How to Make Whole Wheat Bread Tutorial

 

Homemade Bread

This is my favorite, simple 100% Whole Wheat Bread recipe.  This recipe makes two loaves.   (I always double it for my family, so if the pictures in this tutorial look like twice the amount, that’s because it is.)

Honey Whole Wheat Bread

6 cups (give or take) whole wheat flour, divided
1 ¾ cups warm water, divided
1/3 cup honey
1 package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 Tablespoons melted butter

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Mix 3 cups of whole wheat flour with 1 ½ cups of warm water in a large glass bowl.  Allow this to sit for about 30 minutes.  This will break down the gluten and help the bread to rise better.

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In a small bowl mix together ¼ cup water, 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast and 1/3 cup honey.  Allow this to sit for about 10 minutes, or until the yeast is activated and mixture becomes bubbly.

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In the meantime, melt 3 Tablespoons butter in a small sauce pan.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.  You don’t want the hot butter to kill the yeast.

Add 1 teaspoon salt, melted butter and yeast mixture to the flour and water mixture.  Gradually add the remaining three cups of flour and stir well.  As the dough becomes harder to stir, pour it out onto a clean counter and begin to knead the dough.  If you create a nice dough before adding all three cups of flour…you don’t need to continue to add it in.  Just add enough to make a nice, non-sticky dough.

Here’s a video to show you how to knead the dough.  Two things:  1) I was having a freaked out hair day.  So glad I could share it with you.  2) I’m pretty sure “wetter” is not a real word, yet I use that word toward the end of the video.   I are sorry.

Don’t you love how I “spank” the dough at the end of the clip?  There’s something very gratifying about giving the dough a nice “spank”.  You should try it sometime.

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Once you’ve kneaded your dough, place it into a bowl to rise.

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Cover the dough with a cloth and let it rise for at least one hour or until it has risen to twice  it’s starting size.

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While you’re waiting for your dough to rise, get your bread pans buttered.  You can also do some laundry, wash some dishes, or clean the bread dough out from under your fingernails.

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There it is…doubled up.

 

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Give the raised dough a nice punch.
(Punching?  Spanking?  Who knew making bread was so violent in nature?)

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Using a floured hand, pull the dough out of the bowl onto the counter.

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Knead for three or four minutes until the air bubbles are all gone.

Now you can watch how I shape my dough into loaves before baking.  Again…more spanking…

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Cover and allow 30 minutes to one hour to rise again.  They should double in size, but the rising should happen more quickly this time because the yeast knows what to do by now.

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See here how the loaves have doubled in size?

Bake the bread uncovered in a 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the bread sounds hollow when you thump the top of it.  (Great.  Spanking, punching and thumping.  I am really a bad influence.)

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Allow the bread to cool in the pans for 10 minutes,
then remove it to finish cooling on a wire rack.

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The bread slices more easily after it’s cooled.  However…it’s awfully hard to wait…and bread fresh out of the oven slathered in butter is really, really good.  I say go for it.

A few notes:

  • Making bread from start to finish takes about 3 1/2 to 4 hours.  Most of that time is waiting and baking time…but if you plan to make bread, you should block out an entire morning or afternoon.
  • If your water or butter is too cold or too hot, it will kill the yeast.  If you can put your (clean) finger in the water or butter and it doesn’t burn you, but just feels warm… you’ve got the right temperature.
  • If the dough in your bowl has risen to double and suddenly you need to nurse the baby or wash cottage cheese out from between your toddler’s toes…just go punch down your dough and let it rise again before you shape it.  It won’t hurt anything.
  • If you want to shape your dough into loaves, but bake them later:  Shape your loaves then put them directly into the freezer before they have a chance to rise.  Allow them to sit in buttered loaf pans for several hours (or overnight) so that they can thaw and rise before baking.
  • Many of you have asked if I have a bread machine.  I don’t, so I’m sorry I am not able to answer your questions about them.  I’m assuming this recipe would work in a machine, but I don’t know.  Maybe some of you with bread machines can chime in on this?

Click here to read through posts describing and explaining grains, grain mills and grinding flour!
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Comments

  1. Rebecca C says

    Laura,
    I made this today and it turned out fantabulous!!! Thank you so much for this recipe. But…my kids said it was a little too sweet for their tastes. So, if I omit or reduce the honey, would that change anything? Would I need to add more butter or water?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Don’t omit the honey, or the yeast won’t be activated. But you can certainly cut the amount in half and be just fine!

    [Reply]

  2. Julie says

    kinda dumb question but how to you store your bread? or any other baked things you have (cookies, pop-tarts, etc.) Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Once it’s completely cooled, I put it into a ziplock bag and store it in the fridge.

    [Reply]

  3. Jennifer says

    I make a bread VERY similar to this in my bread machine. My recipe (like all commercial recipes) calls for half whole wheat flour and half white flour. This should work fine for anyone with a machine.

    Laura, is there a health reason I should not use a bread machine, or do you just prefer to do it by hand?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I don’t know of anything unhealthy about using a bread machine, I just prefer making it by hand!

    [Reply]

    Rachel Reply:

    When you make this in your bread machine, how big of a loaf does it make? I just got a bread machine and don’t know much about using it yet, I don’t want to mess it up by putting it on the wrong setting. \

    [Reply]

  4. erin says

    This looks great! i’ve been wanting to bake bread for my family to use for sandwiches everyday. Do you think this would slice thin enough for sandwiches? can i store the extra baked loaves in the freezer?

    Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Yes, we use this bread for sandwiches – it’s a little more crumbly than store bought but it does work! Yes, you can put your extra loaves in the freezer in ziplock freezer bags and they will keep fine.

    [Reply]

  5. Heather T. says

    I happened to have found a trick from another site, to leave your loaves in the pans until completely cool, this makes the bread softer. I have been making your bread for a few months and the last two times I tried this and it really works. that way it makes for a “softer” sandwich bread, as I am trying to not buy bread and use this recipe. Also love your cinnamon bread we ate an entire loaf last night with dinner;}

    [Reply]

  6. says

    Thanks for this site and tutorial! I have been using your cheese cracker recipe and everyone LOVES them, but I continue to fail at getting my bread to rise. I’m going to try your recipe and method right now because I’m beyond determined to do this right. Oh, and I think it’s hilarious that you “spank” the bread after kneading and shaping. I’ll have to remember that step; maybe it will be the special key to make things work. ;D

    [Reply]

    Anna Reply:

    I was frustrates with bread not rising since moving to where we have city water. (I grew up with well water)Somewhere online I read that stuff they put in city water can kill your yeast and it won’t rise… different area’s are different. And also really hard water can kill it. So I tried buying spring water and sure enough… for the first time my bread actually raised really well! might work for you too?

    [Reply]

    Brandi Reply:

    The water thing is most definitely true. We actually have a Culligan water system and I used that. After 10 minutes…no bubbles. I read Anna’s advice and used well water and it bubbled very nnicely!

    [Reply]

  7. Trinity says

    I finally took the plunge and make a batch the other day. So yummy but I did learn to start earlier and not stop in the melting butter part to get dinner in the oven lol. Not bad for my first batch of bread ever.

    [Reply]

  8. Heather says

    This totally did not work for me :-( I ended up with a sticky, unmanageable mess. Perhaps I did something wrong…when do I add the remainder of the water?

    [Reply]

    cathi Reply:

    Second part of the water is added to the yeast and honey mixture. Don’t get frustrated, it can be really frustrating making bread. If you ended up with the sticky mess, you probably didn’t use enough flour. The dough will stick to you a little bit but will be easy to remove. Don’t give up-and if you have someone to help(an aunt, neighbor, friend)ask for help, it makes it so much easier and gives you a better idea what to expect. Good luck with the next batch.

    [Reply]

  9. Monica says

    I read in an Amish cookbook that if you spread butter over the top of the bread when it first comes out of the oven and then let cool half way in the pan, then put in a plastic bag, it keeps the bread nice and moist. I have tried this and is seem to work really well and helps the the crust to soften too. Love this bread recipe.

    [Reply]

  10. says

    I made a bread very similar to this for the daily bread at a vegetarian restaurant that I owned for years. I have a great addition for you to try. I kneaded in liberal equal amounts of sesame, poppy and raw sunflower seeds, then rolled the shaped loaves in an extra amount of the 3 seeds. The bread became very popular and was called “Chico’s 3 Seed Bread”. Makes great toast. Thanks for your recipe! I will try the butter idea…..I always used olive oil.

    [Reply]

  11. Amanda W. says

    Can you give more details about freezing your unbaked loaves? I’ve read some things about the need to increase yeast because some dies during freezing. I’m also wondering if you freeze it in a bread pan before you wrap it and how you package it to keep it fresh and without freezer burn.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I’ve not heard that info on adding more yeast. I usually mix the dough, knead it, then let it rise once. Next, I shape it and freeze the loaves before they rise a second time. I freeze them on cookie sheets. Once frozen, I transfer the frozen loaf into a freezer bag. When I want to bake it, I place it in a buttered bread pan overnight (on the countertop), then bake in the morning.

    [Reply]

    Kristina Reply:

    I recently read the same thing about increasing the yeast. Do you still mix dough knead it then let it rise once before freezing

    [Reply]

  12. Angie says

    Is the first step of adding water to 3 cups and then letting it sit for a while in place of soaking the grains? If I were to soak the grains overnight would I still add the water and let it sit? And also is it beneficial to soak the grains for only a couple hours. Like if I were to grind my flour first thing in the morning and then soak them until 1 or 2 in the afternoon? Thanks

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    No, this isn’t a soaked grain recipe. The only reason you add the water and let it soak in the flour is to help release the gluten before adding the remaining ingredients.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I still haven’t found a soaked grain wheat bread recipe we love – if/when I ever do – I’ll be sure to share it!

    [Reply]

  13. GZu says

    Great Recipe! The pictures/videos really helped. The yeast mixture did not bubble very much, and the dough was tougher and stiffer than in the videos. I did not have to add all 3 cups of flour when kneading. However, the end result was delicious, golden brown, fluffy and smells like heaven! tastes great with butter or honey. Thanks!

    [Reply]

  14. Brady says

    I have a question about the pictures above…..When I added to water to the flour in the beginning it was barely wet enough to combine everything….but yours looks like soup :/ If using packaged flour should we use way less than if it was fresh milled?
    Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Brady Reply:

    DUH!!! that is the picture of the yeast and honey…..uh oh!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    :)

    [Reply]

  15. Brady says

    I am having the hardest time with this recipe today :/ I cant get my yeast to bloom….I am using sAF brand. I am also trying to kneed it in my kitchenaid and it is tough, dry, and wont stick together…Help?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Yikes, I’m not sure why the yeast won’t do anything for you unless it’s old? Sounds like your dough needs a little more water – just add little bits at a time until it forms a nice dough ball.

    [Reply]

    Brady Reply:

    I have no idea! I went and got different yeast…and flour. Is it possible that there is too much honey for the yeast to get all bubbly? Your dough in the video is just so smooshy and elastic…..mine not so much. And the outer skin breaks….Maybe it needs more water in the beginning? I am new to making bread, so I’m not sure how exact these things have to be :/ Thanks for your help!

    On another note I was reading about your $4 gallon of raw milk. We pay $7 for half a gallon. I have raw milk envy! My s.i.l. is always telling me that groceries in the mid west are way cheeper. Looks like she is right! We are in CA. I guess there is a price to wearing flip flops all year and being 30 mins from the beach :)

    [Reply]

    Brady Reply:

    I feel like I have reached my comment limit on this post! :) Well, after 3 batches of dough being what I thought was dry and tough, and then my dough barely rising 2 times, I decided to just throw it in the oven so I could atleast make bread crumbs with it. WRONG! It was actually pretty darn good!!! I think in all my frustration I forgot to add the salt :/ Still delicious though. I am going to make it again today and try adding more water to see if I can get it to be more elastic and smooshy….and hopefully a better rise. Thanks!!

    Laura Reply:

    Glad it tasted great, even if there was frustration in the process!

    Amy Reply:

    SAF yeast (I believe) is instant yeast not active yeast.
    Does not need to be bloomed

    [Reply]

    Anna Reply:

    I have had trouble with yeast recently after I got married and now live where there is city water instead of well water. I did some research after many very bad attemps, new yeast, new flour etc. I found that city water can have things added to it to that kill the yeast. Also hard city water can make yeast not work too… and we happen to have hard city water! so bad i guess even our water filter didnt get enough of the stuff responsible for killing my yeast out so I tried spring water from the store… AND IT RAISED great! ahhh… I was starting to feel like something was wrong with me and my husband was becoming convinced I didnt really know how to make bread or cinnomon rolls like I had been claiming! sooo… maybe that will help you?

    [Reply]

  16. says

    Wow, letting half the flour sit in warm water helps bring out the gluten, thanks for the great tip! I have been adding vital wheat gluten but I’ll try this next time.

    [Reply]

    Mary Reply:

    Hi, just to follow up on my previous comment.
    I made my bread this time without vital wheat gluten.
    I soaked the flour in warm water as you describe.
    It worked and my bread turn out beautifully!
    THANK YOU! I WON’T HAVE TO BAKE WITH VITAL WHEAT GLUTEN ANYMORE!

    [Reply]

    Wendy Ray Reply:

    My Mother-in-law always uses a teaspoon of lemon juice or vitamin C powder (or a crushed vitamin C chewable) to help activate the gluten in her bread. We bought one big order of wheat that sure needed it (it did help a lot), but generally it’s a step I skip. You can try that if the soaking is ever not quite enough.

    [Reply]

  17. Julia says

    This was my third attempt (and third recipe used) to make whole wheat bread, and it was my only edible batch! Very tasty! I don’t think it rose as much as it was supposed to, but I will definitely try it again. Thanks so much for the recipe.

    [Reply]

  18. Leah says

    How many loaves of bread does this recipe yeild. Looks like about 2, but I see you have 4 pans. Thanks.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    You’re right – it does yeild two loaves. I had doubled it when taking pictures, just to make things confusing. ;)

    [Reply]

  19. Juli says

    Maybe you could explain the kneading the dough step? For some reason the videos are not working and I am at a loss since I’ve never made bread before. I googled ‘kneading dough’ but I’m definitely confused as to how much kneading is enough.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I guess you could describe the process of kneading as “folding and squishing, folding and squishing” the dough over and over for several minutes. I wonder why the video isn’t working?!

    [Reply]

  20. Tab says

    Will I need to alter the recipe any if I use rapid dry yeast

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I don’t think so, but can’t say for sure.

    [Reply]

  21. Joelyn says

    When I combined the water, yeast and honey it never did get bubbly. I tried this twice with the same results. I know my yeast is good because I went on to use another recipe for bread and it turned out fine. Do you have any idea why I might be having a problem with this? I would really like to try your recipe.

    [Reply]

    Missy Reply:

    Maybe your water was too warm? I’ve killed yeast too many times because I was impatient and used water that was too warm. If you checked that and it still didn’t work, keep experimenting and let us know what you find out!

    [Reply]

    LindseyforLaura@HHM Reply:

    I like that Missy said her water has been too hot, because I have had the
    opposite troubles before! :) yeast can be finicky. When I make this bread
    I have to run my water at the hottest it will go and use it so the yeast
    is activated. Experimentation is probably best. If you think it is too cool
    try making the water hotter, and visa versa. :)

    [Reply]

    Jerry Reply:

    I used instant yeast when I baked, since that was the only thing in my grocery store. From what I gather, you should use a little over half the amount of normal yeast.

    I used room temperature water, but accidentally added some freezing cold maple syrup without thinking and was sure it would have killed it, but lo and behold it started bubbling less than 10 minutes later.

    [Reply]

    C. Dazey Reply:

    If you are buying yeast in bulk (like at Sam’s Club) then you don’t need to add it to a liquid and let it “bloom.” Most modern yeasts should be added with the flour (strange I know!). Check the side of the package-it should give you more information. I have been baking bread for years (with bulk yeast), and I don’t ever wait for the yeast to activate. Just mix and go. Best wishes.

  22. Missy says

    I made ythis recipe today and I can’t believe how wonderfully the bread turned out! Not that it wouldn’t, your recipes are great! I was just surprised that I was able to make bread BY HAND and it come out as well as it did. I hesitated all day about making your bread, or making a whole wheat recipe for bread machines. I LOVE my bread machine. I usually let the machine do the mixing and kneading, then I take it out, put it in pans and let it do the final rise before baking. I’m so GLAD I used your recipe. The crumb is moist and dense and the flavor is amazing! We couldn’t wait to taste it – slathered butter all over the pieces we cut and gobbled them down! Thank you for this wonderful recipe – my family thanks you too! Many blessings!

    [Reply]

  23. Jerry says

    I made bread for the first time using your recipe and it turned out beautifully, thanks so much!

    I did make one adjustment–replaced honey with maple syrup, since that’s what I had in the house.

    Best bread I’ve ever had! I always find the store-bought brown bread, even from bakeries, tends to be too dry. The homemade bread was just delicious and I don’t have to guess as to what I’m actually eating!

    [Reply]

  24. Carol Ann says

    I live in South Texas but have been following your blog and many recipes. Have found them very helpful, and a friend and I have begun ordering from Azure Standard. We use the same type of wheat as you (yes, we’re copying a lot of your stuff!). I have found that there are lots of hulls and even a little trash/stones in the wheat. I have spent much time picking through it but my friend just grinds it all up. Do you think it’s worth picking through? Do you pick through yours? (sometimes if the kids are in trouble it makes a perfect disciplinary chore!) I was worried about hurting my new wheat grinder (yes, also the same as yours!) What do you think? Thanks for your ideas.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I guess I haven’t found it to be much of a problem. I do pick out anything obvious that I see, but overall I haven’t worried about it too much. :)

    [Reply]

  25. Sarah B says

    Okay I’m trying to have faith cause the bread is in the oven now. But it felt like a brick! I couldn’t even add the last 3 cups! I don’t think I added but maybe 5 cups! Don’t think I messed up on liquid. Is that a correct recipe? 6 cups of flour to 1 3/4 of water??? Help??

    [Reply]

    Wendy Ray Reply:

    Laura may have a better answer, but here’s my two cents: Moisture and gluten content will vary depending on your flour and whether you used honey or sugar, so the flour amount is, as I understand it, 3 cups initially, then more to make a dough you can start to work with, then maybe up to 6 cups TOTAL by the end. Don’t give up! ;)

    [Reply]

    LindseyforLaura@HHM Reply:

    Wendy is right! It all depends on the kind of flour you use and the other
    ingredients (wet vs. dry). It should be just fine! Bread is fun to
    experiment with because you figure out exactly what works for you and
    before you know it you’ll be baking perfect bread!

    [Reply]

  26. Wendy Ray says

    Thank you for sharing your recipe and your methods! After making bread for a large family twice every week since I was six years old, it just continued into my routine as a newlywed… fast forward 12 years, and only last month did I realize that the amount of homemade bread we consume in a week could EASILY cost $80!! And that’s for mid-quality $2 store-bought bread! It would cost over $100 a week if we ate as much bread as we do, and bought it at $3 or $4 (or $5!!)a loaf! There’s NO WAY we pay half that, even if I make it with higher-cost sweeteners (like honey or maple syrup) and oil (like olive), AND we’re missing out on all those unpronounceable ingredients. (I do have my own wheat grinder, and we make a huge annual purchase of bulk wheat from Walton Wheat (honeyvillegrain.com charges more, but ships any order to anywhere in the US for $5). I’m sure that saves a bundle over buying wheat flour)

    We love to add flax seeds to our bread: a tablespoon for each loaf or two. Adds fiber, a nice nutty taste, some good fats, and you CAN leave out your other oil/butter, except for oiling pans, maybe. I always kneaded my bread in oil, not flour. Kneading in flour looks fun, and would be easier to clean up when the toddlers have helped. :)
    Thanks again for sharing!

    [Reply]

  27. Kathy B. says

    So exited to find a recipe that does not require a kitchen tool that I do not have. I’ve got more time than money, so this recipe is perfect! Can’t wait to try it!!

    [Reply]

  28. Sarah says

    I thought it was funny, so I just thought I’d let you know that my 2 1/2 yr old daughter is really bothered by not being able to see your head in your “how to” videos! She stood next to me while I watched both of them and repeated over and over, “I can’t see her head. I want to see her head. Where is her head?! I need to see her head.” and so forth. :)

    [Reply]

  29. Amy says

    I’ve been testing out a few different bread recipes over that last month or so. This one got a big thumbs up from my boys. I love it because it’s easy and yummy. Low maintenance… just my style.

    [Reply]

  30. says

    Hi there!

    How do you like stoneware vs. glass to bake bread?

    Thanks :)

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    I much prefer stoneware as I like the end result of the bread, plus it’s easier to get the loaf out of the pan. :)

    [Reply]

  31. April says

    So I’ve read about a hundred comments and I don’t find anyone mentioning how small (short) their loaves are compared to store bought loaves. But when I look at your pictures, your loaves are quite short (at least it appears that way since they didn’t even raise up to the level of the pan).
    I made 2 loaves tonight. Smells delicious, tastes delicious, sliced perfectly……but short smallish loaves. Just double checking that this is normal. Yes, everything rose twice, looked just like your pictures. I’m just wondering if I put the whole batch of dough in one pan if it would have turned out to be more like store bought size/height. Thoughts?

    [Reply]

    LindseyforLaura@HHM Reply:

    That would probably work out fine!

    [Reply]

  32. Jane says

    A thought for anything you might deem as a failure… dough hard or not rising… roll it out cut into squares sprinkle with salt and bake.
    Make sure to add more water if necessary.

    In essence, Don’t Let It Drive You Crazy, Make Crackers!

    God Bless You and Have A GREAT Day!

    [Reply]

    Miki Reply:

    What a great idea. Thank you because so far I have had 4 flops in a row while waiting on the one to succeed.

    [Reply]

  33. Miki says

    Please help…I have tried this recipe 3 times and I think I am doing something wrong with the yeast. My dough never rises. I am following the directions and don’t know what else to do. I am not a experienced bread maker so using and activating yeast is all new to me. Can anyone help? Thank you!!

    [Reply]

    Jane Reply:

    http://www.breadworld.com/VideoList.aspx
    Fleishmann,s Yeast Video Page for using yeast.

    [Reply]

    Miki Reply:

    Thank you! I saw the video and checked the temp of water before adding the yeast and it still didnt rise. Could it be the honey instead of sugar because she says to add a tablespoon of sugar.

    [Reply]

    Miki Reply:

    I am gonna get this if it kills me.

    Jane Reply:

    I do know that yeast is alive I do believe it a fungus…
    Honey has antibacterial properties, not antifungal…
    I guess I would try the sugar first, then maybe a different honey.
    Honey has been found in the pyamids-STILL GOOD! So the age of the
    honey shouldn’t be a factor.

    You can always call and ask about honey in bread recipes ;p
    Fleischmann’s 800-988-7808

    I did some hunting on their site and found a free recipe book
    for 1.00 S&H

    Also try http://www.kingarthurflour.com/

    I haven’t actually made bread in a while I think I will this
    weekend. One of my favorite recipes is to take any bread recipe
    1 loaf you like/love, roll it out about 1/4 inch thick, sprinkle
    with cinnamon, sugar, chocolate chips/nuts or
    jam/jelly. Roll jelly roll style(hmm)slice into 12 pieces
    place in a 13X9 pan and bake, let rise 20 minutes or until doubled
    in size. Bake at 400 15-20 minutes. Frost if you please!

    I pray you efforts are rewarded soon, God Bless you!

  34. Miki says

    Thank you all for the help. I did go ahead an try sugar and that worked. I also tried the honey again and it didn’t. After today I decided I am going to go ahead and call Fleischmann’s. I will post what their response is. I can’t be the only one who is or has had this issue. I just want some bread for my family and I, I didn’t know it was going to be this challenging. On the up swing I have made many other recipes from this site and we love them ALL. Thank you Laura!!

    [Reply]

    Alicia Reply:

    Miki, I feel your pain. (: It can be very frustrating when bread doesn’t behave. (: Just a thought here..do you think your water/honey mixture is staying warm enough to wake up the yeast? I usually use *hot* water when making bread b/c by the time cool honey is added, the mixture becomes properly “warm.” (Hot water + cool honey = warm lovely environment for yeast!) Sorry if this is something you’ve already thought about. Have fun..you’ll get it. I like the cracker idea someone posted above here. All the best!!

    [Reply]

    Miki Reply:

    OH MY!!, I never thought of the honey “cooling” the water. Do you think if I warmed the honey and checked the temp it would work? I am gonna try it. Thank you so very much for the insite.

    [Reply]

  35. Christin says

    I am a beginning bread maker but am an avid baker so I do have some experience.

    My bread is always a bit dense (not necessarily this recipe but all breads I make). This is my first time trying your recipe and I just finished the first kneading. I watched your video. I’ve always kneaded the way you demonstrated but my dough doesn’t seem as soft as yours – it holds the fold that I make really well, even when I give it a good push. Do you have any tips?

    Also, what do you do if the yeast doesn’t bubble? I have a problem with this. My yeast is a few months old (I bought the jar) but I do store it in the fridge as the jar instructs me to and it has only been a few months (the jar says to use it within 6). Do you have any tips hear?

    Thank you in advance for the help! I’m really looking forward to tasting this recipe.

    [Reply]

    Christin Reply:

    When I did the second need and shaping, the dough was still very stiff and not soft like yours appears to be. I think the bread came out good but it could be less dense and I think the stiffness of the dough as I knead may be related to that. Please let me know your thoughts. Thank you!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Try adding just a little less flour next time to see if that helps. :)

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    If your yeast isn’t bubbling, it can mean that it is old and dead, or it could be that it isn’t activating properly because the liquid temperature is too hot and kills it. Those are just some ideas on that. Regarding your dough being too dense and not kneading well, it sounds like you could try adding a little less flour to see if that helps.

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  36. Veronica says

    I am in the final stages of this right now! In 30 minutes the loaves go in the oven. I am a disaster in the kitchen so if this works you will be considered the guru of all guru’s! I just love your humor throughout. Wish me luck!

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  37. Jenna says

    Umm.. I think I am going to have to call you my hero? I have been looking for so long for a recipe that doesn’t have white flour and or powdered milk, shortening!!?? GROSS! You just made my day as I stumbled onto your site. This is being printed immediately and made in the morning!! Thank you!! Now I’m excited I can use my mill grinder again!

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  38. Sandi says

    Has anyone used a kitchen aid with the kneader attachment to knead the bread instead of doing it by hand? Is there a difference in kneading time?

    [Reply]

    shannon Reply:

    I used my kitchen aid this morning. This is my first shot, so I took a chance and have no idea how this might turn out. It’s not looking like the bread is rising….I hope someone experienced will post an answer because I sure would love for it to be ok to use the mixer! :) good luck!

    [Reply]

    Jane Reply:

    ; D

    [Reply]

    Jane Reply:

    This is probably long since an issue…I go by how it feels,
    the elasticity. I don’t know how else to explain it.
    You have to take the dough hook out and pick it up, or at least I do.
    LOL Good luck!

    [Reply]

  39. says

    HOw do you slice the bread to have equal slices for sandwiches? Do you use a bread slicer?

    [Reply]

    LindseyforLaura@HHM Reply:

    Nothing fancy…just a regular knife. (But practice probably helps!)
    :)

    [Reply]

    Jane Reply:

    I found that turning my bread while I cut it works well for me.
    By that I mean, the first time I cut it is top side up,
    then on its side, then maybe the bottom up, then the side.
    It takes the irregularity out of the slices, because your hand
    tends to move the same way so the way you cut becomes more pronounced.
    I do the same thing with cheese.
    Also keep in mind that sometimes you cannot cut on a particular side,
    because the loaf will crumble or smooch, so rotate while considering
    the structure of the loaf.
    Do I put much thought into these things! Hope my intense thoughts
    on bread cutting helps!

    [Reply]

  40. Angie says

    Can this recipe be made with regular yeast? I sent my husband out for active dry yeast and he got economical on me and bout 2 pounds of regular yeast. I hate for that to go to waste, but most recipes call for active dry. Can you tell me the difference? Thank you!

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Sure, go ahead and make it with regular yeast – you should be just fine!

    [Reply]

  41. Mike says

    Hi, my bread looks great going to the oven, then it continues to rise and the top slips to one side. Looks like a bad hair piece slipping to one side or the other.. Bread tastes great but it looks funny.. Any tips you can give me to resolve this problem?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Sounds like you may be waiting a little bit too long before putting it into the oven to bake – so it is over-rising. Try cutting down your rise time by 10 minutes and see if that helps!

    [Reply]

  42. says

    Hi there, this recipe looks like what I need, but I am interested in making 8 loaves not 2… You said you have doubled it. Do you double EVERYTHING including the yeast? The sponge?
    Thanks

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Yes, I double everything in the recipe, including the yeast. :)

    [Reply]

    Leona Reply:

    Thank you so much! I made it today and even though I fogot to add the butter (I added it later!) The dough was a fantastic texture and rose beautifully. I have never EVER had 100% whole wheat bread rise like this. I plan on doubling it again to get 8 loaves so I only have to bake bread once a week. Thanks again! Fantastic.

    [Reply]

    Leona Reply:

    Oh and I did have to add more water to the flour in the first step and then again before kneeding to get the right consistancy but my flour seems to absorb more than normal. Anyway, it worked!

  43. Jan says

    I made a half recipe in my bread machine today. I substituted 1 C of sourdough starter for 1/2 C water and 1/2 C flour and still added the yeast. It came out great! And the house still smells like fresh bread!!

    [Reply]

  44. says

    Hi..just wondering why my loaves of bread do rise but they have like flat tops when baking time is done! So disappointed because I have no trouble mixing or kneading a perfect dough! Looking forward to a reply!…you have a good thing going here on site! :)

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    My guess is that it rises a little too long before going into the oven. If it rises too much, it will “deflate” in the oven, so to speak. Hope that helps!

    [Reply]

    Debbie Reply:

    Thank you! Yes, I did make another batch of bread yesterday (wasn’t going to give up & very determined to get it right!) & you confirmed my mistake of allowing the mixture to rise too much! So I watched it closely this time round, made the necessary change & the loaves came out beautifully! Can not wait to make some more! :) I am into the routine of making one batch wholewheat & the other wholewheat molasses raisin, just to mix it up! My family enjoys homemade cooking & baking, so now I am passing the tradition on to our two university students, our son & daughter, who both make a practice of enjoying whipping up meals & desserts when time allows it, in their busy schedules away from home!
    I can see this happening with your young family as well, where they are getting exposed to the same thing now!..and it is all good in these times of so much fast food out there! :(
    Thank you so much again for responding to my bread-making concern! Bread is a fairly new enjoyed hobby of mine, which I make by hand like yourself, so I also have your website bookmarked for browsing & trying out new recipes, etc.
    Keep up the great work! :)

    [Reply]

  45. jeana goodwin says

    I made this today and it tastes great. It rose in the bowl and rose a little more in the pan but turned out small. Any ideas what happened and how to change it? Like I said, it tastes great, looks great, good texture, not too dense. Just small.?

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Hmm, not sure you did anything wrong necessarily. My loaves are usually not very big either.

    [Reply]

    Mandi Reply:

    Wait a little longer on the rise – or give your bread a warmer place to rise. Our modern air circulated/conditioned homes don’t always provide bacteria friendly environments!

    [Reply]

  46. Kelly says

    I tried this with my baked spaghetti bread recipe, and it turned out perfectly! I made just one loaf, so I cut all the ingredients in half… the yeast never activated because I tried to use half of it also. Once I figured out I needed to use the full yeast, everything went smoothly! It’s so much better than the frozen bread I usually use! Thanks so much for posting! :)

    [Reply]

  47. Mandi says

    I’ve been on this bread kick recently, and I’ve got to say, I use the same recipe you do, BUT I put it together completely differently! When all the hoopla came out about the dough stabilizers used in many commercial breads I decided my family would not be eating store bought bread any longer and I had to find a way to make it fast enough to do in between everything else that needed doing. Anyhoo. I mix my bread like biscuits. All flour (I use a bread flour specifically) but 1 cup goes in – the one cup is reserved for when you’re kneading in the last of the moisture, sugar, yeast and salt. Liquids and fats are heated together and added to the dry ingredients by making a ‘well’ in the center and pouring the liquid into it making whats often called a “shaggy” dough – it’s hairy at first because it sticks and pulls away from the sides of the pan.

    Activating the yeast in an age where we have reliable yeast unless we have done something adverse to it is an extra step that we can leave out. Extra headaches and dirty dishes.

    The yeast will activate in dough. While you’re mixing your dry ingredients preheat your oven to 200 degrees. When it’s heated turn it off and leave it open till you can put your hand on a rack for about ten seconds without burning it.

    Put your dough in a lightly oiled, heat safe bowl, cover with a towel and put it in the oven for about 20 minutes. Voila. Risen Dough. If you’re having a play kind of day, you could do this again, or you could knead and put it right into loaf pans (or portion and freeze – the yeast will turn back on when you thaw it in a warm room making bread an anytime thing)set your oven to 350 and put the pans right in.

    The time the oven is preheating will give you your second rise, and then move right into cooking. This takes what could take hours down to roughly an hour to the oven. This is also great if you want to use Comfy in the Kitchens Calzone Recipe – although I tried it with bread dough tonight and I’m thinking a pizza dough (less oil, less liquid, crisper dough) might give a nicer texture.

    [Reply]

    Mandi Reply:

    Clarifying, all dry ingredients are together before adding liquid and the last cup of flour is kneaded in as needed!

    [Reply]

  48. susan says

    yeast is a yeast, not a fungus or a bacteria. When you try to get your yeast dough to rise, if the air in your house is cool, it won’t rise. I often will make bread when I am doing other baking or cooking so the room is slightly warmer than the air conditioned cool my husband likes! Yeast needs sugar (honey, syrup, sugar) water or other liquid, and a little bit of heat to rise. Salt added to the yeast will make it not rise very well.
    Biology lesson: Yeast feeds on carbohydrates. When it feeds, it gives off carbon dioxide. Kneeding the dough is not for dispersing yeast throughout the entire loaf but rather to make the gluten become stretchy. If a person doesn’t kneed the dough enough, as in about 5 to 7 minutes or the preferred 10 minutes, the gluten (flour protein) will not stretch. This might be a reason someone’s bread is not light or fluffy. It is the carbon dioxide (from the yeast feeding on the carbohydrate sugars and perhaps some of the flour) which creates the little-holes texture in the dough. When it is baked, the yeast dies, and the carbon dioxide holes are still filled with air. If you do not kneed the dough long enough, the gluten will not stretch, and the little holes will not form. You might get one large hole or none at all.
    One other thing–if you make a larger loaf of bread, or use the entire recipe for just one loaf, you will need to bake the bread longer (of course) and the chance of the top browning too much increases the longer the loaf is in the oven baking.
    I use the ratio for my breads of one cup of liquid for three cups of flour. I use less liquid if I use honey, and less if I use oil. I don’t add the salt until I add the flour. And, I use a bread maker for all but the rye breads I make. I like the feel of rye bread when I kneed it.
    100 years ago, the women made their own yeast by simply collecting it from the air. They made a paste of flour and water and left it outside for a day or two. There is enough natural yeast around for the spores to gather; the women used this for sourdough if they didn’t have a start from someone else.

    [Reply]

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