Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Zucchini Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Zucchini cake is a delicious way to use up excess zucchini from the garden. This moist cake has hints of cinnamon and nutmeg making it flavorful in every bite. 

The shredded zucchini melts right into the cake and you don't even know it's there. Chopped walnuts bring a bit of bite to the cake and it's topped with my favorite cream cheese frosting

Zucchini Cake

It's that time of year. Zucchini season. Each year we plant a zucchini plant or two. And each year the zucchini are plentiful. Usually after about a month of produce, the squash bugs come and kill off the plant. 

At that point, we're generally ok with it because we've had our fill of zucchini. However, this year there's been no sign of the bugs. So I'll be sharing my favorite zucchini recipes including zucchini muffins and zucchini bread


Cake is one of those things that I'm pretty picky about. In general, I'm not a huge fan of cake. For me, cake must be moist and full of flavor and zucchini cake brings all that. I can't stand dry crumbly cake. 

The zucchini helps to bring that moisture and the cinnamon and nutmeg bring the flavor. It's also got chopped walnuts to add texture.

↓ ↓ ↓ PIN IT ↓ ↓ ↓ 
a piece of zucchini cake on a fork with slice of cake in background
↑ ↑ ↑ PIN IT ↑ ↑ ↑

This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please see my full disclosure policy for details. 


  • sugar
  • applesauce
  • vegetable oil
  • eggs
  • flour
  • cinnamon
  • baking soda
  • vanilla
  • salt
  • nutmeg
  • shredded zucchini
  • chopped walnuts
(Full recipe with quantities at the end of the post)
ingredients for zucchini cake



slice of zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting on a plate

First up, let's shred the zucchini. You can use a cheese grater in a pinch, but I prefer to use my food processor, with the grating disk. It's so quick, I usually shred a bunch to freeze for later use. 

Wash the zucchini and cut off the ends (you don't want the stem or the blossom end in your cake). Don't worry about peeling it, just cut it up into small enough chunks to fit into the opening of your food processor. 

Set the zucchini and aside - we'll add it into the cake batter later.

shredded zucchini in a bowl

Now let's start the cake batter. Begin with the sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and applesauce. Mix those ingredients together with a whisk.

mixing together sugar, oil, applesauce and eggs

Next, whisk in the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. 

Lastly, it's time to stir in the zucchini and walnuts. For this step, I prefer to switch to a wooden spoon. Otherwise the zucchini tends to get tangled up in the whisk.

adding zucchini and walnuts to cake batter

Stir just until combined. 

Pour into a greased 9 X 13 pan and bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted.

Once the cake has completely cooled, frost with cream cheese frosting. 

zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting

Sprinkle on some extra nuts or some nutmeg for a beautiful presentation.

Ok - let's go over a few FAQ's:

How do you shred zucchini?

The quickest way is to use a food processor with a grater disc. You can also use a vegetable spiralizer for fast shredding. However if you don't have either of these, a regular cheese grater will work just fine. 

Should you peel the zucchini?

Nope, there is no need to peel. Just chop off the ends and you're ready to shred. 

Can you freeze grated zucchini?

Yes! I always grate extra zucchini while I've got the food processor out. I measure out the amount needed for the recipes I like and place it in a labeled zip top bag. Lay the bags flat and freeze.

When using the zucchini, let it thaw completely. The freezing and thawing process results in a lot of liquid. In baked goods, I find that removing about half of the liquid gives the best results.



Don't forget to pin it!!
pan of zucchini cakeslice of zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting and walnuts slice of zucchini cake with cream cheese frostingzucchini cake with cream cheese frosting
Zucchini Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Zucchini Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Servings: 16
Author: Rachel Nielsen
Prep time: 20 MinCook time: 45 MinTotal time: 1 H & 4 M
Zucchini cake is a delicious way to use up excess zucchini from the garden. This moist cake has hints of cinnamon and nutmeg making it flavorful in every bite.


Zucchini Cake
  • 1 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 c. applesauce
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 c. shredded zucchini
  • 1 c. chopped walnuts
Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 c. butter, softened
  • 2 tsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 4 c. powdered sugar


Zucchini Cake
  1. Mix together sugar, oil, applesauce and eggs. 
  2. Stir in flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla
  3. Add zucchini and nuts and mix just until combined.
  4. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  5. Let cool completely.
  6. Frost with cream cheese frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. With a hand mixer, mix together cream cheese and butter until smooth.
  2. Add milk and vanilla and 2 cups of powdered sugar. Mix to combine.
  3. Add remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.


Using a food processor (with the grater blade) makes quick work of shredding the zucchini. But a cheese grater will work too. There is no need to peel the zucchini, just chop off the ends.

Nutrition Facts



Fat (grams)


Sat. Fat (grams)


Carbs (grams)


Fiber (grams)


Net carbs


Sugar (grams)


Protein (grams)


Sodium (milligrams)


Cholesterol (grams)


Nutrition information is automatically generated and guaranteed to be correct.

zucchini cake, zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting, how to make zucchini cake
Desserts, Cake

No comments :

Post a Comment