Layer zucchini batter and cream cheese filling together to make cream cheese zucchini muffins. These super soft and moist muffins are deliciously spiced with cinnamon and taste wonderful with a crunchy coarse sugar topping.
- 1 and 1/2 cups (188g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup (120ml) canola or vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/4 cups (about 175g) shredded zucchini (1 medium zucchini, no need to blot dry)
- optional: coarse sugar for topping
- 5 ounces (140g) block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons (36g) granulated sugar
- Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C). Spray a 12-count muffin pan with nonstick spray or line with cupcake liners. This recipe yields about 10 muffins.
- Make the zucchini batter: Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg together in a large bowl. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk the oil, brown sugar, granulated sugar, egg, and vanilla extract together. Whisk in the zucchini. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk or stir until just combined. Avoid over-mixing.
- Make the cream cheese filling: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese in a medium bowl on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy. Beat in the egg yolk, vanilla extract, and sugar until combined.
- Spoon 1 heaping Tablespoon of zucchini muffin batter into the muffin cups. Layer with 1 Tablespoon of cream cheese filling, then another heaping Tablespoon of muffin batter– or however much batter is needed to fill the cups all the way to the top. Some cream cheese filling can poke out of the top or on the sides. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, if desired.
- Bake for 5 minutes 425°F (218°C) then, keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce heat to 350°F (177°C)* and continue baking for another 15-17 minutes. The total time these muffins should be in the oven is around 20-22 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes in the pan before serving.
- Cover leftover muffins tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Freezing Instructions: For longer storage, freeze the muffins for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then heat up in the microwave if desired.
- Zucchini: I do not peel the zucchini before shredding, but you certainly can if you’d like.
- Variations or Doubling the Recipe: For other flavor ideas, turning this into a loaf, or doubling the recipe, see Possible Variations above.
- Why the initial high oven temperature? Like I do for most muffin recipes, bake the muffins for 5 minutes at a very hot temperature. Then, keeping the muffins in the oven, switch to a lower temperature for the remaining bake time. This initial high temperature will quickly lift the muffin tops so they’re extra high, then the centers will bake during the lower temperature bake time. This trick makes beautiful bakery-style muffins every time.
Keywords: cream cheese zucchini muffins