Zesty egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake

Everyone needs a quick and easy cake recipe that can be made from ingredients you have in the cupboard at home. When you are living with food allergies, this is even more important for the times when you need a sweet dessert at the last minute. This super easy egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake is just the thing. It’s also free from nuts and easily made free from wheat, gluten and soy. And of course it’s vegan as well. You can go from simple pantry ingredients to ready to eat in just over half an hour.

Slice of dairy and egg free coconut and lime cake on a white plate with gold and blue edging on a marble background with fresh limes

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Fresh limes

We have two Tahitian lime trees full of delicious ripe fruit at the moment. While I like a slice of lime in my gin and tonic, I was going to have to find a way to use a few more of them. Coconut and lime is such a delicious combination, so that’s where today’s freshly picked limes went.

Fresh Tahitian lime on tree with succulents and leaves behind

If you don’t have access to fresh limes, you could also make this cake with lemons instead. And, if you don’t have lemons, you can just leave out the zest and juice altogether for a perfectly delicious coconut only version.

When using limes in this recipe, I like to use lime zest instead of grated lime, but this is really a personal preference. I have a nifty little zester tool that I can use to make short strands of fresh lime peel. If you don’t have a zester or prefer a smoother textured cake, you can just grate the lime rind into your mix instead. The recipe uses the lime juice too so nothing goes to waste.

Easy pantry ingredients

As I always say, allergy-friendly cooking doesn’t need to be difficult. If you are cooking allergy free food every day it needs to be quick, easy and convenient. This recipe works so well because it uses ingredients we always have in the cupboard. That’s the great thing about most egg and dairy free cakes! This coconut and lime cake calls for:

  • 1 cup self raising flour (or gluten free/wheat free self-raising flour);
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut;
  • 1 cup caster sugar;
  • juice and zest of one fresh lime;
  • your usual dairy free milk option – the recipe requires one cup of liquid in total, consisting of the lime juice plus enough non-dairy milk to make up one cup in total; (We use oat milk, but soy milk or rice milk would be fine. Coconut milk would probably be a bit too much in this recipe); and
  • icing sugar to dust your finished cake.
 Ingredients for dairy free coconut and lime cake: self raising flour in cannister, coconut, sugar, oat milk and fresh limes on marble bench

Cooking method

Preheat the oven to 180C (350F). Grease and line a standard sized loaf tin (approximately 24 x 12cm, or 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inches). I usually grease lightly with a dairy free spread like Nuttelex and line with baking paper as well, but if you are using a non-stick pan you could just use the baking paper.

Add 1 cup of each of the dry ingredients (flour, coconut and sugar) into a large mixing bowl and combine. Mix in the zest of one lime.

Make a well in the middle the dry ingredients and add the lime juice and enough non-dairy milk to make up 1 cup of liquid in total to the centre. Mix gently until the ingredients are combined. The cake batter will seem a bit runny, but that’s fine.

Add the mixture to your prepared loaf tin and bake in the oven for around 25 minutes. You can test to see if the cake is cooked through with a skewer. If it comes out clean, your cake is ready. If there is cake batter stuck to the skewer, you should cook for an extra few minutes.

Let the cake cool in the loaf pan for around 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool some more.

Don’t be surprised if your cake is flatter than you were expecting, particularly if you use gluten free flour. This egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake is a sweet and moist cake that is quite dense, so much so that I sometimes call it a coconut and lime slice instead of a cake.

Egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake cooling in a non-stick loaf cake pan lined with baking paper

Icing or no icing?

To ice or not to ice, that is the question. If you’ve added lime to the cake, I really don’t think it needs icing (frosting). I prefer to cover the cake with a light dusting of icing sugar instead and the let the zesty lime in the cake do the talking. The cake is very sweet as it is too.

If you do want to add some icing or extra lime (or lemon) flavour, I’d suggest making a very basic runny lime or lemon icing with a mixture of icing sugar and citrus juice and water to taste. Drizzle this over the cake after it has cooled, so that it forms more of a glaze than a thick topping.

This delicious dairy and egg free coconut and lime cake is best enjoyed as soon as it has cooled out of the oven. But if you have any leftovers, it will keep for a couple of days. You can also freeze it for later.

Vegan egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake on a wooden board with fresh limes

More allergy friendly recipes

If you enjoyed this recipe, you might also like some of our other citrus flavoured treats like:

Or for another delicious cake, try our gluten free vegan vanilla peach cake or carrot cake with ginger and orange. And make sure to have a look at some of our other allergy friendly recipes for quick and easy allergy friendly cooking and baking.

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Zesty egg and dairy free coconut and lime cake

A sweet and tangy vegan coconut and lime loaf cake made with just 5 allergy-friendly ingredients and free from dairy, egg, nuts and gluten
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Australian
Servings 8
Calories 248 kcal


  • large mixing bowl
  • Measuring cup
  • Wooden spoon
  • Non stick loaf pan (lined with baking paper)
  • Wire cake rack
  • Citrus zester or grater
  • Citrus juicer


  • 1 cup self raising flour (regular or gluten free)
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1 lime for zest and juice
  • <1 cup non-dairy milk (soy, oat or rice) – the lime juice and non-dairy milk together should equal one cup of liquid


  • Preheat your oven to 180C (350F).
  • Add dry ingredients (flour, coconut and sugar) in a large mixing bowl and mix to combine.
  • Add the zest of one fresh lime to the dry ingredients and mix through.
  • Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Add the lime juice and non dairy milk to the centre and mix gently with a wooden spoon until the mixture is combined. The consistency of the cake batter will be quite runny,
  • Transfer the mixture to the lined loaf cake tin. Place in the oven and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes. The top of the cake should be starting to turn golden. Check that the centre of the cake is cooked with a skewer. You may need to leave the cake in longer if batter still sticks to the skewer, especially if using gluten free flour.
  • Remove from the oven and let the cake cool in the tin for around 10 minutes. Then transfer to a cake rack to cool further.
  • Cover your cake with a light dusting of icing sugar and serve. Alternatively, you could make a thin icing mixture from icing sugar, a dash of lime juice and water to taste and drizzle over the top.


If you don’t have any limes, you can substitute with lemons or any other citrus fruit you like. 
You can also leave out the citrus zest and juice altogether and make a simple coconut loaf cake.
Soy, oat or rice milk all work well in this recipe. Coconut milk isn’t recommended as it will make the coconut flavour too overpowering.
Keyword allergy-friendly, dairy free, easy, egg free, gluten free, nut free, vegan

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Scout

    This looks delicious! What a great treat to take your mind to the tropics 🙂

  2. Abhi

    5 stars
    It looks so yummy! I love nuts and would prefer to add roughly chopped nuts. It gives a crunchier taste. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Allergy Spot

    I have never tried it with nuts – our house is nut free due to severe nut allergies – but I can imagine almonds might work well? I love recipes that can be adapted to suit individual tastes and dietary needs though. Thanks for your comments!

  4. Allergy Spot

    Thanks Scout! Now you have me wishing I was sitting under a palm tree somewhere…

  5. Rachael

    This looks so nice and easy and I love that it is dairy free!

  6. Jeannie

    5 stars
    love a good egg and dairyfree cake!

  7. baines.n@gmail.com

    I’ve just made this cake, it’s taken 45 minutes to bake on 180c in the UK I haven’t cut into it yet to see how it is inside the knife was clear on the last 5 minutes.

  8. Allergy Spot

    Thanks so much for your comment. The cooking time can vary a lot depending on your oven, and also whether you use gluten free flour or not. I find gluten free can take a little longer. I have also updated the recipe slightly now as ‘juice of one lime’ can also vary a lot between limes, and extra liquid can extend the cooking time too. You’ve done exactly what’s needed by just cooking longer until the knife comes out clean.

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