Multigrain Bread

This multigrain bread, made with a mix of rye, barley, oat, and whole wheat flours along with milk and molasses, is a healthy yet irresistible loaf of homemade bread you’ll come back to again and again.

A cut-open loaf of multigrain bread made with a mix of rye, barley, oats, whole wheat flours, and molasses, and milk

This easy multigrain bread is a lovely Norwegian-inspired amalgam of whole-wheat, barley, oat, and rye. The result is a nutty, oh-so-slightly-sweet, artisan-style loaf of homemade bread that’s practically begging to be toasted and smeared with butter, jam, avocado, nut butter, or whatever you want. Happily, the recipe makes a couple generously sized loaves—one for you to demolish and another to gift to a friend, if you can stand to part with it.–Angie Zoobkoff

Multigrain Bread

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 4 H
  • Makes 2 large loaves
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Ingredients

  • 1 cup rye flour
  • 1 cup barley flour
  • 3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 2 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon lukewarm water
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading and dusting, sifted
  • 3 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 ounce fresh yeast or 1/3 ounce (8.5 g) active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons Norwegian dark syrup or light molasses
  • Butter, for the bowl

Directions

  • 1. In a large bowl, combine the rye flour, barley flour, and oats. Add 2 cups lukewarm water and let stand for 30 minutes.
  • 2. In a small saucepan, heat the milk until just warm to the touch.
  • 3. In the bowl of a large standing mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the white flour, whole-wheat flour, yeast, and salt. Add the warm milk, along with 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon (195 ml) lukewarm water and the syrup or molasses and knead on low speed until combined, about 2 minutes. Add the oat mixture and continue kneading until the dough becomes sticky but workable, 5 to 7 minutes.
  • 4. On a floured surface, knead the dough a few times then shape into a ball. Transfer to a very large bowl that you’ve lightly buttered. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, 45 to 75 minutes.
  • 5. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • 6. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. On a floured surface, knead each ball of dough a few times then gently form it into oval-shaped loaves. Using a sharp knife, make a couple of slits on the top of each loaf. Place the loaves on the prepared baking sheet. Cover with clean kitchen towels and let rise for 1 hour.
  • 7. Dust the tops of the loaves with a little flour and bake until golden brown, 40 to 60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Store at room temperature in a resealable plastic bag for up to 2 days. Alternatively, place the cooled loaves in airtight plastic bags and freeze for up to 2 months.

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Recipe Testers Reviews

I was curious to try this multigrain bread recipe because of the mix of whole grain flours. I had never used barley flour. I must say it was a beautiful loaf. It had a nice crumb, a lovely crisp crust, and was not as dense as I thought it might have been. And it was delicious. None of the different flours' tastes were predominant—in a good way.

The recipe came together quite easily. I used whole milk, light molasses (Grandma's brand), and active dry yeast. Kneading the dough for 5 minutes after combining all the ingredients made it workable, but I did have to add another 1/4 cup of water. I made half the recipe. It makes a very large loaf.

I baked it in an Emile Henry bread cloche for 1 hour. The internal temperature was 190°F.

I cut the round loaf into quarters and then sliced into pieces about 1/2 inch thick. We liked it best toasted with butter and jam. It was also tasty with almond butter. I think it would be even better with another 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of salt (I used Morton Kosher) and another 2 teaspoons molasses.

This multigrain bread recipe produces 2 large loaves of very hearty multigrain bread. The combination of the 4 types of flour plus oats gives this bread fantastic flavor and color. It looks very artisan, has a tight crumb, and is absolutely lovely toasted and slathered with butter or jam. It's not going to be the type of bread you make a sandwich on, though, because it’s so dense and hearty, you'll be full after one slice! We enjoyed it for several days without any change to flavor or texture.

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