The best chocolate cake you could ever make! As a bonus, you get to use up zucchini and hide vegetables! Your kids will never know this cake has zucchini!
This Zucchini Chocolate Cake is so moist and delicious, and the zucchini absolutely disappears in it! There is no hint of green and no texture of zucchini, so nobody would ever know (but you!)
In the fall, we typically end up with a lot of zucchini. Either we’ve grown it ourselves, or somebody shows up to church with all their excess zucchini and just leaves a big box of it for anyone to take.
And while my family would be happy if I made Fried Zucchini Planks every day of the year, it’s good to switch things up!
This cake is based on a recipe from Sally’s Baking Recipes (or Sally’s Baking Addiction), but I’ve cut the recipe in half to make just an 8×8 pan. If you have lots of zucchini or want to make a double-layer cake, you’ll want to double this recipe and put it in a 9×13 pan or two round cake pans. She also puts chocolate chips in her cake, but I prefer it without so the texture is smooth. (When I made it with chocolate chips, I kept wondering what the hard parts were in the cake! I’m a little slow sometimes :))
Enough talking. Let’s make this cake!
Ingredients for Zucchini Chocolate Cake
Light brown sugar
How to Make Zucchini Chocolate Cake
The first thing I’d do is shred your zucchini and have it ready. If you have a really big zucchini that has lots of big seeds in the middle, I’d just use the outside part of the zucchini. We want to the zucchini to be absolutely unnoticeable in the cake, and big seeds would definitely raise some eyebrows!
A food processor with a grating blade is ideal for grating your zucchini quickly. But you can also do it by hand if necessary. You’ll want about 1 1/2 cups of grated zucchini.
Once you grate the zucchini, press it lightly with paper towels or napkins, just to take a bit of excess moisture out. Don’t press hard or squeeze, though, or you’ll get way too much liquid out, and we want that moisture for the cake.
Now get a big bowl and add your oil, granulated sugar and brown sugar together. Mix by hand with a wooden spoon, or with a hand-mixer, or in a stand mixer for about 30 seconds.
Then add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla and mix well.
Now it’s time to add the dry ingredients. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and slowly mix until all the flour is incorporated.
Add your shredded zucchini and fold in until evenly distributed throughout the batter.
Grease your baking pan(s) and pour in your batter. (If you are making a 2-layer cake, I recommend cutting out parchment circles to put at the bottom of your cake pans so you can easily remove your cake after baking).
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-32 minutes until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs.
Cool and frost with your favorite chocolate frosting!
Time to dig in!
This recipe adapted from Chocolate Zucchini Cake on Sally’s Baking Recipes
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 3 tablespoons sour cream, room temperature
- 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened natural cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups shredded zucchini, lightly blotted
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease and flour an 8x8" pan.
- Add the vegetalbe oil, granulated sugar, and light brown sugar to a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer. Blend by hand or with the batter attachment of the stand mixer for about 30 seconds.
- Add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla and mix well.
- Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix slowly until all the flour has been incorporated.
- Slowly mix or fold in the shredded zucchini until evenly distributed throughout the batter.
- Pour into your cake pan and bake for 25-32 minutes, until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs.
- Allow to cool completely, and then frost with your favorite chocolate frosting. You can get a recipe for chocolate frosting here.
If needing to use more zucchini or wanting to make a 2-layer cake or 9x13 cake, double the recipe. If using two round cake pans, bake for the same amount of time (25-32 minutes). If baking a 9x13 cake, bake for 45 minutes. Be sure to test with a toothpick or knife to make sure it's done.