My New Favorite Zucchini Bread

By • July 25, 2011 • 73 Comments

Author Notes: I think one of my favorite things when it comes to zucchini is a lot of other peoples favorite too...Zucchini bread. It's sweet, moist, and one of the few things I will happily turn my oven on for even on the hottest of days. Besides the taste, zucchini bread does another wonderful thing, it freezes well. So you get to stash a loaf in the freezer for a later date and not feel the need to hoard the one loaf being devoured on the counter. However, sometimes...I find myself wanting it to be a little different. The cinnamon version is wonderful, and I'll always make it, but I was looking at that slice on my plate a couple of weeks ago and wondering what other flavors I could put in there. Don't say chocolate. Go ahead and make a chocolate zucchini cake if you want to, but don't make chocolate zucchini bread...that's just not right. It's like zucchini trying to be something it's not. My favorite zucchini bread recipe is one I found on Smitten Kitchen. It is the moist, flavorful zucchini bread you are craving when you go to make a couple of loaves. Inspired by that recipe, I was looking out my kitchen window into my herb garden and I saw my rosemary plant. Now there's a thought. So I thought a little more and came up with this:

Food52 Review: WHO: Dabblings is an avid DIY-er, mother, food blogger, and "self-reformed wild child."
WHAT: A rosemary and orange-scented loaf cake that feels both indulgent and virtuous.
HOW: Shred, stir, bake, slice, enjoy.
WHY WE LOVE IT: This is the kind of quick bread we love to keep around the house, to slice for breakfast, for snack, for dessert, for anything. And when we run out, it takes a mere hour to whip up another loaf!

Makes 2 loaves

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup of plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • 1 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 2 cups of zucchini; shredded
  • 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary; finely minced
  • Zest of one orange (I used a navel orange)
  • Juice from 1/2 of the orange
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of toasted pecans; chopped ( Or pine nuts if you can swing that)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease two loaf pans and set them aside.
  2. In a large bowl beat the eggs. Mix in the yogurt, oil, and sugar. Then mix in the shredded zucchini, rosemary, orange zest, and orange juice. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and toasted nuts.
  4. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  5. Once the batter is well combined divide it evenly between the two loaf pans.
  6. Bake the loaves for one hour, give or take a few minutes, until a tester inserted comes out clean. My loaves took exactly one hour and were perfect.
  7. Remove the loaves from the oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes inside the loaf pan before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  • This recipe is a Wildcard Contest Winner!
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Tags: summer treat, sweet and savory

Comments (73) Questions (3)


about 20 hours ago Geni

Just had my first piece of almost warm (or would that be not quite hot) bread because I couldn't wait til it cooled and it is simply delicious! My loaf pans were larger, 9.5 x 5.5 so the bread is not as deep and baked in less than 45 min. Any longer would have been way too long for this size pan (my mom's bread pans making them at least 60 years old). As a matter of personal preference, I'd decrease the salt a wee bit. A great way to eat zucchini (-; Thank you Dabblings!


8 days ago Celia Lima

Very bright tasting, enjoyed by all, a keeper recipe!


2 months ago jampot

Absolutely wonderful!! I followed this recipe almost exactly (because of what I had, I added toasted walnuts instead of pecans and lemonade instead of OJ) and the bread was so NomNom good! Fantastic really! The rosemary and orange make it so bright and perfect. This is definitely my new favorite zucchini bread. I found that 55 minutes was perfect for me. Thank you, Dabblings!


8 months ago TheOwlMonster

I was sorely disappointed with the outcome of this recipe. Easily the biggest baking disaster I've had to date. (And I've had quite a few.) I'm not sure what I did wrong, but the bread simply refused to set. I baked and baked and baked it until the top was essentially one shade off burned and the center still came out as mushy as mashed potatoes.
Normally I have a two attempt policy when it comes to baking - I'll try the recipe twice before giving up - but in this case I don't think I want to spare the ingredients. It smelled good, just not good enough to disappoint a second time.


8 months ago Dabblings

It sounds like the mixture was too wet going into the oven. That's the only thing that would cause the outside to burn and the inside not to set. I'm sorry it didn't turn out for you.


10 months ago Maya Muñoz

I subbed white whole wheat flour for half the flour amount and used toasted, sliced almonds instead. Other than that, I stuck to the recipe. The rosemary and orange was a really great flavor combination. A sort of Italian inspired zucchini bread. Will definitely make again!


10 months ago lindalandrews

Baked 3 recipes and made 9 small loaves for our Native American dinner. Taste tested four loaves with friends and everyone at the testing and dinner loved this recipe! Several folks at the dinner asked for a copy of the recipe - so my conclusion is that this recipe is a "winner". Thanks


10 months ago Janie Lowe

Delicious! I reduced the sugar to 1.5 cups, just a personal preference, but did not change anything else. I live at 8200' and made no altitude adjustments! Also, I baked one loaf in a glass pan and the other in a metal loaf pan and both came out perfect! Thanks for a great, healthy recipe! XXOOXX


10 months ago hb

This bread made my husband a believer! He isn't much for change when it comes to zucchini or banana bread so adding rosemary and orange flavor was going to be a hard sell. I threw in some raisins and served it up with a smear of jam and he ate half the loaf in one sitting! This is a keeper!


10 months ago shellyzanella

this was delicious! i followed the recipe to the T. i only baked for 45min on my ovens quick back setting (convection) and it was perfect. thank you!


11 months ago Johnny Ringo

I made these into muffins...and they are fantastic! My only substitution was to use coconut oil instead of olive oil...I'd recommend it. The coconut flavor it adds compliments these perfectly. Thank you for a new favorite!!


11 months ago Mary Odendahl

When the zucchini gods are overly generous, I always look for new and different ways to use up the bounty. This is a wonderful way to change up the typical zucchini bread recipe. The orange and rosemary work well in this sweet nutty bread! This is one recipe I will use again. Thank you for sharing! One tip I have is to squeeze out the excess moisture from the shredded zucchini before adding to the batter. Less moisture from the zucchini may help with the texture and volume.


11 months ago LoreneFL

We just made our third batch. We'll be freezing these. I make one batch and bake it all in a bundt pan. Then a light, dripped glaze (confectioners sugar, some melted butter, orange juice, zest and finely chopped rosemary). It just disappears. Orange and rosemary are just wonderful together!


12 months ago zephyrflora

Love zucchini so this sounds about perfect. Just a question: how big are the loaf pans you use? (Last time I did a recipe without knowing the loaf pan size, everything cooked over the brim and my oven was a mess.)


12 months ago Dabblings

They are 8x4x2


12 months ago Dabblings

I meant 8x4x4. I always put pans on a baking sheet (although theses have never run over on me. It's just cheap insurance.


12 months ago zephyrflora

Thanks! And that's a good idea (I always have mine on a grill since I bought a used oven and the sheets don't fit, so even the baking sheets I have to put on the grill so it won't fall through, haha).


12 months ago caroberts77

Love this recipe. I admit, I'm a tinkerer and so I made alterations even though I set out to make it exactly as you had done. Sorry! I just can't seem to help myself. I subbed out 2 of the cups of white flour for whole wheat, I used 3/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup of brown, and 1/4 cup of local honey, I separated the eggs to whip the whites before folding them in at the last possible second, I also did a mixture of zucchini and carrot, and last, I used a mini bundt cake pan. I only baked them for about 30 minutes and they came out awesome. My husband and I had them warm with some frozen vanilla bean yogurt and then we've been munching on them for breakfast this week. :-) One of my faves, got more zucchini coming in our CSA box this week and I'm going to experiment making mini muffins.


12 months ago Amy Hellem

Have you ever made these as muffins (I'm hoping to convince my kids that they are cupcakes). Would you adjust the temp?


12 months ago Dabblings

Oh that is a good question. I have not made them as muffins. I am sure that you could but I have no idea how long to cook them for or if the recipe would need any kind of adjustment. Sorry I'm not any help. I would just google "zucchini muffin" and compare my recipe to one you find and try to get them to line up. If you make them let me know how it turns out!


11 months ago Kateq

I have now made this recipe as muffins (actually one nice bug loaf and six giant muffins) twice. I made the second because everyone loved them and demanded more! I baked the muffins right alongside the loaf, but took them out of the oven after about 28 minutes. Now this is my new favorite zucchini muffin!


11 months ago Kateq

obviously, 'big' not 'bug'...


about 1 year ago food grrrl

Just made this bread ~ it's fantastic! My changes: reduced sugar by 1/4 cup, added 1T cinnamon, used coconut oil in place of olive, used Bob's Red Mill unbleached pastry flour, sprinkled coarse demerara sugar on top before baking.
Love this recipe!!! Thank you:-)


about 1 year ago Kateq

This is my new favorite zucchini bread too! I thought it was lovely and everyone who tried it agreed. I loved the scent of the orange and the rosemary as well as the taste. And how nice to use pretty little zucchinis from a local farm and rosemary snipped from the pot on my deck!


about 1 year ago paige kubicz

This bread did not turn out nearly as good as the comments lead it on to be. I chose it because of how the comments RAVED, but mine ended up pretty dry and sort of flavorless. Followed the recipe exactly, using fresh ingredients from Whole Foods. I used metal bread pans instead of glass, not sure if that makes a difference? I also baked the bread 1 loaf at a time, which took about 35-45 mins a loaf. Not using this recipe again, thanks anyway tho!


about 1 year ago Dabblings

I am sorry the bread did not turn out to meet your expectations. I have made it many times and have never encountered the problems you had.I'm not sure if using metal pans over glass would make a difference or not as I don't own metal pans. Thank you for your feedback though. I hope you find a zucchini bread recipe that you enjoy :)


11 months ago Siretha Gail

does your oven take a while to warm up? mine gets very hot very quickly and holds it for at least 15-20mintues after I've shut down the oven, so I adjust the time for baking and use a few degress lower tempt. all my Nordic ware* suggests 350^ for my Bundt pans. I set my oven to 325^ that way my cakes, et. . . don't over cook or dry out I also bake at the min.suggested time that the "pan maker" suggested (40:00-50:00 minutes for one pan}


11 months ago Dabblings

I have no idea. The best advice I can give you is to start checking the bread 10 minutes early so you can pull it when a tester comes out clean and you won't overcook your bread. Every oven is different so you know what to do better than I would.


over 1 year ago Matilda Luk

Wonderful zucchini bread--the loaf where I put a handful of chocolate chunks were eagerly devoured by my daughter and her playmates this Sunday. The chocolate-less loaves were appreciated by adults. The rosemary and olive oil is a very sophisticated touch--I love the grassy, herbal note--and was much more pronounced the first day than the second (though still delicious!).


over 1 year ago cookingintheheights

Still happily munching our way through first batch of this recipe - lovely. Am going to be better behaved next time and use the specified quantity of sugar, rather than half the amount (I always start out halving and it usually works well, but may have overdid it with this recipe).