Lemon Rosemary Zucchini Bread

BakingVegetarianQuick BreadZucchini

Lovely, moist zucchini bread with fresh rosemary and lemon zest.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

I’m on a mission this summer. A mission out of necessity, resulting from the abundance of certain summer squash I planted in my parents’ garden. Four plants. What was I thinking?! One zucchini plant alone could feed a family of four.

Every time I stop by my parents’ house my mother glares at me accusingly. Actually, she’s not the glaring type. It’s more like a bemused look that says, “we have a problem, and it’s your fault,” along with an offer to cook me up some squash (she has an excellent recipe) and a plea to give some to me to take home.

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So the mission? Come up with recipes that we all like and that use a lot of summer squash. For this I have been experimenting with zucchini bread for the last two weeks. We have a couple fine zucchini bread recipes on the site, but I was hoping for something a little more savory.

I tried all sorts of combinations, experiments with cheddar, with Parm, jalapenos, etc. Mom’s response to most of them, “good if you toast them and then put sugar and butter on them.” Not good enough.

Finally I succumbed to the classic somewhat sweet zucchini bread, but seasoned it with rosemary and lemon, so you get a savory note. More than good enough. Really good. My conclusion is that zucchini bread works well with sugar. Here we use 1 1/4 cups for 3 cups of zucchini and 3 cups of flour. So, it’s not a lot, but it’s enough to make a lovely, lightly sweet bread.

Lemon Rosemary Zucchini Bread Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 2 loaves


  • 3 cups (390 grams) flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt (omit if using salted butter)
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lemon zest
  • 3 cups grated zucchini (from about 1 pound of zucchini)


1 Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare two 4x9-inch loaf pans, either coating with butter or spraying with baking spray.

2 In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and rosemary.

3 Beat the eggs in a mixer (or by hand) until frothy. Beat in the sugar. Beat in the melted butter and olive oil. Stir in the lemon zest and grated zucchini.

4 Add the dry ingredients to the wet, a third at a time, stirring after each incorporation.

5 Divide batter/dough into two loaf pans. Bake in a 350°F oven for 45 to 50 minutes. Test after 40 minutes. If you gently press down on the surface of the loaf, it should bounce back, and a bamboo skewer inserted into the center should come out clean.

6 Remove from the oven. Let cool for a few minutes and then remove the loaves from their pans to cool on a rack.

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Lemon Rosemary Zucchini Bread

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

89 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Jess

    It was okay. I really wanted to like it, but didn’t taste the lemon and i added extra. Definitely needed more salt. I cooked the bread for 45 min and the bread came out clean on the chopstick, but it was stodgy. Maybe the zucchini was too wet. When I make fritters, I press out the liquid from the zucchini with paper towels. I will try again.


  2. Jan

    This bread is my favorite use of zucchini. My only problem is zucchini and lemon don’t have the same season. What would you think of using lemon verbena or lemon balm as a replacement?


    Show Replies (1)
  3. Patricia

    This is my new favorite zucchini bread and it was very easy to make.

  4. MaryBeth

    I love this bread. Just wondering if you could replace some of the butter with applesauce to reduce calories. Has anyone tried?

    Show Replies (1)
  5. Emily

    So yummy!! Great flavors and super moist. I will definitely bake this again.


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