Grandma's Zucchini Bread

July 22, 2013

Every week, we’re unearthing Heirloom Recipes -- dishes that have made their way from one generation's kitchen to the next.

Today: Jacqui Scoggin (a.k.a. goodthingsgrow) shares the first recipe that got her eating zucchini. 

Zucchini Bread

Zucchini bread: two words that conjure up many memories for me. This recipe was the first way, and for a long time the only way, I would even touch zucchini.

Zucchini Grater

My grandma, Dolores, was an avid home cook and gardener. She and my grandpa used to tend a large vegetable and flower garden in the suburbs of Seattle and when I'd come over in the summer, she would always exclaim that there was far too much zucchini to harvest. Her solution was to make several batches of zucchini bread during our visits because she couldn’t get my cousins and I to eat fresh zucchini any other way -- sneaking it into bread was probably the only secret she kept from us.

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Zucchini Bread

Slightly warm from the oven was my favorite way to eat it. I could hardly wait for it to cool before cutting a thick slice and happily sitting down at her kitchen table to enjoy it. As I got older, she would insist that I try every zucchini recipe she discovered. I finally gave in and tasted a lightly breaded and fried version that was completely unlike the watered down, mushy zucchini that I was expecting. This was good news for her and my grandpa -- and when I lived in their basement for a year during college, I could finally help them out with their zucchini problem. She and I would swap recipes and spend afternoons in the garden weeding or eating something delicious.

Grandma Dolores

Sometimes I wish I could still go over for a lazy afternoon and bake, but at least I have the memories and recipes from the times we did share together.

Grandma's Zucchini Bread

Makes 2 loaves

3 cups whole wheat or all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 eggs
3/4 cup canola or melted coconut oil
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped toasted walnuts (optional)
1 cup dried cranberries (optional)

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

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I'm a Pacific NW native, nature lover and outdoor enthusiast, with a garden behind my home that keeps my belly full. My husband and I have a weekly ritual of gathering with friends for a laid-back feast; it’s possibly our favorite night of the week. My husband and I also run a small handmade and graphic design business called Year Round Co. Please check our work out at


Suzanne R. January 7, 2015
There were 9 in our family and my mom was a fabulous cook! She had me cooking with her when I was only 8 or 9 yrs. old; no better way to learn than hands on experience from very young! Unfortunately, she passed away in her early 60's but, in addition to all my memories, I also inherited a wealth of recipes in her recipe box, both hers and my grandmothers! We always had an abundance of homegrown zucchini to use up. I think my Mom made the BEST zucchini bread EVER! Everyone loved it and I've never seen had another bread like it! The recipe makes 2 9"x5" breads and they freeze beautifully too. She also made a delicious zucchini soup with cheese; it freezes well too!
I love your website and your unique recipes! Keep up the good work!
Gayle September 2, 2013
Can you advise as to how to make this gluten free? Thank you!
Jacqui September 3, 2013
Hi Gayle, I've never made this recipe gluten free before, but my best guess would be to try one of those pre-mixed gluten free flours to replace all the flour in the recipe.
Sharon August 26, 2013
I too am a happy gardener and like to eat healthy. I avoid frying anything and have found a few recipes for my abundant zucchini; barely sauté diced zucchini (don't over cook)must still have some crisp edges, then add a can of crisp kernel corn, heat through and season to taste; cut zucchini lengthwise and BBQ on a flat vegetable grill with olive oil and season to taste; cut lengthwise lay on flat foil lined sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, broil until golden brown then sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese, melt then pull from oven.
Shannon G. August 13, 2013
Allie, I don't have a zuccini bread recipe, but to use up a lot of zuccini in a savory dish, I make long strands using a julienne peeler I got from Pampered Chef:

Then I salt the zuccini and let it drain a bit, squeeze out the excess water, using a muslin towel, and end up with spagetti like strands that can be used in many ways. I like to make a lemon & xv olive oil dressing, with a lot of lemon zest and use this as a base for other ingredients. I have also used this as a substitute and/or an addition to pasta to lighten up a dish.
allie July 22, 2013
Does anyone have a recipe that includes a high ratio of zucchini? Or would it be too watery?
cara592 July 22, 2013
mini chocolate chips also go really well in zuccinni bread