ZrO2-ZnO composite thin films were grown by reactive DC magnetron sputtering. X-ray diffraction studies reveal the composite nature of the films with separate ZnO and ZrO2 phase. Scanning electron microscopy studies confirm the nanocrystalline structure of the films. The films were studied for their impedometric relative humidity (RH) sensing characteristics. The complex impedance plot was fitted with a standard equivalent circuit consisting of an inter-granular resistance and a capacitance in parallel. The DC resistance was found to be decreasing with increase in RH. © 2016 Author(s).