Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins

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It’s almost zucchini season! Are your plants producing yet? Mine aren’t, but then again, we didn’t plant this year. (HA!)

Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins are a perfect way to use zucchini. A moist chocolate muffin recipe is baked and then rolled in cinnamon sugar liked a baked donut hole!


Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins (2 of 4)w

I miss planting zucchini. For a few years we had zucchini coming out our ears in our garden. One year it started producing in early June and kept going through August. It got so bad my husband finally just ripped the plant out of the ground because we couldn’t eat any more zucchini.

Now I miss those days…I’m stuck with store bought zucchini and it’s just not the same.

The biggest problem with growing zucchini, and you zucchini growers will attest this is true, is that you check and pick the zucchini and then the next day find one you missed the size of a baseball bat. That happened to us that one year about 10 times – and I’m not exaggerating. I made pie bars and brownies and muffins and then I decided to make these chocolate muffins too…and then I gave up and hid the rest of the squash-bats around the house so I could whack intruders over the head with them.

These Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins were some of our favorites! They’re soft and chocolatey and full of zucchini, but you’d never know it. They’re baked, not fried, so they’re a better-for-you doughnut. Before serving you brush them with butter and roll them in cinnamon sugar and then you eat too many to count. Or maybe that’s just me?

chocolate donut muffins

It seems like everyone searches about healthy zucchini muffins and I can’t promise these are healthy, but they are better for you than regular doughnuts. They’re baked, not fried, but you don’t miss the fried once you taste one. Dipping the muffins in butter and rolling in cinnamon sugar give that crunch that is expected from a cinnamon sugar donut!

I guess maybe you can call them “a bit” healthier zucchini muffins with applesauce because I substituted apple sauce for some of the oil. That’s good right? But then I also added chocolate…and sugar…and butter. These are what muffins are SUPPOSED to taste like.

How do you make doughnut muffins?

It’s easy!

All you need to do is bake your muffins like normal. You can use a regular muffin pan or a mini muffin pan. Just don’t use liners when baking!

Once they come out of the oven and you can handle them, dip and roll them in butter and then roll them in cinnamon sugar to coat.

The chocolate pairs so well with the cinnamon sugar, and the zucchini makes these muffins stay moist! I absolutely love adding zucchini to pretty much everything (even cinnamon rolls!)

Use up your zucchini and make yourself BREAKFAST!

chocolate zucchini doughnut muffins

Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins are the perfect summer breakfast to use up that garden fresh zucchini!

Tips for making successful donut muffins:

  • Don’t roll them in butter and cinnamon sugar until ready to serve.
  • Do a double roll of cinnamon sugar to fully coat.
  • Store unrolled muffins in the freezer for up to a month.

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[mv_recipe post_id=”40584″]If you love zucchini recipes, be sure to check out Trish’s Lemon Zucchini Cake or Liz’s Zucchini Bread.

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Banana Bread

Zucchini Brownies

Zucchini brownies are a healthier recipe for brownies, and these are the BEST zucchini brownies ever! They're ooey, gooey, and SUPER fudgy brownies. And NO one will know they have zucchini inside!

Zucchini Cream Cheese Muffins

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chocolate zucchini doughnut muffins
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Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins

This is a perfect EASY muffin recipe that tastes like a baked donut! Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins are a great way to use up all that summer squash.
Author Dorothy Kern


  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar divided
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 7 tablespoons sour milk or 1 teaspoon vinegar plus enough milk to make 7 tablespoons, or you can use buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon divided
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 4 tablespoons butter melted


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray mini muffin pans with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Stir 3/4 cup sugar, oil, and apple sauce in a large bowl with a wooden spoon. Stir in eggs, sour milk, baking soda, cocoa, salt, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Stir in flour. Stir in zucchini.
  3. Spoon into mini muffin pans (makes 48) and bake for 10-12 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool at least 5 minutes in pan before removing.
  4. Right before serving: Stir remaining sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll muffins in melted butter than toss in cinnamon sugar.

Chocolate Zucchini Doughnut Muffins are a perfect way to use zucchini. A moist chocolate muffin recipe is baked and then rolled in cinnamon sugar liked a baked donut hole!

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  1. Wow what a great idea! I’ve made doughnut muffins but never with zucchini…might have to try that 🙂

  2. We didn’t grow any zucchini this year, but there are a ton of farmer’s markets around that have huge zucchini. I need to have some of these. They’d be so tasty with a cup of joe. 

  3. Those muffins look amazing!  And I’m kind of envying your zucchini growing ability.  I try to grow it every year and every year I get nothing.  Maybe one or two teeny tiny zucchini if I’m lucky but that’s it.  Seriously, who can’t grow zucchini?!  Oh well, I’ll buy some and make these!  Clicking over to check out the recipe!

  4. I love all the zucchini recipes this time of year. We are getting tons of zucchini in our CSA and I enjoy finding new ways to showcase them! These muffins look spectacular!

  5. I love doughnut muffins and I’ve never seen them with this flavor combo! Awesome 🙂

  6. I wish I had a garden. And that it was overflowing with zucchini. I think I’m the only person who has to buy it 🙂 I wish I lived closer to you! These look awesome and I love the combo of zuke/chocolate. I just made a cake this week with that combo!

  7. You are so creative!  I love these, and I haven’t even tried them yet!  3 cheers for that rich San Joaquin Valley soil! 

  8. Ooooh these look so good!  Unfortunately we didn’t plant a garden this year 🙁 just didn’t have the time.  But I have some neighbors that have been generous and gave us some of theirs!  Can’t wait to try these out!

  9. These look great. I guess you ate them all because I didn’t find any in your freezer last weekend. lol

  10. Oh, I’m missing my zucchini garden from last year. I remember finding those whoppers hiding under the leaves too. I didn’t think about using them to knock down potential intruders 🙂 Another beautiful recipe!

  11. Hey, I’m impressed that you have plants and grow stuff. Me = Plant Killer.
    These look like the way to do zucchini!

  12. Too funny. It’s true, though, you turn your back and they’ve grown ten fold.  

  13. We only grew basil and tomatoes this year… and now, I’m really wishing I had a zucchini plant because these sound AMAZING. Next year, hopefully, assuming I can figure the whole “growing veggies in my backyard without a toddler and dog trampling them” thing…

  14. We have tons of zucchini too! I think I’ve made too much zucchini bread, but these look fabulous!

  15. When you use shredded zucchini in recipes, do you squeeze out any of the moisture first or just put it directly in?

  16. We finally tried growing zucchini for the first time this year and love it. These doughnut muffins look like the perfect way to use some up 🙂 They look incredible!

  17. Do you have to squeeze the zucchini before adding it to the mixture?

  18. do you have to wait just before serving to do butter and roll them

  19. Oh baby, these sound delicious! Our garden is starting to burst with zucchini, so I’m definitely making these!

  20. ohh!! CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI DOUGHNUT MUFFINS ! I will apply it soon! I really like this flavor

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