Gluten-Free Zucchini Bread
Why this recipe works
There is no better way to enjoy summer’s bountiful zucchini season than enjoying a slice of this delicious gluten-free zucchini bread recipe warm with a slather of butter on it. Whether you are looking for an easy gluten-free bread for breakfast or dessert, this recipe is it!
Lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, this gluten-free quick bread recipe is soft, moist and so flavorful. It’s so simple to make and freezes well, so you can have zucchini bread anytime!
Do you want to know what makes this the BEST gluten-free zucchini bread? It’s tall! One of my pet peeves is a quickbread that is too short. It’s just disappointing when that happens. No short slices of bread here! This recipe uses almost as much batter as some other recipes use for two loaves! The result? Tall slices that are ready to be topped with butter for your next breakfast.
You’ll love how easily this zucchini bread with applesauce comes together. Just mix it all together and bake in a loaf pan until moist and tender. It’s perfect for gift giving, too. Just make a double batch of this recipe and save one for later or gift it to a friend or neighbor. It always gets rave reviews!
- gluten-free flour blend – I have tested this recipe with both Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten Free Flour Blend and King Arthur Baking Measure-for-Measure Gluten Free Flour Blend. Both of these flour blends are meant to be a 1:1 swap for all-purpose flour.
- xanthan gum – Xanthan gum is a common ingredient in gluten-free baking. If your gluten-free flour blend does not contain xanthan gum in it, you will need to add it to the recipe. Xanthan gum improves the elasticity of gluten-free baked goods so that they do not crumble and fall apart.
- unsweetened applesauce – I love to use unsweetened applesauce in my gluten-free quick breads. It keeps them moist and adds to the texture. Use unsweetened applesauce since sweetened applesauce will make the zucchini bread too sweet.
- ground nutmeg – I find that nutmeg adds a little punch of flavor that takes zucchini bread to the next level. Don’t use too much nutmeg because it will overpower the zucchini bread. The amount in the recipe is just the right amount.
- turbinado sugar – A coarse, raw sugar like turbinado sugar adds some crunch to the top of your zucchini bread. You can use raw sugar or demerara sugar in its place. Basically, any large sugar crystal works well. If you’re in a pinch, you can use granulated white sugar as well for a bit of crunch.
How to prepare zucchini for zucchini bread
Use the largest hole on your grater
You will need 2 cups of grated zucchini for this recipe. I like to use a box grater on the largest hole of the grater. Thicker grated zucchini is best for zucchini bread because it will not completely dissolve into the bread and you will see chunks in the bread which is ideal if you ask me!
You can also use the grating attachment on your food processor. If it has two different sized holes like mine does, use the larger of the two.
You don’t need to peel zucchini for zucchini bread. Just grate it with the skin on. I rinse and dry my fresh zucchini before grating, to make sure it is clean.
No need to squeeze
I do not squeeze my zucchini with a towel for zucchini bread. I like to keep some of the moisture, so I just blot it with a paper towel or clean kitchen towel to soak up excess moisture.
However, not all zucchini have the same moisture content. I’ve found that homegrown zucchini from the garden has more moisture than store-bought zucchini. To help you measure, your 2 cups of zucchini should weigh about 200-220g after blotting.
This gluten free zucchini bread with applesauce is incredibly easy to make. To help you make this recipe perfectly every time, follow the steps below with matching photos. For ingredient measurements, detailed instructions, and a printable recipe, please scroll down to the recipe card!
While I love this simple zucchini bread recipe without mix-ins you can add up to 1.5 cups of mix-ins to this recipe for a fun variation on a classic:
- Add chocolate chips to this recipe for a gluten-free chocolate chip zucchini bread recipe! I suggest adding about 1 cup of chocolate chips to this recipe.
- Dried fruits, such as dried cranberries, dried currants, or raisins, can be added to the recipe. Start with ½ cup of dried fruit.
- Toasted walnuts or pecans would be a great addition to this zucchini bread recipe. I suggest ½ cup to 1 cup of chopped toasted nuts added to this bread recipe.
- Line your 9x-5 loaf pan with parchment paper for easy removal from the pan and easy cleanup.
- There are multiple ways to tell if your zucchini bread is done cooking. The top should be browned and when you insert a long skewer into the bread, it should come out clean with just a few moist crumbs. Alternatively, you can insert a thermometer into the bread and the internal temperature should reach 200°F (93°C).
- This zucchini bread recipe makes one tall loaf of bread. You can easily make a double batch and freeze one loaf for later or to give away to a friend.
- Store leftovers wrapped tight or in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2-3 days. For longer storage, place it in the refrigerator and it should last up to 4-5 days. For even longer storage, wrap it very tight so no air can get in and freeze it for up to 6 months. You can freeze slices or an entire loaf. Defrost at room temperature before serving.
Typically, zucchini bread is not gluten-free because it is made with all-purpose flour or wheat flour. I’ve made this recipe gluten-free by using a gluten-free flour blend. This recipe is also naturally dairy-free by using vegetable oil instead of butter!
You can use this recipe to make zucchini muffins. It will make about 14-15 muffins when you fill them ¾ of the way high. Bake at 375F for 18-22 minutes.
I personally like to grate zucchini on the largest hole of my box grater. I like to see bits of zucchini in the bread and love the texture it gives. If you use the smallest hole of the grater I find that the zucchini kind of dissolves into the bread and you don’t get pretty green speckles.
Yes! You can freeze zucchini bread. You can freeze a whole loaf or individual slices. If I’m keeping the bread for myself, I like to freeze slices so I can defrost at room temperature for just about an hour and it’s ready to eat. If I’m saving a loaf for entertaining or to give away to a friend, I freeze a whole loaf. Just wrap it up tight and freeze for up to 6 months.
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Did you make this recipe?
I’d love to know! Please rate it and leave a comment below. You can also share your pictures and tag @adashofmegnut on Instagram.
Gluten-Free Zucchini Bread
- 2 cups gluten-free flour blend (280 g, I used Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Flour Blend which already contains xanthan gum)
- 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (if your blend doesn’t already contain it)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar (150g)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (100g)
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil (75g)
- 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce (90g)
- 2 large eggs (at room temperature)
- 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups zucchini (shredded on the largest holes of your grater (220g, about 1/2 lb zucchini))
- 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar or raw sugar
- Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and line a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour blend, xanthan gum (if using), baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, vegetable oil, unsweetened applesauce, eggs, and vanilla. Whisk until combined.
- Blot the zucchini with a paper towel or kitchen towel lightly to remove excess moisture. You do not need to wring it out completely. Note: The 2 cups is measured before it is blotted. After blotting, the zucchini will weigh approximately 200-220g. Whisk the zucchini into the wet ingredients.
- Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Stir until no more streaks of flour remain.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar.
- Bake at 350F on the center rack for 55-70 minutes, until the zucchini bread is cooked through and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean with just a few crumbs. The internal temperature of the bread should be 200°F (93°C) when taken with a thermometer. Cover the bread with aluminum foil if it is browning too quickly.
- Set the bread to cool on a wire rack completely before slicing.
- If you have celiac disease or are gluten-free you will need to ensure that all ingredients are gluten-free. Please always check labels or consult the manufacturer as ingredients change and manufacturing processes vary.
- I have tested this zucchini bread with both Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten Free Baking Flour (in the blue bag) and King Arthur Baking Measure for Measure Gluten Free Flour, both of which already contain xanthan gum. I cannot verify that other flour blends work with this recipe as I have not tested them.
- This recipe will not work as written with almond flour or coconut flour.
- You do not need to squeeze the grated zucchini dry. I just blot the zucchini with a towel to soak up some of the excess moisture but don’t squeeze it.
What if I wanted to make this without the oil?
Hi Janis, I haven’t tested this, but you can substitute the oil with an additional 1/3 cup of applesauce – so you’d have 2/3 cup total applesauce in the recipe. The texture may be slightly different without the oil. Hope this helps!