Chocolate Zucchini Cake {Gluten Free}

zucchini cake

My daughter’s wedding took place on Saturday and I don’t think I’ve ever been this tired in my entire life. Happy, elated and grateful….but T I R E D. Those of you who have planned weddings for daughters before will be able to relate.  Those of you who have done more than ONE daughter’s wedding, I don’t know how you survived! Yesterday I took a 2 1/2 hour nap on the couch, which is unheard of for me! My body just shut down. After that I felt a little better physically but mentally I was still pretty wrung out.

I actually was considering making today a “Save My Sanity MONDAY” post because I just didn’t have it in me to put together anything that required much brain power. But then I remembered this Chocolate Zucchini Cake I made last weekend that was SO delicious and decided this would be the perfect post for today.

No bells and whistles, no fancy photography (I snapped a few photos with my phone)….but a cake that we ALL enjoyed…even the gluten-free crowd!  Adding zucchini to cakes and breads almost guarantees a MOIST finished product! If you haven’t tried it yet….you definitely need to!


zucchini cake


Chocolate Zucchini Cake

adapted from a recipe at Just A Pinch

Chocolate Zucchini Cake {Gluten Free}


  • 2 cups flour (I used Pamela's gluten-free baking mix)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda (omit if using a baking mix that already includes baking soda)
  • 1 tsp baking powder (omit if using a baking mix that already includes baking soda)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 cups grated zucchini
  • Frosting
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 - 2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13 inch baking pan.


zucchini cake

In a stand mixer, combine the eggs and oil.


zucchini cake

zucchini cake 4

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Turn the mixer on low and add the flour mixture to the eggs and oil a little at a time until well combined. Then add the grated zucchini and mix just until it is well distributed.


zucchini cake

Pour into the prepared pan.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes in the preheated oven, until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool cake completely before frosting.


zucchini cake 8

As you can see, my cake sunk quite a bit in the middle which is, unfortunately, typical when I use a gluten-free baking mix…BUT…I assure you…it was completely delicious despite it’s less-than-perfect presentation. It was incredibly moist and if you didn’t want to add the frosting you can enjoy it just the way it is! But the frosting IS a treat! :-)


zucchini cake

How to make the frosting: In a sauce pan, mix sugar and cocoa. Stir in milk, butter/margarine, corn syrup and salt. Heat to boiling, stirring frequently. Boil 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool for 45 minutes. Beat in vanilla and enough powdered sugar for spreading consistency.


zucchini cake



This cake was a huge hit with the whole family. If you find yourself with an abundance of zucchini this time of year, it’s a GREAT way to use some of it up!


What is your favorite recipe for utilizing zucchini?


Print Friendly
Share on Facebook0Tweet about this on Twitter7Pin on Pinterest2,273Google+0

Enjoy This Post? Never Miss Another!

Subscribe to Jillee's FREE email newsletter and receive more great tips and ideas!



  1. Patti's Paraphernalia says

    Great recipe!!! Am I blind, or is there no Pinterest logo to put it on my Pinterest???

    My favorite recipe for zucchini is Zucchini Lasagne! It’s especially for the great big ones that got too ripe.

    I peel the zucchini and remove the seeds (if it’s a big over-ripe one). Slice it into 1/4″ slices lengthwise. Layer the slices in a colander, salting each layer. Leave the colander in the sink, or in a bowl, for 30 – 45 minutes to remove some of the liquid. After draining and rinsing the zucchini slices, pat dry and use in your favorite Lasagne recipe instead of the lasagne noodles. I usually make my sauce a bit thicker as well, so that the juice of the zucchini doesn’t make it too runny. After baking allow the lasagne to sit for 15 minutes before serving.

    My family loves this, and the calorie count is much lower. I have served it to my kids’ teen-age friends who hate vegetables. They loved it and couldn’t believe there was zucchini in it! Of course I didn’t tell them until they were done eating! The recipe is also gluten free!

    Another way we love zucchini is Zucchini, Tomato, & Onion Parmesan. Peel & seed the zucchini, and cut into 3/4″ cubes. Peel & slice 1 onion. Cut several tomatoes into chunks. In a large skillet, saute the onion until just beginning to soften, in olive oil. Add zucchini cubes and saute until onions are soft…it is best to add salt and pepper while zucchini is cooking. Add in tomatoes and saute until they are hot. Take off the heat and sprinkle liberally with parmesan cheese. This is soooooo good!

    I’m glad you survived your daughter’s wedding! I had 3 daughters’ weddings to plan! One was in Atlanta, GA…and we live in Illinois! I had 3 months to get it all together and it turned out great! We found a wonderful place where we could have the wedding outdoors in a beautifully landscaped garden…and then the reception was inside at the same place immediately after the wedding! They did all the food and decorations, so it wasn’t very difficult at all. I really can’t imagine having a wedding at our home!!! That would send me over the cliff, I think!

  2. says

    Fried zucchini in prego, egg wash, and flour…although this is about to change this year since I have discovered Pinterest and have learned zucchini can be used in sweets tooツ

  3. Charpps says

    That is very similar to my Chocolate Zucchini Bread recipe. I use 2 cups of zucchini in my recipe, I add 1/2 chopped nutmeats

  4. Charpps says

    ….AND (somehow I got cut off) either pecans, walnuts or almonds. If the chocolate is not enough chocolate for you , I also add some mini chocolate chips. Before baking I sprinkle a cinnamon/sugar mixture to the top. Nice little crispy top to the bread after baking. This bread freezes well, too. I usually make a double batch.

  5. Mary says

    Jill, I know exactly how you feel! I have four daughters and they all were married within seven years. Two were within one month apart. I just pray my son does not marry an orphan! LOL!

  6. Carrie says

    This looks delicious! It’s so hard to find good desserts now with all the allergies running rampant in our family. We have a good confectioners sugar that uses tapioca starch instead of corn starch, but I’m not sure what would replace the corn syrup. What would you recommend?

  7. LB says

    Whoa – 2 CUPS of sugar?! That is insane. I wish there were a way to cut that down because it looks so delicious and I would love to try it.

    • Jeannette Shields says

      LB, think of how many people will be eating this…2 cups divided by X isn’t much in the long run.
      Jillee, I have a zuchinni chocolate cake recipe that takes unsweetened chocolate squares instead of cocoa.
      Here is a recipe from Taste of Home for Zuchinni Cupcakes
      3 eggs; 1 1/3 cups sugar; 1/2 cup canola oil; 1/2 cup orange juice; 1 teaspoon almond extract; 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour; 2 teaspoons baking powder; 1 teaspoon baking soda; 2 teaspoons cinnamon; 1 teaspoon salt; 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves; 1 1/2 cup shredded zuchinni
      Beat eggs, sugar, oil, juice and extract. Combine rest up to zuchinni and add in (not the zucchini) Now, add the zucchini. Fill paper lined cups 2/3 full. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes.
      1 cup brown sugar; 1/2 cup butter 1/4 cup 2% milk; 1 teaspoon vanilla extract; 1 1/2-2 cups confectioners’ sugar
      Combine sugar, butter and milk in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook and stir 2 min. or until thickened. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. When lukewarm, beat in sugar. Makes 1 1/2 -2 dozen
      *I enjoy your blog, but especially when you have recipes!:) *

  8. CTY says

    Looks really good. I make something similar as a skillet cake. Served it warm with ice cream.
    I had an abundance of zucchini this year– made fresh tomato sauce all from the garden–zucchini, tomatoes, red peppers, garlic, oregano, basil , thyme. Once out of tomatoes I canned “pickles” & relish. I used family favorite recipes and just swapped out the cucumbers for zucchini.

  9. Joanne says

    Have you tried the NEW Pamela’s Artisan Flour Blend? It works great! I was so impressed! I used it to make Banana Bread last night..NO grittiness at all! Even my non-GF taste tester husband was fooled! BTW…..I really like the Banana Bread recipe I used ..if you want it let me know….