My Chocolate Zucchini Bread recipe is a classic zucchini bread amped up with layers of chocolate culminating in a thick layer of ganache. It’s a super delicious way to scratch that mid-summer itch for a little chocolatey indulgence.
Beware ~ this Chocolate Zucchini Bread (it’s really a cake) is absolutely irresistible.
It’s shamelessly all about the chocolate, with a bunch of fresh zucchini thrown in to keep it legal. If you’re planning to make it for company, better bake two, you won’t be able to control yourself.
This classic zucchini bread has been transformed into a double chocolate zucchini bread with the addition of cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate chips.
We’re not even halfway through summer but I feel like I’ve gorged on all the salads, fresh veggies, and berries I could ever want…and there’s boatloads of zucchini hanging around, so now it’s time for a different kind of good eats. This bread would be fantastic naked — just sprinkle it with a bit of powdered sugar and call it breakfast or a coffee break.
But I don’t believe in doing things halfway, and adding a thick layer of bittersweet ganache really turns this zucchini bread into an experience.
Even though once you bake this bread you can’t see the zucchini (it doesn’t stand a chance with all that dark chocolate) it’s in there, and it gives this cake a great moisture and a nice loose crumb.
Do you peel zucchini for zucchini bread?
- Heck no! Just grate it up on a box grater and you’re good to go.
What kind of chocolate do you use for chocolate zucchini bread?
I’m glad you asked because I have strong opinions on this subject!
- I use dark chocolate for the cocoa powder, the chocolate chips, and the ganache.
- I like Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder, it’s a ‘Dutched’ cocoa powder formulated to give a super deep color to baked goods. Sometimes I’ll use half Special Dark and half regular cocoa powder if I don’t want it quite so intense.
- I like to use either Nestle’s Dark Chocolate Chips or sometimes I use Ghirardelli’s Bittersweet Baking Chips. I use these both in the batter and in the ganache. I think their flavor is superior.
What is ganache?
Chocolate ganache is a mixture of heavy cream and chocolate. When melted together they bond and form a thick creamy mixture than can be made with different proportions of cream to chocolate for various uses such as frostings and fillings or truffles. As ganache cools it becomes firmer.
- The ganache I use to frost this zucchini bread is made with 1/2 cup cream and 2 cups chocolate chips. The result is thick enough to spread on the cake without any dripping. As it cools, or if you refrigerate the bread, it takes on a fudge-like texture.
Can you make a vegan ganache?
- Yes! Use canned coconut cream instead of dairy cream.
- use dairy free dark chocolate or chocolate chips.
- Use everything in the same proportions, it works beautifully!
Be sure to check out my Chocolate Pumpkin Bread, too!.
Chocolate Zucchini Bread
- standard 9×5 loaf pan
- parchment paper
- 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder, I used Hershey’s Special Dark
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups grated zucchini, buy two medium
- 2/3 cup chocolate chips, I used bittersweet
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
- Set oven to 350F
- Lightly spray and line a 9×5 loaf pan with parchment, leaving the ends long so you can lift the cake out for slicing after it has baked.
- Whisk the dry ingredients together. I like to sift the cocoa powder to get rid of any lumps. Set aside.
- Whisk the sugar and eggs together until pale and smooth. Beat in the butter and vanilla, then fold in the zucchini.
- Blend the dry ingredients into the wet, in three stages, blending just until incorporated after each addition, and don’t over-beat!
- Fold in the chocolate chips and spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for about 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center doesn’t come out with wet batter clinging to it. Melted chocolate is ok!
- Cool completely on a rack before frosting.
- To make the ganache, heat the cream to a simmer, then pour over the chocolate chips. Let sit for 3-5 minutes, then stir until glossy and smooth. If you still see bits of chocolate, microwave it for 15 seconds and stir again. Then spread a thick layer over your zucchini bread. If your ganache seems too runny, let it sit or refrigerate for a bit to set it up.
- I made this with bittersweet chocolate and extra dark cocoa powder, and so it has a bittersweet flavor. If you don’t like that, be sure to use a sweeter chocolate.
- If you want to try a similar recipe without the zucchini, try my Chocolate Pound Cake.