Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Sweet, Summery Snacking: Zucchini Bread is a Teatime Can-Do

This slightly sweet zucchini bread has a delightful velvety texture that lands somewhere between bread and cake.  I promise you, it is so delicious that you won’t even notice it’s a Candida Can-Do: squash my heart and hope to die!

If you like zucchini bread, click here to see our recipe for zucchini muffins!

Imbued with a delicate, earthy deliciousness, this bread makes the perfect teatime snack.  You can toast it up with butter to get a good crunch and savory crust taste, or eat it unaltered or even chilled to really taste the unique natural sweetness of the zucchini. 

If you haven’t baked with squash before, you might be wondering as to why I’m recommending a vegetable bread as a Can-Do substitute for sugar cravings.  In fact, squashes, particularly the winter varieties (butternut squash, acorn squash, and pumpkins, for example), contain a high percentage of fruit sugars.  Though in the culinary sense they are often considered vegetables, botanically speaking they are actually fruits.  And you wouldn’t think twice about snacking on a delicious fruit-filled muffin now would you?

So let’s show this summer squash some love! 

Candida Alert:  Owing to their high levels of fruit sugars, intake of winter squashes should be limited or even eliminated completely on the Candida Diet.  Summer squashes however, a group including not only zucchini, but also yellow squash and pattypan squash, have less sugar, so there’s no need to be stingy. 

This Zucchini bread is easy to whip up and requires minimal investment.  The only time intensive part of the process is baking, as the zucchini has a high water content that will need to cook out.  In this recipe I used highly absorbent Coconut flour to help speed this process. 

Here’s what you will need:

½ cup hazelnut flour
½ cup almond flour
½ cup coconut flour
½ cup flaxseed meal
1 cup grated zucchini
2 eggs
½ cup unsweetened almond milk
¼ cup melted butter
½ tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. chia seeds
1 tsp. liquid stevia
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
½ tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. nutmeg
pinch of clove (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl integrate your three flours and flaxseed meal.  To this, add the rest of your dry ingredients: chia seeds, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. 
I add the chia seeds for a little extra absorption and fiber, but they are not necessary to the integrity of the bread.  In fact, you will hardly notice them in the finished product. 
The clove is a minute amount and purely optional at that.  If you happen to have the spice on hand, I recommend adding a pinch to boost the aromatic properties of the other two spices.  Yet bear in mind that clove can easily overpower other flavors if the application is heavy handed, so tread lightly. 

Once the dry ingredients are combined, use a medium sized bowl to mix your wet.  Beat the two eggs, then stir in your almond milk.  Slowly add your melted butter, pouring it in a thin and steady stream while stirring continuously.  This will prevent any solidification of the butter or premature cooking of the eggs.  Add the remainder of your liquids: vanilla, stevia, and lemon juice.  You can add more stevia according to your taste if you would like this recipe to function more like a dessert, just make sure not to over-sweeten, as the tipping point is not always easy to predict.  Add the cup of shredded zucchini to this mixture of liquids and stir. 

Line an eight-inch loaf pan with a strip of parchment paper.  This will make it easier to lift out the loaf once it has cooked.  Butter the uncovered sides to prevent sticking.    

Add the wet ingredients into the dry and mix to combine.  The coconut flour will begin to absorb moisture almost immediately, so your batter will be thick and sticky. 
Once your batter is mixed, try to get it in the oven as soon as possible.  Allowing the coconut flour to sit and absorb will alter your texture.    

Pour your batter into the loaf pan, and bake for 45 minutes.  After 45 minutes, rotate the pan in the oven to ensure even baking, and bake for another 45 minutes. 

After the last 45 minutes are up, remove your bread from the oven.  It should pass the knife test (that is, if you stick a knife in it the blade should come out clean), and the top should be golden brown and crusted, but springy underneath. 

Let the bread cool for ten minutes before you attempt to turn it out of the pan, and let it cool for at least 45 minutes before you attempt to slice it. 

You can serve this bread freshly baked, or you can store some slices in freezer bags and defrost them as needed. 

I love this recipe, as the zucchini gives the bread a light, nectar-like sweetness that feels perfect for lazy summer afternoons. 

Get yourself a good book and a glass of iced tea and you are ready to snack your way through a heat wave.  Or if your region is experiencing the same Christmas-in-July cold snap as mine, make it a hot mug of Earl Grey and toast yourself a slice for a warm and cozy alterative. 

Happy baking, and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from The Joy of Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Baking by Peter Reinhart and Denene Wallace


  1. AMAZING recipe! can't wait to try it. How long were you on the candida diet?

    1. Hi Erin, glad you like what you see! When you do try it, I recommend toasting the slices after you cut them from the loaf. That will heighten the flavor and make for a really satisfying texture (and if you ask me, a little pat of butter never hurt either).
      It took me a long time to find the candida diet as a solution to my health problems, but I’ve been on it ever since. Following this diet helps me feel and look my best, so I’ve adopted it as a lifestyle, detouring every now and then for special occasions.
      Enjoy the zucchini bread, and check back for more recipes soon!

  2. This looks great! I love baking with zucchini! I am excited to try hazelnut flour, I have never had it! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Can I sub almond flour for the coconut and hazelnut flour? They are hard to find where I live. Thanks

  4. I made this bread hoping it would be fantastic as I am starting a new journey into this Candida discover -- it did not set like it looks in the picture. It still looked like it was raw in the middle, though it looked nice and crusty on the outside - what went wrong??

  5. This is a great recipe and easy to make. I used goat butter as it is better than cows but am goimg to try to substitute it with coconut oil on the next batch.I've been on the candida diet for a week and a half now and this bread just became my lifeline to sanity! Thank you!!!