Healthy Zucchini Bread

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A lightened up recipe for zucchini bread that uses maple syrup instead of sugar and olive oil instead of butter. The texture is crisp on the outside and perfectly moist on the inside.

I feel like each summer I get to a point in the season where I’m completely drowning in zucchini and making at least one recipe a day that involves zucchini! Usually it’s something with zucchini noodles or some sort of breakfast recipe, like zucchini bread overnight oats or zucchini baked oatmeal.

Loaf of zucchini bread with 4 thick slices cut on a gold wire cooling rack.

I’m not complaining though, I love all things zucchini and get excited for this time every year.

Obviously zucchini bread is a no-brainer and needed to happen at some point this summer. I shared this vegan zucchini bread, but what about traditional zucchini bread with a healthy twist? That’s what this recipe is! It’s made with a blend of all-purpose and whole wheat flour, sweetened with maple syrup and uses olive oil instead of butter. Despite these healthy swaps this zucchini bread is perfectly moist, cinnamony and delicious!

Mixing bowl with the dry ingredients for a healthy zucchini bread.
Mixing Bowl with eggs, applesauce, vanilla and shredded zucchini.

Ingredients Needed:

  • all-purpose flour
  • whole wheat pastry flour
  • grated zucchini – no need to squeeze the grated zucchini… the liquid from the zucchini helps keep the bread moist
  • pure maple syrup
  • unsweetened applesauce
  • eggs
  • olive oil
  • vanilla
  • ground cinnamon
  • baking powder and baking soda
  • salt
  • ground nutmeg and walnuts are optional!

Substitutions & Notes

  • Flour – I really like the blend of all-purpose and whole wheat pasty flour. If needed, you can use all-purpose or regular whole wheat in place of the whole wheat pastry flour. You could also use an all-purpose gluten-free flour. I don’t recommend using coconut flour or almond flour for this recipe unless you’re up for experimenting.
  • Eggs – I haven’t tested the recipe with flaxseed eggs or egg replacer, but I assume it will work. Let me know if you try it.
  • Applesauce – You can use 1/4 cup mashed banana instead of the applesauce.
Close up photo of three thick slices of zucchini bread on a gold cooling rack.

Customize Your Zucchini Bread

People have strong opinions about their mix-ins when it comes to quick breads! Some love adding chocolate chips, dried berries and/or nuts while others just want straight up bread! Honestly you can’t go wrong. Here are some ideas:

  • nuts – I prefer chopped walnuts, but you can play around with different nuts!
  • chocolate chips – everything is better with chocolate, right?
  • dried fruit – dried cranberries would be delicious in this!

I would keep the total amount of mix-ins around 1/2 cup. Add them to the batter last, after you’ve combined the wet and dry ingredients.

How to Serve Zucchini Bread

Honestly, we eat this zucchini bread all day long. It’s delicious paired with eggs and coffee for a hearty breakfast, it’s the perfect mid-afternoon snack and if you mix-in chocolate chips, it’s perfect served as dessert! I love it both cold and warmed up in the toaster oven, plain or with a little butter or even nut butter spread on it. So many options!

Plate with 4 thick slices of zucchini bread.

More Zucchini Recipes to Try:

Healthy Zucchini Bread

5 from 30 votes
A lightened up recipe for zucchini bread that uses maple syrup instead of sugar and olive oil instead of butter. The texture is crisp on the outside and perfectly moist on the inside.
Loaf of zucchini bread with 4 thick slices cut on a gold wire cooling rack.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 16

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, optional
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups zucchini, finely grated
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional*

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 9″x5″ loaf pan or line with parchment.
  • In a medium bowl, stir flours, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg.
  • In a large bowl, whisk eggs. Add maple syrup and zucchini, stir until well blended. Stir in oil, applesauce and vanilla.
  • Add dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients and stir together until just blended (don’t over mix). Gently stir in chopped walnuts or whatever mix-ins you’re using.
  • Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
  • Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove loaf from pans and let cool on a wire rack before slicing.

Video

Notes

  • Chocolate chips are an awesome addition to this bread if you want a little chocolate. Add 1/3 cup to the recipe or use 1/2 cup chocolate chips in place of the walnuts.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice Calories: 158kcal Carbohydrates: 22g Protein: 3g Fat: 7g Saturated Fat: 1g Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 23mg Sodium: 142mg Fiber: 1g Sugar: 9g
Course: Bread
Cuisine: American
Keyword: healthy zucchini bread

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

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Recipe Rating




    47 comments
    1. Gwyn
      August 9, 2021 AT 2:07 pm

      5 stars
      Perfect zucchini bread recipe! I have both added nuts/chocolate and omitted them. Bread was equally as delicious! Toddler approved!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        August 10, 2021 AT 11:10 am

        Woo!! So happy to hear you enjoyed this zucchini bread and your toddler! Thanks so much for the review, Gwyn!

    2. Colleen
      August 7, 2021 AT 12:27 pm

      5 stars
      A must try! This bread is SO delicious. It is a new family favorite next to your Healthy Banana Bread. I substituted Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 GF Baking Flour in both recipes and they were perfect. Excited to try more of your recipes.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        August 9, 2021 AT 11:30 am

        This makes me so happy to hear, Colleen! So glad you enjoyed this zucchini bread. Thanks so much for the review!

    3. Tiffany
      July 18, 2021 AT 4:15 pm

      5 stars
      Perfectly fluffy with golden outside!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        July 19, 2021 AT 11:18 am

        So glad this zucchini bread was a hit, Tiffany! Thanks so much for trying it and coming back to leave a review. I really appreciate it!

    4. Linzay
      July 16, 2021 AT 1:40 pm

      5 stars
      Best zucchini bread recipe I’ve found yet! Used GF AP flour, 1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, and 1 small mashed banana. All substitutes were made simply because that’s what I had and it was delicious!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        July 19, 2021 AT 11:47 am

        Yay!! So glad this zucchini bread was a success even with the substitutions! Thanks for the review, Linzay. I really appreciate it!

    5. Jessica
      May 28, 2021 AT 12:27 am

      This bread comes out perfect every time and is a huge hit in my house. I’ve subbed one of the eggs with a banana and reduced the maple syrup to 1/2 cup and it’s perfectly sweet.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 28, 2021 AT 11:13 am

        Yay! I’m so glad this zucchini bread has been a hit, Jessica! Thanks for the review. I really appreciate it!

Parchment paper lined with protein balls.

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