Mini Courgette Loaf Cakes- Lunchbox Idea

It’s with mixed feelings that I am writing this post. Partly because there have been days when I began to doubt that this day would ever come.

Having three children very close together (3 under 3 & 1/2 at one point) is a challenge to say the least. I have had many highs and lows over the last 8 years. Anyone that tells you anything different is lying,. Easy……it ain’t. But I have survived and come out smiling!

Predictably, now that the time has come for my youngest to go to school, I am feeling wistful. I knew I would feel like this. Everyone must do. Just as much as I am dreading my 8yo leaving her junior school. When the time comes I know I will be fighting off the tears and I hate it already. It really brings out my sentimental side. Much as try and fight it off.

So here is a cake dedicated to all the mums and children out there starting the daily school ritual. It is sneakily good for you, can I say healthy? Well, it is home-made and it contains organically home-grown yellow courgettes along with carrot, dried apricots, sultanas, (fair-trade) sugar and butter all of which can be organic if you like/can afford it.  I would have used wholemeal flour but I forgot to buy it, a mum’s prerogative I think!

The recipe has been adapted from  Nigel Slater’s article in The Guardian HERE.

I am linking this recipe up to SIMPLE AND IN SEASON. This month it is being hosted by Katie at FEEDING BOYS.

Mini Courgette Loaf Cakes

Ingredients :- Makes 12 mini loaf cakes

  • 200g butter

  • 150g sugar  (I used fair-trade granulated)

  • 2 medium eggs (free-range if possible)

  • 200g wholemeal/white self-raising flour

  • 1 medium or 1/2 a large courgette ( I used my own yellow from the garden) grated and squeezed well to remove the water

  • 1 small carrot grated and squeezed well to remove the water

  • A pinch of cinnamon and a pinch of nutmeg

  • 70g  sultanas

  • 70g  chopped dried apricots

  • Honey for the topping


    Method :-

    Pre- heat the oven to 160 degrees.

    Cream the butter and sugar together.

    Beat in one egg, then fold in half the flour. Repeat with the other egg and flour.

    Add the courgette, carrot and spices. Stir to combine.

    Fold in the sultanas and apricots.

    Divide the mixture between 12 mini loaf cases ( I used Lakeland’s disposable cases)

    Bake for 45 minutes approximately.

    Once out of the oven paint the cakes with some warmed honey.

    Notes :-

    These little cakes can be stored in their containers wrapped up individually or in a tin. They would also freeze well.

    You could freeze them individually and take them out in the morning, they would be defrosted by lunchtime.

    I did find the Lakeland cardboard  mini-loaf boxes stuck at the bottom. They claim that you do not need to grease them. I would disagree and say that you need to add some parchment paper to the base to make removal less tricky.

    You could vary the fruit  combination to suit your tastes, or replace some of the fruit with nuts…….BUT ONLY AT HOME. Schools do not allow nuts in any shape or form in lunch boxes!




  1. says

    I hope this week goes well for all your family Laura. I can’t imagine how it must feel for you. Probably wondering how this day came around so quickly? Anyway, this is a brilliant recipe, thank you so much for sharing it. This recipe is bookmarked for my post-books baking! Charlotte x

  2. says

    Good luck with the back to school and youngest in school! These look like delightful lunch box treats! I just bought a book called marvellous mini cakes and there’s a similar recipe in there. I love baking in miniature form! 

  3. says

    The school thing is hard at all the major steps, nursery to school, infants to juniors, juniors to big school and the sudden realisation that they aren’t kids anymore as the time to leave secondary school looms.  I feel for you.  I’ve just invested in some of these wonderful loaf moulds, great aren’t they?  Love the idea of savoury loaves and so perfect for school lunches.  GG

  4. Katie says

    These are one of my fave lunchbox recipes and you’ve reminded me that I really need to whip up a batch for the freezer. I’ve not really got into the swing of things yet with the start of term… Thanks for linking up for Simple and in Season :-)

  5. says

    I like the idea of baking a healthy cake for the school lunchbox. There are very useful tips in your notes! I do not add cakes to my child’s lunchbox and he started complaining about it. I will bookmark this recipe and give it a try. I agree with you about being a mum of young children (3 and 6 y). It is not easy. I feel overwhelmed sometimes. Good luck with your youngest starting school. A new beginning.

    • says

      Hi Rita, yes I know cakes aren’t exactly healthy but at least if you are making them yourself they tend to have better quality ingredients in them. Plus you can add extra dried fruits and lower the amount of sugar which is still far better than buying from a supermarket as well as being so much cheaper!

      • says

        Hi Laura! Yesterday I baked these lovely cakes. I agree they aren’t exactly healthy (plenty of butter and sugar!) , but I enjoyed to see my kids eating them during a picnic at Ruislip Lido (also my husband liked them). Thank you for sharing this recipe!

        • says

          That is great news, so good to hear. Yes, they aren’t low fat but still are full of good ingredients so I think that can only be a positive and at least the courgette bit is healthy!

  6. says

    WHat a great lunchbox idea! I may not have kids, but I do pack lunchboxes for myself when I go to school (: School’s starting in about a month, so I’m going to start to have to get into the hang of planning for takeaway lunches again, this is a great one!

  7. says

    Love the inclusion of sultanas and apricots! I bet the kids loved them! Hope you all survived the first week of school, always the most stressfulof the term!

  8. says

    I’m going to feel excatly the same when my 3rd starts school too. Hope the first couple of weeks has been ok. I am now doing lunch boxes for the first time so this recipe is a great one for me to try. Really want to find something healthy that both my girls like which I can bake for their lunch. I’ve bookmarked, will let you know. X


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