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Chocolate Turtle Zucchini Cake

Servings 12 -18 servings


  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa I used Valrhona, but Hershey's works great too
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup canola oil or vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup 6 ounces mini chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans toasted
  • 10 Minute Buttermilk Caramel Sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 13 x 9 pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl beat sugar and oil for about a minute.
  4. Add eggs, applesauce and vanilla to the sugar mixture and beat for another minute.
  5. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk starting and ending with flour mixture and beating on low after each addition just to combine. (1/3 of flour mixture, 1/2 of the buttermilk, 1/3 flour mixture, 1/2 buttermilk, 1/3 flour mixture.)
  6. Stir in zucchini.
  7. Pour, then spread evenly into prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, sprinkle chocolate chips and pecans evenly over top.
  9. Return to oven and bake for 10-15 minutes longer or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.
  10. Allow to cool. Cut into squares and serve with warm 10 Minute Buttermilk Caramel Sauce.

Recipe Notes

*I shredded my zucchini right before I used it. I didn't peel or drain it and filled the measuring cup without pressing down hard and packing it. I just pressed very lightly to insure I had a full two cups. If it sits for awhile, liquid will begin to collect in the bottom. There was a little extra liquid that began to collect in the bottom of the bowl I used that I did not add to the batter.

*Tip for toasting nuts without burning them...If you have a toaster oven, spread the nuts evenly on a pan or piece of foil and use the toast setting on the lowest level. I toasted mine twice on the lowest setting. The timer helps you remember not to burn them, which can happen so easily if you're not vigilant.

Zucchini Cake from Taste of Home Buttermilk Caramel Syrup from Our Best Bites

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