Fresh zucchini is already here, and this very abundant crop is the most versatile vegetable grown because you can enjoy it savory or sweet. Sliced zucchini sauteed in a hot pan with a squeeze of lemon, or grilled on an outdoor barbecue, makes the most amazing side dish. While freshly shredded zucchini folds so easily into baked goods like muffins, breads and cakes, giving them a super moist crumb and delicate taste.
Cake is one of those things that never goes out of fashion. You can enjoy it at birthdays and holidays, or “just because” after a good meal. Some may be intimidated to prepare an entire layer cake, but this recipe seems simpler than some. It’s probably because most of us are familiar with baking zucchini bread, and quick breads are closely related to cake.
This Zucchini Layer Cake, slathered with a thin coating of cream cheese frosting is the most scrumptious dessert I’ve had in a while. It’s different than zucchini bread because it’s light and airy, and it has frosting! Doesn’t frosting tend to make most things taste even better, just saying?
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon allspice
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 medium zucchini shredded, about 1 1/2 cups
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
8 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8-inch baking pans, set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice and salt, set aside.
- In a stand mixer or large bowl, mix on medium speed granulated sugar, brown sugar and oil for 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes until just combined.
- Add dry ingredients and mix on low until just combined, about 1 minute. Remove bowl and add zucchini. Mix by hand until incorporated into batter. Pour equally into prepared pans. Bake for 28-32 minutes, or until a toothpick comes clean.
- Remove and let cool for 15 minutes, before inverting onto a wire rack. Let cool for 1 hour before frosting.
- In a stand mixer or large bowl, add cream cheese and butter. Mix on low speed for 2 minutes. Add powdered sugar and vanilla, whisk on medium speed until creamy and smooth, about 2 minutes.
- Place first layer of cake on cake stand or plate, and dollop with 1/3 of frosting, smooth frosting out to edges. Place second cake layer on top and dollop with remaining frosting. Spread frosting to edges and over sides of cake for a “naked” look in places, and swirl thicker on top. Refrigerate cake, remove 2-3 hours before serving. Enjoy!