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Coconut Lime Macadamia Cake

A slice of coconut lime macadamia cake on a yellow plate with a fork resting beside it
This coconut lime macadamia cake, adapted from a recipe by Aussie chef Bill Granger, is a simple dessert with ample tropical flavor that's light and fluffy and made complete with a sweet-tart citrus icing.
David Leite

Prep 20 mins
Cook 50 mins
Total 1 hr 10 mins
8 servings


For the cake

  • Baking spray or butter
  • 7 ounces raw unsalted whole macadamia nuts
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Generous pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 2 limes
  • 6 eggs separated
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut well-packed

For the lime glaze

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lime
  • Pinch of salt


Make the cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line the bottom of a 9-by-2-inch cake pan or springform pan with parchment and generously coat with the baking spray or butter.
  • Dump the macadamia nuts, flour, baking powder, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until the nuts are finely ground but not paste-like and the mixture clumps together along the side of the bowl. Press a clump between your fingers; it should feel moist and stick together sorta like wet sand.
  • Add the granulated sugar and zest in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix for 30 seconds to release the essential oil from the zest.
  • Plop the egg yolks in the sugar mixture and beat on medium-high until the mixture is smooth and creamy, 3 minutes.
  • Gently fold the coconut and the nut mixture into the egg mixture.

    TESTER TIP: The batter will be thick. Panic not. That's how it's supposed to be.

  • In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. This can take several minutes. Stay calm and keep beating. Using a spatula, gently fold the whites into the batter.
  • Spoon the batter evenly into the pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the cake is golden and firm to the touch.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool it in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

Make the lime glaze

  • As the cake cools, whisk the confectioners’ sugar, lime juice, zest, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl until smooth and glossy.
  • Turn the cake onto a cake stand or platter so the smooth bottom is facing up. Slather the glaze over the warm cake, allowing it to drizzle down the sides. Devour.