Well, I guess it’s about time to share my all-time favorite 100% Whole Wheat Bread Recipe. (I can’t believe I haven’t shared this before now!) But with the chilly winter weather, now is the perfect time to enjoy some hearty homemade bread with a delicious bowl of soup.
This bread is wonderfully light and fluffy (especially considering it only uses whole wheat flour) and tastes amazing. One of the tricks to getting a good whole wheat bread is to use freshly ground wheat. I also use white wheat to get it just that much lighter and fluffier. 🙂
I make mine in a KitchenAid, so these directions are adjusted to that. But I’m sure it wouldn’t be hard to figure it out for making it by hand or in a Bosch (or any mixer you’ve got).
100% Whole Wheat Bread
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- 2 ¾ cups hot water
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar (or molasses)
- 1 Tbsp sea salt (or regular salt will work)
- 3 Tbsp vital wheat gluten
- 2 Tbsp dough enhancer (optional, but I definitely recommend it)
- 6 – 7½ cups of whole wheat flour
- 2 Tbsp active dry yeast
- Place the first five ingredients (hot water, oil, honey, sugar, and salt) in the mixing bowl and give it a quick mix with a whisk.
- Add 2 cups of the whole wheat flour and give it another stir with the whisk (this cools the water enough to end up with a warm dough). Then add the yeast.
- With the mixer now fitted with the dough hook, add 4 more cups of the whole wheat flour, the vital wheat gluten, and the dough enhancer. Mix until the consistency is fairly even.
- Now continue to slowly add flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough starts balling up around the dough hook (it will probably be pulling away from the sides of the bowl as well). It should be tacky to the touch. The trick is to have enough consistency to stand up with the least amount of flour so the bread will be fluffy. It will most likely be around 6½ cups, but in any case do not exceed 7½ cups of wheat flour. (You can trade one cup of wheat flour for one cup of AP flour if you wish). Don’t overmix the dough or it will be tough.
- When your dough is finished, leave it in the mixer, cover the bowl with your favorite kitchen towel :), and let it rise for about 30-45 minutes. (The dough will be larger but doesn’t need to double.)
- Lightly grease two bread pans.
- Mix the dough again just enough to knock it down close to the original size.
- Spray a work surface with non-stick spray (I do this instead of flouring it). Turn the dough out of the bowl onto your greased surface. Spray your hands with the non-stick spray as well and start shaping it into a nice ball. Divide the ball in half using a sharp knife (sprayed with non-stick spray as well) and shape each half into a nice oblong ball again with all sides tucked under to make a nice smooth top.
- Drop the shaped loaves into your bread pans and let them rise until almost doubled. Bake in a 350º F preheated oven for 36 minutes (increase the time to 41 minutes if you forgot to preheat).
- Remove the bread from the oven and turn it out of the pan onto a rack to cool and cover with your bread towel. Don’t wrap the bread in a bag until completely cooled. Store bread at room temperature for up to 1-2 weeks (if it can manage to last that long!) 🙂 Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from 100% Whole Wheat Grain Bread.