These Zucchini Muffins are quick and easy to make in one bowl. They’re soft and fluffy and one of the best ways to enjoy fresh zucchini!
Do you get excited when zucchini season arrives? I sure do! There are so many ways to enjoy fresh zucchini. You can grill it, sauté it or roast it and enjoy delicious baked zucchini. You can spiralize it into zucchini noodles for a lighter alternative to pasta. You can even make stuffed zucchini.
When you add zucchini to baked goods like these zucchini bread muffins, you can’t taste the zucchini in the finished product (at least I can’t). You know it’s there because you see the colorful bits of green, but all you taste is a light, tender muffin.
This zucchini muffins recipe makes the best soft, moist zucchini muffins! These healthy muffins are made with wholesome ingredients, including whole wheat flour and applesauce or banana. They are sweetened with honey instead of refined sugar. If you’re craving chocolate chip zucchini muffins, you can stir some chocolate chips into the batter. Or try my zucchini chocolate chip muffins recipe.
Baking with Zucchini
Since zucchini has a high water content, it can be tricky to bake with. Here are my tips to help you get the best results.
- To shred zucchini, I recommend using a box grater. Slice off one end and hold the zucchini firmly in your hand as you shred it. Leave the other end on the zucchini to hold on to as you shred it. I shred zucchini using the side with the largest holes on my box grater.
- After shredding zucchini I usually run a knife through it to chop the shreds just a bit smaller. This makes it more appealing to picky kids because the zucchini pieces are smaller in their muffins. 😉
- After shredding the zucchini, it’s important to squeeze out excess moisture so that it doesn’t make your batter too wet. To do this, wrap the shredded zucchini in a clean kitchen towel or paper towels and squeeze until you’ve gotten most of the liquid out.
- One medium sized zucchini will give you about one cup of shredded zucchini.
How to Make Zucchini Muffins
This easy recipe can be mixed up in just one bowl. Find the full recipe, including ingredient amounts, in the recipe box below. Here is a quick overview, with a few tips.
- Zucchini: Before you make the muffin batter, shred your zucchini and squeeze out the excess moisture (see my tips above).
- Butter: I like to use a small amount of butter in my muffin recipes because it adds flavor and gives the muffins a soft, moist texture. You can substitute coconut oil for dairy-free muffins.
- Mashed Banana or Applesauce: Since we are using just a small amount of butter, we need either applesauce or banana to give the muffins the best texture. Use mashed banana if you want banana zucchini muffins. Use applesauce if you don’t want your muffins to have banana flavor.
- Honey or Pure Maple Syrup: You can use either honey or pure maple syrup to sweeten the muffins.
- Eggs, Vanilla & Cinnamon: Eggs provide structure. Vanilla and cinnamon add flavor.
- Baking Powder, Baking Soda & Salt: These muffins rise beautifully, thanks to the baking powder and baking soda. Salt helps to bring out the other flavors in baked goods.
- White Whole Wheat Flour: You can use regular whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour if you do not have white whole wheat flour.
- Chocolate Chips and/or Chopped Nuts: These mix-ins are optional. The muffins are delicious without them! But I don’t know anyone who can resist a chocolate chip zucchini muffin. If you want to add nuts, I recommend walnuts or pecans.
- Melt the butter. I like to do this right in my mixing bowl (be sure it’s microwave-safe).
- Whisk in the other wet ingredients: mashed banana or applesauce, honey or maple syrup, vanilla and eggs.
- Whisk in the cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Be sure to whisk very well at this point. You don’t want to leave any clumps of baking powder or baking soda in your muffins.
- Gently stir in the flour using a rubber spatula. Fold in the zucchini and chocolate chips or nuts, if using. Be very careful to not over-mix the batter at this step.
- Scoop the batter into your muffin pan.
- Bake the muffins until a tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let them cool for a few minutes and then enjoy one, warm from the oven!
Baking Tips for Healthy Zucchini Muffins
- Be careful to not over-mix when you are stirring in the flour and zucchini. Mix just until the ingredients are incorporated. Over-mixing batter for muffins and quick breads can give you dense, gummy muffins.
- See my tips above about baking with zucchini.
- You can use this recipe to make mini muffins in a mini muffin pan. Bake mini muffins for 10 to 13 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
- You can store these zucchini muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. They also freeze well, wrapped airtight, for up to 3 months.
- 2 cups shredded fresh zucchini*, about 2 medium zucchini
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ½ cup mashed ripe banana, or applesauce
- ½ cup honey, or pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour, or all-purpose flour
- ½ cup chocolate chips or chopped nuts, optional
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray a muffin pan with cooking spray and set it aside.
- Wrap the shredded zucchini in a clean kitchen towel or paper towels and squeeze out excess moisture. Set aside.
- Place the butter in a large microwave-safe mixing bowl and melt it in the microwave. (Or, you can melt the butter in a pan on the stove.)
- To the bowl with the butter, add the mashed banana (or applesauce), honey (or pure maple syrup), vanilla and eggs. Whisk until well combined.
- Add the cinnamon, baking power, baking soda and salt. Whisk until very well combined, making sure there are no clumps of baking soda or baking powder in the batter. Add the white whole wheat flour and mix it in using a rubber spatula until just combined. Stir in the zucchini (and chocolate chips or nuts, if using), being careful to not over-mix the batter.
- Scoop the batter into the muffin pan, dividing it evenly between the 12 muffin wells. Bake muffins fro 16 to 18 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- I use a box grater to shred the zucchini. I like to run a knife through the zucchini a few times after shredding it to chop it a bit smaller.
- You can make mini muffins in a mini muffin pan. Bake mini muffins for 10 to 13 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. Recipe will make about 36 mini muffins.
- Muffins can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.