There’s a little cafe in the Mussoorie, India, nestled in the foothills of the himalayas where they sell fantastic Zucchini bread.  We lived there a few months 4 years ago, studying the Hindi language.  I loved to sit in the cafe, write my Hindi journal, drink my chai and eat a slice of their divine zucchini bread.

Fast-forward 4 years and I live in a crazy mega-city, don’t have any idea where I could buy zucchini bread and don’t eat sugar and gluten anyway . . . so I head to the kitchen and come up with my first husband-approved sugar free baked good!  Victory!

My first 6 months gluten-free, I’ve only used sugar-substitutes that were fruit, such as bananas, no sugar added apple juice and date sugar (ground up dried dates.)  More on sugar substitutes soon, but for now, I’ll just say that I branched out and used Stevia powder in this recipe for a few reasons.

  1. I knew it would make it sweeter and therefore more husband friendly.
  2. I’ve had it sitting in my cabinet waiting its turn for use.
  3. Most importantly, I was thinking I’d need around 2 cups of sugar substitute and only had 2/3 cup of date sugar on hand :).

Here’s exactly what I did and it was super-yummy. (Soon, I’ll post about how to switch out sugar and other substitutions when you don’t have something specific on hand.)


  • 3/4 cup golden raisins (optional, but I love them!)
  • 1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas (one large or two small)
  • 1 tsp stevia powder
  • 2/3 cup date sugar
  • 1 cup oil (wanted to use 1/2 cup applesauce and 1/2 cup oil but I was out of applesauce and apples!  I recommend it)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups gluten-free flour mix* (or plain flour)
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped nuts (optional. I used pecans)
*I used Orgran gluten-free all-purpose plain flour for this recipe.
  • Preheat oven to 325*.
  • Grease 2 loaf pans.
  • Place raisins in a bowl of warm water to “plump.”
  • Beat eggs until frothy
  • Mix oil, bananas, stevia and date sugar into the eggs.
  • Stir in grated zucchini and vanilla.
  • Combine the rest of the ingredients in a separate bowl.
  • Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and stir until everything is wet.
  • Drain your raisins, dry them with a towel and stir them into the batter.
  • Divide the batter between your two pans and spread the top evenly. (It will be a little thick.)
  • Bake for 60-70 minutes.
  • Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then place on a cooling rack.  I usually can’t wait to eat something I’ve baked and this is the first time I must say it was better when it wasn’t really hot.  Let it cool almost completely or it will fall apart!
  • I store mine in the fridge because gluten free baked goods spoil easily.
Enjoy!  And if you ever visit Mussoorie, be sure to stop at Chhaya Cafe on the way up the hill to Landour.  It’s a great place to look over the city and enjoy a fantastic baked good.

About ohappydaisy (Leslie)

I love happy things. That includes my silly husband, giggly daughter, polka-dots and daisies. We used to live in India, a land far away from the familiar, but we're back in the states. I cook a low-processed, gluten-free, sugar-free menu. I've struggled with my health since childhood. I learn a lot as I journey through my life and hope that readers with parallel paths will be encouraged and inspired towards happiness.

5 responses »

  1. Georgia says:

    How long have you been sugar free and do you feel better? My dad swears by it… It’s a hard sell for me but if it would make me feel better I would go for it.

    • Hey Georgia! I’ve been strictly sugar and gluten free for 6 months straight now. But I’ve done the sugar-free thing many times throughout my life–starting at age 12 as directed by a doctor. Every few years since then, I’d take 3-6 months to do it, just until I felt AWESOME, then went back to my regular diet and did okay until little by little my body deteriorated again. I guess it only took me 20 years of that cycle to realize that this needs to be a more permanent deal for me. Since I’ve committed to the change for good, I’ve done more baking and experimenting so I don’t feel like I’m depriving myself anymore.

      YES, I KNOW it sounds miserable. It was a hard sell for me–I was a sugar addict. Oh, and I love yeast and I’ve had to drop that out of my diet as well. But I guarantee you it makes a very significant difference. There’s no way I’d be doing it if it didn’t. It was a true challenge in the beginning. But now, I honestly can easily pass up sugary stuff because I see it and know that while it will make me happy for 5 minutes (maybe 30 if you count the sugar high) it will make my body/mind feel miserable later. And it’s just not worth it.

      Do I think everyone needs to be sugar-free? No. I think most people could handle a decrease in their sugar intake, for sure. But I believe it mostly helps those who are either consistently plagued with illness or are currently struggling to regain health from a specific incident. I will mention to you, specifically: if you choose a drastic diet change while nursing your sweet Claire, do it gradually and balanced. Meaning, if you drop a bunch of sugar, make sure you’re picking up calories elsewhere to keep your milk production even. I tried dropping all sugar 2 months after Lucy was born and it played havoc with my milk. I decreased the sugar, added in more butter (yummmm!) and eventually went totally sugar-free (while still nursing.)

  2. Georgia says:

    Thanks for commenting. I’m trying to figure everything out. We’re having allergy bmilk problems. 😦 My brother, sister and I were highly allergic babies too. I was hoping she would have Jacob’s gut!

Happily Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s