The optical band gap and electronic structure of amorphous Al-Zr mixed oxides, with Zr content ranging from4.8 to 21.9% were determined using vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS). Thelight scattering by the nano-porous structure of alumina at low wavelengths was estimated based on the Miescattering theory. The dependence of the optical band gap of the Al-Zr mixed oxides on Zr content deviatesfrom linearity and decreases from 7.3 eV for pure anodized Al2O3 to 6.45 eV for Al-Zr mixed oxide with Zrcontent of 21.9%. With increasing Zr content, the conduction band minimum changes non-linearly as well.Fitting of the energy band gap values resulted in a bowing parameter of 2 eV. The band gap bowing of themixed oxides is assigned to the presence of the Zr d-electron states localized below the conduction bandminimum of anodized Al2O3.