I don’t do much baking in the summertime. But there’s always one thing that finds its way into my oven in July; that’s zucchini bread. This season I changed up tradition to create a chocolaty concoction. The result: it’s a keeper!
Calories saved: 70
Why it’s better for you? Whole grains and cocoa!
Disclosure Note: I’m on the Pistachio Health consumer advisory board. I’m not paid for this posting. All recipe choices and opinions are my own.
- 1/4 cup + 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil
- 1 1/4 cups + 1 tablespoon whole-wheat pastry flour
- 1/3 cup + 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 large eggs
- 3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
- 1 small fully-ripened banana, mashed
- 1 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest, or to taste
- 1 1/4 cups coarsely grated zucchini (about 1 large; do not drain)
- 1/3 cup chopped (60 to 65% cacao) dark chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup roasted salted pistachios, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly brush a 9- x 5- inch loaf pan with 1 teaspoon of the grapeseed oil. Dust with 1 tablespoon of the flour.
- Whisk together the remaining 1 1/4 cups flour, 1/3 cup of the cocoa powder, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl.
- Beat the eggs, the remaining 1/4 cup oil, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the mashed banana, extracts, and orange zest with an electric mixer on medium speed in a large bowl. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just combined. Stir in the zucchini, chocolate chips, and pistachios until evenly combined.
- Transfer the batter to the loaf pan. Dust the top with the remaining 1 teaspoon cocoa powder and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.
- Bake until springy to the touch, about 55 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Remove the bread from the pan and completely cool. Cut into 18 slices and serve at room temperature.
Per serving: 140 calories, 6g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 20mg cholesterol, 130mg sodium, 22g total carbohydrate, 2g dietary fiber, 13g sugars, 3g protein
The “Before” Recipe
Inspired by: zucchini bread
Per serving (16 slices per loaf): 210 calories, 10g total fat, 1.5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 25mg cholesterol, 200mg sodium, 30g total carbohydrate, 1g dietary fiber, 19g sugars, 3g protein
- Go whole grain when possible; it actually makes zucchini bread seem nuttier
- Play up flavor by way of pure extracts or zest
- Enhance sweetness naturally, such as incorporating mashed banana
- Don’t rely on oil or butter for lusciousness, consider going chocolaty