With this post (and these zucchini chocolate chip cookies), I give you permission to eat cookies for breakfast. But seriously these cookies are the perfect sweet treat to make at the end of summer, with all of that extra zucchini you have from your garden (or your friendly neighbor’s garden)!
After all, these cookies have eggs (breakfast), granola (breakfast), and chocolate chips (breakfast-ish), so if you sneak one with your morning coffee, I won’t tell a soul.
Plus, I’m pretty sure it’s okay to eat zucchini bread for breakfast and these cookies are essentially zucchini bread except smaller and actually with less sugar than a lot of zucchini bread recipes.
Eat these for breakfast, or fine… dessert. But, they are definitely worth making especially if you have a pile of zucchini you don’t know what to do with!
Zucchini Cooking Tips
Zucchini are approximately 100% water. Obviously, they aren’t 100% water, but it does feel that way sometimes when you are trying to cook with them.
So the very first instruction for baking with zucchini, especially for these cookies, is to dry out the shredded zucchini as much as possible. If you don’t do this, your zucchini chocolate chip cookies will be too wet and will end up sad.
I try to get rid of excess moisture by wrapping the shredded zucchini in a few paper towels and pressing out as much liquid as possible.
If you’re measuring, you want about two cups of zucchini for these cookies. That should be about two small zucchini, but it’s also not essential to be perfect. A little bit less or more zucchini won’t kill the cookies.
My Secret Zucchini Cookie Ingredient
Zucchini tends to be soft when it is baked and cookies aren’t known for having a lot of texture.
The secret ingredient I like to add to these cookies to give them some body and crunch is granola!
The granola gives the cookies some great texture and body and adds in a lot of built-in flavor. I used almond granola for this version, but literally, any granola will work fine.
If you don’t have any granola, you could use rolled oats, which will turn these into a zucchini oatmeal cookie, but still will add some nice texture to them.
Instructions for Baking these Zucchini Cookies
To start the cookies, whisk together the flour with the spices. I like to use cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt for my version. If you want you can substitute up to 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour for a little extra nutty flavor.
As with any good cookie dough, cream together the butter with the sugars until they are light and fluffy. I used my stand mixer with the paddle attachment for this but you can also just use a hand mixer.
For the sugars, I like to use a mix of brown sugar and white sugar, but you could use all of one or the other depending on what you have.
Then add in some almond extract (or you could use vanilla extract) and an egg.
Once that is blended, add in the dry ingredients and stir it together until everything is just combined. Try not to over-mix the cookie dough. Even if you have some bits of flour not mixed, that’s okay.
Now for the add-ins! Stir in all that zucchini, chocolate, and granola. If you wanted to add some nuts to these like walnuts or pecans, you could add up to 1/2 cup of nuts as well.
When your dough is ready, roll out big heaping spoonfuls of the dough onto two baking sheets. You should get about 16 large cookies. Give the cookies plenty of space on each cookie sheet.
Bake these chocolate chip zucchini cookies in a 350F oven for 14-16 minutes. The finished cookies should puff up slightly and be browned on the edges.
Let them cool a bit, ideally on a wire rack, before chomping down, but I personally like them while they are a little warm so the chocolate is still melted! They are also great at room temperature though.
These are the cookies of summer: light, but still packed with chocolate.
Plus, did I mention that you can eat them for breakfast?!
Storing these cookies for later
These zucchini cookies store wonderfully in an airtight container on the counter for a day or two or in the fridge for longer. The zucchini keeps them really moist so they don’t dry out and stay very tender and delicious.
It’s almost like a zucchini bread (or these zucchini muffins), but just smaller so it’s easier to sneak one while you are on the move or while you watch a show.
My Zucchini Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
Zucchini chocolate chip cookies packed with add-ins plus a secret ingredient to give it some texture and flavor! These are a must-make in summer!
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup almond granola
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Grate your zucchini and use a few paper towels to soak up some of the moisture from the zucchini.
2) In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars until it’s light and fluffy. Then add in an egg and the almond extract. Mix together quickly and then add in the flour mixture. Mix until the dough is just combined.
3) Stir in zucchini, chocolate chips, and granola. Stir until combined.
4) Form up large heaping spoonfuls of cookie dough and divide them on two cookie sheets. I recommend doing 8 cookies per sheet so they have room to expand. If you want, dot each cookies with a few chocolate chips for an extra touch.
5) Take the cookies at 350 degrees F. for 14-16 minutes.
6) Remove the cookies and let them cool for a few minutes before chowing down. Store cookies in an airtight container and they will keep for a few days (not that they will last that long).