Zucchini, coconut and macadamia muffins

The zucchini version of carrot cake; moist and delicious.
The zucchini version of carrot cake; moist and delicious. Photo: Marina Oliphant

This is more or less a zucchini version of carrot cake. The sweetness of the zucchini is offset by the icing and lime.



100g sultanas

About 100ml coconut water

300g zucchini

150g caster sugar, plus 1 tbsp extra

2 large eggs (60g-70g each)

125ml olive oil

100g rice flour

100g gluten-free self-raising flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

100g desiccated coconut

1/2 tsp xanthan gum (from specialist food stores)

100g macadamia nuts, halved


250g cream cheese, at room temperature

1 lime, juiced

1 tsp vanilla extract

3 tbsp icing sugar

Shaved coconut, to garnish


1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line your muffin tin with paper liners.

2. In a small saucepan, add the sultanas with enough coconut water to just cover. Bring to a simmer for a minute or two, then leave to stand and plump up.

3. Finely julienne the zucchini, toss through a tablespoon of caster sugar and set aside - this will help the zucchini shed some water.

4. Place the eggs, oil and the remaining sugar in a large bowl and beat until pale and creamy.

5. Add the flours, baking soda, baking powder, coconut and xanthan gum. Beat until well combined.

6. Drain the zucchini well, squeezing lightly to extract moisture. Fold through the batter with the sultanas, taking a teaspoon or so of the liquid with them.

7. Fill your muffin tin, topping with the macadamias.

8. Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden. Cool in the tray.

9. For the icing, beat all the ingredients together. Ice the top of the cooled muffins and sprinkle with shaved coconut.

Drink Earl Grey tea