These Sweet Kale Muffins are tender, moist and so delicious. Made with blended kale, applesauce, whole wheat flour, a little maple syrup or honey and studded with optional chocolate chips, these muffins are a great way to get some extra veggies into your diet! Done baking in 20 minutes and perfect as a healthy breakfast or hearty snack option.

A sweet kale muffin unwrapped and a bite taken out of it. There are more muffins blurred in the background, chocolate chips and kale scattered around the muffin.

If you are a regular here on The Natural Nurturer, you probably know my veggie-loaded muffins are what I am known for. My Oatmeal Green Smoothie Muffins put me on the map in the recipe world and is how so many of you found your way to me and made you a believer in veggie-loading. But I have gone on to create many, many veggie packed muffins that are regulars in your kitchen (try my One-Bowl Oatmeal Carrot Muffins or Veggie-Loaded Chocolate Muffins) and keep coming up with more (surprisingly).

These Sweet Kale Muffins are my latest and greatest veggie-loaded baked good. Inspired by the Green Smoothie Muffins you all know and love, these muffins are a delicious way to enjoy some leafy greens. Boosting 2 cups of blended kale, these fluffy and moist muffins are naturally sweetened with applesauce and a little maple syrup or honey. The chocolate chips are optional, but highly recommended, as this mom and former preschool teacher can tell you….chocolate makes every muffin a little more appealing to any veggie-iffy eater. I made these muffins with whole wheat flour, but you can easily sub that with a 1:1 gluten free flour blend if you need a gluten free option. Oh, and they are dairy-free! So if you need that, I’ve got you covered!

Ingredients for sweet kale muffins in bowls on a white marble table.

How to make these muffins: step-by-step guide

Kale and wet ingredients for kale muffins in a blender before blending.
In your blender, combine kale, eggs, maple syrup/ honey, applesauce, oil, and vanilla.
Blended wet ingredients for kale muffins in a blender.
Blend until mixture is smooth and there are no leafy pieces of kale left. About 30-60 seconds.
Dry ingredients for kale muffins in a bowl before being mixed together. There is a whisk sitting next to the bowl and a blender with the pureed wet ingredients is in the corner of the image.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. 
Dry ingredients for kale muffins in a bowl after being mixed together. There is a whisk sitting in the bowl and a blender with the pureed wet ingredients is in the corner of the image.
Whisk together.
The wet ingredients for kale muffins being poured from a blender into a bowl of dry ingredients.
Pour in the contents of the blender.
A person using a whisk to mix together the wet and dry ingredients for kale muffins in a bowl.
Mix to combine. Do not over mix, as this can result in dense muffins.
A person pouring chocolate chips from a white bowl into the batter for sweet kale muffins. There is a white spatula in the bowl with the batter.
Fold in chocolate chips.
A person using a scoop to portion out the batter for kale muffins into a lined muffin tin.
Portion batter into prepared muffin tin, filling about ¾ of the way.
Sweet kale muffins in a muffin tin before baking
Top with additional chocolate chips, if desired.
Sweet kale muffins in a muffin tin after baking.
Bake until the tops of the muffins are just starting to turn golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. If you have a kitchen thermometer, cook until the muffins have an internal temperature of 200℉. This will ensure they are cooked through, but not overcooked.

Suggested adaptations

  • Use raisins instead of chocolate chips. Both make these already tasty muffins even better!
  • Omit chocolate chips all together. We find these muffins to be sweet enough on their own.
  • Replace the applesauce with mashed banana if you prefer that flavor.
  • Boost the nutrition: You could also stir in 2 to 4 tablespoons of nutritious add-ins like hemp seeds, chia seeds, or ground flax seeds.
  • Make them gluten free: Use a cup-for-cup style gluten free flour mix instead of the whole wheat flour.
  • Need egg-free? I haven’t tested it, but I think using a common egg-replacer such a flax “egg” would work in this recipe.
  • Use spinach instead of kale.
  • Use frozen kale instead of fresh. Thaw first before adding the kale to the blender. If kale has wilted significantly during freezing, reduce the amount of kale to 1 cup.

Got leftover kale? Try turning into these delicious, easy, and savory Oven Baked Parmesan Kale Chips and keep the veggie-loading going!

How to store these muffins

These muffins can hang out on your counter for a day, but if you plan to enjoy them over several days pop them in the fridge! Keeping them in an airtight container in your refrigerator will help to keep these moist muffins fresh longer and prevent molding.

You can also freeze these kale muffins for up to 2 months when stored in an air-tight freezer safe container. I like to thaw on the countertop overnight or by zapping one in the microwave for 15-30 seconds.

Baked kale muffins in a muffin tin on a table. There are chocolate chips scattered around the tin on the table.

Other veggie-loaded muffin recipes you will adore

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Three sweet kale muffins stacked on top of one another on a white table. There are blurred muffins in the background and chocolate chips and kale pieces scattered around the table.
Sweet Kale Muffins in a baking tray
5 from 17 votes

Sweet Kale Muffins

Yield: 12 muffins
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Cuisine: American
Course: Breakfast
These Sweet Kale Muffins are tender, moist and so delicious. Made with blended kale, applesauce, whole wheat flour, a little maple syrup or honey and studded with optional chocolate chips, these muffins are a great way to these muffins a great way to get some extra veggies into your diet! Done baking in under 20 minutes and perfect as a healthy breakfast or hearty snack option.

Ingredients
 

  • 2 large eggs, can sub flax eggs for egg-free
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 cups loosely packed kale, fibrous ribs removed
  • ¼ cup avocado oil, or olive oil
  • cup maple syrup or honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1⅓ cups whole wheat flour, can sub 1:1 gluten free flour mix, if needed
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup chocolate chips, or to taste plus extra for topping.

Equipment

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 375 ℉. Grease a muffin tin with oil or line with liners. Set aside.
  • In your blender, combine kale, eggs, maple syrup/ honey, applesauce, oil, and vanilla.
    Kale and wet ingredients for kale muffins in a blender before blending.
  • Blend until mixture is smooth and there are no leafy pieces of kale left. About 30-60 seconds.
    Blended wet ingredients for kale muffins in a blender.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
    Dry ingredients for kale muffins in a bowl before being mixed together. There is a whisk sitting next to the bowl and a blender with the pureed wet ingredients is in the corner of the image.
  • Pour in the contents of the blender and mix to combine. Do not over mix, as this can result in dense muffins.
    The wet ingredients for kale muffins being poured from a blender into a bowl of dry ingredients.
  • Fold in chocolate chips.
  • Portion batter into prepared muffin tin, filling about ¾ of the way. Top with additional chocolate chips, if desired.
    A person using a scoop to portion out the batter for kale muffins into a lined muffin tin.
  • Bake until the tops of the muffins are just starting to turn golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. If you have a kitchen thermometer, cook until the muffins have an internal temperature of 200℉. This will ensure they are cooked through, but not overcooked.
    Sweet kale muffins in a muffin tin after baking.
  • Let cool in pan for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. I find that every muffin liner is a bit different, so if you muffins are sticking to your liners, let them cool completely or chill them in the fridge for a bit and they should release a bit easier.
    Let cool completely and store leftovers in an air-tight container in fridge for up 5 days or in your freezer for about 2 months.
Serving: 1muffin, Calories: 155kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 0.003g, Cholesterol: 31mg, Sodium: 197mg, Potassium: 146mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 1168IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 72mg, Iron: 1mg