The annual inflation rate in the 19 countries that use the euro currency jumped to a 10-year high of 3%, according to an estimate from the EU's statistics office Eurostat.
Inflation in the eurozone had already increased in July to 2.2%, after 1.9% in June. It was mostly the result of a rise in fuel prices.
In August, the energy sector recorded the highest annual increase, at 15.4%, far ahead of industrial goods excluding energy (2.7%), food, alcohol and tobacco (2%) and services (1.1%).
Among the larger countries in the eurozone, Germany experienced particularly high inflation as did Spain in the month of August. Italy and France remained below the average.
The 3% rate, the highest in the eurozone since the end of 2011, exceeded the European Central Bank's goal of 2% although the bank considers the inflation to be temporary.
Economists say the high inflation is likely due to the reopening of economies and supply issues that could subside next year.
European Central Bank governors will meet on September 9.