Recipe: Healthy-ish Moist Zucchini Breakfast Bread

This deliciously moist zucchini breakfast bread recipe was born out of stress baking – which I only recently found out is actually a thing. My issue used to be that I didn’t want to eat all the things I baked, since most baked goods are primarily butter, sugar and flour. That’s when I started experimenting with healthier versions of baked goods. Plus, you can also easily freeze this loaf of zucchini bread for a hearty breakfast another day. Jump to Recipe
Homemade Healthy Zucchini Breakfast Bread Loaf Flatlay Cut
Homemade Healthy Zucchini Breakfast Bread Loaf

What does “Healthy-ish” mean?

I’ve attempted to make a number of “healthy baked goods”, for example these Sugar-Free Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, where I replaced sugar with Natvia’s baking stevia. But there are always downsides to extreme replacements. These sugar-free cookies tasted pretty good, but I never got “full” or really satisfied from them. They’re much lower in calories (stevia has zero calories) and you can feel it in the stomach. I would instead end up eating many cookies in one sitting, defeating the whole purpose of a “healthy” option. So that’s why this is a Healthy-ish zucchini bread. It still has sugar and fat in it, but substantially less amounts.

Much Healthier than Store-Bought Cakes

This recipe makes a delicious loaf of zucchini bread. It’s moist like a banana bread and aromatic like a cinnamon-y carrot cake. It’s healthy and nutritious, so you could guiltlessly eat it for breakfast. If you’re feeling extra, you could even top it up with some yogurt, healthy granola (I used BEASTFAST‘s latest Chai Spice & Coconut Granola) and fruit.
Healthy Zucchini Bread topped with yogurt and BEASTFAST Granola Blueberries
Healthy Zucchini Bread topped with yogurt and BEASTFAST granola

Healthy Substitutions in this Recipe

This zucchini breakfast bread is much lower in overall calories compared with similar store-bought baked goods, such as the typical banana bread or carrot cake. The main differences are:
  1. Much less sugar: It uses significantly less sugar than other recipes, and about a quarter of one very popular recipe I found! As a result it’s not very sweet and that’s how I like it, especially if I’m eating it for breakfast. Some sugar is still needed to make it tasty.
  2. Replaced “fat” with almond milk: First, this recipe uses olive oil, which is (arguably) more nutritious than butter. Second, I’ve replaced half of the usual “fat” content with almond milk, which is substantially lower in calories.
  3. Half whole wheat flour: Using part whole wheat flour also boosts the nutritional content of the zucchini bread by increasing its fibre content. I didn’t try using only whole wheat flour though; I was afraid it would make the bread too bitter or change the texture.
Healthy Zucchini Breakfast Bread Loaf
Healthy Zucchini Breakfast Bread Loaf

Compared with Baked Goods in Coffee Shops

One slice of this zucchini breakfast bread is only 190kcal, with 9g of sugar, 2g of fibre and 4g of protein. The fibre content is actually high enough to be labelled “Source of Fibre”! In contrast, at Starbucks, one slice of carrot cake is 323kcal and banana bread is 381kcal, with 28g and 24g of sugar in them respectively.

Use only one mixing bowl

Since I was stress baking, I didn’t want a huge mess to clean up. I placed my IKEA mixing bowl on top of a scale as I added each ingredient directly into the whole mixture. That’s why all the measurements are in grams (and not cups and millilitres). A lot of recipes tell you to mix the dry ingredients separately first – but I was lazy, and it still turned out great.

Healthy-ish Moist Zucchini Breakfast Bread

This recipe produces a wonderfully moist cinnamon-y loaf of zucchini bread. It reminds me of carrot cake or banana bread, but I’ve reduced the sugar significantly (less than a quarter of what some other recipes call for!). I’ve also used whole wheat flour (higher fibre) and almond milk (lower fat) to create a healthy-ish breakfast which is still extremely tasty. 
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time55 mins
Resting time15 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Breakfast
Keyword: Baking, Bread, Breakfast, Healthy, Zucchini Bread
Servings: 12
Calories: 190kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 large zucchini/courgette
  • 2 eggs
  • 80 g olive oil
  • 70 g almond milk other milks would work too
  • 3 tsp vanilla essence
  • 50 g light brown sugar can use dark brown too
  • 50 g granulated sugar
  • 120 g all purpose flour
  • 120 g whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp cinnamon

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 160c degrees, with fan on. 
  • Coarsely grate the zucchini, set aside.
  • Whisk together the eggs, olive oil, milk, vanilla essence, light brown sugar and granulated sugar.
  • Add in dry ingredients: all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon. Whisk together until it’s just combined.
  • Roughly mix in the grated zucchini.
  • Pour mixture into a loaf pan. I like to line mine with baking paper so that it doesn’t stick to the pan (and to avoid using extra butter or oil to grease it). 
  • Place in lower middle rack of oven at 160c degrees. Bake for 55 minutes, or until a stick comes out clean in the middle. 
  • Leave it to cool inside its pan for 20 mins. Then cool completely on a rack (before digging in!)

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