Paula Deen does it.
Allrecipes.com does it.
Taste of Home, cdkitchen, and food.com all do it.
Even LiveStrong does it.
But sometimes, King Arthur Flour just does it better.
Or at least with more fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
And "it" is...?
Zucchini chocolate chip bread. 100% Whole Wheat Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread, to be exact.
Quick breads – you know, those batters that you just stir together, pour into a pan, and bake – are the ideal place to substitute whole wheat flour for all-purpose.
This is especially true for quick breads made with fruit (or, in this case, zucchini): whole grains need more liquid than all-purpose flour. The liquid in fruit helps soften wheat's bran, making it less likely to produce a crumbly loaf.
Unlike yeast bread, these baking powder breads don't rise mightily; they just casually poke their heads up over the rim of the pan.
A gently curved top is just fine, thank you; no rainbows required.
And that's one big reason whole wheat flour is perfect in these breads. With the bran in whole wheat doing its best to destroy a rising loaf's gluten, it takes some skill to make a 100% whole wheat sandwich loaf rise to towering heights.
It's all about managing expectations, right?
When you bake this bread, expect a moist, pleasantly dense, flavorful loaf, packed with zucchini and chocolate.
You won't be disappointed – we promise.
So long as you're not looking for that famous blimp...
Preheat the oven to 350°F; lightly grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan.
Put the following in a mixing bowl:
2 large eggs
1/3 cup molasses or honey
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Beat until well combined.
Add the following:
Mix until well combined.
Add the following:
2 cups (8 1/2 to 10 1/2 ounces) shredded, unpeeled zucchini (about 1 small/medium zucchini)*
1 cup chocolate chips (or raisins, or dried cranberries, if you don't like the chocolate/zucchini combination)
3/4 cup chopped walnuts, optional
*Zucchini weight varies a lot, depending on how juicy it is and how tight you pack it. Anything between 8 1/2 and 10 1/2 ounces will be fine.
Stir just until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Sprinkle the top with coarse white sparkling sugar, if desired. It's pretty, tasty, and adds lovely crunch to each slice.
Bake the bread for 55 to 60 minutes.
When done, a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center will come out clean, save for perhaps a smear of chocolate.
Remove the bread from the oven, and let it cool for 10 to 15 minutes before turning it out of the pan onto a rack.
Cool completely before slicing; if you slice the bread warm, the chocolate chips smear and look kinda messy.
See the sugar on the crust? Moist, soft bread; crunchy sugar; dark chocolate... and 100% whole wheat. YES!
One final hint: If possible, wait a day to serve this bread. An overnight rest softens the bran further, ensuring crumble-free slices.
Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for 100% Whole Wheat Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread.