A simple flavorful recipe for Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime. Serve them up with Chipotle Aioli and a hearty green salad for a tasty, low-calorie, vegetarian meal. 

 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

This is the time of year when zucchini and summer squash seem to pile up and many of us have already had our fill. That’s when I like to whip up these flavorful guys – Zucchini Cakes with Jalapeño and Lime.  Zucchini is grated either by hand or in a food processor ( wayyyyyy easier) and salted and drained. Then it’s mixed with jalapeño, lime zest and fresh herbs. I use an egg to bind it, along with bread crumbs, which seem to give these the best texture. Feel free to add cheese or leave it out for a lighter version.

Believe me when I tell you I’ve tried to come up with a vegan version.  They come out…just ok.  The flavor is good but the texture fails. There is something about the egg that gives these a lightness and a bit of loft that is hard to replicate. But feel free to try your hand at it, and leave notes in the comments, because I would truly looooooooove a vegan version.

Sear them up and serve with a drizzle of Chipotle Mayo or sour cream. So tasty…. and perfect alongside a leafy green salad. A delicious, low-calorie, vegetarian meal.

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 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

Once the zucchini is salted and drained, the recipe goes very quickly.

Simply stir the ingredients together in a bowl and sear.

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

I love the Zucchini Cakes with a drizzle 0f smoky Chipotle Mayo (which you can keep vegan).

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

Squeeze the Zucchini Cakes with a little lime juice and serve with a hearty green salad. So good!

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

Hope you enjoy!

PS. Here is another version of Zucchini Fritters, that you may enjoy, inspired by the flavors of Greece!

 

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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 with Jalapeño and lime

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 60 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 1x
  • Category: vegetarian main,
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Description

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!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 lb zucchini, grated.
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 2 scallions, finely sliced
  • 2 teaspoons chopped jalapeno ( optional)
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro (or sub italian parsley)
  • zest from ½ a small lime
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup bread dry crumbs (like Panko) See notes for gluten-free.
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup grated cheese ( totally optional) like pepper jack, mozz, cheddar

Instructions

Grate zucchini  using a box grater, or a food processor with the grater attachment (fastest, easiest)

Toss with the salt and place in a strainer over a bowl to let the liquid drain out for 30 -60 minutes. Press the remaining water out of the zucchini with your fingers.  Place drained zucchini in a bowl.

Add garlic, scallions, jalapeño, herbs, lime zest, cumin and smoked paprika. Mix. Add the egg and mix it in well.  Mix the baking powder with the breadcrumbs, then add both to the bowl.  Add optional cheese (leave it out if going low-calorie.)

Give it a good stir. It should be like a thick paste. If it seems too wet, add a another tablespoon or two of bread crumbs ( or flour).  ( You could make this ahead and refrigerate at this point)

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Spoon the mixture into the skillet, creating golf ball-sized rounds. Flatten slightly, and sear each side until deeply golden ( about 5-6 minutes) and their centers slightly puff up.  Turn the heat down if necessary, to cook the insides all the way through, without burning the crust.

If making more that one batch, to save time,  you could finish them off ( after searing) in a 375 F oven until cooked through and slightly puffed.

Serve with a squeeze of lime and sour cream or Chipotle Mayo 


Notes

I have not tried this with gluten-free breadcrumbs or gluten-free flour, but my guess is it would work great. If you do try it, please comment below and let us know how it works.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 167
  • Sugar: 2.4 g
  • Sodium: 1605.7 mg
  • Fat: 4.4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 23.9 g
  • Fiber: 2.2 g
  • Protein: 8.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 93.3 mg

Keywords: zucchini cakes, zucchini cakes recipe, zucchini fritters, zucchini fritters recipe, zucchini fritters recipes

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Hi, I'm Sylvia!

Chef and author of the whole-foods recipe blog, Feasting at Home, Sylvia Fountaine is a former restaurant owner and caterer turned full-time food blogger. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest and shares seasonal, healthy recipes along with tips and tricks from her home kitchen.

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Comments

  1. 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.

    ✌🏼❤️👩🏼‍🍳

  2. 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!

  3. 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?

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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?

  10. 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.

  11. 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.