Photo: Lee Harrelson; Styling: Jan Gautro, Laura Zapalowski
16 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

When life gives you too much zucchini, make this chocolate zucchini bread. Moist enough to feel like a cake, this recipe is a great way to use up excess zucchini as well as sneak vegetables into a sweet treat. There’s plenty of chocolatey flavor, so the entire family will love this healthier take on zucchini bread. Plus, it easily doubles and freezes well, so you can enjoy it even after summer ends. 

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

Place first 3 ingredients in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at low speed until well blended. Stir in applesauce.

Step 3

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and the next 4 ingredients (through salt), stirring well with a whisk. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture, beating just until moist. Stir in the zucchini and chocolate chips. Spoon batter into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out almost clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack, and remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.

Ratings & Reviews

JeniferK's Review

March 02, 2015
I've been making this recipe for years, although I do muffins and bake for 25 minutes. They freeze beautifully and are perfect for an after school snack. My kids and their friends love them! Also my friends, co-workers and hubby :-). One change I make sometimes is to use coconut oil instead of veg oil when I have it on hand - it doesn't affect the taste at all.

Excellent with a few tweaks...

August 05, 2015
I've made this several times and made slight adjustments to the recipe each time. I bake this in three small loaf pans instead of one large one. Because I'm making smaller loaves, I used mini chocolate chips instead of the regular ones. I also doubled the cocoa and added 1/4 tsp espresso powder to the batter (don't worry, this doesn't give the bread a coffee flavor...espresso powder is just a great way to boost the chocolate flavor in anything like this). And I substituted whole wheat flour for half of the white flour with no noticeable change in texture. If you use smaller pans, like I did, be sure to check for doneness much earlier. The small loaves take about 35-40 minutes in my oven. Your results may vary. My final tweaked version of this bread is moist, not too sweet, chocolatey, and delicious. Everyone who has tried it loves it.

lollypaul's Review

September 08, 2013
Couldn't even detect the zucchini! I liked this bread because it wasn't so sweet. I went a little shy on the 3/4 cup sugar, and only put half the oil in, I used one cup of white whole wheat flour, and one cup of all purpose. Other than that, I followed the recipe. A little more cocoa would be good, and you might be able to omit the oil entirely. Easy recipe. Make sure you check it in the middle for doneness.

Ltoeat's Review

August 08, 2013
Moist and chocolaty, I would put this in the cake category because of the sweetness. The finely grated zucchini was runny, some of the juice ran out on the counter and was discarded. I was worry that the batter would be dry. Instead of applesauce, I just grated two fresh apples. Would make this again.

Dorseyl's Review

August 25, 2013
Like many other reviewers, I made a few changes to this recipe. I really just wanted a good regular old zucchini bread recipe but I came across this one instead and decided to use everything but the cocoa powder and chocolate chips to give me what I wanted. It worked out perfectly! I subbed in whole wheat for the last 1/2 cup of flour and baked these into mini muffins. I would definitely use this recipe again!

wicksue's Review

July 16, 2013
Double points for a tasty way to use my plentiful zucchini and it's chocolate! Easily doubled so I could get four small loaves.


July 16, 2017
I made this as directed and it turned out delicious! My whole family including little kids devoured it. I have made it countless times since and varied the recipe to include whole wheat flour and it was good. I have also modified it to include a lot more zucchini. This is my best way to deal with the seasonal abundance of zucchini; I make dozens of these with as much zucchini I can get away with and freeze for on-hand desserts all year long.


August 11, 2017
As others did, I substituted half of the white flour with wheat flour.  Absolutely delicious.  I took it to a work meeting and it was well received.  Will add to my favorites.

Yummy so far

June 29, 2018
I used whole wheat flour, cacoa powder instead of cocoa, added chia seeds and used unsweetened applesauce. The batter tasted amazing! I put it in my bread maker and I am waiting results. Fingers crossed! But since the batter is amazing, I am sure the bread will be too.

wcnancy's Review

August 16, 2009
I will definitely try this again. I prefer a little less cinnamon, a little more sugar and a touch more oil. I am also interested in swapping a 1/4 cup of flour for flax meal. This is a great way to make the most of all our summer zucchini.