Zucchini bread has a moist crumb and subtle sweetness. This easy quick bread recipe is packed with summer squash and simply delicious!
Ah zucchini bread… a summer staple. I have made my fair share of zucchini breads over the years and each time I try something different. This loaf has to be my favorite though. It has a moist, tender crumb, but is incredibly light in texture and sweetness. I think it’s everything a zucchini bread should be.
In the past, the I made zucchini bread with brown sugar and cinnamon (see that recipe here), but this loaf is straight up zucchini mixed in with butter, lemon and vanilla for flavor. I can’t get enough of it! Let’s break down why this recipe works…
Why this zucchini bread recipe works
I love this zucchini bread because it is subtly sweet with a texture that is light and tender. A lot of zucchini bread is packed with brown sugar and oil that makes a more gummy texture (almost like banana bread). By using only 3/4 cup granulated sugar and butter instead of oil, the texture and flavor is just right. Arguably the most important step is draining zucchini!
How to shred zucchini squash
Shredding and draining zucchini is easy, but takes a few steps. First, wash, dry and cut off the ends of two medium zucchini. If the zucchini is large, cut it in half lengthwise and remove any seeds. You do not need to peel zucchini for zucchini bread. You can use a box grater or food processor to shred the zucchini.
Using a box grater, place grater on firm surface such a cutting board. Hold the box grater firmly in one hand and the zucchini firmly in the other hand. Start to run the zucchini up and down the large hole side of the grater. Continue until zucchini reaches a stub. I love this box grater because it has an attachment to catch the zucchini!
Using a food processor, swap out the blade attachment for the shredding disc. Attach the top of the food processor and insert the zucchini in the food chute. Turn on the food processor and use the food pusher to press the zucchini into the bowl of the food processor. The shredding disc will shred the zucchini in seconds! I love the KitchenAid food processor with all the attachments. It can be used for everything!
How to drain zucchini for zucchini bread
After you have shredded the zucchini, drape a cheesecloth or kitchen towel over a medium bowl. Place the shredded zucchini in the towel and wrap it up tightly. Squeeze the zucchini in the cloth over the bowl. The cloth will start to absorb the moisture, then trickle out into the bowl beneath it. Get as much moisture out of the zucchini as you can. You can even do this twice with a second kitchen cloth. Discard the moisture drippings and set zucchini aside to use in the recipe.
How to make zucchini bread
Zucchini bread calls for zucchini, flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, butter, eggs, yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla.
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a 9×5 loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Shred and drain zucchini (see detailed instructions above). Set zucchini aside.
- Whisk together dry ingredients—flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt. Set aside.
- Mix together wet ingredients—sugar, butter, eggs, yogurt, lemon juice a vanilla.
- Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Stir just until combined.
- Stir in zucchini until evenly dispersed. Transfer batter to prepared pan.
- Bake for 55 to 60 minutes until golden brown. Let loaf cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing from pan and cooling 1 hour before serving.
How to store zucchini bread
Let zucchini bread cool completely. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for 3 days or in the refrigerator for 5 days. You can also reheat slices of zucchini bread in the toaster oven.
Can you freeze zucchini bread?
Yes, once zucchini bread is cooled completely, wrap it in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Place in a freezer safe bag and store on a flat surface in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature and serving.
More zucchini recipes
Do you love zucchini? Here are some recipes you will surely enjoy!
- Cinnamon swirl zucchini cake is also made is a loaf pan, but is sweeter and denser like cake. Oh and it’s topped with cinnamon icing!
- Carrot zucchini muffins are a quick and easy snack!
- Three cheese zucchini galette is a savory option for those of you who love cheese.
- Chocolate zucchini banana bread will satisfy your sweet tooth in no time.
- Fudgy zucchini brownies from Country Clever blog
- Zucchini coffee cake from Sweet Cayenne blog
I hope you enjoy this zucchini bread recipe! It is certainly one of my favorites. I make it numerous of times over the summer and friends love it! If you try this recipe, be sure to tag @ifyougiveablondeakitchen on social media so I can see your creation!
- 1 pound zucchini squash (about 2 medium zucchini)
- 2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 6 Tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt, room temperature
- 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, optional (encouraged if you like noticeable sweetness in your zucchini bread)
- Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Wash, dry and cut the ends off the zucchini. Shred the zucchini using a box grater or food processor. Drape a cheesecloth (or kitchen towel) over a medium bowl. Place shredded zucchini in the cloth and wrap it tightly. Remove moisture from the shredded zucchini by squeezing and ringing the kitchen cloth. Allow the bowl to catch the drippings (discard the excess moisture). Unwrap the shredded zucchini from the cloth and place the squash in a separate bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix the sugar, butter, eggs, yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla until combined. Pour wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients. Stir together by hand until most of the flour is absorbed (it's okay if there are a few pockets of flour. They will get mixed in with the zucchini). Add the shredded zucchini and mix until dispersed through the batter (avoid over mixing).
- Transfer batter to prepared loaf pan. Bake zucchini bread at 375° F for 55 to 60 minutes or until the loaf is golden in color and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with little to no crumbs. Let loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes then use ends of the parchment paper to lift it out of the pan to a wire rack to cool for 1 hour before serving.
- Yogurt adds moisture and richness to zucchini bread. Whole, low-fat or nonfat work this recipe. If you use greek yogurt, thin it out with 1 or 2 teaspoons of milk.
- Lemon juice (fresh squeezed!) will not be very noticeable in the bread, but it enhances the zucchini flavor. If you want, you can omit it.
- A kitchen scale is crucial for baking. It’s way more accurate to weigh your ingredients instead of measuring them! Greater Goods has great customer service. Find their scale on Amazon.
- A food processor with a shredding disc saves so much time when shredding zucchini. I love this 9-cup food processor from KitchenAid (also available on Amazon).
- In a pinch, a box grater works to shred zucchini. This one has an attachment to catch all the zucchini shreds.
- 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan works for all quick breads. This Farberware loaf pan is lighter in color to prevent burning on the edges.
- Cheesecloth will efficiently ring moisture out of the zucchini. I also use my cheesecloth from Sur la Table for draining ricotta and yogurt! (also available on Amazon).