The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Substitute for sugar or honey (something not sweet) in a 100% wheat recipe for bread machine

Glenwvdp's picture

Substitute for sugar or honey (something not sweet) in a 100% wheat recipe for bread machine

What can one substitute for honey or sugar to invigorate the yeast in a 100% wheat bread for a bread machine???? I have a good recipe for the bread machine wheat bread but would like to get rid of the mild sweet taste and still get a good rise.



subfuscpersona's picture

... to be "invigorated"

Yeast feeds on the flour. Sugar or honey is not necessary for yeast to multiply. A simple search on TFL will yeild *many* recipes for well-risen loaves of all types that only use flour, water, yeast and salt.

Sugar, honey or other sweeteners (such as molasses) add flavor, tend to help keep the final loaf more moist and also affect baking, as bread recipes that include sweeteners have a tendency to brown more quickly.

I don't use a bread machine, so cannot advise how you can successfully revise your recipe. However, if you post your recipe to this thread, you should get responses from other members who are familiar with bread machines.

best of luck



alabubba's picture

Mmmm, How about the old lady of the sugar isle, I am talking about Molasses! In my opinion nothing works better in whole wheat.


PaddyL's picture

I've often used maple syrup when I'm out of honey.  It's perfect for ww bread.

berryblondeboys's picture

I would suggest Molasses too. It's what a lot of classic recipes use with WW.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

how about doing a salt soak on part of the Whole wheat flour?  Get the natural sugars in the flour to boost the yeast sooner.  Take half the flour and combine with a little more than half the water and all the salt and let it sit for 12 hours before adding to the machine.  Drop the sugar/honey/sweetners if you want to.

yozzause's picture

Hi Glenwvdp

 I agree leave out the sugar / honey especially if you do not like the sweetness, Molasess will give you great colour but the sweetness is offset by some residual bitterness, Dark stout beer is also unsurpassed in a good wholemeal / wholewheat bread and will generate a whole new flavour experience for you. Try substituting half the liquid or go the whole hog and sub the whole lot. I also love to soak half the flour especially the wholemeal / wholewheat overnight, i usually prefer half flour half wholemeal anyway. I now do home brew of stout mainly for baking purposes although i have been known to knock the cap off the odd bottle to be assured of the quality of the product, and know that its not going bad on me!!!

I was in a home brew shop yesterday and was amazed at the number of ingrediants that i will be able to try in the near future, a large variety of malted grains rangeing from lightly roasted to dark chocolate colours  just waiting to be put through the grinder and added to a batch. I did buy an IRISH VELVET DARK STOUT kit 1.8kg that will make  40 pints of the stuff. i also bought a packet 500g of dry DARK MALT to add during the bottling phase and to also try in my next bread batch.  

Kind regards Yozza

Frequent Flyer's picture
Frequent Flyer

Reinhart's soaker and biga method (Whole Grain Breads) rocks for 100% whole grains.  The soaker is roughly 1/2 the flour, 1/2 the water and 1/2 the salt and leave it out on the counter covered for up to 24 hours.  The biga is similar except it has no salt and a pinch (1/8) of the yeast in the recipe and is covered and refrigerated for the same amount of time.  Afterward, and at room temperature, these are then mixed with the remainder of the ingredients and kneaded and so on. 


Glenwvdp's picture

Thanks to everyone that replied and offered advice and information. All was very helpful and on point.