Zucchini-Pecan Cake w/Cream Cheese Frosting

27 May

I made this in honor of National Pecan Day (4/14). It’s an adaptation of a recipe I found on bon appetit’s website by Ian Knauer who said “carrot cake was the inspiration for this delicious dessert”. It does have some similar qualities but is excellent in it’s own right.

Time: 1hr + cooling time        Serves: 8-10


  • Cake

  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 cup unbleached white flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 3/4 cup olive oil (not extra-virgin)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups grated zucchini
  • 3/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped + a handful for garnish.
  • Frosting

  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3 tbsp butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp+ orange zest

How to make it

  • Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line two 9″ diameter cake pans w/parchment paper. Spray with cooking spray.
  • Combine flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and alspice in medium mixing bowl. Blend well. In a separate large bowl, combine oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Mix until well blended. Fold in flour mixture, then zucchini and pecans. Divide evenly between two cake pans.
  • Bake cake about 45 minutes, or until tester inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on rack until completely cool (very important!) at least one hour. Turn cakes out and peel off parchment paper.
  • Frosting

  • Combine cream cheese and butter in a mixing bowl, using an electric mixer. Add vanilla, cinnamon, orange zest and sugar. Spread about half onto one top, place other cake on top lining up the sides as closely as you can. Use the rest of the frosting to cover the top & sides. Sprinkle a handful of pecans on top.

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