Rye bread (extremely simple and delicious)

My friend Pete Owen Jones cannot eat wheat.  He LOVES rye bread and pronounced this bread "dsklfdoiinrj" because he had a mouth full of it at the time.

There is a popular misconception that you have to get complicated about rye flour.  Not so.  You don't need sourdough, you don't need molasses, you don't need oil.  You just need the usual four suspects (flour, water, salt, yeast) to make a completely simple, lovely rye loaf.

Rye does not have the same kind of gluten structure as wheat.  That means many people who are intolerant to wheat, like Peter can eat rye pefectly easily.  That also means you do not need to knead rye flour the way you have to knead wheat or spelt.  Don't expect this dough to transform at all.  It is not going to get silky and elasticy like a wheat dough.  The result, nevertheless, is a lovely, soft textured, crispy crusted, delicious and satisfying bread.  Good with ham.  Good with cheese.  Peter likes it best with butter and home made wild cherry jam.

Peter's jam made with wild cherries he picked himself. YUM.

Simple rye bread

300 grams of light rye flour
3 grams dry yeast (or 1.5 g instant yeast or 6 grams fresh yeast)
250 grams of warm water
6 grams of salt

Put the flour in a bowl and make a well in it.  Put the yeast in the well and pour on 1/2 the water.  Let it rest for 15 minutes.  Put the rest of the water in and the salt and mix all of this together with a wooden spoon. Give it a good stir to make sure all of the ingredients are well mixed.  You won't have to knead it but give it some welly in order to ensure your yeast and salt are evenly mixed in.  It will be kind of like trying to stir porridge or mud pies.  Satisfying.  Messy.  Adjust the water (ie add more if necessary) so that you have a soft, sticky dough.  It should not come away clean from the bowl, but be much softer - you can easily press your fingers into it.

Wet your hands thoroughly and scrape it all out of the bowl.  Mould it into a little brick and gently place it in a greased baking tin.  It can come about 2/3 of the way up the sides.

Leave it, covered with a damp tea towel or cling flim for two hours or so until it has risen visibly and come to the top of the tin.  There will be little holes on top and that is normal:  these are the air bubbles bursting through the top.

Dust it with flour or spray the top with a plant sprayer and sprinkle some seeds on the top.

Bake it in an oven that you have preheated to 200 degrees C (400 degrees F) for 45 minutes.  If you would like to, take it out of the tin and just sit it on the shelf in the oven for the last 5 minutes so the whole thing gets nice and brown.

Beautiful 100% rye loaf

231 Responses to “Rye bread (extremely simple and delicious)”

  1. Susie

    21. Feb, 2012

    I wish mine came out like yours. It looks so beautiful its making my mouth water.. so much longing do I have for a typically British nutty slice of toast with jam or cheese..but it ain't happening. I got very excited as I was making this recipie and it rose really fast. I thought 'tow hours raising time??, it will be through the roof by then. I used fresh yeast 6 grams. I followed the recipie to the T.. but sadly the loaf cooked lovely on the outside but even after an hour's cooking at 200, it would not cook inside. It was porridge. It wouldn't cook no matter what I did. Sadly it ended up in the bin. I think definately there is something about Swedish flour that is drastically different. There is only onbe grade of Rye in the shops so all I can think is that it could possibly be too heavy. I will just have to look at the picture of your loaf and imagine what it would have been like and drool.

  2. robin

    07. Oct, 2012

    Hi - some thoughts...have just made some using part rye flour and part white bread flour - this lightens the loaf. Go for a firm dough and knead it well then allow to rise (about 2 hours) then make two baguette-type loaves and cook as above for about 30 minutes. Luvverly!!

  3. virtuousbread

    08. Oct, 2012


  4. Eddie

    26. Jan, 2013

    Hi, could I make this in a bread making machine?

    Regards Eddie

  5. virtuousbread

    28. Jan, 2013

    Hi Eddie, that is a great question and the honest answer is, I have no idea. As I don't have a bread machine I cannot even test it for you. Give it a try? The only difference is that you don't have to knead it so I suggest you mix it by hand and then put it in the machine and let it do a rise for a few hours and then bake it? What can go that badly wrong??! Let me know!

  6. Mimi

    07. Mar, 2013

    Hello, your recipe sounds like just what I am searching for, however I am in the U.S.A., can you convert the measurements for me to ounces? I don't want to use the "scientific" conversions because they go into 0.XXXXXXXX. Thank you.

  7. Caromien

    11. Mar, 2013

    Mine came out flat but delicious, I tried to increase the dough to 500g for the 2nd one and it was a disaster, it looked done on the outside but was completely pasty and underbaked on the inside after an hour, it went straight to the bin :(

  8. Caromien

    11. Mar, 2013

    Mine came out flat but delicious. I tried to make a 2nd one and increased the flour to 500g, adjusting the water and yeast and baking time. It was a complete disaster that went straight to the bin. It looked done on the outside but was pasty and undercooked on the inside :(

  9. virtuousbread

    13. Mar, 2013

    Hello! I confess I have no idea (given I live here!) but if you google "how much is xx grams in cups" I am sure you will find it!

  10. Casseda

    14. Mar, 2013

    I have a slow rise(24hr) Artisan bread recipe, which makes fabulous crusty bread. but have never made it with lots of rye flour. I am trying rye flour today---and it does not look good!! I am using locally grown great organic rye flour from Vancouver Island. My question for you is---what is "light rye" which you mention in your recipe. Maybe that is your secret to the nice looking loaf which deserves praise.

  11. virtuousbread

    14. Mar, 2013

    Hi there, oof. rye is really really different from wheat. Absorbs more water, different gluten structure. Does not require any kneading (unless mixed with wheat) and gives a totally different result in dough and bread form! Light rye is like white wheat - the bran and some germ is seived off. Dark rye is like whole wheat. If you have never worked with rye before - you may be in for a surprise (not sure if good or bad). Let me know how it works but you may want to look in "recipe" section of the site for a rye recipe and read a bit about rye (just search rye) for some info. I love rye but it is totally different from wheat!

  12. Gwen

    23. Mar, 2013

    I have been looking for a 100% rye bread for a long time. I mixed this one together and am about half way through the rising now. There is a great web site for conversions just for cooking. It is traditionaloven.com. It is very specific down to even the types of flour. For instance 300 grams equates to 2.94 cups of rye flour or 2.5 cups of wheat flour. So be sure to use the measure conversion for rye.

    300 grams rye flour = 2.94 cups
    3 grams of dry yeast = 1.06 tsp, 1.5 grams instant yeast =. 48 tsp, and 6 grams fresh yeast = 2.12 tsp. 250
    250 grams of water = 1.05 cups (this did not seem like nearly enough)
    6 grams salt = 1.05 tsp

    I ground my own flour from organic rye berries - so I'm not sure if that is light or dark rye flour. I let my bread machine mix the sticky gray dough, then scooped it out into a greased pan. Wish me luck. I did two things wrong, so if I am not successful, I will correct and try again. I used 1 tsp of rapid yeast and probably should have used .5 tsp. Also since I usually just make bread in a bread machine, I do not have proper bread pans. So I used a glass bread pan.

    Farmer in Nebraska

  13. virtuousbread

    25. Mar, 2013

    Hi Gwen! How did it go? Please let me know, I am dying to!

  14. virtuousbread

    25. Mar, 2013

    ps dark rye is like whole wheat - ie it has the bran and the germ. light rye is like white wheat, the bran and the germ are extracted.

  15. Mona

    08. Apr, 2013

    Hi, just found this blog while searching for volkornbrot recipes ( that really dense, moist German/nordic bread that weighs like a brick). I just bought a bag of dark rye flour in bulk, to make that volkornbrot, but man, what a process! So many steps, and something like 24 hours to wait to ferment etc. So I decided to look for a much easier way to use the rye flour and will try your recipe out. Any success stories using the dark rye flour?

  16. virtuousbread

    08. Apr, 2013

    Hi Mona

    yes, this recipe works just as well with dark or light flour. However, if you really want a "pumpernickel" experience, try the recipe for Danish Rye (just look for it on the site, you will find it). It is wonderful....

  17. Mona

    10. Apr, 2013

    Thanks so much! I will definitely give this a go with the dark rye flour.( I did google Danish rye, but the process involves using sourdough starter, plus 18 hours to rise/ferment,plus another 24 hours wrapped up in cloth after baked....too time consuming for me...i'll just stick with your recipe,and buy the volkornbrot when I get the craving) :)

  18. Mona

    10. Apr, 2013

    Thanks a lot! Will give it a go :-D

  19. Nicola

    15. May, 2013

    Hi, I tried this today (actually did the Leicestershire rye bread, but it's the same except with spices added, right)? I used instant yeast and I only had dark rye flour. I followed the instructions - let the yeast rest 15 minutes and let it rise for about 2 1/2 hours. It rose a tiny bit and got little holes on top. However, it didn't rise anywhere near as much as you described. I thought it would rise more in the oven, but it didn't. It came out heavy like a brick! (Tasted good, though)

    Any ideas how I could make it rise more? Was it because it was dark rye instead of light? Maybe I didn't mix it enough?

    Also, by the way, I weighed the ingredients and then put them into measuring cups/spoons. Here are my equivalents:
    300 g (dark) rye flour - 2 1/2 cups
    1.5 g instant yeast - just under 1 teaspoon
    250 g water - 1 1/4 cup
    6 g salt - 1 tsp

    Does that make sense?


  20. virtuousbread

    15. May, 2013

    Dear Nicola

    thanks for you message! The usual issue with rye is that the dough is simply too dry. I see you are in Canada? The rye in North America is really different from the UK (I know that because I am in Mexico city at the moment and I am baking with American rye). I find it needs much more water. The dough should be really REALLY soft - so soft you can barely pick it up. You scoop it and shape it with wet hands but the imprint of the hand holding the dough should certainly be left in the bottom of the dough - that is how soft I mean! So use the same ingredients but up the water content and see how you do. This should do the trick. Rye has such a bad repuation but made well it is truly light and lovely! Let me know how you get on!

  21. Nicola

    16. May, 2013

    Thanks for your reply! Actually, I am in Seoul, Korea, but I was using American dark rye flour (Bob's Red Mill). I thought it was very soft (I left handprints), but I guess not so much that I almost couldn't pick it up. I'll try again in a few days and let you know what happens.

    Also, I used a Pyrex glass bread pan, not a tin - does this make a difference?

  22. Rachel

    26. May, 2013

    Hi - I left a message on your other rye page last night, as I was sitting watching a loaf made with this recipe do nothing...!
    Update, I hate binning food, so made a sort of yeast starter, with another 10g of instant yeast, half a teaspoon of honey, about 150g rye flour and rather a lot of warm water. Wetter than the original, bearing in mind your comments above. Left them both overnight and the starter was lovely & spongy this morning, while the loaf was still doing nothing. So I squidged them together, plopped the mixture back in the loaf tin & left them another hour or so. Bingo!
    My mistake was turning it back into the tin, as there was far too much dough and it spilled over both before & during baking. But it is delicious and light and crispy.
    Maybe the recipe just needs more instant yeast and even more water if instant yeast is used.
    Thanks for a great resource.

  23. virtuousbread

    26. May, 2013

    Thank you for your comments and suggestions - you are too right - I have to edit the recipe to mention the problem with instant yeast! What an oversight. Truly - thanks indeed!

  24. Nicola

    27. May, 2013

    Any idea of the total proportions of instant yeast and water you used, Rachel?

    I have tried it a couple more times (after sieving the flour to get out the heavy bran and make it lighter): the first time with lots of water - it rose really well but then fell as soon as I put it in the oven. The second time with less water (but more than the recipe) - it hardly rose at all....

  25. Rachel

    04. Jun, 2013

    Tried again today, as above but with 10g of instant yeast and nearly a mug of warm water, plus half a tsp of honey in the well to encourage the yeast.

  26. Rachel

    05. Jun, 2013

    Hm, well it looked and tasted perfect, but it is clearly still fermenting in the tummy & producing quite spectacular wind. Could be a dangerous weapon in the wrong hands!
    So - next batch I'll mess about with the proportions again & report back, meanwhile only follow my previous suggestion if you have a hot air balloon to fill, or an enemy to humiliate.

  27. virtuousbread

    17. Jun, 2013

    hi there, sorry for delay. yes too much yeast will do that to you which is why i call for so little and a long rise. If you cut down on the yeast and really get it bubbly with some of the flour and the water (and warm it if you feel it helps) and then stir in the rest of the flour it may take longer but you won't have too much yeast in the mix (which is bad for you). I made some sourdough rye the other day - it was about 17 degrees - and it took 20 hours to rise. Just a cold, damp day....great bread though.

  28. Craig

    18. Jun, 2013

    Hi, found your site while looking for a better Ciabatta recipe.
    I have a cafe and bake all the breads, I've been self teaching, experimenting for a couple of years.
    I made a rye loaf recipe that I find very successful
    150g rye (light)
    300g white flour
    1 tsp salt
    300mls warm water
    1 tsp sugar
    7 grams yeast dried
    75mls oil (i've been using soya bean)
    mix sugar yeast and water leave to sit 5 minutes
    Mix into flours and salt in a mixer with a dough hook for 1 minute add oil mix a further 3 minutes (if doing this by hand allow more mixing time) Leave to double in size, turn out onto floured bench, knead for 3 minutes shape into an oblong, leave to rest 10 minutes bake 25 minutes in a moderate to high setting.
    I find this to have a much nicer texture to white or wholemeal, a little more elasticity, softer and a slightly better keeping quality.

  29. virtuousbread

    18. Jun, 2013

    thank you for that!

  30. marie

    19. Jun, 2013

    Hi, sounds great, can you freeze this bread?

  31. marie

    19. Jun, 2013

    Hi this sounds lovely, does it freeze well?

  32. virtuousbread

    19. Jun, 2013

    It freezes beautifully - as does all bread, actually!

  33. Natty

    24. Aug, 2013

    Hi, I am a complete bread novice and due to a food allergy I've decided to try my hand at baking my own bread. Rye is okay but wheat is out, which rules out a LOT of rye recipes.

    Have you got any tips for a rye bread newbie? I have done homemade GF bread but it is far too cake-like and not nearly as satisfying as rye.

    Also, I am currently living in North America, so according to previous comments I'll need to add more water? Do you know approximately how much extra I'll need to add?

    Cheers :)

  34. Adam

    25. Aug, 2013

    Hi there! I really want to try this! But i have a question - is the loaf tin used a 1lb or a 2lb tin? Don't wanna go making it in the wrong one and burning/undercooking it ;)

  35. virtuousbread

    27. Aug, 2013

    Hi there, it is a one pound tin!

  36. virtuousbread

    27. Aug, 2013

    Hi Natty and thanks for the message. There is a recipe for rye on the website - look here: http://www.virtuousbread.com/bread-and-conversation/easy-recipe-for-rye-bread-part-2/ and click on the link for the earlier post with the recipe - but read both! The water content depends on your flour. Some flour is more absorbent than others. You want a really really soft dough - when you pick it up to shape it, you should leave a hand print on it when it sits on your hand. If it does not, it's too dry. Be patient. it will rise - but sometimes slowly - and don't cut into it until a day or 2 after you have baked it - it's just too soft!

  37. Natty

    27. Aug, 2013

    Thanks. I made it a couple of days ago and while it tastes lovely and is quite moist it didn't rise more than 1 cm after four hours. The yeast I used is best before next March and works fine when I make GF pizza dough but after reading the other post I checked it and it is instant dry yeast. I did add a tsp of castor sugar, though... but I also squashed it into the loaf pan. Lesson learnt, I'll be more gentle next time. I also used my stand mixer with dough hook attachment; would that have made a difference? Thanks!

  38. Alisa

    27. Oct, 2013

    I am so happy that I found this blog! Most rye bread recipes include white or wheat flour. I have discovered that it is so much more delicious and nutritious without the white flour.

    I now only use rye flour and shape them into about 36 rolls. After I let them rise for an hour they are all sticking together, which is good. The last few times I didn't do this
    ( I was too impatient to let the dough rise) and the result were extremely hard crusted rolls that were too difficult to even bite into !
    My questions are:
    1. Is it necessary to preheat the oven ?
    2. How do I know when the rolls are ready i.e. cooked inside? Sometimes I think there are ready but then when we cut into them, they are not cooked inside.

    Hope you reply whenever you can and thank you so much for your tips. Thanks !

  39. Alisa

    27. Oct, 2013

    I forgot to add an important thing. Since they are rolls, is the cooking time less and at what temperature in celsius? It seems that preheating the oven creates a hard crust. We prefer a softer crust but want the rolls to be cooked inside.
    Do you have any suggestions? Thanks !

  40. Diane

    01. Dec, 2013

    Thank you so much for this recipe - one of the few 100% rye ones. This is the very first time I've made bread and it worked perfectly and is delicious. I had to use a lot more water than stated but thanks to your excellent description of the consistency I obviously got it right. Thank you! Would adding seeds into the dough itself work?

  41. virtuousbread

    04. Dec, 2013

    Dear Diane

    yes! you can add seeds (or nuts/dried fruit) directly to the dough but soak it overnight in water first so that it is nice and soft and does not pull moisture out of the dough. I am so pleased the recipe works for you and thanks for writing. Send photos! we love photos!

  42. virtuousbread

    04. Dec, 2013

    Hi ALisa

    sorry for the delay in responding. I don't always catch comments. First, thanks for writing and second I am pleased you like the recipe. When you make rye, remember it is often at it's best 1-2 days after you bake it - the dough is so wet. Secondly, when you make buns of any kind, you want to put the heat right up so that they cook through and go brown quickly - giving you a nice crust that is thin and provides a good look and a good ratio between it and the "crumb" (the inside). So, I would bake the buns at 220 degrees for 20 minutes or so. They should sound hollow when you tap them. You can also use a probe thermometer and you want it to get to 98 degrees C inside your buns! Let me know!

  43. Alisa

    05. Dec, 2013

    Hi Jane. No need to apologize for the delay in responding. You answered all my questions on another page from this blog:

    I have learned from your wonderful advice to bake rolls at a high temperature of 220 C but it seems that 20 minutes is not enough. I bake them for 35 minutes in a cold(not preheated) convection oven.
    The finished product is delicious

    Thank you & Happy Holidays !!

  44. Allie

    02. Jan, 2014

    I tried the rye bread recipe twice, the first time it didn't rise at all, so I increased the water and this time it did rise. The problem is it didn't cook in the center. I was wondering if you have any suggestions.

  45. Allie

    04. Jan, 2014

    I have tried the bread recipe twice and the first time it didn't rise. I followed suggestions in previous postings and added more water and the center didn't cook. Any suggestions?

  46. virtuousbread

    04. Jan, 2014

    Dear Allie

    Firstly, I am glad your bread rose. !/2 way there. Now, to baking - do you know if your oven is up to temperature? Often ovens are off by 5-10 degrees and this makes a huge difference. Borrow or buy and oven thermometer and have a check. If it is off, get the engineer to calibrate it. If it is on and you know your bread is not baking through, simply bake it for longer next time. If it gets too brown, cover it with foil or grease proof paper. Another 10 minutes should do the trick!

  47. Allie

    04. Jan, 2014

    Thanks I will give it a try, sorry about the two comments. I was having computer problems and the first didn't show until I added the second.

  48. evie

    18. Feb, 2014

    I went ahead and attempted this bread. The first time it didn't rise but the taste was good. The second time I added more water. After baking, however, it sunk a little in the middle and was much more gummy inside. (I couldn't wait to slice it but I did wait until it was cooled down.) It was still flat but a little taller (1.5 inches). I am wondering how to get that "domed" shape of the bread in your picture; I am also wondering if I put too much water the second time. The second time I tried to aim for a "gluten free" bread consistency where it is easy to stir the ingredients together, but not wet enough to pour. Is this too much water? I am dying to understand the perfect consistency of the dough so I can make a loaf that looks like yours! And I wish it has a rounded top and not flat or sunken in like mine! I cannot eat wheat either, and I wish I can master this recipe so I can have it the rest of my life!

  49. virtuousbread

    19. Feb, 2014

    Hi there, please keep persevering. Rye needs to be wet but NOT as wet as gluten free. You should be able to pick it up. If you make it too wet by accident, bake it at 180 degrees for about an hour or it will not cook through before it burns. As re "domed" that is a fluke of the camera. Rye gluten is not stretchy and rye will never dome like wheat. It's flat on the top - truly! And remember - it's best on day 2. Just be patient....let me know how it goes!

  50. evie

    20. Feb, 2014

    Hi, thanks so much for the reply. I tried again today, but it didn't rise. ( I did switch a brand of flours) I am going to try to add some sweeteners next time perhaps that would help. Would something more sour/acidic besides water work better? I noticed that you baked with wine! Can I add some vinegar? I am totally new to baking so I have no idea! I tried baking gluten free and nothing ever came out except one bread loaf but it was full of starches and xanthan gum which give me problems. I have one more question, if after stirring the mixture together to form a dough, I realize that the dough is too stiff, do I just pour water over the dough? I find it hard to evenly distribute the extra water I am adding when it is already stirred into a lump. Can I knead it a TINY bit? I will keep trying, hopefully I will finally get this. Thanks so much for your help.

  51. Peggy

    14. Mar, 2014

    Help. Ok I have tried this twice. Both times the bread rose to the top of the bread pan however upon baking it seems to flop.

    What am I doing wrong? Argh.

  52. virtuousbread

    14. Mar, 2014

    OK - hmmm.....when you cut into your bread is the crust intact and then there is a gap beneath the crust and then there is the rest of the crumb (the insidey bit?). Does a cross section look like that? It sounds as if you are actually letting it rise for too long! It can be tricky to judge any bread - over rising results in the bread collapsing either before it goes in the oven or actually in the oven because it's not always easy to spot. Under rising leads to the bread splitting and being rather denser than it should be. Try this: cover the dough (in the tin) and put it in the fridge over night. Turn on the oven and put the dough straight in the oven from the tin. Have a good look at it before you put it in and if the bread is perfect you know what it "should" look like. Even photograph it so you can compare! Let me know how you get on!

  53. dan

    22. Mar, 2014

    hi just made dark rye bread with sun flower seeds very delicious

  54. Maureen

    09. Apr, 2014

    I can't wait to try this recipe. It's just what I have been looking for. An aside: did Peter ever live in Whistler BC. He looks familiar.

  55. virtuousbread

    09. Apr, 2014

    Dear Maureen, let me know how it goes and no, I don't think Pete ever lived in BC!

  56. Zach

    15. Apr, 2014

    Can I use beer in place of water? ( at room temp )
    Thought it would maybe improve the flavor and come out with a distinct taste. Let me know if this would work.
    I am trying to make wheat free bread and I hope this will work to give me something to make a sandwich with.

  57. Zach

    15. Apr, 2014

    You won't have to knead it but give it some welly in order to ensure your yeast and salt are evenly mixed in.

    what do you mean by welly ?

  58. virtuousbread

    16. Apr, 2014

    yes you can use beer!

  59. virtuousbread

    16. Apr, 2014

    sorry! it means you need to make an effort!

  60. Marcel

    18. May, 2014

    Hi. I live in Belgium and I have bought some wholegrain rye flour (type 130) from a local organic shop.

    The rye originates from France. Would you know if this is the same as UK rye or is it more like the American variety (i.e. needing more water).

    Just before I found this site, I tried to make some bread using the standard quantities of 500gr flour (rye) and 300ml water, but the dough is very heavy, not at all sticky as you describe, hence my question.

    Thanks in adavance

  61. S. David Pullara

    19. May, 2014

    Thank you for this simple recipe! I've been making it for a few months now using Bob's Red Mill Dark Rye Flour and it's been delicious, even when didn't turn out quite right. It doesn't rise as much as in the photo but I suspect it's because it's dark rye. So I've been making slightly larger loaves, yesterday making one using 50% more ingredients and it turned out well. I typically add 40g of ground flaxseeds and 3-4 tbsp blackstrap molasses, which imparts a yummy flavor.

    As mentioned, the amount of water is critical to how it will turn out. With my early loaves the bread rose but then fell to half its size when taken out of the oven, while others didn't rise at all. I think this was because the dough was too wet or too dry, respectively, and at first I missed the part about using *warm* water.

  62. virtuousbread

    21. May, 2014

    I am so pleased you like it! There is a knack to making rye and it's all in the texture - thank you for persevering because it is SUCH good bread (and lasts a long time). We always have some in the house (and freezer!). Thank you for writing. Jane

  63. virtuousbread

    21. May, 2014

    Hi there, with rye, I would not stick to any standard!!! Different flour is simply different! I would use much more than 300 g water for 500 g flour. Keep adding water until you have a VERY soft dough - so soft that you can hardly pick it up. Even if you have to scrape it into the tin, it will rise and make good bread (but if it's that soft, bake it more like a cake - at 180 degrees C for about an hour. The point is there is no standard. More water (within reason) will make much nicer, softer, less brick like rye. And remember because the dough it so wet, the bread is damp. Best leave it for 24-48 hours before you cut into it! Jane

  64. Marcel

    22. May, 2014

    Hi. I tried another loaf with more water and it came out much better, thanks.

    Next time, I will make it even more "sticky"

  65. Sophie

    17. Jun, 2014

    I tried this and it came out simply lovely! At first I thought the dough was way too wet and muddy so I added some more and more rye flour (yes, I don't have a weighing machine :) .
    What a success. Thanks a lot for the nice recipe. 100% rye bread. Simple and yummy.

  66. Diane

    04. Jul, 2014

    Hi. I haven't made this bread yet, but plan to. My question is, what about making it sourdough? Would I just add starter and decrease the amount of water? Or will it not work sourdough?

  67. virtuousbread

    04. Jul, 2014

    it absolutely works with sourdough. I use 160 g of refreshed rye sourdough starter, 240 g rye flour, 140 g water (plus more if necessary) and 5 g salt! Bake at 230 for 10 mins and 200 for 30. Wait 1-2 days to eat. yum.

  68. Ruth

    07. Jul, 2014

    Thank you for your recipe, however, there has to be some measurement issues here, I followed your recipe step by step, excited because it is 100% rye and no other flours! the consistency of porridge continues the length of the entire recipe! it's so watery that will not hold shape or rise at all...
    I'm so disappointed, I am hoping to see photos on the stages of this bread, perhaps I can see what to look for.
    Your bread looks fantastic, is that double the recipe?

  69. virtuousbread

    11. Jul, 2014

    Hi there

    Hm...sorry to hear you got porridge so I have to ask - are you sure you are measuring correctly? Are you scales accurate? I weigh everything on a digital scale...Sorry, had to ask. I ask because I find I always have to add more water to my dough - certainly I never need to cut back. The loaf in the photo is exactly the recipe as written - it's a 550 (or so) gram loaf. Have a read here: http://www.virtuousbread.com/bread-and-conversation/easy-recipe-for-rye-bread-part-2/ and reference the earlier post too (you will see the link in the post I sent you above). I hope they help!

  70. Matthias

    29. Jul, 2014

    the bread looks absolutely amazing and I am very keen to try to make this bread myself. The bakeries here do not sell 100% rye (closest I found was 95%) so home-made it is! I do like to know if this bread can be made by just forming a roll or clump with the dough and putting it in the oven, as I do not have a bread-shaped tin, or would you recommend getting one?

  71. virtuousbread

    29. Jul, 2014

    Hi there

    sadly with 100% rye you need to put it in something to rise! the gluten is very weak and it won't hold it's shape otherwise. You will get very flat, very dense pancakes!

  72. Susan

    21. Aug, 2014

    Hi there, I'm interested in trying this recipe. Please can you advise 4 things? 1 - Is this recipe good for people that normally suffer from bloatedness after eating bread (wheat intolerance)? 2 - Do you know the gas mark of the oven for 200 degrees C? My oven works on gas mark 1 to gas mark 9. 3 - While waiting for the second day to eat the bread, do you wrap it in foil? 4 - How long will the bread last when it's been cut into (2, 3, 5 days)? Sorry for so many questions and thanks in advance for your response.

  73. virtuousbread

    21. Aug, 2014

    Hi there, here are the answers!

    1. yes
    2. I do not, but I am sure google can tell yoU!
    3. Let the bread cool and I just wrap it in a tea towel and put it in a bread crock
    4. 4-5 days and it's still great!

  74. Ssplash

    01. Sep, 2014

    Hi, I made the bread and it looks great. Thank you so much for the recipe. I also have a few questions :)

    1. The taste is a bit too bitter though, and I'm used to rye bread and its different varieties as it's the only bread I eat. Do you have any suggestions? I let it rise 3 hours and then put it in the fridge overnight. Could it be the amount of time rising?

    2. Also, would increasing the amount of flour increase the amount of all the other ingredients proportionally ? What about baking time? How long for say 500gr of flour?

    3. If we wait for that day or two before eating it, what's the best way to keep it? Wrapped up in a cloth, in the fridge or in cling film? Thank you so much. You've made my day!

  75. Ssplash

    01. Sep, 2014

    About the questions above, I forgot to say that the flour is dark rye flour and the yeast is fresh. Thank you!

  76. virtuousbread

    01. Sep, 2014

    Hi there

    I am glad you liked it. Here are your answers:

    1. I don't think the bitterness is from the rising. I think it is the flour. Rye, like all flour, varies enormously in flavour. Try a couple of different brands until you find one you like.
    2. Indeed, increase proportionally. Baking time is more or less the same because the loaf does kind of begin to bake itself. However, if it feels too soft and squashy, leave it in the oven for a little longer

    3. I wrap mine in a cloth and put it in a bread tin. I never refrigerate it but when I bake I usually bake 6 or so at a time and freeze them when they are entirely cool. They freeze beautifully!

    I am so glad I made your day! Thank you for writing. Jane

  77. Ssplash

    01. Sep, 2014

    Thank you, Jane. This is really helpful :) Cheers

  78. virtuousbread

    01. Sep, 2014


  79. Ewout Arentsen

    05. Sep, 2014

    Thanks for the amazing recipe! Just working on my 3rd loaf and really enjoying them!

    Might you have some advice for additives to add to the bread, that work well with rye? Like spices?

  80. virtuousbread

    05. Sep, 2014

    So pleased you like it! Try adding a teaspoon of ground coriander or cinnamon or a half teaspoon of ground cumin or cardamom. Whole cumin seeds or caraway or fennel seeds are also lovely!

  81. Jigger

    07. Sep, 2014

    Hi, I noticed a lot of people commenting on the fact that their bread did not cook on the inside, just wanted to make sure that you are cooking it at 250 Celsius which is 480 Fahrenheit, or 500 is close enough till the top is nice and brown - about a half hour, then you can lower the heat to about 200 Celsius which is about 400 Fahrenheit for another 10-15 minutes this should cook your brad and it should crack on the top, let it sit till the next day for best results

  82. Brian

    28. Sep, 2014

    1) Your recipe is fantastic... simple and to the point. I have used it a few times, multiplied the quantities, added carraway for flavour, sunflower and flax seeds and will continue to play around with this recipe.
    2) A sliced loaf has been in my freezer for almost a week- will check it out sometime.
    3) It's a mystery to me how the dough rises without added sugar.
    4) With one exception, my breads are straight topped-> the exception was a hill, similar to your illustration.
    5) Like other people, I found the bread to be too wet, so have adjusted baking time to an hour, then let the bread rest for another 15 minutes to 'dry'.
    6) The doughs I have made till now, have been very sticky , so have been baked in metal forms lined with paper. My next experiment will be to add more rye flour, for a firmer dough which can be shaped.
    7) Members of my [retirees] club loved the bread ... I will give them the recipe [translated into Hebrew] with a link to this site.

  83. virtuousbread

    30. Sep, 2014

    Hello Brian! Thank you for your comment. I am so pleased you like it. As re your Q3, bread does not need sugar to rise. The yeast eats the sugars in the flour. Additional sugar is not necessary and that is great news for people who are watching their sugar intake. But when you buy bread, read the label or ask the baker. Good bread for everyday eating just does not have sugar! Celebration bread, of course, usually does (along with enriching items like eggs and milk and fat). 100% rye is mostly flat topped only because rye gluten is not stretchy so it won't usually dome the way bread with wheat (or other stretchy gluten grain flour) will dome. Be careful of adding more flour - you may get a brick. The feature of rye is the stickyiness. I usually let the loaves sit around for 2 days (wrapped in a cloth) before cutting them open. They settle and dry out a little. And I slice it really thinly too. I am so pleased you like it! Jane

  84. stephanie

    24. Oct, 2014

    Can't wait to try your recipe, can you make it into rolls?

  85. virtuousbread

    24. Oct, 2014

    Hi there, you can but it's a little trick because the dough is so soft. If you put a little bit (like 30-40%) wheat in the dough it is easier to shape into rolls. Or you can have kind of flattish "buns" that are super tasty but not round!

  86. Phoebe

    25. Oct, 2014

    Can you please post a picture of what the dough is supposed to look like? I tried this last night, and it rose well. I accidentally forgot about it and left it to rise overnight. When I baked it this morning, the outside was burning while the inside was still very wet. I'm not sure what kind of rye I used, I think it was light. I haven't tasted it yet.

  87. virtuousbread

    29. Oct, 2014

    Yes, next time I make it I will put a photo of the dough on the site! It could be, though, that your's just over rose. Try again and see!
    Also, check oven temp - a major culprit in bread drama!

  88. Neil

    04. Nov, 2014


    Thanks for the recipe. Like others who have commented I followed it to the letter, twice. I used digital scales also but on both occasions it came out with the middle undercooked and still doughy. The first time I don't think my oven was hot enough, I had it at 180 fan. But even after an hour of cooking I left it in for a further 15/20 mins and it was still the same. Second time round I put it up to 205 degrees C, and cooked for about an hour with the same result. I even left it a full day and it was still the same. The oven is 2 months old so it's definitely not that either. I thought I might have been using too much water but I stuck to 250ml. I used fast action yeast but still only used the 1.5g you suggested. Any ideas?

  89. Kris Hughes

    06. Nov, 2014

    Just a note to say that I tried the recipe Craig posted to this discussion in June 2013, and it is excellent! I was sceptical about the amount of oil in requires, but it helps the bread keep longer, and makes the rye dough nice and easy to deal with.

  90. virtuousbread

    08. Nov, 2014

    Hi there, I am sorry to hear that. Firstly, as it says in the recipe, don't even cut into it for 1 or 2 days. rye is good for 4-5 days. So, if you are cutting into it when it is fresh, that's a bad idea. Rye has to settle. If you have been waiting, you can try putting the bread in at 230 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 200 and bake for a further 30. Rye is not wheat however so don't expect it to be dry like wheat bread is! Any rye that you buy from a shop that is dry is probably a rye/wheat mix with very little rye. It's just different and you may not like it! Try the baking instructions and WAIT! let me know how it goes!

  91. Shery

    11. Nov, 2014

    I was so excited to find this recipe. I was recently diagnosed with a wheat allergy and desperately needed some real bread. Store bought "gluten free" is just not for me.

    I'm in the states and my first attempt converting the measurements was a flop. Bread deflated in oven. But not all was a loss because the flavor was great. The next day I purchased scales and proceeded just increasing the water to 300 g. Success!!! I can now have a fantastic alternative to wheat bread. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

  92. virtuousbread

    13. Nov, 2014

    Huzzah!!!!! So pleased. Thanks for letting us know. I love rye bread too. I think it is my very favourite. My VERY FAVOURITE rye is with fennel seeds and raisins. YUM/

  93. Fred Kopfler

    25. Nov, 2014

    This recipe was just what I was looking for -- 100% rye. My first try was a flop, but we are eating it anyway. The loaf did not rise. I used 3 cups of Hodgson Mill whole grain rye flour. I used a packet of Fleischmann's RapidRise Instant Yeast. I added half a cup of water with the yeast. Then another half cup with the 1 tsp. salt. This did not seem to be enough water since there was still some dry flour. I added another half cup and got a good dough, but it did not stick to the bowl, but came away cleanly. It did not rise in 2 hours in a warm room. I baked it anyway and it is soft and doughy in the center and the crust -- top and bottom -- is hard as a rock. The yeast was active because before adding the second cup water the initial water and yeast in the well in the flour had foamed up. Any suggestions of what I can try?

  94. virtuousbread

    26. Nov, 2014

    Dear Fred

    thanks for this. OK, a couple of things:

    1. Can you get any other brand of rye flour. I particualrly don't like Hodgson Mill. For some reason, the bread is always really sticky on the inside and it is REALLY dry. If you can try a different brand, I think you will find a difference.

    2. If it did not rise, just leave it longer - seriously

    3. If it is wetter, it will rise more - you should have to scrape it off the side of the bowl. Clean = too dry

    4. Do proof the instant (rapidrise) yeast when you are baking rye - for a good 10 minutes to get it really active

    Let me know!

  95. Kayla

    03. Dec, 2014

    Could I make this recipe in a bread machine?

  96. virtuousbread

    12. Dec, 2014

    I am not sure - never tried it. WOrth a try?!

  97. Ellen

    29. Dec, 2014

    We have rye berries we grew ourselves, in Portland, Oregon, and found your recipe when looking for ways to use them. We tested the recipe by making a 1/3 sized loaf in a fruitcake pan. We ground 1 cup flour (100 g) from whole berries using our burr coffee grinder on extra fine. We used 1 g dry yeast. Thank you for so vividly describing what the dough should look like, as I kept adding water until the dough turned sticky. We used 125 g water total. The dough filled the pan about halfway. It rose for 3 1/2 hours and got up to the top of the pan. We baked it at 400F for 30 minutes, removed it from the pan and baked 10 minutes more. Waited one day to eat any. Perfect! We'll definitely try this again with a full sized loaf, if we have enough rye.

  98. virtuousbread

    05. Jan, 2015

    Thank you SO MUCH for this. I love your message and am SO THRILLED that your bread turned out so well. I love the fact that you grow rye berries. I am living in Mexico City at the moment and the rye is diabolical. I have to buy a dreadful US brand (there is no mexican rye) and every time it is disappointing. Sigh. I miss good flour! Have a great time baking, Jane

  99. Sarah

    13. Jan, 2015

    Hearing so much about the difference in quality between UK rye and American rye, I'm wondering if anyone CAN recommend a brand of rye I they like in the U.S. I've seen and know of Bob's Red Mill and Arrowhead Mills [this is the one I've tried a few times - it doesn't have great rise, but I don't mind the flavor, etc.]. Any other recommendations?

  100. Frances

    23. Feb, 2015

    This is the best bread I have ever made or eaten. I am besotted by it! It is made even better by the fact that we have bought a milling machine (from Germany) and now mill our own rye grains. So the bread is extra fresh and 'singing'. Thank you for putting this online!

  101. virtuousbread

    24. Feb, 2015

    I am so pleased!!! Thank you for your message.

  102. Jules

    01. Mar, 2015

    I substituted half the rye flour for seeded and granary flour and I must say It came out beautifully - if a bit flat (I think my bread tin was a bit big!). And it was thoroughly delicious - couldn't wait 2 days to cut into it though! It was gone in a couple of hours! Thankyou for such a simple recipe :-)

  103. Jardine

    02. Mar, 2015

    I am in my 80s and this is the first time I have managed to make any, ANY, yeast bread successfully. Soda bread I can do but yeast... ?

    What a great recipe!

  104. virtuousbread

    03. Mar, 2015

    Terrific! I am so pleased to hear that. I just love that recipe too!

  105. virtuousbread

    03. Mar, 2015

    I am so delighted!!!!!!!!!

  106. Sophie

    24. Mar, 2015


    I tried this recipe last night, it only seemed to rise maybe 2cm over 3 hours, so not to the top of the pan, and i'd put oats on the to to stop the dough sticking to the smallish bag (which it didnt even get close to!) i'd used to cover, so couldnt see the small holes you mentioned in the recipe, luckly my other half is an ex baker so was able to tell me by sight and by proding it slightly!
    It seemed to bake nicely and the crust is lovely! but its really soft inside, have i just been too eager and cut into it too soon??(did that this morning while leaving to cool overnight) or does it need a longer bake?? (bits of the inside rolls into little balls as I cut it!)
    Due to a wheat intolarence this recipie is awsome for me! so glad i found this website!!
    As a first attempt at baking bread i'm fairly pleased, i just did a plain one as the recipe said and its seems a bit bland so maybe ill experiment a bit next time!!

  107. virtuousbread

    24. Mar, 2015

    Hi Sophie, how lovely to hear from you. Sometimes rye can take as much as 5 hours to rise so just be patient and let it do its thing. Or pop it in the fridge for 8 hours or so (all day or overnight). Rye does get gummy, partly because that is it's nature (the enzymes in the rye are different from that in wheat) and so either leave it for 2 days before cutting into it (that's what I do) or if you found yours is a little too "wet" bake it for a little longer - say another 10 minutes, covering the top if it's getting too brown. I am so pleased you like it! And remember if you have properly made bread with wheat you should not get a tummy ache. Make sure the wheat bread is made with excellent quality stone ground flour and that it rises for at least 3 hours (two hours first rise, 1 hour second rise) so use very little yeast! That way the gluten is all chewed up and easy to digest. Having said that, my fave IS rye but wheat sometimes makes a nice change!

  108. Patricia Wallner

    25. Mar, 2015

    I have been baking with sour dough starter for several months now, it's amazing. So far I've only tried 1/2 spelt and 1/2 rye flour bread but I want to try pure rye flour. I noticed that you mentioned 160gr refreshed starter to 240 gr. rye flour which is much more starter than I've used with the 1/2 spelt bread. Does rye take more starter? Can't wait to try it!

  109. virtuousbread

    25. Mar, 2015

    Dear Patricia

    Sadly there is no easy answer to that: it just depends what recipe you are using. The main point is that there is a trade off between the amount of starter you use and its performance. Starter is great - it contains very well fermented flour which is easy to digest. If you could make a bread just out of starter that would be marvellous. Too much starter = poor performance. Too little starter = poor performance. Rye can take more starter than wheat because rye is a different grain with different enzymes. However, if you tried to make a wheat loaf with that much starter it would possibly pretty ugly and because that is a wee bit too much starter for wheat. Have a look here to read more and let us know how you like the recipe! http://www.virtuousbread.com/bread-and-conversation/how-do-i-use-my-refreshed-sourdough/

  110. Lynsey

    01. Apr, 2015

    I attempted this last night and it looked lovely but was not cooked on the inside. It was still wet when I cut into it.
    I didn't see until today about leaving it 2days before cutting. Is there a reason for this?

  111. virtuousbread

    02. Apr, 2015

    Dear Lynsey

    the reason you leave rye for a couple of days is to let it dry out. it's a wet dough and, when rye is baked with yeast (vs sourdough) it can be gummy - that is a natural issue due to the characteristics of rye dough. Leaving it sorts that out. Having said that, ovens are all different and it could be that yours is running a little cool. The best way to check if bread is done is to get a probe thermometer. The internal temp of bread when it's done is 98 degrees C (at sea level). As for now, just wrap up your bread and leave it for a couple of days or toast it!

  112. Lynsey

    02. Apr, 2015

    Thankyou for your reply.
    I wish I hadn't thrown the first loaf away now haha.
    I have cut into it and toasted a slice or 2. Will the rest still dry out?

  113. Dixie

    04. Apr, 2015

    I'm a new at baking bread and have lots to learn.
    To mix the rye flour can I use the dough hook with my stand mixer?
    Thank you, the rye recipe is just what I was looking for.

  114. virtuousbread

    04. Apr, 2015

    Hi there, the paddle is more effective with rye but as it is a 30 second job you may find a spoon works just as well. Using a manual approach is ofter better at first because it enables you to adjust for texture more easily!

  115. Jonathan

    12. Apr, 2015

    Tried this recipe yesterday and what a superb recipe! Left the bread a day and it is delicious. I used Wholegrain Stoneground Rye flour from Talgarth Mill. Because it was Wholegrain I was concerned that the yeast amounts were too small so I used 3g Instant Yeast.
    The bread had a great rise but sunk back a bit in the middle after baking. Reading the comments I think the rise was too long. I will try my next one with a little less yeast and see what happens. Thanks for a great recipe.

  116. jörgen

    13. Apr, 2015

    Thanks for a great recipe.

    I have a challenge with the bread sticking to the tin (greasing it with sunflower oil and a brush). Should I try good old butter instead =)

    I'm currently doing it with a sour pre-dough, experimenting with the water ratio and adding some wheat flour, but my first experiment was 100% rye very close to your recipe.

    Thanks in advance

  117. jörgen

    14. Apr, 2015

    The bread didn't stick today, greasing with butter and did some adjustments to the rising.

    Thanks once again

  118. virtuousbread

    14. Apr, 2015

    Hey! That is such terrific news. The rise could have been too long OR there could have been too much dough in the tin? Rye is pretty fragile and you can never expect it to be as tall (or support a tall structure) like wheat. And (maybe I should say this in the recipe?) you don't need more yeast because it's whole meal. Simply it may need a bit more time rising and/or it may not get as tall and be a bit heavier. I use whole rye all the time and don't particularly notice a difference. If you want it a bit lighter, simply sieve some of the bran off (and put it in granola or something) and you get a lighter flour. Thanks for writing!

  119. virtuousbread

    14. Apr, 2015

    Hi there and thank you for writing! Coming from a German (or possibly Scandi?) I find this a great compliment. My mother is German (from the North) and I grew up on Rye and love it. Converting the English has been a challenge but they are coming round to it - especially when they have it properly made! Indeed, as you found (sorry for not writing earlier) greasing with a hard fat is better. Lard or butter are both excellent. They don't run down into the bottom of the tin - leaving the sides bare and pooling at the corners to fry the bread. If you are using a sour dough made of rye, see here for some ideas: http://www.virtuousbread.com/how-to-make-bread/recipies/sourdough-bread-the-way-we-make-it-at-virtuousbread-com/. I bake with a rye sourdough starter all the time and find it is the easiest way to translate any recipe (ANY RECIPE) from yeast to sourdough. Simply double the amount of fresh yeast called for and take that measurement in rye sourdough. Refresh the rye sourdough with about 25% of the wheat and 25% of the water and then, the next day, add the rest of the ingredients and bake as normal. You need a little longer at each rising time. Does that make sense? I hope so because it's really easy once you get your head around it!

  120. virtuousbread

    14. Apr, 2015


  121. Jonathan

    19. Apr, 2015

    Made a second knew of this today with 2g yeast. Just over 1.5 hrs rise. Perfect loaf this time. Looking forward to tasting tomorrow.

  122. virtuousbread

    20. Apr, 2015

    ooo! let us know!

  123. shailesh

    26. Apr, 2015

    what should be the prooving temperature and humidity?

  124. Stella

    03. May, 2015

    Tried your recipe several times already and decided to ask some questions;)

    1) My bread does rise perfectly, but when i put it in the oven it does drop a little bit. Is that normal? Or is it supposed to rise even more in the oven? I use oven and i checked it with thermometer it's 200 degrees. But I use not a tin but pyrex glass rectangular form. Does it make a difference?

    2) Can you explain a bit more about temperatures? Why is it important to keep exactly 200 degrees? What happens if I make less or more than that? I've seen in some comments you advised people to keep it 180 but i didn't quite understood what difference the temperature will make.

    PS. I used instant yeast

  125. virtuousbread

    05. May, 2015

    Dear Stella

    Thank you for your message. The rye bread will not do much more in the oven simply because the gluten is weak. It may drop a bit or it may rise a bit depending on how much it has risen outside the oven. It it has really risen (lots of holes) it may drop, if you are pushed for time and have to put it in the oven because you are running late, it may spring a bit (and crack on the top). So, what is happening sounds normal to me! Temperatures are in fact less important than you think - once you understand them. Bread does not bake like a cake and it needs a hot starting temperature. However, rye bread is dense so there are not lots of air holes that help the bread bake from the inside. Thee more viscous the dough, the more time it will take to bake and the lower your end temperature will need to be so that the bread does not burn. Thus, if you are doing a light, airy white bread with lots of holes, you can bake it at 260 for 10-25 minutes depending on the bread because the hot air helps the bread bake. If you are baking danish rye which is more like cake batter you start it high (230) and then immediatley lower it to 180 to bake for 50-60 minutes because it DOES bake through like a cake. And then there are all sorts in between. 200 degrees is a good "all rounder" and if you find it works for you - great. If not, experiment by putting the bread in at a higher temp for a shorter time - or by baking at a higher temp for 10-15 minutes and then lowering it for a short time. A probe thermometer should register 98 degrees C in the centre of the loaf to show the bread is done! I hope this helps and does not leave you more confused!

  126. virtuousbread

    05. May, 2015

    Dear Shellesh, thank you for this. Sadly there is no "right" answer. You can put the dough in the fridge at 5 degrees and it will take 8 hours to be ready for the oven or you can leave it on the counter for 3-5 hours depending on the room temp. On a humid day bread will take (slightly) longer. At a higher altitude bread will take (slightly) less time. The only stable temp/humidity is either in a controlled proofing chamber or the fridge. So, if you need consistency (and you are at home where a proofing chamber would be a bit large) pop it in the fridge. If you are around to keep an eye on it (as seasons go and temp/humidity vary) you can do it on the counter!

  127. Elizabeth

    20. May, 2015

    Hello Jane,
    my dough is over the fridge and will leave it there until it rises. It's my first attempt with your recipe and l hope it will work for me, as l am using that flour you so dislike...
    the fact is that now l'm in Mexico city too, and l couldn't find any other. Not even fresh yeast! so l had to use that Tradipan and added a little honey, really less than a teaspoon.
    I'm now amazed and suspicious, because the dough raised in no more than 20 minutes in the bowl!
    l put it now in 2 tins, greased with butter and very loose. It's really fluffy and sticky, and... i don't know what's coming out of this!!

    i used to bake bread some years ago, wheat and oats. As you well know, rye is not a grain used here. l love making bread and l want to attend to one of your classes... in a near future.

    So, of course l will tell you about the outcome, but now l want to ask you if you can find another brand of rye flour somewhere around and if you consider Tradipan yeast not being so bad.


  128. virtuousbread

    20. May, 2015

    Hi!!! How are you? You can find different brands of rye *sometimes* at Green Corner (Polanco and Coyoacan) and other health food shops. Tradipan is fine but actually, here in the DF you can get fresh yeast at the supermarket. Go to the bakery counter (where you would have the bread bagged and priced) and just ask for fresh yeast. Let me know what happens! Don't cut into it until the next day and remember here in the DF bread like rye is particularly sticky because we cannot get the internal temp more than 97 degrees and fully baked bread is 98. Altitude. Things rise faster and bake more slowly. Hu?

  129. Elizabeth

    20. May, 2015

    Hello Ann, thanks for your quick answer!
    Actually l went to the supermarket and asked for the fresh yeast at the panadería, but they didn't have any left, and l had no time to look in some other place, that's why l took the risk.
    The bread took around 50 minutes, didn't sink, and kept it wrapped in a kitchen towel. Until tomorrow morning! so l will tell you what's the taste. I added some caraway.

    That's the news for the baking, now tomorrow the flavor and inner consistency! Thanks for your info!

  130. virtuousbread

    21. May, 2015

    ooo! let us know!

  131. Elizabeth

    21. May, 2015

    OK, l just ate a slice for breakfast. It broke a little while cutting, but l really don't have a bread knife, so l don't blame the bread. It is sticky but l toasted it and tastes real good!
    It will be my breakfast all these days l'm dieting, l'm happy about it!

    l will experiment more as soon as i finish this one!
    cheers, Anne!

  132. Elizabeth

    21. May, 2015

    l'm so sorry for having mistaken your name.... shame on me

    yes, thanks for the tips, l will do that! :)

  133. Linda

    22. May, 2015

    fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have been trying for months 100% rye recipes. Looking no longer. Perfect, and quick. In Israel I had to add about double the water to get to the recommended consistency. Your instructions and the comments insured that even the first time out there was no mistake. THANK YOU

  134. virtuousbread

    22. May, 2015

    ooo! that makes me so happy!

  135. virtuousbread

    22. May, 2015

    no problem about the name!!!

  136. Carika Rabe

    29. May, 2015

    Tried the original recipe and even though it didn't rise that much the bread still came out soooo good! Really moist and very filling! Just what I was looking for! Thanx for sharing your recipe!

  137. Liz

    30. May, 2015

    In Australia. Tried the recipe and needed to add a fair bit more water. The result was absolutely delicious. Hubby steadfastly resists eating any bread that is not a bleached white colour. He cautiously agreed to try a mouthful. We have a convert. He enthusiastically said he is happy to have this bread henceforth as his staple instead of bleached white. I am delighted all round with the results. Thank you.

  138. virtuousbread

    31. May, 2015

    ooo! so pleased!

  139. virtuousbread

    31. May, 2015

    ooo! delighted and specifically so that you have a convert on your hands! Isn't it fascinating that you had to add so much more water - I cannot say how pleased I am that you just did it. Rye is particularly tricksy in its ability to absorb water depending on where it comes from. YAY!

  140. Liz

    01. Jun, 2015

    It was probably a bit much water. I started with the 250 ml and have no idea how much more I added. It was more than 50ml but I doubt it was more than 100ml. Unless it's about pastry-cooking that requires precise measurements, I tend to use recipes as guides. As you said, flours vary so much with all the varieties of grain and milling processes. So I kept gradually adding until the mix looked wet enough to absorb sufficient water to prevent the dough drying out. The bread did flatten a little during the cook so I gather that indicates I added a little much water? But I did use the yeast as stated, no more, no less. The flavour and texture were outstanding. I think it's a matter now of adjusting water amounts and dough density until the bread looks like yours? Again, thank you for this recipe.

  141. Lynsey

    03. Jun, 2015

    Tried this again today and was a total disaster lol.
    Didn't rise much. Prob should of left it longer. Then sunk down even more when baking. It tasted lovely but too hard to slice haha.
    I may of over baked too.

  142. Di

    04. Jul, 2015

    HI, Could I use this recipe fora bread machine?

  143. virtuousbread

    05. Jul, 2015

    Thank you for your message! I am so sorry, I have no idea, I have never tried it in a machine. I don't see why not - test it out and see how it goes? Let us know!

  144. Mslilypad

    17. Aug, 2015

    The internal temperature of bread should be 210 degrees taken with probe. Below that the bread will sink and or turn out gummy.

  145. virtuousbread

    17. Aug, 2015

    Dear Milly, I really should have put "centigrade". I think you will find 98 C is the same as 208 F. Thank you for the reminder to always write what scale I am using!

  146. Julian

    20. Aug, 2015


    I have been trying to develop a loaf that is essentially wheat free, diary free and sugar free and can be made in my Morphy Richards breadmaker(I know, sounds crazy).

    Anyway, I've been adding rye and spelt to a modified Doves Farm white / brown flour mix recipe for quite a while, with mediocre results, but I wanted to try with just rye and spelt, so this article really enthused me!

    I tried this recipe (loosely adapted from a Nigel Slater one):

    rye flour 250g
    spelt flour 250g

    easy-bake dried yeast 10g
    salt 1 tsp
    warm water 320ml
    honey 3 tbsp

    I baked this in my breadmaker using the dough programme (only one mix/knead) for the mixing and prove and then using the 'extrabake' programme to bake the loaf for 1 hour 40 mins. I did have to add about 30ml extra water at the mixing stage as the dough was too dry.

    While edible as toast and pretty tasty, the result from my breadmaker was basically a brick :-( Clearly there is something preventing almost any rise at all.

    I then tried increasing the yeast to 15g and also making the liquid one third soy milk (all warmed) but this had no effect, I still got a brick.

    I was wondering whether any of you seasoned rye and spelt bakers could provide any advice on what I might do to improve the rise on this very basic loaf.

    ps. *All* advice gratefully received (or even totally different recipes).

    Many thanks!


  147. virtuousbread

    20. Aug, 2015

    Dear Julian, because I have never used a bread maker in my life I cannot help where that is concerned. I would not increase the yeast. You are already using a lot. For 500 g flour, for example, I would use 2.5 g of instant yeast or 5 g dry active yeast. However, rye is really absorbent and if the dough is not super wet, it DOES bake like a brink. Have you considered NOT using your machine? That way you can knead the dough (expect it to be VERY STICKY because of the rye) and adjust the water by hand as you go to get a very soft dough. Then just pop it in a bread tin and wait for it to come to the top and bake it.

  148. Sheila Job

    04. Sep, 2015

    Hi! I'm going to try this recipe - it's certainly simple and the bread looks delish. Would it be possible to substitute the light rye flour for dark?

  149. virtuousbread

    04. Sep, 2015

    Dear Sheila

    you can absolutely substitute light rye! Remember: wet wet wet dough!

  150. Wendy

    15. Sep, 2015

    Hi I came across your site and recipes looking for gluten free and alternate bread recipes.
    I currently have two loaves in the 'rising 2-3 hours' stage so will see how they go once baked.
    Easy recipe so look forward to testing the bread!

  151. virtuousbread

    17. Sep, 2015

    how did it go????? Sorry I don't really do any gluten free as am rather committed to gluten. There is a great recipe for Farinata - made of chick pea flour but it's hardly bread...http://www.virtuousbread.com/bread-and-conversation/farinata-a-gluten-free-bread-from-sicily-and-beyond/

  152. ssplash

    19. Jan, 2016

    Hi, Jane! I keep on making rye bread thanks to your lovely recipe :) I just had a question for you. My bread seems to rise to perfection in about two and a half hours or so, but I was wondering if it was a good idea to let it ferment for longer. Is it better in terms of flavour and/or digestion? I use dark rye flour, and if I let it ferment for a few more hours, it still keeps the shape, and doesn't seem to sink in the middle. Please, let me know your thoughts, if you get a minute. Thank you!

  153. virtuousbread

    19. Jan, 2016

    Hey! Thanks for writing. I am so glad you like rye - it's my very favourite every day bread! You can let it rise longer and yes digestability does improve. If you want, you can put it in the fridge to rise - it takes about 8 hours. Then, I take it out of the fridge, pre heat the oven and stick it in cold. Seriously. That way I can make it in the morning, bake it at night and cut into it the next day!

  154. Rachael

    24. Jan, 2016

    Hello, did anyone try this in a bread machine in the end? Thinking of trying it this morning.

  155. virtuousbread

    24. Jan, 2016

    Hi Rachel, I don't know - it's worth a try - the worst thing that happens is that it does not work! And let us know!!!

  156. virtuousbread

    24. Jan, 2016

    Hey! That is a great question. We have all flours in all classes - 100% of the time trainers will have white and whole wheat and depending on what they bake and teach they are likely to have rye and spelt. I have all of them (plus pizza and ciabatta flour). You can use whatever flour you like, whenever you like! Of course, traditional Italian and French bread is made with white flour, but there is no reason you could not make them with whole in the actual class. German bread is heavier - with lots of whole flour (wheat, rye, and spelt) and although bagels are traditionally white, there is no reason you cannot do whole! So please feel like you can come and learn about the flour you like to use at home. You are welcome!

  157. Rachael

    25. Jan, 2016

    Didn't work as well in machine in afraid.

  158. Dinah

    25. Jan, 2016

    Thank you for the (well described) recipe. It was really simple to make and came out great!

  159. virtuousbread

    26. Jan, 2016

    It's a pleasure! Thank you for letting us know!

  160. virtuousbread

    26. Jan, 2016

    Oof, that is a shame - thanks for being the one to experiment. Now we can definitively say no! Sorry for that! I don't have a machine to try it out on!

  161. ssplash

    29. Jan, 2016

    Hi, Jane. Sorry for not answering to your kind reply. I don't know why I didn't get notified of your answer! I will leave it longer to rise when I can.

    Rachael! I ALWAYS bake my bread in a bread machine! I've done it for years now, and it comes out beautiful :) I have a Lidl machine, but I don't use any of the standard settings. I always choose the "bake" programme (number 12 in the Lidl bread maker), and set the timer to allow between 3 to 5 hours of rising (I'll try to leave it longer now, after Jane's reply). I choose the dark browning level.

    Basically, I prepare the dough by hand following Jane's instructions to the T, and then place the dough in the machine and leave it to rise. I don't use the kneading paddles, so they are always off and kept in my cupboard. I experimented with the gluten free, the whole wheat and pasta kneading programmes in the past, but the bread never rose nor baked as it does now, so I stick to this routine: mix by hand and rise and bake on the machine :) The bread bakes lovely and it tastes fantastic, although you do need to leave it to settle, as Jane explains. I usually leave it baking the day or the night before, and eat it for breakfast.

    I use double the amount of flour (whole rye) and all other ingredients, for a bigger load - 600gr, and I like the bread a little bit softer, so I add 100 ml extra of water, but that's just me, the rye flour is from Spain, where I live. For some reason, fresh yeast caused the bread to sink in the middle, but I want to try it again. I've used both instant and baker's yeast with great results. It seems that 1 hour (the machine's setting) is sufficient. I also think it does the bread well to settle for that optional extra hour the machine offers to keep the bread warm.

    I encourage people to use the machine is there's no oven available (I don't have one). You might have to experiment a bit with the amount of water, but once you get it right, you get really tasty and beautiful bread :)

  162. ssplash

    30. Jan, 2016

    Hi, Jane/Rachael

    Just to let you know that today I used a different kind of rye flour (apparently it comes from Finland), and my usual 100 ml of extra water was too much! It seems that Spanish rye is very thirsty!!! Actually, when I started to stir it, I already noticed that the dough was too wet. So, as Jane so often says, always mix and gauge how much extra water you might need, if any. Good luck with the bread machine. Cheers!

  163. virtuousbread

    30. Jan, 2016

    oooo - how interesting! was it good?

  164. ssplash

    01. Feb, 2016

    Beautiful bread! Not bitter, very full taste, kept that baking smell even after a few days. Yummy! :) (don't know why, but I don't get your email notifications ...)

  165. Laura

    25. Feb, 2016

    I made this today; It's delicious! I added sugar beet syrup (there's no other molasses in germany) and whole toasted hazelnuts. Mine didn't rise as much as yours though - admittedly I took it out of the pan when it was still warm and it collapsed a little then. I was impatient ;)
    I actually might use some more dough for one pan next time to get some more bread. It's a wonderful base recipe and I'll probably try out many different additions.

  166. virtuousbread

    07. Mar, 2016

    Thank you! So pleased you like it.

  167. Evie

    08. Mar, 2016

    Hi there,

    My first ever bread and rye bread and it was edible and tasty but it did not rise to the top of the loaf tin. Crusty outside and moist but cooked inside so not too bad for a first attempt.

    Would appreciate helpful comments on how I can get it to rise more both before and whilst baking?

  168. virtuousbread

    10. Mar, 2016

    Hi Evie, how big is your tin? The dough should come about 2/3 up the sides of the tin and then rise from there.

  169. Cris

    11. Mar, 2016

    Hi there,

    I noticed that many comments are about the bread being too wet inside after baking. I have tried pure rye baking many times and bumped into this problem repeatedly, except when adding some wheat flour. Then I tried this trick: Put a dish of water in the oven while it is baking. This prevents the bread from crusting over too quickly, thus letting out more moisture. Now my loaves are properly cooked inside, without needing to add wheat flour. Have just made up a double batch of this recipe, with a little extra flour and it is rising nicely in a dome shape...let see what happens int he oven.

  170. Shelly

    18. Mar, 2016

    YAYYYY thank you for such a simple recipe I knew it was possible to make bread without a bread maker or dough hook!!

  171. virtuousbread

    18. Mar, 2016

    YAAAAYYYYY - you most certainly can!

  172. Sage

    23. Mar, 2016

    American measurements
    Rye flower 2 C
    Yeast 1 tsp
    Water 1 C
    Salt 2 tsp

    Converting a weight to a volume is very difficult without weighing and measuring. Most of the Internet converters are way off for the flower and water. This could be the reason for so many uncooked centers.

  173. Melissa

    29. Mar, 2016

    Is it me or is 1.5g of instant yeast ridiculously small? I struggled to get the scales to Detect the weight??!

  174. virtuousbread

    29. Mar, 2016

    Ha! i did laugh...it IS ridiculously small and it is about 1/2 a teaspoon!

  175. Melissa

    29. Mar, 2016

    Ah ahh! Okay 1/2tsp will remember for next time! I'm not sure how much I ended up with because I weighed it straight into the flour then realised it wasn't registering so had to try and scoop it out! ;) It rose lovely pre cooking but has come out of my oven totally flat with a crack down it. Any tips?
    Thank you :) xx

  176. R Kelly

    14. May, 2016

    Well I tried the recipe tonight (thank you). The dough did rise but the middle was a bit stodgy. I will try again using more yeast and some honey. Although it didn´t quite look like yours, it was, nonetheless, delicious. The only problem with fresh tasty bread is that it was gone within 10 minutes... but I still have my wine.

  177. virtuousbread

    14. May, 2016

    huzzah! next time make four!

  178. Jennifer Janes

    09. Jun, 2016

    Hi! I recently discovered your excellent and helpful site, when googling for a rye-bread recipe.The first twice I made the bread, it was perfect and so easy! I made it with whole rye flour as couldn't find light rye here ( in Israel).
    The second time, I used a different make of flour, and it was a disaster! I had added extra water, as the dough was far too dry, but though it baked for about an hour, and seemed done, when cut open it was soggy, and although I managed to toast some of it into something edible, I eventually chucked the rest.
    After reading comments on the site about various rye breads, I baked the next attempt for the first 10 minutes on 230C and also didnt cut the bread for a day. It was much better! However I shall try to always use the first sort of flour!!
    Thanks for the excellent site!

  179. virtuousbread

    09. Jun, 2016

    Thank you! It's incredible, isn't it, how different flour performs. Also, just so you know, Rye bread hates warm weather. Anything above about 28 degrees and it will rise (quickly) and then it will collapse in the oven. If you are in a hot weather season now, cover the dough and put it in the fridge for 8 hours (overnight or all day) and then bake it.

  180. Jennifer Janes

    09. Jun, 2016

    Thanks so much for the advice about the weather! it is indeed very hot here now, and the bread did rise very fast, so I shall definitely follow your advice with my next batch!
    I suppose that's why rye bread is more common in Scandinavia, Germany etc....

  181. Tracy

    25. Jul, 2016

    Hi Finally I found a Rye only recipe. I am a novice bread maker and tried this simple recipe last night but only have wholemeal Rye flour. It came out Ok but nothing like your picture. Should i do anything different with Wholemeal Rye? i added another 10ml water as was stiff, but it was then sticky - seems ok but very flat and very small- it did rise slightly after 3 hours. Alo if I wanted to make wholemeal Spelt and Rye bread what quantities would i use ( no white flour) thanks very much :)

  182. virtuousbread

    25. Jul, 2016

    Hi Tracy, with whole rye you often need to add more water. The dough should not be stiff AT ALL. It should be very soft. Use equal amounts of flour and water and proof the yeast first and this will help the rise. Also, don't cut into it the day you bake it, leave it to settle for a day or two. If you want spelt and rye you can do it in any quantities you like. There are no hard and fast rules. The more spelt you add (from 95% spelt to 50% spelt) you have to knead the dough. Less than 50% spelt and you don't. You will have to adjust the water as you go. Spelt is not that absorbent and rye is, so just put water in until you have a workable dough. Remember the texture of rye is different!

  183. Tracy

    25. Jul, 2016

    Thanks for the reply, I made another one today I was delighted to see it rise far bigger than the 1st one, within 2 hours it was over the top of the tin!! I was beside myself with excitement. I heated the oven 200 and in in went middle shelf, BUT it has dipped in the middle (sunk) :( no idea why I used same ingredients only thing I chnGed was covering with cling film instead of a bag, and that seemed to help the rise. Why did it sink once in the oven.? I used just 250ml water this time as it seemed sticky and soft, maybe too sticky I can hardly keep it in my hand to get it out of the bowl and shape for the tin...what am I doing wrong? Maybe some pictures would help us to see the consistency and other stages of the process? I'm determined to have a loaf like your picture!!!! Off to shop for more the flour whilst I await your reply :)

  184. virtuousbread

    25. Jul, 2016

    Hi there, it's so simple - truly it is - and sadly photos don't help because it's a texture thing. I have photographed the dough a million times but it does not help! I am surprised that, with exactly the same ingredients, measures, and process that the dough behaved in a different way. Same flour too? Your dough should be soft. Rye is curious - in that it is sticky and slippery at the same time. If your hands are wet, it's slippery. If they are dry, it is sticky. Same with the dough. You should be able to push though the dough really easily. You should be able to gather it up and mould it (very wet hands - keep a bowl of water near by) and put it in the tin. You could have too much dough for your tin - that would cause it to sink. You could have too much yeast in the dough and/or it could be rising too quickly. Rye hates the heat. It is a hot day? Anything above 26-28 degrees and the rye will play up at which point it's better to make the dough, tin it, and put it in the fridge for at least 8 hours to rise. It needs to rise slowly or it burns through it's gluten and cannot hold itself up. If it has over proofed (starting to droop before you put it in the oven, too many holes on the surface) it will sink in the oven. Also, check oven temp - is it at 200? Also you can try baking it at a higher temp. 230 for 10 minutes and 200 for 30. Did the plastic stick to the surface of the dough and did the surface come off when you took the plastic off? In that case, you have removed the top structure and there is nothing to keep the gas inside.....Lots of ideas for you but no answers. Can you come to a class? We do rye in the basic bread class...

  185. Kayamumma

    05. Sep, 2016

    Brilliant! Thank you finally found a Rye bread recipe that works!
    I made it in my breadmaker. And the whole loaf was demolished by my family in one day.

    Just about to bake again with double quantities... Wish me well.

  186. virtuousbread

    08. Sep, 2016

    Brilliant! I am so pleased!

  187. LA

    10. Sep, 2016

    Love this recipe, the simplicity of the ingredients, and the flavor - thank you!

    Those having trouble with the bread cooking to a crust on the outside and being uncooked inside - have you tried lowering the baking temperature? 400d F seems very high to me for baking (or is that because I'm not accustomed to baking with rye)?

  188. Paula

    11. Sep, 2016

    Kayamumma, what adjustments, if any did you make to the recipe. I have a bread machine but also live at a high altitude. So if I have the recipe I can make the necessary adjustments. My first loaf was crumbly & didn't rise much. the second was a bit better. Flavour both times was fine. Today I'm going to have another attempt.

  189. virtuousbread

    12. Sep, 2016

    Hi Laura

    In fact, 400 F is about the minimum temp to bake bread. I often bake it much hotter. Starting at, say 450 for 10 minutes and then reducing to 400 for 30. If you bake any lower, you get a very thick, heavy crust. If the rye is not well risen, there is not enough air in the middle for it to bake through quickly and then there will be issues with a high temp - it will burn before it's baked. However, if it's well risen, there will be no problem getting it to bake through before it burns!

  190. SHERENE

    14. Sep, 2016

    Hi there I hope you can help me.

    I have been using your recipe for about 2 months now and really enjoy it. I just seem to have 1 lingering problem.

    No matter what I do I end up with a pasty bread. I have tried leaving it in longer (burnt and pasty) or lowering the temp and lengthening the time to as much as 1 hour and 15 mins.
    My last loaf was perfect on the night that i made it, not pasty at all, but next morning the exact same loaf had become pasty.

    The only solution so far is to toast it for a few mins to dry it out. Can you give any suggestions?

    Kind Regards

  191. virtuousbread

    14. Sep, 2016

    Dear Sherene

    one of the features of rye is the gumminess which some people like and some don't. the only way to get around that is to make a pure sourdough rye (there are recipes on the website) because the acidity of the sourdough "dries" the rye out. If you don't want to go there you can try the following:

    1. Change the brand of rye flour you are using. They are vastly different. Some I love and some I loathe.
    2. Make sure the dough is properly risen (little holes all over the top before you bake it). The more aerated it is as dough, the faster it will bake and the less gummy it will be
    3. Keep it for 2 days (wrap it in a tea towel and leave it on the counter - no plastic) before you cut into it
    4. Soak some seeds, drain them and add them to your dough - they will absorb some of the gumminess

    All of these will help! Let me know.

  192. Steve Curtis

    25. Sep, 2016

    We tried it and it worked well with the small exceptin of very slightly underdone.

    Other than that it worked well

    Steve & Brendie

  193. Robert Smith

    23. Oct, 2016

    Hi, Made a loaf as per your instructions, result was 100%.
    To make a larger loaf can I just double the ingredients and what would the basking time be. thanks

  194. virtuousbread

    23. Oct, 2016

    Hi there, yes you can just double everything up although a larger loaf is hilariously tricky to shape and put in a tin! You may want to make 2 (or 4 or however many tins fit in your oven) loaves? If you want to bake a bigger loaf, the baking time should be the same. I am glad you like the bread!

  195. Delores

    02. Feb, 2017

    King Arthur Flour sells a "white rye flour" that says it has the bran and germ removed. Would this be the same kind of rye flour available in Scandinavia and the UK?

  196. virtuousbread

    02. Feb, 2017

    Hi there, white rye is called "light rye" in Europe. In Europe you can buy "dark rye" and "light rye". Most supermarkets only sell dark rye and if the bag is simply called "rye" you can assume it's dark rye (bran and germ intact). They you prefer light rye and can only get dark, simply sieve the flour. The sieve will catch the germ and the bran (you can put it on cereal, it's really good for you).

  197. Rachel

    05. Feb, 2017

    Hi there, I made this bread today, the only change was that I used 2/3 rye and 1/3 spelt. This is the first time I have ever made bread and it came out delicious! Will definately be making this again. Perfect with a bowl of veg soup! Very impressed, great recipe.

  198. virtuousbread

    06. Feb, 2017


  199. Christian Güttler

    16. Feb, 2017

    Hi all bread lovers,
    If anyone would like a Danish type of rye bread I have a guideline and recipe with video on my blog here: http://www.ryebread-recipe.com

  200. Andrea

    16. Mar, 2017

    This recipe is a TOTAL WIN. We LOVE rye bread and try to avoid wheat as much as possible. I'm confident in the kitchen and can bake and pretty much make anything but sheesh, who has time to make AND MAINTAIN a sourdough starter? Not this girl!

    This is literally the easiest bread recipe EVER. Easier than banana bread, even.

    I will be making this bread from now on. Thanks!

  201. virtuousbread

    16. Mar, 2017

    THANK YOU!!!!! Thank you for telling us that. It is our VERY FAVE recipe too. And yes, easier even than muffins. Children can do it! Old people can do it! (no kneading - hard on old wrists) and it's just SO DELICIOUS. Thank you! Enjoy.

  202. Ben Hamilton

    03. Jul, 2017

    Thank you for the wonderful recipe! I've tried it couple of times though not as a loaf, as I didn't want to risk it in my old oven, so I made it as a flat bread instead. Turns out wonderful))

    In your opinion, will the bread be equally tasty and well baked if I substitute buckwheat for rye flour? Thank you!

  203. virtuousbread

    03. Jul, 2017

    Dear Ben

    I am glad you have it working for you!

    Buckwheat has no gluten in it and so it will not really rise at all - even less than rye. worth a try - or mix buckwheat with wheat or rye. Let us know!

  204. Rute

    22. Jul, 2017

    Hi Jane,
    Thank you so much for this recipe, I'm so happy with it!
    I came across it a couple of days ago whilst searching for 100% rye bread recipes, of which yours is the only one I've found so far!
    Due to my current dietary needs, I can only eat pure rye bread and your post was like a ray of sunshine... so simple to make and easy to follow the instructions! :)
    I'm a good cook and can make some mean patisserie, but this was my first attempt at baking bread and it went better than myself and the hubby expected!
    We followed your instructions to a T; and the end product, though not perfect (was a little brick-y in size - didn't rise that much - and a tiny bit moist after baking), was quite tasty, especially the crust.
    I live in Northern Ireland and the only brands available at my local Tesco were Doves Farm Organic Wholemeal Rye Flour (dark rye) & Allinson Easy Bake Yeast (dry). I used Fry Light Olive Oil spray to coat the loaf tin and it didn't stick, by the way!
    I used a large, metal loaf tin (2lbs). I think it was too big for your measurements, as before proofing the dough only came up until probably 1/3 of the tin; and after 3 hours rising it had only come up at about 2/3 of the tin (if that much... though it had bubbles on the top as you said). The bread ended up flatter than expected.
    After baking it at 200 C fan for 45 minutes, when I tapped the bottom it sounded hollow, so I though it was baked through; but it was still a tiny bit moist inside when I cut it (5 minutes after taking it of the oven, the only instruction we didn't follow through with! It smelt too good!).
    Despite these little fails, the texture and flavour were awesome and for me it has proved a really yummy bread, which I want to start doing now; instead of eating the commercial pumpernickel that I buy at Tesco, which I don't appreciate much.
    So my questions are:
    1) Should I buy a 1lb tin, or just double up the quantities next time to adapt to my 2lb tin?
    2) I used only the 3g yeast you say in the ingredients list. Should I put more next time, to help it rise better? Or (because it's dark rye) should I sift it to get a "lighter" flour and that would do the trick?
    3) Should I allow more time for rising? Make it 5 hours?
    4) Because the bread sounded hollow when tapped, I think I baked it for the right amount of time. Would you recommend that I simply leave it wrapped in a towel for 2 days before cutting it the next time - or should I bake it for 10 extra minutes as well?
    5) My hubby loved the crust, and said overall it was okay; but he was a bit disenchanted with the flavour. White rolls are his definite fav, so I think he disliked the earthier and denser tones of the rye (not enough sweetness and fluffiness, I think). Is there anything I could add to this recipe - that doesn't involve sugars, though - that would make it more palatable or interesting to people used to white bread?
    Thanks again :)

  205. virtuousbread

    22. Jul, 2017

    This is great - I am pleased. Here are my answers to your very good questions:

    1) Should I buy a 1lb tin, or just double up the quantities next time to adapt to my 2lb tin?

    You can just double up the quantities! In fact, why not get a bunch of tins and bake a bunch of loaves at one time. They freeze beautifully and that way you can do lots of loaves for one turn of oven!

    2) I used only the 3g yeast you say in the ingredients list. Should I put more next time, to help it rise better? Or (because it's dark rye) should I sift it to get a "lighter" flour and that would do the trick?

    Yes...but....You don't want more yeast than you need. yeast is simply something we only need a small amount of. Like salt (and lots of other things) we just need what we need. Further, you want the bread to take a long time to proof. That way the flour is well broken down and easier to digest (the main feature of sourdough bread is the digestibility). I don't find a huge difference between dark and light rye - they can both rise into surprisingly light loaves. If in doubt, add a bit more water so your dough is really REALLY soft and wet. When you pick it up and move it from one hand to another, the dough should be so oft and wet that you leave a hand print in it from just holding the shaped dough.

    3) Should I allow more time for rising? Make it 5 hours?

    In theory the more the better (until it has over proofed and collapsed). If it's cool it will take 5 hours. In the fridge it will take about 8 hours. On a hot day it could take as little as 2 hours. Rye does not do too well with hot days, though. Anything over about 28 degrees and it begins to underperform (rise quickly and collapse in the oven).

    4) Because the bread sounded hollow when tapped, I think I baked it for the right amount of time. Would you recommend that I simply leave it wrapped in a towel for 2 days before cutting it the next time - or should I bake it for 10 extra minutes as well?

    It's hard to tell with rye sometimes. The very best thing to do is get a probe thermometer. Bread is 98 degrees C on the inside when it is done. Rye bread is sticky by nature. It is a little less sticky when it is made with a sourdough starter, rather than wheat. Try to leave it for at least 24 hours if you can! I think it's at its best 2 days after baking it.

    5) My hubby loved the crust, and said overall it was okay; but he was a bit disenchanted with the flavour. White rolls are his definite fav, so I think he disliked the earthier and denser tones of the rye (not enough sweetness and fluffiness, I think). Is there anything I could add to this recipe - that doesn't involve sugars, though - that would make it more palatable or interesting to people used to white bread?

    That's a tough one and I would say keep starving him of the white and giving him the rye. I love 100% rye - it's my favourite bread and I find white bread dull. So, horses for courses. You can add spices (a pinch of cinnamon or ginger powder or cardamom or cumin or coriander - just a half a teaspoon at first to see how you like it) you can add raisins (fennel seed with raisins is good) you can add treacle or honey. Rye does take flavours well because it has a strong flavour of its own.

  206. virtuousbread

    22. Jul, 2017

    ps - rye always flat! Gluten too weak to support a dome shaped top crust!

  207. Rute

    26. Jul, 2017

    Hi Jane,
    Sorry for the delay in thanking you for your answers, and also for the immense privilege of having my questions turned into a post here at "Virtuous Bread"! :)
    I have followed the advice you gave me and I'm so happy to report back that they worked a treat!!
    I bought two 1lb tins and did double the recipe, so I could store some bread. The only difference was that I kept the amount of salt for doubling, as I felt my first bread was too salty with the 6 g.
    It worked really well; the dough was at the expected 2/3 of the tins before proofing and had risen to the very top after 2 hours, with lots of holes. I also followed your suggestion about spices to add flavour, and put a heaped teaspoon (about 2 g) of ground cinnamon in one of the loafs.
    Both loafs baked perfectly for the 45 min you recommended and I wrapped them in tea towels for 24h before cutting. They were less flat this time around and had a better spring to it. They were simply divine - especially the cinnamon one, which my hubby really liked toasted with some butter :)
    Thank you again so much for this article and your helpful advice. I'm now baking every week and my bread is so much more tastier than the stuff I bought in the shops!

  208. Janet morris

    31. Jul, 2017

    Made your rye bread. Will certainly make this again. The only thing I would alter is a bit less salt. I used light rye flour and found the texture not as heavy as bought rye bread and it was lovely and moist. You can get this flour any where in England. Thank you

  209. Steven

    02. Aug, 2017

    I improved my loaves by mixing in yeast withe water and storing until dissolved then adding to the flour. Maybe it activates yeast or ensures an even distribution.

  210. virtuousbread

    02. Aug, 2017

    Dear Steven

    that can help a lot with rye. have you seen our post on yeast? Have a look! http://www.virtuousbread.com/bread-and-conversation/the-four-different-forms-of-yeast-and-how-to-use-them/ Thank you for writing.

  211. virtuousbread

    02. Aug, 2017

    Dear Janet, Thank you for writing to let us know. That is excellent! I am so pleased you found it light and moist. That is what you are aiming for. Most people are so surprised at how light rye can be - they associate it with the bricks of pumpernickel they get at the shops - delicious in its own way but not for everyone. As re salt - that is a wonderful observation. Every recipe is a guideline and we have to made adjustments as we go to suit our tastes. Thanks!

  212. Angie

    19. Aug, 2017


    So I tried to make this bread by following your recipe, but I couldn't get my dough to rise. I have set my yeast properly I'm sure but it just didn't seem to rise :( Do you know why or what should I do?

  213. virtuousbread

    19. Aug, 2017

    I am not sure....it could be that the dough was too dry. Try not to worry about making it too wet. if you have really absorbent rye, try adding as much water as flour. I know this may sound alarming but usually rye will not rise if the dough is too dry. Be patient too - either leave it at room temp for up to 5 hours or pop it in the fridge over night.

  214. Norman

    29. Aug, 2017

    Followed instructions to the T. Result: disaster. Loaf did not come out as the picture. I've noticed so many commented the same thing. Is there perhaps something wrong with the recipe or instructions?

  215. virtuousbread

    01. Sep, 2017

    Hello! Well, I am very sorry about that. I assure you the instructions are not wrong. Some have commented on difficulty, others have commented on success. I wish I could show you - I know many people have difficulty with rye and the usual suspects are: yeast not proofed; dough too dry. Do try again!

  216. vanessa

    08. Nov, 2017

    Hi, I was wondering if you had a recipe for 100% rye flat bread?
    Best wishes

  217. virtuousbread

    10. Nov, 2017

    Hi Vanessa, I do not have a recipe for 100% rye crackers. I am so sorry.

  218. WC

    17. Dec, 2017

    First off, thank you for providing the recipe! The loaf pictured looks amazing for a 100% rye bread. As a vegan, I love that you don't include any unnecessary fats or dairy products! Some tips for those having difficulty with their breads rising:

    Place a pan on a rack in the oven above/below the bread before it is preheated, once the loaf is placed in the oven, pour 1 cup (preferably hot so it doesn't evaporate immediately) water onto the pan to create steam and facilitate the rise. Immediately after, spray the back and sides of the oven to create steam and close the door as soon as possible. Repeat this process 2-3 times. This is a technique that I found in one of Peter Reinhardt's bread books. Make sure to use instant instead of active yeast. As the dough is mixed, it helps to use the hand like a paddle attachment of a mixer, moving it in a circular motion, the dough should stick to the bottom of the bowl, but not the sides. If the dough sticks to your hands too much, fill a bowl with cold water and set it next to your work bowl, dip the hand into the bowl in between kneading to keep it free of dough!

    Long rise times should also promote digestability

  219. webmaster

    01. Jan, 2018

    THank you!

  220. Amparo

    22. Mar, 2018

    Hi greetings from Manila, Philippines!
    I just tried your recipe and so happy with the loaves! They look stunningly delicious :)

  221. webmaster

    22. Mar, 2018

    We are thrilled! Thank you so much for letting us know!

  222. Jo

    05. Jun, 2018

    This is such a great recipe. Used your exact measures and a long rise ( 8 hours while I went out to work) in a new fab non stick 1lb bread tin. Delicious, chewy, yummy rye bread and so easy to make. Thank you!

  223. Barrie nichols

    13. Jun, 2018

    Spent a very pleasant hour perusing the recipes.i am about to bake today before the World Cup demands all my free time

  224. webmaster

    20. Jun, 2018


  225. webmaster

    20. Jun, 2018

    World cup games a good time to let dough rise...just saying!


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