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Chocolate Mocha Zucchini Cake

Patricia Reitz

Do you ever find yourself with an abundant supply of zucchini?  How about summer squash?  Want a great recipe that will help use them up?  Look no further - this CHOCOLATE MOCHA ZUCCHINI CAKE is rich, dark, and delicious.  To gild the lily further, add a silky smooth layer of dark chocolate ganache.  Here's how it's made.

Prepare a metal cake pan with Baker's Joy.  I use it for all the cakes I bake.  If you want to turn this cake out of the pan, line the bottom of the pan with parchment.

Note: if you use a glass or ceramic pan, lower the oven temp 25F.

Gather the dry ingredients - flour, sugar, sifted dark cocoa (sometimes sold as black cocoa), ground cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and fine salt.

The ground cinnamon is optional, but I really like it.  Also, I use the darkest cocoa powder I can find (sometimes sold as black cocoa powder).  It makes the cake extra dark, which is extra irresistible. 

Put all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together.

Done; set aside.

Gather the wet ingredients - eggs, oil, vanilla (be sure to use the good stuff), greek yogurt, and brewed coffee (not pictured).

Put all the wet ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk together.


Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together.


Last, add the shredded zucchini to the batter.  You can substitute up to half of the zucchini with summer squash (remove seeds before grating).

Stir the zucchini (and summer squash) into the batter.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan.

insulated cake strips help the cake to bake in an even layer - no hump!

insulated cake strips help the cake to bake in an even layer - no hump!

Wrap the pan with moistened insulated baking strips.  You don't have to do this step, but it will help the cake bake into an even layer.   Otherwise, your cake will likely develop a hump in the middle.

Remove the cake from the oven and cool completely.  While the cake cools, prepare the ganache.  When the cake is completely cool, spread the ganache evenly over the cake.  Chill until service.

chocolate mocha zucchini cake recipe, chocolate zucchini cake tutorial, chocolate zucchini and yellow squash cake recipe with step-by-step photos

I like to serve this cake well chilled.  Time to dig in - enjoy!

Items used to make this recipe:

Chocolate Mocha Zucchini Cake

makes one 9x13-inch cake (15 servings)

Printable Recipe



  • 2 cups all purpose flour

  • 2 cups granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder, sifted (darkest you can find, like this black cocoa)

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (optional)

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon fine salt

  • 2 large eggs

  • 3/4 cup greek yogurt

  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

  • 1/4 cup brewed coffee

  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 2 cups shredded zucchini (or substitute up to half yellow summer squash)


  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

  • 8 ounces heavy cream


To make the cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F, spray metal cake pan with Baker's Joy, and wrap pan with insulated baking strips (optional, but they keep the cake from forming a hump in the middle).

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, greek yogurt, oil, coffee, and pre vanilla extract.

  4. Pour wet mixture into bowl containing the dry ingredients and mix well; add shredded zucchini and stir until combined.

  5. Pour batter into cake pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

  6. Remove from oven and cool completely before adding ganache.

To make the ganache:

  1. Place chopped chocolate in a heat-safe bowl; set aside.

  2. In a medium heavy-bottom saucepan, heat cream until just before it reaches the boiling point (small bubbles will form around the edges).

  3. Remove cream from heat and pour over chocolate.

  4. Let the chocolate and cream steep together for 2 minutes, then whisk gently until the two combine and become shiny, dark, and glossy.

  5. When cake is completely cool, pour ganache over cake; use an offset spatula to spread evenly.

  6. Chill cake until service. Store in an airtight container.