Dutch Oven Whole Wheat Bread Recipe

Have you ever wanted to bake your own whole wheat bread? Well you're in luck: This no-knead recipe requires only a few minutes of hands-on work. Instead of endlessly kneading or getting out your clunky stand mixer, you can simply stir the ingredients together and let the dough sit. It can be prepped the night before, allowing the loaf to rise overnight. After only 40 minutes in the oven, you will have fresh whole wheat bread.

Recipe developer and health coach Miriam Hahn notes that "one of the best things about this bread is how versatile it is. It makes a delicious breakfast bread with butter, jam, or honey. It also pairs well with any type of dinner meal and can be used for sandwiches." It truly is a multi-faceted bread. Even though it stays fresh for only 3 days or so, you will likely be able to use it up before it goes stale. But if you're worried, simply toss the leftovers in the freezer to save for later use.

Gather your ingredients for this whole wheat bread

To make this Dutch oven whole wheat bread, you must start by gathering your ingredients. For this recipe, you will need bread flour, whole wheat flour, salt, active dry yeast, water, and molasses. Hahn loves including molasses as "it adds a little sweetness, a hint of spice, and a touch of savory — all very complementary to wheat bread without overpowering it." It also helps contribute to wheat bread's brown hue. 

Mix the dough

First, add both flours, salt, and yeast into a large bowl. Combine these dry ingredients until they are thoroughly combined. Then add the water and molasses. Stir this all together with a Danish whisk or a wooden spoon. Hahn tells us that "a Danish whisk is similar to a standard whisk, but constructed differently. It consists of three differently sized coils stacked around each other, designed to cut through dough without over-mixing or getting stuck. It is not necessary when making this bread, but if you make different types of bread frequently, it is super handy to have — no wasted dough left in the whisk!"

Let the dough rise

Now, cover the bowl of dough tightly with plastic wrap, then let the dough sit for 12 to 18 hours. This will allow the dough to rise. Many recipes that call for a long rise say to put the dough in the fridge, but as we're only using a small amount of yeast and no perishable ingredients, keeping it at room temperature is not a problem.

Place dough in Dutch oven and bake

Hahn loves using a Dutch oven to make this bread because it "traps the steam and helps the bread rise to perfection. It also keeps the crust on the softer side while cooking, so the bread can fully expand." 

To start the baking process, set a lid-covered Dutch oven in the oven and preheat it to 475 F. As the oven heats, so will the Dutch oven. Meanwhile, add 2 tablespoons of bread flour to the dough ball. Remove it from the bowl and shape it into a round loaf, adding the remaining 2 tablespoons of the reserved flour as you go. Place the dough ball on a piece of parchment paper. Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven, remove the lid, and place the dough (as well as the parchment paper it's sitting on) into the preheated Dutch oven. Cover it, toss it back in the oven, and bake for 30 minutes. Then remove the lid and continue baking for 10 more minutes, until the outside gets golden and crispy.

You're almost done! Once the bread's out of the oven, just let it rest for a bit before slicing.

Dutch Oven Whole Wheat Bread Recipe
4.3 from 4 ratings
Have you ever wanted to bake your own whole wheat bread? Well you're in luck: This no-knead recipe requires only a few minutes of hands-on work.
Prep Time
12
hours
Cook Time
40
minutes
Servings
8
Servings
whole wheat bread loaf on cooling rack
Total time: 12.67 hours
Ingredients
  • 2 ¼ cup bread flour, divided
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 2 cups room temperature water
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
Directions
  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups bread flour, the whole wheat flour, salt, and yeast. Once those are mixed, add the water and molasses. Stir with a wooden spoon or Danish whisk to fully mix.
  2. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and leave it on the counter for 12 to 18 hours.
  3. After the rising period, place a large Dutch oven (with the lid on) in the oven and preheat to 475 F.
  4. Remove the plastic wrap from the bowl and add 2 tablespoons of the remaining bread flour to the dough. Shape the dough into a ball, adding in the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour as you go. Place it on a piece of parchment paper.
  5. Remove the pot from oven, uncover it, and drop in the ball of dough along with the parchment paper. Put the lid on and place the Dutch oven back in the oven.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the lid and bake for 10 more minutes. It should develop a golden brown crust after removing the cover.
  7. Remove the bread from the Dutch oven and place the loaf on a cooling rack for at least 30 minutes before slicing.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 258
Total Fat 1.4 g
Saturated Fat 0.2 g
Trans Fat 0.0
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 53.6 g
Dietary Fiber 4.2 g
Total Sugars 4.2 g
Sodium 296.6 mg
Protein 8.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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