Have you ever tried gluten-free bread & thought: oh this is pretty awful? Or been shocked at the cost of a tiny loaf? I have. Over the years I’ve tested countless recipes I’ve found in cookbooks & online as well as developing my own recipes in search of a good gluten-free breakfast bread. My parameters: great taste, high in fiber, contain no wheat, be loaded with nuts & seeds for optimal health & have a lovely, dense texture. Finally, I struck gold with this seed & nut bread.
I’m not talking about a bread you’ll use to make a great Italian meat sandwich, but something that’d be scrummy served with a steaming cup of coffee or tea first thing in the morning. Maybe slathered with butter, avocado or served alongside a perfectly cooked egg & some fruit.
In my quest to develop a good, healthy bread recipe, I’ve made both quick breads (they use baking powder or baking soda) & yeast breads (they require time to rise). Both have failed. It wasn’t that they were all terrible, just not what I was looking for. Some had a horrible squidgy texture. I’d read the reviews from some online recipes before embarking on baking: maybe people lie, I don’t know. I never had quite the same enthusiasm for the recipes as others. And too often I’d read “mine didn’t turn out like your pictures” (on others’ recipes darling, not mine). I’ve come to learn this seems to be a common dilemma, especially when diving into the gluten-free world.
‘They’ say necessity is the mother of invention. So here is a quick-bread recipe I developed, loaded with nutrients from hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, oats (which are technically gluten-free), dried fruit & psyllium that really WORKS! It’s simple to make – all the ingredients are combined together in a bowl, spooned into a loaf pan & baked for a little over an hour. Once the loaf cools, it’s sliced, then wrapped in individual portions & frozen. Two slices is a portion & there’s enough for a couple of weeks. And it’s really good. Did I mention that already?! Really good.
It looks a little like a loaf cake my nan used to make but this recipe contains a mere 2 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup. Of course, the dates add sweetness but they also keep the bread moist so it’s good toasted or just as-is. The big cheer for this bread is the nutritional value: nuts & seeds contain vitamins, minerals, omega-3, protein & important fiber, lacking from so many people’s diet. A happy, healthy gut can lead to overall good health. It’s true, fiber really is your friend. If you’ve tried gluten-free alternatives in the past & they’ve failed, fear not, it was most likely the recipe than something you did. Give this seed & nut bread a crack. I make it every two weeks. I promise you, it works.
- 1 cup sunflower seeds or pepitas (or a combination of both)
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
- 3/4 cup hulled hemp seeds
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries (or cherries)
- 1/3 cup psyllium powder
- 1 to 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 12 medjool dates, pitted & chopped
- 3 tablespoons melted butter or coconut oil
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 1/2 cups water
- Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C). Line base & sides of 9 x 5 x 3-inch (23 x 12 x 7) loaf pan.
- Combine all ingredients together in a large bowl. Spoon mixture into loaf pan; smooth top. Bake 70 to 80 minutes or until a knife comes out clean when inserted into center of bread (cover top of bread loosely after 45 minutes if it's over-browning). Let cool completely in pan. Remove from pan & cut into thin slices. Makes 1 loaf. Cuts into about 26 slices.
- Because this bread is high in fiber, it's advised to drink lots of water when you consume it.