amy chaplin

celebrating the art of eating well

Sprouted spelt bread with seeds

POSTED ON July 18, 2009

sprouted spelt bread with seeds

sprouted spelt bread with seeds

“Sprouts represent the point of greatest vitality in the life cycle of a plant.”

Paul Pitchford, Healing with Whole Foods

When I read this today, I thought that’s what I want to make bread out of….not flour that has been sitting around in a shop for god knows how long.
Most people don’t love sprouted bread. They envisage a heavy, sticky and dense loaf that is annoying because it breaks in the toaster; then never try it again. The bread I made today is moist and cakey with a rich malty flavor.  Actually, I don’t think of it as bread, I think of it as a great way to eat a nutrient dense whole grain that’s easy to digest too!

And there is a way to toast sprouted bread – on a griddle or skillet, over medium heat….. I think the reason I like it made this way is because it takes me back to cold winter mornings as a child, huddled around the combustion stove toasting bread directly on top.  The toast got a delicious charred flavor; a skillet gives that same effect and prevents annoying breaking.

The spelt in this bread is sprouted first, then ground to form a dough. To begin the sprouting process you have to soak grains overnight (as you did here). Pre-soaking  removes phytic acid which interferes with the assimilation of minerals. Sprouting takes it a step further and increases the vitamin and nutrient content dramatically.
I know you’re probably thinking: no way, I’m not going through the whole process of sprouting grains before I make bread!  Well, the thing is it’s so easy; all you have to do is rinse the grains twice a day for two days then blend and bake, no kneading or proofing required!
Fresh from the oven, it needs no toasting and since I love a savory breakfast my favorite toppings are a smear of chickpea South River Miso (out-of-this-world, handmade miso that I’ll have to get into another day) avocado and some kind of kraut. This is so satisfying and will keep you well nourished for hours.


favorite topping

favorite toppings

ready to sprout

before and after one day

before and after one day

two days old

two days old

oven ready

oven ready

fresh out of the oven

fresh baked

sliced bread

sliced bread

Sprouted spelt bread with seeds

2 cups spelt berries
¼ teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons toasted sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon flax seeds
extra virgin olive oil, for oiling the baking dish

For variation try adding dried fruit, nuts or spices instead of the seeds.

Wash grains and place in a large wide mouth jar (Mason Jar works well), cover with 2 inches of filtered water and soak overnight.
Strain, rinse and cover with a cheese cloth or gauze-like fabric secured with a rubber band.

Place in a dark, cool place (like a cupboard) on a 45 degree angle (top end down) I usually place a folded cloth under the mouth of the jar to absorb any liquid that drains off. Rinse grains twice a day, you will see tiny sprouts by the end of the first day, very exciting!

Once the sprout is almost the length of the grain, nibble on a few and then put them in the fridge until you want to make bread. Use within 3 or 4 days.

Pre-heat oven to 225 degrees (Fahrenheit)
Generously oil a baking dish and set aside.
Place sprouts in the bowl of a food processor and blend for a couple of minutes until mixture resembles a dough. Add the seeds and pulse a few times to combine.
Gather dough and shape into a log and place in oiled baking dish.

Bake for 2 hours. Bread will smell sweet and rise a little, since the bread is made from sprouts that can be eaten raw, you don’t have to worry about whether it is cooked through.
Allow to cool before removing from the baking dish.

Slice carefully as this bread crumbles easily. Well wrapped, it will keep up to two weeks in the fridge and can an be stored frozen for months.

POSTED IN Baked Goods

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  • Laura says:

    Do you sprout legumes the same way?

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      Yes, the time they take to sprout will depend on the bean. Mung beans are very quick. Becareful not to break the sprout when rinsing them.

  • Bonnie says:

    This bread looks delicious!! Your photos are so clean and fresh ! I can’t wait to try it out. Yum!!

  • Michael says:

    I bought 2 cups of local spelt berries this morning at the McCarren Park green market (from Cayuga, and was hoping to make bread with them.

    I found your blog through Our Daily Table ( and behold, a recipe for sprouted spelt bread. The grain just went into the water to sprout and I can’t wait to make the bread!

    Thank you!

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      I’m so glad you found the recipe. I also used cayuga spelt berries. Just watch them closely in this hot weather, they grow fast. I just did a batch that over sprouted, which is fine for eating but makes the bread too wet. Happy bread making!

  • Erin says:

    This looks outstanding…I’d love to make it and would greatly appreciate knowing what size baking dish you used. Thanks!

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      Hi Erin,

      I made it in a dish that is 5″ by 7″, some people just mould it into a log shape and then bake it, it will spread, but how much depends on how moist your sprouts are. I guess its safer to use a dish and it is so delicious when fresh!
      Let me know how you like it!

  • Erin says:

    Thank you so much! I’ll let you know how it comes out!

  • Siobhan says:

    looks great.I’ve sprouted the Spelt. Do I leave the oven at225 for the two hours…

  • Siobhan says:

    When i left it at 225 for two hours it was burnt to a crisp

  • Amy Chaplin says:

    I am sorry to hear that….I have always baked it this way. Maybe your oven runs high? A good way to know is by putting one of those hanging thermometers in and see if it reads the same. I must do that too, maybe mine runs low? So sorry it didn’t work out 🙁 Hope you’ll try again!

  • Siobhan says:

    i will.. i’ve just sprouted some more.. would a fan oven affect the temp and time

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      I find convection ovens grerat for baking, they don’t effect temp but may affect time a little.
      Maybe reduce your oven temp to 150 and check it after 20 mins.
      Let me know how it goes!

  • Miranda says:

    Could you do this with any other sprouted grains?
    i have some red winter wheat that i could sprout.
    Also, i use a piece of window screen as my jar mesh: works great and is easy to rinse the water right through without having to remove first.

  • Anu says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe. I’ve made it a few times now, and I think it has become a staple. I’ve always been puzzled by sprout bread and hadn’t found a good way to make it. I love your version! It is delicious and comes out perfect for me every time. (Even my cats love it. Once I left it out on the counter overnight to cool, and next morning, half of it was gone!! I had to laugh. They still demand their share whenever I eat it.)

    Thanks, and best wishes.

  • Danielle says:

    Making this right now! It’s in the oven! Praying it turns out as good as yours!

  • irie travel says:

    Have you ever tried making spelt bread without the seeds, or do the seeds play a big part in holding it together??

  • rosalia says:

    Made the bread today. It was delicious! Thank you Amy!
    I was wondering what your thoughts are if I used barley berries as an alternative sometimes.
    Also I was thinking of sprouting lentils and adding them to the spelt. What do you think?

  • Melissa Sproul says:

    Hi Amy i am going to try this bread it looks so easy, i was wondering though can you use brown rice, Quinoa ,soy or chickpeas instead of the spelt berries?

    • You could try adding some sprouted quinoa or sprouted and ground chickpeas, but I wouldn’t replace all of the spelt…maybe start with 1/4 or a 1/3. I would love to know how it comes out, send a photo!

      Happy baking.

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      You could try replacing some of the spelt with srouted quinoa or sprouted ground chickpeas…maybe start with 1/4 or 1/3 first.
      Let me know how it goes, take a pgoto.
      Happy baking!

  • iheartsuperfoods says:

    if the spelt doesnt get a tail, is there something wrong? i sprouted mine for 2 days and no tail just soggy spelt 🙁

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      Yes sometimes grains won’t sprout. Make sure they are not partially refined or “pearled” as refined grains can’t sprout.
      Just compost and start over.
      Are you rinsing enough and draining them well?They should smell good, not like they’re rfermenting.
      If they are too wet it may effect them too….let me know how number two goes.
      Good luck!

  • Neil says:

    Thank god, a recipe with pictures and a clear description. Those ingredients – is that it? Nothing else? If i want to make it twice as big do i just double and for how long do you bake in oven?
    Also, does this work in a bread machine and how would i do it?

  • phoebe says:

    I have been so excited watching my spelt sprout over the past few days – bread currently in the oven! I’m a little nervous though as I don’t think my sprouts were ‘doughy’ enough – there seems to be a lot of visibly whole grains. Waiting to see if it’s a disaster or not!

    I’ve been reading your blog regularly over this year and have fallen in love with your cooking. Thank you for reminding me of what I love to cook.

    • phoebe says:

      definitely not my finest hour. it didn’t seem to rise. I think I probably didn’t process enough, and the oil from the tin kind of seeped into the bread.

  • Kat says:

    This is absolutely delicious. I was worried that I couldn’t do it (hopeless cook) but it worked. With the leftover slices a few days later I made Bread Pie and this bread made the dish. Love ur photos too. Thanks!

  • tasleem says:

    Hi Amy, this recipe looks great. Does it toast well in a toaster? Thanks.

  • Colleen says:

    Oh my goodness! What a fabulous recipe. I have just pulled it out of the oven and spread some nut butter made in the vitamix. How delicious! Texture was dense and purely luscious. Thank you so much for this beautiful recipe.

  • sonia says:

    Are spelt berries the same as spelt grain and will the bread turn out ok if I just use spelt and not add any of the seeds to it?

    • Amy Chaplin says:

      Hi Sonia,

      If you grind the spelt berries into the flour it will work the same, otherwise they are a whole grain and not flour and won;t work the same in bread. If you leave out seeds it should be fine.


      • sonia says:

        Ok thankyou. I am still a little confused though. When looking at spelt berries and spelt grain they both look the same, are they not?

  • Vivian M says:

    Hi Amy,
    I made the bread but mine didn’t rise. Not sure what I did wrong. Would love to know if you have any suggestions. Thanks.

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