Here’s another zucchini recipe for ya. This is of the chocolate kind, which is always a good way to hide some veggies from your kids. This is a recipe that comes from my blogging friend, Jamie, over at Jamie Cooks It Up. These muffins are moist and delicious and would be a great dessert to send in your kids school lunch. I do however, prefer them warm from the oven. I made mine into mini muffins. What kid doesn’t like a muffin in mini version? I also used my Demarle pan which made it a breeze to make the mini version.
I loved these muffins with the exception of the nutmeg in them, so I left it out of the recipe. I wondered about it when I was making it. I think it takes away from the chocolaty goodness. However, the cinnamon was fine. Chocolate and cinnamon actually go quite well together.
I also have some fun ideas today for you to add to the school lunches you may be packing for your little ones. I know that school has started for some kiddos already. Mine all head out next week. I found some fun ideas on some other blogs and have some of my own too.
The main staple in my kids lunch is usually a sandwich. The best way to keep the good old sandwich fun and exciting is to change out the bread. You can use tortillas, pita bread, mini bagels, bagel thins, sandwich thins, mini rolls, or you can even make mini sub sandwiches using hot dog buns. You can also use cookie cutters to change the sandwiches into fun shapes. My kids also enjoy those crust-less peanut butter and jam sandwiches which can be expensive to buy. I have a krustbuster that allows me to make my own at home. This is great because I know what bread, what peanut butter, and what jelly or jam my sandwiches are made with. Love it.
I also got some great ideas from Kiersten Blanchard when she was on Studio 5. She keeps baskets full of choices for lunch. One basket can be kept in the fridge with items like yogurt and string cheese. Then she has a basket with crackers and chips. Another will have fresh produce. Just fill them when they get low on your next grocery trip. This way mom gives the kids some choices she is happy with and the kids want to eat their lunch because they got to pick out items they want. You can check out the tv segment from Kiersten. She also has some great lunch boxes suggestions to purchase if you haven’t found one yet. If you are crafty, you can even make your own. I found a cute pattern to make one over at A Lemon Squeezy Life Made Easy Peezy Home.
Another tip is to buy your lunch ingredients in bulk and portion them out in your own plastic baggies. This usually is much cheaper than buying the individually packaged items from the store. I do this all the time for lunches and snacks. Portion them out at the beginning of the week and you are set. I also found some other money saving tips over at Tightwad Mom’s Fugal Forum. She has some good ideas if you want to do even more items in bulk like drinks and she has a good list of ideas to pack in lunches too.
Over at Moments to Live By I found a cute idea for a lunch kit. She keeps a container stocked with cute napkins, sandwich cutters, stickers, cute sandwich bags, prizes, jokes, and food markers to help make each lunch she packs fun for the kids. She also has a cute idea for a tic, tac, toe lunch you could pack one day. It includes a tic, tac, toe board made out of a sheet of self sticking laminate or clear contact paper that you add to the inside of the lunch box. Then you send a dry erase maker for tic, tac, toe fun. I also thought you could add a piece of clear or white contact paper to the lunch box to be a message board that mom could use to leave a message in the lunch box each day.
Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- 4 C flour
- 1 1/2 C sugar
- 1/2 C cocoa
- 1 t baking soda
- 1/2 t baking powder
- 3/4 t salt
- 1 t cinnamon
- 1 1/2 C oil
- 1 1/2 C milk
- 3 eggs
- 2 t vanilla
- 2 C shredded zucchini
- 1 1/2 C semi sweet chocolate chips
2. Mix all of the dry ingredients in a separate bowl with a wooden spoon.
3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir, just until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
5. Bake at 350 for 17 minutes.