Before I get to today’s recipe, I want you to know that there is still time to enter my OpenSky giveaway…one person will win a super cool eco-friendly recycled cardboard vase and everyone else gets a coupon for 10% off anything in my OpenSky shop…here’s where you enter…good luck!

I tend toward a low gluten diet, so bread is not something that I scarf down in large amounts on a regular basis. Every now and then, though, I do love to bake and eat bread.

While I’ve definitely become a devotee of the Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day technique in recent months, this recipe for soft oatmeal bread is still among my absolute favorite yeast bread recipes.


I learned the method for making this bread, which utilizes leftover cooked grains, from a fellow named Jeff Basom. Jeff was the chef at Bastyr University when I was a naturopathic student (and his bread was so good that some of his recipes appear in the book Feeding the Whole Family: Cooking with Whole Foods by Cynthia Lair).

I love making bread with cooked oats (you could also use cooked brown rice, millet, or quinoa) because it is a great way to use up leftovers, it adds additional nutrients, and the resulting loaf has a lovely soft and chewy texture. Because you need to ferment the oats and some of the flour overnight, be sure you plan accordingly when making this recipe. It’s not hard to make…it just takes a little time.

Oatmeal Bread Recipe

Makes 2 loaves


Ingredients for the oatmeal starter:

* 2 cups cooked oatmeal
* 2 cups water (or 1 cup water and 1 cup milk)
* 1/4 cup softened organic butter
* 1 tablespoon sea salt
* 1 tablespoon dry yeast
* 1 cup organic all-purpose unbleached flour or whole wheat flour

Ingredients for the bread:

* 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
* approx. 6 cups organic all purpose unbleached flour or whole wheat flour


Preparation of the starter:

Mix oatmeal, water, milk (if using), butter, salt, and yeast in a blender and then pour into a large bowl. Add 1 cup of flour and mix well: it should resemble a thick gruel. Cover the bowl with a damp towel or plastic wrap and leave for 12-24 hours at room temperature to ferment.

Preparation of the bread:

1. After the 12-24 hours, mix the sweetener into the starter dough. Stir in 2 cups white or wheat flour.

2. As you add the remaining 4 cups of flour (more or less), the mixture will become too difficult to stir by hand, so you can either mix it in Kitchen Aid mixer with the bread dough hook, or you can use your hands to knead in the flour in the bowl. When most of the flour has been incorporated and the dough is no longer sticky, transfer it to a floured surface.

3. Knead the bread dough for 10-15 minutes more or until dough is soft and springy. Wash and dry your mixing bowl and spread with a little butter. Place dough into the bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

4. When dough has risen sufficiently, punch it down. Remove from the mixing bowl and divide the dough into two equal portions. Knead each ball a bit more and then place your dough into two bread pans, or shape as you like (I usually make mine into round/oval shapes) and place on lightly buttered cookie sheet. If you want to make smaller loaves instead, go ahead. If you make 2 loaves, they will be pretty large, so you could make 3-4 smaller ones instead.

5. It will take about 45-60 minutes for the loaves to approximately double in size, so you should preheat the oven to 350°F. about 30 minutes into this rising.

6. Slash the top of each loaf 3-4 times with a serrated knife (or make a criss-cross pattern, like I did) and then place in the oven. Bake anywhere from 25-50 minutes, depending on the size and shape of your loaves. The bread is done when golden brown and a tap on the bottom of each loaf makes a hollow noise.

7. At this point, it's probably very hard to wait, but allow your bread to cool on a wire rack for about 30 minutes before slicing. If you baked your loaves in bread pans, allow them to cool in the pans for 5 minutes before transferring to the rack. If you don't wait for the bread to cool, it will have a gummy texture when you slice it (and you'll probably end up ruining the lovely appearance of your loaves).

Serve with a couple of pats of organic butter, some raw honey, or your favorite all natural jam or marmalade; or use it to accompany a soup or as a sandwich bread…it’s wonderful no matter how you choose to eat it!


This post is linked to Weekend Herb Blogging, hosted this week by Katie from Eat This!



  1. 1

    Lauren — April 12, 2010 @ 5:16 pm

    What a great idea! It really does look very soft and delicious =D.

  2. 2

    drwinnie — April 12, 2010 @ 5:42 pm

    Thanks Lauren,
    Wish it was gf so you could enjoy it!

  3. 3

    deeba — April 12, 2010 @ 7:24 pm

    Lovely… what a different and nice recipe. Looks so soft and moist!

  4. 4

    Barbara @ moderncomfortfood — April 13, 2010 @ 4:21 am

    I’ve been making my own bread for decades but never even thought of the option of using cooked grains. What a great idea! Many thanks for sharing it.

  5. 5

    5 Star Foodie — April 13, 2010 @ 5:48 am

    This bread looks terrific!

  6. 6

    Kaitlin — April 13, 2010 @ 6:55 am

    This bread sounds fantastic! Yum!

  7. 7

    Scott K — April 13, 2010 @ 7:20 am

    Love how healthy this is! Will be trying it soon.

  8. 8

    iana — April 13, 2010 @ 3:27 pm

    I love the recipe. It doesn’t seem to be too complicated, and it looks beautiful.
    But I have a question.. Can I replace the maple syrup for something else? Here in Spain we don’t have that in the supermarkets, and I wouldn’t know where else to look for it. Thank you.

  9. 9

    drwinnie — April 13, 2010 @ 4:27 pm

    Iana- you can replace it with honey!

  10. 10

    megan — April 13, 2010 @ 11:00 pm

    This loaf looks so soft and delicious. I love this recipe!

  11. 11

    Tia @ ButtercreamBarbie — April 14, 2010 @ 12:27 am

    i’m so excited to try this – i have tons of instant flavored oatmeal pkg my son used to love but now won’t eat. I don’t like oatmeal either, but i bet i’ll like this bread and what a great way to use up those oatmeal sachets!

  12. 12

    Sarah — April 14, 2010 @ 6:32 am

    Is there any way to reduce the amount of butter and still keep the integrity of the bread?

    - Sarah

  13. 13

    drwinnie — April 14, 2010 @ 6:38 am

    Sarah- you can replace the butter with some sort of oil if you are more comfortable with that…I personally don’t really use vegetable oils in my baking unless it is coconut oil, which I do not think would work here. I don’t know if reducing the amount of the butter would affect the texture and make it not as soft, but if you try it and it works, let me know!

  14. 14

    Katie — April 14, 2010 @ 3:37 pm

    This bread looks amazing, and I’m a big fan of soft breads too. Thanks for submitting to WHB!

  15. 15

    Ricki — April 16, 2010 @ 9:55 am

    It looks so great! If only it didn’t have yeast. . . *sigh*!

  16. 16

    Aubree Cherie — April 20, 2010 @ 7:12 am

    I love how this looks. I’ve been trying a lot of new bread recipes lately, so hopefully this will be one I can make! I’ve actually added this recipe to my weekly top ten recipe review! :)

    ~Aubree Cherie

  17. 17

    Joanne — April 21, 2010 @ 2:31 pm

    I’m an HBinFive addict as well but I’m always up for trying a new bread. This looks fantastic!

  18. 18

    Erika Morrison — April 25, 2010 @ 8:48 pm

    Just baked 2 giant loafs out of this very delicious recipe!
    great way to use up cooked grains.I did replace
    3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil for the butter,
    and it worked out so beautifully,thanks for sharing
    Love it!

  19. 19

    sangeeta — April 28, 2010 @ 4:35 am

    this is so good , i am going to make it soon …

  20. 20

    Mary T Capone — May 5, 2010 @ 6:34 am

    I would love to print this recipe but with out all the comments. Is there a way for me to do this? Thanks Mary

  21. 21

    drwinnie — May 5, 2010 @ 12:11 pm

    At the bottom of the post, before the comments section begins, there is a “print this post” icon and link. Click on that, and you’ll be able to print the recipe without the comments and every thing else you don’t want!

  22. 22

    Honey Oatmeal Whole Wheat Bread | Crumbdoodles — May 23, 2010 @ 4:15 pm

    [...] found this recipe at Healthy Green Kitchen, and it seemed to hit all the marks!  Healthy, with odd ingredients, and employing a technique [...]

  23. 23

    nannaboo — June 22, 2010 @ 6:10 pm

    Where can you find active dry yeast in about a pound quanity that is from the USA? I ordered 2 lbs from a health food store and it was from Mexico.I don’t know about you but I am not sure I want to eat this from Mexico.Tx,Nannaboo

  24. 24

    Molly — July 6, 2011 @ 4:57 pm

    My family LOVES this bread!! Thank you for an amazing recipe!

  25. 25

    best bread machine, — April 20, 2013 @ 7:44 am

    I would like to thank you for the energy you
    have put in posting this website. I am looking to see otherweb site post from you in the future.

    plz also excuse my bad english as it’s not my first language.