Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes with Ganache Frosting

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These Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes are super moist, fluffy, and richly chocolatey. The velvety ganache frosting is perfect, while zucchini lends moisture and some veggie power!

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Ingredients

Cupcake Batter:
1 cups all purpose flour
1¼ cups granulated sugar
¼ cup + 2 TB unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp instant coffee granules (decaf is fine)
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp table salt
2 large eggs
½ cup + 2 TB canola oil
1½ cups finely grated zucchini, loosely packed
1 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips (mini’s are best, as they melt into the cake well)

Orange-Ganache Frosting:
4½ oz semi sweet chocolate morsels
½ cup heavy cream
2 tsp orange extract
Optional: shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened) for garnish

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Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350F, with rack on lower middle position. Line or grease a standard muffin pan. Set aside.

2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, coffee granules, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Whisk to combine well.

3. In a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Add oil, zucchini, and mini chocolate chips. Stir to combine well.

4. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold together the flour mixture with the egg mixture. Fold gently just until no more dry streaks of flour remain; do not overmix. Bake 20-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few tender crumbs attached (be sure to test in a cake-only spot; cracked spots tend to be misleading, since melted chocolate chips sit in those cracks.) Cool cupcakes completely.

5. Meanwhile, make the Ganache: In a heavy saucepan, add chocolate morsels and heavy cream. Constantly stir on low heat until smooth and melted. Add orange extract and stir until combined. Remove from heat and let cool enough for ganache to thicken to a frost-able consistency. Frost as desired and sprinkle with shredded coconut.

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