Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

This moist and fudgy double chocolate zucchini bread will raise a huge question. How on earth are there vegetables in THIS?!

slices of double chocolate zucchini bread

Alternate titles for today’s recipe:

  • Chocolate Cake Bread
  • Chocolate Bread That is Actually Filled with Vegetables but Tastes Like Brownies
  • Peanut Butter’s Soul Mate Bread
  • Where’s All The Butter and Oil? Bread
  • This Won’t Ruin My Diet? Bread
  • Stop Talking I Need to Eat This!!! Bread

This chocolate zucchini bread is incredibly moist and fudge-like. Filled with shredded zucchini and no one will be any the wiser. Tastes like chocolate cake. It can be our little secret!

slices of double chocolate zucchini bread on a blue plate

Besides the addition of a green veggie, this recipe has a slew of other notable ingredients. First of all, there is only 1/2 cup of sugar in the entire loaf. Chocolate chips provide further sweetening, while also creating melty pockets of chocolate throughout each slice. Another ingredient doing double duty is the Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt adds protein, while also tenderizing the bread.

chocolate chips

A little espresso powder makes each slice incredibly rich– the bread doesn’t taste like coffee, rather, the espresso powder accentuates the chocolate flavor.

slices of double chocolate zucchini bread on a blue plate with a fork

See recipe notes for double chocolate zucchini muffins & cupcakes.

double chocolate zucchini bread cupcakes

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slices of double chocolate zucchini bread

Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

My piece of advice? Make more than 1 loaf. This bread disappears! Recipe can easily be doubled or tripled or baked in batches.


Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (225g) shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour* (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 cup (41g) natural unsweetened cocoa powder (not dutch process)*
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee powder (or 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder)*
  • 3/4 cup (135g) semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips*
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) canola or vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup (60g) plain Greek yogurt*
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar*
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a 9×5 (or 8×4) loaf pan with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. Place the shredded zucchini on a couple paper towels to absorb some (but not all!) moisture. Press a paper towel on top as well. Set aside until step 4.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, instant coffee, and chocolate chips together until combined. Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, yogurt, sugar, and vanilla together until completely combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and lightly whisk until combined. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold in the zucchini. Pour/spoon batter into prepared baking pan, scraping up every last drop. Trust me, you want it all!
  5. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. My bread only took about 46 minutes, but do not be alarmed if yours takes longer. All ovens are different. Allow bread to cool completely in the pan set on a wire rack. Slice and serve when bread has completely cooled. Store leftover bread in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Bread freezes well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving.
  2. Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins: Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C) degrees and spray a 12-count pan with nonstick spray or line with cupcake liners. Prepare batter as directed above, fill each liner to the top with batter and bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C). Then, keeping the muffins in the oven, lower the temperature to 350°F (177°C) and continue to bake for an additional 14-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Makes 10-12 muffins.
  3. Chocolate Zucchini Bread Cupcakes (pictured above): Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C) and line a 12-count pan with cupcake liners. Prepare batter as directed above, fill each liner 2/3 full with batter and bake for 19-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool then frost with milk chocolate frosting and garnish with mini chocolate chips. Makes 12 cupcakes.
  4. Flour: Try using white whole wheat flour or a blend of whole wheat and all-purpose flour! I do not suggest using all whole wheat flour– the bread may be a little too dense.
  5. Cocoa Powder: Do you remember why you shouldn’t use dutch process cocoa? It’s because you need the acid in natural unsweetened cocoa powder to help activate the baking soda. Here is my lesson on baking powder vs baking soda.
  6. Coffee: This little bit of instant coffee or espresso powder accentuates the chocolate SO much. You can’t taste the coffee. But you do taste more chocolate. Always a good thing. Keeping this in mind, you can leave it out.
  7. Chocolate Chips: Don’t leave these out! They sweeten the bread and give the bread more chocolate flavor. The bread is a little bland without them.
  8. Yogurt: I use low fat plain Greek yogurt. You can use full fat, nonfat, or even vanilla flavor instead. Or even regular yogurt (non-Greek).
  9. Sugar: For a sweeter bread, use 3/4 cup sugar.

Keywords: chocolate zucchini bread

Today’s recipe is adapted from Joy of Baking and this Award-Winning Zucchini Bread. Have you tried it yet?!

zucchini bread with chocolate chips and streusel

227 Comments

  1. This was incredible!! Mine didn’t rise much but was perfectly baked and moist and so chocolatey. And there’s vegetables in it!!!

  2. Made this last night and it was a hit! Thank you! First time making a zucchini bread! I’ve worked through several of your recipes and they never disappoint. Can’t wait to try more!

  3. Do you cook the zucchini first? Or is it raw when in the mixture?

    1. Just raw– shred it, then use in the recipe.

      1. Can yogurt be substituted with sour cream?

      2. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

        You bet!

  4. The part about freezing leftovers is funny! There were not even crumbs left on the plate. Thank you for sharing this recipe, my grandchildren have asked for more 🙂

  5. This is delicious!! I did end up using dutch cocoa powder because that’s all I had, which is why the shape of my muffins looked like something out of WhoVille.

    1. Love this recipe! What would cooking times be if using the foil mini bread pans?

  6. I asked my husband to pick up the coffee from the shop, and he came back with cappuccino powder. He went back and came home with ground espresso. Can I use that the same way as espresso powder?!
    Thanks!

    1. Ground espresso isn’t quite as fine as espresso powder, but you could use it here. Same amount.

  7. I made this recipe to exact and the batter was THICK like dough thick, so I added a half cup milk to thin it out a bit… it’s in the oven now, so I don’t know how it will do. I’ve never made a loaf recipe that the dough was that thick, is that how it’s supposed to be?

    1. It shouldn’t be thick like dough, but definitely not as thin as cake batter. The zucchini makes it pretty thick (and lumpy, too). How did it taste?

      1. The half cup milk worked like a charm and the loaves came out perfect! Phew LOL

  8. Sara Goverman says:

    Hi sally! I’m looking at the recipe for the chocolate zucchini loaf and have a question. The recipe calls for I cup of flour that has the grams as well. According to King Arthur baking- 1 cup is 120 grams. I know it’s not a huge difference from the recipe but just wondering what I should go by if making this recipe?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sara! We would stick with 1 cup all-purpose flour as 125 grams as this was how the recipe was tested. Happy baking!

  9. Your recipes are always so delicious, this one being no exception. Perfect amount of moistness, and it’s so deliciously chocolately it’s almost like eating cake.

  10. My sons gf made this for us today. It was delicious and I can’t wait to make it too. I’m wondering if I can use frozen zucchini thawed and if you had any recommendations/tips for doing this? Thaw completely, squish out water? Would you use a packed 1 1/2 cups?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Linda, sure can! Thaw first and pat dry. Use the same amount. So glad these muffins were a hit!

  11. I made this with half zucchini and half carrot, used whole wheat for about one third of the flour, omitted the espresso powder and used coffee flavored Greek yogurt. It was superb, and mysteriously disappeared in less than 24 hours

  12. Amazing! Excellent!!!!!!
    I doubled the recipe, but did not double the sugar. used a mix of mini and regular semi-sweet chips.
    Biggest change was that I substituted almond flour for the plain flour. Bake in 9 by 13 pan for 30 minutes…I did cut a square while it was still hot and it is amazing. My family prefers it warmed for 30 sec in the microwave. I will make again and again.
    Thank you Sally for another wonderful recipe.

  13. Maria Pia F says:

    This is a delicious recipe. I would like to try adding peppermint extract next time because my son loves mint! I am thinking 1-2tsp should do? Thanks 🙂

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Maria! Peppermint extract is very potent – we would start with 1/4 – 1/2 tsp and testing for taste before adding more.

  14. Hi Sally, i would like to make this without zucchini because it’s hard to find where i’m from. But i still want it to be as moist, how do i proceed?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Fatilyn, for a plain chocolate quick bread without zucchini, we’d recommend trying our double chocolate muffins instead, and you can try baking the batter in a loaf pan rather than as muffins. Let us know if you give it a try!

      1. I’ve actually tried that but it came out dry 🙁

    2. Try finding a chocolate banana bread recipe instead. They’re not quite the same and don’t pack the same nutritional value from the zucchini, but its still delicious

      1. Can I substitute boiled beets here in place of zucchini and what quantity (would it be a one to one substitution?).

      2. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

        Hi Nina! We’ve never tested this bread using boiled beets, but shredded, they may work in the place of shredded zucchini. We would try a 1:1 swap. If the shredded beets are extra wet, blot them with a paper towel before adding to the batter. Let us know if you give it a try!

    3. I’d try half as much unsweetened applesauce or cooked/mashed sweet potatoes! Ive done both in the past or adding just a couple tablespoons of water has worked for me in the past as well!

  15. Hey Trina,

    I can’t seem to reply to your comment so I am writing another one. If I do use cooked beets, would using less than the current quantity of zucchini make sense? I assume cooking the beets will make them juicer/wetter so I would want to us less of them to maintain the denser bready texture? Otherwise, the extra liquid may just end up making the cake come out like a very light spongey chocolate cake? I am sure that too would be delicious but I am just trying to understand what might happen. Any insight you can provide would be great and I will certainly post what I end up doing and how it turns out.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Nina! I wish we could help more, but without testing it ourselves, it’s hard to say. But please let us know what you try!

      1. Hey Trina,

        I made the cake with cooked beets today and it was phenomenal!! I kept the recipe identical to yours and just replaced the zucchini 1:1 with raw beets which I then cooked. So I used 225g of raw beets which I cooked in a pressure cooker for about 20 min. I then shredded the cooked beets on a cheese grater, leaving out the skin. I got about 180g of cooked, shredded beets out of the whole thing. I didn’t blot out any excess moisture on a paper towel. In fact, I also added about 30ml of beet juice that had been released in the cooking process into my cake batter. I think you could use canned cooked beets here as well if didn’t want to start from raw beets. I also used 3/4 cups of sugar (150g) since the reviews said it was not sweet enough but I think you could reduce it to 125g or so since the cooked beets are naturally sweeter than zucchini.

        Also for fun, I used about 2 tsp of beet juice and mixed it with about 20g powdered sugar and 1/16 tsp espresso powder to make a bold magenta colored, coffee flavored glaze for the whole cake. The coffee flavor really enhanced the rich chocolate and coffee notes already in the cake! The cake was fabulous and everyone loved it. No beet flavor detected…just amazingly moist and chocolatey. I wish I could post a picture of my magenta glazed cake! Thanks for the wonderful recipe.

  16. Bobbie Crowhurst says:

    Can I double this or triple this recipe?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Bobbie! You should be ok to double this recipe, but for best taste and texture we don’t recommend a triple batch. Making the batter multiple times instead ensures the batter won’t be over or under-mixed.

  17. Etzel Stopher says:

    I followed your directions exactly. I thought the bread was just okay, lacking in taste. Adding a cream cheese icing or a scoop of vanilla ice cream will take care of the problem.

  18. Sally, do you finely grate the zucchini or use the coarser size on the grater?

    I’ve done this with coarse grate and thought the bread was wonderful, but wonder if that was right to do.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Barbara! We usually coarsely grate our zucchini.

      1. Terrific! Thanks so much for such a quick response.

  19. Hi, I love your recipes. I don’t want to use sour cream, yogurt, or cream cheese in my muffins/cakes/breads. What do you suggest as an alternative? Can I just leave it out?

    Thank you!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Dianne, it really depends on the recipe. In some cases, where sour cream/yogurt + milk are used, buttermilk can replace both. In this specific recipe, you don’t want to replace the yogurt with a liquid. Applesauce might work instead, but of course, the final results will be different. When we’ve tried different substitutions for recipes, we always list them in the recipe notes. Hope this is helpful!

  20. Marie Kennedy says:

    Hi! I see that beets and carrots have been used by people making this wonderful bread. Would yellow squash (summer squash) also be a good swap? Out zucchini haven’t come in yet but the yellow squash certainly have…thank you!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Definitely!

  21. Noreen King says:

    Can you use butter instead of oil and is it a 1:1 swap?

  22. Love this recipe is quick & simple. i subbed out the vegetable oil to coconut oil since i had it. very soft & a great snack for me to bring to work. definitely will make it again & also never thought i’d have zucchini in sweet baked goods.

  23. Sally,
    Could I substitute the sugar for honey, agave, maple syrup or something else?
    Also, do you have a sugar-free baking recipe section by any chance?
    Thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Rocio! We haven’t tested this recipe with a liquid sweetener, but let us know if you do! We don’t have a sugar free recipe section, but you may enjoy some of the recipes from our healthier recipe selection – many of which are sweetened with honey/maple syrup.

  24. Colleen Page says:

    My daughter does not like me to try new recipes but she almost woke me up at 11:00 last night to tell me how awesome this loaf was. Every recipe I try of yours are great. Pumpkin muffins were another huge hit. Love your emails and Facebook posts! Thanks!

  25. Just wondering how many servings and calories in this recipe if made exactly as the recipe states? I couldn’t find the nutritional information anywhere.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Belle! We don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful: https://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp

      1. Thankyou so much 🙂

  26. I never have yogurt on hand. Can I substitute sour cream for the yogurt?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Definitely!

      1. Thank you for your quick response!

  27. Made a double batch and it’s in the oven right now. Can’t wait to see how it turns out.

  28. Made a double batch righ away since I needed to use up some zuchini. It’s delicious! I’ve been fight not to eat a whole loaf to myself!

  29. Such a great recipe for what in my family is a favorite! Just made it 2 weeks ago with my last harvest of zucchinis and now I’m on harvest 2 and making the same thing. Sally’s recipes are always spot on, and if you’re an amateur baker, her science lessons on why we use the ingredients and quantities of said ingredients are super helpful to becoming a more confident baker.

  30. My zucchini plants are giving us a couple of zucchini a day, so I made a double batch. With semi-sweet chocolate chips, the sweetness level is perfect for us. Very happy with how this turned out. I made one addition – about a teaspoon of finely shredded orange zest per loaf. It is a very nice accent to the chocolate flavor.

    Mine took the full 55 minutes to bake, but I expected that since I used the smaller baking pans (so the loaves were a little thicker), since there were two in the oven instead of one, and since we live at high altitude (everything takes longer to bake). Getting the loaves out of the pans was a little challenging – next time I plan to line the baking pans with a parchment paper sling, coming up and over the long sides of the pans, and then spray the short ends of the pans with nonstick spray. This is a nice recipe, and also helped me use some yogurt that needed a purpose – thanks so much!

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