Chocolate Zucchini Cake Recipe

chocolate zucchini cake

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Chocolate Zucchini Cake is my absolute favorite way to use the abundance of zucchini that comes from our summer garden! I first received this chocolate zucchini cake recipe from a good friend after having it at her mom’s house. It is a rich and moist cake that doesn’t need any toppings. It can stand alone (my favorite!), but as with all chocolate cakes, adding ice cream or whipped cream is also delicious!

If you are looking for other zucchini recipes, check out our Lemon Zucchini Bread, Chocolate Zucchini Cake, Zucchini Chicken Burgers and our Cheesy Baked Zucchini Casserole.

chocolate zucchini cake

You know how when you go look at the garden and think to yourself that you’ll give that zucchini an extra day, then you go out literally 5 minutes later, it’s the size of a newborn baby? Well, this recipe works well with those zucchini babies as I called them as a child. It also works well with smaller zucchini too!

How to Make a Perfect Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Preheat the oven to 325. Then, start mixing the dry ingredients together; flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Stir with a fork to mix, and set that bowl aside.

Find a kid to go pick and shred a zucchini

Next, grate the zucchini. I do this by hand with a grater that fits on top of a glass bowl. This is easy enough that I usually have my kids do that step. You can also put the zucchini into a food processor until shredded as well. I do not cut out the seeds for this recipe, they can be added directly into the batter and help to make the cake moist. I always add extra zucchini into my batter too. This adds a few minutes to your bake time, but keeps the cake super moist. Once the (giant) zucchini is grated, set it aside until the batter is made.

shredded zucchini

shredded zucchini

You can also watch Jackson talk about how to pick zucchini plants on his Youtube channel below:

Mix your Ingredients

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, then add your oil. After that is incorporated, add the sugar. Then add the eggs and vanilla until well blended. Next, this recipe calls for sour milk. Now, most of us don’t stock sour milk at least on purpose! But it is very easy to create. Just mix together 1 tablespoon of lemon juice (or vinegar) into the half cup of milk and stir. Now the sour milk is made and ready to add to the rest of the wet ingredients.

Once they are all well mixed,  I slowly add the dry ingredients into the batter. Make sure to stir the sides of the pan well as you mix. Overall, the batter will be a little thicker than normal. This is because zucchini is naturally high in water content. Since the shredded zucchini has been sitting for a few minutes, you will notice that some water has settled onto the bottom of the jar. You can squeeze out the extra moisture if you are in a rush, but I just let it settle. Add the zucchini and fold into the batter with a rubber spatula.

Bake the Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Pour the fully combined batter into a lightly greased 9×13 glass pan and smooth out the batter with a rubber spatula. I always sprinkle a generous amount of chocolate chips on the top of the batter. I never measure this, but add chocolate chips until the entire cake is well coated! This is not a diet cake after all, so there is no reason to start skimping at this point!

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

This moist, rich chocolate zucchini cake will not disappoint!

15 minPrep Time

45 minCook Time

1 hrTotal Time

Yields 20


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  • 1/2 cup soft butter
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sour milk
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 2 cup shreddec zucchini
  • 1/2 bag chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the Oven to 325
  2. Combine your dry ingredients, flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cloves
  3. Stir with a fork to combine, set aside
  4. Shred zucchini, set aside
  5. Cream softened butter in a large mixing bowl
  6. Add Canola Oil to butter and mix well
  7. Add Sugar and mix until smooth
  8. Add 2 eggs and vanilla
  9. Make sour milk by combining 1/2 cup milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice, stirring well
  10. Add sour milk and cream until smooth
  11. Slowly add dry mixture to wet ingredients, mixing well and scraping the sides
  12. Once well mixed, stir in shredded zucchini with a rubber spatula, leaving zucchini water out
  13. Pour into a greased 9x13 glass pan
  14. Sprinkle with a generous portion of chocolate chips
  15. Bake at 325 for 45 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean
Recipe Type: Dessert

baking chocolate zucchini cake

Now the chocolate zucchini cake is ready for the oven! Put your masterpiece into the preheated oven for 45 minutes, checking at 40 minutes. Remember, if you, like me, add extra zucchini, it may take a few extra minutes in the oven. Chocolate Zucchini Cake is ready when you shake the pan and it does not jiggle and when a toothpick inserted in the middle come out clean. Let it cool before cutting or serve it warm. This chocolate zucchini cake will not disappoint!

chocolate zucchini cake chocolate zucchini cake chocolate zucchini cake

If you’re still wondering what to do with the rest of the giant zucchini that has taken over your summer garden, check out Grandma’s Baked Zucchini Casserole.

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