Sneaky Leprechaun Chocolate Chip Muffins

I've been playing around with putting spinach in all kinds of things this month. As far as inexpensive, nutritious, natural dyes go, spinach is hard to beat. Plus there are few kids -- or adults -- who couldn't benefit from more leafy greens in their life.

These muffins were a big hit with my girls. Who doesn't love to come home from school (or work!) and find some nice warm muffins waiting for them? By this point in the month they expected some kind of green ingredient and correctly guessed spinach, but gobbled them up anyway.

While I don't advocate hiding ingredients as the primary way to get anyone to eat vegetables, I do think there is a place for it in that it can offer a positive experience that may make eaters more open to trying the hidden ingredient in a dish where it is not so hidden. Like this...

"Charlie, try the creamed spinach."

"I don't like spinach."

"Remember when you ate those spinach chocolate chip muffins? You liked those..."

If you have kids you know one bad experience with an ingredient can ruin in for months (or years).

But on positive experience can open the door to others.

This requires that you reveal the hidden ingredient, obviously, but you can choose to do this before -- or after -- it is eaten!

This is where the sneaky leprechaun comes in...

Sneaky Leprechaun Chocolate Chip Muffins

Makes 12

2 C spelt flour (sub AP or oat flour)

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/3 C Sucanat or coconut sugar

1 C applesauce

¾ cup packed baby spinach

2 TB grapeseed oil, plus more for pan if not using liners

¼ C soy or other plant milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ C mini chocolate chips (I liked Enjoy Life brand)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly oil a 12 cup muffin pan and place liners in each cup.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and Sucanat with a whisk in a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a blender combine the applesauce, spinach, oil, soy milk and vanilla extra. Blend until no spinach pieces are visible. The mixture should be light green!

Pour the contents of the blender into the mixing bowl and use a spatula to mix just until no dry ingredients are visible. Pour the chocolate chips in and mix lightly to distribute them evenly.

Use a large spoon or a 1 ½” ice cream scoop to fill each cup in the muffin pan about 2/3 full.

Bake in the oven for 20-24 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out dry. Gently remove from the pan and place on a cooling rack. (Or sample one warm. Delish!)

Hi there! 
I’m Jennifer Haubrich, wife, mother, certified natural food chef & health coach (AADP).


I help smart families re-chart their path to create a delicious, healthy lifestyle by including more plant-based foods in their diet.

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