Low Sugar Zucchini Bread Recipe

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Low sugar zucchini bread that is moist, dense, and really simple to put together. You can add chocolate chips or nuts or dry fruit and make it a tiny bit different each time.


Every year I plant fewer zucchini plants and every year I am overwhelmed with the amount of zucchini I harvest! I am not sure how this is making any sense but it’s just how it is. Not that I’m complaining… I love zucchini, however, it’s not as easy to preserve as other vegetables.

I don’t can zucchini (can you can zucchini? I’ve never tried…) and I don’t like freezing it. It’s simple enough but mushy when I thaw it and I just don’t care for it much. So instead, I make loaves of this low sugar zucchini bread, freeze it, and call it my way of preserving zucchini!

Low Sugar Zucchini Bread Recipe…

Low sugar zucchini bread that is moist, dense, and really simple to put together. You can add chocolate chips or nuts or dry fruit and make it a tiny bit different each time.

There are many ingredients that you can change in this recipe to make it even healthier, and there are many different kinds of add-ins that you can add to make it a bit different each time, but we’ll go over the basic recipe first and I’ll list all the other options below.

Ingredients…

  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup milk at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of grated zucchini (probably about two medium zucchinis. Make sure to squeeze it so it’s as dry as possible)
  • 1 cup of add-ins like nuts, raisins, or chocolate chips (more options below)

Kitchen Tools…

How to Make Low Sugar Zucchini Bread Step by Step…

butter and sugar added to a bowl

Step 1 – mix the wet ingredients. To the bowl, add melted butter and sugar. Use the mixer to combine…

eggs added into the bowl of wet ingredients

Add two eggs, milk, and vanilla extract and mix them in.

sifting dry ingredients over the wet ingredients

Step 2 – add the dry ingredients. Place the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in the sifter and sift them into the bowl.

low sugar zucchini bread batter ready

Then, mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients just until combined.

grated zucchini

Step 3 – add grated zucchini and add-ins. Cut the two ends off the zucchini and grate it. I never peel my zucchini but you can if you’d like.

grated zucchini and almonds added to the butter

To the bowl, add 1 1/2 cup of grated zucchini and up to one cup of add-ins and fold them in with a spatula. This time I used almonds but there are many other options (they are listed in the FAQ section below).

Low sugar zucchini bread batter in the loaf pan

Step 4 – bake the bread. Butter a 9″ x 5″ loaf pan and pour the batter into the pan. Bake in a preheated 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 60-75 minutes.

low sugar zucchini bread loaf

To check if the bread is ready, you can insert a toothpick in the center of it. If it comes out clean then the bread is baked all the way, if it comes out wet then the center is not baked and the bread needs some more baking time.

I usually check if the bread is ready after 60 minutes, but most of the time in my oven, it takes about 75 minutes. Every oven is a bit different so make sure you check your bread after 50 or 60 minutes. After you make it a couple of times you’ll know better how long you need to bake it.

Once it’s done, take it out of the oven and let it cool in the pan for ten minutes or so. Then take it out of the pan and set on the cooling rack to cool all the way.

low sugar zucchini bread sliced and ready to be served

How to Serve Low Sugar Zucchini Bread…

So obviously, since we only used 1/4 cup of sugar per loaf, this bread is not going to be as sweet as most other zucchini bread recipes. For me personally, it’s sweet enough, however, my kids like it a bit sweeter so usually I drizzle some honey on each slice or I serve each slice spread with a fruit jam of their choice (here are all the jam recipes that are on this blog).

I love using it for breakfast! I’ll just serve a slice of this low sugar zucchini bread with a slice of cheese and a fresh fruit (a banana works really well!). It’s a simple, healthy, and filling breakfast. Of course, you can always serve it next to a cup of coffee or just as a snack throughout the day.

Frequently Asked Questions…

How can I make this bread even healthier?

You can substitute some of the ingredients for healthier alternatives to make this bread even healthier or even vegan if you’d like. You can replace the milk with almond milk. You can replace the sugar with ½ cup of honey. Replace some of the flour with whole wheat flour. You can replace the butter with coconut oil and you can replace the eggs with ground flax seeds (1 egg = 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons of water).

What can I add in?

Add a total of one cup of add-ins per loaf. You can add any kind of nut like pecans, almonds, walnuts and so on. You can add seeds like pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, etc. You can add any kind of dry fruit like cranberries, diced dry apricot, raisins, and so on. Add chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, etc. Or you can add chia seeds or hemp seeds, or flax seeds (don’t add a whole cup of those just a few tablespoons).

Can I use almond flour instead of all purpose flour?

Someone asked me this question in the comments… The problem with almond flour is that it doesn’t absorb liquid as well as other kinds of flour. You might be able to substitute some of the flour for almond flour, however, I wouldn’t substitute the whole amount. You can try to substitute with other flours, though… Like spelt or einkorn if you’d like. You just want a kind of flour that can absorb some of the moisture of the zucchini.

Can I make this bread just a bit sweeter?

Yes, sure. You can use 1/2 cup of sugar or even 3/4 cup of sugar instead of the 1/4 if you want to make it a bit sweeter. If you want to up the other flavors as well, feel free to use a bit more cinnamon or add some ground clove or nutmeg.

Can I double or triple this recipe?

Sure you can!

Where should I store this low sugar zucchini bread?

It will last a couple of days at room temperature in a sealed container or wrapped in plastic wrap, however, I think that it’s best to store it in the fridge. It will last a couple of weeks in the fridge.

Can I freeze this zucchini bread?

Yes! As I mentioned in the beginning of this post, I use this bread as a method to preserve the zucchini that comes out of my garden. Just wrap it well with plastic wrap and place in the freezer (you can pre-slice it if you’d like). It should last up to a year in the freezer. When you are ready to serve it, take it out of the freezer and place on the kitchen counter or the fridge to thaw. Then, if you’d like, you can heat each slice of bread for a few seconds in the microwave before serving it.


This is such an easy recipe! I honestly don’t see a reason to use a lot of sugar when making quick bread. If you’ve been looking for an easy low sugar quick bread recipe, this is it! One of my readers even informed me that she uses this as a basic recipe to make other kinds of loaves of bread too (like using carrots instead of the zucchini and so on). I hope that you’ll give it a try!

Other Quick Bread Recipes on the Blog…

Also, if you are looking for other ways to use zucchini, try this amazing Mediterranean zucchini casserole recipe and these zucchini and corn fritters.

Low Sugar Zucchini Bread

Low Sugar Zucchini Bread

Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Moist, dense, and delicious low sugar zucchini bread that is very quick and easy to put together.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup milk at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of grated zucchini (probably about two medium zucchinis. Make sure to squeeze the grated zucchini so it’s as dry as possible)
  • 1 cup of add-ins like nuts, raisins, or chocolate chips (more options in the notes below)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a bowl, mix the melted butter and sugar.
  3. Add the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract.
  4. Add the flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon into a sifter and sift onto the wet ingredients.
  5. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients.
  6. Add the add-ins and grated zucchini and mix them in with a spatula or a wooden spoon.
  7. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and transfer the batter to the loaf pan.
  8. Bake for 60 to 75 minutes. To check if the bread is ready, insert a toothpick in the center of it. If the toothpick comes out clean, the bread is ready.
  9. Let cool slightly after removing from the oven. Then remove the bread from the pan and set on a wire rack to cool all the way. Serve or wrap in food plastic wrap and freeze for later.

Notes

To make this bread even healthier, here are a few substitute options...

You can substitute some of the ingredients for healthier alternatives to make this bread even healthier or even vegan if you’d like. You can replace the milk with almond milk. You can replace the sugar with ½ cup of honey. Replace some of the flour with whole wheat flour. You can replace the butter with coconut oil and you can replace the eggs with ground flax seeds (1 egg = 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons of water).

Options for add-ins...

Add a total of one cup of add-ins per loaf. You can add any kind of nut like pecans, almonds, walnuts and so on. You can add seeds like pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, etc. You can add any kind of dry fruit like cranberries, diced dry apricot, raisins, and so on. Add chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, etc. Or you can add chia seeds or hemp seeds, or flax seeds (don’t add a whole cup of those just a few tablespoons).

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 9 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 360Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 405mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 3gSugar: 12gProtein: 8g

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12 thoughts on “Low Sugar Zucchini Bread Recipe”

  1. It was just enough sugar to taste perfectly sweet! Love that it’s low sugar and very happy with how it turned out:)

    1. So so happy that you liked it! I often wonder if my breads are sweet enough for others…
      Thanks for the feedback!

  2. Absolutely love this recipe and use it as my base for many variations. Just put chocolate lemon in the oven. Thanks for this great low sugar recipe

    1. How did you do chocolate lemon!? I really want to know. It sounds delicious. I was thinking about trying carrots instead of zucchini but didn’t try yet. So happy you like the recipe!

  3. Jennifer Heleniak

    Hi,
    I was so happy to find a low sugar zucchini bread recipe. I had been looking at Zucchini cakes, but then they listed the carbs at 37g or 39 g per serving. Ouch! But then I looked at yours and it’s 36g carbs per serving–with 1.5 LESS cups of sugar and 2/3 less flour. So it made me wonder–is zucchini itself really high in carbs?

    1. So, it is said that one medium-large zucchini has about 10.1g of carbohydrates… So is you are using let’s say two zucchinis you are already up there in the 20s before the flour and the rest. I think that that’s what you are seeing.
      However, in my opinion, if it comes from a vegetable/fruit it good!

  4. I am usually ok with less sugar in baked goods but this did not taste good at all. It was very bland, needs more cinnamon or other spices to give it some flavor with the sugar being so low. Won’t be making again.

    1. Sorry that you didn’t like it. You can definitely use this as a base and change according to your taste. Add more sugar or cinnamon if you like. It won’t hurt the recipe.

    1. The problem with almond flour is that it doesn’t absorb liquid as wheat flour. I am just concerned that the loaf will be too moist. But the only way to know is to try. I’ve never tried before…

  5. Dear Lee, thank you so much for a fabulous recipe! I made it this afternoon on May 2, 2021. From reading the comments regarding flavor, I added an additional 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, a 1/4 teaspoon of cardamon and about 1/16 to an 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg. The flavor was great. I also substituted coconut oil for the butter, whole wheat flour for the full cup of flour (minus 2 tablespoons – based on high altitude baking guidance – I live at 6600 feet) and just 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts. Total baking time for me was 50 minutes. This goes into my “Final Recipes -Quit Looking for a Better One” binder. Thanks again, Sarah from Colorado

    1. You made it even better and healthier! This sounds delicious. Will definitely give it a try your way when zucchinis are ready in the garden. And, I also have a Final Recipes box! 🙂

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