Here it is people! The recipe that started it all. Back in October of 2013, I originally posted a photo of my sneaky Chocolate Kale Muffins. The response was great and I got a lot of messages asking me for more recipes like this. It’s a yummy way to get my kids and husband to eat more greens and vegetables, willingly! I do tell them that these are made with vegetables, and that vegetables made all ways are yummy. So here is the updated recipe for my Double Chocolate Chip Zucchini Kale Muffins.
“Health-ing” Up My Favorite Recipes
I have not always loved fresh fruits, vegetables, and greens. As an adult, I had to re-educate myself about food and nutrition. I experimented with lots of recipes and dishes throughout my journey to loose weight and improve my health. I have come to love great, fresh produce. I want to pass along this love of fruits and veggies to my children, in hopes that they will never have to battle poor health issues or being overweight. I truly enjoy taking my favorite recipes as a child and “healthing” them up. I frequently add chopped or pureed vegetables to most of my dishes, but not to hide them from my family. I let them know what I made their meals with, so they know that whole, fresh foods can taste good.
Prepping the Veggies
Zucchini are kale are so nutritious and very versatile. You can’t even tell they are in this muffin when you bite into it. I find the easiest way to incorporate them into a muffin batter is to steam and blend the zucchini and kale so that it becomes a smooth puree. First, wash and chop the zucchini into uniform pieces. I take my washed kale leaves and de-stem them by tearing the leafy part away from the fibrous stem. I find the stems are harder to puree. Next, I toss them into a large pot with a steamer basket and steam for at least 20 minutes, until they are good and tender. Once cooled, I put them in my Vitamix Blender and blend until smooth.
Pantry and Fridge Ingredients
This multigrain recipe calls for 2 kinds of flour, whole wheat flour and steel-cut oatmeal flour. (Here is my post for instructions on making your own steel-cut oatmeal flour.) And of course there has to be a good helping of cocoa powder. In my original recipe, I used 1/2 cup organic cane sugar. For this updated recipe, I used 1/2 cup homemade date puree. (Here is my post for the date puree recipe.) If you prefer, you could also use the same amount of honey as your sweetener. The date puree and honey would be added to the wet ingredients. In addition to these, I also added baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir the dry ingredients well.
The Wet Ingredients
I use coconut oil for this recipe, but you can use any oil you prefer. I had to melt my coconut oil first. I used date puree in lieu of sugar. I added a mixture of Greek yogurt and milk as a mock buttermilk, for more protein. Next comes the veggie puree. Lastly, one whole egg and vanilla. Stir the wet ingredients together.
Making the Batter
Once you have your dry and wet ingredients, you can combine them. I add the wet to the dry and mix well, until everything is combined and there is no more dry mix. Now you can fold in your chocolate chips or other add-ins, such as walnuts or pecans. Spoon them into a muffin tin lined with cupcake cups and bake for 25 minutes in a 350 F oven. This recipe will make 18 standard-sized muffins or 12 large muffins.
Once baked, let them cool on a rack and enjoy. You can store them in a sealed container or bag in the refrigerator for up to a week. I like to heat them in the microwave for 15 to 30 seconds. Just enough to warm them up. My whole family loves these and I hope that you do as well!
- 2 cups kale, chopped, large stems removed
- 2 small to medium zucchinis
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- ¾ cup steel-cut oatmeal flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup date puree
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 cup non-fat Greek Yogurt
- ¼ cup oil (I used coconut oil, but you can use any oil)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts (I omitted these)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line a muffin tin with paper liners.
- Wash the kale and zucchini and chop into small pieces, taking care to discard the large woody stalks of the kale. Place the kale and zucchini into a steamer basket over a pot of boiling water and cook for 20 minutes or until the kale is wilted. Note: if you don’t have a steamer basket or if yours is dysfunctional, bring 1 – 1 ½ inches of water to a boil in a small pot, add the vegetables and cover this will steam/boil them.
- Drain the kale and zucchini (if using the second method) and set aside until it is cool enough to handle. Use your immersion blender directly on the veggies in the pot or place the veggies into the bowl of a mini food processor or blender along with 1-2 tablespoons of the cooking liquid (or water or milk) and pulse until the kale and zucchini has been pureed smooth. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the date puree, yogurt ,milk , egg, oil, and vanilla. Fold in the veggie puree.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips, and nuts.
- Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling each cup about three quarters full of batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Enjoy warm from the oven or microwaved for 15 seconds before eating.
- Makes 18 muffins. Super Duper GOOD!