Zucchini & Pepita Muffins (Grain Free)

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Day to day, things can get a little chaotic to say the least. Time runs away, mealtimes are sometimes snatched on the run, and before you know it it’s time for the next serving of wholesome goodness. (Kids really like to eat hey!) So creating healthy savoury snacks that are ready to go, on the go, is really a lifesaver when the going gets… chaotic!

Check out my recipe for Zucchini & Pepita Muffins, the perfect savoury muffin treat to enjoy as a mid-day snack, as a savoury breakfast or even as a lunch with a side of veges. Try them halved and toasted, with bacon and egg in the middle. Or sliced open and drizzled with honey. We love them dipped in soup at dinner time, or in place of hamburger buns for mini burgers! And you can add some chopped up veggies, cooked bacon, sun-dried tomatoes, feta, or olives for additions to savoury muffins – or change them to a sweet muffin by adding a couple of tablespoons of honey and a couple of handfuls of sultanas and some mixed spices! Play with the flavours and see what you come up with.

Best of all, these are dairy free (if made with coconut oil), nut free, grain free and gluten free. Great for school lunch boxes, and they freeze well.

zucchini and pepita muffins quirky cooking

Note: This recipe makes 12 large muffins. I cook them in “If You Care” muffin cups, and never have a problem with them sticking. (These paper cups are bleach free and non-toxic.)


Zucchini & Pepita Muffins
Yields 12
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  1. 250g activated* pepitas or 300g raw (non-activated) pepitas (2 cups)
  2. 3 eggs
  3. 150g zucchinis, quartered
  4. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  5. 1/2 tsp bicarb soda
  6. 60g coconut oil or unsalted butter
  7. 50g sunflower seeds
  1. Place pepitas in bowl and mill 8 sec/speed 8. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
  2. Place eggs in bowl, insert butterfly, and mix 5 mins/speed 4. Remove butterfly.
  3. Add zucchini and chop 5 sec/speed 4.
  4. Add remaining ingredients including pepita meal, and mix 10 sec/speed 5.
  5. Pour mixture into muffin cups and cook at 180C for 20 mins.
  1. Add fried, chopped bacon bits, chopped sun-dried tomatoes, kalamata olives, or other savoury additions to batter and stir through.
  2. Or top each muffin with a halved cherry tomato.
  3. Or swirl a tsp of pesto through each muffin in the muffin cups.
  4. Muffins can also be made into sweet muffins by reducing salt to 1/4 tsp, adding 2 Tbspns honey, 2 tsp mixed spices (or just cinnamon), and a couple of handfuls of sultanas or other dried fruit.
  5. * Activated pepitas are soaked overnight in slightly salty water then dehydrated until very dry and crispy. This makes them easier to digest. The sunflower seeds can be activated too if desired.
Quirky Cooking https://www.quirkycooking.com.au/




  1. tracey lawrence says:

    Can these be made egg free also?

  2. Dani says:

    Yum! I just whipped up a batch of these while waiting for dinner to cook. The mixture tastes delicious.

  3. Lulu says:

    Thanks Jo, these are fantastic. So tasty, healthy and a great way to use up excess zuchhinis.

  4. Shannon says:

    Non thermomix can you just process the nuts, beat the eggs and mix together?

    • QuirkyJo says:

      Hi Shannon – Yes – that should work. Just make sure you process the zucchini quite small, as the thermomix cuts it up quite small in the process of mixing. Also- make sure the eggs are beaten well and nice and fluffy. Happy cooking.

  5. Anna says:

    Thanks for this recipe Jo – I made this into a slice (cos I couldn’t be bothered with muffins) but added home made sun dried tomatoes, leftover bacon, feta, coriander pesto, some herbs and chia seeds it was YUMMO!! We then topped it while warm with our tzatziki

    • QuirkyJo says:

      Sounds great, Anna! We often make it into a slice when we’re in a hurry! Its delicious with bacon and sun-dried tomatoes, isn’t it!? πŸ™‚

  6. Jo says:

    Hi Jo,
    What does the dehydrated part after soaking mean/ how do you do it?

  7. Megan says:

    Hi Jo! These sound delicious – fingers crossed my Thermomix arrives on Friday – this recipe is on my list to try this weekend! Do you think they would freeze ok? I am planning to put some of the things I make into a care package for a friend. Thanks!

  8. Sarah says:

    These are incredible Jo! Seriously yum 5 stars hands down!

  9. Naomi says:

    Just made these with a sweet version – added cinnamon, honey and some goji berries. Great!

  10. Sharon says:

    Hi Jo,
    Can you tell me how long the cooking time would be, if I made this into a loaf?

  11. Ann` says:

    Hi Joe!
    I have been wanting to make these muffins since you first posted about them, i finally got around to it today, and found i didn’t have enough pepitas!
    So i substituted the rest with almond meal (up to 250g), the mixture was think and i needed to spoon it into the muffin tins, but it worked and it tastes divine!
    Thank you so much for yet another amazing recipe!

  12. Laura says:

    Thanks for the lovely recipe. Great texture – not eggy and wet like some other savoury muffins we’ve tried. I used 50/50 almond/pepita, cut the salt (as per your sweet variation), added 2 tsps honey, cinnamon & mixed spice (again, as per your sweet variation), and used 30g chia seeds in the place of mixed seeds. Next time I will add a bit more zucchini I think as the chia seeds soak up moisture nicely and I’d like to up the vege content.
    Fantastic recipe. Great for me, the toddler, and the baby! Portable snacks for all three of us. πŸ™‚

  13. Laura says:

    Thanks for the recipe Jo. Great texture – not wet and eggy like some grain free muffins.
    We tried your sweet variation (just the honey & spices, didn’t do the dried fruit yet) which was lovely. And even great portable food for my 9 month old. Mum, toddler, and baby all happy eating these.

  14. Alida says:

    They really look good your muffins. An easy recipe and super delicious!

  15. Vanessa says:

    Hello Jo!
    Can you dehydrate the peptise in the oven once soaked? If so at what temp and for how long?
    Looking forward to trying these

  16. Rebecca says:

    Do you think it’s possible to sub the pepitas with sunflower seeds instead?

  17. Kristy says:

    I made these yesterday and ate my first one with honey and butter today… Its the best thing I’ve eaten that’s kinda bread like in 2yrs!! YAY!! Thanks Jo! You rock!

  18. Danica says:

    Hi Jo, thanks for posting this recipe I’m looking forward to trying it! My son is allergic to dairy and coconut, do you have any suggestions for which oil might sub best for coconut oil and ghee?

  19. Amanda says:

    H Jo – should the coconut oil or butter be soft/room temp? We’re in Canberra so our coconut oil is still rock solid in the jar. Wondering whether to warm it a bit just to soften or can I melt it completely?
    – Amanda

  20. Angela says:

    I just made these, combining stage probably needs a little longer to be thorough, as eating them there are a few ‘dry’ parts to the cooked muffin, or maybe add a little more oil/butter.

  21. Jenny says:

    Really nice! Didn’t have pepitas (never seen them here in the U.K.) so did 50% almonds, 50% mixed seeds & it worked well! Kids I care for had them for lunch with pesto, ham & salad veg.

  22. Julia says:

    Hi Jo, what’s the soup in the photo? Do you have a recipe for it on your blog? Looks yum πŸ™‚

  23. Joy says:

    Nice and fluffy using whipped aquafaba to replace the eggs!!! I will try half sunflower half pepita next time. Might add some dairy free cheese and use less salt too. Thanks Jo!! I’d love if you added a note about being able to use whipped aquafaba 😊😊

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