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Wholegrain Bread Multigrain Bread – Schwarzbrot

whole grain bread Schwarzbrot Dark Rye bread

The German Schwarzbrot is a whole grain bread that is often mixed up with Pumpernickel. They are indeed very similar but the German Schwarzbrot contains a lot of whole grains and it is baked and dried while the Pumpernickel usually is just made with flour and is baked on steam for almost a day. They also taste different.

 

The grains in this bread are often Rye berries and therefore some people also refer to this bread as Dark Rye Bread. I like to use a mix of grains and I found cracked grain mixes to be perfect for this bread.

 

Pumpernickel

I personally am not a big fan of Pumpernickel since I think it tastes somewhat bitter but I really like our German Whole Grain Bread. It is a little sweet and the longer you chew it, the sweeter it tastes. But it’s not a sugar-like sweetness, it’s still a little different, hard to explain!

Is Whole Grain Bread Healthy?

The fact that this bread has whole grains makes it very healthy. In Germany, of course, we know this since a very long time but a team of international scientists has done some digging into the whole grain topic and in 2017 they published an article about their findings in the British Medical Journal.

Their conclusion:

Whole grain can protect from Diabetes Type 2, obesity and yes, even from Cardiovascular diseases. With just 90g of whole grains daily, one can enhance their lifespan and decrease the risk of diseases like cancer, stroke, cardiovascular diseases, infectious illnesses, and even respiratory diseases. The seedling and the shell of the grains contain a lot of nutrients like protein, minerals, and vitamins – especially vitamin B which many people lack. Iron, Zinc, and Magnesium are crucial for our health and wellbeing and are plenty in the whole grains.

Dark Rye bread, black bread

Phytic Acid

Some people argue that the phytic acid, which is contained in seeds, prevents the intake of Iron, Zink, and Magnesium. Luckily, there are things that break down the phytic acid like soaking the grains or sprouting. When baking this whole grain bread, you will soak your grains for 24 hours, problem solved! The phytic acid is basically no more detectable in the bread. [More about Phytic Acid]

It takes time …

… to bake this bread! I recommend starting in the morning or evening, the day before you want to bake this bread. Soak the grains until the next morning and then start making the dough for the bread. Let it rise, dry, bake during the afternoon and you have your delicious bread finished the day after. Watch the video to the very end to see how I eat my whole grain bread.

Once your bread is finished, put it into a plastic bag overnight. The next morning you can enjoy it and if you made more than one loaf, just freeze it. Take out some slices every time you want to eat some, let it thaw and I promise, it tastes just as good as if it was just baked! If your bread dries out, it also tastes very delicious if you put it in the toaster.

Make a Larger batch!

Because it takes so long to make this bread, why not making 4 to 5 loaves at a time! If you have never had this bread, I would recommend though, to first try one and see if that’s to your taste and then make the larger batch next time. The ingredient quantities for 4 to 5 loaves are in this PDF File:
German Whole Grain Bread 4-5 loaves

Useful links:

My favorite ways to eat this bread:

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whole grain bread Schwarzbrot Dark Rye bread

German Whole Grain Bread – Schwarzbrot: 1 LOAF

Barbara
4.50 from 4 votes
Course Bread, Breakfast, Dinner
Cuisine German
Servings 1 loaf

Equipment

1 loaf pan

Ingredients
 
 

Pre Dough

  • 30 g Sourdough Starter
  • 200 g Grains (rye or grain mix)
  • 70 g rye flour
  • 240 ml water

Bread Dough

  • 50 g Flax Seeds
  • 80 ml boiling Water
  • 70 g all purpose flour
  • 70 g Einkorn or Spelt Flour
  • 50 g Sunflower Seeds or Pumpkin Seeds
  • ¼ to ½ Tbsp. Molasses
  • 12 g salt
  • 3 g bread spice
  • 5 g dry yeast

To feed the Sourdough

  • 75 g all purpose flour
  • 75 ml water

Instructions
 

Make the Pre-Dough

  • 12 to 24 hours before you want to bake your bread, fill the ingredients for the pre dough into a very large bowl. After adding the water, stir all ingredients very well.
  • Cover the bowl and set it aside at a warm place.
  • [To refill your sourdough: Put your remaining sourdough into a small bowl and add 75 g of all purpose flour and 75 ml of water. Stir and put it back into it’s jar. Let the Sourdough stand in the kitchen for 24 hours, then put it back into the fridge until you bake with sourdough again.]

Making the Bread Dough

  • 24 hours after mixing the pre dough, bring the 80 ml of water to a boil, fill the flax seeds in a bowl and pour the boiling water over the flax seeds. Let stand for 1 hour.
  • Now add all the remaining ingredients – exept for the salt – into the large bowl with the predough. Also add the Flax seeds and mix all very well.
  • Add the salt and mix very well, use your hands if possible. The dough is more of a mash or pap than regular dough. If the dough is too dry, add a little more water but don't make it too wet. Watch the video to see the right consistency.
  • Grease the baking pan and fill it ¾ high with the dough. Use some water and a brush and brush the water on top of the dough.
  • Cover the baking pan and let stand in a warm place until your dough has significantly increased its size.
  • Preheat the oven to 50°C / 120°F or to the lowest temperatur to which your oven can be set.
  • Brush some water onto the bread again and then put it into the oven for 90 minutes.
  • Increase the oven temperature to 150°C / 300°F and backe the bread for 60 minutes.
  • Lower the oven temperature to 100°C / 210°F and bake for another 2.5 hours.
  • After the bread has baked, let it cool completely, then put it in a plastic bag overnight.
  • The next day you can use the bread or freeze it for later.
  • Tip: You can also add some whole hazelnuts to the bread dough!
Keyword baking, Bread, vegan, vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

The ingredient quantities for 4 to 5 loaves are in this PDF File:
German Whole Grain Bread 4-5 loaves

About The Author

11 thoughts on “Wholegrain Bread Multigrain Bread – Schwarzbrot”

  1. Hello Barbara.
    I am trying to find the honeyville 9 grain cereal mix and/or the other 9 grain mix but it is impossible to ship to Canada. I looked on amazon and it is very expensive to get many of these grain mixes. I have only found some grains in a gift box set by the company food to live. (Organic Grains in a Gift Box — Amaranth Seeds, Hulled Barley, Buckwheat Groats, Rye Berries, and Millet Seeds). As you can see, the red and white wheat berries are not in there. With what do you think I could replace these grains as I find them too expensive. Would the Schwarzbrot taste similar if these grains are replaced or not in there?
    Danke für deine hilfe. Alles ist so kompliziert hier.

    1. Hi Mariane,
      you can replace the grains with grains that are available to you and at a price that is working for you. Leaving them out would not work. So, if you can get your hands on some cheaper grains in your area, just use those.

  2. 5 stars
    Oh, my!!!! This bread tastes absolutely wonderful! Takes me back to my childhood in Germany! The foods I remember fondly are brotchen, strueseltaller, and this bread along with the various array of meats and cheeses. Thank you so, so much for giving me a way to recreate this amazing bread in my little Texas home. Please keep sharing your amazing recipes!!!

  3. Karin Chapman

    Hi I watched your video on the schwatzbrot and I would like to know the amount of ingredients for the larger batch of bread the recipe only has it for one pan .would you mind giving me the recipe for the larger batch.? Thank you so much . I am from Germany as well from Bremerhaven and I miss my schwartzbrot so much . I love all of your videos .

    1. Hi Karin,
      I have added a pdf file to the post in the section “Make a Larger Batch”. It contains the ingredients for 4 to 5 loaves of this batch. Happy baking!

  4. andrea m thannhauser

    I have baked several of your rye breads recently they have such nostalgia for me since I use to eat them for supper when I was a little girl living in Germany.
    I have a question regarding your German Whole Grain Bread which calls for 80 g of salt. Might this be a typo? Thinking this seemed much higher than some of your other bread recipes I only used 70g but till felt it seemed too salty for my tastes.
    The other comment I’d like to make regarding this recipe is that I find it best to stir the 24 hour sponge once or twice while its melding, because my first experience with this recipe had the grains collecting in the middle of the pot looking like a volcano and the water around the outside of it. Now I know I had stirred that pre dough/sponge well. I thought that might be helpful.
    Thanks for sharing your recipes, I love them so.

    1. Hi Andrea,
      the 80g are not a typo, it’s the original recipe. But it is totally ok to reduce the amount. With other bread I usually have 10g to 12g of salt so if you want to lower the amount of salt, maybe use 50g to 60g. I don’t know why this recipe needs more salt than other bread but I didn’t feel like it’s too much. But everyone has a different taste and I am wondering anyway, if I should redo this recipe for just one loaf. Maybe then I experiment with less salt and see how that sits with me.
      Thank you for your input and I hope your next bread will taste just as you like it.
      Best,
      Barbara

  5. 4 stars
    Hello!
    Could you please let me know where I could buy the ingredients in Germany? I just moved here and my husband loves the dark bread. I would love to try to bake it myself but have no idea how the key ingredients are called in German and where I could get them.
    Thanks!!

    1. Hi Nora,
      I am happy to help! Many groceries in Germany carry most of these ingredients but if you are living in a more rural area, it might not be the case and during Corona times, one probably never knows what’s just out of stock and what’s not carried. But let me try to help as good as I can.
      Grains are usually sold at places called “Reformhaus”. They might have different names in different regions so it would be best to google the word Reformhaus together with the name of your town/city/village or “near me” and see what comes up. If you can’t find any, try “Bio Markt” to find organic groceries.
      Sourdough = Sauerteig
      grains = Körner
      grain mix = Körnermischung
      Rye flour = Roggen Mehl
      Flax Seeds = Leinsamen
      AP flour is usually 405 flour or as a bread flour 505 (if I remember that right)
      Einkorn flour = Einkorn Mehl
      Spelt flour = Dinkel Mehl
      Salt = Salz
      Bread Spice = Brotgewürz (comes in small pouches)
      Molasses = Melasse or also called Zuckersirup
      Yeast = Hefe
      It might be difficult to get everything as many groceries won’t have yeast and also might be out of flour.
      Good luck and I hope you enjoy your time in Germany! I must admit, I am a little bit jealous since I am currently homesick to see my daughter in Hamburg.

      Best, Barbara

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