I warned you in my last post that I’ve been going zucchini-crazy ;). Zucchini in #allthethings! Everyone knows the chocolate and zucchini combination is delicious. I’ve already posted several chocolate-zucchini recipes in the past (HERE and HERE and HERE), but surprisingly I haven’t posted a chocolate zucchini muffin before. If you’ve been reading the blog for any length of time, you know my love affair with muffins goes WAY back…way back to the 90’s when I would eat 3-4 muffins for breakfast. I wasn’t picky either; I even loved muffins from a mix with little fruit-flavored bits! I haven’t had a muffin-mix muffin in ages, but I still eat (and bake) muffins often. Although, now I try to stop at 1 or 2…it was hard with these though ;).

I set out to make a healthier chocolate zucchini muffin. It seems like most zucchini bread/muffin recipes have a lot of oil. I used applesauce instead to cut down on the fat/calories and swapped the white flour for white whole wheat flour. I love white whole wheat flour because you can use it in place of white flour in most baked goods and you can’t tell a difference. An entire zucchini makes them even healthier – it is a vegetable after all =) – and keeps the muffins moist. Of course, I wanted them to taste good too, so I added some chocolate chips. Let me emphasize, they taste delicious! They have a great texture, a rich chocolate flavor, and are perfectly moist. What more could you want in a muffin?!

I prefer miniature chocolate chips in these muffins for a more even distribution, but you can use whatever you have on hand. Although I made these in a standard muffin tin, I filled each one almost to the top so the resulting muffins are nice and big (but still only ~200 calories each and they don’t taste healthy at all!). They’re perfect for breakfast, but if you top them with some Nutella they’re a pretty great dessert too. Don’t ask me how I know ;). Enjoy!

(Healthier, Whole Wheat) Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

3/4 cup sugar
3 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1-3/4 cups white whole wheat flour
1/4 cup Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder
1-1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1-1/2 cups shredded zucchini (~1 medium)
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners or spray with nonstick spray.
2. In large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil, vanilla, eggs, and applesauce until combined. Add in flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda. Stir until just combined. Fold in zucchini and chocolate chips.
3. Divide batter among prepared muffin cups – the cups will be full almost to the top. Sprinkle with additional chocolate chips if desired. (This just makes them look prettier.)
4. Bake in preheated oven for 20-22 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Remove to wire rack to cool completely. Makes 12 muffins.
Notes: Muffins will keep at room temperature for a couple days, but after that store in the fridge. Alternatively, you could freeze the muffins by wrapping them individually in plastic wrap. The fresher the muffins are when you freeze them, the fresher they will taste when you eat them after they have thawed.
*adapted from Cooking Light

Nutritional info (per muffin): 208 calories; 7.6 g fat; 34.4 g carbohydrates; 4.2 g fiber; 4.6 g protein.

Categories: Breads, Breakfast, Muffins

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