Banana Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins

By Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team


Banana bread is a favorite to bake, eat and share with friends; zucchini is also a favorite that has been abundant in farmer’s markets this summer. So, with some extra zucchini and slightly browning bananas on hand, I decided to combine these two for one hopefully yummy experiment, and it worked! This is an easy (and tasty) way to incorporate fruits and veggies into your little one’s or your own day. Mashing a ripe banana, measuring dry ingredients and mixing are all tasks perfect for getting kids involved in the kitchen!



 Yields ~15 muffins

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup sugar

¼ cup milk

¼ cup olive oil

1 cup shredded (or made into noodles and then chopped*) zucchini

½ cup dark chocolate chips

¾ medium ripe banana, mashed

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 egg

½ tsp salt




  1. Preheat oven to 350F, and grease or line muffin tin.
  2. In medium bowl, combine dry ingredients of flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate large bowl, mix beaten egg, oil, milk, mashed banana, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Stir wet ingredients into dry until incorporated and moistened.
  4. Prepare zucchini using a shredder or by spiralizing into thin noodles and then chopping into ¼ inch pieces, for similar effect. Measure your 1 cup of zucchini now. Wrap measured zucchini into paper towel and squeeze out excess water–there will be a lot of it.
  5. Fold zucchini and chocolate chips into rest of mixture. Pour to fill muffin tins 2/3 of the way.
  6. Bake until toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean, about 25 minutes.


Easter Egg Cookies

Easter is only 10 days a way!  Besides your traditional Easter egg hunt and dying of Easter eggs, what do you have planned?  Have you ever thought about starting a new tradition with your family in the kitchen?  Don’t just create Easter eggs with your family this Easter, establish the new custom of designing your own Easter egg cookies!  Let your imagine go wild with the unique designs and vibrant colors of spring.  Share your creations with us on Facebook or Twitter!


Photo Courtesy of Cooking Light
Photo Courtesy of Cooking Light



  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour (about 6 ½ ounces)
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Food Coloring Optional



1. To prepare cookies, spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

2. Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 5 minutes). Beat in 1 teaspoon vanilla and egg. Add flour mixture, beating at low speed until blended.

3. Place dough between two sheets of plastic wrap. Roll dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. Chill 1 hour.

4. Preheat oven to 375°F.

5. Cut dough with a 2 ¼ inch egg-shaped cutter. Place cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 375°F for 8 minutes or until edges of cookies are browned. Cool cookies 1 minute on pan. Remove cookies from parchment; cool completely on a wire rack.

6. To prepare icing, combine powdered sugar, milk, and ¼ teaspoon vanilla; stir until smooth. Add food coloring, if desired. Stir well. Spread or pipe icing onto cookies.

The recipe and photo used in this post were courtesy of Cooking Light. To see the originally posted recipe please click here.

Cranberry Walnut Granola Cookies

Cranberry Walnut Granola Cookies

March is National Nutrition Month!  National Nutrition Month is a month to share nutrition education and of course to celebrate some of favorite foods.  We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate the start of March than by sharing our original recipe using KIND granola clusters.  We mixed some of our favorite things into one cookie – cranberries, walnuts, and of course KIND clusters granola!


Makes 24 Cookies


  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups Oats and Honey Clusters Kind Granola
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup walnuts, chopped



  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine brown sugar, granulated sugar, whole wheat flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt (dry ingredients).
  3. Slowly mix in vanilla, egg, and butter (wet ingredients).
  4. Mix dry and wet ingredients well.
  5. Add in Oats and Honey Clusters Kind Granola, chopped walnuts, and dried cranberries.  Mix well.
  6. On an ungreased cookie sheet, drop 1-1 ½ inch balls 3 inches apart.
  7. Bake cookies at 375°F for 12-15 minutes.

 Giveaway: KIND granola Clusters

We are giving away a each flavor of KIND granola clusters to one lucky subscriber!

To enter you must do at least one of the following:

-Be a Mom Dishes It Out subscriber (you can do so at the top of our homepage)

-Tweet us @MomDishesItOut

-Like us on Facebook

-Enter using Raffle Copter below

Giveaway ends Friday, March 13th!

A raffle copter giveaway

Double Chocolate Cupcakes

Double-Chocolate Cupcakes

With Valentine’s Day in just a couple of days, we’re sure that spending time with your loved ones is on your mind.  Get your dose of love by baking these yummy cupcakes with your kids.  Try these delicious double chocolate cupcakes as a sweet snack!

Courtesy of Cooking Light


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼  cup butter, softened
  • ½  cup egg substitute
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½  cup buttermilk
  • 1 ¼  ounces dark (70 % cocoa) chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; stir with a whisk.

3. Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well combined (about 3 minutes).

4. Add egg substitute and vanilla, beating well. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to granulated sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture.

5. Fold in chocolate.

6. Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups lined with muffin cup liners.

7. Bake at 350° for 18 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

8. Remove from pan; cool completely on a wire rack.

9. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving.

The recipe and photo used in this post were courtesy of Cooking Light. To see the originally posted recipe please click here.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Recipe

With the holidays just around the corner, we wanted to share one of Laura’s recipes. These make a great addition to a holiday party or cookie exchange. What is your favorite holiday cookie recipe? Share with us in the comments below!

Photo Credit: jypsygen via Compfight cc

Recipe by Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE,CEDRD, CDN
Originally  published in Everyday Health



  • ¾ cup canola oil
  • 1 cup honey or agave nectar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup toasted chopped walnuts
  • 1½ cups wheat germ
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • ¾ cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  • ½ cup powdered fat-free milk


  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Line 2 large baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the canola oil, honey, eggs, vanilla extract, raisins, chopped walnuts, wheat germ, and rolled oats.
  • In a medium bowl, sift together the flour and powdered milk.
  • Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ones until well-combined.
  • Scoop out spoonfuls of the cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Cookies will not spread much, so you don’t need to leave a lot of room between them.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until dry around the edges.
  • Cool on a wire rack and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Fall is the season for apples but sometimes apple pie gets too boring! This is a great breakfast item or dessert that will feel fresh yet familiar on a cold day!

Photo Courtesy of Cooking Light



  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup 1% low-fat milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup peeled, diced Granny Smith apple (about 1 apple)
  • Cooking spray

Streusel Topping

  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into pieces


1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. To prepare cake, lightly spoon 1 1/2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture. Combine milk, melted butter, vanilla, and egg, stirring with a whisk; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Fold in apple. Pour batter into an 8-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray.
3. To prepare streusel, combine brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle streusel evenly over batter. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack before serving. Serve warm.

To Freeze:

To prepare ahead, cool completely, wrap (still in the pan) in foil, and leave out at room temperature for up to one day, or freeze for up to three months. To reheat thawed cake, unwrap and bake at 250° for 15 to 20 minutes.

The recipe and photo featured in this post were provided by Cooking Light. To read the original recipe please click here.

Pumpkin-Applesauce Muffins

Even though Halloween has passed, we are still enjoying pumpkin! Take a peek at this delicious recipe from our contributor Christie Caggiani!

Pumpkin-Applesauce Muffins
From the kitchen of Christie Caggiani, RDN, LDN, CEDRD

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 12


Serve with a glass of milk or Greek yogurt, and banana or other fruit for a quick breakfast or snack!  These are even better the next day, and they’re a super way to jazz up your kids’ palate when you mix-in some fruits and veggies.



  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup applesauce
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • ½ cup canned pumpkin
  • ¼ cup chopped raisins (optional)
  • ¼ cup chopped nuts (optional)


  1. Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F.  Grease 12 muffin cups, or line the cups with paper muffin liners.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice; set aside.  Combine the brown sugar, oil, applesauce, pumpkin, buttermilk, and beaten eggs and mix until well blended.  Pour the pumpkin mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until combined.  Fold in the raisins and nuts, if desired.
  3. Divide the batter evenly in the prepared muffin pans.  Bake in the preheated oven until the tops spring back when lightly pressed, 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool the muffin pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes before removing the muffins from the pan.


Other mix-in options: dried cranberries, granola, apple pieces, chocolate chips, pumpkin or sesame seeds, shredded carrots or zucchini, peanut butter….or get creative and try something new!

Litehouse Foods' Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes

Halloween is fast approaching. Get ready with this festive recipe courtesy of our friends at Litehouse Foods!

Photo courtesy of Litehouse Foods


  • 4 eggs
  • ½ c. vegetable oil
  • ½ c. plain yogurt or applesauce
  • 15 oz. pure pumpkin puree (from 1 can)
  • 2/3 c. apple juice or water
  • 3 c. sugar
  • 2 ½ c. flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. ground clove
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 c. butter (2 sticks) at room temperature
  • 2 2lb. bags powdered sugar
  • 1 16oz. tub Litehouse® Butterscotch Caramel Dip  plus more for decorating
  • 6 Tbsp. heavy cream



  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, oil, yogurt, pumpkin puree, juice, and sugar.
  4. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, ginger, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and whisk until just combined.
  6. Pour ¼ c. of batter into each cupcake liner.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from pan and allow to cool completely.
  8. Repeat with remaining batter, makes 3 dozen cupcakes.
  9. In the bowl of a standing mixer whip the butter and Litehouse Butterscotch Caramel Dip until light and fluffy.
  10. With the mixer on low speed add the powdered sugar ½ a bag at a time, adding 1 Tbsp. of the cream after each sugar addition.
  11. Mix until fully combine before adding the next ½ bag of powdered sugar.
  12. Add remaining 2 tablespoons of cream and mix on high speed until light and fluffy.
  13. Decorate cupcakes!

Rice Pudding

If you and your family like rice pudding, then we highly suggest trying out this recipe. Get your little chefs ready to help you make this tasty dessert!

Photo Credit: arsheffield via Compfight cc


  • 2 quart 1% or 2% milk
  • ¾ cup white rice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • Optional toppings: almonds, pumpkin seeds, fresh blueberries, fresh strawberries



  1. Put milk, rice, vanilla, sugar, salt, and raisins into an enamel stockpot.
  2. Cook stockpot over medium flame, stirring constantly.
  3. When mixture thickens (approximately 45 minutes), mix in beaten egg.
  4. Pour mixture into serving dish and chill in refrigerator.
  5. Sprinkle cinnamon over top and serve.


Fourth of July Fruit Kabobs

Happy 4th of July! To celebrate this summer holiday we wanted to share a quick, easy, and fun dessert. These red, white, and blue kabobs are both festive and delicious, plus they make a great activity for the family. We hope you enjoy!

Photo Credit: R.Duran via Compfight cc

Fourth of July Fruit Kabobs
Makes 10 skewers


  • 1 pint strawberries, rinsed and stems removed
  • 1 pint blueberries, rinsed
  • 3-4 bananas, cut into 1 inch-wide slices
  • 10 skewers
  • Other Options: marshmallows, watermelon, white cake cut into cubes


  1. Place each fruit into their own bowls.
  2. Have your kids add fruits and other items as they wish.
  3. They can be stored in the fridge until ready to eat.
  4. Tips: make it a learning activity and have your kids make patterns with the kabobs.


Take a page from The Kitchn’s book and make a flag to serve on a platter for dessert!