Chocolate zucchini cake with coconut cream frosting is a delicious and beautiful dessert that’s gluten free and vegan. A rich chocolate cake is a perfect sweet treat to enjoy this summer!
You know how sometimes you want to be fancy, but you really don’t have time to be fancy?
Maybe you have a party coming up, and you have visions of a beautifully decorated cake…lots of swirls and rosettes, and a perfectly smooth frosted top. And then you look at your house and realize that you also need to do the laundry, vacuum, feed your children, and by the way, all your icing tips have disappeared because someone thought they were “robot fingernails.”
Sound familiar? Just me?
This is the cake for you, my friend. This chocolate zucchini cake is decadent, rich, and beautiful. But it’s also so easy.
The frosting is made from coconut cream that’s been whipped with powdered sugar and cocoa powder until it’s fluffy and light. And just to make things easy, only the tops of the cake layers are frosted. No need to smooth out the sides – just frost and top with fresh berries. This chocolate zucchini cake couldn’t be any easier!
It’s just the thing to make when you’re short on time but still want a special dessert.
Can you taste the zucchini in this vegan chocolate zucchini cake?
No, you can’t! The zucchini adds moisture to the cake, and since it’s a chocolate cake, you won’t even be able to see the shredded zucchini.
What’s the best way to grate zucchini for baking?
Use a hand grater to grate the zucchini to get fine shreds. If you use a food processor, you might see the larger pieces of zucchini in the cake.
Ways to customize this chocolate zucchini cake:
- make vanilla coconut whipped cream instead of chocolate
- top it with shredded coconut instead of berries
- add chocolate chips to the batter
- serve it with a drizzle of hot fudge sauce for extra decadence
Can I use something other than coconut milk for the frosting?
If you can’t have coconut milk you may want to try making a simple dairy free buttercream to frost this cake. Or you could use your favorite dairy free ice cream to make this into an ice cream cake!
Does this cake have to be made in round cake pans?
It could be made in two 8 inch square pans. Or you could use a larger sheet cake pan. Just keep an eye on it if you make a change to the pans. The baking time may vary.
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Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting.
A decadent and beautiful vegan and gluten free dessert - this chocolate zucchini cake is topped with coconut cream frosting.
For the cake:
- 3 cups gluten free flour blend I used Namaste Perfect Flour Blend
- 1 ¾ cups organic cane sugar
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon baking soda
- ⅔ cup vegan buttery spread melted
- 1 cup zucchini shredded
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup cold water
For the frosting:
- 30 ounces full fat coconut milk chilled for at least 8 hours - I used So Delicious Culinary coconut milk
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 3 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
For the topping:
- ¾ cup strawberries sliced
- ⅓ cup blueberries
Make the cake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease two round 9-inch cake pans. Cut circles out of parchment paper and press into the bottom of the pans.
Whisk together the gluten free flour blend, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda, and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine the melted vegan buttery spread, shredded zucchini, apple cider vinegar, vanilla extract, and water. Mix on low speed until combined.
Add ½ of the dry ingredients and mix on medium speed. Add the other half of the dry ingredients, and continue to mix on medium speed until well combined.
Divide the batter between the two round cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 26-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cakes comes out clean.
Allow the cakes to cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then invert the pans over a cookie sheet and tap the bottom until the cakes release. Let the cakes cool completely before frosting.
Make the coconut cream frosting:
Remove the chilled coconut milk from the refrigerator. Depending on what kind of container it's in, either let the liquid drain out, or use a spoon to scoop out the chilled coconut cream and put it in a mixing bowl.
Add the powdered sugar and cocoa powder to the coconut cream and beat on medium speed, then increase to high speed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Once the coconut cream is light and fluffy, turn off the mixer. Place the bottom layer of the cake on a cake stand. Frost the bottom layer with half of the frosting.
Stack the other layer on top, and spread on the rest of the coconut cream frosting. Top the cake with the strawberries and blueberries.
Leftover cake should be refrigerated.
This frosting is not super sweet - if you want it to be sweeter, just add more powdered sugar as needed! This was sweet enough for my family.
Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
If you are not gluten free, you can use all-purpose flour instead.
That’s all there is to it! A perfect cake for a party, and a perfect way to use up a bit more zucchini from that overflowing garden! :)
Can you use cake flour instead of gluten free or all-purpose?
I have not tried that, so I am not sure. I know cake flour has a lower protein content than all-purpose flour, so I’m not sure how that would affect this recipe.
This looks so delish! Ill be making this a recipe as a birthday cakes later, and was wondering…will the frosting melt? Should I make a buttercreme?(for storing purposes) OR will it sit well in the fridge?
Do you have a substitute for refined sugar? Your Chocolate Banana bread is a hit with coconut sugar. But what can I use in place of powdered sugar?
Looks delicious. Can I use regular flour instead of gluten free flour?
Yes, you sure can!
Looks so yummy. Thanks. Do you have a good recipe…allergy friendly for zucchini bread?
I have this cake: https://theprettybee.com/zucchini-spice-cake-with-cream-cheese-frosting/ as well as other zucchini recipes here: https://theprettybee.com/?s=zucchini
Looks wonderful. I plan to print and make next time my allergy kids come home. :) Thanks…..you have helped so much and your cookbook I ordered is so beautiful. :)
Thank you! I’m so glad that I can help! Thank you for reading, Kathy, I appreciate you! :)