Extra Moist Chocolate Zucchini Cake (video)

chocolate zucchini cake with chocolate buttercream

The best ever chocolate zucchini cake recipe! If you’ve never had zucchini cake before, you’re in for a very tasty surprise! This rich, chocolate cake is made with dark cocoa powder, melted chocolate and grated zucchini! The cake layers are not too sweet and well balanced. I frost the cake with my fluffy and creamy ‘Chocolate Buttercream’. If you have more zucchinis than you know what to do with, make this decadent cake! You’ll fall in love from the very first bite!

My Chocolate Zucchini Cake Video Tutorial

Watch my video for step-by-step instructions and all the details. Want to receive new recipe emails in your inbox? Make sure to subscribe to my website and my YouTube channel and turn on notifications!

Zucchini in Cake?!

If you’ve never heard of or tried zucchini cake, it’s time to change that! This chocolate zucchini is made with 2 cups of grated zucchini. I used green zucchini in my video recipe but you can also use yellow or even Mexican zucchini for this recipe. Just grate the zucchini using a medium grater and then add the zucchini to the finished cake batter. No need to peel it either! You won’t actually taste the zucchini in the cake but it transforms the cake completely! The zucchini hads incredible moisture to the cake and gives the cake an amazing texture like nothing else can.

Ingredients for Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Here are the main ingredients you’ll need to make this rich and moist chocolate cake recipe!

  • Zucchini: I recommend using green zucchini for best results. You can peel the zucchini or leave the peel on. Either way, you won’t be able to really taste the zucchini in the cake.
  • Eggs, Oil, Milk & Vanilla Extract: the wet ingredients you’ll need for the cake batter. Have the eggs and milk at room temperature for best results. I typically use canola oil since it’s very mild in flavor.
  • Sugar, Flour, Baking Soda, Baking Powder: the dry ingredients for the cake batter. Make sure to sift the flour into the batter for best results!
  • Instant Coffee: adding a little bit of coffee helps intensify the chocolate flavor! You won’t really taste the coffee but don’t forget to add it!
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips: using a combination of melted chocolate and cocoa powder makes the chocolate flavor extra intense! The chocolate also makes the cake layers more moist.
  • Cocoa Powder: try using Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder for a really intense chocolate flavor.
  • Unsalted Butter: for making the chocolate buttercream. Soften the butter at room temperature for about 30 minutes prior to using.
  • Confectioner’s Sugar: for making the buttercream frosting.
chocolate cake recipe with zucchini and chocolate frosting

How to Make Chocolate Zucchini Cake

You’ll love how easy and quick this chocolate cake is to make! First, start by preparing the chocolate zucchini cake layers. They need to cool completely before you can assemble the cake!

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F/177C and line two, 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper and spray the sides with baking spray. Wash the zucchini and grate into a large mixing bowl; no need to peel the zucchini.
  2. Next, prepare the cake batter. Into a large mixing bowl, add the eggs, oil, milk, sugar, extract and instant coffee. Using a hand mixer, whisk or stand mixer, mix the ingredients together for 3 to 4 minutes, until the eggs are well beaten. Melt the chocolate in the microwave or over a double boiler, then add into the cake batter and mix for 1 minute. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Sift the dry ingredients into the cake batter, then mix for about 1 minute, just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Watch my video recipe to see how it’s done!
  3. Next, fold in the grated zucchini using a spatula. Divide the cake batter evenly between the two pans. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cake layers from the oven and let them cool in the pans for about 15 minutes, then remove them onto a wire rack and cool completely. Once the cake layers are cooled, use a long serrated knife to split the layers in half.
  4. While the cake layers are cooling, prepare the chocolate buttercream.
zucchini cake with chocolate and chocolate frosting

Making the Chocolate Buttercream

The perfect complement to this chocolate zucchini cake is my fluffy and creamy Chocolate Buttercream recipe. This recipe has over 1 million views on YouTube!! You’ll love the fluffy texture and rich, chocolate flavor! The most important step to making this buttercream is whisking the butter well before adding the remaining ingredients. The butter needs to be almost white in color and very fluffy, then you can add the sugar, cocoa and extract.

  1. Place the softened (not melted!) butter into a stand mixer bowl and whisk on high speed for 7 to 8 minutes, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl often, until the butter is fluffy and white in color.
  2. Next, add in the melted chocolate and vanilla and mix again for a minute until the chocolate is incorporated.
  3. Next, add in the cocoa powder and confectioner’s sugar. Whisk on low speed first until the sugar is incorporated, then whisk on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes, until the buttercream is light and fluffy.
  • Want to try this recipe with a different frosting? Awesome! Try this cake with a chocolate version of my ‘French Buttercream’ by adding 1/2 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate chips at the end, along with 1 to 2 tablespoons cocoa powder. Or, try it with a chocolate version of my ‘Whipped Cream Frosting’. Just replace the sweetened condensed milk in the recipe with 1 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate.

Assembling the Zucchini Cake

To assemble the cake, first take a long, serrated knife and level the top of each cake layer, if needed. Spread a generous amount of the chocolate buttercream in between each cake layer. If desired, soak the cake layers very lightly with simple syrup or chocolate liqueur. If desired, frost the top and sides of the cake with frosting also. Keep the chocolate zucchini cake refrigerated if not serving the same day. It will stand in the refrigerator for up to 3 to 4 days.

More Recipes

Enjoyed this decadent cake recipe? Check out some of my other recipes you’re sure to enjoy!

  • German Chocolate Cake – the best chocolate coconut cake recipe, with a coconut pecan filling and chocolate buttercream!
  • Black Forest Cake – this chocolate cherry cake is so delicious, made with cream cheese frosting and fresh cherries!
  • Triple Chocolate Crepe Cake – 40 layers of chocolate! This epic and rich chocolate crepe cake is filled with chocolate cream!
  • Chocolate Cherry Mousse Cake – the best ever chocolate mousse cake, with fresh cherries and cherry liqueur!

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Chocolate Zucchini Cake video recipe

Extra Moist Chocolate Zucchini Cake Recipe (video)

1 hr 30 mins prep + 40 mins cook
16 servings
The best chocolate zucchini cake with chocolate buttercream! You won't taste the zucchini!

Ingredients 

For Chocolate Zucchini Cake:

  • 2 cups grated zucchini, about 1 large zucchini
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups white granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder

For Chocolate Buttercream:

  • 2 cups unsalted butter, softened at room temp
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 3 cups confectioner’s sugar

Instructions

Making Chocolate Zucchini Cake:

  • Preheat the oven to 350F/177C and line two, 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper and spray the sides with baking spray. Wash the zucchini and grate into a large mixing bowl; no need to peel the zucchini.
  • Next, prepare the cake batter. Into a large mixing bowl, add the eggs, oil, milk, sugar, extract and instant coffee. Using a hand mixer, whisk or stand mixer, mix the ingredients together for 3 to 4 minutes, until the eggs are well beaten. Melt the chocolate in the microwave or over a double boiler, then add into the cake batter and mix for 1 minute. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Sift the dry ingredients into the cake batter, then mix for about 1 minute, just until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Watch my video recipe to see how it’s done!
  • Next, fold in the grated zucchini using a spatula. Divide the cake batter evenly between the two pans. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the cake layers from the oven and let them cool in the pans for about 15 minutes, then remove them onto a wire rack and cool completely. Once the cake layers are cooled, use a long serrated knife to split the layers in half.

Making Chocolate Buttercream:

  • While the cake layers are cooling, prepare the chocolate buttercream. Place the softened (not melted!) butter into a stand mixer bowl and whisk on high speed for 7 to 8 minutes, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl often, until the butter is fluffy and white in color.
  • Next, add in the melted chocolate and vanilla and mix again for a minute until the chocolate is incorporated. Next, add in the cocoa powder and confectioner's sugar. Whisk on low speed first until the sugar is incorporated, then whisk on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes, until the buttercream is light and fluffy.

Assembling the Cake:

  • To assemble the cake, first level the top of each cake layer using a long, serrated knife, if needed. Add a generous amount of the chocolate buttercream in between each cake layer. If desired, frost the top and sides of the cake with frosting also. If desired, soak the cake layers very lightly with simple syrup or chocolate liqueur. Keep the cake refrigerated if not serving the same day. The cake will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 650kcal | Carbohydrates: 66g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 257mg | Potassium: 270mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 48g | Vitamin A: 842IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 3mg