Zucchini Bread Recipe

Grandma Dot’s Zucchini Bread Recipe

As the winter months roll in, so do our cravings for warm and sweet comfort foods. If you’re looking for a delicious recipe to appease your sweet tooth, this particular recipe will interest you. The following zucchini bread recipe is not only very delicious, but it is also extremely simple to make as well.

If you’re like me and have never really been a fan of zucchini bread (or zucchini in general), I would encourage you to give this recipe a try. Unlike a lot of zucchini bread recipes that happen to be somewhat bland and dry, this one is packed with flavor and is delightfully moist.

This zucchini bread has the perfect balance of flavorful spices and good texture, and it practically melts in your mouth while eating it. It’s no wonder this yummy recipe has been passed down for three generations. It’s just that good.

Grandma’s Recipe: A “Sweet” Story

Over the years, my husband’s grandma has always had many specialties to share. But one, in particular, was her zucchini bread. My husband would always go on and on about how wonderful it was and that there was no other zucchini bread comparable to hers.

When my husband was a very small child, one of his fondest memories of his grandma was baking sweet treats with her in the kitchen. So, as soon as the autumn season arrived, lots of baking would inevitably begin.

He says that one of his most memorable parts of making zucchini bread with her (except for eating it!) was watching it slowly rise in his old 50s-era oven. Though those memories and days have passed, he’s brought back in time whenever we continue the tradition in our family.

I Was Slightly Skeptical

Before I tried her “famous zucchini bread,” I was always somewhat skeptical about the recipe. From my experience, the zucchini bread I had in the past was always dry and tasteless. My husband reassured me that it would be a timeless favorite once I tried it. Guess what? He was absolutely right.

It wasn’t until we took a trip to visit Grandma Dot that my husband asked her for her recipe. Since she wasn’t one to keep recipes “secret” and would’ve been glad to share them with anyone who asked, she was thrilled to share them with me. She pulled out a treasure trove of recipes.

After some time of looking through her recipe collection, she finally pulled out the famed zucchini bread recipe and graciously let me copy it down.

Then, shortly after we returned home from visiting her, my husband had a modest request. He wanted me to make her famed zucchini bread. No surprise, right? As I followed the recipe step by step, I found that it was surprisingly easy. I don’t know why, but zucchini bread just never interested me before, and I have a very long history of baking (I worked full-time in a farm country store/bakery).

The Best Zucchini Bread, Hands-Down

It was indeed the best zucchini bread I had ever eaten. If I remember correctly, my husband and I ate the entire loaf in one night. It really was that good.

I have been baking it ever since, and it has now become a family favorite. We even sent some through the mail to Grandma since she can no longer practice her passion for cooking. Being the great cook she was, even she thought it was excellent.

Our children love this recipe, and it’s yet another way to get them interested in cooking. Now, our kids stare through the glass of the oven, watching Mommy and Daddy’s creations take form.

I will forever love this recipe because of the way it tastes, of course. But it’s also special because of all the childhood memories my husband has had in times past and all the future memories our family will have in times to come. Our family loves traditions, not because we feel some strange begrudging obligation to keep them, but because we really enjoy the memories they create.

In our family, time together is special and of utmost importance because we really love one another that much. Now it’s my turn to share this recipe with you so that, if you please, you can make this part of your family tradition as you create your own special memories with the ones you love.

Zucchini Bread Recipe

Fresh Zucchini Bread Loaf


  • 3 Cups of All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Cups of Sugar (We Use 1 Cup, Honey Sometimes Too)
  • 1 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 3 Teaspoons of Cinnamon
  • 2 Cups of Grated Zucchini
  • 1 Cup of Chopped Walnuts (optional)
  • 1 Cup of Raisins
  • 3 Eggs
  • 3 Teaspoons of Vanilla
  • 1 Cup of Oil (Any of Your Choice: Butter, Lard, Coconut oil, etc.)

Preparation Instructions:

Step 1 – Before you get started, Preheat your oven to 350° F

Step 2 Grease 2 bread pans with coconut oil or butter. Also, you can use 2 lined cupcake trays with foil or paper liners if that’s your preference.

Step 3 – With a grater, grate your zucchini on the medium-sized side (the same side you’d use for shredded cheese). Depending on the size of your zucchinis, you may need 3-4. However, you can use 2 larger zucchini as long as you get 2 cups worth of grated zucchini. The larger zucchinis tend to taste a bit more tart, which is great for this recipe. We prefer using more mature zucchini.

Step 4 – After grating the zucchini, get out a large mixing bowl. Combine and mix all ingredients: Flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, chopped walnuts (if using), raisins, and grated zucchini. Mix together until well combined.

Note: We now use whole-wheat flour because we think it tastes better than regular flour. Also, we usually don’t add the walnuts since my husband isn’t a huge fan of them. Grandma said she didn’t usually add them either, but she didn’t on occasion, depending on who she was making it for.

Step 5 – Whisk the eggs, vanilla, and oil in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

Note: You can use canola oil in this recipe; however, I prefer coconut oil or butter. Not only is coconut oil healthier, but it also makes it much moister. If I don’t use butter, I will usually at least brush it on after baking.

Step 6 – Next, pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and mix until very well combined. Ensure there are no lumps and your batter is very well mixed. After all, you don’t want to bite into a clump of baking soda!

Step 7 – Slowly pour the batter into your greased bread/cupcake pans.  You can scoop your batter out with an ice cream scoop or ladle to decrease mess and spills. Fill the bread pans 3/4 of the way full or until the batter is evenly dispersed. If you’re making zucchini cupcakes, fill each liner 3/4 full. Don’t overfill. You don’t want zucchini bread all over the bottom of your oven.

Zucchini Bread Slices

Step 8 – Place your zucchini bread into the oven and bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes. For cupcakes, you’ll only need to bake for 30 minutes. If you have a touchy oven prone to cooking unevenly, you may want to check your zucchini bread every 20-30 minutes.

Since some ovens cook unevenly, you may need to rotate your pan during the process.

Step 9 – If you’re uncertain whether the zucchini bread or cupcakes are thoroughly cooked, stick a toothpick into the center to see if it comes out clean. If it does, you’re finished baking.

After you remove the bread from the oven, place a clean dishcloth over the top and allow it to cool for a few minutes. Note: If you want your zucchini bread to be super moist, tightly wrap aluminum foil over it as soon as you take it out of the oven before allowing it to cool. 

Optional – If you want to go all out, you can frost your loaves with cream cheese frosting. This is especially great if you decide to make muffins with your batter. If you’re not a fan of cream cheese, opt for a typical sugar icing or glaze instead.

You can serve your freshly made zucchini bread piping hot or allow it to cool completely before eating. Also, it’s great for breakfast.  It is delicious any way you want it, and there isn’t one perfect way to eat it because it’s perfect for any occasion.

In our family, we’ll sometimes make 4-6  loaves (double/triple batch) to freeze the extras for eating later or gift them to friends and family.

A Few Final Words

I hope you will forever enjoy this recipe as much as our family has for generations. And if you like it, which I can almost guarantee you will, please don’t hesitate to share it with your friends and family.

Lastly, I’d like to give special thanks to Grandma Dot. She was always a wonderful cook who loved spending time with her family (especially her grandkids) and was quite a hard worker. She is now almost 98 years old and is as funny and loveable as ever. Thank you, Gramma Dot, for sharing your famous zucchini bread recipe. We love you.

Update: Gramma Dot passed away at age 100. We will miss her, her legacy, her infectious laugh, and her life greatly. We hope her recipe brings joy to your family.

Zucchini Bread Recipe FAQs

What type of zucchini is best for zucchini bread?

Most recipes recommend young, small to medium-sized zucchini that are moist and tender, not larger mature zucchini that have more seeds and tougher skin.

That said, our family actually prefers making it with larger zucchinis, preferably right out of the garden. The larger zucchini tend to have a strong zucchini flavor and slightly more tart skin, which we love for this recipe.

Does the skin need to be removed from the zucchini?

The skin can be left on for zucchini bread. Just wash the zucchini well and on. The skin provides extra fiber and amazing flavor, especially the larger ones.

How much zucchini is needed for a zucchini bread recipe?

Most zucchini bread recipes call for 2 to 3 cups of grated zucchini. This is about two medium-sized zucchini grated. Too much extra zucchini can make the bread too moist. Then again, that may be the desired result, so it’s up to your preference.

Can you freeze grated zucchini for zucchini bread?

Yes, grated zucchini can be frozen for 2-3 months to use later in zucchini bread. Drain excess liquid, spread flat in a single layer on a baking sheet, and freeze before transferring to a freezer bag. We’ve done this a few times, and it works well.

What can you substitute for zucchini in zucchini bread?

Some alternatives are grated carrots, applesauce, mashed banana, crushed pineapple, or pumpkin puree. You may need to adjust other wet ingredients slightly. If you swap out the zucchini for something else, it’s no longer zucchini bread. But the rest of the recipe makes excellent banana bread.

You can also try using some orange zest and cranberries, which are absolutely amazing.

What spices are commonly used in zucchini bread?

Popular spices are cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and allspice. Vanilla extract adds flavor as well. Adjust amounts to your taste preferences.

Does zucchini bread freeze well?

Zucchini bread can be frozen for 2-3 months, preferably. Let the loaf cool completely first, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or foil and place it in a freezer bag. We’ve kept it in the freezer for as long as six months without any issues. Thaw at room temperature before serving.

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