Beware - these Dark Chocolate Pistachio Zucchini Bread Muffins are, like, really good. I highly encourage sharing because their tender, fluffy nature and bold chunks of chocolate next to humble pistachio pieces is just the combination most of us need for breakfast or a sweet little snack. Plus, who can say no to a healthy homemade muffin?
What should I write about? This usually isn’t a problem for me. Usually, I know what I want to share in each post - be it a snippet of the process or the whole thing, or something totally unrelated to food. But, right now, and for the last 24 hours, my mind goes blank when I open up my computer to write something here. I texted Dad and asked if he had any advice, and of course he did because he’s a genius when it comes to writing, but still, nothing sticks.
Should I read my favorite blogs and see what they’ve been writing about lately, maybe even go back to their first few posts and watch their writing skills evolve? Another day, sure, but right now it’s crunch-time and this post needs to go live very soon, so there is no time for fooling around. P.S. The Pancake Princess, I could read your blog all day. I’m kind of in love with the way you write and with all of your bake-offs. And The First Mess, I just want to stare at your pictures while you style my kitchen and bake me a batch of your vegan cinnamon rolls. Actually - fun-fact - I made a list of all the bloggers I want to regularly stalk and you two are at the top of the list. Once I finish writing here, you can bet your last muffin I’ll be catching up on everyone’s posts and soaking up the inspiration because every blogger on my list is just radiant with the admirable quality.
Should I talk about the muffin? Like, yeah, definitely because you’re probably here mostly for the muffin, but you’re also reading this right now, so clearly both the muffin recipe and my writing hold some level of importance to you. Hey, thanks! Don’t worry, I’ll get to the recipe in a sec. First, I need to word-vomit all the thoughts that block up my mind when I sit down to write a post.
Should I talk about school? And how I’m graduating in 55 days (54 by the time you read this)? My guess is that you hear enough of that from me and are probably ready for a change of subject. But real quick - can I just tell you HOW EXCITED I AM to be done with classes, with homework, with studying for exams, and honestly, with feeling a lot “less than” than my peers. No need to get super emotionally deep here, but my major is extremely competitive and some of my professors are not shy when it comes to encouraging us (the nice way of saying it) to work, find internships, get all A’s, volunteer, and the list goes on. Fitting into only one or two of those categories doesn’t feel awesome when I’m surrounded by many students who fit into most or all of them.
Should I talk about moving to Minnesota? Did you know it’s about 27 degrees below zero there right now? I’m moving in July and might need to start prepping for such frigid temps right away. San Luis Obispo is spoiling us in the community with relatively warm weather right now, but we’re also getting some much-needed rain and I’m loving allllllll of it. My future-oriented mind can’t stop reflecting on the last 4 years here and ruminating over how much I will miss it. UGH. Moving on.
Hmmm… should I tell you about Jake? We’ve been dating for a couple months (ish). He’s cute. He’s nice. Smart. Funny. Hilarious, actually. I really like him! But, we’ll stop there for now :)
Hey, thanks for reading this and not just skipping straight to the recipe. I can’t articulate how grateful I am for your time - the only way I can think of to do so is by continuing to do what I love, bring you delicious recipes, and keep thanking you!
Some notes about the recipe:
I ground some rolled oats I had in my pantry into flour using my Ninja blender. You can purchase oat flour in most grocery stores, but grinding at home works well, too, if you have a high-powered blender. I alternated between the blend and pulse settings for about 5-7 minutes to get a fine grind.
Maple syrup can be replaced by agave or honey - whatever you’ve got on hand.
The batter will seem pretty thin and runny before baking, but trust it. This means the muffins will be tender and light!
If you don’t have extra virgin olive oil on hand, you maybe be able to swap in melted and cooled coconut oil or softened butter. However, these fats are solid at room temperature, so the longer the muffins sit on the counter or in the fridge, the tougher their consistency will become. Extra virgin olive oil is liquid at room temperature, and therefore keeps the muffins soft and tender.
Makes 6 large muffins, 12 small muffins
1 small zucchini (about 1/2 cup before squeezing), gently squeezed of its liquid in a paper towel
2 pasture-raised eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, at room temperature
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
juice from 1/4 lemon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups oat flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips, plus a handful extra for topping
Preheat the oven to 400F and lightly grease a muffin tin with extra virgin olive oil. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl (I used my KitchenAid stand-mixer), whisk together the eggs, kefir, maple syrup (or agave or honey), and coconut oil until smooth. Add the vanilla extract and baking soda and whisk again to combine.
Combine the flour, spices, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl and stir until well incorporated. Slowly add this to the wet ingredients - use a rubber spatula to mix until no lumps of flour remain - don’t overmix!
Transfer the batter to the muffin tin. Fill each cup completely - this will help yield larger muffins! Top each muffin tin with extra dark chocolate. Bake at 400F for 8 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 350F and continue baking for another 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and cool in the muffin tin for 5 minutes, then carefully pull them out and cool on a baking rack for another 5 minutes.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for about a week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.