The present work focuses on the fabrication of environmental friendly ZnO nanocrystals and chitosan/cellulose films hosting ZnO nanoparticles (NPs) as an attempt to produce nanocomposites with enhanced bactericidal capacity. The solution casting method was used to fabricate the chitosan/cellulose blend films. Highly monodisperse ZnO nanoparticles were synthesized using Zinc acetate and Triethylene glycol (TEG) via a modified Polyol route. ZnO crystal size was controlled by the heterogeneous nucleation approach. Optical properties of ZnO nanoparticles were studied by UV–vis spectroscopy and Photoluminescence Spectroscopy (PL) techniques. The nanoparticles’ size and morphology were determined by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD), respectively. Obtained results confirmed the effectiveness of the size-controlled synthesis employed. The chitosan/cellulose/ZnO nanocomposites were characterized by Fourier Transform – Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) methods. The mechanical properties of produced bare and ZnO-bearing composites were determined from stress-strain tests. The Standard Plate Count and the Halo Zone methods were used to evaluate the bactericidal properties of the ZnO nanoparticles, chitosan/cellulose blend films and chitosan/cellulose/ZnO nanocomposites against Escherichia coli (ATCC 35218).