My 100% Whole Wheat Bread Recipe

I’ve had friends ask for the healthy bread recipe we use daily in our house. I’ve adapted it from multiple recipes online, plus added my own experiences. Feel free to ask me questions if you need help.

This is a light 100% whole wheat bread. The main secret is to use hard WHITE wheat if you have access to bulk wheat and a grinder. (Country Life Natural Foods (www.clnf.org) is a good source for bulk wheat in the Midwest.) The hard RED wheat will make a much heavier, denser loaf and is the reason most bread makers mix their flour 50/50 whole wheat/white flour. Another secret is the extra risings, though you can skip one if you’re in a hurry.

This is a 6 loaf recipe – reduce accordingly:

To start…

  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons yeast
  • 8 – 9 cups warm water (depending on what your mixer holds)
  • 4 cups whole wheat flour

Mix these ingredients together and let sit until double. (Usually 20 minutes.) This step is called a sponge and is very important to allow the yeast to get a head start.

Add…

  • 1 cup butter or vegetable oil or replace with flax meal like I do (see below)
  • 2/3 cup honey or molasses (use blackstrap molasses for extra iron, you won’t taste it)
  • 1 ½ T salt
  • 1 cup vital wheat gluten flour
  • 12 – 15 cups whole wheat flour. Add flour until the dough is still slightly tacky, halfway between mushy and a hard/tough feel. It’s better to put less flour than too much as the dough will firm up after rising and if you add flax meal later.
  • (Optional) up to 1 cup of flax meal. Don’t add this until after last rise and just before shaping.

Final steps:

  1. Mix this together and knead for 10 minutes if kneading by hand or 5 minutes in a bread mixer.
  2. Cover and let rise again until double. (About 15-20 minutes)
  3. Then, mix in flax meal here (if using) and any other add-ins like raisins, nuts, herbs, etc. and mix it in.
  4. Cut dough into 6 pieces. Smash/punch each piece until all bubbles are out and then shape and put into greased (I use Pam) pans.
  5. Cover and let rise again until double. (50 – 60 minutes).
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
  7. Try not to eat it all while it’s hot! 🙂
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