January 24

Jolly Lamington

Who doesn’t love a lamington? The combination of cake with chocolate and coconut makes my mouth water just thinking about it. They are delicious to enjoy as a treat all year around, but traditionally in Australia we must have them on Australia Day.

I have to be honest I never knew the connection between lamingtons and Australia Day given we have a National Lamington Day every year on 21 July.

Over the past week I’ve been doing some google searching and apparently the lamington was mistakenly created by a maid servant of the 1896-1901 Governor of Queensland, Charles Wallace Alexander Napier Cochrane-Baillie from Lamington in the County of Lanark, aka 2nd Baron of Lamington. The story is that the maid servant accidentally dropped a sponge cake into melted chocolate and rather than throw out the cake the Baron of Lamington advised to cover it with coconut so he could still eat it without much mess.

I’m not sure how they ate lamingtons back in the day when it was created, but we all know that lamingtons are messy, well at least in the Francis household they are anyway. The cake squares are messy to make, so dress for mess, and they are coconut messy to eat, so use a plate or like a true blue Aussie eat them outside on the lawn. If you have chickens they will devour the dropped dessicated coconut – our chickens love it. So the good ole lamington has been around for quite some time!

I have 2 different lamington recipes – one I call Jolly Lamington and the other I call Baron Lamington (I will post the Baron Lamingon recipe in the future).

I named the Jolly Lamington after the Boxing Kangaroo, as the recipe has zucchini in it, so there is a slight shade of green when you bite into the lamington. Bella loves telling everyone it has zucchini in these lamingtons. She particularly enjoys telling other kids whom generally pull a face then won’t even try them. She loves it as it means gets to eat more later. She thinks she is so clever its just too funny.

The amount of lamingons this recipe makes depends on the size. I generally cut small lamingtons which I call ‘kid sized’. They make great all year treats, especially on Australia Day, and freeze well. I love freezing some so I can pop them into my kids lunch boxes for school. If you don’t have time to make then freeze then just bake the cake, cut and freeze then when your ready to make lamingtions defrost, coat in chocolate icing and desiccated coconut.

Jolly Lamington

Prep time Cook time Total time
40 mins 30 mins 1 hour 10 mins

Author: Tracey Francis of Essential Olie
Serves: 20-30


  • Cake
  • 2 medium Zucchini (finely grated)
  • ½ cup Sugar (I use organic raw caster sugar)
  • 1 cup Coconut Oil, Olive Oil or Vegetable oil (I prefer Coconut Oil)
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract OR 1 teaspoon Vanilla Powder
  • 2½ cups Gluten Free Flour
  • ½ teaspoon Guar Gum
  • 2 teaspoons Gluten Free Baking Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Gluten Free Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan Pink Sea Salt
  • Icing
  • 450g Pure Icing Sugar
  • ½ cup Raw Cacao
  • 3 Tablespoon Nuttelex/Butter
  • ½ cup Milk (dairy or nut)
  • 200-300g Dessicated Coconut (I like to use organic sulphite and preservative free)


  1. Cake
  2. Preheat oven to 170°C (fan bake)
  3. Finely grate zucchini into mix master bowl, or, mixing bowl (or speed 4 for 10 sec in a thermomix)
  4. Mix together (using a mix master or electric beater) zucchini, sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla extract/powder (or speed 4 for 10 sec in a thermomix)
  5. On a sheet of baking paper or in another mixing bowl sift gluten free flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt (or sift directly into thermomix bowl)
  6. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients mixing after each time (if using a thermomix I sift 1.5 cups of flour with the remaining dry ingredients, then blend on speed 4 for 10 seconds, then add remaining flour and blend for another 10 sec)
  7. The mixture is thick so do your best to level it into a slice tray that has been prepared either with baking paper or butter/nuttelex
  8. Bake for 30 mins
  9. Cool completely OR leave in the refridgerator for 24 hours if time permits then cut into 4cm x 4cm squares (or to the size of your liking)
  10. Now for the messy part – icing
  11. Pour the dessicated coconut onto a plate
  12. In a mixing bowl or large bowl, melt butter (I use put the mixing bowl over a saucepan of boiling water) then add icing sugar, milk and raw cacao and whisk together
  13. Using 2 forks dip a square of cake into the chocolate then take out and try to drain off excess icing before put it onto the plate with dessicated coconut – cover in coconut
  14. Put lamingtons on a wire rack to dry completely (once all lamington’s have been made if you like the icing firm put them in the refridgerator) then serve. We like to leave them in the refridgerator so they are cold when you eat them.


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