Abstract Steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy techniques were used to study the interaction of the flavonoid rutin with human serum albumin (HSA) as well as spectral properties of the protein-bound flavonoid. Both quenching of the intrinsic fluorescence of the protein (Trp214) and the ligand fluorescence, appearing upon complexation with HSA, were used to determine binding parameters. The binding constant determined from the quenching of the Trp214 fluorescence by rutin is equal to 6.87 ± 0.22 × 10 4 M −1 and that obtained from the fluorescence of HSA-bound rutin is 3.8 ± 0.4 × 10 4 M −1. Based on the Job plot analysis, the 1:1 binding stoichiometry for the HSA-rutin complex was determined. The efficient quenching of the Trp214 fluorescence by rutin, fluorescence resonance energy transfer from excited Trp214 to rutin, and competitive binding of warfarin indicate that the binding site for the flavonoid is situated within subdomain IIA of HSA. The presence of the sugar moiety in the flavonoid molecule reduces affinity of rutin for binding to HSA but does not affect the binding stoichiometry and location of the binding site compared with aglycone analogues.