This no knead whole wheat bread is an easy bread recipe! No overnight rising, and no kneading. It’s a hearty, crusty loaf that’s perfect with soups and stews, and it makes great sandwiches! No one will ever know it didn’t come from a bakery – follow my Pro Tips for the perfect crusty loaf!
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I don’t know about you but the one thing I’ve been doing more than anything lately is baking bread!! The current health crisis is keeping many of us in our kitchens a lot more than usual (me included!) and baking homemade bread is a great way to keep yourself from going to the supermarket more than you need to.
This No Knead Whole Wheat Bread is one of our family’s favourite homemade bread recipes – it’s healthy and wholesome and you’re going to LOVE it!
No Knead Bread Variations
Back in 2015, when I first started The Busy Baker, I shared this Easy No Knead Artisan Bread recipe with you and it’s been a HUGE hit with my readers.
There are plenty of other no knead bread variations, and with plenty of flavour options as well!
I have no knead bread recipes to make loaves of Cinnamon Raisin Bread and Cranberry Honey Walnut Artisan Bread. One of my favourite things about my first recipe is how easy it is to customize and adapt to your family’s tastes and even your schedule.
This whole wheat bread recipe is a version of that original recipe, but it doesn’t require the same 12-18 hour rise time. As a result, it’s MUCH faster and even easier to make!
It’s a classic, healthy and wholesome recipe, and if you follow my pro tips below, you’ll be able to make this gorgeous loaf of bread at home in your own kitchen too!
Best Equipment for Making Bread
Pro tip#1: Pre-heat your Dutch Oven pot before baking. This bread is baked in an oven-safe Dutch Oven pot which traps in steam, making the crust of the loaf extra crispy. Pre-heating the pot before baking helps make the crust even more crispy and golden brown!
If you’re looking for a great Dutch Oven pot, I will tell you that it’s one of the best investments you can ever make for your kitchen.
Mine is a total beauty from Le Creuset (affiliate link) and I use it at least weekly throughout the entire year for soups, stews, sauces, curries, and of course for baking bread (if you want my original Dutch Oven Crusty Bread recipe, find it HERE!).
A pot like this one is definitely a financial investment for your kitchen, but considering how much I use mine and considering its high quality, it’s definitely a worthy investment.
I’ve also used similar cast iron pots from other brands, like THIS ONE from KitchenAid and THIS ONE from Lodge Cast Iron (both affiliate links) if you’re looking for something a little less expensive but still high quality that will work just as well.
I’ll be honest though, for the first several years I made this bread I didn’t own a cast iron dutch oven and so I used the only covered oven-safe pot I had: my black turkey roaster!!
You wouldn’t believe how AMAZING my bread turned out in a simple covered turkey roasting pan, and if you want to get your hands on one of the cheapest pots for baking your own crusty bread at home, THIS PAN is all you need (affiliate link)!
Pro Tips for Making No Knead Whole Wheat Bread
Pro Tip #2: Measure your flour properly!
One of the biggest mistakes people make when baking is in how they measure flour. To measure flour correctly for bread-making, aerate the flour by tossing it with a spoon or measuring cup in the bag or container to “fluff it up”. This prevents it from becoming too densely packed.
Scoop your flour very gently with a dry measuring cup, making sure it’s nice and fluffy and rounded at the top.
If you scoop too harshly the flour will become packed into the measuring cup, adding more flour than is needed. Simply use the flat side of a butter knife and scrape off the excess flour, levelling out the top (scrape across the top of the measuring cup to level it out).
Pro Tip #3: Shape your loaf firmly but gently and dust the top of the loaf with flour.
Creating a round shape will help the loaf bake evenly and dusting the top with flour will create that gorgeous, bakery-style appearance that everyone loves!
Pro Tip #4: Let the loaf cool completely before cutting into it!!
Resist the urge to slice the bread while it’s hot. Did you know that after removing a loaf of bread from the oven it continues to bake inside as it cools?? Slicing into this gorgeous loaf too early will cause the inside of the loaf to be under-cooked and gummy.
Letting the loaf cool completely before slicing ensures the perfect fluffy texture when you slice into it!
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I hope you love this whole wheat bread recipe as much as we do! Let me know in the comments below, what’s your favourite kind of homemade bread? I’d love to know!
KITCHEN PRODUCTS I RECOMMEND:
Other Homemade Bread Recipes
Looking for even more delicious bread to bake? You’ll LOVE these:
- Garlic Butter Dinner Rolls
- Healthier Cornbread
- Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins
- Easy No Knead Artisan Bread
- Easy No Knead Cinnamon Raisin Artisan Bread
- No Knead Honey Cranberry Walnut Artisan Bread
No Knead Whole Wheat Bread
- 4 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups warm water
- more flour for shaping the loaf
- Start with a large bowl and a wooden spoon, and add your flour to the bowl. Measure the yeast and add it to one side of the bowl. Measure the salt and add it to the other side.
- Using a wooden spoon, stir the yeast into the flour on its side of the bowl first and then stir the salt into the flour on its side of the bowl. This will prevent the salt mixing directly with the yeast. Give the whole mixture a few good stirs to make sure everything is combined.
- Measure the water. Make sure the water is at room temperature; water that is too warm or too cold can kill the yeast and prevent the bread from rising at all.
- Pour the water in and stir with a wooden spoon. The dough will be rough and a bit sticky, but that's normal.
- Stir until all the flour is combined. This is not normal bread dough (there's no kneading involved in this recipe), so you don't need to be too concerned about the appearance of the dough at this point. Just make sure the ingredients are combined well.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. It's a good idea to ensure there's adequate space left in the bowl for the dough to at least double in size. Place the bowl in a warm, draft-free place and let it rise for about 1 and a half to 2 hours.
- After the dough has risen, preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Place your Dutch oven with the lid on in the cold oven and let it heat up with the oven. If your dutch oven is black on the inside, set your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit instead of 450.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on the counter and dust it with flour. Rub flour on your hands and scrape the dough away from the sides of the bowl, gathering it in your hands as best you can (it may feel kind of strange and not at all like regular bread dough) and forming it into a circular loaf on the parchment paper. Don't worry if it still looks a little rough in places. This lends to the rustic look of this loaf.
- Once you have it shaped, the dough needs to undergo a short second rise. The goal is to handle the dough as little as possible at this stage because any amount of tugging at the rough can cause it to deflate after it has undergone its second rise. The next few steps will help prevent this. But don't worry if it deflates a bit. This bread dough is pretty forgiving.
- Sprinkle flour over the top of the loaf and loosely cover it with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel. The flour you sprinkle on top also prevents the plastic wrap or towel from sticking to the dough so when you take it off at the end of the rise, it doesn't disturb the dough and wreck the rustic shape you've created. Let the dough rise for about 30 minutes. Your oven will also be preheating during this time (and so will your pot).
- Remove the preheated pot from the oven and transfer the dough into the pot as carefully as possible by handling only the parchment paper. Place the lid on the pot and return it to the oven for 30 minutes. Don't open the oven during this time, and certainly don't take the lid off the pot; the crispness of the crust develops because of the steam that builds up in the pot during this 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes have passed, remove the lid from the pot and continue baking for another 10 minutes. After the 10 minutes have passed, remove the pot with bread from the oven and place the bread on a wire rack to cool. You'll probably hear it crackling as it cools - this is normal.
- If you can, resist the urge to cut into the bread until it has pretty much cooled completely. The bread continues to bake on the inside even after it has been removed from the oven and cutting it too early could result in the inside becoming gummy or rubbery.