This flavorful Spiced Zucchini Bread will transform your favorite summer squash into a delicious treat. You’ll be delighted by the bread’s super moist crumb thanks to the shredded zucchini, what a great way to add extra vegetables to your daily intake!
Zucchini season is here and if you’re growing your own, which I wish I was, you’ll be sautéing, grilling, and baking up all variations of zucchini bread for the rest of the summer. It’s definitely one of my favorite vegetables, or fruits, if you want to be botanically correct.
Much like banana bread, zucchini bread is a type of quick bread, which is leavened with baking soda and baking powder instead of yeast. Since you don’t have to wait for the bread to rise, it is much quicker to go from mixing bowl, to oven, straight to your mouth!
How to make the best Zucchini Bread recipe
True to the name “quick bread”, this easy zucchini bread recipe is extremely simple to whip up. You will need to have a food processor to quickly shred the zucchini or simply do it with a box grater or finely chop with a knife.
Making the easy zucchini bread batter
- Cut up the zucchini into smaller pieces before processing it in the food processor, this will help it go faster and lighten the workload on the food processor itself.
- Add eggs, sour cream, oil, vanilla extract, and beat until smooth.
- Add brown sugar and whisk again to dissolve in the liquid mixture.
- Now add the shredded zucchini and mix to distribute evenly.
- In a small mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices. Stir in the salt and add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture.
- Fold with a spatula until a chunky batter forms. It’s okay if you have a few streaks of flour left in the batter.
Bake in a loaf pan at 350°F for 50 – 60 minutes. Mine was done at 55 minutes, but oven temperature can vary so make sure to check the doneness of your bread 5 minutes before you think it will be done and allow it to bake longer if necessary.
Variations and add-ins
With all the flavorful spices added, you can barely taste the zucchini, it’s a good thing if you don’t like the taste of vegetables in your sweet treats. But the shredded zucchini keeps this zucchini bread super moist and ready for any add-ins you want to throw at it.
- Try folding a cup of chocolate chips in the batter for some melty gooey factor like this Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread.
- Chopped walnuts or pecans can add a little crunch and contrasting texture like these Banana Nut Muffins.
- You can add a combination of chocolate chips and nuts for even more wonderful textures.
- Dried fruits will also work as a mix-in.
- Skip the spices and brown sugar, and opt for a mixture of granulated sugar and plenty of lemon zest for a tangy refreshing version of lemon zucchini bread.
Can I bake this recipe in a muffin pan?
Yes, this recipe will yield 12 regular size zucchini bread muffins. You’ll need to adjust the baking time to approximately 17 – 19 minutes at the same oven temperature, 350°F.
- You can substitute the sour cream with plain yogurt or buttermilk in this recipe.
- You can use yellow zucchini as well as green ones. The green ones are more typical in zucchini bread recipes because you can easily see the green specs.
- Add or remove spices, include chocolate chips, nuts, dried fruits to customize your zucchini bread to your liking.
Do I need to peel the zucchini?
No, you don’t need to peel the zucchini. Usually, the skin of a fruit contains a lot of nutrition so leaving it on is preferred.
Do I need to squeeze out the water from the zucchini?
A lot of recipes will call for squeezing out the water from the zucchini to control the moisture in the bread, and to avoid a soggy end product.
For this particular recipe, you do not need to squeeze out the liquid but be sure to use a consistent weight measure of zucchini, 8 oz. I suggest weighing your zucchini at the grocery store if you don’t have a scale at home.
I’ve tested this recipe multiple times and did not have any issues with soggy bread. However, if you are winging it and end up using more zucchini than this recipe calls for, you could end up with soggy flat bread.
A word of warning, I do give cup measurement for the shredded zucchini and this is just shredded zucchini spooned into a cup, not packed. If you are packing your zucchini in, you will get a lot more mass and could end up with soggy bread.
I highly suggest investing in a cheap kitchen scale, it will change the way you bake.
Why does my zucchini bread fall in the middle?
Having too much moisture could cause zucchini bread to fall (see point above). Overmixing or having too much leavening agent could also cause the bread to over-rise and then fall while cooling.
Again, I’ve tested this recipe multiple times and I have experienced first hand fallen bread, dense bread issues. The correct moisture content is important to get a nice rise and avoid soggy gooey dense bread.
If you happen upon this issue, please trace back your steps to see where the recipe may have gone wrong for you. Gram measurements are listed for the major ingredients to help you troubleshoot with exactness. And of course, I’m here to help.
Zucchini bread will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. If the weather is particularly warm, you may want to keep it refrigerated and microwave for 10 – 15 seconds before serving if you’d like.
You can also freeze sliced zucchini bread for up to 3 months. Simply wrap each slice in plastic and/or foil, and store in a freezer bag. Thaw at room temperature or in the fridge overnight and warm it in the microwave or toaster oven before serving.
More quick bread and loaf cakes
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!
📖 Recipe card
Spiced Zucchini Bread
- ¼ cup sour cream (55 g)
- 2 large eggs
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil (67 g)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup light brown sugar (200 g lightly packed)
- 1 medium zucchini (~8 oz, 1 ¼ cup shredded)
- 2 cup all-purpose flour (260 g)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon cardamom
- Melted butter for pan
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Brush a loaf pan with some melted butter and line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the sides. Brush the parchment paper with more butter. Set aside.
- Wash and trim the zucchini. Shred using a box grater or chop into smaller pieces and shred in a food processor. Set aside.
- Add sour cream, eggs, oil and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Add brown sugar and mix until sugar is well incorporated. Add the shredded zucchini and stir to distribute evenly.
- Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and spices into a small mixing bowl. Stir in the kosher salt. Add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture and mix until just combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan and bake for about 55 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean with just a few crumbs attached.
- Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing it from the pan and let it cool further on a wire rack.
- You can substitute buttermilk or plain yogurt for sour cream.
- You can use either green or yellow zucchini.
- You do not need to peel the zucchini before shredding.
- If you don’t have a food processor, shred with a box grater or finely chop with a knife.
- Optional mix-ins: up to 1 cup of chocolate chips and/or chopped nuts, such as walnuts and pecans.
- This recipe also makes 12 regular size muffins, bake at 350°F for about 17-19 mins.
- Refer to the post for more troubleshooting tips.