Guilt Free Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Recipe- Gluten Free, Vegan, Refined Sugar Free, Xanthan Gum Free

You know what I love? When I'm able to pass off nutritious and healthy food as candy or cake or other treats to my kids or others.
Take these chocolate zucchini muffins. I made them to serve my family for breakfast in place of cereal. I wanted them to be refined sugar free, filled with protein and whole grains, and vegetables. Oh, and I wanted them to be super awesome.
I based these off of this recipe, transforming it to make it gluten free, vegan, refined sugar free, etc... and the results were amazing.
My only regrets is that I need to order more coconut sugar from iherb before I can make these again...

I loved serving these for breakfast. My kids loved them and I had absolutely no guilt about serving them this "treat".

If you want to keep these gluten full, feel free to replace the first 6 ingredients with 2 cups of gluten flour. You can also use any other gluten free all purpose flour mix- you don't need to use these exact measurements like I did- just follow these rules if you want to mix up your own gluten free flour mix.

And of course, if you want to keep the costs down, you can replace the coconut sugar with white sugar.

This makes 24 muffins.

While my husband was very skeptical at first about zucchini with chocolate, in baked goods... these won him over and he approved.

Guilt Free Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Recipe- Gluten Free, Vegan, Refined Sugar Free, Xanthan Gum Free

1/3 cup chickpea flour
1/3 cups buckwheat flour
1/3 cup millet flour
2 tablespoons brown rice flour
1/2 cup short grain rice flour
1/2 cup potato starch (or 2 cups of wheat flour or other all purpose flour instead of this and all the previous flours listed)
1 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup ground flax seeds
3/4 cup boiling water
1 cup oil (use whatever you consider to be healthiest- I used coconut oil but any is fine)
1-2 cups coconut sugar (or sucanat, or white sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups shredded raw zucchini
1 cup chocolate chips (optional, and totally not necessarily)

1. Mix flax seeds with boiling water. Let sit for 10 minutes.

2. Combine the flours, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon together in a bowl; stir until well combined.

3. Whisk together the flax eggs, oil, and coconut sugar together until well combined.

4. Add the zucchini and mix.

5. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and mix until combined.

6. Add chocolate chips if desired.

7. Spoon evenly into 24 muffin tin molds.

8. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until a knife/toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

9. Let cool before eating.


P.S. These freeze very nicely, and taste delicious even frozen, straight out of the freezer.

P.P.S. These are relatively sweet, so if you want to experiment with cutting back on the coconut sugar, you can.

Do you have any "treats" that you serve your family that are actually very healthy? What are they? What makes them healthy?
Does this look like something you'd make for your family?

Linking up to Real Food Wednesday and Allergy Free Wednesday.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. Even though your recipe doesn't use refined sugar (and in my opinion sugar is sugar is sugar) there is still up to 2 cups of sugar in the recipe, plus the chocolate chips! I don't see how this can be called's cake with some shredded zucchini.

    1. Sugar is not sugar is not sugar. White sugar is complete garbage with no nutritional value, but coconut sugar is chock full of nutrition and has a lower glycemic index than white sugar. That said, its up to 2 cups of sugar, but 1 cup works... but it is also a very large recipe- 1-2 cups of sugar compared to 3 cups of zucchini and 3 cups of flour, its either 1:3 or 1:6 sugar to other ingredients, which is definitely not a high percentage. And, for the record, I don't make mine with chocolate chips, since they're unnecessary and increase the expense, I just included the option.

    2. But to each their own. I don't feel guilty about serving this. If you'd rather not, thats your prerogative; I was just sharing a recipe I and my family loved.

    3. I would make it as a treat, not as breakfast :)

      To each her own indeed.

    4. Anita, I wrote this post on "what do i mean by sugar free"-

  2. Mmmmm, chocolate and zucchini. This does sound good. Although, being tired today, I might just dip raw zucchini slices in melted chocolate. It's like apple, only more vegetablish.

    No, I'm not joking. It's been that kind of day.

    1. Hmmm zucchini dipped in chocolate... doesn't sound too bad!

  3. Bottom's a WHOLE, WHOLE lot healthier than a cake from the grocery!


  4. I made these yesterday for my daughter's first day of 8th grade and WOW. These are amazing! I used 2 cups of sweetener because we usually like things a bit on the sweet side, but I'll cut it down to 1 1/2 cups next time because it was super sweet. I feel completely comfortable and proud to serve these to my family and to see them gobble them up makes me very happy. Also, I used 4 eggs instead of the flax eggs (I know, not quite as healthy), I was out of flax seeds! Love the chocolate chips, but you are right, they are totally unnecessary (but tasty and indulgent and worth it). Thank you very much for the truly wonderful gluten free recipe, this has been added to the permanent will-make-again-and-again recipe box. There are still a few muffins on the counter and my family has already requested I make more. You are amazing Penny!

    1. I'm so glad you and your family liked it! What sweetener did you use? I used coconut sugar which is less sweet than white sugar... Dont feel bad about using eggs- i'm not anti eggs, they just make me sick... Thank you!

    2. Ah yes, I used whey low (it has the same sweetness as white sugar) so I'm sure that's why mine were pretty sweet! I will use coconut sugar next time and flax eggs too, to really healthy these up. Again, thanks for the great recipe, keep them coming (I know you will)!

  5. I would love to try, but are there "green pieces" visible? I'd assume so....Then I'm out of luck....

    1. I used zucchini that was light in color (our local variety) but you can't see it at all. I don't see why you should be able to see the green in the muffins, but if you're concerned, you can try peeling it.

  6. I am gonna try making these right now! So excited!

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