Cooking with Miranda

Cooking with Miranda: Grandma’s Chocolate Zucchini Cake

I am ridiculously lucky. I had most of my great grandparents on my mom’s side of the family through my childhood and well into my early adulthood. I was raised surrounded large extended family of warm, wonderful, and loving people; my Grandpa Chuck’s siblings and their kids and grandkids. Great-Grandma Muhs fed them all.

It’s what she did. You went to her house and she fed you. She was the embodiment of the “love people and cook them tasty food” magnet on my fridge. She had two entrances to her white farm house with the black shutters, one into her living room and one into her kitchen. We always came in through the kitchen; that’s how important her kitchen was to my family. I can’t remember all the meals I had around her brown laminate table with the vinyl lace tablecloth sitting on Sears Catalogs to boost myself up.

I remember canning with her, my job was snapping her green beans. I remember her fried chicken and chocolate pie. Most of all, zucchini reminds me of her. She had the biggest garden and like most Midwesterners, she always had a ton of zucchini in the summer. This meant zucchini bread (my favorite.) It also meant chocolate zucchini cake. I’m lucky enough to have her recipe, because according to her notes on the recipe this one is “Real Good.”

Grandma’s Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Serving Size:
1 cake
60 minutes


  • 1/2 cup of oleo softened (I used butter)
  • 1/2 cup of oil (I used sunflower, Grandma probably used vegetable)
  • 1 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sour milk (I guessed that this might be buttermilk)
  • 2 1/2 sifted flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups diced zucchini (I shredded it)
  • 4 TBS cocoa
  • 1 cup of chocolate chips to pour on top of cake
  • 1 cup of nuts (optional)
Grandma’s recipe in her own handwriting from her recipe box.


  1. (Not in the original, but preheat your oven to 350.)
  2. Cream oleo/butter, oil, and sugar. Add vanilla, eggs, and sour milk. Beat well with mixer.
  3. Sift all of the dry ingredients together (sifted flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon.)
  4. Add to creamed mixture and beat well with a mixer.
  5. Stir in zucchini.
  6. Put in greased pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips and nuts (optional.)
  7. Bake on 350 for 40 to 50 minutes.

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