This bread is so easy, you can make it with one hand tied behind your back

I have a friend, Karen, who’s a CPA. And at this time of the year, she’s a very, very, VERY busy CPA. Tax season is her yearly Olympic marathon, Indianapolis 500, and Ironman Triathlon—all rolled into one (and please excuse the mixed sports metaphors.)

Karen came to my house for a party last Saturday night, having worked all day on tax stuff. All those 1090-S, W-4, 1099-MISC forms make me want to run and hide my head in the sand… which is why I give my taxes to Karen to figure out. It’s one of my biggest annual self-indulgences—to NOT have to sweat bullets over governmental bureaucracy at its best/worst.

So Karen comes through the front door followed by her husband, Terry, toting a baguette and artichoke dip, their contribution to the potluck.

“Karen, I can’t believe you had time to make this…” I begin.

“Oh, no,” she cuts me off. “It’s a King Arthur Bakery baguette, and Terry made the dip. With my recipe.”

“BUT—” And she pauses, her eyes brightening. “I’ve been making that no-knead 100% whole wheat bread every week. I DO have time for that. It’s so easy, and SO good!”

I draw a blank on the recipe Karen mentions, having been immersed lately in no-knead pizza crust, Harvest Bread, and other no-knead treats. (No-knead sticky buns, anyone? Ah-ha, piqued your interest. Coming sometime to a blog near you…)

Then I remember—oh, THAT no-knead bread—the one from our 2006 Whole Grain Baking cookbook. Which means we were working on the recipes for the book in 2005. Were we ahead of this no-knead curve, or what?!

Or course, after Karen reminds me of the bread, I have to make it first thing Monday morning. It comes out beautifully—moist, tasty, and NO KNEADING REQUIRED. Now I’m anxious to resurrect this recipe and share it with as many folks as possible.

Hey, kids—let’s write a blog!

And here it is: No-Knead 100% Whole Wheat Bread.


Let’s begin with my favorite whole wheat flour, perfect for yeast bread: King Arthur 100% Organic White Whole Wheat Flour. For some reason, yeast seems to love the extra something in organic flour, because bread made with this flour always rises higher. Even though it’s 100% whole wheat, you can still get a very nice rise out of it.


Add water, orange juice, melted butter or oil, your choice of syrup: molasses, maple, honey… I actually prefer brown sugar corn syrup. Mix to make a wet dough.


Beat for 3 minutes at high speed in a stand mixer, using the flat beater. Alternatively, you can knead this in the bread machine for 15 minutes or so. In which case it’s no longer “no-knead” bread, but is still fairly effortless.


OK, if you’ve already heard this rant about how the size of your bread pan matters, scroll down. If not, read on. The standard-size loaf pan for yeast breads measures 8 1/2” x 4 1/2”, inside/top dimensions. Just so I’m perfectly clear, here’s 4 1/2”…


…and here’s 8 1/2”. If you measure your pan and find it’s 9” x 5”, that makes it 30% larger than an 8 1/2” x 4 1/2” pan—believe it or not. If you use a 9” x 5” pan in a recipe calling for the smaller, standard pan, your bread won’t rise as high, nor dome as nicely. Caveat emptor.


Grease your 8 1/2” x 4 1/2” pan thoroughly. (Yes, this pan is old, beat up, and has produced many, MANY loaves of delicious bread. It’s one of our original Chicago Metallic pans. We were a  bit uneasy showing such an “ugly” pan in public, but to me, it simply looks well-used… and well-loved.)

Anyway, back to greasing your pan. A light spritz with your non-stick vegetable oil spray isn’t enough; you need to really lay it on here, as this bread dough is wet and tends to stick. We all use Everbake spray here in the test kitchen, as it doesn’t leave a sticky, dark residue on your baking sheets like other sprays do. Plus it comes in a nice, big can—more bang for your buck.


Scoop the wet dough into the pan. Use your wet fingers to gently press it to the edges of the pan.


Cover with your favorite pan cover; mine’s a shower cap.


Let rise till the bread is just barely crowning over the rim of the pan, about 60 to 90 minutes.


Place it in a preheated 350°F oven, and bake.


Notice how nicely the top smooths out as the bread bakes.


Is it done? Your instant-read thermometer reveals the loaf’s inner secret: 191°F. Since the range for this bread is 190°F to 195°F, yes, it’s done.


Remove it from the oven, cool, slice, and butter. Or peanut butter.


Now, didn’t I tell you this bread was so easy, you could make it with one hand tied behind your back? I currently have one hand tied (in front) due to shoulder surgery. No-knead bread made with my left hand (and I’m a right-hander)? Not a problem!

Buy vs. Bake

Buy: Fiber One 100% Whole Wheat Bread, 24-ounce loaf, $3.99; 17¢/ounce

Bake at home: No-Knead 100% Whole Wheat Bread, 28-ounce loaf, $2.05; 7¢/ounce

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


    1. Pinkoo

      Hi, I followed the recipes perfectly. Used whole wheat flour, but it turned into a hard dough. It was not sticky. . Had to add half cup of milk and water to make it soft. The dough did rise well but am surprised no one found liquid less. What did I do wrong . Please tell

    2. The Baker's Hotline

      Dear Pinkoo, it sounds like you didn’t do anything wrong, but rather intuitively knew to correct the dough with extra liquid to make a soft, sticky dough.~Jaydl@KAF

  1. Faith

    Can I use something besides dry milk? It’s not safe for me to eat. If you remember the formula that 1/4 cup powdered milk + 1 cup of water= 1 cup of liquid milk, that makes it easy to substitute the type of milk you use such as rice, soy, nut, hemp etc. Just put in 1 cup of your “milk” for the water and omit the powdered milk. Mary @ KAF</b.

  2. Sue

    Wow! You’re dedicated! Frankly I’m more impressed that you could blog about the bread than bake it! Photos, typing etc!?

    Someone should make you some PB toast, and a cup of tea and you should take it easy and heal! Shoulder surgery is a big deal!

    Get well!

  3. Sara

    I definitely want to try this one. In lieu of a stand mixer or a bread machine, can I use my hand mixer, either with the dough hooks or the regular beaters, to beat the dough for 3 minutes before panning?

    Absolutely, Sara – Use the beaters, and if it seems to put to much strain on the mixer, switch to the dough hooks. I’m sure that’ll work just fine. PJH

  4. Claire in France

    This no-kneading bread follows the same principle as your “English Muffin Toasting Bread”, which I have enjoyed making since Christmas last year.
    I’ll definitely try this healthy version! Merci!

  5. Janet T

    I’m looking forward to making this bread. I read the online recipe and there seems to be a difference in the final bread temperature. The recipe calls for it to be at 195 degrees: “Most breads are done when their interior temperature registers 190°F. Why do we bake this one to 195°F? Because breads that start with an ultra-moist dough (and yield a moist loaf) need to bake to a slightly higher temperature to avoid gumminess.” Please clarify for me. Thanks for such a great site!!

    Hi Janet – Guess I’d better change those temperatures to match, huh? I like it at 195°F, so go with that. Thanks for your kind words… PJH

  6. Becky Myers

    Can you put this in your Zoji and make it that way?

    Probably – haven’t tried it. Give it a try, Becky, let us know – PJH

  7. Lesley

    I’m feeling a little slow here – if you can substitute milk for water and dry milk powder why wouldn’t the recipe call for milk in the first place? Is dry milk better? Can you explain what the difference would be?

    Well, dry milk is better for those using a bread machine set who want to use a delayed start. And our Baker’s Special dry milk makes yeast bread rise higher, as it has a certain yeast-inhibiting enzyme disabled. You can use liquid milk, but for best results would have to bring it to a bare simmer first, in order to disable that enzyme. So dry milk is simply easier…

  8. Deb

    PJ, you are a hoot. Thanks for the awesome blog/flour/knowledge transfer. You all at KAF are the best.


    We aim to please, Deb. And even with one arm, my aim is pretty good! PJH

  9. bakingblonde

    That looks wonderful. There is nothing better than fresh baked bread, oh man I wish I had some for breakfast!

    Start now – you’ll be done by midnight. Or get up early? Depends if you’re a night-owl or an early bird, I guess… PJH

  10. Kathleen

    What is brown sugar corn syrup? I hope you are resting and taking care of yourself. Please do not over do. I may be new here but all of your fellow bakers (customers or whatever we are called) care about you. I’m sending love and prayers your way. Thank you for teaching me how to make bread and lots of other goodies. Kathleen

    Thanks so much, Kathleen… I’m kind of resting but mostly baking! I’m so glad you’re learning to bake bread – it’s a lifetime skill that those around you will always appreciate. Brown sugar corn syrup is Karo’s new syrup – it looks like a dark golden syrup, not light corn syrup, not dark corn syrup, but something in between, and tasting beautifully of brown sugar. Karo tried it out a few years ago, and it disappeared; I figured it didn’t fly. But now it’s in our grocery stores here again, so I’m thinking maybe they resurrected it? Take a look at the supermarket in the aisle where they have the other corn syrups, you might see it. And thanks again for your kind words – PJH

  11. SimplePleasure

    Hi! PJ,

    Just wondering what does the Orange Juice do for this bread? Will it taste orangy? Can I use all milk instead? Or all water?

    Hi – OJ tempers the sometimes tannic flavor of whole wheat. Sure, use milk or water – the ww flavor might be stronger/more astringent, that’s all. PJH

  12. breadchick

    PJ, I was going to take you up on the challenge and have someone tie one of my hands behind my back and make this bread and then blog about it.

    But you’ve beaten me to the punch!

    I’m still making the bread though 🙂

    Hope your healing well.

    Well, it might be tough with BOTH hands tied behind your back… brings to mind stirring with a spoon held in your teeth! Thanks, I’m healing steadily, and will be glad when 5 weeks is over so I can drive again – GRRRR… PJH

  13. Sarah

    I thought I read somewhere that milk that had been pasteurized had been heated enough to to kill the enzyme – is this not true?

    Apparently not, Sarah – see answer to Dan’s comment below. PJH

  14. Dan

    ” yeast-inhibiting enzyme . . . [ in ] liquid milk, but for best results would have to bring it to a bare simmer first, in order to disable that enzyme. ”

    Have I read that the enzyme is disabled in [all] pasteurized milk ?

    Dan, from what I read – and there’s a level of disagreement among different food science sites – pasteurization isn’t done at a high enough temperature (up to 161°F) to disable protease; the milk needs to be scalded (brought just about to 212°F) for the protease to be disabled. PJH

  15. Melody

    Holy moly, that looks delicious. Plus, I got, like, 10 other fabulous baking tips from this post. Shower cap as a pan cover? Genius! Thanks for sharing.

    Yeah, Melody, don’t you love that shower cap tip? I use it for loaf pans, round cake pans, two loaf pans side by side – even a 9″ x 13″ pan, once the cap gets a little stretched out… On another note, I thought I was the only one left who still said “Holy moly…” 🙂 PJH

  16. Jeanna

    This may be a too-simple question, but how do you clean the shower cap afterwards? Just a rinse with soapy water, or something different? That is such a fantastic idea. I have the bread rising as I type, can’t wait to try it!

    I don’t clean it, Jeanna. It doesn’t touch the dough, I don’t grease it, and at most it gets a thin film of moisture on the inside from the dough. If I ever do need to wash it (say, the bread over-rises and gloms up against it and sticks), I just rinse in warm water. If it’s greasy, I rinse in warm, soapy water. And when it falls apart, I break out a new one – someone around here is always traveling, and I make sure whoever goes on the road brings back the shower caps! PJH

    1. Janice

      You can get a package of the lightweight shower caps at a very reasonable ( cheap) price at a beauty supply store. Beauticians use them all the time when doing hair coloring. These are great for all kinds of dirty chores around the house or yard also. Wouldn’t be without them. And now I can add making bread to that list. Loved your bread recipe.

  17. Vicki

    Do you spray/grease the inside of the shower cap? I know that most recipes that call for covering with plastic wrap say grease it first. I wondered if the shower cap stays “poofed” up enough you could get away without greasing it.

    Exactly right, Vicki, the shower cap poofs up and never touches the rising loaf. That’s why it’s so useful… PJH

  18. Janet T

    I have been using those plastic shower caps for years in the kitchen. They make better bowl covers than plastic wrap for a lot of things. I buy disposable ones at the local beauty supply. I think I paid about nine dollars for 100 the last time. Could probably shop around for a better price, but I’m already there getting my “cover the gray” supplies . 😉
    Thanks for the science lesson, too. Interesting stuff.

  19. Barb

    Is that one of those Metro silicone paddles? I was looking at them for my new mixer but I’m afraid it will void the warranty on the mixer. I have a Pro 600 Kitchenaid and wouldn’t want to mess it up as I’ve only had it a few months.

    Wait it out, Barb – I have the feeling KitchenAid will be coming out with their own version of this good idea soon… PJH

  20. Nancy Byrne

    I just wanted to add my 2 cents to the question about needing to scald milk, if you use it instead of water and milk powder. I checked with my husband who is in the milk processing business, to make sure I had my facts right. They heat milk to 171-172* to pasteurize it. But in order to make buttermilk, they have to heat it to 190-195*, by which point the proteins are de-natured. So I would say that scalding the milk would achieve the desired results. Milk that is ultra-pasteurized (the products that have a long shelf life) has been heated to 290*.

    By the way, I love this blog! It is the first place I visit every morning when I turn on the computer. I enjoy all of your descriptions and photos of the trials and tribulations of trying out new recipes. The most fun for me comes from baking often and sharing the goods with family and friends who really seem to appreciate them.

    Nancy, thanks for this update from an expert – we appreciate it. So regular milk does need to be scalded to disable protease; ultra-pasteurized cream (or of you can find ultra-pasteurized milk) doesn’t. And dry milk doesn’t – or at least the dry milk we sell, not sure about regular dry milk… And thanks for your kind comments. Another blog will be posted tomorrow morning… PJH

  21. Alyce

    PJh you are hoot! I have a bad wing myself (left side) and was just given a bunch of shower caps by hair dresser. (way too long of a story). I am off to make one handed bread! As always, everyone at KA is great. I love this site and the stories. Hope you feel better soon.

    Thanks, Alyce – Hope your bread came out great! PJH

  22. Denise

    Can Agave nectar be used for this recip instead of the molasses, maple syrup, dark corn syrup, or brown sugar corn syrup?

    Can’t wait to try this out!

    Sure, Denise, go for it— PJH

  23. Kay

    I have the opposite pan issue, I have Bakers Secret silicone loaf pans that are 8×4 on the top and 2 1/2 deep.

    For recipes that ask for a 9×5 pan I just spilt the dough in two of my silicone pans and the result is in general perfect.

    What do I do with this one, short of buying new pans….?

    Try the 8″ x 4″, Kay, and let it rise till it’s crowned about 1/2″ over the rim of the pan. Hopefully that’ll work out well. PJH

  24. Holly

    This bread looks great! I hope your shoulder is healing well. I will be making this bread tonight to go with some homemade chicken noodle soup for my sick kiddos. I can definitely feel good about that, so thank you!

    Oh, dear, hope the kids feel better soon, Holly – PJH

  25. AJ

    This may sound like a dumb sort of question, but here goes:
    What do you recommend to slice breads? I use my electric
    knife to slice up my quick breads like beer bread or banana
    bread…would it be just as good for cooled yeast breads?
    I’ve one or two good serrated knives but it’s difficult for
    me to hold down loaves one-handed without mashing
    (yup, I’ve a bad left hand)!

    AJ, serrated knives are always good for bread – I assume your electric knife is serrated. Make sure the bread is completely cool before cutting – if you HAVE to have a warm piece, just tear off a little chunk, rather than cutting, because cutting warm bread mashes it down. So, I’m thinking that serrated knife would be just fine – perfect for one hand, eh? PJH

  26. Jeanne Andersen

    Can olive oil be used for vegetable oil in the no-knead whole wheat bread

    Absolutely, Jeanne – Enjoy. PJH

  27. Barb the wanna be baker

    Good morning! I’ve just finished 2 wonderful toasted pieces of this bread. It has been along time since I’ve done much baking let alone make bread. My daughter is my inspiration for visiting your web site and blog–the pictures and directions are fabulous. Anyway, having the house to myself on Saturday I decided it was time to try this bread. I’m trying to eat healtier, etc. so this was a good start. The bread was fabulous!!! I also had questions about dry milk substitution, as I didn’t have any on hand. As mentioned earlier, just add some extra liquid (I think it was 1 cup milk) and it turned out A OK. The best part was my husband’s utter amazement that I could make such good bread on the 1st try!!

    Barb, you’re no longer a wannabe – you’re now a full-fledged BREAD BAKER! Congrats on your success! PJH

  28. Donna

    I gave up on making 100% whole wheat bread at home years ago–the recipes I tried were so dense and heavy, they weren’t appealing at all. This bread looked so good in the pictures, I decided to give it a try. Well, it’s fantastic! It isn’t light and airy–the loaf weighs in at a pound and a half, and it’s not that tall–but oh, my, does it taste good–very moist and tender crumb. I used maple syrup for the sweetener and white whole wheat flour, as suggested, and half butter, half oil for the fat. I’ll be doing this recipe again and again! I do have to tell you, though–I had just finished reading the April Fool’s Day baking disaster blog before I went into the kitchen to make this bread. Near the end of the rising time, I was distracted, and when I thought to check, it was overflowing the pan and dripping into the stove burner. I just deflated it gently with a silicon scraper and let it rise again before baking (I’d only lost a little of the batter), and it was none the worse! Thanks for another great recipe!

  29. forgottenone

    This recipe calls for the White Whole Grain Flour, but I typically use the brown Whole Grain Flour. Can I subsitute 100%?

    Yes, you may substitute between these 2 flours freely. Frank @ KAF.

  30. Willi


    I made your no-knead whole wheat bread but I had a problem. Everything looked normal through the rise except the dough never develop a crown either at the end of the rise over in the oven. I got an oven spring when I put it in the oven but it never developed the typical crown. The top was flat. What did I do wrong? Any help would be appreciated.


    Bill, I think it turned out as it was supposed to. Bread with this flour/liquid ratio is too wet to develop a crown. it might curve, just barely; but it won’t form the usual nice rainbow, or typical crown. Take a close look at the pictures in the blog – that’s not a high-rising bread. I think you did everything right, except I didn’t manage your expectations effectively. Sorry about that! PJH

  31. Mari


    I made this bread yesterday and it was awesome! It was easy and I can finally say that I can bake bread. I’m definitely making it again after this loaf is gone…
    I also made the No-Knead Harvest Bread today…delicious! can’t wait for the other recipes you’ll be sharing on No-Knead breads next month! Thanks so much for sharing and posting the pics that go with the instructions.


    Good for you, Mari – no-knead sticky buns will make their guest appearance here in early June… PJH

  32. Joy Bennett

    Can I use whole grain flour in plc. of whole wheat flour? Its a whole lot healthier for us.
    Thanks, Joy

    Um, not sure what whole grain flour you’re talking about. You do need wheat to make bread rise, so if you’re trying to go 100% rye or oats or cornmeal or something like that, then the answer would be no, your bread won’t rise. And I think whole wheat flour is pretty healthy, and healthier than some of the other whole grains… am I misunderstanding your question? PJH

  33. nomadfoodie

    I made this bread on Sunday at it was great – very easy. Texture and moistness is similar to my favorite bread (Great Harvest Bread Co’s Honey Whole Wheat), but not as sweet. I did use maple syrup instead of honey, so I’ll be sure to try honey in a future batch. Thanks for the great recipes!

  34. Michael M

    Great recipe! I find that orange juice function interesting. I tried doing some searches to see what other substitutes might have this effect (because I don’t always have orange juice on hand – would lemon juice work?), but I couldn’t find much information. Do you know where I can find that information? Thanks.

    Michael – I don’t think lemon juice would work as well as the orange juice. Lemon juice is acidic and not sweet like orange juice. If you don’t have OJ you could always use water in place of the juice. Elisabeth @ KAF

  35. Lee

    I want to jump in on the milk/dry milk discussion by saying that anymore dairies are using much higher heat in their pastuerization processes (to the detriment of the consumer but that’s another topic) and unless you have access to raw milk or buy milk that is labeled as VAT or Low-heat pasteurized(145 degrees) you are probably getting something that has been heated to 161 or higher (HTST 161 degrees, HHST 191-212 degrees). This is especially true for that ultra-pasteurized garbage. Ultra-pasteurization is a violent process that takes milk from a chilled temperature to above the boiling point (40 degrees to 280 degrees) in less than two seconds. That pretty much disables anything good about the milk including any yeast-inhibitors.

  36. Carissa

    Yum. This bread was a big hit. My husband said it’s the best I’ve made. I’ll be sticking with this as a staple.

  37. Jill

    My friend has been urging me to make this bread for months. I tried it this morning using maple syrup, 1 cup of vanilla rice milk (all I had – there are milk allergies around here) and 1/2 cup of water (no OJ on-hand). The results were fabulous. I took it out of the oven when the inner T was 190 – next time I think I’ll leave it in just a teeny bit longer, the middle was the slightest bit under-done. My kids and I polished off 2/3 of the bread in a matter of minutes… Thanks for yet another fantastic recipe!

    Sounds great, Jill – congrats! PJH

  38. Mari


    just a quick question, I’d like to make this for my Uncle but he’s diabetic.. what do you recommend to substitute the molasses, maple syrup or brown sugar syrup and orange juice with?

    Thanks a mil!

    Just substitute any liquid, Mari – milk or water? You’ll lose the sweetness/flavor, but if your uncle can’t have any added sugar at all, that’s the way you’ll need to go. Although it’s not very sweet, you could try sugar-free maple syrup substitute, if he can have that – PJH

  39. mari

    I’d like to make this for my Uncle but he’s diabetic. Can you suggest a substitution for the molasses or maple syrup or brown sugar corn syrup and the orange juice?


    You might try checking in with the folks at Splenda: or 800-777-5363. The yeast will benefit from some sugar in the dough. I suggest only replacing one to the ingredients with a sugar substitute. Frank @ KAF.

  40. BrianT

    What is the fiber content? I’m trying to find recipes for high fiber, low calorie bread. Something on the order of 10g Fiber / 120 calories per slices. Trying to avoid the man-made fiber substitutes.

    Sadly, not all our recipes have nutritionals – it’s a project we are always working on! In the meantime, there may be a site on-line where you can list the ingredients and servings and have the nutritionals computed for you. Wishing you well in your quest. Irene @ KAF

  41. Brian from Florida

    The bread looks delicious. As a recent South Beach Diet person I was looking for a whole wheat hamburger bun recipe. Is it possible to use this recipe and make buns/rolls from it. I am a fan of baking but am quite a novice. Thanks, for the great detail.

    Good thought, Brian – not sure it would work, but I think it would. Try dolloping dough into English muffin rings or maybe tuna cans with the tops/bottoms cut off, greased? I think you’d need something to hold up the sides of this wet dough, to keep it bun-shaped. You might try our honey-wheat rolls instead, flattened a bit to make them wider/flatter. Have fun – PJH

  42. Susan Champney

    I am new to bread making and have a new KitchenAid Artisan mixer. I was so happy to make this bread recipe yesterday using my new mixer, and I have a couple of questions, please. The recipe calls for “instant yeast” and I used Fleischman’s Bread Machine Yeast in a jar. Is this ok? Would using the bread machine yeast instead of the instant yeast improve the way the bread rises? Also, I used the flat paddle on the mixer to mix the dough for 3 minutes. The recipe calls for an electric mixer; the instruction manual says that usually using my mixer will shorten the mixing time. So, should I have mixed the bread for 1-1/2 minutes with the paddle? Thank you so much. Are there any recipes that include seeds?

    Susan – In this case, where there is only one rise, Bread Machine yeast is fine and I do not believe there would be much difference in the rise if someone were to use instant vs. Bread Machine yeast (rapid rise). Just remember, when there is a recipe requiring more than one rise, instant or active dry is best. Mixing the dough for the full 3 minutes is the way to go if doing by hand. If doing with the mixer, then yes, the time is reduced. A sticky dough is what you are looking for here. Elisabeth @ KAF

  43. Douglas Harp


    Hi again —

    I found the recipe for the no-knead whole wheat bread that I asked about yesterday. It was difficult because it was right under my eyes. (a male thing, I believe) so now i can go out, get the ingredients, and introduce the west coast to this great recipe.

    Thank you,


  44. lc

    thank you for the detailed instructions above (with pics and all). i would like to know if its ok to replace the molasses, maple syrup, dark corn syrup, or brown sugar corn syrup with just brown sugar? if so, how much brown sugar and water would i need? thanks so much for your time.
    Hi Ic,
    You can replace the syrups, etc. with brown sugar easily. There is no need to add additional liquid unless the dough seems dry.
    Happy Baking! ~MaryJane

  45. lc

    thanks for your quick reply mary jane! btw, do you think i would need at least a kitchen aid mixer? or will regular mixer do? sorry for being ignorant, haven’t baked on my own yet. thanks again.
    If you have a hand mixer with dough hooks, it should be just fine.
    Remember, we bakers all started at the beginning too, so don’t ever feel bad about asking questions. ~ MJ

  46. fd Ashford

    I am going to try this recipe. I want to put the dough into a boule-type basket with a floured cloth inside it. Any thoughts? Any cautions? I suppose it might be too sticky to handle in this way, but if I spray oil on the cloth and flour liberally, it just might work. Thanks
    It is always fun to experiment. Because this recipe is a no knead, the dough is quite loose as you can see from the pictures featured in this blog. Therefore, the loaf pan supports the bread while it both rises and bakes. If you were to try this recipe as a boule, once the dough has risen in your basket and flipped over onto a baking sheet to be baked, it may spread into a much flatter loaf. You could try tightening the dough with additional flour during the mixing process. Or hold back on some of the water. I would not use any spray to avoid sticking, just heavily flour your cloth. Good luck! Elisabeth @ KAF

  47. taradiane

    I’m a new bread baker – just made my first loaves yesterday! My dad insisted on wheat bread over white, so I went out late Friday night and bought a bag of the wheat flour with this recipe on the back. I ended up using pure maple syrup over molasses, and olive oil for the fat (weird, right? But it always works so well in desserts, so…why not!) This bread was so amazing! I couldn’t believe how moist it was. I’m hoping it wasn’t just beginner’s luck, because I plan on making this my go-to wheat bread going forward.

    Congratulations – may your bread always rise high! Thanks for sharing – PJH

  48. janetxb

    Recently I’ve stopped eating white flour. Yesterday I made this bread for the first time. I used King Arthur’s regular whole wheat flour, scalded a cup of milk since I didn’t have dry milk powder, and used maple syrup and olive oil for sweetener and fat. It is so very delicious. I’m looking forward to making it regularly. Thank you!

    Good show, Janet – thanks for sharing your results here! PJH

  49. Happy2bake

    So glad to see you still respond to comments/questions over a year after this post. I just made this bread this morning but it was the version from your whole grain cookbook and I just realized that the cookbook completely omits the fat. Definitely like the texture of this over the other no-knead types of bread. Was there a special reason that butter or oil has been added here? Mine turned out great, though definitely more of a dense, moist loaf (might need to let it rise longer?). I made myself do the recipe exactly as written – though I only had your white whole wheat on hand. What an incredible aroma it has! Anyway, should I add the fat the next time or just continue to leave it out? Since you do this all the time, what is your preference and rationale for using fat vs. no fat added? Better with fat? Thanks much!

    I prefer fat in my sandwich/loaf-type breads; no fat in my artisan-style breads: baguettes, and other crusty loaves. Bread with fat will be softer, less chewy, and stay fresher longer. Bread without will be chewier, with a more crusty crust. There’s really no “better” or “worse” – just personal preference. PJH

  50. Laura Cengic

    I made this bread today and am wondering why it fell over the sides of the pan when baking? If I use honey instead of molasses etc., are the measurements the same (3 TBS)?

    Yes, Laura, honey vs. molasses measurements would be the same. It sounds like either your pan was too small; or perhaps your dough was a bit too wet, and the loaf couldn’t hold itself up once it rose to a certain point. Check your pan size against what the recipe calls for, measuring the inside top dimensions; even 1/2″ can make a big difference in capacity. As for the hydration (liquid/flour ratio) – with these kind of very wet no-knead breads, it’s always a big chancy that you get it just right. Follow the photos in the blog, as far as how the dough should look, and how much it should rise, OK? Hope this helps – PJH

  51. Beth Goddard

    Is there something you can substitute for the orange juice? I have all the ingredients except that. What does the orange juice do?

    You can just substitute water, Beth, no problem. The OJ tempers the sometimes tannic flavor of whole wheat; but as I said, water’s fine. Good luck – PJH

  52. Swathi


    I tried this bread, they came out really well .We loved it. I used maple syrup as sweetener. Here is the link if you have some time, take a look at it.

    I always love the way you explain and bake new bread recipes. Next on my agenda is to bake that crusty European style rolls.

    Thanks for sharing this, Swathi – I always like reading your blog, as I’m fascinated with South Asian cooking. and I love your stories that go with the recipes. 🙂 PJH

  53. Indian Home Baker

    Hi!! Tried this one today. I used 2 tablespoons oil, 3 tbsps vital wheat gluten and had to add 3 tablespoons more water to get the dough sticky and loose. Tried using my hand mixer with dough hooks, but the dough crawled up and gave me an electric shock!!!!!!! Used elbow grease, beat with wooden stick, about 200 strokes. Whew!

    The dough rose way over the rim of the 8 1/2 by 4 1/2” pan in about 45 minutes. Too much liquid? But I baked it anyway, for 45 minutes. It turned a very nice golden brown and registered 200 F on my instant read thermometer. Tastes good and moist, but dense. Am I wrong all the way?? HELP!! Would want to bake this again. can I mix part of the flour with liquid and beat with an electric mixer? Then add the rest of the flour? If yes, how long? Thanks in anticipation of your reply!

    Hi – Please call our baker’s hotline, 802-649-3717. With this many questions, it’s best to be able to have a conversation, OK? PJH

  54. Indian Home Baker

    Thank you! Will do! Forgive my ignorance but my 8 1/2” by 4 1/2” tin measures just as you have shown above. But yours only seems much deeper. May I know how much it measures?

    It’s 2 5/8″ deep… PJH

  55. Solemae

    Hi, Could 1 cup buttermilk be used instead of the water and powdered milk combination? I am new to bread making and am glad to find this recipe and blog! thanks!

    Welcome to the wonderful world of bread-baking! Sure, substitute buttermilk for milk; the loaf may raise slightly less high without the Baker’s Special Dry Milk (which is formulated to help yeast grow), but your bread will have nice added tang. Enjoy! PJH

  56. Solemae

    Thanks PJH for being there ! thanks for the help and inspiration ! with it I made my first loaf ! The first time I made it just like the recipe says and came out beautiful! the second time you were right , the buttermilk didn’t rise as high but is still ok. This is so much fun! Now I’m hooked, I really don’t think I will be buying bread again ! my son said the store bought bread had no taste compared to the one I made! it was so easy! I thought I can try that ! I’m so glad to find this website, the products and advice all together, thanks so much, for helping me help my family to be healthier!

  57. Solemae

    Quick question PJH, Do you think this recipe could be doubled so that 2 loaves can bake at the same time? or would it not bake properly? this bread is not going to last around here ! the one I made is gone already! thanks.

    Definitely a candidate for doubling; but don’t double the yeast, OK? Just increase to 1 tablespoon. Enjoy – PJH

  58. sayantani

    Hi I baked this bread yesterday. The dough rose beautifully but there was a problem in baking. I had to bake it for close to 75 minutes. the outside of the bread was beautiful with dark golden crust but the inside was still unde rbaked. this happens for most of my whole wheat breads. can you suggest a way to avoid this.
    If you find the breads are baking on the outside before baking on the inside, you can either lower the oven temperature by 25°F or use a tent of foil over the bread for the last 15 minutes of baking to keep the outside from over browning as the inside finishes. Hope this helps. ~ MaryJane

  59. Solemae

    PJH, I’m making an order friday and am wondering about some of the other baking items offered such as diastatic malt and vital wheat gluten? I googled these and was wondering if these could be used for this recipe or are they for different types of bread ? this recipe comes out beautifully but was wondering about the whole dough enhancer thing. Thanks again in advance!

    Solemae, the diastatic malt really wouldn’t make a lot of difference in this bread; no-knead breads have so much going on, with their high hydration, something subtle like diastatic malt isn’t a big factor. A tablespoon or two of vital wheat gluten, however, would probably help it rise a bit more – if you’re looking for that. Good luck! PJH

  60. Karen

    I only have 9×5 loaf pans. Can you please post the changes necessary to use this recipe in a 9×5 pan.
    A 9” x 5” pan makes it 30% larger than an 8 1/2” x 4 1/2” pan. In result, your bread won’t rise as high, nor dome as nicely. Not a problem for most folks. You can certainly go ahead with the recipe, Karen. Elisabeth

  61. "Vicky "

    Hi All,

    I just love this bread! I have made 6 loafs in the last four weeks. I use vegetable oil not butter and Agave in place of the maple syrup. My first two using the loaf pan, and the last four using my brotform. Not only does the bread taste delicious, but it is now so very “pretty” after using the brotform. I am in the process of baking one now to take to our friends house for dinner tonight. Thank you KAF for sharing such a wonderful, easy, and healthy recipe I would love to share a picture, but was not sure how to upload one. 🙂
    Vicky from Virginia

    Vicky, unfortunately, you can’t load photos into these blog comments (though it’s on our wish list for the future). In the meantime, how about posting to our Facebook wall? We’d love to see your pretty brotform loaves… PJH

  62. dwhebh

    Great recipe and very easy! I use parchment paper cut to fit in the loaf pan so there’s no problem with sticking. I used KA White Whole Wheat flour and pure cane syrup-excellent!

    So glad you like the bread – it’s a winner, for sure. Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm! PJH

  63. Kristin

    How can I adjust these ingredients to make it work well in a 9×5 pan? I’m using almond milk instead of dry milk and water if that matters.
    You may use only almond milk in place of the water (while omitting the milk powder too). Or a combination of almond milk and water as you suggested would work also. You may increase the recipe by 25% to fit well in a 9 x 5. Enjoy have fun trying this recipe ! Elisabeth

  64. dragonmist

    This sounds so scrumptious! My only problem with no-knead recipes is the fact that I have no mixer or anything of that nature motorized. And this is more than my bread machine can handle. Should I wait until I order my dough whisk in Jan. to make it? Can you suggest how to proceed without beating equipment? I had trouble beating the no-knead artisan bread dough enough by hand, using a wooden spoon, I know it would have been better with better mixing. Thanks, and thank you for wonderful recipes, hints and baking!

    You certainly don’t need to wait for the whisk! I think this recipe will come together just fine using a wooden spoon and some perseverance. The whisk will be easier, but you can get by with a sturdy utensil–the dough will just stick to the spoon more. I’d follow the pictures from the blog to make sure you get the right consistency, but I mix my bread up at home with wooden spoons and have yet to fail (completely–I admit, sometimes I have less-than-lovely breads. We all make mistakes!) Best, Kim@KAF

  65. Bkr

    Ok I’ve been baking bread for about 40 years but this turned out very thick and dry not moist and sticky as stated in the recipe. Didn’t rise up and my yeast was new. Used stand mixer. Would that make a difference?

    The mixing method would not have made the difference. The trouble sounds like the dough was too stiff and dry from either not enough liquid or too much flour added. Whole wheat can absorb a great amount of liquid; as such, you will want to be sure that a bread dough is very elastic and tacky. The dough should be sticking to your mixing bowl when you go to knead it! While it rises, it will firm up as the flour absorbs the liquid. Next time, keep an eye on the dough in the mixer as it comes together. If if forms a ball fairly quickly, add 2-3 Tbs of water to smooth it out. Even more won’t hurt, just be sure that the dough “climbs” up the dough hook as it mixes. And I would be sure to start slowly when mixing. Don’t increase the speed or it will become too tough and will resist the additional water. I hope this helps! Kim@KAF

  66. "Golda Lee"

    I just took this out of the oven! I did make some changes based on other reviews, but it is a forgiving recipe. Delicious, sliced perfectly, and I didn’t need OJ or powdered milk!!! I added my changes to my review is not posted yet…
    Golda Lee

    Thanks for connecting here, Golda, and sharing your success. Enjoy! PJH

  67. member-crzbutler

    In your bread recipes that call for orange juice, do you use fresh-squeezed or the juice from a carton/bottle? It probably doesn’t matter, but I was just wondering what you did in the test kitchen. Thank you.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      From a carton – since this is an employee-owned company, we try to keep costs down where we can; and processed vs. fresh doesn’t make a difference in its effect on the flavor of wheat. PJH

  68. Jean Damelio

    I’ve been baking bread on and off for 50 years or so. I will try this recipe for the first time today. (No-knead sounds like a good idea and this recipe sounds flavorful) I am a fan of King Arthur, buy only your flours, yeast, etc and have been to a few of your seminars in my area over the years. I have used lard as the fat in my breads and will again. Thank You for all the information I have learned today.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Jean, you’re very welcome! I hope you enjoy making this bread. Feel free to use both hands, and to give us a call at the Baker’s Hotline (855-371-5687) if you have any questions along the way. Barb@KAF

  69. Laura

    I have my first loaf of this rising in a warm place right now.

    I now have a LOT of questions. Sorry, but your site + FB have created an enthusiastic baker and follower and well…questions and some comments.

    1) Can you alter this recipe to use sourdough starter biga and if so, how?

    2) What’s up with recipes that range from no-knead/dump into pan and rise beautifully to those that require 1, 2, 3+ risings, punch-downs, etc. and also rise beautifully? I have a great cookbook from Il Forniao bakery that has a traditional whole wheat sourdough but it is “le pain” (bread pun) to make because it starts the night before and requires several risings. What do you get with all the extra risings?

    3) Thank you for including the technical things. I’ve read through many of the comments. In the post I learned about standard & not standard bread pan sizes, which explained a lot. My Pyrex pans are larger than the ones you use and so I will not be surprised that my loaf will look different.

    Your explanation of heating the milk to break down enzymes when substituting water+dry milk was awesome.

    I appreciate that KAF actually reads and responds to posts. I’ve made a few comments in various posts and you guys are great. I’m such a fan.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Laura- I’ll do my best to answer all your questions, and if you find yourself with a lot of questions again, email ( is a great way to reach us where we can have a more direct interaction with you to address all your inquiries. For question 1, there really wouldn’t be any reason or benefit to a preferment in this recipe, so I wouldn’t recommend trying to make one. In response to Question 2, no knead breads and naturally-leavened artisan bread have very different chemistry in regards to the methods you are using to develop the structure. Longer fermented doughs tend to have stronger flavors, which many people prefer, and in their case, the folds and rising periods help to keep the proper structure sustained for the extended fermentation. It’s wonderful to hear you enjoyed the post and all the technical explanations so much, and we hope to keep bringing you many more blogs that you find just as helpful and enjoyable in the future! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

    2. Laura

      Thank you so much for the prompt and educational replies! Much appreciated.

      The bread, which was rising when I wrote the questions, is out of the oven and is great. My only negative comment is that the post wasn’t kidding that this loaf has a tendency to stick to the pan! Even though the pan was well greased I still didn’t think I’d get the loaf out without tearing it up…but I did. I will absolutely be making this one again.

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      I’m so glad you did get it out….good work! The next time around, you can line the pan with parchment, leaving a 1″ lip out of both side of the pan, and that can help assure a slick removal. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  70. colleen ruffini

    I used a 2-1/2 liter Cash & Mason bowl for making this dough with a Cuisinart hand mixer and beaters at high speed . You should have seen my countertop and the other nearby appliances…spattered with dough everywhere! Also, the dough kept wrapping itself around the beaters once I got to a slightly high speed.. I’m totally pleased with the final product, and would like to make this recipe again, but what can I do to alter the method? I didn’t use the dough hook because back in 2009 PJH recommended the beaters. I have larger bowls but they]re wider rather than higher, so I suppose the dough would spatter just as much.

    The loaf also developed a couple of cracks in the top right side, but they closed up pretty much as it cooled. What do you think caused the cracks and what should I do next time?

    Would be so grateful for your feedback.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Colleen, this dough is too soft for a dough hook; it definitely needs the beaters. One thing you can try is making the dough in a large, deep saucepan, which I’ve done at times; we seem to get stuck on thinking about bowls, when really a saucepan is sometimes exactly the right size/shape. Another thing you can try, though it’s quite awkward, is draping a large bath towel over your arm (and thus over the bowl) as you beat, so the spatters hit the towel. Finally, if necessary, you can beat the dough in two batches, so there’s simply less in the bowl. As for the cracks – it sounds like perhaps your bread wasn’t quite risen enough before you put it in the oven. Or the top crust had dried out. Next time, make sure the crust is moist (spritz it with water if necessary); and make sure it’s risen according to the directions. Also, sometimes bread cracks no matter what; it’s the weather, the flour, the oven, who knows. Don’t stress over looks; it’ll still taste delicious. Good luck – PJH

  71. colleen ruffini

    Thank you so much for your help, which I need again. I certainly do have a s/s Farberware saucepan that’s 7″ tall and 10″ diameter, So I’ll try that. However, I can’t say I beat the dough at high speed because it wrapped itself around the beaters and I had to do it on about speed 3 on my Cuisinart hand mixer. Should I increase the beating time? What do you recommend? I let it rise to exactly the top of the pan before putting it in the oven. When should it be spritzed? You can tell I’m a total novice when it comes to bread baking and it’s fantastic to be able to go to people like you for advice.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Colleen, yes, try the saucepan. And try increasing the beating time a couple of minutes, to account for your hand beater not being able to handle the dough. Your rising level sounds right; spritz with warm water just before putting into the hot oven. And I’m so glad you’re asking questions here – that’s how you learn, so ask away! Good luck – PJH

  72. Colleen Ruffini

    Just want to say thanks for your reply. Hoping to get time this weekend to have another go at making this bread. Would it be ok to use more OJ instead of water? I’m interested to find out what it might do to the flavor.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      I wouldn’t advise using more OJ, personally. It is going to add more sugar, so the dough will rise faster and it will be sweeter. It will also increase the orange flavor in the dough. Jon@KAF

  73. Deborah

    OMG ! I have tried many bread recipes and finally I got a loaf of bread that LOOKS like a loaf of bread and it smells so good while baking and the taste ! Fantastic ! Thank you for this it renewed my bread baking confindance! (I was ready to give up) I will never buy bread again ! Thank you.

  74. "Suzanne Q."

    Baked this a couple of days ago and it is just fabulous. Wish I had looked at the pictures in the blog though beforehand, I would’ve known to let the dough rise just a wee bit more. Next time…:)

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Suzanne- Baking is certainly a trial and error process, even with a bunch of pictures to reference. It is great to hear you enjoyed the first loaf and it sounds like you will enjoy the second one even more! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Cheryl, I’d start with 1/3 cup, and go up from there if it gives you a result you like. The more you add, the harder it’ll be for the bread to rise; that’s the only caveat. You might also be interested in our No-Knead Harvest Grains Bread recipe. Enjoy – PJH

  75. Colleen Ruffini

    Dear PJH, your suggestion to use a saucepan was spot on. No mess, and easy to scrape out all the dough with a bowl scraper. My loaf was picture perfect, no cracks this time. In future, though, I’ll follow the suggestion to tent the loaf because when toasted, the crust is black. It’s purely a matter of personal preference, but I’d like the crust not to be quite so soft. Anything I can do to achieve this?
    Maybe dust with cornmeal before baking? Grateful thanks for your help.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      This recipe is designed to be quite soft. Anytime a recipe includes fat, sugar or milk, it will produce a soft crust. I would suggest a leaner dough to achieve a crisp crust. Jon@KAF

  76. Birgit

    I have made this whole wheat no-knead twice , since I fell in love with the white flour no knead recipe awhile back. BUT… yes there is a but. The first one the loaf came out almost crumbly soft, cake like texture. The loaf is nothing like pictured either. Mine came out looking very dark, (from the molasses) Since I am 40+ years of experience at baking I measure dry ingredients twice. Dough was still rather runny, so I added more and more flour it was over a cup and a half more to get a semblance of what the white no-knead looks and feels like.Then I quit paying attention and just went by feel to get it to where I was happy . This time it came out like a loaf of bread. Not sure if I like this recipe enough to try again. We had high humidity both times I baked this one, now with drier indoor temps it might be different.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Birgit- I can think of a couple different things that might have gone on with your loaf including too much water and a possible over-proofing, so if you would like to call our Baker’s Hotline at 855-371-2253, we’d be happy to talk through some possible recommendations for you in case you would like to try it again. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi George, there may be a number of things that went a bit wrong in your recipe, including the amount of liquids added. Please give the Baker’s Hotline a call at 1-855-652-3334. Thanks- Laurie

  77. olenubaker

    I doubled this recipe yesterday. I doubled everything. For the flour I used the ratio of two cups white whole wheat to one cup all-purpose. I used melted butter and added eight teaspoons of vital wheat gluten according to the directions on the box of four teaspoons per loaf. The flour and yeast were KAF but not the vital wheat gluten. I mixed everything by hand. I added 3/4 cup currants to one loaf. The loaves rose well in a short amount of time. I baked them for 40 minutes at 350 degrees. The both came looking good. I let them rest overnight before slicing.

    When I sliced them today the slices were very soft which I guess is good but they were very crumbly. Some of the slices broke in pieces. I have made this bread in a single loaf using all wheat flour and did not have this problem. Could using some all-purpose flour make the difference?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      The AP flour could have tenderized the loaf more than usual, but it shouldn’t be crumbly. Did the dough seem a bit drier than normal? This could result in a crumbly loaf. Jon@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It can be both! Orange juice in a whole wheat recipe helps cut the bitterness sometimes found in whole grains, but it can also obviously lend a nice citrus flavor to a recipe as well.

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