Real Food: 5-Ingredient All-purpose Homemade Bread

Real Food Bread

As I said in this post, living in a small town means that if I want a “real food” bread, I have to bake it myself. Because of this, I wanted to find a loaf that would be fairly simple.

I call this my all-purpose bread because we use it for everything. We slice it and butter it to eat with a meal sometimes, we use it for toast in the mornings, and even for sandwiches.

It’s a little chewy, and if you cultivate it, you can get a nice crusty crust on this bread. (I prefer it softer and chewy so I wrap mine. If you want a hard crust, you’ll want to avoid wrapping it tightly, and instead just cover it lightly if at all).

It’s actually a french bread and it seems to “save” better than many homemade sandwich breads I’ve tried, which tend to dry out faster.

With just 5 ingredients, this is one of the easiest breads I’ve found, so it’s great for beginners not used to working with yeast. I have long ago memorized the short ingredients list and method so that I can throw this bread together without looking at a recipe, which makes it much more time-efficient.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bread


  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 packet (or 2 1/4 tsp) dry yeast (much less expensive to buy in bulk)
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2-3 cups white whole wheat flour (I prefer this kind)


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine water, yeast, and honey. Allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes, or until the top looks foamy.
  2. Add salt + 1 cup flour, and mix vigorously with a wire whisk, until mostly smooth.
  3. Add 1-2 more cups of flour until you have a dough that you can work with. Roll onto flour-dusted countertop and knead for 5-10 minutes, adding flour to your hands as needed if the dough gets sticky. Note: Don’t add too much flour here or your bread may be dry, just add enough that you can work with it.
  4. Place dough ball in a large bowl, covered with a kitchen towel, in a warm place for around 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  5. Punch down dough, divide in half, and shape into 2 loaves on baking sheet. Cover with towel in a warm place for around 30 minutes.
  6. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.



    • Crystal Brothers says

      Hmmmm, not sure what happened, ours is very soft. If yours isn’t, you might try playing around with the rise time, etc. If it doesn’t rise well, it won’t be soft.

      I was confused as well the first time I saw a French bread recipe that did not require any type of fat, but it turned out great. If you do add oil/butter, you’ll be making a different bread. Nothing wrong with that, though, I like all different types of bread :-)

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