A fantastically moist and delicious zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting. The perfect way to use up your summer produce!
How’s it going with your garden? Lots of tomatoes? Cucumbers? Zucchini?
If you’re stuck with a lot of zucchini, never fear, you can always make this cake…this amazingly moist and flavorful zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting. It doesn’t get any better than that, does it?
We actually are not overrun with zucchini this year – I’ve been getting them at the Farmer’s Market. But our tomato situation is way out of hand! We forgot to pick them for a couple of days and it was like they exploded overnight. We definitely need to make some homemade tomato sauce or maybe even try oven dried tomatoes again.
Thankfully this is not a tomato cake. (Is that a thing? I hope not).
Can this zucchini cake be made with gluten free flour?
Yes, it can! We had a couple of occasions that I needed to make a cake for a couple of weeks ago, so I was able to make this twice. I did it once with white spelt flour, and once with a gluten free flour blend. It turned out beautifully both times. I used slightly less zucchini when I made it with the gluten free flour because I could tell the batter was going to be too wet.
If you need this to be gluten free, use gluten free flour, like my homemade gluten free flour blend. Spelt flour is NOT gluten free.
What is spelt flour?
Spelt flour is made from spelt, an ancient grain. It is related to wheat, and it does contain gluten.
Can you use frozen zucchini for baking?
If you have a ton of zucchini, you can try shredding it and freezing it for baking. Just shred it, squeeze out any excess liquid, and freeze it in a ziploc freezer bag. It should stay fresh for about three months. When you want to use it in baking, just thaw it out and squeeze out any liquid again.
Can this zucchini cake be frozen?
Yes, this zucchini cake can be frozen before it is frosted. Just wrap it well in plastic wrap and then foil. I don’t recommend freezing a frosted cake, the texture may not be the greatest.
We all loved this cake…it didn’t last long at all. I used half coconut sugar and half organic cane sugar, but you could use all coconut sugar if you prefer, the cake will just be a little bit darker in color.
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Zucchini Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.
- 2 cups white spelt flour *You can use all purpose flour or gluten free flour blend
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ⅓ teaspoon ginger
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup coconut sugar brown sugar is okay
- ⅓ cup canola oil
- 3 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- 1 cup grated zucchini about 1.5 small zucchini, if using GF flour, use ¾ cup zucchini
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- ⅜ cup water
For the frosting:
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 4 ounces Daiya brand vegan cream cheese softened
- 4 Tablespoons buttery spread softened
- cinnamon sugar on top
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the grated zucchini, unsweetened applesauce, canola oil, water, vanilla extract, and vinegar. Stir well.
Add the sugars and stir to combine. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger. Mix well.
Pour batter into an 8x8 inch square pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30-3 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let cake cool completely, then make frosting.
In a mixing bowl whip the Daiya cream cheese and the vegan buttery spread. Sift in the powdered sugar. Mix until very smooth.
Frost the cooled cake and then dust with cinnamon sugar. Store leftover cake in the refrigerator.
Store leftover cake in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
If you don't want to make the frosting, you can just dust this cake with a little powdered sugar.
This recipe makes 9 pieces of cake. Nutrition facts are for one piece of frosted cake.
You can use gluten free flour blend if you need this recipe to be gluten free.
You can use regular butter and cream cheese if you are not dairy free.
This zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting is:
- moist and flavorful
- a delicious way to sneak some zucchini in your diet
- the perfect dessert for summertime
- a great dessert to take to a potluck!
If you’re not dairy free, of course you can use regular butter and cream cheese. I was very happy with how this cream cheese frosting turned out with the Daiya brand cream cheese – I don’t think people even noticed it was dairy free. And if frosting isn’t your cup of tea, this zucchini cake is also very good plain.
Make time to bake this zucchini cake soon! I know you’ll love it.
This post was originally published in September 2015. It has been updated.
Hello, has anyone tried this with a gluten-free flour blend? If so, how did it turn out and what mix can I use? Almost every cake I have ever made gluten free and vegan has turned out very dense and gummy, even when I follow directions exactly. I suspect it is my flour blend. Thanks everyone for your help!!!
Yes, I make this with my homemade GF blend, and I used to use King Arthur when that was safe for us. We don’t use that brand anymore though. You can find my blend on my site!
Hi Kelli….question…..do you leave the skin on the zucchini or do you peel it first?
Leave the skin on, it will not taste weird or anything!
Yummy. :) Can you use a different oil other than Canola?
Yes, any oil that works for your diet should be fine here!
I made this for my office & everybody loved it – even the non-vegan, non-gluten free people! Great recipe. 👌
The batter is thick unlike a box cake mix. Just put it in the oven. Hopefully it turns out…..
I hope it turned out for you!
Ace cake I make a variation of it for a local cafe. Lush ?
So glad it worked for you! :)
Not sure you will get this, i want to make this recipe for sons birthday. Is it possible to use less sugar?
You can use less – I don’t know how sweet your family likes things, but I would say you could reduce the sugar by 25%.
OOoohh love a good spice cake to start off fall! I just made a sweet potato one but I definitely need to try your zucchini one! Thanks for sharing
Hope you love it! Sweet potato cake sounds yummy!
when are you supposed to put the water in?
With the other wet ingredients, I will edit the recipe to indicate that. Thank you!
Kristine | Kristine's Kitchen
I love these photos, Kelly! This cake looks so moist and that cream cheese frosting is the perfect finishing touch!
Thank you, Kristine!
Natalie @ Tastes Lovely
I thought our zucchini plant was done for the season, but I went out this weekend and found one last zucchini that was over 12″! I can use it to make this cake, which looks amazing Kelly!
Sarah@Whole and Heavenly Oven
Oh gosh, that glaaaze! And I’m seriously obsessing over how moist this cake looks—totally craving this for breakfast right now!
Sarah | Well and Full
I actually have a lone zucchini in my fridge that I just don’t know what to do with… This recipe is calling my name right now!!
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice
Oh these cake looks gorgeous, Kelly! I love the spices in here! And that cream cheese frosting sounds like the perfect touch!
This cake looks totally delish :) Pinning!
Strength and Sunshine
I failed this summer and didn’t make zucchini bread or cake! Ah! I guess there’s still time though ;)