Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

double chocolate zucchini muffins

I’m a neglectful mother, at least to the fruits and vegetables in my garden of late. My poor zucchini were abandoned for a month in a tangle of tomato plants and grew into something better suited to hitting baseballs than being cooked into a tender saute. Just last week, I harvested three of them, determined to coax their firm flesh and seedy interiors into something worth eating. After some trial and error, I landed on these terrific Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins.

A Baking Experiment

That trial and error included an experiment at the suggestion of a neighbor who told me that overgrown zucchini can be cooked down with brown sugar and mashed into a sweet compote, akin to applesauce. I dutifully cubed and cooked 10 whole cups, excited that I was onto something BIG. Once finished, the kids and I eagerly dug in, but stopped short after one bite. “Squashsauce” was entirely inedible and found its way into the compost.

Zucchini Chocolate Muffin Success

Luckily, my next attempt more than made up for that first failure. The muffins are moist and tender. The chocolate comes from both cocoa powder and chocolate chips. The kids loved them and they’ve been in our snack rotation for weeks. If you take a bite with your eyes closed, you’d never suspect vegetables were part of the equation (as an aside, eating chocolate with your eyes closed is highly underrated).

Serve the Chocolate Zucchini Muffins as a Snack or Sweet

The treats are wholesome enough to serve as an afternoon snack along with a glass of milk. Make them in a mini size for a lighter bite or smaller appetites. A full cup and a half of zucchini goes into the batter, along with whole wheat flour, yogurt, and just enough chocolate chips for good measure. You could also serve these up cupcake style, with a lighter shower of confectioners’ sugar or a smear of frosting if you’re looking for a dressier affair. You can also bake the batter in a loaf pan and drizzle it with melted chocolate.
double chocolate zucchini muffins

Better than Store-Bought

Whether you consider these cupcakes or muffins, they are bound to be an improvement over store bought, particularly on the nutrition front. These weigh in at about 250 calories each (99 for the mini size), which isn’t bad, especially when you consider that a chocolate muffin from Starbucks is nearly 500 calories, the ones from Dunkin’ Donuts and Costco, top 600.

With zucchini abundant in markets, now is a good time to get baking. A couple of medium zucchini will more than suffice for the recipe. And don’t worry, you needn’t scare up a neglected, overgrown one to make it, but if you’d like, I’ve got plenty to go around.

If you like Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins, check out:

Chocolate Beet and Zucchini Bundt Cake

Mini Flourless Chocolate Olive Oil Cakes, a recipe I developed for Simply Recipes

Chocolate Sweet Potato Brownies

Dark Chocolate Superfood Bark

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

If little ribbons of green zucchini in these cupcakes will be a turnoff to your kids, feel free to peel the squash before grating it. If you want to get a little more decadent, frost them with a classic buttercream. The will keep up to four days in the fridge or wrapped well, will freeze for up to one month.
Course Dessert, Snack
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 12 regular muffins (or 30 mini size, or 1 loaf)
Calories 249 kcal
Author Katie Morford


  • cups coarsely grated zucchini
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/3 cup avocado oil or canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cups whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line 1 dozen regular-size muffin tins or 36 mini muffin tins with paper liners or generously grease with oil or butter. If you want to bake this in a loaf pan, generously grease a 9x5-inch pan well with oil or butter.
  2. Put the grated zucchini in a colander set over the sink and use your hands to squeeze out some of the liquid. Leave in the sink until ready to use.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with an electric mixer on high until foamy and light yellow, a minute or so. Add the yogurt, oil, sugar, and vanilla and beat again on medium until one even color and consistency, another minute. Set aside. You can also do this with a whisk and a little elbow grease.

  4. In a medium bowl, combine the whole-wheat pastry flour, all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Stir well with a fork to blend all the ingredients.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and beat on medium just until evenly mixed together, scraping down the sides as needed.
  6. Add the zucchini and chocolate chips to the batter. Mix until just combined.
  7. For full-size cupcakes, fill each tin with a scant ¼ cup of batter. For mini cupcakes, figure about 1 ½ tablespoons of batter each (although this can vary depending on the size of your muffin tins).
  8. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 28 minutes for full-size cupcakes, closer to 20 minutes for minis, and about an hour for a loaf.

  9. Remove from oven and leave on the counter until completely cool. Finish with a light dusting of confectioners' sugar, your favorite chocolate frosting, or 1/4 cup of melted chocolate chips (in the case of the loaf).


03.21.2013 at6:53 PM #


These were easy and very good! Three out of four of us gave them a 10. 🙂 I was in a hurry, so tried to get them into 12 regular muffin cups, so I had to cook them about 35 minutes and even then they were a little bit soft, but not raw. I froze most and will send them in my first grader’s lunches this month.

03.21.2013 at6:53 PM #

Katie Morford

Wow … A 10 from 3 out of 4. I’ll take it!

03.29.2013 at6:48 AM #


These are the best!! This has become my go to recipe for chocolate muffins. I make them all the time. You should have seen my mother in law’s face when I dumped all the zucchini in the dough, and then her face when she tasted the result. She loved them. So yummy, chocolaty and moist. Recommended by the whole family in this household,

03.29.2013 at6:48 AM #

Katie Morford

Awesome! I’m actually making these tomorrow.

07.18.2013 at8:41 AM #

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My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different web page and thought I might check things out.
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08.07.2013 at11:43 AM #

Pavan Sanghera

Great way to sneak in some greens

09.25.2013 at5:04 PM #


I have no idea how I came to this site 🙂 But I’m glad I’m here! I’ve made these muffins with my 4 year old yesterday and he was so excited to try them! Have they cooled enough? – he kept asking 🙂
Mine didn’t turn out this smooth like yours on the pic, more chunkylike on the top, however the taste was awesome! This will be my ultimate ‘save the zucchini’ recipe from now on.
Thank you!!!

09.25.2013 at5:04 PM #

Katie Morford

Great. So glad you found me. It’s a handy, end-of-summer recipe when zucchini are in abundance!

08.19.2014 at8:32 PM #


Awesome recipe! I used my food processor, on the fine grate setting, for the zucchini. No one could tell that there was zucchini in these cupcakes. Served them to my kids, husband, father, aunt, neighbor and myself of course. No one could have just one. Next time I may leave out the cinnamon though, so the chocolate flavor can come through more. Can’t wait to make another batch. Thanks for sharing your recipe(:

08.19.2014 at8:32 PM #

Katie Morford

Oh good! So gladd it was a success. I think these would be great without the cinnamon. Don’t want anything interfering with chocolate :)!

11.17.2014 at3:46 PM #


Growing up my Gram made chocolate zucchini cake. These sound really good. Maybe sprinkle a couple of peanut butter chips on top and it’s like my childhood dessert 🙂

11.17.2014 at3:46 PM #

Katie Morford

Nothing like those childhood food memories. I hope this one measures up. It’s one of my kids’ favorites.

09.02.2015 at9:07 PM #


Kyle is allergic to dairy — so if I don’t include the yogurt, what should I replace it with?

09.02.2015 at9:07 PM #

Katie Morford

I’d probably try a non-dairy yogurt, say soy yogurt. I would think that would work. Let me know how it goes 🙂

07.13.2023 at7:11 AM #

Joanne Peterson

Growing up, my parents didn’t eat the young summer squash. They waited until they were large, peeled them boiled in a small amount of water until tender, and drained and mashed them. We ate it with just butter, salt and pepper. We did like them this way, I still do. These zucchini muffins look wonderful! We already like cornbread and cornbread muffins with grated zucchini, so I don’t think I would have to sell them on zucchini in chocolate muffins. Thank you for the recipes you so generously share!

07.13.2023 at7:11 AM #

Katie Morford

Thanks for the tip on the summer squash!

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