My mom has an amazing garden, and every summer, I am the happy recipient of her bounty. If I’m lucky, she shares her marionberries with me. (Mom, if you’re reading this, can you pick a pint for me?) A few weeks ago she gave me some zucchini. “I have too many,” she said.
My husband doesn’t really like zucchini, (“It’s green. I don’t like green things,” is his go-to phrase), so if I saute it, it’s me who eats it all. So while I graciously accepted her zucchinis, I was a little hesitant. What else can I make with this vegetable? After some thought, making a dessert came to mind. Maybe I can disguise the zucchini?
I had some cranberries that I thought would add a nice touch to a traditional zucchini muffin. While the zucchini gives moisture to the muffin, the cranberry adds tartness, which, surprisingly, creates a nice balance. I used both fresh and frozen cranberries, and they were perfect.
Once the muffins cooled slightly, I gave one to Eric, trying to hide the devilish look on my face. The I-have-a-little-secret-that-you-aren’t-privy-of look. He wolfed down the muffin. With a raised eyebrow, I said, “You know, they have zucchini in it. The green stuff you don’t like.” He shrugged his shoulders. “Well, I couldn’t taste it. Those were surprisingly good.”
So there you have it. The unofficial verdict. A new convert to zucchini? I won’t hold my breath with sauteing it, but I know at least I can make these and he’ll get a small dose of green vegetables in his diet. Make them today. And if you too have those in your family who don’t like zucchini, just keep it your little secret. :) Enjoy! xoxo
Cranberry Zucchini Muffins
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 12 standard muffins
1 ¾ c flour
½ t baking powder
½ t baking soda
½ t cinnamon
½ t salt
2 large eggs
1 c sugar
½ c vegetable oil
½ t vanilla extract
1 c grated zucchini*
¼ c frozen cranberries
¼ c dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a standard muffin tin with cupcake liners or spray with cooking spray. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the zucchini. Dump in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Fold in the wet ingredients until there are no traces of flour. Then fold in the cranberries. Be careful not to overmix.
Spoon out the dough evenly into the muffin cups. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until edges are browned and toothpick entered comes out clean. Transfer muffin tin to cooling rack and cool for 10 minutes before removing the muffins and cooling completely.
Store in an air-tight container for up to 4 days.
*Note: Do not squeeze the zucchini to get the moisture out. You need it in the muffins.
Recipe Source: slightly adapted from Martha Steward’s Baking Handbook