Gluten Free Zucchini Yeast Bread

Gluten Free Zucchini Yeast Bread

Gluten free zucchini yeast bread is made for sandwiches, and is savory without any added cheese. A true summer gem!

A loaf pf zucchini yeast bread on wooden surface

It’s the dog days of summer. You have zucchini, I have answers. Baking with zucchini can be tricky, because it is just.so.wet. And what’s more, shredded zucchini actually gets more wet as it sits, since it releases its moisture.

Put a pin in that, and let’s talk about how the very worst thing you can do to any yeast bread, gluten free or not, is make it too dry. Period. End of sentence. If it’s too dry, it won’t rise.

That’s why, in my new bread recipes, we use the scrape and fold kneading method to shape the yeast breads from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread (and the new gluten free bread recipes that have followed from it) without incorporating too much flour into the dough and mistakenly drying it out. See where I’m going with all of this?

2 zucchinis on a wooden surface

Shredded zucchini is perfect for making soft gluten free sandwich bread! I give you Gluten Free Zucchini Yeast Bread. Since I’m simply desperate to make good use of the daily zucchini that the monster zucchini plants in my husband’s backyard garden, this all just makes good sense to me.

And not only does the zucchini add moisture, it adds a certain depth of flavor without actually making the bread taste, well, like zucchini. It’s the wonder vegetable!

Zucchini bread dough in metal loaf pan

Even though this recipe is adapted from Ricotta Bread, one of my favorite sandwich bread recipes from GFOAS Bakes Bread page 70, I still had to make it 4 times before I was fully satisfied with it. I cut back pretty dramatically on the water, and I can’t stress enough that you should consider measuring your water by weight, instead of by volume (see Bread FAQ #21 for instructions). The right moisture balance makes alllll the difference.

A close up of inside zucchini bread loaf on wooden surface

Here’s the best news, though: even if you overmeasure the water, the dough may be really tough to handle (like, really hard), but if you don’t care how it’s shaped, it will still bake up just fine. My early attempts at this recipe weren’t quite as pretty, but they still tasted just fine. :)

Like this recipe?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 1 loaf gluten free bread


3 1/2 cups (490 g) Gluten Free Bread Flour*, plus more for sprinkling

2 teaspoons (6 g) instant yeast

2 tablespoons (24 g) sugar

2 teaspoons (12 g) kosher salt

7 ounces shredded fresh zucchini (from about 1 medium zucchini)

6 ounces/6 fluid ounces warm water (about 95°F)

4 tablespoons (56 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature


  1. 1 cup (140 g) Gluten Free Bread Flour, as discussed more fully on pages 8 to 10 of GFOAS Bakes Bread, contains 100 grams Mock Better Batter all purpose gluten free flour (or Better Batter itself) + 25 grams whey protein isolate (I use NOW Foods brand) + 15 grams Expandex modified tapioca starch.
  2. For a calculator that helps you build the flour using my Mock Better Batter, but without doing any math, please see my Gluten Free Flour page.
  3. If you would like to use Ultratex 3 in place of Expandex, please see #6 on my Resources page for instructions.


  • In the bowl of your stand mixer, place the flour, yeast and sugar, and use a handheld whisk to combine well. Add the salt and whisk to combine well. Add the shredded zucchini, and mix to coat the zucchini in the dry ingredients. Add the water and butter, and mix on low speed with the dough hook until combined. Raise the mixer speed to medium and knead for about 5 minutes. The dough should be relatively smooth, but the zucchini will make it stickier. Spray a silicone spatula lightly with cooking oil spray, and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl or proofing bucket large enough for the dough to rise to double its size, spray the top of the dough with cooking oil spray, and cover with an oiled piece of plastic wrap (or the oiled top to your proofing bucket). Place the dough in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours and up to 3 days.**

    **Note: If you prefer, you may make and use this dough on the same day. It will not be as easy to handle, and will not rise as smoothly, however. To use the dough the same day it is made, after making the dough, set the covered dough to rise in a warm, draft-free environment to allow it to rise to double its size (about 1 hour). Once it has doubled, place it in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes or until it is chilled. This will make it much easier to handle. Then, continue with the rest of the recipe instructions.

  • Preparing the dough for shaping. On baking day, grease a standard loaf pan (approximately 9-inches x 5-inches—mine are 8 1/2-inches x 4 1/2-inches) and set it aside. Turn out the chilled dough onto a lightly floured surface and, using the scrape and fold kneading method and using a very light touch, sprinkle the dough with more flour and knead it lightly, sprinkling with flour when necessary to prevent it from sticking, scrape the dough off the floured surface with a floured bench scraper, then fold it over on itself. Repeat scraping and folding until the dough has become smoother. Do not overwork the dough or you will incorporate too much flour and it will not rise properly. This dough is a bit difficult to handle, as the zucchini continue to release its moisture during the first rise.

  • Shaping the dough. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface, and pat the dough into a rectangle about 7 inches long x 5-inches wide. Fold both 7-inch sides of the dough about 2 inches in toward the center, and then roll up the dough from one 5-inch side toward the other until the dough is completed coiled. Roll the dough gently back and forth on the lightly floured surface, to seal the edges. Tuck the short ends slightly under the loaf, if necessary to fit the loaf in the loaf pan. Lift the shaped loaf carefully into the loaf pan, seam side down. Cover the loaf pan with an oiled piece of plastic wrap, and place in a warm, draft-free location until the dough has risen to nearly 1-inch above the lip of the pan (about 1 1/2 hours, but rising time can vary greatly depending upon your kitchen environment).

  • About 20 minutes before your dough has finished its final rise, preheat your oven to 350°F. Once the dough has finished rising, remove the plastic wrap and place the pan in the center of the preheated oven. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until the bread reaches an internal temperature of 185°F on an instant-read thermometer. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes in the pan before turning it out onto a wire rack to finish cooling until no longer hot to the touch. Serve immediately.

  • Adapted from the recipe for Ricotta Bread on page 70 of Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread.



P.S. Still don’t have a copy of Gluten Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread? What are you waiting for? ;)

Comments are closed.

  • JClement
    July 20, 2014 at 9:48 PM

    Can this be made in a bread maker w a GF setting?

  • Angela
    July 20, 2014 at 3:32 PM

    I am wondering how well this keeps, can it be sliced and frozen? I want to make it but eating a whole loaf right away is an impossibility. I bet it will be wonderful for sandwiches.

    • July 21, 2014 at 2:16 PM

      Definitely, Angela. If we don’t eat it all in one day, I always slice it all and freeze it that way.

  • Noella
    July 19, 2014 at 10:14 PM

    Do you think shredded frozen zucchini would work? And what would you suggest for substituting out potatoe flour/starch for in your flour mixes?

    • July 21, 2014 at 2:17 PM

      I’ve never even seen shredded frozen zucchini, Noella, so I honestly don’t know. And I’m afraid I don’t know of a substitute for potato flour!

  • anna
    July 18, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    I made your savory cheesy zucchini bread last week in muffin form and they were amazing! This sounds just as delicious but more versatile so i will definitely need to try it out.

    • July 21, 2014 at 2:17 PM

      Sounds good, Anna!

  • Jennifer S.
    July 18, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    Oh snap! love me some ricotta and zucchini. AND I have no idea what is up with MN but I always have to add more water to the bread recipes but when I do, pure heaven. My last two loaves of ricotta were 100% fabulous!
    Quick Question: I’m having issues with blow outs on the side of my bread even though I’m putting a slit down the middle? Any ideas on what I’m doing wrong? maybe my slit is not deep enough?

    • July 21, 2014 at 2:18 PM

      It sounds like maybe your slash is not deep enough and/or not at the proper 45° angle, Jennifer. That, and it does sound like you are adding too much extra water, which can easily cause bread to overproof.

      • Jennifer S.
        July 23, 2014 at 10:44 AM

        Yeah – I think I’m not doing it right because the loaf that I added the most water too (I’m still playing around with the amounts), didn’t blow out as much as the one with less water. They both are wonderfully delicious either way!! :)

  • Lucy
    July 18, 2014 at 10:25 AM

    Wonderful timing Nicole! I have lots of zucchini in the garden!

  • Michelle
    July 18, 2014 at 9:38 AM

    I love the ricotta bread recipe, so I will try this for sure! Thanks!

    • July 21, 2014 at 2:19 PM

      Oh I know you’ll love this bread, Michelle. :)

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