These bran zucchini muffins are moist, fluffy, and flavorful. Taking the classic bran muffins and making a twist with zucchini. These muffins create a perfect balance of sweet and flavorful yet increasing good nutrition.
Reason to Love This Recipe
- Flavor + Texture: Classic bran muffins can often be dry but mixed with zucchini these have the perfect balance of moistness, tenderness, and just the right amount of crumble. If you love zucchini bread you are gonna love these zucchini bran muffins!
- Meets Dietary Needs: There is no dairy in these zucchini bran muffins, they have a smaller amount of added sugar (brown sugar and molasses), and they can be made vegan with flax eggs.
- Uses Seasonal Zucchini: Have fresh zucchini or as some call courgette, in your garden? Or perhaps from the overflowing from the farmers market stand? You don't want to miss this recipe this zucchini season. Also, try another summer fave with zucchini hidden in it: make this purple blackberry smoothie recipe!
- A Perfect Snack: If you are like me and have little kids in the household, muffins are on repeat! My other go-to recipes are orange muffins or banana muffins.
Ingredients for Healthy Bran Zucchini Muffins
Check out the ingredients needed for these yummy muffins below. Like always I try to use ingredients that are in your kitchen already or that are easy to get! The full quantities are in the recipe card below.
- Bran: You can use wheat bran , oat bran, bran flakes, raisin bran, or all-bran cereal for these muffins. However, after testing this recipe, I found it works best to let the crunchy cereals (bran flake, all bran, or raisin bran) sit for 1 hour until everything is soft and mixes well.
- Zucchini: The star of these muffins is the zucchini! It will need to be grated. If you are making a big batch or don't want to grate it by hand, put it through a food processor! You need about 2 small zucchini or 1 ½ medium zucchini. Squeezing out extra moisture after it is grated is key for this recipe, so they aren't too wet.
- Molasses: This is used as a sweetener, it also brings out the classic bran taste all the while being super nutrient dense. Molasses is high in minerals, specifically iron.
- Eggs: These are needed for muffins to rise well and create a great muffin crumb.
- Brown Sugar or Coconut Sugar: Either works to sweeten these muffins!
- Oil: You can use, canola oil, olive oil, coconut oil, or olive oil.
- Milk: Any milk works for this recipe. I use almond milk.
- Vinegar: White vinegar or apple cider vinegar works. This reacts with the baking powder to create a good rise in the muffins.
- Flour: For this recipe, I have tried organic white flour and organic whole wheat flour.
- Baking Soda and Baking Powder: These baking agents are needed to rise the muffin making it fluffy and light.
- Sea Salt: I pretty much only bake with pure fine sea salt because there's no extra processing, it's just dried and it's high in minerals. You can also use the same amount of regular salt if you don't have sea salt.
- Optional Pumpkin Seeds: These chopped seeds give to make the muffins so pretty and often have an extra crunch. They support the body by being a good source of protein and zinc.
What is Bran? + Nutrition of Bran
Bran is the outer layer on many grains (wheat, oats, barley, corn, rice). It is often removed when processing is happening. This extends shelf life of the flour but it also removes much of the good nutrition of the grain!
Bran is known for it's high fiber content which supports good digestion and elimination. Including bran in your diet supports the cardiovascular system, keeps you full longer, and slows the absorption of sugar supporting blood sugar levels. It is also high in B vitamins, magnesium, zinc and iron.
Zucchini: Why We Love It + Nutrition
The summer squash zucchini, aka courgette, is so versatile it can be included in many recipes anddd it's so easy to grow!! It's low in carbohydrates, high in nutrition, and easy to add grated into many meals. I even have a fruity smoothie recipe that has zucchini in it! For these bran muffins zucchini brings a moist tender crumb.
Zucchini is an antioxidant. Antioxidants combat the exposure to free radicals, that we encounter in the environment, products, and some foods even daily. It is a good source of vitamins C, A, and potassium.
How to Make the Best Zucchini Bran Muffins
These muffins are simple to make! Follow the step by step photos to see how I make these bran zucchini muffins.
Start by grating the zucchini with a box grater or a food processor until you get 2 cups. (No need to peel the zucchini unless it is well bruised.)
By placing it between paper towels or a clean tea towel, squeeze the zucchini to remove moisture. Set aside.
Mix together the other wet ingredients: eggs, brown sugar (or coconut sugar), molasses, oil, milk, vinegar, and bran. Let it sit for 10 minutes. If you are using any kind of bran cereal let it sit for at least 1 hour until it is soggy.
In a small bowl place the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt, and whisk together well. Using a whisk ensures everything is incorporated well and there are no spots of baking soda or salt!
Add the flour mixture and the grated zucchini to the bran mixture, and stir only until mixed (over-mixing stops the muffins from rising). In a greased muffin tray or a muffin tray with liners, place ⅓ cup of muffin batter into each muffin cup (they will be full). Sprinkle chopped pumpkin seeds on top if using!
Baking: In a preheated oven bake the muffins at 425 F for 7 minutes, then turn down the temperature to 375 F and bake for another 12-15 minutes until they are fully cooked. Remove the muffins from the oven, let them sit in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove the muffins to fully cool on a cooling rack.
- Soak the Bran: If you are using bran flakes, all bran, or raisin bran make sure to mix it with the wet ingredients and let it sit at least 1 hour to become soggy for the best texture.
- Grate the Zucchini: To make sure the zucchini is evenly distributed in the muffins grate it with a cheese grater or a food processor. Peeling the zucchini is unnecessary.
- Squeeze the Zucchini: Zucchinis contain a lot of water! The first time I tested these muffins they were too moist. Make sure to squeeze the grated zucchini between paper towels or a clean tea towel.
- Baking temperature: Preheat the oven to 425 F, and bake for 7 minutes to create the best rise. Turn the oven down to 375 F to continue baking and cook fully for 12-15 minutes. Keeping the oven hot would dry out the muffins so this is the best temperature to bake muffins at.
Here are a few ways you can change and adapt this recipe to increase nutrition and flavor!
- Cinnamon: Add 1 ½ teaspoon of cinnamon to the flour mixture before adding the flour mix to the wet ingredients.
- Chocolate Chips: Love the zucchini chocolate chip combo? Add ½ cup of chocolate chips or mini chocolate chips to this recipe before baking.
- Raisins: Add ½ cup of raisins to the muffins for more sweetness and a juicy bite. If your raisins are hard, soak them in hot water for 15 minutes before adding them.
- Apple Pieces: For a fall combo make these bran apple flavor! Add 1 finely chopped apple to these zucchini bran muffins.
- Toddler Friendly (Mini): Bake these muffins in a mini muffin tray to make every toddler squeal! Bake mini muffins at 350 degrees F for about 11 minutes.
Muffins can be healthy depending on the ingredients! Store-bought muffins often have fillers and sugars added to make them last longer, this isn't benefiting your body. Homemade muffins are the best way to enjoy muffins. For healthy muffins, you can reduce the sugar, and add good fibers (flour, bran, oats, fruit) and whole grains.
These zucchini bran muffins are healthy. They are a good source of fiber, the bran and zucchini add extra nutrition, giving another serving of vegetables you don't even realize is there. They are low in sugar and a great healthy snack!
They will last 10 days. Store the muffins in a bag or container at room temperature for 3 days. After that keep them in the fridge for up to a week. These muffins can also be frozen and enjoyed within 6 months.
Yes! Zucchini bran muffins can be frozen. To prevent them from sticking together place them on a lined cookie sheet, freeze them until solid (a few hours), then place them in a bag or container and back into the freezer. The pre-freeze keeps them from sticking together.
Yes, you can use either wheat bran, oat bran, or any bran cereal in bran muffins. If you are using bran cereal or bran flakes it is harder, from my testing the best results are if you soak this with the wet ingredients for 1 hour so it becomes soggy and mixes well.
More Baked Snacks
Keen to bake some more healthy snacks? Try these:
Love this recipe for zucchini bran muffins? Let me know down below the recipe in the comments section! And give this recipe a star rating. I love hearing what you think!
Zucchini Bran Muffins
- 1 muffin tray
- 2 cups zucchini
- 2 eggs
- ⅓ cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
- 3 tablespoon molasses
- ¼ cup oil olive oil, coconut oil, grapeseed oil, canola oil
- 1 cup milk any kind works
- 1 tablespoon vinegar apple cider vinegar or white
- 1 ½ cup bran (wheat bran, oat bran, all bran, raisin bran,. bran flakes)
- 1 cup flour white or whole wheat
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon sea salt or regular salt
- 3 tablespoon pumpkin seeds chopped for on top
- Start by grating the zucchini with a box grater or a food processor until you get 2 cups. Squeeze the zucchini to remove moisture, by placing it between paper towels or a clean tea towel. Set aside.
- Mix together the other wet ingredients: eggs, brown sugar (or coconut sugar), molasses, oil, milk, vinegar, and bran. Let it sit for 10 minutes. If you are using any kind of bran cereal let it sit for at least 1 hour until it is soggy.
- In a small bowl place the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and sea salt, and stir well.
- Add the flour mixture and the grated zucchini to the bran mixture, and stir only until mixed. In a greased muffin tray or a muffin tray with liners, place ⅓ cup of muffin batter into each muffin cup (they will be full). Sprinkle chopped pumpkin seeds on top if using!
- In a preheated oven bake the muffins at 425 F for 7 minutes, then turn down the temperature to 375 F and bake for another 12-15 minutes until they are fully cooked.
- Remove the muffins from the oven, let them sit in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove the muffins to fully cool on a cooling rack.
- Cinnamon: add 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon to the flour mix
- Chocolate Chips: Add ½ cup of chocolate chips or mini chocolate chips to this recipe before baking.
- Apple pieces: Add 1 finely chopped apple when mixing everything together.
- Mini Muffins: Bake these muffins in a mini muffin tray. Bake mini muffins at 350 degrees F for about 11 minutes.
- Raisins: Add ½ cup raisins. If your raisins are hard, soak them in hot water for 15 minutes. Or if using raisin bran just include those raisins!
- Vegan: Make it with flax eggs instead of eggs! 2 tablespoon ground flax seeds, 6 tablespoon of water, let it sit for 10 minutes.