1. In a bowl, mix flour with sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
2. In another bowl, combine applesauce, egg, oil, and almond extract. Beat to blend, then add flour mixture and stir until evenly moistened.
3. Stir in chocolate chips.
4. Spoon the chocolate batter into 12 oiled or paper-lined muffin cups (2 1/2 to 2 3/4 in. wide).
5. Bake in a 350° oven until muffins just begin to pull from pan sides and centers spring back when lightly pressed, about 20 minutes.
6. Cool muffins in pan about 5 minutes, then turn out onto racks. Serve warm or cool.