Light and tender, these gluten free double chocolate carrot zucchini muffins are moist, fluffy and really chocolatey. Perfect for breakfast or a healthy snack, and a delicious way to sneak in some vegetables.
why you'll love these chocolate muffins
- Healthy - these double chocolate muffins are made with wholesome ingredients like almond flour, fresh zucchini and carrot, and maple syrup. They're gluten-free, dairy-free, have no butter, no oil, and refined sugar-free.
- Versatile - an easy grab-and-go healthy snack for breakfast or an afternoon treat.
- Quick and easy - zucchini and carrot take no time to grate. Whisk the eggs and wet ingredients then add the dry ingredients, give it a quick mix, spoon into muffin cups and bake. This recipe couldn't be easier.
- Moist and fluffy - the zucchini carrot muffins are moist, rich and tender. To make them more fluffy, whisk your eggs longer to add a little extra rise. Also, sifting your almond flour, cacao powder, baking soda and sea salt will add more air into the dry ingredients, helping to expand the size of the muffins. Careful not to over mix the batter!
If you love healthy baking you need to try my Oatmeal Strawberry Crumble Bars (gf, nut free), Best Healthy Low Sugar Carrot Cake and my Best Paleo Banana Bread with Coconut Flour. If you need some healthy breakfast ideas, try my Lemon Poppy Seed Scones (no egg, gf), Apple Buckwheat Pancakes with Diced Maple Apples (yum!), and my Carrot Cake Oatmeal Nut Breakfast Bars.
key ingredients and substitutions
- Almond flour - adds moisture and protein to the chocolate zucchini muffins.
- Cacao powder - adds deep chocolatey flavor to the double chocolate muffins. You can substitute with unsweetened cocoa powder if that's what you have in your pantry.
- Eggs - add structure and moisture. Use at room temperature if swapping melted coconut oil for the apple sauce. I have not tried this recipe with flax egg.
- Apple sauce - replaces the need for oil in the recipe. You can substitute with the same amount of melted coconut oil if you prefer. Or, try banana, pumpkin purée, or mashed baked sweet potato.
- Maple syrup - adds natural sweetness. Swap for honey if you prefer a little extra sweetness.
- Zucchini - is high in antioxidants and fiber. It's fairly mild in flavor and provides texture and moisture. No need to peel the zucchini, just shred on a box grater.
- Note: if the shredded zucchini is really moist, squeeze it into a paper towel to remove any excess moisture.
- Carrots - are rich in beta-carotene and fiber and also add texture and moisture to the chocolate zucchini carrot muffins. I usually peel the carrots before shredding on a box grater.
- Dark chocolate chips - adds more chocolate flavor with little chocolate morsels in every bite! I use dairy free and gluten free chocolate chips from Enjoy Life.
See recipe card for all ingredients and quantities.
how to make double chocolate zucchini carrot muffins
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners or grease with coconut oil.
- Add eggs, apple sauce, maple syrup and vanilla to a large bowl.
- Whisk until slightly frothy, 1-2 minutes.
- Add almond flour, cacao powder, baking soda and sea salt.
- Add zucchini, carrot and chocolate chips.
- Divide batter into prepared muffin tin. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
- Gently stir to combine. Careful not to over mix.
- Fold together, careful not to over mix.
- Cool completely on wire rack.
Hint: if your almond flour and cacao powder are lumpy, pass through a sieve to break up the lumps and fluff the dry ingredients. This will add more aeration to the batter and the inside of your muffins will be fluffier.
tips, tricks and variations
Smoother texture - if your almond flour and cacao powder are lumpy, sift before adding to the wet ingredients to avoid powdered lumps in the batter.
More chocolate - use extra chocolate chips to decorate the tops of the muffins before placing in the oven.
Store - store in an airtight container on the counter for 2 days or in the fridge for up to a week. The muffins can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Wrap them individually to make a great grab-and-go snack.
No need to peel the zucchini before grating. If the carrot is fairly fresh, just give it a good scrub and grate. Otherwise, peel the carrot first before shredding.
The easiest way to shed zucchini or shred carrots is on the course side of a box grater. It's also quick and easy clean up. You can also use a food processor but your may end up with a few roughly chopped chunks in the mix.
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