Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

from 6 votes

Finely shredded zucchini, which is barely noticeable, is folded into a tried and true oatmeal cookie recipe. The result is the softest, chewiest Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies to ever cross your lips!

A top-down view of oatmeal zucchini cookies studded with chocolate chips.

Step aside, chocolate chip zucchini bread. There’s a new veggie-packed favorite in town: Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. They’re moist, tender and packed with wholesome ingredients. Best of all, you can’t even taste the zucchini! 

These cookies are a fantastic (and delicious!) way to make the most of your garden zucchini surplus. Plus, one of the key benefits of zucchini oatmeal cookies is their versatility. You can customize them with various mix-ins, such as chocolate chips, dried fruits or nuts, to add extra texture and flavor. These cookies are sure to become a favorite among both kids and adults alike!

Kelly’s Note: You can’t taste the zucchini, so even the fussiest of taste-testers can enjoy their sweets… with an added side of greens!

Why You’ll Love These Cookies

  • Irresistibly soft and chewy (just like my classic chocolate chip cookies). The addition of zucchini to the cookie dough lends moisture and tenderness to each bite. It keeps the cookies soft and prevents them from becoming dry, even days after baking.
  • Hidden veggie goodness. Perfect for picky eaters, including children who often shy away from vegetables. These cookies effortlessly disguise the zucchini, making it a win-win for parents and kids alike (find more inspiration for picky eaters with my guide on Creative Food Ideas for Kids).
  • Loaded with hearty oats and studded with chocolate chips.
  • Perfect for various occasions, whether you’re looking for a sweet snack, a lunchbox treat or a crowd-pleasing summer dessert.
  • Freezer-friendly. Bake up a big batch and stash the extras in your freezer for future cookie cravings. They’ll stay fresh and ready to enjoy whenever you need a sweet treat fix!

Key Ingredients

A top-down view of various sizes of clear bowls containing ingredients for zucchini oatmeal cookies, including all-purpose flour, oats, eggs, baking soda, salt, vanilla extract, ground cinnamon, shredded zucchini, brown sugar, sugar and unsalted butter.
  • Unsalted butter: Butter adds richness and flavor to the cookies. If you prefer, you can substitute it with an equal amount of coconut oil for a dairy-free option.
  • All-purpose flour: All-purpose flour gives the cookies structure and texture. If you want to make the cookies gluten-free, you can try using a gluten-free flour such as Cup4Cup Multipurpose Flour instead.
  • Oats: Just like my popular monster cookies recipe, oats provide texture and chewiness to the cookies. For this recipe, I recommend using old-fashioned rolled oats. Quick and instant oats can be used as a substitute, but the texture of the cookies may be slightly different.
  • Cinnamon: Ground cinnamon adds warmth and depth of flavor. If you’re not a fan of cinnamon or don’t have it on hand, you can omit it or replace it with a different spice, such as nutmeg or pumpkin spice, for a different flavor profile.
  • Chocolate chips: Just like my all-time favorite Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread, chocolate chips add gooey pockets of chocolatey goodness to each and every bite. You can use semi-sweet, dark or milk chocolate chips based on your preference.
  • Zucchini: One medium zucchini should do the trick. The zucchini does not have to be peeled prior to grating. Simply grate it on the small hole of a box grater then ring out as much moisture as possible by squeezing it firmly in your hands. Measure out 1 cup after squeezing out the moisture. 

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

Mix-Ins

Get creative and combine multiple mix-ins to create a unique and personalized cookie. Just be mindful of the total amount of mix-ins to ensure the dough doesn’t become too heavy or dry.

  • Nuts: Chopped nuts such as walnuts or pecans add a delightful crunch and extra texture to the cookies.
  • Shredded coconut: If you enjoy the tropical flavor of coconut, consider adding shredded coconut to the cookie dough.
  • Dried fruits: Raisins or dried cranberries add a burst of flavor and a touch of natural sweetness. If you love oatmeal raisin cookies, try ½ chocolate chips and ½ raisins in this recipe.
  • Baking chips: Peanut butter chips or butterscotch chips would be delicious alternatives to chocolate chips.

How to Make Zucchini Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe is straightforward and beginner-friendly. You don’t need any special equipment or extensive baking experience to whip up a batch. Here’s an overview of the process (you’ll find detailed instructions in the recipe card below).

  1. Preheat the oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  2. Cream the butter and sugars. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the unsalted butter, packed light brown sugar and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Use an electric mixer or a stand mixer for this step.
  3. Add the wet ingredients. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat until well combined.
  4. Combine the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking soda, ground cinnamon and salt.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture. Add the flour mixture to the large bowl containing the wet ingredients and beat just until combined. Then, add the oats, grated zucchini and chocolate chips and beat until combined.
A top-down view of a large clear bowl of a stand mixer with oatmeal cookie batter topped with finely shredded zucchini and chocolate chips.
  1. Scoop the dough. Using two spoons or an ice cream scoop, drop rounded portions of dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Leave some space between each cookie to allow for spreading during baking.
Unbaked mounds of zucchini oatmeal cookies topped with chocolate chips on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
  1. Bake to golden perfection. Place the baking sheets in the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown around the edges. The centers should still be slightly soft. Avoid overbaking for a moist and chewy texture.
  2. Cool and enjoy! Remove the baking sheets from the oven and allow the cookies to cool on the sheets for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, dig in!

Pro Tip: Garnish with large-flake sea salt for the perfect balance of sweet and salty flavors.

Recipe Tips & Tricks

  • Strain the Zucchini: Ring out as much moisture as possible by squeezing the zucchini firmly in your hands. This step will prevent the cookies from becoming too watery and help maintain the desired texture.
  • Measure After: Measure out the shredded zucchini after squeezing out the moisture.
  • Don’t Overmix the Dough: When combining the dry and wet ingredients, mix until just combined. Overmixing can lead to tough cookies.
  • Allow for Proper Spacing: Leave enough space between each portion of dough on the baking sheets to allow for spreading during baking. This ensures the cookies bake evenly and do not merge into one another. Generally, space the dough portions about 2 inches apart.
  • Monitor Baking Time: Keep a close eye on the cookies as they bake. Baking time can vary depending on factors such as your oven’s temperature accuracy and the size of the cookies. Start checking for doneness around the minimum recommended baking time. The cookies should be golden brown around the edges but still slightly soft in the center.
A child's hand reaches for a zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookie.

How to Store

To maintain freshness, store the zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies in an airtight container at room temperature. They can stay fresh for several days.

Alternatively, you can freeze the cookies. Freezing them is a great option if you want to make a larger batch or if you have leftovers that you’d like to preserve. Once the cookies have completely cooled, I recommend flash-freezing them on a baking sheet for about 1 to 2 hours before transferring them to a freezer-safe container or bag. The cookies can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy the cookies, remove the desired number of cookies from the freezer and let them thaw at room temperature for about 30 minutes to an hour, or until they are fully thawed.

Pro Tip: Allow the cookies to cool completely on a wire rack before storing them. This helps them firm up and retain their texture. If you store warm cookies in an airtight container, they can become soft or lose their crispness.

A close-up view of zucchini oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I taste the zucchini in the cookies?

No, the zucchini in Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies adds moisture and texture without a distinct flavor.

How do I prepare the zucchini for the cookies?

To prepare the zucchini, grate it using the small hole-side of a box grater. After grating, it’s important to strain the zucchini to remove excess moisture. Feel free to peel the zucchini before grating, but I personally don’t.

Can I substitute quick oats for old-fashioned oats in cookies?

Yes, quick oats can be used as a substitute in this recipe, but the texture of the cookies may be slightly different.

Can I freeze the cookie dough or the baked cookies?

Absolutely! I recommend freezing the dough once you have scooped it so that it’s easy to grab anywhere from 1 to a dozen balls of dough and get warm cookies in minutes!

More Zucchini Recipes You’ll Love

Three perfect rows of zucchini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies garnished with large-flake sea salt.
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Dessert

Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Make the most of your summer zucchini surplus with these irresistibly soft and chewy Zucchini Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies!
Author: Kelly Senyei
5 from 6 votes
A top-down view of oatmeal zucchini cookies studded with chocolate chips.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes
Servings 24 cookies

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups oats
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup grated, strained zucchini (See Kelly’s Note)

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter, brown sugar and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat until combined.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. 
  • Add the flour mixture to the stand mixer and beat just until combined. Add the oats, grated zucchini and chocolate chips and beat until combined.
  • Using an ice cream scoop or two spoons, portion out 2-tablespoon scoops of batter and drop them onto the baking sheets, spacing the mounds about 2 inches apart.
  • Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow them to cool for 2 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.

Kelly’s Notes

  • The zucchini does not have to be peeled prior to grating. Simply grate it on the small hole of a box grater then ring out as much moisture as possible by squeezing it firmly in your hands. Measure out 1 cup after squeezing out the moisture. 

Nutrition

Calories: 189kcal, Carbohydrates: 29g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 25mg, Sodium: 109mg, Potassium: 78mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 16g, Vitamin A: 165IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 28mg, Iron: 1mg

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5 from 6 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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    1. Hi Lucy! I bake with unsalted butter 99% of the time because it allows me to easily control the salt level of any recipe.