Whoa, time warp. I’m missing two weeks here. What just happened?? It seems someone clicked the hyperdrive button on my life – and now it’s October. OCTOBER, people! As in, the beginning of The Holidays (at least, for my business). As in, I’m about to take a deep breath and dive headfirst into a multi-month stretch of madness – seven day work weeks, 12 and 14 and 16 hour days, and because of that, the only time of year I can hang out with chocolate all day and still lose weight. Not even kidding.
So, I’ve been a bit absent around here, and I’m about to become more absent, sorry to say. I have some MAJOR. DEVELOPMENTS. happening in both business and personal life – of which I cannot yet speak – that are going to cause chaos for a while, but will ultimately be very VERY exciting. I’m hoping to still get back here and post a bit, and to line up a guest post or two, but in case things go silent, fear not, all is well!
But I’m not gone yet. Let’s talk muffins. And zucchini. And heck, let’s throw some chocolate in there. Because, well, yum! Zucchini bread in any form is like a graham cracker – a treat masquerading as “healthy”. If it’s a cracker, it must be better for me than a cookie! If it’s got a vegetable in it, it must be good for me!
I chose to embrace zucchini bread in its true sweet nature, and amp it up by adding a chocolate swirl to the batter, and topping the whole thing off with a buttery, sugary, streusel chock full of chocolate chips and walnuts. And muffin-ify it to make it portable and pre-portioned (two very important things in my world).
Chocolate Swirl Zucchini Muffins (loosely adapted from a Betty Crocker zucchini bread recipe)
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup applesauce (or vegetable oil if you prefer)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1-1/2 cups zucchini, grated (about one medium)
- 1-1/2 cups all purpose flour (or use half whole wheat flour)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder
- 2 Tbsp cold butter
- 2 Tbsp flour
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup chocolate chips
- dash cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prep 8 regular muffin tins either with baking spray or paper liners.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, applesauce (or oil), sugar, and vanilla until mixed. Stir in zucchini. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Add dry ingredients to zucchini mixture and stir gently until completely incorporated. Portion approximately half of the batter into the prepared muffin tins. Add the cocoa powder to the remaining batter and mix well. Divide the chocolate batter among the muffin tins, layering it on top of the plain batter. Use a butter knife or small spatula to careful swirl the two batters together in each tin (I forgot to do that part). In the bowl you used for your dry ingredients, mix the streusel. Using your fingers (or a fork if you prefer), cut together the flour, butter, sugar, and cinnamon until crumbly. Add chocolate chips and walnuts and mix well. Divide the streusel among the filled muffin tins. Bake 20-25 minutes, or until a tooth pick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Makes 8 muffins.