This simple and hearty loaf of bread is made with 100% whole wheat flour.
The holidays are now behind us and the new year has begun. It’s a time of reflection and a time to look to the future with new goals and resolutions. For many of us that means we’re trying to eat healthier. I’m tossing the last of my Christmas candy, eating more salads, and baking whole wheat bread instead of cookies.
It’s just so lucky that not only is this 100% whole wheat bread a little bit better for you, but it’s delicious too! This loaf is nutty, chewy, and slightly sweet— and anything but dense or dry. I love it with butter or jam, but it’s also great for sandwiches too.
How to make bread with 100% whole wheat flour
Some of you may think that recipes— especially bread— made with whole wheat flour are more dense, dry or even less flavorful. And while it’s true that whole wheat flour can weigh down other ingredients in a baked good, it doesn’t have to! This loaf is made with only whole wheat flour, there’s no all-purpose flour or bread flour added. And if you follow my recipe and instructions, adding only enough flour as needed for the dough to clear the sides of the bowl, and kneading it long enough to develop the gluten in the flour, you’ll have a soft and tender (and tasty!) loaf of bread.
You can of course prepare this whole wheat bread by hand, but I recommend using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook if you have one. A stand mixer will prevent you from accidentally adding too much flour, and it will help you knead the dough long and well enough to give the bread a light and airy texture.
What do you need to make this whole wheat bread?
There are only 6 ingredients needed to make this recipe:
- Whole wheat flour
- Butter— Vegetable oil will also work.
- Molasses— I love the dark smoky flavor the molasses gives this whole wheat bread. You can also use honey or maple syrup, though the bread will be milder and lighter in color.
- Active dry yeast
More whole wheat bread recipes
You might enjoy these other great bread recipes made with whole wheat flour:
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Note: This recipe was originally published January 2013. It was sponsored by Red Star Yeast, which is a brand I still love and use in my bread baking.
100% Whole Wheat Bread
- 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) water
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) butter
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) molasses
- 4 cups (450 grams) whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons (8 grams) salt
- 2 1/4 teaspoon (1 envelop, 7 grams) active dry yeast
- In a small saucepan, heat the water, butter, and molasses over medium heat until butter is melted. Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes (to 120-130 degrees F).
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine 2 cups of the flour, the salt, and yeast. Add the liquids and mix on low until moistened.
- Continue to mix on low and add the remaining flour 1/4 cup at a time until dough is firm (you might need a little more or less than 4 total cups). Knead with the mixer for 3-5 minutes or by hand for 5-8 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic.
- Place dough in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, 1 hour. Punch down the dough, and let sit for 10 minutes.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out into a rough rectangle about 10 inches wide and 12 inches long. Roll up dough and into a greased 9x5-inch loaf pan.
- Cover with plastic wrap and let rise again until doubled again, 30 minutes.
- Bake at 375 degrees F for 30-40 minutes, until loaf is golden brown. Let cool in pan 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to let cool completely.