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Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips

I was in the mood to bake a Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips this past Friday for the sole reason that I was just craving a really good chocolate cake! Probably not one of the best decisions I ever made and I ended up eating way too much, but damn people—it was GOOD! I felt like Miranda Hobbes from that Sex and the City episode where she’s obsessed with eating sweets and ends up baking a chocolate cake. Then—my favorite part—she leaves a voicemail on Carrie’s answering machine that said “Your good friend has just taken a piece of cake out of the garbage and eaten it. You will probably need this information when you check me into the Betty Crocker Clinic.” Thankfully, it didn’t get that far for me, but it was close!

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips - Overhead angles shot of a Chocolate Zucchini Cake with a slice taken out and two gold forks placed next to it | Image and Copyright Policy: © Beyond the Butter, LLC
Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips - Photo of Chocolate Zucchini Cake on a white cake stand | Image and Copyright Policy: © Beyond the Butter, LLC
Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips - Overhead angled shot of a Chocolate Zucchini Cake with a slice taken out | Image and Copyright Policy: © Beyond the Butter, LLC

what’s in a chocolate zucchini cake?

Your typically chocolate zucchini cake has your usual cake ingredients like flour, sugar, oil, eggs, milk, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and a little cinnamon. And then the key ingredient—ZUCCHINI!

This particular cake recipe includes the additional ingredient of chocolate chips to give it a little extra chocolate punch! This cake is moist, rich, and sweet, but not overkill sweet (which I like A LOT), and it’s slightly fudgy! Top it off, if you’d like, with the devilishly good chocolate frosting (adapted from “The Perfect Cake” book from America’s Test Kitchen) that I’ve included below in the recipe section. With all this chocolate, you’ll be in chocolate heaven!

baking tip

I used 3, 6″ x 2″ cake pans (alternatively you can use a 10″ tube pan, a 9″x13″ pan, or a bundt cake pan) to bake this cake. To retain some of the moisture from the cake, cool them upside down on a cooling rack still in their cake pans. This also helps with giving the cake a flat surface versus that dome shape we all love 😉 If you’re not going to be frosting the cake immediately after cooling it, you can flip them back over and store them in the cake pans tightly wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips - Overhead angled shot of a Chocolate Zucchini Cake | Image and Copyright Policy: © Beyond the Butter, LLC
Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips - Overhead photo of Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips | Image and Copyright Policy: © Beyond the Butter, LLC

Essential Baking Tools for Making the Perfect Cake

OXO Good Grips 11 Pound Stainless Steel Food Scale with Pull-Out Display
Nordic Ware 43174 3 Piece Baker’s Delight Set, Aluminum
Good Cook Medium Grater Zester
OXO Good Grips Multi-purpose Stainless Steel Scraper & Chopper
Nordic Ware Ultimate Bundt Cleaning Tool
Nordicware 3.5 Cup Geo Bundtlette Pan
Nordic Ware Platinum Collection Anniversary Bundtlette Pan
Ateco 1325 2-Pack Icing Spreaders
Plastic Spatula Palette Knives
Martha Stewart Laser-Cut Stencils – Otomi
Wilton Decorating Open Star Icing Tip #8B
Wilton Decorating Open Star Icing Tip #6B
Wilton Decorating Open Star Icing Tip #4B
GIR Get it Right Mini Stainless Steel Whisk, 8″
Wilton Icing Spatula Set for Baking, 3-Piece – 13 and 9-Inch Angled and 11-Inch Straight Spatulas
Nordic Ware Freshly Baked Square Cake Pan, 9″, Metallic
Wilton Aluminum 8-Inch Round Cake Pan Set, Multipack of 2
USA Pan Bakeware Square Cake Pan, 8 inch, Nonstick & Quick Release Coating, Made in the USA from Aluminized Steel
Wilton Master Decorating Tip Set, 55-Piece decorating tips, Cake Decorating Supplies
Wilton Color Right Performance Coloring System
Bob’s Red Mill Super Fine Almond Flour, 16 oz.
Nordic Ware Heritage Bundt® Pan
Wilton Springform Cake Pan Set, 3-Piece
KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red
Pouring Chute
Anchor Hocking 10pc Glass Mixing Bowl Set
Joseph Joseph Shake-It Self-Tapping Sieve, Large
Wilton Aluminum Round Cake Pan Set, 6″ x 2″ in, (4-Pack)
Wilton 12-cup Muffin Pan
The Smart Baker Half Sheet 13 x 18 inches Perfect Parchment Paper – Pre-Cut Parchment Paper Baking Sheets
Wilton 2-Piece Bake Even Strip Set
(Set of 100) Non-Stick Round Parchment Paper 6 Inch Diameter, Baking Paper Liners for Round Cake Pans Circle
The Perfect Cake: Your Ultimate Guide to Classic, Modern, and Whimsical Cakes
Black & Decker MX3000W 250-Watt Hand Mixer
Cake Carrier by Sweet Course Official 12″ Large Round Container
J.A. Henckels International Forged Synergy 8-Inch Bread Knife
Cakewalk 6466 Melamine Cake Stand
Wilton Angel Food Tube Cake Pan, 10-Inch
Cooling Rack Stainless Steel Half size – Commercial Grade Steel 11.5″ x 16.5″ | 1 Piece | Cooking Rack Designed To Fit Perfectly Into Baking Half Sheet Pan | Only From Indigo True Company
Fox Run 4254 Kitchen Timer with Magnet 55-Minute
Baker’s Joy Cake Pan Spray
Nordic Ware 9″ x 13″ Rectangular Cake Pan with Lid, Silver

can you taste the zucchini in the cake?

Nope. Not at all! I’m serious! The only reason zucchini is used in this chocolate zucchini cake with chocolate chips recipe is to give it that extra level of moistness! Maybe to some it seems silly to include an ingredient that you never even taste just to give it moisture, but can you honestly taste any of the other ingredient that helps make a cake moist? And you can look at using zucchini as a healthy option to baking a cake with all the anti-oxidants and vitamins—see chocolate cake IS good for you! 🙂

Print

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips

  • Author: Jennifer
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes (allow 10 minutes for cooling)
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 1, 3 layer Chocolate Zucchini Cake 1x
  • Category: Cakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Description

This Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips recipe is SOOO moist, rich, and sweet, it will knock your sweet socks clean off!


Scale

Ingredients

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips

  • 1/4 cup (or 4 Tbsp.) Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup Shortening
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 cup Sour Milk (see Notes below if you don’t have any sour milk)
  • 2 1/2 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 4 tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa
  • 2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 2 cups Shredded Zucchini (do NOT drain the liquid from the shredded zucchini)
  • 6 oz. Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Chocolate Frosting

  • 1 1/4 lbs (5 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 2 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 cups Unsweetened Cocoa
  • 1/8 tsp. Salt
  • 1 cup Light Corn Syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 lb. Chocolate, melted and cooled

Instructions

Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Chocolate Chips

  1. Align your oven rack to the 2nd level position and pre-heat your oven to 325º.
  2. Spray your cake pans with a flour-based baking spray, place a 6″ diameter circle of parchment paper in each pan, and respray the bottom with the flour-based spray. Alternatively, you can grease the pans with butter and coat in flour, but it’s important to still add in the parchment paper circles (it helps to release the cake from the pan).
  3. If you have the Wilton Baking Strips, make sure they are wetted down and fitted to your pans. (Optional step)
  4. In a separate bowl, sift or whisk together the flour, cocoa, and baking soda. Set aside.
  5. Using your hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium- to medium-high speed, cream the butter, shortening, oil, and sugar together.
  6. Add in the egg, vanilla, and sour milk, mixing until well-blended.
  7. Switching your mixer speed to low, add in the dry ingredients a little at a time.
  8. Mix in the zucchini and the chocolate chips until combined.
  9. Pour the cake batter in only 1/2 way full, then place in the oven to bake for 50 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean from the center of the cake.

Chocolate Frosting

  1. Using your hand-mixer or stand up mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (alternatively you can use the food processor – America’s Test Kitchen recommendation) on medium- to medium-high speed, mix the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt until well-blended. Scrap down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  2. Add in the corn syrup and vanilla until just combined.
  3. Add in the melted and cooled chocolate until smooth and fully combined.
  4. Frost your cake once it’s completely cooled.

Notes

  • To make sour milk, you can add 1 1/2 tsp of lemon juice to your 1/2 cup of milk. Mix it up and let it sit for a minute before adding it into your mixing bowl.
  • If you have the Wilton Baking Strips, make sure they are wetted down and fitted to your pans. See next note below for why this step is an optional one.
  • I used 3, 6″ x 2″ cake pans (alternatively you can use 2 cupcake tins – also see video on How to Create a Sprinkled Heart on a Cupcake), 10″ tube pan, a 9″x13″ pan, or a bundt cake pan) to bake this cake.
  • To retain some of the moisture from the cake, cool them upside down on a cooling rack still in their cake pans. This also helps with giving the cake a flat surface versus that dome shape we all love 😉
  • If you’re not going to be frosting the cake after cooling it, you can store them in the cake pans tightly wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator.
  • Cake recipe is adapted from the 2001, “A Taste of Bedminster Elementary” Cookbook.
  • Frosting recipe is adapted from “The Perfect Cake” book by America’s Test Kitchen.

Keywords: chocolate zucchini cake, cake, chocolate cake, zucchini cake, chocolate zucchini cake, how to make chocolate zucchini cake, chocolate chips, chocolate zucchini cake with chocolate chips

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Beverly Kaye
    July 3, 2019 at 6:13 PM

    But you left out the gold on the frosting! Why are you holding out on us?

    • Reply
      Jennifer
      July 3, 2019 at 9:29 PM

      Gah, Beverly, I’m so sorry! I thought I mentioned it in the blog post. It’s gold dust from Truly Mad Plastics. It’s a very small jar, but a little goes a loooong way! You can apply it using a small craft brush and either clear vanilla extract or vodka.

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