YAY! This is my first post for Blake Bakes! I’ve been wanting to be part of BB for quite some time now. You see, all my baking peeps are here and I felt quite left out! So, what do I make for my debut, my grand entrance, my BIG first impression? Something with zucchini! I can see that look on your face. You’re hiding behind your computer screen saying, “WHAT? Not another zucchini recipe! What the heck is she thinking?”
There’s a method behind the madness…I think…Yes, I’m sure of it! I used to grow tons of zucchini when we lived in a square house and had a square garden. I made loads of zucchini bread, muffins and cupcakes for the bakery we owned. My customers waited all year for the zucchini harvest to arrive. OK, so I’m exaggerating a little. They probably never gave it a second thought, that is until I lined them all up on the counters to cool in front of an open window.
The smells of cinnamon, brown sugar and chocolate chips all mingled together made everyone’s mouths water. I added some cream cheese frosting to the top and it was party time! Back then, it was hard to keep the kid’s fingers out of the frosting. Cupcakes would mysteriously disappear. Many years later, I still have trouble, this time keeping my husband’s fingers out of the frosting!
Things have changed since then as I no longer live on land. Baking is a little more complicated now. My oven is always moving and taking photographs of my successes and flops is a challenge to say the least. I now live, bake, cook and blog about it all on a sailboat! I can only fit 12 cupcakes in my Easy-Bake-Oven at a time, so everything I make takes twice as long. I’ve heard some people say, “I can’t bake, my kitchen is too small, and I don’t have a KitchenAid mixer.” Well, I’m here to say, “Yes, you can. If I can do it in a space smaller than your bathroom, you can too!”
Anyway…to get back to zucchini! These Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cupcakes have been a family favorite for evah! Our kids loved chocolate chips in almost everything and it just seemed natural to throw a handful or two into these cupcakes! But they were still missing something. Cream Cheese Frosting with a touch of cinnamon did the trick! Then I went overboard (pun intended) with other ingredients. Coconut, walnuts and raisins were common add-ins. Sprinkles, non-pariels and dragees showed up on top of the mile-high frosting. Then lightening struck my brain! I was low on shortening, but I did have some marshmallow fluff! It took me (hhmm) years to discover the secret ingredient? Not telling, but it really does make an awesome frosting!
Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
(an original recipe by Donna Diegel @ Spatulas & Corkscrews)
For the cupcakes:
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 3/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
- 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups peeled and grated zucchini
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips or chopped chocolate chunks, semi sweet or milk chocolate
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut, optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- This recipe makes 24 regular size cupcakes, so line muffin pans with paper or silicone liners and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine flours, salt, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In another large mixing bowl with a hand-held or stand mixer, beat eggs and sugars together. Add oil, vanilla and zucchini and blend well. Scrape bowl.
- With mixer on low speed, add 1/2 the flour mixture and mix. Scrape down bowl and add the remaining flour. Beat on low just until blended and the dry ingredients are incorporated into the wet ingredients.
- Fold in chocolate chips and coconut if desired.
- Fill prepared muffin cups 3/4 full with batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-22 minutes, turning once half way through baking, until pick comes out clean.
- Let sit on cooling racks for 5 minutes before removing cupcakes from pans.
- Cool completely before frosting.
- At this point, the cupcakes can be wrapped in Ziploc Bags and frozen for up to 2 months.
- Makes 24 regular size cupcakes.
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1/4 cup Crisco shortening
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) softened butter
- 4 ounces softened cream cheese
- 1/4 cup marshmallow fluff
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 pound (3 1/2 cups) 10X confectioners’ sugar
- 1 Tablespoon water, more or less
You can skip the shortening and increase the butter to 1/2 cup (whole stick) if you’d like.
With electric mixer, beat shortening, butter, cream cheese and marshmallow fluff together in a large bowl until creamy. Scrape bowl.
Add vanilla and cinnamon and beat again. Scrape bowl.
On low speed, beat in half the confectioners’ sugar. Scrape and beat in the remaining 10X sugar, adding water as needed until frosting is nice and fluffy.
Decorate cupcakes any way you like!
Cover and refrigerate any leftovers if there are any!