Bread Machine Recipe Made with Soaked Flour

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist May 27, 2013

Bread Machine RecipeGreat news!

Homemade bread is making a comeback, frequently combined with the convenience of a bread machine recipe. More and more people are opting to make their own with quality ingredients they source themselves.

Quality trumping convenience is an idea whose time has come in the bread department as the general public awakens to the dangers of white flour, one of the “displacing foods of modern commerce” as described by Dr. Weston A. Price in his nutritional classic Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.

This is a radical change from even just a few decades ago. My Grandmother, like many of her generation, always chose white bread over “brown bread” as she called it because she considered whole wheat bread a sign of poverty.  She believed this because she observed when she was growing up that those who ate white bread were more affluent and educated.

Fortunately, this notion is no longer a popular mindset and the high sales of bread machines along with the popularity of bread machine recipes illustrate this point.

Not only is bread made with white flour basically devoid of nutrition, it adds to the body’s toxic load with a plethora of additives, chemicals, and rancid vegetable oils.

Worse, unlike the white bread of even just 10 years ago, store bread frequently contains soy flour which threatens hormonal health and can trigger digestive problems for those who are sensitive.

Consumers choosing to bake their own bread are usually forgoing white flour in favor of whole wheat or whole grains. While whole grain flour may be fresher when ground at home and the bread more nutritious with no chemical additives, other problems emerge from the modern preparation.

Modern breadmaking using a bread machine recipe typically employs the use of yeast and high heat to quickly raise the dough and bake the bread. This contrasts with the slow, natural rise that occurs with fermented dough baked at a lower temperature for a longer period of time.

Science has demonstrated the wisdom of the careful preparation methods of our ancestors as all grains and legumes contain phytic acid, an organic acid that blocks mineral absorption in the intestinal tract. Phytic acid is neutralized in as little as 7 hours of soaking in water with small amounts of an acidic medium such as yogurt, lemon juice or cider vinegar. Soaking also neutralizes enzyme inhibitors present in the hulls of all grains and adds beneficial enzymes which increase the amount of nutrients present – especially the B vitamins.

For those with gluten intolerance, soaking or fermenting gluten-based grains breaks down this difficult-to-digest plant protein; studies carried out in Italy have found that people with celiac disease can consume genuine sourdough bread without digestive distress or auto-immune symptoms.

I frequently get asked how to make fresh bread at home using the traditional method of soaking flour first combined with the modern convenience of a bread machine.

If you have a breadmaker and would like to transition to a traditional method for making bread while continuing to use this appliance, here’s a bread machine recipe to try adapted from the Healthy4Life booklet from the Weston A. Price Foundation.

Bread Machine Recipe Using Soaked Flour


Soaked Loaf in a Bread Machine1/2 cup plus 2 TBL full fat yogurt
3/4 cup filtered water
4 cups whole grain flour, less 3 TBL – preferably freshly ground
2 TBL softened butter (sources)
1 TBL molasses (sources)
3 TBL arrowroot powder (sources)
1 3/4 tsp dried yeast granules (sources)
1 tsp sea salt (sources)


Mix yogurt with water and mix with the flour to form a dough.  Cover and leave in a warm spot on the kitchen counter for 18-24 hours.

Put the dough plus the yeast, arrowroot, sea salt, molasses, and butter in the bread machine.  Set it to the wholemeal setting and begin.

When it is partway through the kneading section, check that all the ingredients have mixed together and observe the consistency of the dough.

If it is slimy, add some more arrowroot powder.  If it’s too dry, add a few more drops of water, drop by drop.

Proceed as directed.

Enjoy your fresh baked loaf courtesy of a blend of modern convenience and Traditional Wisdom!


Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Source:  Healthy 4 Life Dietary Guidelines

Picture Credit


Comments (94)

  1. Sarah, I buy genuine sourdough bread from our local bread shop. It is made fresh everyday, they use a sourdough starter, and let it rise the appropriate amount. However, I believe it is made with white flour (non organic). Does this qualify for healthy sourdough bread you talk about eating?

  2. What bread machine is this? Thanks in advance. We have been making all our bread with the Kitchen Aid and would love a little more convenience. I have a birthday coming up and may convince the hubby (actually the primary bread maker) to spring for it! :)

  3. I thought you said a while back that rami said that milk products whether fermented or not don’t break down grains as much as an acid like lemon, or vinegar does?

  4. Thanks so much for this recipe. I’ve had a go at Sue Gregg’s but had to halve it as I only wanted one loaf. I used spelt and it was okay. I don’t use a bread machine, but do knead dough in a Thermomix.
    I’m really looking forward to trying this with our own wheat when my grain mill arrives!

  5. I’m wondering what everyone else’s machine cycle is like for a whole wheat bread. My bread did not rise enough before it baked. :-( I have a cuisinart.

  6. sarah…….i’m enjoying your blog so much. i have a question about grain. if i were not to soak and sprout my grain first, does soaking the flour take care of whatever the soaking and sprouting of grain was to do? i’m so new at all this and it’s overwhelming to think of soaking and sprouting grain, then soaking the flour. this would be so much easier in the bread machine. thank you for the great information.

    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist
      Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist October 20, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      Vital wheat gluten is not a healthy addition to homemade bread. It is a very hard to digest plant protein and should never be added to anything.

  7. I tried this for the first time this past weekend, with my new Beem bread machine. I used what I had on hand– honey instead of molasses and whey instead of yogurt. The dough looked great during the kneading and rising cycles, but when the baking finished I discovered a doughy loaf that sank in the middle and did not bake except for the edges–heavy as a bowling ball, too. I’m so disappointed, but scared to try again for fear I waste any more ingredients.

    • Rachel, This is a good recipe but here is a link to an even better one. Have made this 3 times now, and each time it has turned out well. My only changes are, I don’t use arrowroot powder to roll out the bread. I butter my hands and cutting board and roll it out. Because I don’t use arrowroot powder, the dough maybe a little soft, this will result in a more coarse bread. So when you put the bread on to soak, I make sure the dough is not too soft adding a little more flour it I need to.

      I hope this works well for you. By the way, I have had my bread from the recipe you used turn out the same way. Not always, but once in a while. This other recipe taste very good too.

      • Hi, Terri,

        This sounds like a really good recipe, but I am very leary of the ascorbic acid because it is my understanding that it is derived from GMO corn. Is there a healthy alternative to ascorbic acid? Thanks :)

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  9. Thank you so much for this bread recipe. When I soaked it, it was very dry. I looked at it later and decided (after reading all of the comments) to add 1/2 cup more water. I live in the southwest and it’s very dry here. I thought it was wasted and that I would have to throw it out. But then when I put it in my electrolux mixer, it mixed up beautifully.

    Thanks also to Terrie who showed how to make it in a mixer and bread pans. I appreciate this soaked bread recipe. Now to try it!

  10. When I do the first step of mixing water, yogurt, and flour together, the mixture is extremely dry, and hard to mix by hand. To then add arrowroot at a later rime seems unnecessary. I have tried this a couple times and it never seems to come out right. I would love for this to work…any suggestions?
    Thank you.

  11. Pingback: 30 Blogs with Tips for Beginning Bakers on How to Make Your Own Bread | Housekeeping

  12. hi
    this looks great – i would need to replace the dairy somehow. i know how i’d replace the butter – but what about the yogurt? any ideas would be awesome, thanks.

  13. I have a Breadman bread machine and I do not have a whole meal option, do you have advice to which setting to use? I have a whole wheat setting. Thank you.

  14. Hi! Thanks for the post. I have tried this recipe twice using the exact methods and ingredients shown, but had to add about 5 extra Tablespoons of arrowroot because the dough was way too gooey after it had gone partway through the dough cycle. It had the consistency of batter instead of dough! I ended up with a hard lump that did not rise. I’d love additional instructions or troubleshooting advice. Thanks!

    • Hi Jessica,
      When I first start, I put the flour in my Bosch, and then add yogurt (I have used whey) until I get a soft ball. The measurements are not right. I do not use a bread machine. So I am playing with the dough at the first step. I do not know what to do with a bread machine, but I think it should be about the same. I have never added more arrowroot. Just flour if I get the first step too wet. I hope this helps.

      • Thanks Terri, That really helps. Mine turned out way to sticky and was like a brick too. Will try again using your suggestions.

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  16. Hi Sarah

    I haven’t been able to find arrowroot powder here in NZ. Can it be replaced with organic cornstarch.

    Thanks so much.

  17. I recently found a brand new bread machine at a garage sale for $5. The bargain hunter in me could not pass it up, however, once I got it home I realized that the pan you bake the bread in is non-stick. I went online to find a bread machine with a stainless pan, but found they are almost non-existant and the few that are out there are exorbatantly priced. I sure would love the convenience of a bread machine, but can’t bring myself to use it. Sarah, I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Thanks for ALL you do to educate us!!


  18. I’m seconding AESCJ on the einkorn flour question and I asked earlier but no reply yet. So one more time: please, does anyone know if this will work with einkorn flour as that’s all I’m using these days. Thanks! Elsha.

  19. I am interested in making this recipe but I don’t have a bread machine. Do you know at what temperature the bread is baked and for how long? I love your website and have learned so much.

    • I make this recipe in my Bosch and bake in the oven at 350. I have left other comments if you would like to scroll up and find them.

  20. Thank you so much! So, I am going soaking flour for bread again. I was so tired of trying to ammend the two-stage process for my zojorushi and all the failed attempts that I just gave up. I do, however, have a couple of questions. One, what size loaf is this recipe for? Two, afer leaving for 18 hours and adding the other ingredients, it was really sticky! How much arrowroot do you typically add? Three, could your substitute organic corn starch for the arrowroot? Lastly, if I wanted to bake in the oven instead of in the bread machine, do I have to let it rise and punch it down before transfering to my bread pan? I noticed Terri didn’t seem to have to punch it down for a second rising, but she is using a DLX that might make the second rising unnecessary? Thanks for your help! I am in the middle of trying this recipe as I type. :)

  21. How wet is the flour/water/yogurt mixture supposed to be? I am using spelt flour and it is a very dry mixture. I even added an extra 1/4 cup water but some of the flour is totally dry. I live in Colorado so I didn’t know if that makes a difference?

  22. I do the same soaking method with yoghurt and spelt flour to make a great pizza base and everyone who has ever tried it raves about it….if only they knew it was far superior health wise!!

  23. wait, so by mixing the flour with water/yogurt and leaving on the counter overnight–the flour is now soaked? Just want to make sure I’m not missing a step!

  24. Would this work with einkorn flour?? I also read Wheat Belly which makes it very clear that today’s wheat is not healthy and should be avoided. I only bake now with einkorn flour which I grind from the einkorn berries.

  25. while this is a good article, Sarah, I am most amused by your
    grandmother’s perception that “White bread was used by affluent people”
    that same perception invaded my poor immigrant upbringing
    and clouded their otherwise native intelligence !!
    Peasant food is the best !

  26. Hi Sarah, thanks for this bread recipe! But I have one issue, I do not have a bread machine and instead have been making all of my bread in my KitchenAid. Do you have a recipe for this style of baking?


  27. Thanks very timely for me. I am just satrting my 1 yr old on once and awhile grains but very choosey over what grains. like spelt not whole wheat yet. mayb some bean flour added. just to see how she does. and want it all to be sprouted or soaked like in the Bible. thanks again.

  28. I thought because wheat has been hybridized for the last 50 years that it is no longer any good for us except maybe eincorn wheat. Dr. Wm. Davis author of Wheat Belly has a ton of info on this.

  29. I was taught that it was the gliadin in the gluten that was the Celiac’s enemy. Does this soaking process somehow de-activate the gliadin as well? Or – has the gliadin theory been discredited?

  30. Kimberly Bears via Facebook May 27, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Karen, I don’t think you can avoid a non-stick pan in a bread machine, since there is no way to grease the pan between kneading and baking. I made two-stage bread in my Zojirushi bread machine for years, but I recently switched to a DLX Magic Mill mixer, to get away from Zojirushi’s non-stick pans. Bosch and Kitchen Aid also make mixers for bread.

  31. Karen, I don’t think there’s any way to avoid a non-stick pan in a bread machine. Since there is no way to grease the pan between kneading and baking, the non-stick coating is required. I made two-stage bread in my Zojirushi bread machine for years. I loved the convenience, but I recently switched to using a DLX Magic Mill mixer (a heavy duty bread mixer, with a stainless steel bowl), to get away from Zojirushi’s non-stick pans. I now bake in stoneware pans in my oven. Bosch and Kitchen Aid also make mixers for bread; the Kitchen Aid is significantly cheaper.

  32. Kathleen Stone Corkett via Facebook May 27, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    So what is the different way to make bread in a machine with sprouted flour then?


  33. Karen Viteri via Facebook May 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    This looks great, but anyway to work bread machine without the nonstick pan it comes with? Any suggestions?

  34. I don’t have a bread machine. Do you have a recipe or altered directions for making this by hand?
    I just got a grain mill and am eager to make good FRESH whole wheat bread.

    • Please find my comment, I explain that it can be done without a bread machine. I use my bosch and bake regularly in the oven.

  35. I have been on an iodine kick since Dr. Mercola’s iodine newsletter. I encourage everyone to check out Dr. David Brownstein’s youtube videos and Dr. Sherry Tenpenny’s youtube video about iodine. Storebought bread is full of BROMINE which is not only terrible for us, but it also displaces iodine. This post is so timely! There are so many reasons to bake our own bread Thank you!

  36. sharon lindsley May 27, 2013 at 11:14 am

    I would like to try this with my kitchen aid mixer and conventional oven – as I don’t have a bread machine and don’t care to. will this recipe work?

    • I use my bosch to mix the flour and yogurt together and leave it in over night. Then I add the other ingredients, mix. Sometimes I have to add water but I am very careful not to over do it. Roll out into loaves, let rise and bake. It works wonderfully. I don’t have a bread machine.

  37. Hey Sarah!

    My In-Laws have given me a couple 5# cans of Turkey Red Hard Winter Wheat (from Utah…really old stuff!)

    Wondering if you have any recipes that would work with that, and also wondering if I need to soak them before doing anything. I’m soaking illiterate as of right now but really want to try the wheat out!


  38. What kind of bread machine is this? I have heard most bread machines can’t handle 100% whole wheat. I’d love one that could!!

    • The machine in the photo is a Morphy Richards. Fabulous brand. I can’t get them here in NZ and have been using my mothers which has a whole wheat function (can’t even see a brand marked on there – must be a cheap one!). I’ve been using this recipe for ages – it’s really easy and yummy.

  39. I have not started sourdough baking but it is at the top of my list. Now I am confused. The celiac blog post/link above you write “Abandoning the traditional methods of bread preparation in favor of baker’s yeast would have disastrous effects on people’s health.”
    So is baker’s yeast good for you or bad?

    Thank you for further elaboration.

  40. This is really interesting and indeed helpful. I occasionally bake bread, not as often as I could, but have neglected using the bread machine just because I didn’t really see a way to make a healthier loaf that didn’t come out like a bowling ball! I can’t wait to try this. Thank you for the excellent information.

      • Thanks, let me know how it turns out :)

        I’m new to traditional cooking methods so still trying to get acquainted with it all. What’s in a sourdough starter?

    • im doing in my kitchin aid and over. I used for a Jordan Rubin muffin recipe..carrots culture instead of yogurt. worked good. sure could have used lemon or cider vinegar but yogurt has probiotics too so tried it.

  41. we make all our bread including sourdough. I wanted to know if I can use organic sage honey in place of the molasses?

    And what roll does arrowroot play in this recipe?


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