Irresistible Lemon Zucchini Cake with Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Indulge your taste buds with the perfect blend of zesty lemons, garden-fresh zucchini, and the delightful sweetness of strawberry Swiss meringue buttercream in this irresistible Lemon Zucchini Cake. 

With a moist crumb and layers of creamy goodness, this cake is a showstopper for any occasion. 

Follow this straightforward recipe to create a dessert that effortlessly combines the brightness of citrus and the richness of strawberries.

List Of All The Ingredients You Will Need For This Cake

For the Lemon Zucchini Cake:

  • 2 1/4 cups (450g) sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Zest of 3 lemons
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini, squeezed and drained
  • 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

For the Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream:

  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp (228g) sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 sticks (453g) butter, room temperature
  • 2 tbsp strawberry powder (freeze-dried strawberries crushed into a powder)

For Assembly:

  • 6 fresh strawberries, thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter and flour two 6 x 3-inch cake pans. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar for 1-2 minutes. Add buttermilk and fold in shredded zucchini and lemon zest.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring gently until just combined. Do not overmix.
  4. Pour the batter into prepared pans and bake for approximately 1 hour, or until lightly browned on top and the center springs back when gently pressed.
  5. Release the cakes from the pans and let them cool on a wire rack until completely cool.
  6. For the Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream, combine egg whites, sugar, and salt over simmering water.
  7. Whisk until warm to the touch and the sugar has dissolved. Whisk in a standing mixer until stiff peaks form. Add butter gradually, then mix in strawberry powder.
  8. To assemble, cut both cakes in half horizontally, creating 4 cake rounds. Secure one round to a plate with a dot of buttercream.
  9. Spread 1/4 of the buttercream onto the cake, add another layer and repeat until all layers are assembled. Top with sliced strawberries.
  10. Scrape the outside of the cake to remove any excess buttercream.

Enjoy your masterpiece!

FAQs

1. Can I Use Frozen Strawberries Instead Of Fresh For Buttercream?

Yes, frozen strawberries can be used to make strawberry powder for buttercream. Simply crush freeze-dried strawberries into a powder for that delightful berry flavor.

2. Can I Make The Lemon Zucchini Cake Without Buttermilk?

While buttermilk contributes to the cake’s moistness and flavor, you can substitute it with a mixture of regular milk and a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice. Let it sit for a few minutes before adding it to the batter.

3. Can I Use A Different Type Of Flour For The Cake?

All-purpose flour works best for this recipe. While you can experiment with other flours, keep in mind that it might affect the texture and taste of the cake.

4. How Do I Prevent The Cake From Sticking To The Pans?

Ensure the cake pans are thoroughly buttered and floured before pouring in the batter. You can also use parchment paper at the bottom of the pans to make removal easier.

5. Can I Make The Cake Layers In Advance And Freeze Them?

Absolutely! Once the cake layers are completely cooled, you can wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze them for later use. Thaw before assembling.

6. Is There A Substitute For The Strawberry Powder In The Buttercream?

If you don’t have strawberry powder, you can use high-quality strawberry jam or preserves. Add it gradually to achieve the desired flavor and consistency.

7. How Do I Store The Assembled Cake?

Store the assembled cake in the refrigerator to maintain freshness. Ensure it is covered to prevent any odors from affecting the taste.

8. Can I Use A Hand Mixer Instead Of A Standing Mixer For The Buttercream?

Yes, you can use a hand mixer for the buttercream. It may take a bit longer to reach the desired consistency, but it’s achievable with patience.

9. Can I Omit The Strawberries In The Assembly?

Certainly, while strawberries add a fresh and fruity element, you can customize the assembly with your favorite fruits or omit them altogether.

10. How Long Will Buttercream Stay Good At Room Temperature?

The buttercream should be fine at room temperature for a few hours. However, if it’s a warm day, it’s best to refrigerate the cake and bring it to room temperature before serving.

Note: Buttercream recipe inspired by Martha Stewart.

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