Firecracker Zucchini Cornbread Muffins
Mark and I served these cornbread muffins at our wedding. No joke. At a wedding, when you sit down to eat dinner, what is usually right in front of you? A big fluffy roll or piece of bread and butter right? But alas, I am gluten free, and we wanted everything at the wedding to be gluten free. Thus, this recipe was born. Let’s make these delicious, gluten free, firecracker zucchini cornbread muffins!
One morning when Mark and I were at my parents house, we were eating some gluten free cornbread with eggs for breakfast when inspiration struck. I suggested we serve cornbread. It would be an outdoors wedding, kind of rustic, and seriously, who doesn’t love cornbread? It is cheep, easy to make, and holds up well for a few days.
My mom and I then set out to find the perfect cornbread muffin recipe. We experimented with classics, variations with whole kernels, sweet, spicy, and everything in between. This recipe, a combination of basically everything good, was the winner.
I got so many great comments about the our cornbread muffins at the wedding. They are so moist (because of the zucchini), surprisingly spicy (from the red pepper flakes), and sweet (because of the maple syrup). Visually, they are also lovely with the green zucchini threads, dots of chia seeds, and teeny speckles of pepper flakes…. And you’d never know they were gluten free.
Now you know the story of our wedding cornbread muffins, lets make some!
- 3 Tbsp. chia seeds
- 1 egg
- 1 cup cornmeal (ensure certified gf for gluten free eaters)
- ¼ cup chickpea flour*
- 1.5 Tbsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 1 - 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 cup plant-based milk (I used almond milk)
- 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 cup grated zucchini
- 3 scallions, sliced into thin rings**
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- Mix the chia seeds with ½ cup water in a medium-sized bowl and set aside to gel—about 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, sift the cornmeal, corn flour, baking powder, salt, and red pepper flakes together.
- Add the egg, milk, vinegar, coconut oil, and maple syrup to the chia gel. Whisk until well combined.
- Pour the wet mixture over the dry mixture. Stir until just combined—be careful not over-mix. Fold in the zucchini and scallions.
- Grease muffin tins*** or add cupcake liners. Pour ¼ cup amounts of batter into each cup, scraping out any batter remaining in the bowl.Bake until the edges of each muffin are golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Let cool for around 15 minutes before removing and placing on cooling rack.
- Muffins are best eaten fresh but will last for up to 3 days in airtight container on counter of up to a week in refrigerator.
**Scallions are amazing. They are like mini onions that have a garlic-y flavor. Aka the best combo in the world… Unfortunately, they are not very common, take a little extra work because they are so tiny, and tend to be a bit more expensive. My parents had a bunch in their garden that we used for the wedding, but regardless - I think that this recipe is worth the extra penny. If you don’t have scallions, a small yellow onion will work.
***Muffin sizes: Pictured in my images are medium-sized muffins. We served regular sized muffins at the wedding - which is what the cooking times in this recipe are for. If you want to make smaller-sized muffins like I did, pour less batter into each up, cut the cooking time down to 15-20 minutes and watch them carefully.
Cast-iron skillet option: Another option here would be too cook the cornbread in a cast-iron skillet. I suggest using a large 13” skillet, placing it in the oven for a few minutes before dumping the batter in, greasing well with coconut oil, and baking for about 15-20 minutes. It is important to keep in mind when using a cast-iron skillet that the food inside will continue to cook after it has been removed from the oven because the skillet remains hot.
Nutrition Information is a rough estimate of 1 out of 12 muffins.
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