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Sour Cream Zucchini Bread

This easy Sour Cream Zucchini Bread is moist, tender, has just the right amount of sweetness and warm spices, and is one of the best ways to use up some of that extra zucchini!

Flavored with cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and vanilla, it’s super simple to make (you don’t even need a mixer). And it’s freezer-friendly and easily customizable too!

So, do you still have lots of zucchini to get through? Me too.

Last week, I rounded up some of my best, easy, other-than-zucchini-bread zucchini recipes for you to try. Be sure to check out that post for some yummy ideas.

And, as promised, today I’ve got my favorite zucchini bread recipe for you…this zucchini bread with sour cream that I’ve been making for years!

I love this recipe for a few reasons, the first being that it’s easy to make. Just mix the batter together by hand, pour it into the pans and bake. The house will smell sooo good while it’s baking!

The sour cream adds some richness and makes the bread even more moist while not thinning out the batter. It also helps give the bread a more tender and a somewhat finer crumb.

And I really love that it’s not overly sweet and that it’s got all those lovely warm spices there tantalizing your taste buds in the background.

Finally, this bread slices beautifully and holds together well (no crumbly bread here).

Enjoy it for breakfast with some coffee or tea, as an anytime snack or even as dessert…with or without a slathering of butter!

2 loaves of sour cream zucchini bread in glass loaf pans

Ingredients You Need

  • Cooking spray
  • White granulated sugar
  • Extra-light tasting olive oil (or vegetable oil)
  • Eggs
  • Zucchini (shredded)
  • Sour cream
  • Vanilla extract
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Ginger (ground)
  • Cloves (ground)

Note: Ingredient amounts are in the recipe card at the end of the post.

How to Make Sour Cream Zucchini Bread

1: Preheat the oven to 325°F.

2: Spray two 8½ x 4½-inch loaf pans with cooking spray. Line the long side of each loaf pan with parchment paper; leave a small amount of overhang that you can use later to easily lift the baked bread out of the pans.

3: In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sugar and oil until well-combined.

3 numbered images; number 1 is a graphic of an oven with text that says 325 degrees Fahrenheit, number 2 is of 2 loaf pans lined with parchment paper and a can of cooking spray in the background, and number 3 is of oil and sugar being mixed together in a bowl

4: Add the eggs, zucchini, sour cream, and vanilla extract to the bowl; mix until well-combined.

5: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves until well-combined.

6: Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients; mix just until combined.

3 numbered images; number 4 is of the zucchini, eggs, sour cream, and vanilla added to the bowl and then mixed together, number 5 is of the flour, baking soda, salt, and spices being whisked together in a bowl, and number 6 is of the dry ingredients added to the bowl with the wet ingredients and then being mixed together

7: Evenly divide the batter among the 2 prepared loaf pans.

8: Bake for 60 to 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean.

9: Cool the loaves in the pan for 10 minutes.

3 numbered images; number 7 is of the batter in the 2 prepared loaf pans, number 8 is a graphic of an oven with text that says 325 degrees Fahrenheit, and number 9 is of the baked loaves in the loaf pans on a wire cooling rack

10: Carefully remove the loaves from the pans, remove the parchment paper, and allow them to cool completely on a wire cooling rack.

11: Slice and enjoy!

2 numbered images; number 10 is of the 2 loaves on a wire cooling rack out of the loaf pans and with the parchment paper removed, and number 11 is of 5 slices of zucchini bread on a white plate with text that says enjoy

Note: This is just a brief overview of the steps. Scroll down to the recipe card at the end of the post for the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts and detailed instructions.

Recipe Tips & Tidbits

  • For best results, select zucchini that are smaller rather than larger. Smaller zucchini are usually juicier and have fewer seeds and more tender skin (so there’s no need to peels them, and you get all those gorgeous green flecks throughout your bread).
    • If you decide to use a zucchini that’s on the larger side, taste it first to make sure it is not bitter (definitely not a flavor you want in your zucchini bread). Then remove the seeds and peel off any tough skin before grating.
  • Grate the zucchini using the larger holes on your box grater, and grate it into a bowl because it will immediately start to release its liquid. You can also use the shredder attachment on a food processor.
    • Don’t drain the liquid; you’ll need to add it to the batter along with the zucchini to keep the bread nice and moist.
  • I use glass (Pyrex) loaf pans that measure 8½ x 4½ inches, but you can use metal loaf pans instead.
    • If you only have 9×5-inch loaf pans, you can use them. The bread will likely be done quicker, so you may need to reduce the baking time. The loaves will be shorter as well.
  • The parchment paper makes it easier to lift the baked bread out of the pans (as well as being some extra insurance against sticking). If you don’t have any, that’s okay. Just spray the loaf pans with cooking spray and proceed with the recipe.
  • After adding the dry ingredients, mix the batter just until combined and there are no dry spots of flour. Be careful not to overmix the batter, as this can cause your bread to be tough.
  • Start checking the bread for doneness at the 60-minute mark. Although the bread usually takes 75 minutes in my oven, all ovens are different, and you don’t want to overbake the bread as this can make it dry.
  • Cool the bread completely before slicing (slicing it too soon could cause the bread to have a gummy, undercooked texture).
4 slices of sour cream zucchini bread on a white plate with a cut loaf of the bread and a knife on a cutting board in the background

Substitutions & Variations

  • Customize your zucchini bread with mix-ins. Here are some ideas:
    • Chopped nuts, such as walnuts or pecans
    • Dried fruit, such as raisins, currants or cranberries
    • Chocolate chips
    • Shredded coconut
  • For a more dessert-y bread, add a glaze.
    • Mix 1 cup of powdered sugar with 2 to 3 tablespoons of milk and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract in a small bowl (start with 2 tablespoons and add more if needed to reach your desired consistency). Pour over the cooled bread and allow to set before slicing.
  • Try using yellow summer squash instead of zucchini!

Storage & Freezing

Storage

Once cooled, wrap your zucchini bread tightly in plastic wrap or in a plastic storage bag and store at room temperature for 2 to 3 days or up to a week in the refrigerator. Freeze for longer-term storage.

Freezing

This zucchini bread freezes very well! You can freeze it either as a whole loaf or in slices. Slices are great because you can just take out a piece or two as you need it.

Once cooled, wrap the whole loaf or each individual slice with plastic wrap and then with aluminum foil. Place in a freezer bag and freeze for up to 2 to 3 months. Thaw either in the refrigerator or at room temperature (keep it wrapped while thawing), and enjoy!

5 pieces of sour cream zucchini bread on a white plate, 4 of them stacked in a pile, with additional slices of bread in the background

This recipe makes 2 loaves of zucchini bread, so you can enjoy one now and either freeze one for later or give one away. They’re perfect for sharing!

I hope you try this Sour Cream Zucchini Bread recipe and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

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More Quick Bread Recipes to Try

More Zucchini Recipes to Try

If you make this recipe, I’d love to know how it went! Please leave a star rating and comment below. Thanks!

4 pieces of sour cream zucchini bread on a white plate

Sour Cream Zucchini Bread

This easy Sour Cream Zucchini Bread is moist, tender, has just the right amount of sweetness and warm spices, and is one of the best ways to use up some of that extra zucchini!
5 from 1 vote
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Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Cooling Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 2 loaves (about 12 slices each)
Estimated Calories: 217

Ingredients

  • cooking spray
  • 2 cups white granulated sugar
  • 1 cup extra-light tasting olive oil, or vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini, leave skin on, grate into a bowl, and don't drain the liquid
  • ½ cup sour cream, I use full-fat
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  • Spray the bottom and sides of two 8½ x 4½-inch loaf pans with cooking spray (I use glass/Pyrex pans; you can use metal instead). Line the long side of each loaf pan with parchment paper; leave a small amount of overhang that you can use later to easily lift the baked bread out of the pans (see the step-by-step photos in the post if needed).
    If you don't have parchment paper, that's okay. Just spray the loaf pans and proceed with the recipe.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar and oil until well-combined.
  • Add the eggs, zucchini, sour cream, and vanilla extract to the bowl; mix until well-combined.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves until well-combined.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients; mix just until combined and there are no spots of dry flour remaining.
    Be careful not to overmix the batter, as this can cause your bread to be tough.
  • Evenly divide the batter among the prepared loaf pans.
  • Bake on the center rack in the oven for 60 to 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of both loaves comes out clean.
    In my oven, it takes 75 minutes. But since all ovens are different, start checking at 60 minutes. Be careful not to overbake the bread, which can make it dry.
  • Remove the pans from the oven to a wire cooling rack; allow the loaves to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  • Carefully remove the loaves from the pans (if you used parchment paper, you should be able to easily lift them right out), remove the parchment paper, and place the loaves on the wire cooling rack; allow to cool completely (this will take about 1½ hours).
  • Slice and enjoy!
    Be sure to cool the bread completely before slicing (slicing it too soon could cause the bread to have a gummy, undercooked texture).

Notes

  • For best results, select smaller zucchini; they are usually juicier and have fewer seeds and more tender skin. As a reference, I used one medium zucchini that weighed just under 1 pound to get 2 cups of shredded zucchini.
    • If you want to use a large zucchini, taste it first to make sure it is not bitter. Then remove the seeds and peel off any tough skin before grating.
  • Grate the zucchini using the larger holes on a box grater, and grate it into a bowl because it will immediately start to release its liquid. But don’t drain that liquid; you need to add it to the batter to keep the bread moist.
  • When measuring the zucchini, I do not pack it down in the measuring cup.
  • If all you have are 9×5-inch loaf pans, you can use them. The bread will likely be done quicker, so you may need to reduce the baking time. The loaves will be shorter as well.
  • Store your zucchini bread at room temperature wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or in a plastic storage bag for 2 to 3 days or up to a week in the refrigerator. Freeze for longer-term storage.
  • Estimated calories shown are for 1 slice (based on 12 slices per loaf).
Did you try this recipe? I’d love to see it!Share it on Instagram, tag @nowcookthis and use the hashtag #nowcookthisrecipes. Thanks!
Recipe Rating




Monika

Friday 11th of August 2023

How many zucchinis is 2 cups?

Michelle

Friday 11th of August 2023

Hi, Monika! That will really depend on the size of the zucchini. For reference, I used one zucchini that was just about 1 pound to get 2 cups. I would consider that a medium-sized zucchini. If smaller, you may need to use 2. Hope that helps!