This post may contain affiliate sales links. Please read my disclosure policy.
There is nothing better than fresh Zucchini Bread in the middle of summer! This particular zucchini bread recipe is a buttery one, made with simple pantry ingredients and topped with lemon zest and sugar for an extra sweet topping. Let the zucchini baked goods roll! Thanks to plentiful gardens around the country, we can make and enjoy fried zucchini, zucchini brownies, zucchini enchiladas and this fabulous zucchini bread recipe all summer long.
Better than Grandma’s
Growing up, my Grandma had the most amazing garden and year to year would always have more zucchinis than she would know what to do with. Of course she would grate it up and add it to random recipes here and there, but the main way she would use all her zucchini was adding it to her Zucchini Bread Recipe that we would go crazy over. After getting my paws on that recipe after she passed, I realized that no matter how I tried, it would never be quite as good as Grandma’s.
So, although Grandma will always have the ultimate homemade recipe for zucchini bread (in my mind), I’ve made my own delicious, buttery, lemony version that is just as dreamy in different ways.
My Zucchini Bread Recipe
This particular recipe that I developed for zucchini bread is a lighter, sweeter version than many others on the internet. Many bake up darker than I prefer, and call for the addition of chocolate chips, nuts, cinnamon, raisins (ew) or other items.
My recipe doesn’t call for any extra add-ins and bakes light, moist and sweet thanks to butter, oil, buttermilk and of course zucchini! Topped with a simple lemon-sugar, this becomes the sweetest addition to any breakfast, afternoon tea or late-night snack.
Why You Should Bake with Zucchini
Just like a carrot cake, banana bread or pumpkin bread, the addition of a mashed fruit or grated vegetable into a cake batter is a welcome one, adding in not only nutrition but moisture! The warm summer months are when zucchinis are in season and when you’re probably finding lots of zucchini recipes pop up online. It’s the perfect time to experiment and add the extra benefits zucchini can bring to your baked goods. Try my Zucchini Lemon Poppyseed Cookies!
How to Prep Zucchini for Zucchini Bread
Most recipes using fresh zucchini in this way will have you grate your zucchini and then remove any extra moisture.
- Wash your zucchini. No need to peel!
- Cut off one of the ends.
- Grate using a box grater or other medium to coarse grate.
- Transfer zucchini to a clean kitchen towel or several paper towels stacked together and wring out any extra moisture.
- Now your zucchini is ready to use! Alternately, you can store in ziploc bags and keep in the fridge or freezer for a later date.
How to Make Homemade Zucchini Bread
You only need about 15 minutes and a few pantry staples to make this simple zucchini bread batter!
Preheat oven. Grease a light colored loaf pan very well and set aside. Grate and prepare zucchini like mentioned above.
Make the Zucchini Bread Batter
In a large bowl, mix canola oil, butter and sugar together until well combined. Add in eggs and vanilla and stir again until mixed and completely smooth.
Stir flour, baking powder and salt together separately.
Alternate adding in the dry mixture with the buttermilk, starting and ending with dry.
Gently stir in grated zucchini by hand.
Pour into Pans, Top with Lemon Sugar + Bake
Pour into prepared pan. Stir sugar together with lemon zest in a small bowl until well combined. Sprinkle over the top of the loaf.
Bake 45-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
Cool + Serve
Cool 10-15 minutes before removing from pan and cooling completely. Enjoy!!
Storing Zucchini Bread
Cover with foil or plastic wrap or place in a plastic bag to prevent drying out. Properly stored, zucchini bread will stay fresh 1-2 days.
Can I freeze Zucchini Bread?
Yes! Wrap bread tightly in plastic wrap or foil. Zucchini bread will stay fresh in the freezer for 2-3 months.
Like this Zucchini Bread Recipe? Try these:
- Fried Zucchini
- Zucchini Pizza Casserole
- Zucchini Enchiladas
- The Best Zucchini Brownies
- Zucchini Fritters
- Sausage and Peppers Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Zoodles in a Lemon Cream Sauce
- …or check out my recipe index with all the zucchini related recipes on my site.
Be sure to pin/print/share/bookmark/email this recipe because it’s a great one to have on hand for the warmer summer months!
Have a great day, friends!
Zucchini Bread Recipe
For the zucchini bread-
- 1 small zucchini grated, about 1 1/4 cups
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1/4 cup butter softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
For the Lemon Sugar Topping-
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a light colored loaf pan very well and set aside.
- Grate zucchini on medium grater. Squeeze out excess moisture and dry on paper towels. Measure out 1 1/4 cups.
- In a large bowl, mix canola oil, butter and sugar together until well combined. Add in eggs and vanilla and stir again until mixed and completely smooth.
- Stir flour, baking powder and salt together in a separate bowl. Alternate adding in flour mixture and buttermilk, starting and ending with flour. Scrape sides and mix again briefly to ensure a smooth batter.
- Fold in zucchini by hand and pour into prepared pan.
- For the lemon sugar, stir sugar together with lemon zest in a small bowl until well combined. Sprinkle over the top of the loaf.
- Bake zucchini bread 45-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10-15 minutes before removing from pan and cooling completely.
Sorry – I was just not a fan of this recipe. I really wanted to love it but guess I’m just set on my tried and true standard zucchini bread recipe I make every year. The topping was delicious tho and may incorporate into my other recipe. On a side note tho, a friend of mine did like it a lot so gave to him to take home.
Yum, Love this recipe , especially the lemon zest sugar topping it added the complete compliment to a great zucchini bread…. I like this so much more than the other basic zucchini bread recipes…. Highly recommended, this is a must keep recipe, tried and true!! Thank you 😊
Love this recipe!!! I use olive oil instead of canola and the flavor combo is outstanding.
Thank you for sharing this recipe…. I have been searching for a Light colored Zucchini recipe….
Perfectly, PERFECT! Delicious.
Can you use frozen zucchini on this recipe?
I enjoy zucchini anything so I am excited to make this one with frozen zucchini from my garden this summer
Love this! Yum.
I am always looking for new zucchini bread recipes and this one looks really good.
I’m leaving a comment on this recipe because I accidentally order four bags of four zucchini in each bag for a total of 16 zucchini. I thought I was ordering 4 zucchini. Haha. Anyway I need zucchini recipes!
I can’t wait to make this recipe, it looks delicious!
This looks to die for. I can’t wait to try it with my family sometime.
Will have to try this recipe next year when my garden inevitably over produces zucchini and summer squash again.
I have tried countless zucchini bread recipes unable to find one I truly loved; until now. This recipe is perfect. My kids have asked me to make it several times now.
I love it. So do my colleagues in the office :-).
I love this soft zucchini bread recipe Lauren. It’s delicious and easy to make.
How do I adjust this recipe for high altitude?
There is no Pinterest Ico – How can I add it to my Pinterest file?
Try this Annette: https://pin.it/ml24f3bmmmq45v
[…] The Best Zucchini Bread […]
How can I put some of your recipes into Pinterest. There is no Pinterest icon on your individual recipes.
I wish I had found this about a month ago! I had a zucchini plant that was going crazy, making about 3 ready-to-eat zucchinis a week. I thought up every recipe possible but this one sounds great. When I plant again next year I’ll be sure to include this in my zucchini-packed recipe repertoire! c:
I was searching for a new lemon zucchini recipe, I am not sure why, as I have the same recipe of your grandmothers. It has been a favourite in our family.
I found it years ago in a cooking magazine, tried it out and we look forward to it every year at peak zucchini season.
I just found your blog the other day and i love it, so many great recipes to try.
I just finished making this Zucchini bread recipe and it is delicious.
I actually made it into 6 mini loafs and they are adorable.
Thanks for sharing this great recipe and thanks to your grandma too 🙂