Multigrain Sandwich Bread

Seeded Multigrain Sandwich Bread

This Seeded Multigrain Sandwich Bread is the best of both worlds – light and fluffy bread, combined with lots of whole grains and a crunchy, seedy topping.

I have to confess, there are days when I think I’m the only person who eats bread, let alone makes their own. I know that’s not true though. Somebody’s buying all those stacks of bread at the grocery store :) We bread eater/makers just aren’t talking about it!

Well today, I’m talking about it and sharing my latest daily bread of choice. It’s a light and fluffy multigrain sandwich bread, filled and topped with lots of grains. It’s a “best of both worlds” bread, with a light and fluffy texture, combined with some whole grain goodness. And did I mention the lovely, crispy, toasted seed crust?

It’s also a bread that offers a ton of flexibility in terms of how you bake it up and what you fill it with. I baked mine into a large 9×5 loaf. You could do two 8×4 loaves. Or free-form on a baking tray. Or as a round, baked up in a skillet.

For this loaf, I started with a standard “7-grain” cereal mix, together with poppy seeds, sesame seeds and flax meal (I was out of flax seeds). This is the base bread. On top of that, you can add in some more stuff if you like – seeds, dried fruit and/or nuts. For my add-ins, I went with some chopped raw pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries. I’ve added some more add-in ideas in the Cook’s Notes below.

Seeded Multigrain Sandwich Bread

Cook’s Notes for Seeded Multigrain Sandwich Bread

My loaf was made with unbleached all-purpose flour. You could use “white whole wheat” flour or simply replace some of the white flour with whole wheat flour, if you’d like. A couple of notes if you go that route. First, note that the lightness of the bread will be reduced somewhat with the addition of whole wheat flour and second, for best results, replace no more that 1/4 of the white flour with whole wheat flour. Oh, and your rising time is likely to be a bit slower with the addition of whole wheat flour.

As noted above, you can make this bread as one large 9×5 loaf, as two shorter 8×4 loaves, as a free-form loaf that you bake on a baking sheet or as a round, baked up in a cast-iron skillet. Note that baking time will vary depending on which way you go. Refer to the recipe notes below for some guidance there.

If you go the big 9×5 loaf route, be warned that it does take time to bake through, but will look quite done before it actually is. I covered mine with foil after about 20 minutes and then baked pretty much a full 45 minutes. If you have an instant read thermometer, you can take out the guesswork. You’ll want your loaf to be at least 195F before you take it out.

While what you add in to your bread is up to you, be sure to keep to the same quantities. So keep your small seeds (for the pan and topping) in the same amount and keep the “add-ins” that you knead in to the same measurements.

You’ll want to make sure you are starting with a multigrain cereal mix (the kind intended to be hot cereal). It can be 7-grain or 12-grain or whatever. Bob’s Red Mill sells a 7-grain mix or for Canadians, you can find a 7-grain cereal mix at Bulk Barn.

Additional add-ins are completely optional. Feel free to leave out, if you like. Here are some ideas for add-ins though, if you’d like to go that route …

Suggested Add-Ins: walnuts, pecans, any chopped dried fruit (dates, figs, blueberries, cherries etc.), sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds.

Understanding the Different Yeast Types

Instant Yeast – my yeast of choice, it’s a yeast that doesn’t require proofing with warm water and can be added directly to the dry ingredients. It activates well with a wide range of water temperatures (110-130F), so it’s more forgiving. Instant yeast is a two-rise yeast. While Instant Yeast doesn’t require proofing in water, you won’t hurt it if you do, so if you are following a recipe written for active dry yeast, simply go ahead and proof in water per the recipe.

Active Dry Yeast – the classic option, active dry yeast must be activated with warm water with a temperature in the 110F. range. If the water is too hot, it will kill it or too cold and it will not activate. A thermometer is handy here to ensure that proper proofing water temperature. Active Dry Yeast is also a two-rise yeast.

Bread Machine Yeast – similar to Instant Yeast, it is made to be added directly to dry ingredients, such as how ingredients are added to a bread machine. In this respect, it is very similar to Instant yeast, so you could use the two interchangeably.

Rapid-Rise Yeast – this is single-rise yeast, most often used for sweet rolls and quick breads. It works fast, but depletes fast, too. So rather than a first rise, it is usually shaped right after mixing and then has just one rise before baking. It’s quick and easy, but the short rise time doesn’t allow for a lot of flavour to develop. That’s fine for sweet rolls, where there are other flavours going on, but not ideal for classic bread.

Seeded Multigrain Sandwich Bread

Multigrain Sandwich Bread

Light and Fluffy Multigrain Sandwich Bread

Course: Bread
Cuisine: International
Keyword: light multigrain bread, seeded bread
Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings: 14 servings
Energy: 143 kcal
Author: Jennifer

Light and fluffy sandwich bread, filled with multigrain and topped with a delicious and crunch seed mixture.

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Ingredients

Bread:

  • 1/2 cup multi-grain cereal such as 7-grain cereal
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 1/4 tsp active dry or instant yeast
  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour *See Notes
  • 1 Tbsp neutral cooking oil or olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp dark brown sugar or honey
  • 1 1/2 tsp fine salt

Seed Mixture:

  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds

Optional Add-Ins (*See Notes):

  • 1/3 cup chopped dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup chopped raw pumpkin seeds

Instructions

  1. Place multigrain cereal in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a kneading hook. Pour boiling water over, then let stand until mixture cools to between 105°F. and 115°F. for active dry yeast or to about 120F for Instant yeast, about 20 minutes. *Don't rush it. If your mixture is too hot, it may kill your yeast. A thermometer is handy here to make sure of the temperature before adding the yeast.
  2. Sprinkle yeast over cereal mixture. Add 1 cup flour, the oil, brown sugar and salt and stir until smooth. Gradually mix in enough remaining flour to form a smooth, moist dough. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rest 15 minutes.
  3. Turn out dough onto floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if it's sticky, about 5 minutes. **If using add-ins, scatter over the dough and knead into the dough now. **
  4. Oil a large bowl. Add dough to bowl, then flip over the ball of dough so the oiled side is up. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. Prepare the Seed Mixture by stirring together all the seeds in a small bowl. Set aside.
  6. When dough has doubled in size, gently deflate dough by pressing down the dough, then turn out onto lightly floured surface.
  7. If making into loaves: grease one 9x5-inch loaf pan or two 8x4-inch loaf pans. Sprinkle a couple of teaspoons  of the seed mixture into the pan (or divide between two pans). For 8x4-inch loaves, divide dough ball into two equal sized pieces. For 9x5-inch loaf, leave as one piece. For both, roll out into a rectangle - about 10x20-inches for a 9x5 loaf, or two 9x18-inch rectangles fortwo 8x4 loaves. Roll up jelly rolls style, starting with the shortest side, then pinch seams together. Place rolls seam side down into prepared loaf pan(s).

  8. If making a freeform loaf: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Shape loaf into a round or oval shape. Scatter 1/2 of the seed mixture onto the baking sheet (about the size of the loaf) and place loaf on top.
  9. If making a round skillet-baked loaf: Grease a 10/12-inch cast iron skillet well. Sprinkle 1/2 of the seed mixture into the skillet. Form dough into a ball and place into skillet.
  10. For all loaves, cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
  11. Preheat oven to 425F.
  12. Before baking, brush top of loaves with water and sprinkle with remaining seed mixture.
  13. Bake in preheated 425F oven until golden and crusty, about 25-30 minutes for the 8x4-inch loaves/round skillet loaf and up to 45 minutes for the 9x5-inch or freeform loaf. CHECK LOAF after 20 minutes and cover loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil if it's already browned enough.

Recipe Notes

You can replace up to 1 cup of the unbleached all purpose flour with whole wheat flour, if you like. Resulting bread will be a little less light.

Add-Ins are optional, but if using, you can use any large seed (such as pumpkin, sunflower etc), nut (pecans, walnuts etc.) and/or dried fruit. Chop if necessary and keep to the same approximate amount as the recipe suggests (about 2/3 cup total).

 

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57 Comments



  • I can’t get the 7 grain cereal mix, could I use a suitable muesli mix instead? I desperately need to find a recipe to get me light fluffy bread, all my attempts so far are resulting in a too heavy bread.

  • Hi! Can I use bread flour instead of all purpose flour?
    Also instead of substituting the all purpose flour with whole flour entirely, could I do half and half?

    • Hi Sneha, yes, you can definitely use bread flour. As for the whole wheat, yes, half and half would be the most whole wheat I would add to keep some lightness to the loaf. Enjoy!

  • Hi Jennifer,

    Oh my god! Thank you! I still have hope! I will try this and give you an update! Thanks so much!

    Regards,
    Anne

  • Hi Jennifer,

    Thank you for your prompt reply.

    I’m sorry for the trouble.

    Anyway, I found one “Organic Oats Grain&seed” on the internet. I am not sure if I can use this haha. Well, if not I will try other bread recipes from your website.

    Thanks again.

    Anne

    • Hi Anne and no trouble at all! The organic oats, grain and seed sounds perfect. I think that will do nicely for this bread :)

  • Hi Jennifer,

    I would like to know the substitute for multi-grain cereal (7-grain cereal)? I live in Australia, can I use weetbix instead?

    Thanks.

    Anne

    • Hi Anne, Had to google weetbix and now that I have, I would say no. What you want is a loose grain mix – granola-like, but unsweetened/toasted. Do you have a hot cereal mix with loose grains? Something like that would be a better option.

  • Hi,

    I made Multigrain Sandwich Bread from another popular cookbook but bread was very heavy. I am going to make yours this weekend but want to be sure I follow your recipe exact. In step 2, in my mixer with dough hook, how long do I mix the bread for.

    Thank you for the amazing site

    Jerry

    • Hi Jerry and no worries :) In Step 2, you will want to knead with the hook and add flour until you have a smooth dough. For me, that’s usually a 5 minute process of kneading, adding a bit more flour, kneading some more. It’s more important that the dough be smooth (not dry/not sticky), than how long that actually takes. I watch for the dough ball to start to clean the bowl and wrap itself around the dough hook. When you get there, you’re pretty close to done. Enjoy the bread and let me know how you make out!

  • What do you think of using oatmeal instead of the 7-grain/12-grain mixture? Just curious since I have oatmeal on hand but not the grain mixes. Thanks!

    • You could definitely use oatmeal instead of the 7-grain. I suspect you’d need more liquid, as the oatmeal would absorb more than the grain, but other than that, should work :)

  • This loaf is just perfection, Jennifer! I’m loving how seedy it is and the texture looks so light and fluffy! I bet this makes your house smell amazing while it’s baking!! I could seriously demolish an entire loaf of this multi-grain beauty in about .3 seconds. FLAT. Pinning to try! Cheers!

    • Thanks so much, Dawn and yes, I’ve been in the bread baking mood, too. I think it’s the stupidly cold weather these days :)

  • Back when I cooked for a family, I baked bread for them just about every other day. So I got really creative adding nuts and seeds and spices and pesto and what have you just to keep from being bored! Of course it had to pair with the meal …. but thankfully they enjoyed the various tastes, colors, and textures! This seedy bread is beautiful!

    • Thanks Mimi and yes, that’s exactly what I like to do. Just add in whatever I’m feeling at the time. Each one a little different :)

    • Hi Linda, I have absolutely zero experience with a bread machine, so take this for what it’s worth, but here are a couple of thoughts. First, this is quite a large batch of dough. I would think maybe 1 1/2 lb. loaf? So your machine would need to be able to handle that size. Secondly, when you bake it in the machine, is there an option to brush and add seeds on the crust before baking? If so, then maybe it’s all good there. If not, I’d be more inclined to just run it through the dough cycle and then bake off in the oven. You’d hate to miss that seedy crust :)

    • Thanks Mary Ann and yes, I’ve discovered that what I don’t like are the heavy, whole wheat breads. But this one offers up some of that same whole grain, but keeps the light and tasty :) Happy weekend to you, too!

  • Active dry yeast is what most bakers have been using because it is so easy to store. It will keep, in its original packaging, for about a year at room temperature, making it a big improvement from the compressed yeast. However, it is the least active yeast–producing the least amount of gas, because of its large number of dead yeast cells–and must be proofed, that is, rehydrated in warm water, before use. It is a pain to use and a relatively large amount must be used for decent leavening, so often recipes with active dry yeast have a yeasty odor and flavor.

    To improve this yeast, a new type of cooler drying process was invented that resulted in a yeast product that had many more viable cells than the active dry and a finer grain, and so did not need to be proofed before use. This is instant active dry yeast.

    Rather than call this yeast by its name–instant active dry yeast–which is admittedly a mouthful, the yeast companies all use a unique trademarked name for their product.

    Fleischmann’s calls their instant yeast RapidRise yeast.
    Fleischmann’s Bread Machine yeast is RapidRise yeast with ascorbic acid included as an improver.
    Red Star calls their instant yeast Quick-Rise yeast.
    SAF calls their instant yeast Perfect Rise yeast.

    • Great information Steve. Thanks! And yes, I find that Instant yeast is the most confusing for people, for sure. No wonder! :)

      For the record (and for anyone looking for a good instant yeast option), I use SAF Red Instant Yeast. I buy the big package and store it in a container in my freezer. Lasts a long time :) Canadians can find it on the shelf at Bulk Barn, btw.

  • This looks delicious and is on my baking list for next week.

    Q: Re the “add-ins” – is that 2/3 Cup total allowed ? Or is it 1/3 Cup total (cranberries OR pumpkin seeds)?

    Thanks so much !

    • Hi Val. It’s about 2/3 cup total. Since the add-ins are just kneaded in, they don’t really affect the bread much if you do a bit more or a bit less. They just sort of sit there :) I chopped mine up so they were more widely distributed in the bread, but you can leave them whole if you like, as well.

I love hearing from you, so if you have a question or something isn't quite clear, I'm happy to help. If you made this recipe, I'd love to know how you liked it ~ Jennifer

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