Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake

39 reviews / 4.5 average

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake may or may not be the best thing to come out of my kitchen all week, but I need to start this post with some b-a-d news:

House #2, the Charmer, sold.

After 5 days on the market. To someone else. The same night I posted about it. Dramatic sad mopey face.

Even though the Charmer isn't even an option anymore, can I just say how much I loved and appreciated all your advice? There were a few comments that seriously honestly for real might have swayed our house-buying decision one way or the other, and I mean literally just A COMMENT, from you sweet readers, across the internet world somewhere, which is just weird and amazing. You all are a very house savvy bunch, so thanks a mil for taking the time to leave your two cents about which house we should buy.

The funny thing about this is that now that the Charmer has sold, we don't feel any special pull towards buying the Happy Easy home. I guess it just wasn't meant to be with that old cutie and maybe it's a good sign that we should keep looking. I'll keep you posted, you house lovers you!

And when we DO find a house, hey! I know what to make for our We Finally Found a House celebration. It starts with Cinnamon Sugar and ends with Zucchini Coffee Cake.

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake on a blue plate with a fork.

So do you remember my jumbo ZUCCHINI? All caps for size representation.

Giant Zucchini on a woman's head.

Here's how I've used it, by fifths.

1/5: Zucchini Parmesan
1/5: Zucchini Pancakes
1/5: sauteed veggie salad
2/5: Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake

I made this Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake twice - get it? 2/5? - and the first time I didn't make it with the middle layer of cinnamon sugar. Like, it didn't exist in my brain yet.

But then the second time I got this food vision for an extra cinnamon sugar layer through the middle because I like things that are have sticky sugary middle layers, yeah? Go look at one of the pictures and see if you can spot that little layer in there. It's subtle, like the kind of thing where you might not notice it at first bite and then BOOM! You get a forkful that has that sweet layer running through it and your world is rocked. If you don't like sticky cinnamon sugar middle layers in your zucchini coffee cake, you're allowed to leave it out. Buuut that does make you a weirdo.

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake on a fork.

PS. Possibly even more than middle layers, I like LOVE cinnamon sugar top layers. For the heavenly top crust on this zucchini coffee cake, the butter and sugar and cinnamon get crumb-ed, spread over the top, and baked into some kind of wonderful cinnamon sugar crunchyyy. There you are going about your business, and all of a sudden you find yourself eating this thin crunchy cinnamon sugar layer on a cake that sort of melts in your mouth and that just so happens to have VEGGIEZ in it, and I bet you're having a lot of fun.

This is one of those cakes that you can eat for breakfast, morning snack time, after school snack time, bedtime snack time, dessert, and come to think of it, anytime in your whole life.

I adore anytime cake.

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake on a blue plate.
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Zucchini Cake Recipe

Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake


This Cinnamon Sugar Zucchini Coffee Cake is so simple! It takes about 10 minutes to make and has two layers of cinnamon sugar. Mmm.



For the cake

  • 1 1/3 cups brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup oil (I used olive oil but Canola oil works too)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup buttermilk (you can sub milk + vinegar, even almond milk!)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (I just eyeballed a little pinch)
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

For the topping

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Press or drain the excess moisture out of the zucchini shreds. Mix the cake ingredients in order given.
  3. Combine the topping ingredients with your fingers or in a food processor to make a crumbly topping. Pour half of the batter into a greased 9×13 cake pan. Cover with half of the crumbs. Repeat with the remaining batter and topping.
  4. Bake for 45 minutes. The top will be crunchy and textured and the cake will bounce back when you gently press it. And then it will be gone fast.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: cinnamon sugar zucchini coffee cake, zucchini coffee cake, coffee cake recipe

Happy Labor Day to all the laborers! Now go make a cake.

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  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    Oh man! Such a bummer about the charmer!! So sorry, but I bet there is something even better out there for you guys!! Plus, You will have fun finding it!

    Ok now this cake?? The cinnamon sugar layer totally sold me. Heck yes!! It is the perfect still summer, but kind of fall coffee cake and I love it!

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    AH! I have that zucchini’s first cousin at home! So far I’ve gotten a few loaves of bread and this crazy southwest stuffing. I bought it for $1. I mean, who could resist?!
    PS. Your perfect house is waiting. I just know it!

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hi Lindsay,

    I have to admit, I’m one of the few people out there who have never baked anything with zucchini in it! Well, except maybe lasagna and other Italians style oven dishes… but nothing sweet.
    This coffee cake looks amazing though! I guess it’s time for me to fire up my oven!

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    After this week’s posts you could do a zucchini cookbook next right? These are great, especially the zucchini parm.

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I second this idea! My mom always grows monstrous zucchinis every year and I am always looking for new ideas to cook or bake with it! A cookbook dedicated to zucchini would be fantastic!

        1. Skillful Cook Logo

          Just to clarify, is it light or dark brown sugar and the size of egg should be large?

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    Good luck with your house hunting! I’m sure the perfect one is just waiting for you to find it 🙂
    Anytime cake really is the best and this looks so delicious! I love coffee cake and I love zucchini bread, so this mashup is just genius. Thanks for the recipe!

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    Cake with zuke is always SO Good and so moist. This looks excellent especially b/c of all that cinn-sugar topping. YUM!

    And the house buying stuff – interesting to know that properties are flying off the market in 5 days in Mpls. I dont think that’s happening yet in San Diego. I hope the perfect house for you guys turns up. I know it will 🙂

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    Sorry about ‘The Charmer’, but you are right….keep looking. I didn’t say this in my original advice, but you will know the right house when you find it. The gap between your head & your heart will be small, and you and Bjork will agree.

    Now, about this coffee cake….THANK YOU!! So many coffee cake recipes are for a wimpy 8×8 or 9×9 pan. And who could resist a middle layer of cinnamony, sugary, gooey goodness?!?!?!?! This will be made soon. 🙂

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    Glad to see you put that ginormous zucchini to good use! I love the idea of adding zucchini to coffee cake, I’ve only thought to make zucchini bread before but now I’ll have to give this a shot.

    Are you all zucchini’d out yet?!?

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    I’ve been baking with zucchini like crazy lately, and now I will have to add this recipe to the list to try next. Looks pretty much like perfection!

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    Yum. I’ve made zucchini bread, but never thought of putting it into coffee cake. Such a fab way to sneak it in there for my boys…who happen to LOVE coffee cake (just ask Starbucks.)
    I’m on it.
    Much aloha!

  11. Skillful Cook Logo

    I am making this tonight! I’ve gotten lots of zucchini from our CSA and am getting tired of sautéing it, frying it….but now I am super excited to make this!! Thanks!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        It’s all gone now and I don’t remember! 🙂 Anything really light tasting would work. There’s not really that much in the cake so I didn’t think it was a noticeable taste.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      I’ve made a LOT of zucchini baked goods this summer… And this one my family RAVED about and gobbled up immediately.
      They needed me to make another the following night. Absolutely delicious