Arriving at our home with a loaf of squishy Sara Lee, I knew it was time to transition my niece into home-baked bread. Not surprisingly, she loved it – everything from kneading the dough, to seeing it rise beyond the confines of the loaf pan, to slathering it with peanut butter fresh from the oven. Fortunately for me, she prefers whole grain flavor to nutrition-less white, so this honey wheat sandwich bread has become a weekly staple.
This honey wheat sandwich bread is definitely fun to make with kids of all ages. They can help mix and knead the dough (we do it all by hand – no mixer or bread maker required!), shape it into a loaf, and be amazed as it rises. Since my niece is a teen, she’s even taken over baking this honey wheat sandwich bread by herself, from start to finish. I get to enjoy slices of it slathered with nut butter, but for her, it’s all about making the best lunchtime sandwiches.
Special Diet Notes: Honey Wheat Sandwich Bread
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, and vegetarian.
For vegan wheat sandwich bread, forgo the “honey” part and use an equivalent amount of maple syrup or agave nectar in its place. Easy peasy and equally delicious!
- 1¼ cups lukewarm original or unsweetened almond milk (or plain milk alternative of your choice)
- 2¼ teaspoons instant yeast
- ¼ cup rice bran oil or other neutral-tasting oil
- ¼ cup honey (can sub agave nectaror maple syrup for vegan)
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 2 cups whole wheat flour (can use white-wheat flour, which is also whole grain)
- 1½ cups bread flour (see note below for 100% whole wheat option)
- Pour the milk alternative into a mixing bowl and add the yeast. Allow the yeast to “proof” for 5 minutes. It should foam a bit if still active.
- Stir in the oil, honey, salt, and wheat flour, until well combined.
- Gradually add the bread flour, and when it gets too difficult to stir, start kneading the dough with your hands. Knead until it is smooth and elastic.If the dough is too dry, add a splash or two of milk alternative, if it is still too sticky, add a little more flour. It should feel slightly sticky to the touch, but not actually stick to your hands as you knead.
- Transfer the dough to a large bowl, cover lightly with a lid, damp towel or plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm, draft-free spot for 1 hour.
- Grease and flour an 8x4-inch loaf pan.
- Punch the dough to get the air out (The fun part). Roll dough into a loaf shape to fit in your prepared pan, place it in the pan and cover lightly with a damp towel or plastic wrap, and let it rise for another 30 to 60 minutes, or until it is peaking out over the pan and looks like a loaf of bread.
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Bake the bread for 35 to 40 minutes or until the top is a nice golden brown.
- Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes in the loaf pan, before popping it out to cool completely on a wire rack.