together flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together.

Because cocoa powder, baking powder, and baking soda are all prone to clumping together, sifting the ingredients through a fine-mesh strainer will keep your batter lump-free and each bite of your zucchini muffin delish.

Side by side bowl showing dry ingredients before and after sifting.
  • In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together honey, egg, applesauce, oil, milk, and vanilla together.
Side by side bowl before and after mixing together the wt ingredients.
  • Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir together until JUST combined, being careful to not over-mix.
  • Fold shredded zucchini and chocolate chips into the muffin batter.
Side by side photo showing muffin batter before and after adding zucchini and chocolate chips.
  • Measure out ¼ cup of the batter into lined or greased muffin cups and top with additional chocolate chips if desired.

Using an ice cream scoop will keep each muffin uniform in size, and is the least messy way to distribute the batter into the muffin tin.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffin Batter in muffin tip topped with chocolate chips.
  • Bake the zucchini muffins until the muffins rise, the tops are set, and a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out dry.
  • Remove zucchini muffins from the oven and place the muffin tin on a cooling rack for 10 minutes then remove muffins from the tin and let cool completely on a cooling rack.
Healthy Zucchini Muffins on wire rack cooling.

Storing Zucchini Muffins

Because these zucchini muffins are loaded with zucchini and are whole grains, they are best stored in the refrigerator if stored longer than 24 hours.

Once cooled, pop the muffins into an airtight container or freezer-safe bag and place the muffins in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Alternatively, you can freeze the muffins for up to 3 months. Just pop them into a freezer-safe storage container bag once fully cooled and place them into the freezer.

Recipe Modifications

  • Gluten-Free Zucchini Muffins: Replace the whole white wheat flour with an equal amount of 1:1 gluten-free all-purpose flour blend. I have done this many times with success.
  • Dairy-Free Zucchini Muffins: Be sure you use dairy-free chocolate chips and use your favorite non-dairy milk in place of milk for this recipe. I tend to use unsweetened plain almond milk when making these muffins dairy-free. Canned coconut milk is a great addition if using melted coconut oil, just be warned it will result in a slight “coconut” flavor. But chocolate + coconut is a great match!
  • Egg-Free Zucchini Muffins: A flax egg substitute can be made to keep these muffins egg-free with great success. Simply mix 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed with 2 tablespoons of water and let sit for 5 minutes before adding to the muffin batter.
  • Vegan Zucchini Muffins: With SEVERAL changes, these muffins can be made vegan-friendly. I have done this many times and the results are spectacular. Use a flax egg to replace the egg, use maple syrup instead of honey, and use non-dairy chocolate chips, and non-dairy milk.

More Recipes using Zucchini

If you enjoyed these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffin with bite out of it next to chocolate chips and cocoa powder

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

These Healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are made with whole grains, naturally sweetened, and packed with zucchini, yet are still super soft, tender, and delicious!

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Course: Bread

Cuisine: American

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Servings: 12

Calories: 153kcal

Prevents your screen from going dark while preparing the recipe.

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a muffin pan by lining it with paper or silicone liners or greasing the muffin cups really well with butter or nonstick spray.

  • Wash and dry the zucchini. Cut off the stem of the zucchini and using a box grater or food processor fitted with a grating blade, shred the zucchini. Remove excess moisture from the zucchini by placing the shredded zucchini into cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel and squeezing it firmly over the sink. Alternatively, place the shredded zucchini into a fine-mesh colander and use your hands to really press down hard on the zucchini to remove the excess liquid.

  • Using a fine-mesh strainer, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt over a large mixing bowl. Alternatively, whisk the ingredients together, just be sure to remove any lumps.

  • In a separate smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, egg, applesauce, honey, and vanilla extract until well combined. 

  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined, careful to not overmix, as this can result in tough muffins.

  • Fold the shredded, drained zucchini and ⅓ cup of chocolate chips into the batter.

  • Scoop out ¼ cup of batter into each muffin cup. Sprinkle each muffin with a couple of chocolate chips if desired.

  • Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out dry. 

  • Place the baked muffins on a cooling rack and allow them to sit in the muffin tin for 5-10 minutes, before removing them from the tin. Allow the muffins to cool fully before enjoying.

Notes

Storage: Store zucchini muffins in an air-tight container at room temperature for 24 hours and then store in the refrigerator for 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months. 
Gluten-Free Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, use an all-purpose gluten-free 1 to 1 baking flour
Dairy-Free Zucchini Muffins: Be sure you use dairy-free chocolate chips and use your favorite non-dairy milk in place of milk for this recipe. I tend to use unsweetened plain almond milk when making these muffins dairy-free.
Egg-Free Zucchini Muffins: A flax egg substitute can be made to keep these muffins egg-free with great success. Simply mix 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed with 2 tablespoons of water and let sit for 5 minutes before adding to the muffin batter.
Vegan Modifications: Use a flax egg to replace the egg, use maple syrup in place of honey, and use non-dairy chocolate chips and milk. 
Canola Oil Substitutes: Melted and cooled butter or coconut oil can be used in place of canola oil. 

Nutrition

Calories: 153kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 155mg | Potassium: 160mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 68IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 1mg

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This post was originally published in 2018 but updated in 2022 with a new video.