This is my favorite rye bread recipe of all time… so far. I could have just as easily called it Swedish Rye Bread or Aroma Therapy Bread for that matter (takes the coveted baking bread smell to another level). And if you’re not into sourdough baking, no problem, I cover the instant yeast version as well.

So much time had passed since my last video shoot I’d forgotten the challenge of keeping a video short and concise. Sorry about the way this one drones on. If you’re already a bread baker, you can probably just go off the written recipe and instructions below.




Artisan Sourdough Rye Bread
Artisan Sourdough Rye Bread

This is my favorite rye bread recipe of all time… so far. I could have just as easily called it Swedish Rye Bread or Aroma Therapy Bread for that matter (takes the coveted baking bread smell to another level). Covers both sourdough and instant yeast versions.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 18 hours

Yield: 1 Loaf


  • Water: 400 grams, 1 3/4 cups
  • Sourdough Starter: 70 grams, 1/3 cup (omit if making the instant yeast version)
  • Instant Yeast: 1 tsp. (omit if making sourdough leavened version)
  • Rye Flour: 245 grams, 1 3/4 cups
  • Bread Flour: 245 grams, 1 3/4 cups
  • Molasses: 44 grams, 2 Tbs.
  • Fennel Seed: 8 grams, 1 Tbs.
  • Anise Seed: 2 grams, 1 tsp.
  • Caraway Seed: 3 grams, 1 tsp.
  • Salt: 12 grams, 1 3/4 tsp.
  • Zest of 1 Orange


Sourdough Version:

In a mixing bowl, mix the starter into the water. Add the molasses, all the seeds and orange zest.

In a separate bowl, combine the flours and salt.

Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the wet using a dough whisk or spoon until the flour is well incorporated. Cover with plastic and let rest for 15 minutes. After about 15 minutes, mix again for a minute or two. Again let rest for 15 minutes and mix one more time as before. Now cover the bowl with plastic and let sit at room temperature for roughly 12-14 hours.

Instant Yeast Version

The only difference is don’t use sourdough starter and instead mix the instant yeast into the dry ingredients before combining with the wet ingredients.

Both Versions

After the long 12-14 hour proof, stretch and fold the dough and shape into boule or batard (round or oblong) shape for baking. (If you didn’t follow that, I’m afraid you’re doomed to watch the video.) Cover again with plastic and let rest 15 minutes before putting in a proofing basket for the final rise. If you don’t have a proofing basket, line a bowl with a well floured kitchen towel and put the dough in there for the final rise. The final rise should last somewhere between 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Keep the dough covered with plastic to prevent it from drying out.

Preheat your oven to 475 F a half hour before baking.

Score the dough with a razor or sharp serrated knife and bake until the internal temp is about 200 F.

Let cool completely before eating.


On 12-14 hour proofing period: I typically prepare everything in the evening for baking the next morning. You can also mix everything up in the morning and refrigerate until evening then remove before bed to resume the proofing at room temperature. Alternatively, if you get started with mixing everything up early enough in the morning, the bread can also be ready to bake in the evening. This is a nice option when you want fresh bread ready to eat for breakfast.


On Rye: Higher in protein, phosphorus, iron and potassium than wheat. It’s high in lysine, low in gluten and very low in Saturated Fat, Cholesterol and Sodium. It is also a good source of Zinc, Copper and Selenium, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber and Manganese.

Rye bread, including pumpernickel, is a widely eaten food in Northern and Eastern Europe. Rye is also used to make the familiar crisp bread.

Some other uses of rye include rye whiskey and use as an alternative medicine in a liquid form, known as rye extract. Often marketed as Oralmat, rye extract is a liquid obtained from rye and similar to that extracted from wheatgrass. Its benefits are said to include a strengthened immune system, increased energy levels and relief from allergies, but there is no clinical evidence for its efficacy. Rye also seems active in the prevention of prostate cancer.

Jan 2, 2011 addition: Check out Joe Doniach’s variation of this recipe.

July 2011 addition: Also see Heinz’s simple and fast Swiss Artisan Bread Recipe.

Artisan Sourdough Rye Bread

Comments from our Forum

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  1. Patricia says:

    I have been baking bread for more than 40 yrs now, since my hippie days. And up until a few month ago I had an ancient sourdough starter, but alas and alack she died. So I've started with a new one. It is lovely. I've been making pumpernickel for my "boyfriend" since I started making regular sourdough for myself, again. I scan the Internet for different recipes all the time esp for the pumpernickel since its new to me. (He says why don't you just stick to one) well you know how that goes. So I'm making this Artisan Sourdough Rye. I can't wait to see how it turns out and how he likes it. He's laughing that I got up at 8am to finish it! I'm not a morning person. It's on its 2nd rise and looks lovely, not too sticky, nice rise, good shape. I want to thank everyone who contributed comments! Turns out you're not too old to learn new tricks! Heehee!d

  2. Patricia says:

    This bread turned out so beautiful and delicious. I didn't have anise or orange and can't wait to make it again with the missing ingredients.

    I think this is the most beautiful loaf I've ever made! And it does taste GREAT!

  3. sharondhl1 says:

    I love this bread, thank you Eric for the recipes and video tutorials. I'm not sure if any other recipe can beat this! I loved it and the whole family did as well. Just out of interest, what happens if I just use my sourdough from the fridge without feeding it?

  4. mcfunk says:

    Hi there. I'm another one with a rye sourdough starter and I'm starting to suspect that it behaves quite differently from white or wheat starters. It's nowhere near as stiff, for one. I'm sure it played a part of my first (and only yet) batch of this bread being overly wet and sticky, and I think the ratio of yeast to moisture impacts the rise as well (i.e., I suspect that I'm getting less yeast for the quantity of starter).

    I've seen some methods online that call for taking the starter "mother" and adding flour and water in given quantities to stiffen before using in a recipe, such as the following:

    To use for recipes - Combine 1/2 c (5 oz) mother starter from the refrigerator with 3 oz flour and 2.5 oz warm water (85 - 90 degrees). The mixture will be stiffer than the mother. Let it sit, covered, until doubled in volume (if it doesn't do so go back to maintenance procedure). When the starter has doubled, it is ready to use in a recipe. Measure the amount needed and discard any that remains. (

    Do you think that using such a method would produce a starter that would better approximate the stiffness of the starter you are using, and create more consistent results in recipes in general? Or am I better off just spinning off a white or wheat starter from my rye start?

  5. Paula says:

    Such a great recipe and comprehensive tutorial!
    I went with the Rapid Rise (instant) yeast method and was very pleased with the results. This was a test run for a dinner party next weekend for a group of us who went on a Rhine River cruise this summer and I am looking forward to sharing this wonderful recipe!

  6. wilbri says:

    Have been following and baking with lessons from this site for a few happy months now.
    The most dramatic lessons I've learned, are the use of a Dutch Oven and an implanted thermometer.
    I have experimented with 100% rye (will write about that at another time) however, am trying to improve my technique with this recipe.
    Repeatedly, I get a very wet bread.
    Usually, the Dutch Oven is heated up to 240*C (i.e. 'hot' oven) and closed with the dough for 20 minutes.
    Then, the cover of the Dutch Oven's removed and the thermometer is speared into the still baking bread, with an alarm set for 98*C.
    This is usually reached in another 30 or so minutes.
    Round wooden skewer tests always come out wet, so I keep the bread in for longer and longer, causing it to over crust. Possibly even, to burn.
    At this time, I am baking the same recipe with 370 instead of 400 grams of water.
    The dough was very sticky - let's see what happens.🤔
    Any suggestions how to get the baked bread less sticky?

  7. wilbri says:

    Here it goes ▶️ The crumb looks good, the crust is crunchy and thin, the bread, though still sticky, is much less sticky than usual.
    I'll write the ingredients, including all changes I've made to the 'official' recipe over the past few months.
    It would be an exaggeration to say that I'm delighted with the outcome- I am happy.
    A bit of background, we live about 700 meters above sea level, near Jerusalem, in Israel.
    Spring is behind us, so the unheated in-house temperatures are just over 20*C.
    This bread's dough was started on Thursday morning, about 9am, then put in the fridge at 2pm, until this (Sunday) morning at 8am.
    The second rise, after folding, started at 2pm, for baking at 4pm.

    The ingredients:
    370 grams water
    70 grams rye starter
    245 grams whole rye flour
    245 grams general white wheat flour
    40 grams date syrup
    5 grams table salt
    25 grams peeled sunflower seed
    25 grams linseed

    Followed directions of Artisan Sourdough Rye Bread.

  8. ritchd01 says:

    Eric, I love your site but am having trouble with the Artisan Sourdough Rye bread. #1, I'm not sure if my sourdough starter is what it should be. I live in central Canada, Manitoba to be exact. A person I know that taught culinary arts in one of our regional high schools told me that we could not maintain good sourdough starter here. We do not have the good wild yeast like that found on the west or east coast. Is there any truth to that. What can I do to keep my starter healthy. I do the weekly feeding of the starter. Should I be adding some yeast with the flour and water? I tried this recipe twice and it just does not rise like yours. I like the taste but it is not what it should be. We are in late fall, early winter here. The temperatures have been very nice so far, for us. Our house is 18C at night and 21 during the days with a relative humidity of 57%. I tried to include a couple of pictures of my latest rye bread but could not do it.. It's better than the first would you believe. Any suggestions?

  9. Michelle says:

    I adore this recipe! So flavorful, and so easy to make!
    I put it all together in the morning but knew I would not have enough time to bake at the end of the day, so I put it immediately, after mixing, into the refrigerator, and then took it out at night, to warm up and rise overnight. The loaf was formed and proofed the next morning and then baked in a cloche, it is brown and beautiful and oh, so tasty!
    Thank you for this recipe!

  10. jbluebird says:

    wow! This bread is fantastic. Followed Eric's video and ingredient list as close as possible. This is my 4th NK attempt using the pineapple based SD starter, and the best to date.

    Only issue (for now) is the overly dark bottom. For this last try I raised the rack to its highest point and lowered the temp by ~10 degrees, but still a little burnt on the buns. Will try parchment paper next weekend.

    Thank you Eric for the great instructions and delicious recipes.


Earlier Comments

760 thoughts on “Artisan Sourdough Rye Bread

  1. Hans

    Hello Eric,

    I really liked the looks of the sourdough rye bread you’ve posted on your site. The recipe seemed to be pretty straight forward so I gave it a try. The outcome was dissappointing. The crust and taste was terrific. The crumb was coarse, sticky and not soft. I’ve made many many loaves and use a starter for Rye bread only. The cause of the partial disaster I’m sure is the amylase enzymatic activity during the baking. According to Jeffrey Hamelman, the professional baker and author of the book “Bread, a baker’s book of techniques and recipes” the only way to prevent that is using sourdough starter for rye bread.
    Well, I’ve been doing just that. You don’t seems to have any problems with it, so my question is, what am I doing wrong? I’m using rye starter. No white flour in it. For the rest I followed your recipe. I would not even dare to use instant yeast in this recipe. That for me would be a guaranteed recipe for failure. Any feedback will be appreciated big time.


  2. Hi Nastya,

    Adding flour could help. Usually 13 hours isn’t too long. When I hear that the crust is burning but the inside is too moist, I wonder if your oven is running hotting than you think. Maybe lowering the heat and increasing the time could help too.

  3. Nastya

    Hi Eric,

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe – I tried my first bread baking and it turned out to be delicious. The only problem, I believe my dough ended up being too moist (compare to yours on the video – I couldn’t really make a shape out of it – it was too gooey), and it burned a little too…
    So, I believe I can fix the burning part – just hold it in the oven for a shorter period of time, but what about the dough – did I overproof it (13 hrs), or should I just add more flour?

    Thanks so much for your advice!

  4. Tim

    Thanks Eric, that does help. I’ll have to keep baking away and get a better feel for the dough. I just cut into my first sour dough rye loaf! I went through the steps on your sour dough starter videos and used it in this recipe. I wasn’t sure whether it was potent enough yet, so I put 1/2 tsp of instant yeast in with it to help. Looks like I didn’t need it though because it rose a ton, probably too much! I think I let it rise a little long because it was huge the next morning, however, it still rose while baking, so hopefully that’s a good sign. It still looks great and tastes great too. I wish I could handle the dough as easily as you do; I must’ve looked like an ogre and made quite the sticky mess. Thanks again! This is a lot of fun.

  5. Hi Tim,

    78 is quite warm so you can expect the fermentation to be fast. With “normal” bread dough, you can often tell when it’s ready to bake when you depress the dough slightly with your finger and it springs back about 1/2 way. I haven’t done the poke test with this dough so can’t vouch for its reliability here.
    I kinda hate to say this, but this is where experience pays off. After a while you can just tell from the look and feel of the dough, with some awareness of the room temp and humidity, about when it’s ready to go in the oven. I have found that when in doubt, I’ve been better served by “erring” on the early side to get the timing right.
    When the dough rises a good bit and feels poofy to the touch, throw it in. Take notes and adjust the next time if necessary.

  6. Tim

    Hi Eric, Thanks so much for spending the time to make all of these videos! I’m really excited to get into bread world. I live in a very warm climate, but the temperature indoors is pretty consistently 78 degrees. I’m not sure if I need to shorten the proofing time. How can you tell the proofing process is complete? I don’t want to risk loosing the oven spring, but I simply am unsure how to tell whether it has proofed long enough. Thanks!

  7. Awesome bread Dianne!!!

    To Savraj – I don’t know. I’d have to experiment with it to find out. You could too of course but you might also trying to find another recipe on the internet that’s wheat free.

  8. Dianne

    This is such a fabulous recipe – the video has been fantastic. I prefer just the caraway and orange as I find the anise and fennel seeds too overpowering for me – I love it – it’s my Saturday lunch bread every weekend now (and some goes to my next door neighbours too!). I have to leave the house to let it cool or I’d be cutting into it straight away!
    Many thanks,


  9. Savraj

    Hi Eric,
    I’d really like to try this recipe, but need advice on substituting bread flour with whole spelt flour (due to intolerence to wheat). How much whole spelt flour should I use?
    Thanks a lot!

  10. Hi Rebecca,

    Yes, definitely. You may want to use more flour to start with but in warm weather especially it’s easy to proof too long so cutting down the time significantly is a good option.

  11. Rebecca Eller

    Is it possible to proof too long overnight? My dought was EXTREMELY sticky when I removed it from the bowl the next dayt – almost liquid. I noticed before going to bed that the dough had risen and then fell somewhat. Probably not good to let that happen?

  12. Sounds good, Bina. That shouldn’t change it too much.

  13. BIna

    Hi Eric,

    Your bread looks fantastic! I can hardly wait to try it. Do you think I could add some raisins and walnuts to it as well as the seeds, or would that make it too heavy?

  14. Hi Brad,

    I’d love to see some recipes that include those ingredients, Even more so, I’d love to see acorns, chestnuts etc more commonly available and in an edible form. I hope I live long enough to see some significant moves in that direction in agriculture.

  15. Great bread recipes! I’m wondering if you have any recipes using flour from perennial crops such as chestnut, acorn, or carob? I’d like to support perennial agriculture because it conserves soil and benefits the environment, but I don’t want to give up bread… any suggestions?

  16. Marvin Gardens

    First, I want to thank Breadtopia for their wonderful and instructional videos. I made my sourdough starter last month with the pineapple juice and it is working perfectly! I just made a lovely sourdough bread last night and last week I made the parmesean sour dough, simply divine. I just finished mixing all the ingredients for my sourdough/rye/flax seed bread. I am excited to see how it comes out. I have been making 2 loaves a week now and I am loving this site. Thank you to all my fellow Breadtopia friends for theor suggestions and tips. Now it is time to open a bottle of Pinot Noir, toast some sourdough with gruyere cheese, and make an olive and cheese plate. Cheers!

  17. Tony Silvestro

    Hi, all.
    After about 8 or 9 attempts at refinind the SD recipe, I’m happily satisfied with the end result. It’s my wife’s favorite and getting to be mine as well.

    Still, my problem is trying to handle the wet dough after the first proofing! Seeing your video, Eric, I’m convinced that I may still need to jiggle the proportions. The only way I’ve been able to fold, etc, the dough is with a pastry scraper and then almost literally pour it into the parchment-lined proofing basket. No way could I “shape” it first.
    I’ve tried equally adding a bit more of both flours (~10 gms apiece), with no appreciable difference. The starter is fairly thick as per your example, Eric.
    Thanks for any advice.
    PS Am enjoying my new Romertopg oval baker!

  18. No. They’re just handy and, depending on how you use them, can leave a decorative pattern on the crust. A well floured tea towel draped in an ordinary bowl can also suffice for final proofing.

  19. Bart

    Do I need a proofing basket for sourdough baking?


  20. Great flavor, however the spices and orange zest kind of overpowered my loaf. Will definitely be a crowd pleaser like you said.

  21. Wil

    Kelly, your cast iron dutch oven would be great. Converting internal bread temp to baking time is a tough one. Everybodys oven is different and reaching a point of “done-ness” for your bread is pretty much quessing, trial and error or using an instant thermometer. I recommend the thermometer method.


  22. kelly

    Just wondering if I can use a cast iron dutch oven for the sourdough rye bread? Also, I know the recipe says to bake til the internal temp.reaches 200. About how long is the baking time ? Any info on the above mentioned would be appreciated. Thankx

  23. Anna

    Hi Eric, Made your sourdough rye recipe for the first time. The very first loaf of sourdough bread I made was Rye from a recipe I can’t even find now. I used 1/4 cup starter in that recipe. It was so sticky that I kept adding flour and ended up with an OK loaf that wasn’t very “sour” and not on the airy texture side of course.
    I used your recipe this time and it sure looked like it was going to BE A FLOP because again, my dough was sticky (real wet). I added only a little extra flour this time (in the initial step) thinking that after 12 hours or so it would be much stiffer but it wasn’t. I used about 3 times as much flour to press it out and fold it, hoping for some improvement since it wasn’t holding its shape. So, I put my wet and well floured blob in my proofing bowl and it was more or less just spreading rather than raising. I was thinking what a waste of ingredients this would be. I could imagine it being heavy in the middle after baked, since I also let it raise a whole hour in the proofing bowl instead of half an hour (I forgot). Went ahead and turned it into the Romertopf and put 3 cuts in the top…… wow! it raised 2 1/2 times the size into a healthy dome (but the bottom of the bread did take on the shape of the Romertopf). Can’t wait to cut into this loaf!
    Thanks for the vids!

  24. jmancancook

    Eric, new stove? It looks like you redid some of your kitchen! Also, I wish you I could buy that wood handled razor you use to score your bread. My knife always makes a mess! Great vid, love the bread I made following this. Cheers.

    • Yea, we were in construction mode last summer and ended up with a new kitchen basically.

      I’m waiting on some packaging then those wood handled razors will be available.

      Glad you’re liking the rye bread. I made a loaf of it on friday and it’s about gone already.

  25. Eileen

    I made this yesterday to bring to a dinner…. the dough itself smelled so rich and delicious… during baking the kitchen was filled with such a heavenly aroma! It made quite a large loaf, and it was a small dinner party (4 people), but I was sent home with only 2 small chunks of the bread! Everyone gave their high compliments. For myself, it was a bit more hearty than I am used to, but I loved the texture, all the seeds and the richness the molasses gives…. next time I will substitute the barely malt syrup I have in the fridge from the Sicilian No Knead Bread and let you all know how that goes…. I am also going to try a yeast version of the Whole Spelt bread in a few days – thanks for sharing all your recipes Eric!

  26. Eileen

    You’re on! I have a loaf with molasses in the oven right now, and it smells soooo good! Next one I make I will do the substitution and let you know! Thanks!

  27. Hi Eileen,

    That’s an interesting idea. It would certainly substitute well and sounds like it could be very good. I nominate you to try it and report back. 🙂

  28. Eileen

    Hi Eric – this sounds wonderful…. I was wondering – I have a jar of the barley malt syrup in the ridge that nothing much seems to call for (save the Sicilian No Knead bread)…. what do you think about substituting that for the molasses in this recipe? Eileen

  29. Well, Eric, your new rye recipe, it idid result as you say: THE BEST.
    I made for my Scott’s Bday today, we adored it along with his BDay meal, but it was the high light. Thanks so much for this new perfect loaf. You gotta know this will be a regular recipe. Fun, tastey and SO FRIGGIN EASY!

  30. Jeannette Holt

    Thank you, Madelyn, for your suggestions. I am going to try to pay more attention to the proofing times, the room temp. & how the dough looks. I also read Eric’s (?) suggestion about feeding the starter 12-24 hrs before using it. So, tonight I fed my starter and will start my bread tomorrow. I’ll let you know how it goes! Thanks, again.

  31. Madelyn

    To Jeannette posted on March 1

    When I say ‘focus on the final rise’, the first proofing is important too. I read somewhere that temperature plays a key role in proofing. Might have been on or someplace on the web. I read up on proofing problems to solve my own oven poofing dilemma. My room temperatures are very cool so my proofing times are a little longer than most. Basically, you don’t want the yeasties to run out of steam.

  32. Madelyn

    To Jeannette posted on March 1

    I started in December as a novice bread baker… never really baked bread, just cakes. I had problems with oven spring early on too. I found my problem was I was overproofing. I also have more success with the oven-spring thing with the Almost No-Knead. I haven’t figured out the really wet doughs yet. My recommendation is you first start analyzing your proofing time, especially the final rise. That’s the one I really focused on. They say its ready to bake when it doesn’t spring back, but it doesn’t spring back long after its over-proofed! So you want to try to figure out when its just starting to not spring back. Does that make sense? You want to put the bread in the oven while the yeasties still has a little ‘ooomph’, not when they are totally tuckered out.

  33. rts

    Thank you so much for the quick response….I extended the proofing for maybe another 30 mins and decided to shape them….they are baking in the oven now…the rye one seems to have more oven spring than the seeded one. One thing for sure…I am going to be buying those oven mitts/gloves of yours…the silicon pads I used got hot when I had to take out my two iron pots (oval and round to fit both at the same time)…..Again, thanks so much! Just love your site and products!

  34. rts

    I have baked quite a few of the no knead breads and the variations, too…love them….now I am venturing into the sour dough ones with seeds and grains….prepared the rye and the seeded ones last night…after 14 to 18 hours…I checked and both are not ‘puffy’ like mine used to look nor yours on the video. Should I just go ahead and shape them or wait for a few hours longer? My kitchen is on the cool side, prob 68 F.

    BTW, I made your sour dough pancakes with the ‘discarded’ sour dough this morning and they are the most tasty and fluffy pancakes ever. Just perfect, I did not have to add butter nor maple syrup!

    • Hi rts,

      14-18 hours should be plenty at 68 F. I’d go ahead and shape them. Of course they’ll have more time in the proofing basket too so hopefully it will work out.

  35. Kat

    So I made it! All in all, it was successful but I will need to jimmy up something with which to cover the next one while baking – I have a very hard crust (nice, don’t mind that at all) but the inside isn’t fully cooked and, I think, *wanted* to spring more. It’s very dense which I like but does have some whopper air holes in it!

    While I love the flavour of it, I think for “everyday” use I’ll minimise the flavourings as eating this every day will inure me to flavoursome bread on special occasions!

  36. Jeannette Holt

    Hi, Eric
    I am a novice to breadmaking, but thanks to your videos and all the helpful comments from fellow bakers, I am learning to make tasty bread. I especially loved the sourdough rye with fennel, anise, caraway and orange. However, none of my bread ever has the “oven spring” I see others getting. My dough seems much wetter than what I see in the videos even though I follow the measurements exactly. If I always use the same brands of flour, would reduce the amount of water help?
    Also, how do I know if the dough has overproofed? I love really sour bread, & understand that a longer, slower proof will give me that, but how long is too long? Thanks.

  37. I have really enjoyed these two Youtubes. Its giving me a better idea of cooking this type of bread as its visually very well presented. I mostly am looking for ideas for outdoor camp (dutch) oven recipes and I find breads are great to do in cast iron. I like the flavours you have used and will use them as suggested by you in the first instance. I see a few find them a bit strong but I usually stick to a recipe the first time 🙂

  38. Mike

    Thanks so much for the sourdough rye recipe & video. My first try came out great – taste, aroma, crust, & crumb were the best I’ve experienced – either homemade or from a bakery. I’m amazed at how light and soft the crumb is – not the typical rye paving stone I’ve made in the past. Here are a couple of pics. All of the videos on your site are a great learning resource.


  39. Kat

    Thanks for that, I’ll be sure and try it 🙂

  40. More vigorous folding might help but even more so would be making the dough stiffer by holding back some water and/or adding more flour. Generally speaking, wetter dough makes bigger holes.

  41. Kat

    Cheers for the quick reply, Eric. I’ll give the oven a go, see how it deals with stuff. That’s very hot (240 or so C) and mine doesn’t get that hot, but to be honest as long as the inside’s nice I’ll happily sacrifice some crust awesomeness.

    I have another question now, for when you have time. In the picture your loaf has lots of air holes, and you mention in the video when you’re folding the dough that you don’t want to “knock it down” much, as in get the gas out of it. I prefer a very dense bread to one with lots of holes and air spaces, so would I then be okay to be a little more vigorous in my folding?

    Love this site so much. I have learnt twice as much about bread as I knew 24 hours ago just reading through it!

  42. Wil

    Hi Eric, made your Rye today. Just had it with lunch and it has a great robust flavor which I really like. Just a couple of comments. My younger tasters said the anise was a little overpowering. I understand that anise can be powerful and the next time I am going to use 1/2 tsp. To be honest I couldn’t taste it. It may have something to do with younger taste buds. The other thing I might do is go to my standard 16oz (8oz each) of flour and only 1 1/2 cups of water. The original recipe was really, really wet and I had to adjust with a couple of tbls spoons more of each flour. I was wondering if by you grinding your own rye, it absorbed more of the water? Anyway, I am making it my Rye recipe with just those minor adjustments. As usual you da bread man, thanks!


    • Hi Wil,

      That’s a good question about the absorption of fresh milled grain. I’m just guessing, but it does kind of seem like once grain is milled it would be more prone to picking up moisture from the air, so I’d bet your hunch is right. Even so, people have a wide range of experiences no matter what the source of flour. That’s why I like the whole video thing. I’m hoping it’s a little easier to judge the consistency via video than from a book.

      I was wondering if people would find this recipe a tad on the strong side. Turns out many do. Easy to throttle back though, as you’re planning.

  43. Kat

    This is awesome, thanks for your time and dedication! I’m assuming you use Fahrenheit for your oven temps? I’m in Australia so use Celcius, but that’s easy enough to tinker with. My oven, though, has two speeds – go and stop. How important is the precise temperature for this recipe?

    You have a lovely kitchen – I’m so envious 🙂

    • Hi Kat,

      Yes, it’s Fahrenheit. Being able to control your oven temp would sure make it a lot easier. However, people have been baking (presumably good) bread in wood fired ovens, without precise temperature controls, for a gazillion years. Maybe your situation is similar. If you have an instant read thermometer to test when the bread is done baking, that would certainly help a lot.

  44. Paul

    I just baked a loaf of this and it is amazing! I’m usually partial to lean, non-enriched breads – but wow, this is good! Just before scoring, I misted the dough with water, then sprinkled coarse kosher salt over it. It really turned out well… makes me want to make Reubens tonight!

  45. Gaby

    Hi Eric,
    I use to bake bread as a hobby, and I appreciate a lot your site and learned a lot from your videos. I already prepared twice the rye bread and it was a real success. Thank you.
    Though I liked very much the swedish style, the second time I used 1tbs caraway seeds and only 1 tsp fennel seeds. Rye with caraway is a classic. Both styles were wonderful with honey and goat cheese !
    Another change I made and I would like to suggest, is using a rye starter for this bread. I don’t keep different starters, I just feed a small quantity (1 tbs) of my usual starter twice or three times with rye flour. Using a rye starter enhanced more the specific rye smell and taste of the bread.
    The small quantity that was left of the rye starter, I mixed it with my usual starter, I think it invigorates and improves its taste.
    Thank you again,

  46. Madelyn

    Tried this the first chance I got. Wonderful aroma. Delicious combination of flavors. Followed recipe to the T. I used my sour-dough starter. I probably will reduce my water a little because my starter is not as stiff as yours. The dough started to spread as soon as it was released from the confines of its proofing container so I had a very large (in diameter) loaf. I did manage to get a nice oven spring and the texture looks just like your cross-section picture. I noticed that eaten hot/warm the bread is a little too wet and doughy. I had to let it cool to cut cleanly, but flavor was sooo good warm. I love to toast these no-knead ryes. I do weigh my flours so I think its the fluid from the starter that may be too much so I will experiment with reducing that. Thanks very much for a very delicious easy rye variation!

  47. Thank you, Karil. Going to town to get some anise seed today! I wish we could e-mail without me putting up my e-mail address here. I think if you click on my name, you could open my blog and perhaps post something there and I would not have to put it on the web. That is, if you are willing. Of course, if you are not! I will not be offended!

    Eric, I made another of these loaves yesterday. I used the thicker starter and it helped a lot. HOWEVER, not knowing it was important to only heat the la cloche in the oven for 30 minutes (as my kitchen was cold and I wanted it to warm up a bit) I had the la cloche in there much longer and the outside of my loaf got rather burned. Now I know why you specify 30 minutes! Duh. Thanks again for this great recipe.

  48. Karil

    Hi Yolanda, Here is the revised recipe for Knäggebrod, just as I made it a couple of days ago. They turned out perfectly, and are already completely devoured.


    (A) Combine and cool to room temperature:

    420 g scalded milk
    60 g butter

    (B) Combine and add to the HOT milk:

    1 Tbsp. Anis Seed (The seeds will soften and infuse the milk with their flavor.)
    30 g granulated sugar
    1 tsp. salt

    (C) Mix together:

    1 Packet of Instant Yeast (11 g)
    550 g All-Purpose Flour (plus some for kneading & rolling out the dough)

    (D) Combine (A&B) and (C) and mix well (the Danish Dough Whisk works perfectly here). Knead very briefly.



    Can be baked on cookie sheets, however, if you have a baking peal and a baking stone, this would be even better. You can flour the peal and roll each flatbread driectly on the peal and then slide it onto the baking stone. Preheat the oven (and the baking stone) to 240°C (220°C for convection ovens).

    (1) Knead the dough briefly: it should be very soft and supple. Quite a bit of flour will be used for rolling out the dough, so do not use too much in making the dough. Cover and allow to rise until double (about an hour).

    (2) Punch down lightly and cut into ten pieces. Gently form into balls and place on a floured surface. Dust the tops with flour and cover loosely with plastic.

    (3) Place the baking stone on the lowest rack of the oven and preheat the oven and the baking stone.

    (4) Roll out a ball of dough very, very thinly (1-2 mm). It is easiest to do this directly on a floured wooden peal (a piece of floured parchment paper will also do). Lift the thin disk and reflour the surface. Pass over the disk several times with a Swedish Knäggebrod rolling pin (which thins the loaf even more) (If you do not have such a rolling pin, puncture the loaf densely with a fork. The rolling pin, however, is far more effective in thinning the disk—it becomes almost like lace.) Make certain that the dough does not stick to the surface.

    (5) Slide the disk onto the baking stone and bake until dry and slightly colored. The edges will turn golden and there may be some golden spots, but do not over bake. Very thin loaves take about 4 minutes on a baking stone. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.

    (6) While each loaf bakes, roll out the next loaf.

    (7) Cool thoroughly and then store airtight. The bread is best after at least 24 hours of storage and gets better with time. It can be stored for quite a long time in an air-tight container.


  49. Doris

    Hi Eric,
    this the loaf that I baked in the Roemertopf on convection heat at a temperature of 460 F and taking off the lid towards the end. I did however have to increase the baking time since this loaf was made with a very wet soaker of various whole grains and contained a lot of moisture. This the first time that I have had real success with this recipe. Thanks for your suggestion about using a cloche or roemertopf for baking.


  50. Robert

    Magnificent, Erik!
    Thank You so much! I just finished a first foray into rye last wkend, converting the Reinhart recipe for Swedish limpa and also his NY Deli rye from Bread Baker’s Apprentice (sourdough only). Both were satisfying, and the reading about working with rye dough finally helped me get my 100% spelt loaf to fully rise & get some open crumb. ‘Was very glad to hear you talk about what it’s like to work the low-glutin doughs – both the kneading and the rise during fermentation & proof. That made all the diff. for my spelt also.
    I noticed you used FRESH ground rye. I thought flour had to age for a week or so – but the results speak for themelves.
    Thank You again! All best to you & yours.

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