This chocolate zucchini cake recipe doesn’t use eggs but makes a cake that is so moist and delicious. Nobody would ever guess there is zucchini in it unless you tell them. Add the chocolate cream cheese frosting to take it to the next level!
If you are looking for big chocolate flavor in a super moist cake, you are in the right place. The secret ingredient is shredded zucchini, and it is likely to become one of your all-time favorite zucchini recipes.
When it is zucchini season, zucchini plants have a way of going gang busters. All of the squash come on at once, and it is nearly impossible to keep up with it.
We aren’t growing any squash this year, but we get some in our CSA boxes and more from family. While we love things like parmesan roasted zucchini, a lot of them end up in desserts as well.
Adding shredded zucchini lends plenty of moisture to this rich chocolate cake in the same way it keeps zucchini bread tender. Add some chocolate cream cheese frosting, and it is a chocolate lovers’ dream come true!
What Makes This Fudgy Chocolate Zucchini Cake so Good?
Sometimes, making a cake from scratch can be intimidating, but this cake doesn’t have to be. It uses oil instead of butter, so you don’t have to wait for your ingredients to come to room temperature.
You can use vegetable oil, canola oil, avocado oil, or any neutral flavored oil you have on hand. Put it in a large bowl and stir in some white sugar and vanilla extract.
Now add flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. When you stir it together, it will seem like something is wrong.
It will be very dry, not at all like a normal cake batter. Don’t worry, just keep on going.
Now shred the zucchini. You can use a food processor or a box grater.
You will want to pack the shredded zucchini into the measuring cup and be sure to add some of that juice. Stir it into the flour mixture.
As the squash releases some of its juices, a thick batter should form. Make sure to use fresh zucchini so you get the most moisture.
If your batter looks thicker than the pictures, you can stir in a couple of teaspoons of water. It really is that easy, no eggs, no butter, no mixers… just a bowl, a lot of zucchini, and some simple ingredients.
The Chocolate Frosting
The perfect chocolate cake needs a creamy chocolate frosting. This cream cheese version was the perfect foil for the rich chocolate cake.
The flavors don’t compete. They just work together to make the perfect smooth and creamy frosting.
I used a standard cocoa powder, but you could use a dutched or dark cocoa powder if you want a darker color frosting.
More Great Zucchini Dessert Recipes
if you like apple crisp, you are going to love zapple crisp! It tastes just like an apple, but it is really made from zucchini, oats, cinnamon, brown sugar, and more.
Or make a mock apple pie with zucchini. It might just be the best dutch apple pie you’ve ever had. Who knew zucchini were so good at pretending to be apples?
You can also make mock strawberry jam with zucchini and pineapple. It is a fun spread to put on toast or stir some into your morning oatmeal.
If Bundt cakes are more your style, try making a chocolate zucchini Bundt cake. It is alike chocolate zucchini bread but in a prettier form thanks to a pretty Bundt pan!
Did you make this great recipe? Please leave a review in the recipe card below!
Chocolate Zucchini Cake With Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1½ cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1⅔ cups all purpose flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded zucchini packed
Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
- ½ cup butter soft
- 8 oz. cream cheese soft
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 to 2 Tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together oil, sugar and vanilla.
- Add flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine. The mixture will look dry at this point.
- Finely shred zucchini, pack it into a measuring cup, being sure to add some of the liquid.
- Stir the zucchini into the dry ingredients. As it releases its moisture, it should start to form a thick cake batter. (If your zucchini was dry, you may want to add a teaspoon or two of water to help it form a batter.)
- Pour batter into prepared baking pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the center bounces back when lightly touched with a finger.
- Allow to cool before frosting.
- To make the chocolate cream cheese frosting, beat the butter and cream cheese together until the mixture is smooth and airy.
- Add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder and vanilla, mixing until combined.
- Stir in a Tablespoon of milk. Add more milk if necessary to get the desired texture.
- Spread over cooled cake. Lightly cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Serve slightly chilled or at room temperature.