This zucchini brownie recipe is a sneaky way to hide some vegetables in your chocolate desserts! Rich, fudgy, and naturally flourless, no one will know there is zucchini in it!
Adding zucchini to desserts is a cheeky way to hide some greens in your sweets.
I’m no stranger to adding zucchini to desserts. I’ve used to it make a chocolate zucchini bread, classic zucchini bread, and even a chocolate cake. Oh, and let’s not forget the muffins, too. However, the most delicious dessert to add it to is brownies.
Yes, zucchini brownies.
Rich, fudgy, and gooey brownies that pack in shredded zucchini in it…but you’d never tell.
These brownies are naturally gluten free and flourless, and can easily be made keto friendly. They are one of the easiest desserts to make using simple ingredients and with everything done in under 25 minutes…that taste incredible!
- Almond butter– Choose a smooth variety with no added sugar.
- Maple syrup– Agave or honey work, too.
- Brown sugar OR coconut sugar– Either of these sugars work, go for coconut sugar if you want these brownies to be on the healthier side.
- Eggs– room temperature eggs.
- Vanilla extract– A must for any good chocolate dessert.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder– Unsweetened and natural cocoa powder, NOT dutch processed. The latter.
- Salt. A pinch of salt will transform the flavor and texture.
- Baking powder– Leavening agent to give the brownies some rise and stability.
- Zucchini– Finely shredded zucchini with moist of the moisture removed.
- Chocolate chips– Either dark chocolate chips or chopped chocolate work.
How to make zucchini brownies
Zucchini brownies are so easy to make: everything is mixed in just one bowl and there is no real kitchen gadgets used. The only thing to remember is to fold through the zucchini and chocolate chips at the end. Here is the basic idea for how to make the brownies (or see the recipe below for specifics):
- Mix the almond butter, maple syrup, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Mix through the cocoa powder and baking powder, then stir through the zucchini and chocolate chips.
- Transfer the mixture into a lined square pan and reserve some chocolate chips to place on top.
- Bake the brownies for 22-25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out mostly clean.
How do you prepare zucchini for brownies?
To ensure that the zucchini remains untraceable, here are some tips when preparing it:
- Use a food processor or cheese grater to shred it. This yields thinner strips throughout.
- After grating the zucchini, squeeze out most of the moisture from it, not all. A little moisture will allow the brownies to be extra fudgy in the middle.
- Use a paper towel to mop up any excess liquid before adding it to the batter.
- There is no need to peel the zucchini.
Tips to make the best recipe
- While Dutch processed cocoa can be used, natural cocoa is better and it yields the crackly tops we love.
- Do not over-bake the brownies as they will continue to cook as they are cooling down.
- Always reserve a handful of chocolate chips to top the brownies with, as that guarantees mouthfuls of chocolate in every bite!
Dietary swaps and variations
These brownies are super forgiving, so you can easily adapt them to other diets or change up their texture by adding nuts, frosting, and more:
- Make them eggless by replacing the eggs with one of these egg substitutes.
- For keto zucchini brownies, swap the maple syrup for keto maple syrup and use a brown sugar substitute.
- Add mix-ins like walnuts, coconut flakes, or even white chocolate chips.
- Substitute the almond butter for peanut butter, cashew butter, or a nut free alternative like tahini.
- Add some frosting, like a chocolate frosting or a healthy frosting.
- To store: Leftover brownies can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to two weeks.
- To freeze: Place the cooled baked brownies in an airtight container and store them in the freezer for up to six months.
More brownie recipes to try
Frequently Asked Questions
Zucchini doesn’t technically replace anything, but can enhance baked goods by adding moisture and added nutrition. For brownies and cakes, it makes them super moist.
When made using the suggested substitutions, these brownies can be suitable for a keto diet.
There is no need to peel zucchini before adding it to baked goods.
- 1 cup almond butter
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 medium zucchini grated
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line an 8 x 8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the almond butter, maple syrup, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. Add in the cocoa powder and baking powder. Fold through the zucchini and chocolate chips.
- Transfer your brownie batter to the lined pan and bake for 25-27 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out just clean from the center.
- Allow brownies to cool in the pan completely before slicing and serving.
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you bake these in a bread loaf pan not a square pan?
I used an 8×8 pan and they came out great. If you baked these in a loaf pan it would come out like bread.
Thanks, Theresa that was an error in the post, it has been amended.
Can I substitute honey or maple syrup for the sugar and if so how much would I use.
How did you remove the excess moisture in zucchine?
Hi! I squeeze it out in a paper towel 🙂
Oh my gosh these look so amazing and I cannot WAIT to make these over the weekend! Thank you!!!
I just came across your zucchini brownies sound yummy. I was wondering can you use cacao chocolate.
I haven’t tried, but feel free to experiment and see.
I can’t eat almonds, do you have a recommendation for another gluten-free flour to use?
Not that I’ve tried- You could experiment with something else and see!
These are really good! Will make these again but I will cut way back on the cocoa powder. To strong for my taste. That’s personal though. I also used regular butter. 🙂
How did you remove the excess moisture in zucchini?
Squeeze it out using a paper towel.
Hi! Thanks for sharing! I am wondering if I can just use oil or butter to replace almond butter?
These sound very good! I cannot see the zucchini shreds in the brownie pictures, though, do they just become a mush in the batter? I do not want to see the shreds when I cut it and eat it, so should I alter the recipe and blend the zucchini? Thanks.
Shredding it finely and you won’t notice the zucchini at all 🙂
I tried it with oat flour. And it tasted fabulous.
Thank you so so much for the recipe!
You are so welcome!
I made mine by using chia seeds instead of flax eggs . It turned out so good. Taste so good and yummy.
Thank you so much for great recipe.
Thank you for the feedback, Ash!
I loved the texture of these brownies, I didn’t have chocolate chips and they were still fudgy and delicious. However, I think I will cut back on the sweetener next time as I found them a bit too sweet for me. I wonder how these would taste with a teaspoon on instant coffee mixed in? I might try that too.
What did I do wrong? These came out super dry. The only change I made was using 1/2 cup coconut flour & 1/2 cup almond flour. When I combined the dry & liquid ingredients, it became the consistency of a tootsie roll and was nearly impossible to fold in the zucchini & chocolate chips. Help!
Because there is no coconut flour in this recipe.