These EASY and healthy olive oil zucchini muffins are one of my favorite recipes to make with an abundance of zucchini. With a tender crumb, and just the right sweetness, these muffins are a hit with kids and adults alike!
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Some years, I've grown so many zucchini, it was joked that I could build a house from them. They are almost always one of those vegetables that I'm begging the neighbors to take off my hands, and feeding to my chickens because I've run out of room to freeze all the zucchini in my garden.
This year, though. This was not that kind of year.
Mosaic virus got hold in my gardens this year, and even though I planted zucchini in three well-separated areas, all of my plants eventually succumbed. Zucchini are precious this year, and their scarcity has given me a whole new appreciation for them.
Each time I make a batch of zucchini bread or muffins, I feel a little extra bit of gratitude for the squash I did get to harvest, and the recipes I can make. And gratitude is a lovely thing to sit down with, at breakfast time.
This particular recipe is one of my very favorites. More importantly, it's a "very, very favorite" with my kids. The soft and mellow crumb is everything a muffin should be, and it owes every bit of that smooth, rich texture to the olive oil.
The edges get perfectly crusty, in a delicate sort of way. And the flavor of the zucchini actually gets to shine through, because this recipe isn't weighed down with loads of sugar. They're still a sweet muffin - sweet enough to feel special to kids as well as adults. But just sweet enough.
Much the same as with a loaf of zucchini bread, I've found that these muffins actually get better with time. If you can bear to hide some of them away, they're even better the day after they're made. We usually have to make a double batch to pull that off.
Tips for making the best zucchini muffins
Measure your flour carefully.
Most failures in the texture of a muffin come from inaccurate flour measurement. To get a perfect measure, fluff up your flour, spoon it into the measuring cup, and then level it off with a knife.
Don't skimp on the oil
The olive oil really is the secret to perfectly moist muffins, with a picture-perfect crumb. Cutting back on the oil will make for a drier muffin.
Don't squeeze out your shredded zucchini
Some recipes are written with the expectation that you'll squeeze your shredded zucchini nearly dry, before adding it to the other ingredients. This recipe is written expecting that you won't. Don't waste that flavorful, healthful zucchini juice by dumping in out. It's part of this recipe. Just shred your zucchini, and dump it in the way it is.
Can you store these zucchini muffins?
You bet! If you make enough to let them hang around, these muffins store very well.
On the counter: These muffins last well at (moderate) room temperature for up to two days.
In the fridge: Store these muffins in the fridge for up to a week.
In the freezer: These muffins also freeze nicely. Wrap them well to prevent ice crystals forming, and freeze for up to a month. (They might do fine with a longer freeze, but this is the longest I've tried it.) Thaw overnight in the fridge, or at room temperature.
We may not have enough zucchini to keep making these muffins well into the winter months like usual, but you can bet that we are enjoying them while we can. I hope you do too!
Olive Oil Zucchini Muffins
- stand mixer or mixing bowl
- muffin tin
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cup shredded zucchini
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 cups einkorn flour, or all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- Prehead oven to 325° F. Thoroughly grease muffin tin. (This recipe makes 12 standard sized muffins, or 6 jumbo muffins)
- Dump ALL ingredients into a stand mixer, in the order listed. Mix on low speed until throroughly mixed. To mix by hand: Add wet ingredients to a large mixing bowl, and beat well. Add dry ingredients to a small mixing bowl, and stir until well blended. Add dry mixture to wet mixture, and stir until well mixed.
- Spoon batter into muffin tins.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until centers are just set and edges are becoming golden brown. (30-35 minutes for jumbo sized muffins)
- Let cool slightly, and serve.