Best zucchini cake recipe! This easy one-bowl spice cake takes just minutes to stir together and makes a super moist zucchini cake.
I’ll say upfront that I’m in love with all things zucchini. I wish I had one of those neighbors who had more zucchini than they knew what to do with because I would gladly take it off their hands.
However, my husband is not a fan. In fact, zucchini is one of his least favorite foods. I’ve been winning him over with my zucchini bread, but when I made this Zucchini Spice Cake, I didn’t mention that it had zucchini in it.
And everyone ate it. And enjoyed it.
This cake is moist and with nicely spiced. It’s just a nice, basic spice cake without any hint of zucchini.
So, whether you have zucchini lovers or zucchini haters at your house, this cake is sure to please!
How to make zucchini cake
Begin by whisking the eggs together (photo 1).
Add in the vegetable oil, buttermilk, and vanilla. Whisk in until combined (photo 2).
Add the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Whisk in just until combined. The batter will be thick (photo 3).
Whisk in the zucchini until combined (photo 4).
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake!
Do you peel the zucchini?
No, there’s no need to peel the zucchini before you grate it. Also, there’s no need to squeeze the moisture out of the zucchini before you use it.
Simply grate the unpeeled zucchini and place in a collander until you’re ready to use it.
Frostings that go well with this cake
My favorite pairing is this zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting.
This cake also goes well with my Whipped Brown Sugar Frosting. Sometimes I even I throw in a teaspoon or two of ground cinnamon towards the end when I make that frosting.
It doesn’t have to be refrigerated. However, since the cake is so moist, I find that it keeps better if it is refrigerated.
Also, if you use either of the frostings that I recommend, those frosting need to be chilled.
Can I freeze this cake?
You can! This cake freezes well.
More zucchini recipes!
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Zucchini Spice Cake
- 4 large eggs
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup buttermilk¹
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 cup shredded zucchini2
- 3 cups all-purpose flour³ spooned and leveled
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg4
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a 9×13-inch baking pan.
- In a large bowl, beat eggs.
- Stir in vegetable oil, buttermilk, and vanilla until well-combined.
- Add flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Stir in until just combined. Batter will be thick.
- Add shredded zucchini, and stir until just combined.
- Pour batter into prepared pans.
- Bake for about 25-40 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove from oven, and let the cake cool in pan before frosting.
- Low-fat or full-fat ok.
- Don’t squeeze out moisture. Just shred the zucchini and place it in a collander until ready to use.
- To properly measure the flour, sift or stir the flour. Then, lightly spoon into a measuring cup without packing and level off.
- Allspice can be subbed for the nutmeg.
- Nutrition values are estimates.
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Originally published 7/24/14. Updated 6/10/19.
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Comments & Reviews
Was planning on using a 10 x 17″ pan – make it into bars. How tall is this cake would it work in the larger pan?
I haven’t tried making this in that size pan to say for certain. The baked cake fills about 3/4 of a 9×13-inch pan.
Can I substitute butter for the oil? I’d like to make canna butter spice cake
Thanks in advance!
Hi! I haven’t tried it, but I think you could use melted butter. Two things – 1) you’ll want to have the cold ingredients (like eggs and buttermilk) at room temperature. 2) I haven’t tried using butter in this recipe, but it’s usually necessary to use more butter than oil when making that substitution.
I can’t find the ingredients and directions for the frosting. Could I somehow get that please. Thanks so much.
Hi! The recipe for the cream cheese frosting can be found here. I also have a vanilla buttercream and a whipped buttercream frosting recipe.
Maria GH says
This cake looks delicious!! I’d like to sub for whole wheat flour and coconut sugar . Do you think it would work?
Also for the frosting, would coconut sugar work too?
Thank you! I’m not sure. I think you could make the subs work, but it may take making other changes as well. I’m not sure that the coconut sugar will work in the frosting. The brown sugar melts into the frosting, which keeps the texture smooth. I don’t know whether coconut sugar would incorporate as well. It sounds like you’re looking for a less processed alternative, but I’m not sure what the best sub would be.
Maria GH says
Thanks for your answer Kate! For the cake I did substitute for whole wheat flour and coconut sugar. The cake was AMAZING! I cooked it for my 2 year old daughter’s birthday party and I received lots of compliments. As for the sugar frosting, I didn’t change anything. It was so delicious and light! People just loved it! I found myself eating leftover frosting this morning lol.
If I could add I picture I’d show you how my cake looked but apparently I cannot post a picture.
Anyway, thanks a lot for the recipe!
Hi! I’m glad it worked out! And happy birthday to your daughter! I’d love to see a picture! I’m not sure why it won’t let you add one, but it you post any on social media, I’d love for you to tag me so I can see it. Thanks for coming back to comment! =)
Did you squeeze the water out of the zucchini before you added it to the batter.
I didn’t squeeze the water out. I added it in straight from grating it. Please let me know if you have any other questions!
I just picked 5 zucchini from the garden. I would totally share if we were neighbors! Now, I’m on the hunt for some yummy recipes to make.
That would be awesome! =) Your cake donuts sound like a great start!
Vedika @ Hot Chocolate Hits says
Beautiful photograph! And just looking at the list of ingredients, I can tell this is going to be good. Oil+yogurt= moistness, and who doesn’t like cinnamon and nutmeg?