The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Athlete's Bread Rolls

Athlete's Bread Rolls

wjmartins's picture


As an athlete in endurance sports, I was looking for a healthy carbohydrate option, with fiber and nutrients. After a lot of trial and error I came up with these bread rolls, which I find so tasty, they are spoiled by serving with anything other than butter. Important not to over-bake, they need to come out of the oven at 190F internal temperature and placed on a rack to cool.

I use a Super Food Blend available from Costco or online to add nutrients in the recipe. It contains Quinoa flakes, Cacao Nibs, Milled Flax, Hemp Seeds, Coconut Flakes and Buckwheat.

The recipe uses a sponge, to ferment for at least 6 hours, or after fermentation overnight in the refrigerator.




Prep time
Cooking time20 minutes
Total time20 minutes


175 g
Whole wheat flour (Sponge)
35 g
Super Food Blend (Natures Earthly Choice) (Sponge)
14 g
Chia Seeds (Sponge)
14 g
Flaxseed (Sponge)
14 g
sesame seeds (Sponge)
1 t
Yeast, Instant (Sponge)
290 g
water (Sponge)
eggs (Large eggs, around 58 grams each)
25 g
1 t
Ginger powder
1⁄2 t
Ascorbic acid
1 t
Yeast, Instant
3 t
3 t
Salt, Kosher
210 g


Mix all the ingredients noted as "sponge" together in a mixer using a paddle, until well mixed, around 4 minutes. Close in a bowl with plastic and allow at least 6 hours to ferment. Afterwards, place in refrigerator overnight. This completes the sponge, or pre-ferment.

Remove sponge from refrigerator and allow the temperatures to stabilize for at least 2 hours. Add the bread flour and the remainder of the ingredients. Mix and knead either in a dough mixer of by hand. Once mixed, leave the dough to hydrolyze for approximately 20 minutes. Knead well, shape into a ball and close in a container with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise until it has more than doubled in volume.

Using all purpose flour around 10-11% protein content, aim for a hydration around 60%. Depending on the size of the eggs added, it may be necessary to adjust the water/flour ratio. 

Remove dough from container onto a work-top and form each roll using approximately 130 grams of dough to form one roll. Fold four times and shape into a ball. Place each of the dough balls on parchment paper in a baking pan, there should be 12 rolls. Spray with cooking spray and loosely cover with plastic wrap.

Allow the rolls to double in size, important not to over-proof as we want a lot of oven spring.

Optional, baste with egg and place sunflower seeds on top of rolls.

Oven should be ready at 370F, place in oven and open oven every 3 minutes to spray liberally with a water sprayer during baking for the first 10 minutes. Baking should take approximately 20 minutes, do not exceed an internal temperature of 190F. 

Remove and place on rack to cool.



I normally place 4 rolls in a zip-lock bag and then into the freezer. Before serving microwave15 seconds twice (turning over) delivers a delicious fresh lukewarm roll.