A simple flavorful recipe for Zucchini Cakes with jalapeño and lime. Serve them up with Lime Crema and a hearty green salad for a tasty, low-calorie, vegetarian meal, tasty appetizer or side dish!

 Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal! #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

Have an abundance of zucchini or summer squash? This is the time of year when zucchini and summer squash seem to pile up, and that’s when I like to whip up these flavorful guys – Zucchini Patties with Jalapeño and Lime.  We’ve served them as a tasty side dish to grilled dishes or served them up as a light vegetarian main. My husband never ever tires them, no matter how much zucchini we’ve had on rotation. We’ve been making Zucchini Bread, Zucchini Fritters and well, pretty much everything on our 30 Best Zucchini Recipes list. 

Zucchini Patties Ingredients: 

Here is a list of what you’ll need to make for Zucchini Cakes.

  • Zucchini: Freshly shredded zucchini is the star ingredient in these flavorful cakes. You can also use yellow summer squash or a mix! You can grate it by hand using a box grater or use a food processor for bigger batches.
  • Jalapeño: Add a hint of heat to the zucchini cakes with some fresh diced jalapeño.
  • Cilantro: Fresh cilantro adds a burst of freshness and adds to the vibrant flavors of the zucchini cakes. But if you dislike it sub basil or fresh dill.
  • Lime zest: Zest a lime to extract its fragrant oils and add a bright citrusy flavor to the zucchini cakes.
  • Cheese- we used grated cheddar, but mozzarella or any mely cheese will work.
  • Eggs: give the cake structure and loft.
  • Baking powder– help them puff up a bit!
  • Spices: Enhance the taste of the cakes with a blend of your favorite spices. You can experiment with options such as cumin, paprika, or garlic powder.
  • Panko bread crumbs– using plain panko keeps the texture of the cakes light ( vs. flour)
A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal! #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

Zucchini Patties Instructions

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to make Zucchini Cakes:

  1. Prepare the Zucchini: Start by grating the zucchini. You can use a box grater or a food processor for larger batches. Once grated, sprinkle some salt over the zucchini and let it sit for a few minutes over a strainer or colander. This will help draw out excess moisture.
  2. Drain the Zucchini: After letting the zucchini sit, use a clean kitchen towel or cheesecloth to squeeze out the as much liquid as you can. This step is crucial for preventing the cakes from becoming soggy.
  3. Make the Batter: In a mixing bowl, combine the grated zucchini, diced jalapeño, chopped cilantro, lime zest, beaten eggs, baking powder and spices and cheese. Mix well until all the ingredients are evenly incorporated.
  4. Add Panko Bread Crumbs: Gradually incorporate the panko bread crumbs into the zucchini mixture. This will help bind the ingredients together and provide a light, crispy texture. Stir until the mixture holds its shape when pressed.
  5. Heat the Pan: Heat a non-stick skillet or frying pan over medium-low heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil and allow it to heat up.
  6. Form the Cakes: For 1/4 cup balls pressing together with your hands. Gently place the cakes into the hot skillet, leaving some space between each cake. Flatten with a spatula.
  7. Cook Until Golden Brown: Cook the zucchini cakes for about 4 minutes on each side or until they turn golden brown and crispy. You will need to work in batches depending on the size of your pan. Keep them warm in a 350F if you like ( or toaster oven).
  8. Serve and Enjoy: Once cooked, transfer the zucchini cakes to a serving plate. Serve them with a drizzle of chipotle mayo or lime crema for extra flavor. These delicious cakes pair well with a side of leafy green salad or other salads. Leftovers can be stored it he fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container.

And that’s it! You now have a delightful batch of homemade Zucchini Cakes ready to be enjoyed. Bon appétit!

A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal! #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

Ways to serve Zucchini patties

There are several delicious ways to serve zucchini cakes. Here are a few ideas:

  1. With Chipotle Mayo: Drizzle some smoky chipotle mayo over the zucchini cakes for a spicy and flavorful twist.
  2. With Lime Crema: Top the zucchini cakes with tangy lime crema (recipe notes) for a refreshing and creamy element.
  3. Alongside a Leafy Green Salad: Serve the zucchini cakes alongside a fresh and crisp leafy green salad for a light nutritious meal.
  4. As an Appetizer: Make smaller zucchini cakes and serve them as appetizers with a dipping sauce.
  5. As a side dish: serve alongside grilled mains.
  6. In a Wrap or Pita Sandwich: Use the zucchini cakes as filling in a wrap or pita sandwich with lettuce, cucumber, micorgreeens, tomatoes, or other veggies, with tzatziki sauce.

I love the Zucchini Cakes with a drizzle of smoky Chipotle Mayo (which you can keep vegan).

A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime. #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

I highly recommend making a double batch and saving the leftovers for midweek snacking! I just reaheat in our toaster oven- so easy.

A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal! #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

And if you are curious…

Here are the top five health benefits of zucchini:

  1. Rich in nutrients: Zucchini is low in calories but packed with essential nutrients like vitamin C, potassium, and manganese. These nutrients help support a healthy immune system. These zucchini cakes are pretty low-calorie!
  2. Weight management: Due to its high water content and low calorie count, zucchini can be a great addition to a weight loss or weight management diet. It provides a feeling of fullness and satiety without adding excessive calories.
  3. Digestive health: Zucchini is a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and prevents constipation. Including zucchini in your diet can help promote a healthy digestive system and maintain regular bowel movements.
  4. Heart health: Zucchini is rich in antioxidants like vitamin C and beta-carotene, which help reduce inflammation and protect the heart from oxidative stress. The fiber content in zucchini also aids in reducing cholesterol levels, thus promoting heart health.
  5. Hydration and skin health: Zucchini has a high water content, which helps keep the body hydrated. Proper hydration is essential for maintaining healthy and glowing skin. Additionally, the presence of vitamin C and other antioxidants in zucchini can also contribute to healthy skin by protecting it against damage from free radicals.

Incorporating zucchini into your meals can offer numerous health benefits and contribute to an overall nutritious diet. Enjoy the versatility and goodness of this delicious vegetable!

More Zucchini recipes to try!

Please enjoy and let us know what you think in the comments below.


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A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal! #zucchinifritters #zucchinicakes #zucchinirecipes

Zucchini Cakes (Shredded Zucchini Patties)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 13 reviews
  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 10 cakes 1x
  • Category: main, appetizer,
  • Method: stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian


A simple healthy recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime, topped with Chipotle Aioli. Serve this with a leafy green salad for a flavorful vegetarian meal!


Units Scale
  • 1 lb zucchini, grated (2 medium zucchini)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced ( or 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic)
  • 2 green onions, finely sliced
  • 23 teaspoons chopped jalapeno (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro (or sub Italian parsley)
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 extra large egg (or two small eggs)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese ( or pepper jack, mozzarella)
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs (use plain)


  1. Grate zucchini using a box grater (or a food processor with the grater attachment)
  2. Toss zucchini with the salt and place in a strainer over a bowl letting the liquid drain while you prep the remaining ingredients.
  3. In a medium bowl, add the garlic, scallions, jalapeño, cilantro, lime zest, cumin and smoked paprika. Mix. Add the egg and mix it in well. Stir in the baking powder and cheese.
  4. Press the remaining liquid out of the zucchini with your fingers, dump it onto a thin kitchen towel, gather up the sides and wring the zucchini out well!  Add it to the bowl, stir and fold in the bread crumbs. You will have a very thick batter.
  5. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, spoon 1/4 cup portions of the mixture into the skillet, creating golf ball-sized rounds, flatten slightly, lower heat and sear each side until deeply golden and puffed in the middle (feel free to finish or keep warm in a 375F oven.)
  6. Serve with  Chipotle Mayo or Lime Crema.


If making larger batches- keep warm in a 375 F Oven.

Lime Crema – whisk ½ cup sour cream with 2 tablespoons lime juice and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Add ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika or if you like heat, chipotle powder. Feel free to loosen it with water if overly thick.


  • Serving Size: 2 cakes (without sauce)
  • Calories: 132
  • Sugar: 0.6 g
  • Sodium: 712.2 mg
  • Fat: 7.1 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 9.8 g
  • Fiber: 0.6 g
  • Protein: 7 g
  • Cholesterol: 68.4 mg

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  1. Just ate it ! I used halloumi instead of cheddar and it went very well. Will definitely redo !
    Thank you for this great recipe 😍

  2. I followed the directions and even added more breadcrumbs but the patties didn’t stay together.

    1. Oh shoot! Sorry Deborah. Didi you change anything else? I will have to remake this, it has been a while! I’ll get back and update the recipe later today.

  3. These are fantastic! What a hit. The flavor is excellent and really enhanced by the Chipotle Aioli. I seared and then baked them since I tripled the recipe. Next time I will sear at a lower temp since some were burned.

  4. These were fabulous!!! I got a bit discouraged when they kind of fell apart in the frying pan, but turned the oven on 400, put some parchment on a cookie sheet and they came out AMAZING!!! I did 25 minutes total. The sauce is so good too!!

  5. These cakes are super delicious, packed with flavor and great texture. I have tried many of Sylvia’s zucchini recipes and these are my favorite! I’m a big fan of the lime, jalapeño, and cilantro combo.

    Although this is my first comment, I am a huge fan of your work. I check in every week to see what you are cooking up. I make at least one, if not more recipes from you a week and let me tell you, you never disappoint. Every single dish is delicious!
    When I found your website my partner was vegan and I was not. I love how you make almost every dish to accommodate the vegans. I love cooking vegan. I consider myself Vegan Plus, vegan base and then I throw in some meat or cheese. He now eats meat 🤗 and our menu option have expanded. Thank you soo much for creating “Feasting at Home”. It is my home base for my weekly meal prepping and I tell all my dinner guests where to find you.


  6. These are outstanding, especially with the chipotle Mayo. The recipe is definitely a keeper, especially during zucchini season! The only “criticism” I would have is that the main ingredient is listed as a “1 lb. zucchini, grated.” That doesn’t”t easily translate when using zucchini from the garden, which are often large and need to have the seeds scraped out before grating and have large stems which need to be cut. It would be MUCH more helpful to list the weight (most helpful!) or volume of the GRATED zucchini. I needed to multiply the recipe to feed this as a main course for several hungry adults for dinner. I ended up using 960 gm. of grated zucchini and multiplied the remaining ingredients by 2.5. They tasted great, but I’m still not certain if my proportions were correct. As done, I used 3 large eggs because I thought the ‘batter’ was a bit dry. Anyway, the amount of GRATED zucchini would be much more helpful than the weight before processing!

  7. Another delicious recipe, Sylvia! I have an abundance of zucchini and was looking for something different – found it! The flavors are excellent, and I will definitely be making them again. Has anyone tried freezing them?

  8. As usual, another terrific recipe. My husband and I ate these at different times. Without me influencing him he stated they had the texture/reminded him of crab cakes. I thought the same thing when I’d eaten mine earlier! I had some Wasabi 1000 island dressing I’d made so topped them with this. Terrific! I even recycled the drained off liquid by adding it to the vegetable broth I’d also made that day. ☺Thanks for this recipe.

  9. I used almond flour and a dollop of goat cheese because it was what I had on hand and they turned out amazing! I was worried about them tasting too almond-ey and grainy or maybe too acidic with goat cheese and lime but it worked. <3

  10. 10 out of 10, would make again and again and again!
    This recipe is so tasty and easy! After waiting an hour for the zucchini to drain, I used my french press to really squeeze out any extra water. Perfect cakes!
    I also modified the chipotle mayo and used sour cream instead (minus the water, too) and it was fantastic.

  11. 5 STAR. I loved these zucchini cakes. I used gluten free bread crumbs and had lovely results. I didn’t have a lime so I substituted a lemon and I did not have green onions and therefore used a shallot. In making these cakes: make the cakes small, they were somewhat fragile and heavy to flip if they weren’t small and don’t overcrowd the skillet.
    I made the recipe for just under 3x and got about 40 cakes. Will try these next with an egg alternative! Thank you for the recipe.

  12. This is an amazing recipe. Loved it!! Everything I have tried so far from this site has been outstanding! I used chick pea crumbs and chick pea flour to keep it gluten free though.

  13. I love every recipe I have made from this site but this one was tough. The cakes all fell apart and were too oily. I would like to try it again but just bake them. The flavors were good though!

    1. Oily? Hummm, I can’t think of why they would be oily? Did you salt and drain the zucchini to remove the water? I wonder if that could be it?

  14. I tried this recipe with gluten free bread crumbs. I actually had gf croutons (Ian’s brand) in the pantry so I blended those into bread crumbs. I used a little more than 1/2 cup because the mixture seemed too wet. The zucchini cakes came out beautifully. Very light and flavorful.

  15. These sound so delicious and are a perfect use for all of my zucchini piling up! And yes, egg seems like it always does the trick for things like these but would love to figure out a vegan alternative. Thanks for the recipe.

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