Honey Lemon Zucchini Bread

Honey Lemon Zucchini Bread

I’ve been staring at two giant zucchini in my fridge for a couple weeks now.

One came from our garden here on the homestead, and the other came from my co-worker who had no use for it. Obviously when fraught with what to do with this giant zucchini she thought, “Liza will take it.”

Because, obviously. I’m like Mikey with the Life cereal when it comes to garden bounty.

Giant Zucchini

I spent 15 minutes shredding those two suckers, and ended up with a little over 6 cups of zucchini bits. Two cups got frozen, and the rest was used for zucchini bread.

We love zucchini bread over here. It’s one of my daughter’s favorites for lunch, two slices slathered with cream cheese and eaten like a sandwich. My son happens to like his plain OR warmed up with a little butter. (YUM!)

Honey Lemon Zucchini Bread

I could eat zucchini bread any way it’s served, any time (although I do have a soft spot for a warm buttered slice).

Today I tried a new variation on my regular ol’ zucchini bread recipe: the addition of honey and lemon. It has a sweet brightness that’s both unique and mouthwatering.

Of the 4 loaves, I gave one to my parents (Hey – my mom did grow one of those zucchini, so I feel like I owe them. Plus, food’s always more fun when you can share!), saved one in the fridge for this week, and froze two to use over the coming weeks.

Can’t wait for breakfast tomorrow! Mmm….

Honey Lemon Zucchini Bread
 
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Author:
Ingredients
  • 4 cups shredded zucchini
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • ¼ cup honey (preferably local)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Use non-stick spray to coat 4 large loaf pans.
  2. Use a whisk to combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk the eggs and oil until they turn a creamy color, then add the sugar, honey, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla and continue whisking the ingredients for 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Fix the paddle attachment to the mixer. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture about a cup at a time, mixing thoroughly before adding the next cupful. Once all the dry ingredients have been added, mix until it's just combined. The batter will be very thick!
  5. Add the zucchini to the batter, and using the mixer on low, gently incorporate the two. The moisture from the zucchini should loosen up the batter and make it easier to mix.
  6. Pour the batter into your prepared pans about half-way, and then bake them for about an hour (or until the top springs back when you press gently with your finger, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean).
  7. Let the loaves cool for about 15 minutes in the pan, and the remove them. Continue letting them sit on a rack until they've cooled completely.
Notes
TIP: If you plan on freezing these, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap once they've cooled, and then put them into freezer zip top bags.

 

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins

May, June and July proved to be three of the busiest months of my life. OF MY LIFE.

Okay, perhaps I’m being a little melodramatic.

The reality is, we did have a lot going on – mostly good stuff – and I’m glad that it’s all over.

We sold our house and moved to a new house. My daughter had her dance recital, final competition in southern Maryland and Nationals in Virginia Beach. I traveled to Boca Raton, Fla., as a blogger for ADMERICA! My husband coached a travel lacrosse team. My son had a week long kindergarten camp. I changed jobs (same company, different position). We finished renovating the garage to a family room in the new house. My sister got married! And we spent a week with my family at Slaughter Beach in Delaware.

And I didn’t write at all. I miss writing.

What’s the saying? Distance makes the heart grow fonder. (Right?)

So, the craziness is starting to die down, and I’m [clearly] writing again. WRITING!

That feels good.

You know what else is good? These strawberry banana oatmeal muffins.

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins

I baked a big batch in June just when the craziness was in full swing so that we could grab and go for breakfasts and snacks. The chunks of strawberries and bananas were a HUGE hit with the kiddos and the husband, and I loved the texture of the oatmeal.

They’ll also freeze well, which can be extremely helpful if you bake a super huge gigantic batch of muffins. Simply stand them in a zip top bag (flat) and then lay the bag (flat) in the freezer. Pull one out to throw in a lunch bag – it will thaw by lunchtime, or microwave it for a few seconds for an easy breakfast.

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins

I mean, how can you go wrong?

Deep breath. Hello, August!

5.0 from 7 reviews
Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins
 
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A delicious grab & go breakfast or snack!
Author:
Ingredients
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup quick cook oats
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, melted
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup roughly chopped strawberries
  • 1 cup chunky mashed bananas (2-3 over-ripe bananas)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and place paper liners in your muffin pans.
  2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl until they're combined.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fixed with the paddle attachment, add the eggs, oil, butter, milk and vanilla. Place the setting on medium and mix for 2 minutes. Gradually add the flour mix to the wet ingredients, and continue mixing until the batter is just combined. Add the oatmeal, banana and strawberries, and mix on low for 30 seconds.
  4. Use an ice cream scoop to fill each muffin tin about half-way to two-thirds full, and then sprinkle each one with a little more oatmeal.
  5. Bake the muffins for 25 minutes, or until the tops are golden and they bounce back when you gently press with your fingertip. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing them to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes about 24 muffins.

 

 

 

Zucchini Banana Muffins

Zucchini Banana Muffins

My day started out like any other Sunday: warm cup of coffee, perusing Facebook, checking email and making a few blog updates.

Specifically, I was changing the homepage to show post excerpts rather than two full posts, followed by post excerpts. Doing this involved going into the Editor and placing code within the Theme Functions (functions.php).

I wouldn’t consider myself an expert in any sort of coding; I always say I know enough to be dangerous. This morning I successfully made the updates to my homepage (W00T!), paused for a moment, and thought:

Wouldn’t it be nice if my social share buttons showed with all the excerpts?

Famous. Last. Words.

I added a plugin that was supposed to place social share buttons on post excerpts. In order for the buttons to only show on the excerpts, however, I needed to fuss with some more code within the Theme Functions. So I did.

And then I clicked the “Update File” button.

And the screen went white. Except for these God-awful words:

Parse error: syntax error, unexpected ‘<‘ in /home/lizhaw/amusingfoodie/wp-content/themes/focus/functions.php on line 135

And I couldn’t get back into ANYTHING. Not my admin panel. Not an old web version. NOTHING.

{deep breath}

I sent a friend a desperate Facebook message. Not for help; simply for empathy.

I sent my sister a Facebook message. “I BROKE MY BLOG,” I said.

I refreshed. I Googled. I…had no idea what to do.

And then I messaged a coder friend. He was at church, but said he could fix it within minutes once he was home. Bless him.

I said, “No rush. The world never came to an end because a food blog was broken.”

{deep breath}

I decided some perspective was was a good idea. Because, #FirstWorldProblems.

And THEN I decided to bake while I waited impatiently.

Zucchini Banana Muffins

Digging in the fridge, I realized I managed to forget about three zucchini from my next to last Hometown Harvest bag. Whoops.

Hometown Harvest Zucchini

They were in my crisper drawer, and had rolled to the back where I’d overlooked them for over two weeks. Despite being a little shriveled, they were otherwise fine, so I figured they’d be perfect with the brown over-ripe bananas on my counter for muffins. My daughter LOVES zucchini bread and muffins in her school lunch.

Zucchini Banana Muffins

Then, I made pizza dough (enough to freeze some for another day) and we had personal pizzas for lunch, followed by laziness and movie watching.

And just as my thoughts drifted….

Site is Fixed

Zucchini Banana Muffins
 
Prep time
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Author:
Ingredients
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 medium zucchini, peeled & grated
  • 3 over-ripe bananas, mashed
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F and place 24 liners in cupcake pans.
  2. Use a hand-held mixer to combine the eggs and oil in a large bowl. Once they look light yellow and creamy, add the sugar and vanilla and continue beating for 2 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and continue mixing with the hand-held mixer until they're combined - the mixture will be thick.
  4. Add the mashed bananas and shredded zucchini, and continue mixing until everything's just combined - about 30 seconds.
  5. Fill each liner just over halfway with the batter. Bake them for about 20 minutes, or until the tops bounce back when you gently press on them.
  6. Remove the muffins from the pan and let them cool completely on a wire rack. Makes 24 muffins.

Hometown Harvest is a blog sponsor, which means I’m compensated for spreading the word about what they do, my experiences and the deliveries I get. Interested? Click here to learn more, and make sure to tell them I sent you. All opinions are my own!

Cranberry Almond Zucchini Mini Muffins

cranberry almond muffins, muffin recipes, zucchini muffin recipes

I’ve been on a bit of a muffin kick lately.

Specifically, a zucchini muffin kick.

It’s not difficult, given the fact that I still have several bags of frozen shredded zucchini stacked in 2-cup portions in my freezer.

cranberry almond muffins, muffin recipes, zucchini muffin recipes

This past weekend I made another batch of zucchini mini muffins, but this time I skipped the cinnamon and nutmeg, and instead used dried cranberries and sliced almonds. And eggs.

If you’ve ever made a baked good with “stuff” in it (chocolate chips, nuts, etc.), and you’ve noticed that the “stuff” sinks to the bottom, I’ve got a simple fix for you!

See that photo above? Mix the “stuff” (in this case, cranberries and almonds) in with your dry ingredients. The light, dusty, floury coating will keep everything from sinking in the batter once you mix in the wet ingredients.

cranberry almond muffins, zucchini muffin recipes, muffin recipes

My daughter likes to eat these mini muffins with a slathering of cream cheese, and I often pack 3 or 4 of them in her lunch in lieu of a traditional sandwich.

cranberry almond muffins, zucchini muffin recipes, muffin recipes

I keep them in the refrigerator because we’ll go through an entire batch in a week, but these muffins also freeze well too. Just pull out a few, zap them in the microwave for 15 seconds or so, and voila! Breakfast in a flash.

Enjoy!

Cranberry Almond Zucchini Mini Muffins
 
Prep time
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Author:
Ingredients
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup sliced almonds
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F and use a non-stick spray to coat 2 mini muffin tins.
  2. Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cardamom together in a large bowl. Add the cranberries and almonds, whisking gently until the cranberries are lightly coated.
  3. In a separate bowl, use a hand-held mixer to beat the eggs and sugar until the mixture becomes creamy (about 2 minutes). Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and continue mixing with the handheld mixer until everything is just combined. The batter will be thick.
  4. Add the zucchini to the batter, and using the mixer on low, gently incorporate the two. The moisture from the zucchini should moisten up the batter and make it easier to mix.
  5. Use a small scoop to fill each mini muffin tin spot to about ¾" full, and then bake them for 25 minutes, or until they're golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes before removing them to a rack to finish cooling completely. Makes about 48 mini muffins.

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