I searched for what must have been two hours for the perfect zucchini bread recipe. I didn’t find it. It may have been my definition of “perfect”.
How did I define the perfect zucchini bread? Let me tell you…
- Must use as little sugar as possible
- Must use as much zucchini as possible
- No butter
- Preferably whole wheat
- Hopefully very little oil
- No nuts because I’d get complaints from the kids
- Chocolate doesn’t hurt
I found a recipe from Our Best Bites that sounded like it might work, but I tweaked it and made it my own. The original blog post by Our Best Bites has a variety of helpful hints about how to evenly distribute chocolate chips and how to avoid the crater in the middle of your bread – I highly recommend reading it.
Although it sounded fantastic as written, I made a few changes to lower the calories, fat, and sugar. The original recipe called for 2 C all-purpose flour. I used a cup of whole wheat pastry flour and a cup of all purpose flour. Instead of 1/2 C of canola oil, I used a 1/4 C of oil and 1/4 C unsweetened apple sauce (you may even be able to use all applesauce, but I haven’t tested that yet). I left out the chocolate chips, which actually didn’t matter in the end – it was still very chocolatey and still gooey.
Best of all, this bread is kid-friendly. I brought it to my son’s play group after school and every kid who tried it (even those who knew if was zucchini bread), loved it and asked for more. My husband even asked if it was a brownie.
1 C whole wheat pastry flour
1 C all-purpose flour
2 t cinnamon
1/2 t salt
1 1/2 t baking soda
6 T unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 C canola oil
1/4 C unsweetened applesauce
1 C sugar
1/4 C brown sugar
2 t vanilla
1/2 C sour cream
3 C grated zucchini
3/4 C mini chocolate chips (optional)
1 T brown sugar
1 T white sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 (8″ or 9″) loaf pans and set aside.
Mix topping ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
Using a large-holed grater, grate zucchini. I used 3 medium sized zucchini.
Place flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
With a stand or hand mixer beat oil, white sugar, brown sugar, and eggs until combined and slightly fluffy, 1-2 minutes.
Add vanilla and sour cream and mix by hand until combined.
Gently stir in the grated zucchini.
Take a spoonful of the flour mixture and stir in with the chocolate chips (that will help keep them evenly distributed.) If you only have regular chocolate chips, or a chocolate bar, just give it a chop so it’s the size of mini chocolate chips. Stir remaining flour mixture into batter and mix just until combined. Add chocolate chips and stir to combine.
Divide the batter between the two pans. and sprinkle topping over each.
Bake in your preheated 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes.
When it’s done a toothpick or skewer should come out without batter on it and the top will be gorgeous and cracked with sugar.
Let it cool on a rack for 5-10 minutes and then remove from pans.