So, if that's the case, why am I posting a recipe with bad photos, you might ask. Mostly because pretty much every person I've made these for asks for the recipe and I've been stingy with it until now. They're not the prettiest muffins you've ever seen. But I've yet to meet a child (or a child's mother) who doesn't like them.
I have been tweaking this recipe for years. I found the source in a 2012 Everyday with Rachel Ray magazine article about spas. The recipe came from the Aulani Resort, and I'm sure their muffins taste better because Hawaii. But we've eaten these in Maryland, Tennessee and Virginia, and they were still really good.
I made the recipe as written for my then 4 and 2-year-old daughters, and they were not having it. Visible zucchini and carrots in breakfast was just not happening. My initial changes were to disguise the veggies, and then to make the muffins simpler and healthier (eliminating cake flour, replacing vegetable oil with coconut oil, eliminating refined sugar).
This week we got zucchini in our garden box (digression: if you're in Richmond, Hampton Roads or--soon!-- Northern Virginia, you should check out The Farm Table for fresh, local produce delivered to your door for less than most CSAs. They're not paying me, I just love them that much.). My daughters, who previously turned up their noses at zucchini, immediately asked if we could make these muffins, and also proceeded to eat zucchini for dinner. Double chocolate muffins: the gateway to higher vegetable consumption.
(Whole wheat, dairy and refined sugar free)
What You'll Need:
3/4 cup white whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
1/4 cup oat bran (I grind rolled oats in my Nutribullet with the milling blade; you could probably use a blender or food processor)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar (or generous 1/4 cup honey)
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup grated zucchini
1/4 cup grated carrot
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips (Enjoy Life brand are dairy, soy and nut free)
What to Do:
1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Grease mini or full-size muffin tin or use paper liners
3. Combine dry ingredients (flour through nutmeg)
4. Make a well and add oil, egg and applesauce, sugar (or honey)
5. Stir in veggies and salt; fold in chocolate chips
6. Fill muffin cups halfway. Sprinkle with extra chocolate chips, if you want to get crazy, and bake mini muffins 12-14 minutes (18-20 minutes for full size muffins) or until muffins spring back in the center when touched lightly.