Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

The secret to any zucchini or carrot-based dessert or bread is simple:  add double the amount of veggie the recipe calls for.  This has never failed me and always results in an uber-moist, melt in your mouth texture.

I found this recipe in the September issue of Gourmet magazine and, after adapting it to suit my tastes, i’ve made these cupcakes twice (and it’s not even September yet).  A great way to turn zucchini haters into zucchini lovers, these cupcakes can be adjusted in many ways.  Amp up the cocoa powder and remove the chocolate chips to make super dark, fudgy cakes, remove the chocolate completely for straight-up zucchini cupcakes, or turn them vegan by using egg substitute and vegan chocolate chips.

Ingredients:

Makes 12 cupcakes.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup vegetable oil or Crisco

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 to 2 cups zucchini ( 1 if you want to follow the recipe exactly, 2 if you want to do it my way ), grated.

6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips ( I usually add the whole bag…)

Muffin/cupcake pan(s) with 12 (1/2-cup) cups with paper liners.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Whisk together flour, cocoa, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a small bowl.  Using an electric mixer, beat together sugar, oil (or Crisco), egg and vanilla in a large bowl until well blended, about 2 minutes.  Mix in flour mixture until just incorporated.  Using a large spoon, stir in zucchini, then chocolate chips.

Divide evenly between lined muffin cups.  I fill my cups almost to the top because these cupcakes don’t rise much.  Bake for 30-40 minutes until tops spring back when lightly pressed.  Cool and enjoy!

Note:  I usually double the recipe and I recommend you do to, as these cupcakes seem to disappear in seconds.

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