Monday, July 9, 2012

JoMo's Zucchini Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Icing

My mom, aka JoMo or Nana, has been making this cake since before I was born. A site to behold, isn't it? It was the much anticipated payoff for hours spent weeding our massive vegetable garden and tolerating the plethora of beets it produced. Now, every year as soon as the zucchini harvest starts rolling into the farmers market, I get the craving.
Most of the time I strive for Roo-safe baking. It's not always easy due to his egg allergy. The texture on this baby is so perfect, however, that I couldn't bring myself to use Egg Replacer, which made the whole ordeal scandalously indulgent. Roo helped grate zucchini and mixed in non-egg ingredients but he couldn't eat the finished product. Luckily I had plenty of Divvies Choco-lot Brownie Cookies in the freezer.

Of course you could forgo the frosting and bake this in bread pans for a more traditional breakfast style quick bread but don't do it! The voluptuous curves, thick dribble of cream cheese icing weeping down the sides, and a sprinkling of citrus zest elevate this humble quick bread to an entirely different plane.
JoMo's Zucchini Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Icing

3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 and 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups raw, unpeeled, grated zucchini
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 cups flour, sifted

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl beat the eggs until foamy. Gradually beat in oil and sugar. Add grated zucchini, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix well. Gradually blend in flour, mixing well after each addition.

2. Pour batter into a greased 3-quart Bundt pan and bake for one hour or until the cake tests done and begins to leave the sides of the pan. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife and turn onto a cake rack to cool.

For the Lemon Cream Cheese Icing

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. lemon zest, divided
3 cups powdered sugar

1. Beat the cream cheese, vanilla, lemon juice, and 1tsp. lemon zest in a large bowl. Gradually mix in powdered sugar stopping at your desired consistency. For zucchini cake I like to keep the frosting thick but just little runny so it will drip down the sides.
2. When the cake is completely cool, spoon icing on top, letting it ooze and drip down the sides. Sprinkle with remaining lemon zest.


  1. oh wow, this looks divinely delicious & perfectly moist!

    1. Thanks, Ally! One of my most favorite summertime desserts - not that I wouldn't also eat it in January :)

  2. this looks amazing. And so much better than traditional zucchini bread! We are just starting to get zucchini in our garden, and now I know I have to try this recipe! :)

    1. I know! Once the zucchini starts rolling in it comes fast and furious. I love the elegance of a zucchini cake for a summer party. Enjoy it!

  3. The cup of oil followed by 2 1/2 cups of sugar always makes me cringe - but I guess that what makes it so good. Jomo herself made this for us a couple weeks ago!

    1. I know, health food it is not but so tasty! I wish Roo could/would eat it. He could use all that oil and sugar, of course he'd rather have a dum dum or a hershey's kiss.