Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are packed with zucchini and double the chocolate for a muffin that tastes like dessert, yet is healthy enough for breakfast.
While nothing compares to my mom's zucchini bread and I could go to town snacking on air fryer zucchini fries, I can never resist a chocolate zucchini muffin. And these double chocolate zucchini muffins are my kid's all-time favorite zucchini recipe.
Why You Will Love These Muffins
- Good For You. Instead of being loaded with refined flour and sugars, this recipe for chocolate zucchini muffins is made with whole grains, sweetened with honey, and lower in fat. But don't worry, even those these muffins are healthy, they taste sinful.
- Amazing Texture. Even though these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins are made with whole wheat flour, they bake up light and tender and stay perfectly moist thanks to the addition of zucchini and applesauce.
- Double the Chocolate. These zucchini muffins don't skimp on the chocolate. The batter is made with rich cocoa powder and the muffins are studded with chocolate chips.
- Filled with Vegetables. 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 your vegetables feel decadent!
Notes on Ingredients
- 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.
- 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, melted and cooled butter, or melted and 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 based on your preference.
How To Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
Step One: Prepare Zucchini. 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.
I find that the best way to remove the excess liquid from grated zucchini is to place it into a piece of cheesecloth and give it a good squeeze over the sink.
Step Two. Sift Dry Ingredients 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.
Step Three: Combine Wet Ingredients. It is best to whisk the honey, egg, applesauce, oil, milk, and vanilla together prior to adding them to the flour mixture. This will help prevent overmixing the batter, which can result in dense muffins.
Step Three: Fold Together. When working with muffins or quickbread recipes, you don't want to overmix the ingredients. It is best to gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until JUST combined. Once you no longer see pockets of flour, add in the prepared zucchini and chocolate chips, and using a spatula fold them into the muffin batter until JUST distributed.
Step Four: Fill Muffin Tin. My best tip for scooping muffin batter into a prepared muffin tin is to use an ice cream scoop. 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.
Step Five: Bake. 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. I recommend checking on the muffins 5-10 minutes prior to the baking time listed to ensure your muffins don't overbake.
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.
- 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
- Healthy Zucchini Bread
- Zucchini and Squash Saute
- Air Fryer Zucchini Fries
- Italian Baked Vegetables
- Instant Pot Minestrone Soup
- Air Fryer Squash
If you enjoyed these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- 1 ½ cups whole white wheat flour or all-purpose 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 unsweetened applesauce
- 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
- 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.
This post was originally published in 2018 but updated in 2022 with a new video.