Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are packed with zucchini and double the chocolate for a muffin that tastes like dessert, yet healthy enough for breakfast. Made with whole grains and packed with zucchini, these muffins are still super soft, tender, and most importantly, delicious!
No one will complain about eating their veggies when enjoying one of these Healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins. Just like Carrot Cake Muffins and Pumpkin Muffins, this healthy muffin recipe makes eating veggies decadent!
Whether you happen to have a garden overflowing with zucchini or have just finished visiting your farmer's market, these Zucchini Muffins are a perfect way to put that zucchini to use!
Made with tons of fresh zucchini, these light muffins are packed with chocolate---double the chocolate! Which means you can eat your vegetables while enjoying chocolate. It seems too good to be true!
I have been making these zucchini muffins for over a decade! The inspiration for these chocolate muffins came from my great aunt's Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cake. I remember thinking it was so awesome to enjoy my vegetables as a dessert, and I thought my children would enjoy that as well.
Instead of a rich cake or muffin that was loaded with refined flour and sugars, I decided to make a few swaps so that we could have a muffin suitable for breakfast, but would taste like dessert!
After trial and error, I created a Chocolate Zucchini Muffin that is light and fluffy, full of veggies, fiber, and whole grains. It is a recipe my family enjoys each year when zucchini grows with abundance.
Healthier Ingredient Choices
- Whole White Wheat Flour: Instead of all-purpose flour, I opt to use whole white wheat flour for a dose of whole grains. However, you can use all-purpose flour or even 1:1 Gluten-Free Flour Blend, for a gluten-free option.
- Chocolate Chips: Chocolate Chips can be omitted to keep these muffins 100% free from refined sugars, but I recommend adding for a burst of fudgy deliciousness. I love to use mini chocolate chips but regular chocolate chips work as well. And be sure to use dairy-free chocolate chips if you need your muffins to be dairy-free or vegan.
- 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.
- Canola Oil: Just a small amount of oil is needed. Feel free to use melted and cooled butter or coconut oil in place of canola oil.
- Honey/Maple Syrup: Instead of using granulated sugars, these muffins are sweetened with honey or maple syrup. I personally prefer honey in these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins as the honey does not overpower the chocolate flavor, as the maple tends to, but if you need a vegan-friendly muffin, use maple syrup in place of the honey.
- Milk: To keep the muffins light and fluffy, milk is needed. But you can use dairy or non-dairy milk, depending on your preference. I tend to use unsweetened plain almond milk when making these muffins. 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!
- Eggs: A flax egg substitute can be made to keep these muffins egg-free with great success.
How To Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- Line a 12 cup muffin tin with silicone liners or paper liners.
- Alternatively, you can grease your muffin tin well with butter, melted coconut oil, canola oil or cooking spray.
- Shred one medium zucchini, using a boxed grater or a food processor fitted with the grating blade.
- Remove excess water from shredded zucchini by either placing shredded zucchini in a fine-mesh strainer and pushing down with a bowl or spoon to release liquid from zucchini OR place shredded zucchini in cheesecloth, or clean kitchen towel and give a firm squeeze over sink or bowl (my preferred method.)
- Whisk or sift together flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together. I prefer to sift the ingredients to help remove any baking powder or baking soda lumps. Not a pleasant taste if you bite into a lump!
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together honey, egg, applesauce, oil, milk, and vanilla together.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir together until JUST combined, being careful to not over-mix.
- Fold shredded zucchini and ⅓ cup chocolate chips into the muffin batter.
- Use an ice cream scoop, or ¼ cup measuring cup to evenly measure batter out into prepared muffin tin.
- Top each muffin with a few more chocolate chips if desired.
- 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 oven and place muffin tin on a cooling rack.
- Let cook for 10 minutes then remove muffins from tin and let cool completely on a cooling rack.
- Store or serve.
Storing Zucchini Muffins
Because these zucchini muffins are loaded with zucchini and are whole grain, they are best stored in the refrigerator if storing 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.
More Zucchini Recipes
Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- 1 ½ cups white wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup honey or maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- ½ cup applesauce unsweetened
- ¼ cup milk any variety
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup zucchini shredded, and squeezed dry
- ½ cup chocolate chips optional, and divided
- Shred zucchini and place in colander and press down hard or squeeze excess liquid out of zucchini by placing zucchini in cheesecloth or a clean kitchen towel and squeezing firmly.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, until well combined. It is an even better idea to sift the dry ingredients together to remove any lumps from flour or cocoa powder.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together milk, oil, egg, applesauce, honey, and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined, careful to not over mix.
- Fold zucchini and ⅓ cup chocolate chips into the batter.
- Scoop out ¼ cup batter into prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle each muffin with a couple chocolate chips if desired.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out dry.
- You can use any type of milk you like for these chocolate zucchini muffins.
- Feel free to use flax egg in place of egg if you need Egg Free Zucchini Muffins.
- I use whole white wheat flour to keep these muffins full of whole grains, yet light and fluffy. You can substitute all-purpose or whole wheat flour for the whole white wheat flour in this recipe.
- If you are looking for Gluten-Free Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, use an all-purpose gluten-free 1 to 1 baking flour.
- Melted and cooled butter or coconut oil can be used in place of canola oil.
- Store zucchini muffins at room temperature for 24 hours and then store in the refrigerator for 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.