This quinoa chocolate cake recipe is made with quinoa flour and zucchini and has a brown sugar streusel topping instead of frosting. Our house is full of huge zucchini. Literally, my husband checked on it one night and it was too small so he went out the next morning and it was huge!
So I figured the best thing to make with it would be a gluten-free chocolate cake recipe. I chose to use quinoa flour because it's grain-free and is great for baking because it lends a subtle, nutty flavor to the cake. The blended zucchini is awesome in this chocolate cake recipe because it makes it moist and light - and a little healthy.
I love the brown sugar streusel because it was REALLY easy to do and it looks really fancy. Everyone who has tried the cake has loved it! Plus, it's a lot easier to make than frosting. I mean, it's not like frosting is all THAT hard, but this is even easier and I think it's better because you get a combination of different flavors.
Fortunately, zucchini is easy to find all year in the grocery store and it's relatively inexpensive. I also like the idea that we're eating something that's healthy. After all, eating this cake helps you get some vegetables in your life. But the real reason to use zucchini is it makes the cake moist - and you don't need as much oil or flour either, which is a huge bonus in my book.
Blended zucchini just means to very roughly chop your zucchini then throw it in your blender and blend until it's like a soup. You could probably get away with just grating it. Blending it is faster and easier and ensures there aren't pieces of zucchini someone could see. Please let me know how this gluten-free chocolate cake recipe turns out for you.Print
quinoa chocolate Cake Recipe with Zucchini & Brown Sugar Streusel
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Total Time: 60 minutes
- Yield: 16 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: Gluten-Free
The blended zucchini is awesome in this chocolate cake recipe because it makes it moist and light - and a little healthy. I love the brown sugar streusel because it was REALLY easy to do and it looks really fancy.
- ½ Cup Butter (can substitute applesauce)
- ⅓ Cup Coconut Oil
- 1 ½ Cups Sugar
- 4 Large Eggs
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- ½ Cup Milk
- 2 Cups Quinoa Flour *
- ¾ Cup Cocoa Powder *
- 1 tsp Non-Aluminum Baking Powder
- ½ tsp Baking Soda
- ½ tsp Real Salt *
- 2 Cups Blended Zucchini
- ½ Cup Sliced Pecans
- 1 Cup Chocolate Chips
- ¼ Cup packed Light Brown Sugar
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9X13-inch pan with cold coconut oil and set aside.
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer (handheld or stand mixer), cream together the butter, oil and sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add ⅓ of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix. Add ½ of the milk; mix. Add another ⅓ of the flour mixture and mix until combined.
- Add the remaining milk and mix followed by the last of the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Stir in the blended zucchini.
- Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the pecans and chocolate chips. Sprinkle the brown sugar on top of everything.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs (don't overbake!).
- Let cool completely before serving. This cake tastes best at room temperature (and is great the next day, too!).
Keywords: Gluten-Free, Moist, Light, Healthy
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In the middle of making this. Zucchini confuses me. Do I blend the zucchini in my vitamix till I get two cups, then put it in? Or do I grate it till I get two cups and put in the grated zucchini?
Sorry that was confusing. I edited the instructions to only use the word blended, not grated.
My daughter made me this cake for my birthday, and it was seriously the best cake I've EVER eaten! Instead of making the cake, she chose to make cupcakes, which were pure heaven in every bite! I froze the leftovers (mostly to prevent myself from inhaling them all myself in one sitting), and they defrosted beautifully.
Thanks for this home-run of a recipe. I'll be taking a closer look at all your recipes now.
Such a sweet comment. Yes, I love this cake too!
I just finished baking !!! my family is starting the transition from unhealthy food to clean, gluten free food. I made muffings instead of a cake and I add dark chocolate chips and coconut flakes to some of the muffins. You cannot even taste the zucchini. Thanks for the recipe 🙂
You are welcome! Glad you liked it!
February 4, 2012 at 2:28 pmi tried this for my cousins faimly because they cant eat anything with gluten in it and they loved it and so did i can eat gluten but i think gluten free foods taste really better than gluten in food and thank you for helping me make a great dessert for my faimly!!!!
I AM MAKING THIS TONIGHT!
Thanks for the recipe, wonderful woman!
Thank you for the kind comment. I hope you enjoy!
This recipe looks great!
Thank you for sharing it with us.
Do you ever cook dairy free as well as paleo?
Yes! I have lots of Paleo recipes on the blog and a growing number of dairy free recipes. Here are all my original recipes to get you started - http://www.mynaturalfamily.com/category/recipes/my-original-recipes/
The last time I made a quinoa cake, it didn't use quinoa flour, just the quinoa itself. It took forever to blend it. Now, I have a Vitamix, and I'm excited to make my own quinoa flour in it. It looks like it will be awesomely moist with the addition of zucchini. I have a houseguest coming tomorrow and I needed a gluten free recipe. This will be it!
Thanks again for a tasty looking recipe!
You're welcome. Thanks for stopping by.
I think I am going to make these for the hubby, see if he notices that they are not his usual treats. He is totally against healthy.
Ha ha. Please let me know how it goes!
Maite's Sweet Food
It looks amazing!!! I'm sure it tasted delicious!!! Greetings from Spain! 😉
Hi, this looks amazing! I was wondering, can you make this recipe without butter, maybe put more coconut oil?
I'm not sure but you could always try and let us know how it turns out . . .
I just made this with some edits.
I used "No Egg" replacement for eggs
Apple sauce for the butter as suggested
1 cup of sugar instead of 1 1/2
It is soooo good!
Thanks for the recipe 🙂
Thanks for this. I was looking for a Quinoa flour cake recipe. I bought some Quinoa flour ages ago and still haven't got around to use it.
Just curious - Does the cake work without the Zucchini? As it means I can try it now rather than go out to the shops 🙂
You would need to find a substitute for the bulk and liquid it provides, so maybe another vegetable?
This sounds amazing! I found this recipe while searching for a quinoa flour recipe I can use for my daughter's birthday dessert. I think I might have found my match! I'm going to pick up zucchini from the store tonight and make a test batch.
Just one question though. Do you think I would be able to use a thicker style coconut milk in this recipe in place of cow's milk?
I regularly substitute coconut milk for cow's milk with good results. I'm not guaranteeing anything but go ahead and give it a try.
Hi! I want to try this! It looks sooo gooodd!! But I have a question, the zucchini is raw right?? Thank you! Greetings from Mexico!
Yes, when you put it in, it's raw.
This sounds so yummy. I'm going to try this with some grated zucchini I have in my freezer.
I bought quinoa a while back and still haven't gotten the nerve to try it. This looks like a great place to start!
After reading Wheat Belly...Im giving wheat free a shot. Cant wait to try this cake, looks wonderful! Thanks!!
It's always good to have extra zucchini recipes when summer comes.
Amy @ Europe's Calling
I'm excited to see you have healthy recipes!
I'm glad you stopped by. Didn't I see you at the Build Your Blog Conference?
Amy @ Europe's Calling
Yes! My mom and I were at the Blogger's Conference representing Europe's Calling. I found your blog by looking through our business cards. It was a great conference.
Can't wait to try this!! It looks amazing.
I've been trying to incorporate more quinoa into my family's meals. What a yummy, unique way to do it! Thank you!
Liked it but it was really dry.
I know it's a little dry cause there isn't gluten to hold it together, but I like it that way cause it's so light. But if you would prefer it to be more moist, add a little extra coconut oil or even butter and don't overcook it - that's the most important thing. Every oven is different so check it often at the end.
Oh my!! I have a sweet tooth and this looks like the remedy, love quinoa!
I love chocolate, and I love cake. This is a wonderful way for me to make it healthy - using quinoa flour. Thanks for the recipe!
Looks delicious! I love anything chocolate and so this will be fun to try. Thank you for posting it:-)
You mention cinnamon but do not list the amount. I am in the midst of making this cake so this time I will leave it out but hope you will let me know if I need it for the next time.
Do you have the right recipe? This recipe doesn't have cinnamon in it.
Grated carrots and grated zucchini can be snuck into many kinds of food giving extra vitamins.
This sounds amazing!
I love quinoa! Why not put it into cake! Excellent!
I have pinned it for later.
Thanks for sharing an awesome recipe. 🙂
It really is good. I need to make it again soon!
I didn't realize there is quinoa flour! I use quinoa all the time, and like experimenting with different flours. This is a very delicious sounding recipe, I like the possible substitutions, too, for a change. Nice way to sneak in the veggies. I would like to try this, I'll see if Whole Foods has the quinoa flour!
I like zucchini in baked goods - sneak in some extra veggies.
This looks amazing. Glad I happened upon this recipe!
This looks really good. One of best friends can't eat gluten but loves chocolate. I can't wait to make this for her. Thanks for sharing!
You're welcome! It really is good. I was really surprised at how good it was. I sure hope you think the same thing.
I love Quinoa and I do know how healthy it is for you. I have never made a cake out of the flour yet, but I love chocolate and this would be fantastic to try.
This looks really good. My husband and I decided to go Gluten free Sugar free a month ago and I am always looking for recipes.
The brown sugar streusel does look fancy! Also, I love the use of zucchini in desserts and I will have to try some quinoa flour. Thanks for sharing!
It really is really good. I rarely eat desserts cause I'm really picky about them. I don't want the sugar and calories unless it's REALLY worth it. This is the most dessert I've eaten in like 10 years cause it is addicting!