These healthy Chocolate Zucchini Muffins with chocolate chips are lightened up with a few sneak ingredients that add nutrition without sacrificing the decadent, fudgy taste we’re after when we reach for a chocolate-for-breakfast muffin.
Zucchini. Loaded with fiber, vitamin B6, folate, and vitamin C, zucchini is one of my very favorite vegetables to sneak into baked goods (like my favorite Zucchini Banana Bread) because it packs in the nutrients with an almost imperceptible flavor. It makes muffins moist too.
Avocado. The “butter” of the fruit and vegetable world makes the muffins (and these Avocado Brownies) fudgy. Its taste is super duper subtle. A few of my friends make them routinely for their kids, and the kiddos don’t notice it either.
Coconut Oil. For an ideal texture to these decadent double chocolate zucchini muffins.
Olive oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil are all suitable swaps for coconut oil.
Egg. Adds tenderness and softness while also aiding in the muffins’ rise.
Coconut Sugar. I like using coconut sugar in baking (I also use it in these Gingerbread Muffins) because it is just as sweet but often less processed than regular sugar.
You can use brown sugar in place of coconut sugar in this recipe if you prefer.
Choice of Milk. I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk when I make these healthy chocolate zucchini muffins, but you could use any type of dairy or plant-based milk you enjoy.
White Whole Wheat Flour. My favorite stealthy healthy swap in baking (hello, Healthy Blueberry Muffins). White whole wheat flour contains more fiber and iron but keeps baked goods light and fluffy.
All purpose flour can be used instead of white whole wheat flour. You could also use regular whole wheat flour if you don’t mind a slightly drier and denser muffin. Or, try a 50/50 blend of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour.
Cocoa Powder. For deep and intense chocolate flavor. (These Chocolate Muffins are another decadent chocolate breakfast treat.)
Baking Soda. Leavens the muffins to give them that perfect rise.
Vanilla. Balances and enhances all that chocolatey goodness.
Cinnamon. For some subtle earthy spice. (Cinnamon lovers would also enjoy these Applesauce Muffins.)
Chocolate Chips. Because why stop with just cocoa powder? A few handfuls of semi-sweet chocolate chips take these healthy zucchini muffins (and Zucchini Cookies with Chocolate Chips) to next-level deliciousness.
Squeeze out as much water from the zucchini as possible.
Beat the avocado with the sugar and wet ingredients.
In a second bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.
Gradually mix together the dry and wet ingredients until just combined. Don’t overmix! Fold in the zucchini and chocolate chips.
For a pretty presentation, sprinkle chocolate chips on top of the muffins before baking.
Divide the batter into a greased muffin tin, filling about three-quarters of the way to the top. Bake chocolate zucchini muffins at 375 degrees F for 15 to 18 minutes, until the muffin tops are set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. Let cool in the pan slightly, then transfer to a wire rack. ENJOY!
Low-Calorie Chocolate Zucchini Muffins. Considering the healthy fats in these muffins, I find the calorie count reasonable, but if you’d like to reduce it, you can omit or reduce the amount of chocolate chips.
KetoChocolate Zucchini Muffins. This is one I’m afraid I can’t comment on, since I don’t follow a keto diet. I believe you will need to use an alternative sweetener, so I’d suggest looking for a recipe that is already designed this way. (The avocado, however, should be keto-friendly!)
To Store. Store leftovers at room temperature for up to 5 days.
To Freeze. Chocolate zucchini muffins frozen mean homemade breakfast, FAST! Individually wrap muffins and place them in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
With a healthy chocolate zucchini muffin in my right hand and another in my left hand, I’d say I’m really getting the hang of this whole balance thing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Without Whole Wheat Flour?
Sure! While I always like to sneak in a little whole wheat flour into my healthy baking recipes for extra nutrition, you can certainly swap the white whole wheat flour in this recipe for good old-fashioned all purpose flour if that’s what you keep stocked at home.
Can I Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins in a Loaf Pan?
I have not tried baking this recipe as a chocolate zucchini bread before so it would be an experiment. With that being said, I’m sure it could be done. The bake time would likely need to increase so just keep an eye on it as it bakes. (You could also try this Paleo Zucchini Bread with Chocolate Chips instead.)
Can I Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Without Egg?
I have not tried making these chocolate zucchini muffins without eggs before so it would be an experiment. If you would like to make these into vegan chocolate zucchini muffins or need to avoid eggs due to an allergy you could attempt to swap the egg for a flax egg (like in my Vegan Zucchini Bread). If you give it a try, I’d love to hear about your results.
Can I Make Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Without Sugar or Oil?
I do not recommend completely eliminating the sugar or oil in this recipe as they both are important for contributing moisture and tenderness to the muffins. In testing, I reduced them to the lowest amount I could without compromising the muffins’ texture. If you would like to experiment with other healthy swaps for them, however, please feel free. Just know the resulting muffin may be different from the original recipe.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Coat a 12-cup standard-size muffin tin with nonstick spray. Set aside.
Spread the zucchini out on a few layers of kitchen or paper towels. Press out as much water as possible, changing out the towels as needed. Set aside.
Place the avocado in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl. Beat with the mixer until the avocado is very smooth and no chunks remain. You should have about 2/3 cups of smooth avocado paste. Add the coconut oil, egg, coconut sugar, milk, and vanilla extract, beating until well combined.
In a separate bowl, stir together the white whole wheat flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, folding by hand with a wooden spoon or spatula and stirring just until the flour disappears. The batter will be very thick, almost like brownie batter, and the dry ingredients will take several strokes to work in between additions.
Fold in the zucchini and chocolate chips, reserving a few of the chocolate chips to sprinkle on top of the muffins.
Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling no more than three-quarters of the way to the top. Sprinkle with the remaining chocolate chips.
Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until the tops are set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Let cool in the pan for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
TO STORE: Leftovers may be stored at room temperature according to my guide for How to Store Muffins for up to 5 days.
TO FREEZE: You may keep chocolate zucchini muffins frozen in the freezer for up to 3 months.
TIP: If you would like to reduce the calorie count of the muffins, omit or reduce the number of chocolate chips.