These allergy-friendly Zucchini Banana Bread Muffins for Kids have been a staple in my house for pretty much as long as I’ve had kids! If you’re looking for a way to get some more green veggies into their diet – this is it.
Keep reading for the recipe, my top tips on how to make baking easier on yourself, and my thoughts on making veggies kid-friendly.
The Baking Struggle Is Real
It’s not easy to bake for your kids, especially if they’re around while you do it! It takes time, focus, and planning, and those are all hot commodities when you’re busy with, well, life! I know for me, before I had kids, I actually looked forward to and loved getting into the kitchen. But now with two kids underfoot, it’s not exactly the relaxing experience it once was.
Because it can be a struggle, when I bake for my kids (which is honestly pretty rare these days) I make it count, doing my best to pack in some extra nutrients in the batter. Sometimes that means adding chia seeds, flax seeds, or hemp seeds, and sometimes it means getting some veggies in there, like zucchini, carrots, or pumpkin. (Check out these pumpkin packed oatmeal bars!)
And, when I do get the perfect combo of energy, time, and motivation to bake, I do my best to make things as easy as possible on myself. That’s why I adore this muffin recipe– Everything goes right into the blender– no sink full of dirty bowls to deal with when they’re done!
How To Make Baking Easier On Yourself
- A kitchen scale makes baking life a breeze. You’ll see gram measurements included in this recipe in case you’ve adopted the scale like me. I have this one (affiliate link) and I use it all the time.
- Silicone muffin trays save me so much time and struggle. The worst is when you bake some muffins, and then they’re horribly stuck to the muffin tin or the paper liners. So discouraging and such a pain! With these, literally nothing sticks. It’s amazing.
- This large cookie scoop makes filling the muffin tin such a breeze– especially if you’re letting your kid help you. There will be less mess with a cookie scoop than with a regular spoon.
- I use my Vitamix blender for WAY more than baking, but I really love it for blender recipes like this one because it pulverizes everything completely. It is admittedly a big purchase, but I’ve gotten so much use out of it so I still recommend getting one if you can. I’ve had my Vitamix for over 10 years and she’s still going strong! If you want to make smoothies and get some veggies in there you’ll have much better results with a great blender.
Sneaking Veggies into your Kid’s Food
Since this recipe has veggies in it (that you literally cannot taste or detect at all!), let’s talk about the idea of sneaking veggies into your child’s food.
I never want you to lie to your little one about what’s in their food, because it’s more important for them to trust you than for you to get some extra veggies in them. But, you can absolutely mask the taste of veggies to get them more comfortable with the idea of eating them!
For example, my son would never in a million years eat spinach on its own right now, and that’s totally fine. But when I add spinach to a smoothie, he sees it going in there, he may help me put it in (if he’s feeling cooperative that day), and he’ll ultimately drink the smoothie in the end. This is really helpful exposure for him, seeing and knowing that a food he doesn’t like can go into a food that he does like, even if he can’t actually taste it.
I actually have a whole blog post on sneaking in veggies, and you can read it here.
Why I Love These Muffins So Much
Okay, so now back to the best zucchini banana bread muffins for kids in the world! Why do I love them so much? Easy:
- They’re easy and low-mess.
- They let me get more veggies into my kids.
- They’re allergy-friendly! No eggs, gluten, dairy, nuts, or peanuts to be found, so it should work for most kids (even those with multiple allergies).
- They’re easy to customize. You can use either rolled oats or quick oats and still get great results. (You could probably also use a different flour altogether, but I haven’t tried that, so I’m not necessarily recommending it. If you give it a go, I’d love to know how it works! Leave a comment below this post letting me know the type of flour you tried and whether or not you’d recommend it.) Oh, and if you’d rather omit the maple syrup, I’d just increase the banana by ¼ cup OR add ¼ cup of any type of milk. I haven’t tried this yet though, so I can’t guarantee results.
Do you want another muffin recipe to try?
Try these healthy strawberry muffins for kids, and especially for picky eaters! Click here for the recipe!
Or try these healthy toddler muffins. If you have a picky eater who doesn’t like big flavors or chunks of fruit in their muffins, this is the recipe for you.
Zucchini Banana Bread Muffins for Kids
- 2½ Cups Rolled Oats (200g)
- 1¼ Cups Mashed Banana (300g)
- 1 Cup Zucchini (200g)
- 1 tsp Baking Soda
- ½ tsp Cinnamon
- ¾ tsp Baking Powder
- ¼ tsp Salt
- 1½ tsp Vanilla Extract
- ⅓ Cup Avocado Oil
- ¼ Cup Pure Maple Syrup
- 1½ Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- Mini Chocolate Chips (Optional)
- Preheat oven to 375 F, and prepare 2 muffin tins (regular or mini muffins).
- Spray with oil if you don’t have liners or a silicone muffin tin.
- Put the oats in a blender and blend until a fine powder forms.
- If you don’t have a high powered blender, grate the zucchini.
- Add all other ingredients to the blended oats (except optional chocolate chips) and blend until smooth.
- Fill muffin tins.
- Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.
- Bake! For regular size muffins, bake 16-18 mins. For mini muffins, bake 10-13 mins.
- Let cool, then serve!
Want more sugar-free, kid-friendly recipes?
Grab your copy of my Ebook No Sugar, Still Sweet! You (and your toddler) will love trying them all. And don’t forget to leave me a comment below if you try any new substitutions!
This recipe has been included by Twinkl among their top picks for 10+ Healthy (and delicious) lunch ideas for the whole family.
Tabitha · December 20, 2022 at 10:05 am
Could you add blueberries or other fruits to these?
Anonymous · September 27, 2022 at 9:18 pm
These are great thanks
Andrea H · August 8, 2021 at 10:13 pm
One of the best muffin recipes out there! My 4 yo asks for these daily! That is a huge win in my book!
Erika Ross · January 27, 2021 at 8:34 pm
Hi There, do you have to squeeze the liquid out of the zucchini prior to adding the grated bits to the blender?
Mama Knows Nutrition · February 3, 2021 at 10:36 am
Hi nope you don’t have to squeeze it out, the liquid is needed for the recipe
Elisa · January 26, 2021 at 7:11 am
If I don’t have that kind of vinegar, what can I use instead?
Mama Knows Nutrition · January 26, 2021 at 11:18 am
hmmm, so you need the acid to active the baking soda, you might be able to use lemon juice or I’d try another light vinegar like if you have champange vinegar or white wine vinegar, but I haven’t tried these so I’m not sure if it’ll come out the same
Ayndrea · January 24, 2021 at 12:10 am
My toddler and I just made these tonight and they are delicious! I love the idea of using the avocado oil. Thank you!
Mama Knows Nutrition · January 24, 2021 at 12:23 pm
I’m so glad you loved them!
Lea A Carlson · January 4, 2021 at 9:25 am
I’d like to try your recipes for my husband and me–we are seniors but trying to eat healthier and reduce sugar and fat in our diets. Is there any nutritional information on your recipes? That would help me decide on what to make and try for us. Your cookbook looks fantastic, too, but I’d like the nutritional/caloric breakdown to be available.
Many thanks for taking the time to answer at your convenience.
Nichole · August 8, 2021 at 8:05 am
My husband and I live all the recipes! It’s been so great to cook healthy meals for our two year old and know we are going to enjoy them too!
Tina · November 16, 2020 at 9:44 am
can you freeze them?
Mama Knows Nutrition · November 16, 2020 at 9:55 am
yep! They freeze well for about a month
Kacie · November 15, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Hey yes I would try any neutral liquid oil like canola oil, vegetable oil, extra light olive oil (NOT extra virgin), coconut oil may work too
Morgan · November 15, 2020 at 5:35 am
Same question as Rebecca above – is there an appropriate substitute for avocado oil? Maybe coconut oil?
Rebecca · November 8, 2020 at 11:41 am
What’s a replacement for avocado oil? Thanks!
Natosha Hawk · March 4, 2020 at 10:14 am
I tried applesauce and it was fine for a pinch, but I’m going to do bananas now and let you know.
Natosha · February 24, 2020 at 5:53 am
What if we’ve run out of bananas?
Mama Knows Nutrition · February 24, 2020 at 10:47 am
Hmm I don’t know a great substitute — you can try applesauce if you have it, but I think it would be better with bananas!