Savory zucchini muffins are an easy side dish to add to your next soup or pasta dinner. They're filled with savory flavors like garlic, parmesan, and chives, and make the perfect vehicle for extra butter.
Make a batch of savory zucchini muffins to add to your next summer meal. Packed with fresh shredded zucchini, flavorful herbs, and a bit of parmesan cheese, these savory muffins are a side dish the whole family will love.
Zucchini muffins are an excellent summer baking recipe - all you need are a few bowls, a spoon, a muffin pan, and liners to get started. Plus, they're made with simple baking ingredients you may already have on hand.
Serve savory zucchini muffins with lunch or dinner alongside a soup and salad for a light meal. They pair well with dishes like tomato soup or pesto pasta.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Zucchini - You'll need 220 grams or 1.5 cups of finely grated zucchini (or about 1 to 1.5 medium zucchini). After measuring, you'll need to squeeze the excess liquid from the zucchini so that we don't add too much moisture to the recipe. Too much moisture = soggy and dense muffins.
- All-purpose flour - I've only tested this recipe with all-purpose (plain) flour, so I can't say for sure how other flours will turn out. If you have a different type of flour on hand, I recommend searching for a recipe that is developed with that specific flour in mind.
- Buttermilk - This recipe is written to work perfectly with buttermilk and the listed leavening, so regular milk (or other non-dairy milks) won't work as substitutes. If you don't have buttermilk on hand, add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar to a measuring cup, then fill to the 1-cup line with whole milk. Allow it to set for 5 minutes and you'll have a buttermilk substitute that works in this recipe.
- Eggs - Add structure and moisture to the zucchini muffins.
- Unsalted butter - Unsalted butter and ⅛ teaspoon of the listed salt can be substituted with salted butter if desired.
- Chives - Add flavor to your muffins. Can be omitted if desired.
- Leavening - You'll need both baking powder and baking soda for the proper lift in this recipe.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of the muffins. I do not recommend omitting the salt - muffins will taste bland in comparison.
- Garlic powder - Adds garlicky flavor to your muffins. Can be omitted if desired.
- Parmesan cheese - Adds savory flavor. If desired, it can be substituted with other cheeses like cheddar or gruyere. I recommend using cheese freshly shredded from a block rather than pre-shredded cheeses in a canister or bag. Pre-shredded cheeses are often coated in anti-clumping powders that can add a grainy texture when melted.
Frequently asked questions
- Do I need to squeeze the liquid from my zucchini? Yes, for this recipe you'll need to squeeze the excess liquid from the shredded zucchini before adding it to the batter. Too much liquid will make muffins soggy, gummy, and dense.
- Do I need to peel my zucchini? No, there's no need to peel zucchini for zucchini muffins. The skin and flesh melt seamlessly into the muffins as they bake.
- Do I need to remove the seeds from my zucchini before making muffins? If you're using a large zucchini with mature, hard seeds inside, use a spoon to scoop out the seeds before grating.
- Can I use cucumber instead of zucchini? No, zucchini has a mild flavor that makes it ideal for baking. Cucumber has a fresh "melon" flavor that's much more pronounced and not ideal for hiding in baked goods. For more information: Zucchini vs Cucumber - What's the Difference?
- How do I grate zucchini for baking? I recommend shredding zucchini using the small or "fine" side of a box grater. The smaller pieces melt right into muffins as they bake. A larger grate also works but adds a more noticeable texture. Here's the box grater I use: Amazon: OXO Good Grips Box Grater
- What size pan do I need? This recipe makes about 13 standard size muffins. This is the muffin pan I use for all my muffins and cupcakes: Wilton 24 cup standard size muffin pan
For detailed information on storing zucchini bread and muffins, check out my full post: How to store zucchini bread
Room temperature - Zucchini muffins can be stored in a tightly sealed container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Refrigerator - If your muffins are extremely moist/wet, you may want to store them in the refrigerator instead. Zucchini muffins will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week in a tightly sealed container.
Zucchini muffins can be carefully wrapped in plastic wrap/foil, then stored in a freezer safe bag or container in the freezer for up to 6 months. Set out on the counter top for 1 to 3 hours to thaw to room temperature.
Savory Zucchini Muffins
- 1.5 cups (220 g) finely grated zucchini, after measuring, squeeze liquid out
- 1 cup (227 g) buttermilk
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup (56 g) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 ¼ cups (270 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (56 g) freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped chives
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a muffin pan with 13 paper liners and set aside.
- In a bowl, add finely grated zucchini (after liquid has been squeezed out), buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter. Whisk until evenly incorporated. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, garlic powder, and salt. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add wet ingredients. Stir until incorporated. Add cheese and chives and stir just until incorporated. Batter will be thick.
- Divide batter between 13 lined muffin cups and bake for about 17-19 minutes, OR until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean or with crumbs (baking times will vary based on your oven and type of pan used).
- Allow muffins to cool completely on the counter before unwrapping and enjoying. Hot muffins will stick to the liners.
- Leftover zucchini muffins will keep in a tightly sealed container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. If your muffins are very moist/wet, I recommend refrigerating.
- Muffins can be frozen for up to 6 months. Tightly wrap in plastic wrap/foil and store in a freezer safe bag or container. Thaw on the counter top for 1 hour or more.