A Simple (Yet Ingenious) Trick for the Best-Ever Zucchini Bread

published Jul 4, 2019
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The best part of zucchini bread (or any quick bread, for that matter) is, arguably, the crunchy golden crust on top. If I cared less about being a thoughtful roommate, I’d go to town on that top shell, peeling it away from the tender loaf underneath and gobbling it up all by myself. I’m salivating just thinking about it.

Needless to say, the other three sides of the bread have never really done it for me. As the loaf cools, they often get soft, losing any crisp texture they gained in the oven and becoming indistinguishable from the bread’s soft interior. But recently, I came across a tip that has totally changed how I make (and eat) zucchini bread.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Cool Quick Breads on Their Side for Tender Loaves with Crisp Sides

I actually stumbled across this tip in Kitchn’s zucchini bread recipe. (It was right in front of me all along!) After the zucchini bread comes out of the oven, Emma suggests removing it from the pan and cooling it on its side on a wire cooling rack, which helps keep the sides crisp. It makes sense: The bottom of the bread is the hottest part, so exposing it to more air prevents it from becoming moist or soggy. She says it’s especially great if you plan on freezing the extra loaf (the recipe makes two), because a crisped-crust bread will hold up better in the freezer than a soggy-bottomed one.

Kitchn’s Associate Food Editor Meghan also told me that some bakers use this trick to keep a loaf’s dome from falling. Yeasted breads such as brioche often emerge from the oven with a fluffy, impressive domed top, but too often the dome collapses as the bread cools. Cooling the bread on its side on a cooling rack gives the bread’s structure an opportunity to stabilize, making it less likely to fall.

Oh, and while you’re at it — leave your loaf of bread on its side to slice it, which will also help prevent you from smushing the dome.

We want to know: What’s your trick for the best-ever zucchini bread? Tell us in the comments!