This Zucchini Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting calls for all the warm and flavorful fall spices that I love using once August rolls around. Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and clove bring in that warm and cozy home-baked feeling. Plus, we get to use up some of that garden zucchini! Moisture is important and 3 full cups ought to do it.
I love this spice cake with a cream cheese frosting. You can use your favorite recipe or link to mine below. It’s not too sweet and not too tangy. As a result, it’s perfect for most recipes that call for a cream cheese frosting. This one takes about 5 minutes to whip up. I just love it with this spice cake.
Some Tips On The Frosting:
The frosting can be made in advance. Even a few days in advance. And, it also sets up when refrigerated, so if you make it ahead of time, allow it to come to room temperature a little so it spreads more easily.
My recipe provides enough frosting for about 1/4 inch layer on a 9×13 spice cake. You’ll have a bit extra or you could use the entire amount for a slightly thicker layer, which in my opinion, is a good thing.
This cake also holds well in the refrigerator. And, for a professional-looking finish simply slice it while slightly chilled and the frosting holds a clean and crisp edge.
Below is the quick recipe video and a recipe card and here are some other zucchini recipes you might like:
Zucchini Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 C flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3 tsp ground cinnamon or to taste (we like cinnamon)
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 3 C zucchini, grated loosely packed, about 2 medium zucchini
- 1/2 C unsalted butter
- 1/2 C canola oil or other light oil
- 1 C granulated sugar
- 3/4 C dark brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 C grated zucchini
- 1 Linked recipe for Cream Cheese Frosting (you'll have a little bit extra, about 1/2 C)
- 1/4 C chopped pecans or walnuts for topping, optional 1
Preheat oven 350f
- Prep a 9×13" cake pan with parchment and spray with non-stick spray or rub with a light coat of oil or butter to prevent sticking. Set aside.
- Combine dry ingredients. Set aside.
- Grate the zucchini. Enough for 3 loosely packed cups. Set aside.
- In a medium-large bowl, beat softened butter, oil, white sugar, and brown sugar. The mixture will lighten and whip up when it becomes fully incorporated. Add vanilla, egg, and the coffee and beat until thoroughly combined. The mixture will lighten and increase in volume.
- Add eggs, one at a time, and beat after each addition. Add vanilla.
- Add the dry ingredients in 2 batches. Mix on low speed just long enough to fully incorporate the flour. Avoid overmixing.
- Switch to a spoon or spatula and fold in the zucchini. The batter will be thick but will be smooth & silky once the zucchini has a chance to meld with the rest of the ingredients.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spread evenly.
- Bake at 350f for about 30 – 35 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Avoid over-baking.
For the Frosting
- You'll need 1 recipe of my Cream Cheese Frosting (or your own favorite recipe).
- Allow the cake to fully cool and frost.
- Sprinkle with nuts (optional). Slice and serve. See notes.
Did you know that I bake at ‘high altitude’? I really should say I bake at high elevation’ because after all, I’m not baking on an airplane. If you have questions about high elevation baking I would recommend you check out the links below. One is our local Ag Extension at Colorado State University and the other is King Arthur Flour for their guide on baking at elevation.
King Arthur Flour https://www.kingarthurbaking.com/learn/resources/high-altitude-baking