This Chocolate Zucchini Bundt Cake recipe is so easy, so chocolate-y, and so moist! Start with a box of chocolate cake mix, then add grated zucchini, chocolate chips, and just a couple more ingredients. It’s finished with a simple chocolate glaze for the perfect dessert!
What’s in Chocolate Zucchini Cake?
Rich, chocolatey cake is made healthier with the addition of freshly grated zucchini. It’s so good, the kids won’t even notice!
- Cake Mix: You can use your favorite chocolate cake mix for this recipe. I like using dark chocolate cake mix; however, devil’s food or German chocolate cake both work as well.
- Eggs: Add moisture and richness to the cake.
- Zucchini: Adds so much moisture to this cake. Sneak in some veggies for the kids–they won’t notice!
- Yogurt: Plain Greek yogurt helps make this cake extra tender. You can substitute sour cream if you wish.
- Oil: I used vegetable oil, but you could use canola oil, melted coconut oil, or melted butter instead.
- Chocolate Chips: I used mini semisweet chocolate chips. You can substitute regular semisweet chocolate chips, milk chocolate, or even dark chocolate chips here.
- Butter: You can substitute unsalted butter and a pinch of salt instead.
- Cocoa Powder: Unsweetened cocoa powder adds rich chocolate flavor to the glaze.
- Sugar: Powdered sugar melts easily into the glaze, adding sweetness without a gritty texture.
- Heavy Cream: You may substitute half-and-half or milk, but be aware that your glaze will be thinner with these substitutes. I recommend adding 1 tablespoon less of them and adding more, 1 teaspoon at a time, as needed for consistency.
Pro Tip: Fold in some walnuts for a bit of crunch!
Gluten Free Chocolate Zucchini Cake
To make this chocolate zucchini Bundt cake gluten-free, swap the chocolate cake mix for your favorite gluten-free chocolate cake mix!
Nope! We want to keep all that rich moisture in this cake! In fact, if you are using store-bought zucchini you may have to add 1-2 tablespoons of water to the batter to make it wet enough.
The unique shape of a Bundt cake pan allows more of the surface of the cake to be exposed to the heat, so the batter needs to be extra moist to compensate. Ingredients like eggs, oil, yogurt, and zucchini help this cake to retain its moisture.
The trick for easy removal is to grease the pan with Crisco and then flour it in every nook and cranny. Once you have floured every part of the pan, bang it on the counter a couple of times to dislodge any excess flour and dump. Once your cake is baked, let it cool for about 10-20 minutes or until you can comfortably place your hand on the side of the pan. The pan should still feel very warm. Flip onto a plate or cake stand and tap around the pan until you feel the cake come out.
You can use any cocoa powder you prefer, as long as it is unsweetened. Use natural cocoa powder for a more natural taste, and use Dutch-process cocoa powder for a smoother taste.
If you use too much leavening, the cake can rise too quickly in the oven, leading it to collapse once removed from the heat. Be sure to measure the leavening carefully!
This cake can be left out of the refrigerator for up to 3 days, but because it is so moist, I like to store it in the refrigerator to keep it from molding, especially if it’s particularly warm!
How to Store
Store chocolate zucchini Bundt cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Enjoy cold or at room temperature.
How to Freeze
Freeze chocolate zucchini cake whole or cut into individual slices tightly wrapped in 2 layers of plastic wrap and 1 layer of aluminum foil for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before enjoying.
This chocolatey Bundt cake would also be delicious topped with brown sugar frosting or chocolate cream cheese frosting instead of the glaze. Some chocolate jimmies would be so yummy, or hint at the healthy ingredients with green sprinkles!
Chocolate Zucchini Bundt Cake Recipe
For the Cake
- 15.25 ounces chocolate cake mix 432 grams (1 box)
- 4 large eggs 200 grams, room temperature
- 2¼ cups grated zucchini 383 grams, from about 1 whole zucchini
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt 227 grams, room temperature
- ¾ cup vegetable oil 150 grams
- 1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips 177 grams
For the Chocolate Glaze
- 3 tablespoons salted butter 42 grams, melted (⅜ stick)
- ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder 28 grams
- 1 cup powdered sugar 113 grams
- ¼-½ cup heavy cream 57-114 grams
- Preheat oven to 350°F and set out a 12-cup Bundt pan, but don’t grease it yet.
- Mix together the cake mix, eggs, zucchini, yogurt and vegetable oil until smooth and combined, 1-2 minutes, in a large mixing bowl using a stand or hand mixer. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl while mixing.15.25 ounces chocolate cake mix, 4 large eggs, 2¼ cups grated zucchini, 1 cup plain Greek yogurt, ¾ cup vegetable oil
- Fold in the chocolate chips and then grease the Bundt pan well with nonstick spray.1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
- Scoop the batter into the greased pan, even out the top with a spatula and tap the pan gently against the counter 2-3 times.
- Bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes, or until a fork or knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out with just a couple of crumbs but not smeared.
- Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes and then turn out onto a serving plate or cake tray.
- To create the chocolate glaze, whisk together the melted butter and cocoa powder in a medium sized mixing bowl until combined and smooth.3 tablespoons salted butter, ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- Using a hand or stand mixer, gradually beat in the powdered sugar and heavy cream, alternating between the two, until a thick glaze forms. You want the glaze to be thin enough to slowly drip down the cake but not so thin that it all drips off and pools below the cake.1 cup powdered sugar, ¼-½ cup heavy cream
- If necessary, you can add small amounts of powdered sugar or heavy cream to obtain the consistency that you want. Should you choose to glaze the cake while warm you want a thicker glaze than if you glaze it when it has completely cooled.
- Pour the glaze evenly over the top of the cake and allow it to slowly slide down the sides.
- Let the glaze and cake cool completely before cutting and serving.
- Use room temperature ingredients for the best results.
- Be sure to follow the directions when it comes to timing. For example, do not spray the Bundt pan until you are ready to put the batter into it. This helps the cake come out clean once it is baked. Also, be sure to let the cake cool for 10 minutes and no more than 15 minutes before you turn it out of the pan. If it doesn’t get the 10 minutes to cool it may stick to the pan, which could also happen if it cools for too long.
- Don’t overbake your cake, but be sure that it is done when it comes out. I like to look for my toothpick to come out with several moist crumbs but no dough smear. Because there are chocolate chips in the cake I recommend poking a couple toothpicks in different places if one comes out smeared, since it could be just the chip and not batter.
- When making the glaze, you will want to vary the consistency depending on the warmth of your cake. Never try to glaze a hot cake as it will likely soak up the glaze or cause it to warm so much that it runs off. However, you can glaze a warm cake if you have a thick glaze. When I say thick glaze, think of frosting consistency. If the cake has cooled completely to the touch, you will want the glaze to be thinner or it will not slide on and you’ll have to end up frosting it on instead of allowing it to drip down the sides.
- Feel free to chop up some walnuts or pecans for a delicious crunch in the cake, add extra chocolate chips or omit them entirely, or change up the glaze to a vanilla or orange glaze.