Double Down Chocolate Power Muffins

I may have mentioned a time or two (or ten) that some of my favorite recipes are my muffin recipes.   They are probably my most personal recipes, as they are the ones I have developed for my daughters – working hard to pack them full of healthy ingredients while making them delicious enough that my extremely picky eaters will be happy to eat them.   My eight year old loves the banana chocolate chip muffins and my toddler loves the pumpkin muffins.

The one muffin I have not been able to perfect a healthy version of is a chocolate muffin.   I decided to ask fellow food blogger extraordinaire and holistic nutritionist Leanne Vogel if she could help me out.  Leanne is passionate about creating healthy and delicious recipes that are packed full of nutritious ingredients which she shares on her website, Healthful Pursuit.    I was super excited when she agreed to help me out and created an amazing chocolate muffin recipe to share with me and my readers.    I will let Leanne take it from here…

Hi everyone! My name is Leanne and I am beyond excited to be here with you today.

When Christi asked me to help her come up with a kid-friendly healthy chocolate muffin recipe I was honored… and a bit nervous!

As you know, Christi’s talent far exceeds her impeccable sweet tooth. Her photographs are stunning, her personality colorful, and her eye for detail and creativity is just unreal.

I started filling my life with meals to support my health right around the time I’d entered school to become a holistic nutritionist. I quickly learned that what we eat can significantly affect our mental, emotion, physical, and spiritual well being. 3 years after graduation and hundreds of kitchen creations later, I began Healthful Pursuit. My goal was simple, to connect and learn from people, share my story, insight, and possibly inspire those looking to make healthful changes in their lives.

My goal with each recipe I create; and something I strive for when meeting with my clients online, is to use easy-to-find ingredients that wont cost an arm and a leg. I dislike going to specialty shops, paying more than $3 dollars for flour, and having to go to 4 grocery stores a week just to get everything I need.

I’m a big fan of Superstore, bulk bin stores (like bulk barn), and using simple ingredients like honey, cocoa powder, grapeseed oil, apple sauce, medjool dates, and fruits n’ veggies to flavor my meals.

My personal road to health has taught me about the importance of high quality ingredients, how to listen to our bodies to optimize our health, and best of all, how to have fun in the kitchen. It’s blogs like Christi’s that inspire me to re-jive a recipe so that those that have issues with dairy, gluten, or sugars, don’t feel like they’re missing out on all the muffin fun.

Double Down Chocolate Power Muffins – Makes 12 medium-sized muffins.

Preheat oven to 375 Degrees

  • 1/4 cup cocoa or cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup unpasteurized honey
  • 1/4 cup grape seed or melted coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp apple butter, or additional honey, or nut butter
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded zucchini
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips, cacao nibs, or carob chips
  1. Combine cocoa powder, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, mix eggs, honey, oil, apple butter, and vanilla until incorporated.
  3. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and mix with a wooden spoon or spatula until just mixed.
  4. Before you add the zucchini, be sure to squeeze out additional moisture. This can be done by placing the zucchini in your hand and squeezing it, or wrapping it in a kitchen towel and ringing the zucchini out.
  5. Then, add zucchini and chocolate chips to the mix and stir until each piece of batter has a chocolate chip in it!
  6. Place 10 medium muffin liners in a muffin pan and spoon the mixture into each tin so they’re about 2/3 to 3/4 of the way full.
  7. Bake on the middle rack for 23-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely (about 1 hour) before serving.

The ingredients:

If you don’t want to add the zucchini, no problem. Just add an additional 2 tbsp of apple butter.

Don’t have apple butter? You can try using nut butter in it’s place like salt-free almond or peanut butter. Or replace it with additional honey for a sweeter muffin.

Coconut flour is now being sold at many major grocery stores. It can be found (in Canada) at any Superstore that have a natural foods section. And can also be found online, at TJs, and Whole Foods.

These muffins are a great addition to any weekday lunch and make a great take-along snack for an afternoon play date.

They’re just 110 calories, with under 7 grams of fat, over 2 grams of protein, and (get this) 8 grams of sugar! I highly suggest making a double batch – one batch for the kids’ lunches and one batch for you.

Seems fair, right?

Along with hiding zucchini in healthy muffins, I get a kick out of sliding avocado in breakfast bakes like I did with this Double Chocolate Crunch quinoa flake bake. These cakes are quick to put together, sugar-free, filling, and delicious.

Another kid-friendly, highly nutrient dense and low-sugar snack that we make again and again are these 100 Calorie Beary Simple Cookies. They’re fantastic dipped in yogurt, eaten plain, or with a little nut butter on top.

One of my latest recipes; and the favorite on the blog right now, is this Sweet Almond Spread. It’s a fantastic alternative to hummus or other vegetable dips. It’s sweet, earthly and filled with healthy fats!

Although sweet treats are my favorite, I promise you I make tons of balanced recipes too. After all, healthful living is all about balance! So, this post wouldn’t be complete without sharing my 15 minute salmon cakes with you. They’re easy, delicious, and come with a quick tartar sauce recipe to boot.

Thanks, Christi for challenging me to come up with a chocolate muffin recipe that has quickly become a favorite snack for the kids on my block. Not having kids of my own, I’m always having to reach out to the neighbors for official taste testers! I’m sure they don’t mind in the slightest :)

Have a fabulous day, all, and please feel free to visit by my blog, Healthful Pursuit, to say hi, or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, or StumbleUpon.


  1. says

    Lots of tasty links here! Creating healthy food without sacrificing taste is a challenge. Those power muffins look incredibly rich and the low fat ingredients is a nice surprise. Great post!

  2. Sarah Carere says

    These look so good, and your photography is stunning!

    Where is the best place in Toronto to get Coconut Flour. Do they sell it at bulk barn?

  3. says

    Healthy chocolate muffins, you say? Sounds absolutely fantastic! I’ve often thought about really trying to make all the meals in my life healthier as well as tasty, but it often gets met with serious resistance in this house. Maybe I can sneak these muffins in as a test…thanks for sharing!

  4. says

    Stopping in from SITS. Happy SITS day. I love the idea of making a healthier recipe and I love anything chocolate…and…oh sooo sweet! I have to agree that you have a wonderful eye for detail!

  5. says

    Happy SITS day! I just love your blog name, because when we bake for our family, it truly is an act of love.

    My children love muffins, but I’m still a little dubious that I could get them to eat muffins with bananas or pumpkin in them.

    • says

      Katherine – I did not tell my VERY picky daughter that the banana chocolate chip muffins had bananas in them, and that’s how they went over well. She knows now, but probably would not have tried them if she knew before hand. :) She’s not an easy one to fool, and she closely inspects ALL her food, so if it worked with her, you might have some luck. And the addition of chocolate chips helped a lot.

  6. says

    You two are awesome! Now I have found 2 new great looking sites. Christi, I am so in love with all of the colors and great photography on your site, and I feel a big muffin-baking party coming on this weekend.

  7. says

    How have I never stumbled across you before?! Oh my garsh! I love your recipes and detailed instructions with photos! I would love to make these muffins…but I don’t even have 1/3 of the ingredients listed… bummer!

    Happy SITS Day!

  8. says

    Congratulations on your SITS day. Sorry I’m late. I hope it was a fun day for you.

    You have so many yummy looking things here. I think I’ve gained weight just reading.

  9. says

    OMG! Let me just say that I typically don’t want anyone messing with my chocolate. Don’t make it healthy, just leave it be in it’s pure, heavenly delicious form. Despite the recipe not even looking all that appealing to me something told me to try it. I just did. I just ate 5 muffins. They are AWESOME!!! Double thumbs up and a big WOO HOO to Leanne!! The flavor doesn’t even hint at being healthy. A big thank you to Christi for sharing this recipe with us!

  10. Nickie says

    I made these exactly to recipe, other than substituting the apple butter for peanut butter & adding a small amount of coconut milk & they were absolutely fantastic! My five year old said they tasted better than the junky one’s from the supermarket bakery that she adores! The only thing is I got five medium/large muffins instead of the twelve stated & it took me over an hour to cook them (I did use a water bath for the majority of baking though as if I don’t, all my stuff burns on the bottom). I think I will substitute cocoa for the cacao & macadamia oil for the coconut oil next time to reduce the cost a bit, but man, 1/4 cup of flour in the whole recipe? It’s amazing! Great job Leanne.. keep up the amazing work. Your recipes are awesome.. :)

  11. susanne says

    Any suggestions for someone with egg allergies? My duaghter can’t eat eggs, wheat, or dairy, so these muffins look perfect… except for the eggs! Any ideas would be appreciated, she is newly diagnosed so I’m struggling for food ideas…

    • says

      Susanne, unfortunately I don’t have any advice. The allergies in my family and friends are nuts, dairy and wheat, so that’s pretty much as far as my allergy substitute info goes. I’m guessing that Vegan pages might have some great advice.

  12. susanne says

    Thanks, Christi. I am going to see what I can come up with- if I get something that works with the muffin recipe I will post it.

  13. susanne says

    Okay, I just made the muffins and they were great! Instead of eggs I used 3 tablespons of flaxseed and 9 tablespoons of water. Held together pretty well, a little more delicate than baked goods with eggs but didn’t fall apart. Also used carrots shredded with a microplane b/c i had no zucchini. And the taste was fabulous- thanks for the recipe!

  14. says

    OH MY! I had three eggs and some coconut flour and I knew I had to make these. I used chocolate protein powder instead of the cocoa powder and subbed in some peanut butter hummus I’d made that was going off for the oil. I then made it in a smaller loaf pan to serve four. SO delicious- and so much protein! I couldn’t have asked for a better result when trying coconut flour in baking for the first time 😀

  15. Jill says

    These were fantastic! I inherited a TON of zucchini and was trying to use it in whatever way I could before it went bad, and this recipe sure helped! Instead of honey I used 1/4 cup of strong coffee with 20 drops of vanilla stevia (so I also skipped the vanilla extract). I opted for almond butter in place of apple butter because it was what I had on hand. These were a little more cake-y than muffin-y, perhaps because of my substitutions, or perhaps because of my lack of adjustments for altitude (just moved, totally forgot about that!).

    Regardless, no complaints here. Thanks for sharing a wonderful recipe. I’ll be sure to make more with the rest of the zucchini I have!

  16. Penny says

    I ended up with 8, using a 1/4 cup measure to scoop the batter into the cups. I had to use applesauce in place of the apple butter (I’m excited to try them with nut butter!), date syrup as sweetener, and 1/8 of a cup of Manitoba Harvest dark chocolate protein powder in place of half of the cocoa because I ran out.

    They are delicious! Thank you!

  17. nofluttergirl says

    Great recipe! I didn’t have honey on hand so I used 1/4C unsweetened almond milk mixed with 1TB Truvia (erithritol mixed with stevia) and instead of apple butter I used 2 oz unsweetened bakers chocolate and 1tsp melted coconut oil. Also added maybe 1/2 tsp stevia drops. Turned out great!

    • nofluttergirl says

      Oh and I also only had 1 egg in the fridge so I used 2 TB ground chia seed mixed with 2 1/4 C almond milk to compensate for the missing 2 eggs.


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