In this study, ZrO2/nanographene platelets (NGP) and ZrO2/graphene composites were fabricated by depositing ZrO2 nanoparticles onto nanographene platelets and graphene surfaces to develop photocatalysts. ZrO2/NGP and ZrO2/graphene were successfully synthesized using the co-precipitation method. The physicochemical characteristics were studied through X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscope, energy dispersive X-ray analysis, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller method and infrared absorption. The X-ray diffraction results revealed that the ZrO2 nanoparticles have a typical tetragonal structure and the average crystallite size was found to be approximately 13 nm by using the Debye-Scherrer's equation. The results are also confirmed by TEM measurements. The photocatalytic activity of ZrO2/NGP and ZrO2/graphene composites was evaluated by degrading methylene blue under UV light irradiation which confirmed that ZrO2/graphene composites have better catalytic performance than ZrO2/NGP composites and pure ZrO2 nanoparticles. An effort has been made to correlate the physicochemical characteristic of ZrO2/NGP and ZrO2/graphene composites to the rate of photocatalytic degradation of methylene blue. The results demonstrated that graphene incorporation in ZrO2 nanoparticles could greatly improve the photocatalytic activity. In addition, the influence of catalyst dosage, initial concentration, and scavengers of reactive species on the photocatalytic activity was investigated. Moreover, the composites were found to be reusable photocatalyst.