This mini zucchini bread packs a flavorful punch. Cinnamon and vanilla blend with the spelt’s earthiness, and chocolate chips give it the final sweet touch.
You know that feeling, when an idea pops into your head and refuses to leave? It can be pretty annoying, but it resulted in this zucchini bread, so…. it can’t be all that bad. Because, well, now my apartment is full of the scent of zucchini bread with melty chocolate chips in an adorable mini loaf pan. All of those are good things in my book.
Even though I’m not much of a dessert person, I’m always drawn to baking. The organized nerd in me loves the exact measurements and the scientific explanations of chemical reactions taking place in each recipe, while the rest of me scoffs at what are surely mere suggestions and simply dumps ingredients into a bowl until a batter forms. Trying to balance on the tightrope between rigid instruction and creative expression is what makes me happiest. Okay, fine, it’s a close second to when my experiments working out well, but that’s a given.
This is one experiment that, in my humble opinion, more than worked out well. Way more.
The size alone is enough to get people’s attention. You may be thinking that dessert is not a case of ‘less is more’. Agree to disagree, until I change your mind. If you really want more, then just make a bunch of these. Imagine bringing out an arsenal of freshly baked miniature zucchini breads for your guests, notes of cinnamon and nutmeg wafting off the top of each. Everyone will adore what you’ve made even before taking that first bite, simply because of the cute factor.
It’s hard to resist the taste of fresh seasonal produce. Zucchini are a summer squash, so now is the perfect time to find them at your local farmers’ market or in stores. I used to get confused between zucchini and cucumbers for no reason other than that they’re both green. I kid you not.
Now that I recognize a zucchini when I see one, I love using them for their versatility. They’ve been featured in stir fry, frittatas, and salad. Zoodles have become mainstream (the spiralizer I have can’t handle anything, aka I’m on the hunt for a new one). My personal favorite is when they’re thinly sliced and roasted as chips. Obviously it was only a matter of time before they nosed their way into dessert, too.
Funny thing about zucchini– it’s technically a fruit, since it grows from a blossom. Which, by the way, is totally edible. So I’m not technically helping you sneak any extra vegetables onto anyone’s plate. If you care about being technical. Regardless what you call it, zucchinis come with a vast amount of benefits:
- A high water content helps keep you cool in the summer heat and makes this bread moist (secretly rolling my eyes at everyone who involuntarily shrank away from that word)
- Copper is an active player in elastin production, keeping your skin flexible and preventing premature aging and wrinkles. It is also a strong antioxidant, further protecting you from free radicals that speed up the aging process
- Manganese is an important part of maintaining a healthy digestive tract, aiding your body absorb fat and glucose. By better metabolizing these compounds, your body gets more energy and reduced risk of blood sugar spikes
- Just like cucumbers, zucchinis have a cooling effect that reduces eye puffiness
You really can’t argue against baking yourself some zucchini bread, but in case I caught you on a stubborn day, here are just a few more reasons to heat up the oven.
Spelt flour first made its appearance on the blog in these cookies. I fell in love with the deep, slightly nutty taste that it gives. The earthiness isn’t overwhelming and really makes this zucchini bread a well-balanced act of sweet and savory. Spelt is another good source of manganese, so you can rest assured that your body won’t go into sugar shock from a slice or two of dessert. It has a higher protein count than regular whole wheat flour, although not as much gluten; many people who are gluten-sensitive find that they can eat spelt, but keep in mind that it is not gluten-free and you should be careful when having it if you do suffer from a gluten intolerance.
I used One Degree Organics’ sprouted spelt flour for two reasons. Firstly, I like to use sprouted grains when possible. The sprouting process makes grains, legumes, nuts and seeds easier to digest, which makes them seriously attractive for me and my rebellious digestive system. Sprouting morphs the grain into a plant. Your body recognizes this plant as a vegetable instead of a starch and proceeds to use vegetable, not pancreatic, enzymes to break it down. Additionally, sprouted flours give baked goods further developed flavors, increasing the deeply satisfactory taste. You can read more about the benefits of sprouted flours here.
The second reason I used it, in all honesty, is because it’s what I had on hand. Granted, I go out of my way to have it on hand, and think you should too. Just saying.
By now you have no viable excuse not to bake this. Zucchinis multiplies at near-alarming rates in the summer months, so you’re actually doing everyone a favor by using up a bit more of it.
What are some of your favorite zucchini recipes? I’d love to add to my repertoire!
If you try this recipe, I’d love your feedback. Leave a comment, save it on Pinterest, or tag #lensesandlentils on Instagram to share!
- ⅔ cup sprouted spelt flour*
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- ⅛ tsp kosher salt
- ½ cup grated unpeeled zucchini
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Whisk together all dry ingredients.
- Add in the zucchini and wet ingredients, stirring to combine. Mix in the chocolate chips, until fully incorporated into the batter.
- Lightly grease a mini loaf pan with coconut oil.* Pour in the batter and bake for 27-30 minutes. Let cool before slicing.
- Store covered tightly at room temperature for 2-3 days, or in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week (if it lasts that long).
*My mini loaf pan is 5.75 x 3 inches