We investigate the dynamics of quantum entanglement after a global quench and uncover a qualitative difference between the behavior of the von Neumann entropy and higher Rényi entropies. We argue that the latter generically grow sub-ballistically, as ∝√t, in systems with diffusive transport. We provide strong evidence for this in both a U(1) symmetric random circuit model and in a paradigmatic nonintegrable spin chain, where energy is the sole conserved quantity. We interpret our results as a consequence of local quantum fluctuations in conserved densities, whose behavior is controlled by diffusion, and use the random circuit model to derive an effective description. We also discuss the late-time behavior of the second Rényi entropy and show that it exhibits hydrodynamic tails with three distinct power laws occurring for different classes of initial states.