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Zucchini-Lemon Muffins

It feels like zucchini is EVERYWHERE this time of year.  Whether it's coming from your own garden, the farmer's market, or a CSA-style veggie box, zucchini is the garden gift that just keeps on giving.  

Don't let your zucchini be like those tacky sweaters that Aunt Alice gives you every year for Christmas, though - forgotten and stuffed in a drawer somewhere.  There are a surprising number of ways to cook this prolific summer vegetable, from grilled and sauteed to pureed in soups.

One of my favorite ways to enjoy zucchini is in baked goods - because who doesn't like cakes, muffins, and breads?  Recently I baked a batch of these Zucchini-Lemon Muffins from Cooking Light.  I'd bought a veggie box through a local organic food provider here in Alabama -- Freshfully -- and of course there were a couple of GIANT zucchinis in the box.  This recipe calls for one cup of grated zucchini, plus a little sugar, nutmeg, and lemon rind for added flavor.  No nutmeg in the pantry, but cinnamon made a good substitute in a pinch.  I added some extra lemon juice as well.

So how'd they turn out?  It seems that our harshest food critic, my 3.5-year-old daughter, LOVED these muffins!  They've been a great go-to food for breakfast or after-school snacks.  Even better, we know that she's getting extra vegetables in her diet, which can be a challenge when her favorite foods consist of yogurt, strawberries, ketchup, peanuts, and oh yes - more strawberries and yogurt.

Want more zucchini inspirations?  Check out these recipe galleries:

5 Zucchini Surprises

Superfood: Zucchini

7 Ways With Zucchini