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Rye Bread Mixed – German Bakery Version

rye bread recipe from german bakery

This Rye Bread is a winner of a German contest of bakeries. It is very easy to make and always turns out perfectly and delicious with a wonderful crust.

I am baking this bread since weeks and we never get tired of it. Even the kids (who are teens but will always be called “kids”) are total fans of it!

Even though I sometimes make this bread a little differently, it still always turns out amazing. I sometimes substitute some of the wheat flour with whole wheat flour or spelt flour.

Here is my Twist

As you have learned in my post about SOURDOUGH STARTER, it needs to be fed on a regular base. And every time I feed it, I either need to use it for a bread or just discharge some and feed the remaining sourdough starter. Now, I have three different batches of sourdough starter and I can’t bake that much bread. So instead of discarding some of the starter, I mix all these sourdoughs together. Then I use it in this rye bread recipe for the sourdough (sometimes also called pre-dough).

German sourdough rye bread

Since it is much more sourdough starter than the recipe asks for, I reduce the amount of added flour and water in order to end up with the 480 g of sourdough. Next, I don’t let it rest over night. Instead, I let it rest for 4 to 5 hours and then continue with the bread recipe. This way I don’t loose any sourdough starter but also can make the sourdough and the bread at the same day. I think that’s smart! And it really tastes wonderful. But if you just want to stick to the regular recipe, that is totally fine, too.

How to bake Rye Bread
rye bread recipe from german bakery

Rye Bread Recipe – German Bakery Version

4.80 from 10 votes
Course Bread
Cuisine German
Servings 2 loafs


For the Sourdough

  • 30 g sour dough starter
  • 240 g rye flour (light or dark)
  • 240 ml water

For the Bread

  • The sourdough from above (480 g)
  • 360 g rye flour
  • 400 g wheat flour
  • 450 – 500 ml water
  • 20 g fresh yeast or 7g dry yeast
  • 20 g salt


Making the Sourdough

  • Mix the sourdough starter with the water.
  • Add the flour and stir until all ingredients have mixed well.
  • Cover and set aside at a warm room temperature over night or for 16 hours.

The Bread dough

  • From the Sourdough, set 30 g aside for the next bread (see post about sourdough).
  • Mix the remaining 480 g sourdough with the flours, yeast and the water, add the salt and knead for about 10 minutes.
  • Put the dough in a wooden board or kitchen counter with some flour under it, so it won't stick.
  • Let the dough rest for 10 minutes.
  • Put some flour into two proofing baskets so the dough won't stick. If you don't have proofing baskets, just let it rest in a baking pan.
  • Divide the dough into two batches and put each batch into a proofing basket.
  • Let the dough proof for about 50 minutes.
  • After 40 minutes, put a baking sheet into the oven and preheat the oven to 250°C / 480°F. Let the baking sheet get hot in the oven!
  • When the oven has reached the temperature, flip the bread onto the hot baking sheet.
  • Spray the oven wall with water or add an ovenproof bowl with some water – this will creat the nice crust of the bread.
  • After 10 minutes, open the oven door and let the steam out of the oven.
  • Also after this time, reduce the oven temperature to 180°C / 350°F and continue to bake your bread.
  • The remaining baking time depends on the size and shape of your bread. For my bread it usually needs 25 to 30 minutes, but the original recipe states "35 to 50 minutes".
    You can check if your bread is ready, by knocking on the bottom of your loafs. If it sounds hollow, it is ready. If not, it needs more time.
Keyword baking, Bread
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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29 thoughts on “Rye Bread Mixed – German Bakery Version”

  1. 5 stars
    Excellent recipe. Fed my rye starter last night to end up with exactly 480 grams which was ready to use this morning. I made an oblong dough which I flipped directly onto a preheated pizza stone after doing the boiling water on the preheated lava rocks trick. The rest of the dough when into a dutch oven. I forgot to turn down the oven at the 10 minute mark. Nonetheless, they both turned out beautifully.

    1. I used to get fresh yeast here in Houston but not any more so I am using dry yeast now. It doesn’t matter if it is instant or active, either way, it will work.

        1. The 20g are for fresh yeast but I didn’t make that clear in the recipe, you are right. And since fresh yeast is so difficult to get outside of Europe, I just added that it can be substituted by 7g yeast.

  2. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe. If we wanted to make a dark rye bread, do you know how much molasses and cocoa powder needed?


    1. Hi Mark,
      I have a recipe for a whole grain bread that might resemble what you want to bake: https://mygerman.recipeswholegrain-bread-multigrain-bread-schwarzbrot/
      The amount of molasses depends on the amount of flour you are using and I actually don’t know a recipe without grains that would help with this answer. As of the cocoa: There is absolutely zero cocoa in German rye bread. I know that some American bakery companies use cocoa to give their bread a darker tint so it appears to be healthier and look like whole-wheat bread while it is not.
      I will be publishing a new bread recipe with a dark color, soon. There is no molasses (or cocoa) in it but the color of the bread is very dark. I just filmed it yesterday and I will need a little time with post production to publish it.

      I hope this helps you a little.
      Best, Barbara

    1. I use either AP flour or bread flour – it depends on what I have on hand. Both work for me. If you want to use whole wheat flour, you might need a little more water since it takes in more water and you don’t want your bread to be too dry.

  3. 5 stars
    Hello, Barbara,
    I am going to make this using my sourdough starter (pretty young one) with addition of dry yeasts and some molasses. 20g salt sounds quite a lot, but I will try anyway :-). Thank you for the recipe!
    I made 100% rye sourdough bread in the past, but it was bit heavy to my taste.
    Do you use all-purpose white flour or the bread flour in this recipe?

  4. i have been buying german dark rye or sourdough bread from the supermarket, and would like to make my own. I tried a few recipes but it’s not that good. is there a similar recipe with whole wheat – rye mixed like this one you posted, but no need sourdough starter? would like to start off with something simple, preferably baked in a bread machine if at all possible ? but oven is also ok.

    1. Hi Jenny,

      for a rye bread, you always need sourdough. It doesn’t work with yeast alone. If you don’t want to go through the trouble of making and / or caring for a sourdough starter, you can buy packages of dried sourdough online and use that according to their instructions. I hope this will help you.

  5. I am learning to make bread and hoping to get to this level. This is, hands down, my favorite bread! Thank you for all of your info. Great site.

  6. I have a question… once you open the oven door at the 10 min mark… does it stay open for the rest of the bake or just for a couple minutes?
    I am planning on making this for my in-laws who have strong German roots… so, I want to make sure I get this right :)

    thank you,

    1. Hi JJSE,
      you just open the oven for a short time to release the steam. It’s about 30 seconds.


    1. Hi,
      I am not sure what you mean. Do you want to skip the sourdough? I can’t answer that with certainty since it’s a bread with rye flour, which needs sourdough to rise. If you want to try it with just yeast anyway, I would think that 7g to 10 g would be what you need on 500 g of flour. If it’s not enough, just increase the proofing time of the dough.

      1. Jagannath P M

        Thank you for the prompt response Barbara…I would also like to know why you use yeast in sourdough bread. Can we make the bread using sourdough only?… By the way I love all tour recipes. Thank you.

        1. The yeast gives the sough some extra boost. Since I describe in the post how to make sourdough at the first place, a fresh sourdough is usually a little weak. The yeast helps with that. You can use only sourdough if you prefer. Btw. there is always some natural yeast in sourdough.

          1. Jagannath P M

            Got it Barbara. Happy to inform you that our first sourdough has come out well. Our first sourdough rye bread is baking now. Thank you.

      2. P.M.Jagannath

        4 stars
        Thank you for the prompt response madam. Luv all your recipes. I also wanted to know why you also use yeast instead of using only sourdough

    1. No, this one hasn’t a video, yet. Is anything unclear about the recipe? Can I help?

  7. 5 stars
    This turned out absolutely beautiful! I followed your sourdough starter recipe and then just made this bread with spelt flour instead of the wheat. I tried different recipes in the past and this one had the perfect crust to bread ratio ? Reminds me of the bread back home in Germany. Lovely to finally be able to eat proper bread down under in Australia.
    By the way – the Kaiserbrötchen were amazing too. I will try some more of your recipes

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