Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

These zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are extra soft with chewy centers and crisp edges. Loaded with chocolate chips, each cookie is flavored with brown sugar and a hint of cinnamon. Best part of all? You can’t taste the vegetable hiding inside.

zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

Zucchini bread & oatmeal chocolate chip cookies: two worlds beautifully collide! Consider these zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies the mandatory solution to a surplus of fresh zucchini. Over the past several years, I’ve tried throwing zucchini into plenty of cookie recipes and this one is the best version I know!


Each Cookie Is:

  • Soft with slightly crisp edges
  • Flavored with butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar
  • Moist, tender, and very chewy
  • Loaded with whole oats and plenty of chocolate chips
  • Delicious in a totally unforgettable way

Plus, should any cookies survive after a few days, they freeze and thaw like a dream. Also important to note: you cannot taste the zucchini. Vegetables have never been so sneaky.

stack of zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

#1 Success Tip: Blot the Zucchini

Have you ever made my pumpkin oatmeal cookies? In that recipe, we blot the pumpkin to rid excess moisture. The purpose of this is to reduce the amount of liquid in the cookie dough. Too much liquid = excess spreading and/or a cakey cookie. We’re applying the same technique here. Shred the zucchini using a box grater, then lightly blot it with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel. No need to squeeze out all the moisture; gently blotting is plenty.

You need 1 cup of shredded, lightly blotted zucchini.


Overview: How to Make Zucchini Oatmeal Cookies

After you blot the zucchini, prepare the cookie dough. The full written recipe is below, but let me walk you through the steps so I can answer any possible questions.

  1. Whisk the dry ingredients together. This includes oats, all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  2. Beat the wet ingredients together. Cream the butter and sugars together. Beat in 1 egg, then a little maple syrup and vanilla. The maple syrup adds flavor, but it also helps the cookies spread out and crisps up the edges. You can use honey instead or you can leave it out completely. (Though I highly recommend its addition!)
  3. Combine the dry ingredients, zucchini, and the wet ingredients.
  4. Beat in the chocolate chips.
  5. Chill the cookie dough. Important step! The cookies will over-spread otherwise.
  6. Scoop & bake. I always use a cookie scoop when I make oatmeal cookies. Oatmeal cookie dough is pretty sticky and textured, so a cookie scoop is helpful. The medium size is perfect because each dough ball should be around 1.5 Tablespoons of dough.

shredded zucchini on cutting board

zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookie dough

Other Add-Ins

Though I typically use semi-sweet in these zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, you can use milk chocolate or white chocolate chips instead. Or try mini chocolate chips or chocolate chunks. For something different, try peanut butter chips, butterscotch chips, or even raisins, chopped pecans, or walnuts. Some may think it’s blasphemy to replace chocolate with raisins but I’m ALL FOR IT. If you love oatmeal raisin cookies, you should definitely try raisins here or even 1/2 chocolate chips and 1/2 raisins!

zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies on cooling rack

zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

One last tip: This recipe calls for room temperature butter. Remember that room temperature butter is imperative in the creaming step. If butter is too cold or if it’s melted in the slightest, it won’t properly aerate with the granulated and brown sugars in step 3. As a result, the cookies won’t hold their shape and will likely over-spread. Room temperature butter is cool to the touch and about 65°F (18°C), which might be colder than your kitchen. If you’d like to read further, I have an in-depth post about room temperature butter.

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zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

Zucchini Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 14 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 35 minutes
  • Yield: 2 dozen
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are extra soft with chewy centers and crisp edges. You can’t taste the vegetable hiding inside! Chill the dough for at least 2 hours before baking.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup (140g) shredded & blotted zucchini (see step 1)
  • 2 cups (160g) old-fashioned whole rolled oats*
  • 1 cup (125gall-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick; 115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed dark or light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup*
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Lightly blot the shredded zucchini with a clean kitchen towel or paper towel. No need to squeeze out all the moisture; gently blotting is plenty. You need 1 cup (140g) of shredded, lightly blotted zucchini. Set aside until step 4. (Or cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. It can be cold when you add it to the dough.)
  2. Whisk the oats, flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat the softened butter and both sugars together on medium speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and mix on high until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the maple syrup and vanilla and mix on high until combined.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and the zucchini to the wet ingredients, then mix on low speed until combined. With the mixer still running on low speed, beat in the chocolate chips. Cover and chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours (and up to 4 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking because the dough will be quite hard.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
  6. Scoop or roll cookie dough, a heaping 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie, and place 3 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 13-14 minutes or until lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft. For crispier edges, bake for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. While the cookies are still warm, I like to press a few more chocolate chips into the tops– this is only for looks! Cookies are extra soft out of the oven, but become chewier as they cool.
  8. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the refrigerator for 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Baked cookies freeze well up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well – up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Here’s how to freeze cookie dough.
  2. Zucchini: I do not peel the zucchini before shredding, but you certainly can if you’d like.
  3. Oats: For these oatmeal cookies, I use and recommend old-fashioned whole oats, not quick or instant oats. Whole oats provide the ultimate hearty, chewy, and thick texture.
  4. Maple Syrup: The maple syrup adds flavor, but it also helps the cookies spread out and crisps up the edges. You can use honey instead or even molasses for a strong flavor– or you can leave it out completely. (Though I highly recommend its addition!)

Keywords: zucchini, chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal cookies

91 Comments

  1. Hi, I had quite a few zucchini from my garden so I grated them in a food processor and froze it in 3 cup portions. There seems to be quite a bit of liquid. For the Chocolate zucchini cake recipe and the Oatmeal, zucchini, chocolate chip cookies should I strain the zucchini or just blot it?

    1. Hi Pat, for cakes, muffins, and breads, it’s ok to have a little excess moisture. Straining if helpful, but no need to strain all the liquid out. But for cookies (like these) I would definitely make sure it’s strained if it has so much extra liquid. Hope this helps.

  2. Excellent recipe! I love using vegetables in sweet treats. I did 15 mins in the oven because I want that extra crisp on the edges. I was so happy to use a tablespoon of Molasses because I hardly ever use this jar of Molasses that I’ve had for a long time. I really need to seek out Molasses recipes before it expires. Coming back to the cookies, I don’t know that I would’ve know the difference if I had used Maple syrup. I love my maple syrup and its quite expensive so I use it sparingly and wisely.
    Tanks again

  3. Kathleen Martinkosky says:

    I followed this recipe to a T. My cookies came out so thin and lacey looking. Refrigerated the dough for 24 hrs. Did not melt my butter.

  4. These cookies are delicious!! I think I found a new favorite.

  5. Really nice. I’d probably decrease the sugar next time (I’m not much of a sweet tooth).

  6. Good, but not great, lacking in flavor, except for the chocolate chips. Really wanted this to work.

  7. Maybe i didnt see it but can these be made gluten free but substitution GF flour and oats ? Wondering is for they consistency is the same

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Dana! We haven’t tested this recipe with gluten free substitutes, but please let us know if you give it a try.

    2. These can absolutely be made gluten free. There are a lot of great gluten free mixes that measure cup-for-cup. I used Bob’s Red Mill gluten free all-purpose flour and added 1/4tsp xantham gum (this is necessary if your mix doesn’t have it). Bob’s Red Mill also makes a cup-for-cup gluten free mix that already has xantham gum in it. Gluten-free chocolate chips are pretty easy to find as well. Aldi’s has a great gluten-free chocolate chip for a great price. I absolutely love these. I’ve made them to share, and everyone raves over them. I wish I could claim responsibility for this great recipe.

  8. Maybe someone can help with this…followed the directions to a T but my cookies spread out terribly and are very flat and crumbly. What can I do to fix this please? Thank you

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kelly, when cookies spread too much, it’s usually the culprit of butter that is a bit too soft. Here’s more on what room temperature butter really means, as well as some helpful tips for improving your next batch of cookies (see #2 in particular for tips about cookies that spread too much). Thank you for giving these cookies a try!

    2. These are delicious I added pecans thank you this is going in my recipe book

  9. I made these exactly as written, and they tasted delicious. My only problem was that they fell apart easily; you couldn’t pick the cookie up without it falling apart. I’m an experienced home baker and have never had this problem before. I weighed all my ingredients, blotted the zucchini, used the maple syrup, refrigerated for 2 hours, baked 14 mins, left to sit on the pan for 5 mins, literally exactly the recipe! I would 100% make again if I knew what went wrong as they had nice flavor.

  10. Hello! Can i cut the sugar in half? 1/4 cup of white and 1/4 cup of brown? Thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Tiana, Sugar is used for moisture and texture in baked goods as well as taste. You can certainly try reducing the sugar, but the resulting texture will be different than intended.

  11. I see. Okay thank you! Also I’m so impressed with how quickly you and the rest of the team replies to comments. With all of the recipe comments it must be hard, and I really appreciate the promptness. 🙂

  12. Hello! I was doubling the recipe to make more cookies but after chilling the cookie dough, i realized i totally forgot to double the amount for egg and maple syrup (i substituted with honey). Is it ok to add in after or now? Or any other way to damage control?

    Thank you

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Irene, You could try letting the come back to room temperature and then adding in the extra eggs and maple syrup. Then allow them to chill again before baking. Hopefully this helps!

  13. These are exactly what I hoped when I searched for a zucchini chocolate chip cookie. I reduced the sugar just a touch and used spelt flour instead of all purpose (I wanted a bit more of a snack cookie than a dessert cookie) and didn’t chill, and they were perfect.

    1. Did use you use white spelt or whole grain spelt? Just curious if these cookies would work with whole wheat or 50/50 flours. Thanks!

      1. I used whole grain spelt.

  14. Hi there, my husband has a glut of zucchini’s,so I thought I’d give this recipe a try. As I’ve baked a lot of your recipes ,which I know are well tried and tested, off I go. That was yesterday.
    Fabulous as always my husband ate 3 off the trot! Came to have one with our morning coffee today….. So soft ,I mean pick it up falls apart ,edge crispness gone. Slightly disappointed however still taste yummy. Followed to the letter ,where did I go wrong?

  15. Hi, I am allergic to baking soda, but can use aluminum free baking powder in small doses, can I replace baking soda with baking powder and if so, how much?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Grace! Unfortunately there isn’t a 1:1 swap with baking powder and soda. You can read more about the difference between the two in this post if you’re interested – sorry I can’t help more!

      1. Thank you for the info!

  16. yes i always use splenda and never had any problems, not sure about stevia but i am sure it can be used also.

  17. Has anyone frozen this cookie?

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Candice, Baked cookies freeze well up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well – up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Enjoy!

  18. Made these today as I had some zucchini I needed to use up and they are perfect! I did use quick oats since that’s what I had on hand but the texture is fine for me 🙂 I love zucchini anyway but, for the picky eaters, you really can’t even taste the zucchini. I was going to freeze them but I don’t even know if there will be any left! Thanks for the great recipe. 🙂

  19. Annie Hildebrandt says:

    These cookies are delicious!!! I would definitely make them again.

  20. Made these today to use up some leftover zucchini, they are sooo delicious and have a great texture – exactly what you want from a chocolate chip oatmeal cookie.

  21. Hello…..I baked these today..delicious… I found I needed to cool on pan at least 10 minutes to stay intact…. I used Bobs Red Mill gf 1 to 1 flour…. cut the sugar to 1/3 cup each, brown &white…. I used part m&ms an part chocolate chips…..although they are very good my m&ms bled!!! If I make these again I will add the candies just before each batch of baking!

  22. I made these there excellent, I added chopped dates such a great cookie thank you for sharing this recipe

  23. I posted a comment on Sept 7……I made them again today……I had neglected to mention on the first post that I used an egg substitute ( 1tsp. Baking powder, 1 T water, 1 T vinegar…combined) We love them!!! So excited that it actually tastes like a real cookie ,even with the flour an egg substitutes!

  24. These are spectacular! Soft, chewy, fluffy and delicious!! Can’t wait to make them again

  25. Made these for a family party a couple months ago and they were a hit. I used about 3/4cup chocolate chips and also added 1/2 cup chopped crystalized ginger which worked really well! Mine didn’t spread as much as I was hoping, they had a thicker cakier texture without crisp edges, but still delicious. I have another batch chilling in the fridge right now, can’t wait to try again!

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