Zucchini-Walnut Cake


No need to add icing--shredded zucchini and lemon syrup make this summery cake moist enough that you won¿t even miss it! Just top with squash blossoms and this cake will steal the dessert show.

Zucchini-Walnut Cake
Photo: Blaine Moats
Hands On Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 10 mins
1 9x13-inch cake


  • 2 medium zucchini (1 pound total), ends trimmed

  • 2 cup all-purpose flour

  • ½ cup walnuts, finely chopped

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

  • 3 eggs

  • 1 ¼ cup sugar

  • cup sunflower or vegetable oil

  • ¼ cup butter, melted and slightly cooled

  • 2 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

  • ¾ cup buttermilk

  • Lemon Syrup

  • Zucchini blossoms, optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 13×9-inch baking pan or line with parchment paper.

  2. Using large holes of a box grater, shred zucchini. (You should have 2 cups packed.) Transfer zucchini to a clean kitchen towel. Roll up; squeeze out as much moisture as possible.

  3. In a medium bowl whisk together flour, walnuts, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside.

  4. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, sugar, oil, butter, vanilla, and citrus zests. Stir in zucchini and half of flour mixture, mixing well after each addition. Stir in buttermilk, then remaining flour mixture until just combined. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

  5. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Transfer pan to a wire rack. Brush top of warm cake with Lemon Syrup; cool in pan. If desired, top with zucchini blossoms.

  6. Lemon Syrup: In a small saucepan bring three 3×1/2-inch strips lemon zest, 1/2 cup lemon juice, and 1/2 cup sugar to boiling over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat; let cool. Strain syrup; discard solids.

Lemon Syrup:

2 to 3, 3x1/2-inch strips lemon zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar

Combine the lemon zest and juice and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to boiling over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat; let cool. Strain syrup through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl; discard solids.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

398 Calories
21g Fat
49g Carbs
6g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 398
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 58mg 19%
Sodium 359mg 16%
Total Carbohydrate 49g 18%
Total Sugars 32g
Protein 6g
Vitamin C 11.1mg 56%
Calcium 44mg 3%
Iron 1.5mg 8%
Potassium 174mg 4%
Folate, total 60.1mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.1mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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