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Light Whole Wheat Bread recipe

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This is a no-knead recipe that works great. The recipe is 15% whole wheat.

I usually make the two pound recipe. I measure the flour by weight so the recipe is consistent. It is important the food grade plastic bucket have a hole in the top or the lid is slightly ajar for the first day. Use it over the next two weeks.

I highly recommend using a scale to measure the salt and flour. Salt, to account for variances in types and flour since volume measurement is too inaccurate (scoop into measuring dependent, humidity, density, ...).


two 1 pound loaves


four 1 pound loaves


make dough

Yeast should be at room temperature.

In bucket or stand mixer (paddle attachment), mix  together whole wheat flour, white flour, salt, yeast, thyme, rosemary.

Pour water into bucket (or slowly into stand mixer bowl) and mix until uniformly moist. The dough should be very moist.

If using stand mixer, let rise in bowl or transfer to plastic bucket and let rise.

Cover, but leave crack (or drill small (1/16") hole in top) so gases can escape. Let rise two hours at room temperature or until bread has risen then collapsed, then refrigerate overnight. Do not punch down the dough.

 The dough is much easier to handle after it has been refrigerated. The longer it refrigerates, the better tasting it gets.

use dough

Dust the top of the dough lightly with flour then cut off (use kitchen shears as this avoids tearing the gluten strands) 1 pound (grapefruit size) and shape into boule.

Place on parchment paper or cornmeal-covered peel or baking pan. Cover w/paper (so it does not form a crust) and let rise on the peel 90 minutes. It will spread out and rise a bit.

 OR shape and let rise in fridge up to 14 hrs, take out, slash, put on preheated stone.

Preheat oven at 450 deg for 30 minutes with baking stone on middle rack.

Just before baking, slash dough  a few times, 1/4 inch deep, with sharp or serrated knife. Slide dough on baking stone. I use a spatula to coax it on the stone.  For a crisp crust, put 1 cup water in preheated metal tray (not glass) on bottom rack (at least 5 inches from stone) so the stone does not crack. You can fill the pan with river rock for better steam.

Bake 30 to 35 minutes. take out and place on cooling rack. If parchment used, peel it off after 20 minutes in the oven so the bottom can crisp up. Let the bread cool at least an hour or two before cutting into it or else it will end up dense and doughy.

After cutting off a piece to eat, put cut side down to temporarily store.

Doug's Notes

I tried putting the dough directly in the refrigerator (skipping the 2 hour room temp rising). The dough did not rise as much and the crumb was denser. Still tasted great.

You can bake the dough directly on a baking sheet though it won't have as much oven spring.

The dusting of the dough with flour is important as it creates a gluten coat over the dough.

Slashing the dough is important as it lets out gases during baking and prevents the dough from taking an odd shape.

Unbleached flour contains more protein than bleached flour.

You can use less yeast (up to 50% less) but it will take longer to rise.

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