Can't choose between banana bread and zucchini bread? You don't have to! This recipe combines those two classic quick breads for the ultimate treat! It's easy. It's quick.
And with half the sugar of the average loaf, it's healthy with just the right amount of sweetness! You can even make this moist bread into muffins or mini loaves instead! This is one of my favorite quick breads for an afternoon snack!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Quick and easy, just as a Quick Bread or muffin recipe should be!
- Great way to use up those bananas that ripened with the summer heat in the blink of an eye!
- Freezes well!
- It's zucchini season, and you're being invaded by zucchini! (By the way, if you haven't tried my Chocolate Zucchini Bread, you definitely have got to!!!!)
- Can be made with or without chocolate chips! (I always sneak some in just like I do with my Banana Oatmeal Muffins...shhh!)
- Makes 9-12 muffins or 3 mini loaves of bread instead of a standard loaf if you prefer.
- Bananas - How do you know if your bananas are too ripe or just ripe enough for baking? They should not have green on the peels. As bananas ripen, the starches, in turn, to sugars, which allows us to be able to add less granulated sugar to the recipe. So you're looking for your bananas to have brown freckles covering at least ½ the peel. Totally brown, overripe bananas that are syrupy when peeled are too ripe.
- Zucchini - No need to peel the zucchini first. Can be either yellow (golden) or green fresh zucchini. Small to medium zucchini are best for baking. Large zucchini tends to be much dryer and slightly bitter, and the seeds inside have become large, stiff, and have tough outsides. Many people wonder whether you need to squeeze the liquid out of the zucchini before using it due to too much moisture. The short answer is no. If you grate it and use it immediately, you'll be fine. As grated zucchini sits out, the liquid accumulates, so if you pre-grate it you may need to wring out the excess moisture. FUN FACT: Did you know a zucchini is a summer squash that's also known as a "courgette"?
- Flour - all-purpose, never self-rising flour. Self-rising flour has baking powder and salt added to it, and this recipe already has those ingredients.
- Olive Oil - Can you substitute coconut oil or other cooking oils? Yes! Absolutely! Just sub equal amounts of coconut oil, vegetable oil, or canola oil for the olive oil.
- Sugar - You can substitute ½ cup applesauce for ½ of the sugar in this recipe. So instead of 1 cup of sugar, you would add ½ cup sugar and ½ cup of unsweetened applesauce, but because you will be increasing the amount of liquid with the applesauce, you will need to add an additional ⅓ cup of flour to compensate. Check out this article for more info on Substituting Sugars in baking if you need it.
- Other Variations - If you would like to add nuts, simply fold in ¾ cup walnuts or pecans with the zucchini. If you need special diet recipes for banana or zucchini bread, then let me recommend a few other recipe options, as these types of diets are not my specialty. For a gluten-free banana bread, try this Roasted Banana Bread or try Gluten Free Zucchini Bread; for keto diets, check out this Keto Low Carb Banana Bread or Keto Zucchini Bread.
Step by Step Instructions
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Either spray a standard loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray or line it with parchment paper to easily lift the loaf out. You could also line 9-12 muffin cups in a standard tin or prepare 3 mini loaf pans.
- Mash up the bananas in a 2-cup measuring cup and set it aside.
- Then grate up 1 cup of zucchini and set it aside for just a moment.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir the sugar, olive oil, egg, and vanilla extract together by hand.
- (You can use a mixer or beaters to mix this bread; however, any banana chunks or pieces in the mashed bananas will become completely mashed. Not bad necessarily, but if you want small banana pieces dotting your bread, then mix by hand.)
- Stir in the mashed bananas.
- Stir in the baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.
- Stir in the flour.
- Stir in the shredded zucchini.
- If you want to add ¾ cup of walnuts or pecans, now is the time.
- Mix just until no white streaks remain.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, lined muffin tins, or mini loaf pans.
- Bake for 50 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Tent the bread with tin foil after 25-30 minutes of baking to prevent over-browning.
- Bake 15 minutes for muffins and 20 for mini loaves. Check with a toothpick and bake longer if necessary.
- You'll know your bread is done when a toothpick comes out nearly clean.
- Cool in the bread pan for 10 minutes before turning it out on a wire rack.
- Cool completely, which takes 30-40 minutes.
- Slice into individual slices and enjoy!
Recipe FAQs and Expert Tips
Honestly, I have not used any substitutions for the flour myself, but that doesn't mean it can't be done. Check out this Guide to Flour Substitutions for information that can help you know how and what could be switched out.
The most common reason is that the batter was mixed too vigorously or too quickly. This causes lots of tiny bubbles to be caught in the batter, and they pop upon cooling. That doesn't mean you need to mix your batter super slow; just remember it's not a race.
I store mine loosely covered or in a Ziploc bag that's not completely sealed on the countertop. People always wonder why their banana or zucchini breads get soggy, and it's because bananas and/or zucchini continue to make quick breads moist as they sit, so sealing them tightly, especially if you live where it's humid, will make them soggy. Check out this guide for more info on how to store muffins and other quick breads.
In general, when stored properly, banana zucchini bread will be good for 4 days, maybe a day or two longer if stored in the fridge.
Once your loaf is completely cool, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Label it and pop it in the freezer for up to 6 months. Thaw at room temperature.
Related Banana or Zucchini Recipes
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Easy Banana Zucchini Bread Recipe
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 cup mashed ripe bananas about 3 bananas
- ½ cup Olive Oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1-½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup shredded zucchini
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Shred 1 cup of zucchini. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg, mashed bananas, olive oil, and vanilla.
- Stir in the cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Stir in the flour, then the shredded zucchini.
- Spread the batter in the loaf pan and bake for about 50 minutes.
- Tent the bread with tin foil 25-30 minutes into baking to avoid over-browning.
- When done, a toothpick should come out mostly clean.
- Cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.
- Cool completely. Enjoy!
- Bananas should be well freckled with brown spots but not completely brown.
- Small to medium zucchini, either yellow or green, work best.
- If you want to add chocolate chips or nuts, add either ¾ cup chocolate chips or ¾ cup walnuts or pecans when you add the grated zucchini.
- For 9-12 muffins, bake for 15 minutes before checking for doneness. Bake longer if necessary.
- For mini loaves, bake for 20 minutes before checking for doneness. Tent and bake longer if necessary.