I love quick breads. I eat them for breakfast, mid-morning snack, afternoon snack, and dessert. No matter the flavor – banana bread, pumpkin bread, zucchini bread, carrot cake loaf, cranberry streusel quick bread – they never last long in our house. This healthier version of zucchini bread is no exception.
Not only do I love that I can have a tasty cake disguised as “bread” (because who doesn’t want dessert for breakfast?), I love how easy they are to make. Hence the term quick bread. As I was digging through recipes to use up the end-of-summer zucchinis, I found that many zucchini bread recipes were more time-consuming than I expected, requiring the baker to grate the zucchini, then squeeze out the liquid. Why go through all of that trouble only to have to add more liquid into the batter later? We don’t do it for banana bread, and the yellow fruits produce plenty of liquid when they are mashed. In honor of saving time, and still producing a delicious loaf of veggie-packed quick bread, this zucchini bread keeps all of that good liquid from the grated zucchini in the batter.
You would never know that there are two packed cups of zucchini in this bread. While you can see the green flecks in each slice, the spices in the batter really come through to create a warm, cinnamony spiced flavor. A dash of nutmeg and cardamom bring depth to the bread and give it the perfect transitional flavor for that time between summer and fall.
Just like the zucchini, other ingredients are disguised in this bread that make it healthier without sacrificing that delicious flavor we all want in a sweet loaf. While this is optional, I use half whole wheat flour and some rolled oats to bring some extra grains without changing the taste much. Replacing half of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat or white whole wheat flour is a sneaky way to introduce more whole grains into your treats but avoid the rough texture they can sometimes create. The rolled oats mix well with the grated zucchini in the bread and add a little texture that I love. To avoid refined sugars, we use a combination of pure maple syrup and honey. Since both of these sweeteners can have strong flavors, I like to combine the two so neither overpower the flavor of the bread.
Zucchini bread is a delicious snack to make with your summer squash before it disappears. This healthier version is packed with the veggie, but brings a great cinnamon and spice flavor that you will want come breakfast and snack time.
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup canola or olive oil
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon honey
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups packed shredded zucchini
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- ½ cup oats
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom
Preheat the oven to 325 F. Spray a loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom. Set aside.
In another large bowl, mix together the eggs, oil, honey, maple syrup, and vanilla. Add the grated zucchini and stir to combine fully.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir with a spatula just until combined and there are no streaks of flour.
Bake for 55-70 mins, until a toothpick comes out clean. The top should be golden with a few cracks.