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The Easiest Whole Wheat Bread Recipe You’ll Ever Make

This is the easiest whole wheat bread recipe you’ll ever make, and the only recipe you’ll ever need. If doesn’t require any kneading and makes an amazing, chewy loaf! 

Finally, the whole-wheat flax bread recipe I’ve been promising! The full recipe is at the bottom, but I’ll give you all you readers some pictures and generic instructions first so you know some insider tips, if you happen to be new to the bread making world.

Step 1. Combine the oil, honey, and molasses together. And if you’re smart like me, you’ll measure the oil first then the honey so it will slide out more easily. Then you’ll let your measuring tools hang over the bowl to get all the goop out.

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Step 2. Next add the water and your yeast, give it a quick spin in the mixer and let it sit for a few minutes to make sure your yeast is alive. Yep, it’s ALIIIIIVE!!!! [Poofy + bubbly = alive yeast]

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Step 3. You’ll add 2 c. flour and flaxseed meal first and mix it. Then add the rest of the flour and mix until it starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. You want it to be “tacky” – see how it sticks to my finger? How tacky.

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Step 4. If you have a Bosch mixer, put your cute little lid on. If you’re using something else, cover the bowl with the method of your choice. You’re going to let this rise, right in the bowl, with the bread blade and everything, for 30-60 minutes.

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Step 5. While the bread is rising, take your dog for a run to offset the calorie intake that will result from eating the baked bread. Tip: If you’d like to improve your splits, try to get caught in a hail storm while you’re running.

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Step 6. Come back hot and sweaty to find a hot and fluffy dough.

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Step 7. Turn on the mixer just for a few seconds to beat it back into submission knock it down close to it’s original size, pre-run, pre-rising. Weeeeeeee!!!

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Step 8. Place on a floured surface and if you’re OCD or just want an excuse to use your food scale [I won’t tell you which applies to me], divide the dough in half. Exactly in half. Or just eyeball it. Whatever. I won’t judge.

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Step 9. Form them into loaves and stick in greased pans. You’ll notice my pans look like they haven’t been washed in a very long time. You’re right. Here’s a little trick: never wash your bread pans. They’ll get seasoned and produced a better crust and help your bread pop out more easily. I learned that from my mom, who has baked bread every weekend for as long as I’ve known her and I’m pretty sure she did it before I graced her life too.

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Step 10. Cover with a damp dishtowel. If you don’t have a clean one, cover with saran wrap.

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Step 11. Let them rise until about double in size and they start to come above the edge of the pan. Now, this next step is important. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT fall asleep while the oven is preheating to 350 degrees. [This may or may not have been my second nap of the day.]

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Step 12: When your oven is preheated [or if you fail to follow instructions and happen to fall asleep, do this upon waking], stick the loaves in the oven and pull them out about 35-40 minutes later. They should be golden brown and if you pop them out of the pans and tap them on the bottom, it should sound hollow.

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Final Notes: If you happened to fall asleep for 45 minutes and let your dough rise too much, your results will be collapsed loaves instead of lovely rounded tops. I’m so ashamed.

So ashamed, that I’ll try to cover up the emotion with lots of bread and butter. And don’t you go touching my end piece. It’s mine. Even if the loaves turned out ghastly-looking, let me assure you that this piece [and the next one] still tasted just fine.

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Alright, here’s the details for the recipe, which I adapted from this recipe. I’ll be honest, I never followed the original recipe, but I like to think my version is better.

whole wheat bread recipe

The Easiest Whole Wheat Bread Recipe You’ll Ever Make

[makes 2 loaves]

Ingredients
  • 2 3/4 cups very warm water
  • 1/3 cup olive oil [or whatever oil makes you happy]
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 tablespoon salt [I used sea salt]
  • 2 tablespoons dry active yeast
  • 6-7 c. whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 c. milled flaxseed
Directions
  1. Place the oil, honey, and molasses in the bowl of your mixer. Admire how pretty it looks.
  2. Add the salt, water and the yeast. Let it sit for a few minutes, until puffy and bubbly.
  3. Add two cups of the flour and the milled flaxseed and mix until well combined.
  4. With your mixer turned on to the lowest setting, gradually add more flour until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Don’t add too much – you want it to be fairly sticky [see Step 3 in the pictures]. I usually add around 6 1/2 cups total [including the 2 cups added above].  The trick is to have your dough stand up with the least amount of flour so the bread will be fluffy. Don’t overmix it.
  5. When your dough is holding together, leave it in the mixer, cover the bowl and let it rise for 30-60 minutes depending on the warmth of your kitchen. It doesn’t have to double, but you want it puffy.
  6. Spray two bread pans with non-stick spray. [My pans are 9×5.]
  7. Mix the dough again just enough to knock it down close to the original size. Just a few seconds on the lowest setting is all you need.
  8. Drop the dough on a floured surface. Divide the dough in half and form each one into a loaf shape. Do not roll the dough out with a rolling pin – use your hands to make a ball and then turn the dough under itself over and over until you have a nice loaf shape – smooth top, smooth sides.
  9. Place the loaves in your bread pans and let them rise until almost doubled. [Remember, do not fall asleep at this point.]
  10. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for about 35 minutes, until the tops are golden and if you tap the bottom of the loaves, they sound hollow.
  11. Remove from the pans and cool the loaves on a rack. In theory, you shouldn’t cut the bread until they are fully cooled because they still do a little cooking while cooling and if you cut it while cooling, it releases the heat. Yeah, right – go ahead and cut into that baby, slap some butter on and enjoy it hot.

Note on flour: I usually make this with King Arthur whole wheat flour. I recently bought the Whole Foods 365 brand of whole wheat flour to save money and used that instead. It was still good, but I really could tell a difference in taste. I think it’s much better with the King.

Approximate nutrition stats per slice (based on 12 slices per loaf): 180 calories, 4.2 g fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 237 mg sodium, 32 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 5 g sugar, 4.5 g protein.

Storage tips:

  • Don’t place your loaves in a bag until completely cooled. They’ll get sweaty. Ick.
  • Do not store the bread in the fridge – it will get hard and the texture will suck. It will keep for about a week at room temperature just fine before it starts to get stale.
  • If you want to store the second loaf, once completely cooled, wrap it in saran wrap and then wrap foil over that and freeze.

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  • Ashley
    at

    I’m going to try this out. Once I get moved into my new house. It better be awesome. 🙂

    • Teri
      at

      Oh, it’s good. 🙂 And it makes the best buttered toast I’ve ever had.

      Congrats on your house, by the way!!

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)
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    YUM!!! So glad you shared this recipe, I’ve been looking for a good healthy homemade bread recipe for a while now 🙂

    • Teri
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      I hope you like it! If you try it out, let me know what you think.

  • Karlee
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    I feel so special to be mentioned by name 🙂 And I can’t wait to try this bread! You put it up just in time…I’m due to make more bread in a couple days!

    Where do you get your flaxseed? And do you grind it yourself or can you buy it milled?

    Thanks SO much!!

    • Teri
      at

      It’s the least I could do to mention your name. 😉

      I bought my milled flaxseed at Whole Foods. Last time, I bought Bob’s Red Mill milled flaxseed; I’ve never ground it myself.

      I hope you like it!

      • Karlee
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        I’ll admit, I’m a little afraid to go to Whole Foods. I’m afraid that once I go, I’ll become addicted and never be able to go to a normal grocery store again! And I’m not sure my food budget can allow that 🙂

        P.S. I’ve started reading In Defense of Food. Wow. It is awesome!

        • Teri
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          You know, Whole Foods really isn’t that much more expensive, especially if you buy most of your food from the produce section or bulk section. Give it a go. 🙂

          I’m so glad you like that book!

          • Karlee
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            Ok, you’ve convinced me 🙂 (Took a lot huh?) Are there any other similar stores that you know of/would recommend in Utah?

          • Teri
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            hahaha! I love convincing people so easily! I like Good Earth, but I don’t remember if they have produce…

  • Ashley
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    I read this in my google reader last night but it wouldn’t pop up on your site until today. Weird. I couldn’t WAIT to comment. I love that you fell asleep while it was rising, lol. SO excited to make this. And that Bosch contraption you have… I have NEVER seen it. Is it for hard core bread makers like yourself?? Chris + I would looove this bread..mmm Now, come over and lets play + bake all day. NOW!!! I also need a reason to use my food scale….not for calorie counting but for baking accuracy. And, I think you are probably OCD and wanted an excuse to use your food scale…am I right? 😉 Lastly, I want a GARMIN watch!!!

    • Teri
      at

      I was having publishing issues last night – sorry to make you wait!

      The Bosch mixer is the kind of mixer my mom always had growing up [but her’s is like industrial strength and not made of plastic like mine]. It’s like an ugly version of a kitchen aid. It’s really good at handling lots of dough – my mom’s machine can make a dough for FOUR loaves. I’ve never tried that many because uh, there are just two of us. YES!!! I would love a play/bake date. Please, let’s make it happen. I miss the mountains anyway. 😉

      And um, yes, I’m a little OCD. Good guess. But I’m sure you only guessed because you are the same way! 😉

      Yes, you do want a Garmin watch. But if you have any OCD tendancies, it may drive you crazy sometimes.

  • Addie
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    I wish I was good at making bread. I can make banana bread but when it comes to yeast and all that responsibility…I fail. lol maybe when you come out to SL next you can come over and make bread with me? 🙂

    • Teri
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      It just takes practice to get a feel for how the dough should look/feel, etc. I’d love to give you a tutorial sometime!

  • Lizzie
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    Can this recipe be used in a bread maker? I know… I’m lazy

    • Teri
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      No idea…I have never touched a bread maker in my life. 🙂 But seriously – this is the easiest bread in the world to make without a bread mixer.

      • Lizzie
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        So I made the bread today and sent you a text picture of my process(I am not as smooth as you) but it is taking FOREVER to rise… I am nervous since this is my first legit bread I have made. How long does it usually take to rise? Should it be somewhere warm? would that even help? i am just super excited to eat it!!! You are the best!

        • Teri
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          Hi love! sorry, I’m just checking my comments and just saw your text! Beautiful red Kitchen Aid! The first rise takes about 30-60 minutes. What kind of yeast did you use? A warm spot does help but as long as your kitchen is freezing it should rise. Did it work out??? I hope so!!!

          • Lizzie
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            It was AMAZING!!! Thank you SOOO much! We love the bread. It was fun making it the legit way and not cheating with the bread maker. I will admit though that i am excited to try it in the maker next time to see the difference. Thank you SO much for the recipe! I also made Quinoa for the first time tonight. It was SO good! I boiled it with a crushed garlic clove and chicken bouillon. I heated up on the stove a can of black beans and one can stewed tomatoes. Seasoned it with Cumin, garlic salt and dried minced onions. It was so good! Thanks for the Quinoa introduction! I LOVE the texture. It makes it so fun to eat.

          • Teri
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            Lizzie I am SO proud of you!!! Homemade bread – the real way! – and quinoa in one night??? You rock!! I’m so happy you liked everything. <3 you. LOTS 🙂

  • Janie
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    Teri-Thanks for sharing. I got a new bread maker/mixer for Christmas and haven’t used it yet. Hopefully a new recipe will get me in the spirit!

    • Teri
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      I hope the bread turns out well for you Janie! Miss you! Can’t wait to see your preggo belly! 🙂

      • Janie
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        Terri-Hey! I made my first round artisan bread last night! I was impressed it tasted as good if not better than many restaurants… As for the prego belly, I think it popped out over night b/c I have been the topic of discussion at work today. I am definitely not used to people looking at my tummy and not used to this round thing protruding out of me, it’s weird! I am looking at flights to NC for the weekends of May 7 and 14th, will you and Courtney be in town?!

        • Teri
          at

          I’m so glad your bread turned out well! Way to go! 🙂

          I was thinking of going to Utah over the 7th for Mother’s Day but nothing is set in stone yet. We are going to Seattle in May but probably not those weekends. And I’m pretty sure Courtney will still be around. That will be so fun to have you here!!

  • Emilyeatsclean
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    OMG…..that bread looks ahhh-mazing!!! I need to make some of this soooon!

    -emily http://www.emilyeatsclean.wordpress.com

  • Jessica @ WHY DONTCHA RUN
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    I recently began making my own wheat bread and am hooked! It’s so tasty and good for you. 🙂 I use applesauce instead of oil in my recipe and can’t even tell a difference!

    • Teri
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      I know, it’s so much better than the store bread! I use applesauce in everything else as a substitute for oil, but never thought about trying it for bread! I’ll give it a whirl next time. 🙂

  • Jess
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    Okay, I am adding a bread maker to my wish list! I feel like it would make the whole process so much easier : )

    The bread looks fab!!!

    • Teri
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      I’ve never used a real bread maker, but I do love my Bosch mixer! It does the hard work for me (kneading) and I don’t mind the rest. 🙂

  • Tyler Ramey
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    We share the Garmin!!!! Don’t you just love him/her?!

    • Teri
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      LOVE her. 🙂

  • whitney
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    I am going to try this! Do you have any smoothie flaxseed recipes that are yummy??

    • Teri
      at

      I throw ground flaxseed into EVERYTHING and every kind of smoothie since it doesn’t change the taste, but I’ll put up a couple recipes of my favorite smoothies soon. Love ya girl!

  • [email protected]
    at

    omg… I am drooling!!! I need to get all the fancy equipment you used first!

    • Teri
      at

      You could definitely make this by hand! You don’t have to have a mixer.

  • katherine
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    Hi Teri, I found your blog while searching for bread recipes and I just made your whole wheat flax bread. I had a slice for dessert tonight with PB&J and I wanted to say THANK YOU!! Thank you for inspiring me to get over my fear of bread making without a machine. Thank you for providing great photos to go along with the recipe. And, most importantly, thank you for sharing such an awesome bread recipe on your site. I’ll be writing a post soon about the experience and I know I’ll be back to try out some of your other recipes soon. Thanks again!
    .-= katherine´s last blog ..Hello world! =-.

    • Teri
      at

      You are welcome! I’m so happy you liked it!!

  • Matt
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    I don’t have a bread mixer, but I would still like to make this. Do you think it would work if I mixed it by hand?

    • Teri
      at

      Oh definitely. This is a great bread recipe to do by hand since it doesn’t require kneading. I would use a very large bowl to mix it in, and use a wooden spoon, mixing well until it all comes together away from the sides of the bowl. Let it rise in that bowl and then dump it on the counter and knead it just a couple times to make sure it’s all incorporated together. Let me know if you have any specific questions!

  • Matt
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    Thanks! I am going to make it this week 🙂

    • Teri
      at

      Awesome, let me know how it turns out. I’m making some right now! 🙂

  • Erika @ Food, Fitness, & Fun
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    Thanks for the recipe! You have a wonderful blog and you better believe I will be making this bread soon. Yum! 😉

  • meredith
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    i just made this and it is absolutely delicious. it came out perfectly and i was so excited to have a successful first attempt at baking break. thank you so much for a wonderful recipe!

    • Teri
      at

      oh yay!! I’m so glad you liked it and that it came out well!

  • Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)
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    Really interesting to know that the flour has made a difference! I have the King Arthur whole grain baking cookbook and it explains that their flours are significantly higher in gluten than most other brands of flour out there. I almost always use theirs for this reason!

  • Crys
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    Thanks so much for the recipe! This is the first homemade bread I have ever made-and it’s delicious. :o)

  • Christina
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    I made these this past weekend. Yes, these are simply amazing, as are you for posting this no fail recipe.

  • Kim
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    Oh my!! I have been on a hunt….and I do mean an obsessive HUNT for a 100% whole wheat bread (preferrably with flaxseed) recipe! I can’t believe I stumbled upon your recipe. I am {speachless} excited to try this recipe! Thank you Teri!

  • Alexis
    at

    hello i had a question after the dough rises the first time. I mixed it to get it to come down, then i felt it and it was still tacky! It was very hard to roll it since it stuck to every crevice on my hands. Is it supposed to do that? What did I do wrong?

  • K M H
    at

    I have never before ever written a comment about a recipe but I had to come back and tell you thank you for this awesome recipe. This is absolutely the best wheat bread I have ever tasted and it is the absolutely easiest to make. I used a bowl and a wooden spoon and did everything as you outlined and this came out perfectly. I did not knead it before the first rise, but when I turned it out on the floured surface I kneaded briefly maybe for a minute. By the way I added some shredded coconut (about half a cup).I encourage everyone to absolutely try this bread, this will become your go to bread for every single time. Thank you so much for this recipe and I am thrilled I found your site.

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]
      at

      Thank you for leaving a comment! I love hearing when people enjoy the recipes I post. 🙂 And so glad you love this!

  • Lindsey Pfeifer
    at

    I know this is an old post, but just wanted to drop you a line to say thank you for this recipe! I gave it a try today and it is the best bread I’ve had in a LONG time. I’m getting started with baking my own bread and this is my new favorite recipe.

  • Christeen
    at

    This bread is so good! I’ve been making it for about a month now, except last weekend when I decided to be lazy and bought store bought bread. It literally tasted like cardboard after making this bread for so long! Thanks for sharing!

  • maria
    at

    Thanks so much for this recipe — I loved it.

    I’m on a strict 1-tbsp-of-ground-flax-per-day regimen, and I tested this recipe to see if it’d do. Wow, it’s great – slices are dense but not overwhelmingly healthy.

    I made these individualizations – in a double batch, I tripled the amount of ground flax meal (3 whole cups!) and did an equal decrease in King Arthur whole wheat flour. I also added an entire 12-oz bag of Craisins, and doubled the salt to give it a slightly salty-sweet dynamic. So glad I did this – I love the little cranberry bites.

    Thanks again for the great recipe.

    • Teri [a foodie stays fit]
      at

      Thank you for letting me know you enjoyed it! I’m so glad! your tweaks sounds delicious!

      Do you mind sharing why you’re on a strict 1 T of flax per day regiment? I’m just curious!