This easy Zucchini Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting will become a staple in your summertime dessert rotation!
This Zucchini Cake was one of the last things I made before we ripped out our kitchen. It’s a sheet cake made in a 9 x 13 inch pan, which delivers thick, luscious slices of cake with a hint of cinnamon. I made it for a girl’s night, thinking it’d be the perfect occasion to offload most of the cake so it wasn’t sitting around the house tempting me night and day.
Turns out, I wished I had hoarded the cake all to myself! Sweet P and I both loved this cake, and we polished off the few leftover slices in no time.
A few days later, we demoed the kitchen, leaving us without an oven or a way to bake. Of course, I immediately started craving the cake again. Why hadn’t I frozen a few slices? What was I thinking leaving myself without a spare stash of zucchini cake? And who would let me borrow their kitchen so I could make more ASAP?
You could call it the pregnancy talking, but I think it’s just that this cake is darn good. The cake, which is packed with 2 cups of shredded zucchini (who says kids won’t eat vegetables?), is pretty fantastic all by itself, but it’s the cream cheese frosting that makes it completely irresistible. Weeks later, and I’m still dreaming about it.
I find the cake gets even better on the second and third day, so it doesn’t hurt to have leftovers hanging about for a couple days. Just don’t hold me responsible if you’re tempted to eat it for breakfast, dessert, and an afternoon snack!
I’m going to be taking a couple weeks off from new recipes to enjoy the summer with my son (and hopefully get cracking on our new baby’s nursery!). In the meantime, you might want to check out some of my other summer favorites, like these Peach Cobbler Cheesecake Bars, Balsamic Grilled Vegetables, or The Best Veggie Sandwiches (<<this is my go-to lunch once the garden starts producing!).
For the cake:
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups shredded raw zucchini
- 1 cup granulated sugar
For the frosting:
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 Tablespoon milk
- 4 ounces softened cream cheese
- 3 Tablespoons softened unsalted butter
- Pinch salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the vegetable oil and sugars until smooth. Add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and continue to beat until fluffy.
In another mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add to the egg mixture and beat on low speed until no white streaks remain. Fold in the shredded zucchini.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the center springs back when touched. Remove from oven and allow to cool before frosting.
Meanwhile, beat together the cream cheese, butter, milk, and vanilla. Add the powdered sugar in two portions, beating on low speed then increasing to high as the sugar is incorporated. Add a pinch of salt if desired. Spread evenly on the cooled cake.
Cake can be stored in an airtight container for several days.
If you'd like thinner, more bar like slices, feel free to use a 11 x 15 inch pan and decrease the bake time to 25 minutes. You may also add up to 1 cup of chopped nuts of your choice to the batter.