Honey Whole-Wheat Bread

Photo: Marcus Nilsson
Prep Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 35 mins
1 loaf

For the ultimate whole-wheat sandwich bread, this loaf relies on 100 percent whole-grain flour and equal amounts of honey and butter to keep it soft. This recipe is adapted from Ben Butler at Hayden Flour Mills. Martha made this recipe on "Martha Bakes" episode 807.


  • 3 tablespoons honey

  • 1 ¾ cups warm water (110 degrees)

  • 1 envelope (¼ ounce) active dry yeast (2 ¼ teaspoons)

  • 1 pound , 6 ounces (about 4 ½ cups) freshly milled whole-wheat bread flour, such as Hayden Flour Mills Hard Red Spring, plus more for dusting

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for bowl and pan


  1. In a small bowl, stir honey into warm water, then sprinkle with yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.

  2. Stir together flour and salt in a medium bowl, then stir in yeast mixture and melted butter just until a dough forms. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a large buttered bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Punch down dough. Shape into an 8-inch square, about 1 inch thick. Fold in two opposite sides of dough to meet in middle, slightly overlapping. Press seam to seal. Place dough, seam-side down, in a buttered 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. Sprinkle with flour. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warm spot until dough is about 3/4 inch above top of pan, 30 to 45 minutes.

  4. Transfer pan to oven and immediately reduce heat to 350 degrees. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until top is golden brown and bottom sounds hollow when tapped, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool in pan on wire rack 20 minutes, then turn out bread onto rack and let cool completely. Bread can be stored, tightly wrapped, at room temperature up to 3 days or frozen up to 3 months.

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