Stubborn

I haven’t been buying cookies, sweets, or bakery items lately. No, I’m not on a diet. I’m just being stubborn. Stubbornly healthy? Well, yes and no. When I see all manner of desserts at the store, I think to myself, I can make that. Who…

Stubborn

I haven’t been buying cookies, sweets, or bakery items lately. No, I’m not on a diet. I’m just being stubborn.

Stubbornly healthy? Well, yes and no. When I see all manner of desserts at the store, I think to myself, I can make that. Who needs convenience, it’s so much more fun when I bake it myself. Only thing is, I haven’t been baking a lot, simply because it’s been a bit busy, what with the start of the school year and all.

After several weeks of witnessing my poor, baked goods-impoverished family search the cupboards for something – anything – to fill that cake-y void in their sad bellies, I promised myself I would get baking, pronto.

Three days later, I finally did. I confessed on Facebook that I was determined to bake on Sunday, and that I was trying to decide between zucchini bread or a cake. Some wonderful readers encouraged me to do zucchini cupcakes, and it was the perfect compromise. My family loves cupcakes, I myself was craving frosting, and I had a huge pile of zucchinis waiting to be transformed.

I adapted some of my favorite zucchini recipes into Zucchini-Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with a dreamy Cream Cheese Frosting. My dessert-deprived family raved about them – I like to think they really were good and it wasn’t just the deprivation talking. Lucky for them, I’ve got the baking bug, so there’s more to follow.

Zucchini-Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes one dozen cupcakes.

Ingredients

For the cupcakes*:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup chocolate chips
2 zucchinis, shred (about 2 cups)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup oil

For the frosting:

1/2 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 lb powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugars, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Stir in chocolate chips. In a separate mixer bowl, incorporate zucchini, eggs and oil until well blended. Gradually incorporate the dry ingredients. Distribute into paper lined cupcake tray, place in oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cakes comes out clean.

Mix/Whisk together the butter and the cream cheese until fully incorporated. Slowly add the sugar in 1/2 cup increments, blending well. Whisk in the vanilla. Store in refrigerator till ready for use.

Comments

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  1. Lindsey

    You’ve just made my evening. Definitely adding this to the must-bake list pronto! Your photos continue to blow my mind, you’re very talented!

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Lindsey! You’re too flattering – thank you so so much!! Hope you do try these – they’re so easy to make and very easy to eat :)

      Reply
  2. Sophia

    These cupcakes really look great!! The only time of year that I bake cupcakes is Valentine’s Day. I make these Be My Valentine Cupcakes for my special someone! These would be perfect for my niece’s birthday. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  3. skip to malou

    I only had zuchini eaten as a veggie dish rather than a cupcake… it intrigues me however… makes me want to try!

    Thanks for sharing!
    Malou

    Reply
    • Liren

      I hope you do try zucchini in something sweet, Malou! It really works (and it’s good for you!). It’s a lot like carrot cake!

      Reply
  4. Melissa K

    Oh my now I have an excuse to use up all the zucchini that I was so lucky to receive. Can freeze the cupcakes?? Also, have you ever tried freezing shredded zucchini for later use??

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Melissa! Yes, freezing the cupcakes is an option, but if you do so I would recommend using mini chocolate chips. The only reason I say that is because I tend to be impatient when defrosting, and big hunks of semi frozen chocolate can be unpleasant. I also see no reason not to use frozen shredded zucchini; perhaps just drain any excess liquid after defrosting!

      Have fun baking and let me know how they turn out!

      Reply
  5. Asha@FSK

    There is something that Zucchini adds to cakes that just elevates and all without it saying much for itself :) such a gentlemanly vegetable, it is! ;-))

    haha… I have exactly the same thought when I look at baked stuff in the store.. these days, it’s even items on the restaurant menu.. LOL

    Reply
    • Liren

      You’re so funny, Asha! I haven’t quite yet reached that point at restaurants! One day, perhaps. Thankfully, there’s still lots of advanced techniques I have yet to tackle with desserts :)

      Reply
    • Liren

      I’m sure you’ll find loads more zucchini the next time you shopping ;)

      Reply
    • Liren

      You said it, can’t go wrong with cream cheese frosting! Good stuff :)

      Reply
  6. Evan @swEEts

    I have a hard time buying store bought sweets as well..I inevitably find myself judging it and relaying to everyone around me that I could make it just as good or even better! ha I love zucchini bread but I’ve never made zucchini cake so I really want to give this a try!

    Reply
    • Liren

      LOL, glad to know I’m not alone! It’s just so much more rewarding to bake my own sweets, too!

      Reply
  7. Mika

    I never made zucchini cupcakes, they scare me…the idea of use zucchini for a cake makes me very perplex…I know I will try at least once, but I want wait much more…even if yours looks amazing…

    Reply
    • Liren

      I hope that you muster up the courage to try these. If you’ve ever had carrot cake or even banana bread, this is not too far off. The zucchini adds a lot of moisture (and nutrients), and generally, zucchini is not a very strong flavored vegetable, so it’s quite incognito when baked!

      Reply
    • Liren

      Ooh, that’s an interesting thought. I think that as long as the frosting was not too sweet, it would work! Let me know if you give it a try anytime soon!

      Reply
  8. Monet

    I always give in too…I try to avoid baking the sweets, but the urge is just too strong! What a great recipe to use. I love zucchini bread, and I’m certain I would love it even more if there was cream cheese frosting to go on top!

    Reply
    • Liren

      So nice to know I’m not the only one! You would love these, since you like zucchini bread!!

      Reply
  9. Baking Barrister

    I wish someone would take it upon themselves to consider me sad and baked-good impoverished enough to bake me batch of these. Not fair.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Awww, I chuckled so hard when I saw your comment!!! I guess I was being a little dramatic, huh?

      Reply
    • Foodfighter

      Zucchini and chocolate….on first blush, i wouldn’t bite, but the photos compel me otherwise. I’m not big on a lot of frosting either; i find that it often overwhelms the cake, the star of the show. BUT, i’d try this. Easy recipe, fresh ingredients, inventive.

      Reply
      • Liren

        I hope you do try it someday, you’ll be surprised, I bet!

  10. CarolineAdobo

    I’d much prefer to make my baked goods too but only because I can’t bring myself to pay $3 for one cupcake when I know I can bake a dozen for the same prize! (Am I being a cheapskate? haha)
    Lovely looking cupcakes, just the sight of them makes me happy.

    Reply
    • Liren

      Not a cheapskate at all :) Plus at least I know what ingredients are in my cupcakes!! You’re so sweet, I’m glad you like how they look!

      Reply
    • Liren

      I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. It’s very similar to the texture of a banana cake or carrot cake! Hope you try it!

      Reply
  11. Susi

    I don’t buy any baked goods from the store. You can make anything so much better homemade! Your cupcakes are beautiful and I wouldn’t mind having one of those :o) Great picture!

    Reply
    • Liren

      Hi Susi! Thank you for stopping by and for your lovely comments! I just love homemade more, if only I had more time!

      Reply
  12. Anne

    I feel the same way about baked goods – why buy them when I can just make them myself? It must be zucchini season, since I just made some zucchini cupcakes this week too. These look very good, and the frosting looks especially good in the picture.

    Reply
    • Liren

      I do love zucchini season – there is so much to be done. I have definitely noticed a lot of zucchini posts lately :)

      Reply
  13. Cristina

    I think you know my luv for muffins, and then fruit/veggie muffins: happiness. I’m always on the lookout for good fruit n vegetable bread recipes and look fwd to making these. Your frosting piping is beautiful!

    Reply
    • Liren

      I do, I do know your love for fruit/veggie muffins! They are the best :) And thanks for the piping compliment, I was happy with how they turned out :)

      Reply
  14. RavieNomNoms

    Love love love it! You can make all sorts of awesome things with zucchini

    Reply
  15. Julie Gardner

    These look delicious! I may give this recipe a try the week after next, as a first-day-of-school treat. One question: do you drain the zucchini before mixing it in? In my experience, they tend to get very wet when shredding them. Oh! And mini-chocolate chips? I think they get better distributed in the batter than the standard size chips. Looking forward to more baked goods… although, I’m sure your family is looking forward to them even more so :)

    Reply
    • Liren

      Julie, these will be the perfect first day of school treat to come home to! The kids will love it!

      I actually do not drain the zucchini – I like the moisture it all lends, but then again, I’ve never had zucchini that really let out a lot of moisture when I shred them. If you’re worried, then drain or blot lightly. I do like the idea of mini chocolate chips, especially for left overs.

      A general trick to help larger chocolate chips distribute easier is to toss them in flour before incorporating. For some reason, that helps. In this recipe, that part is already taken care of, so you should be all set. Good luck and let me know how it works out!

      Reply
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