Texture rich, flavorful and tender, homemade Seeded Multigrain Gluten Free Sourdough Bread is gluten free bread you’ll look forward to eating! This recipe is gluten free and vegetarian or vegan.
Going Gluten Free
Going gluten free for a trial period in the summer of 2018 meant I had to give up my beloved homemade sourdough. After a few weeks of throwing internal fits, I finally decided to explore gluten free flours, and learn the nuances of gluten free baking. I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I finally embraced the challenge.
After much research, creating a gluten free sourdough starter and baking many loaves of gluten free sourdough bread, testing, tweaking and taking notes along the way, I’m sharing my best loaf yet: Seeded Multigrain Gluten Free Sourdough Bread.
How to Make Multigrain Gluten Free Sourdough Bread
This gluten free sourdough bread recipe is simple to make, but you’ll need a gluten free sourdough starter. My starter recipe takes six to seven days to develop, but once you create it and continue to refresh (feed) it, it’ll be on stand-by next time you’re ready to bake! In summary, here’s how to make this GF sourdough bread (see recipe card for details):
- First, prepare the soaker by placing the flax, oats, quinoa, and sunflower seeds into a small bowl. Pour room temperature water over the top of the soaker. Allow to sit overnight (or see shortcut in recipe).
- Second, in a medium bowl, whisk the flours including oat, brown rice, millet, tapioca with psyllium husk powder and salt.
- Third, in a large bowl, whisk your fed starter, water, and maple syrup or honey. Add the flour mixture to the starter/water mixture and mix with a fork.
- Fourth, hand mix in the soaker.
- Fifth, transfer the gf sourdough to a prepared loaf pan, while patting and smoothing the top and rounding the edges of the dough.
- Next, cover with a damp tea towel and ferment for 12-14 hours at room temperature.
- Last, bake the loaf for about an hour.
You’ll notice there is no proof for this recipe, meaning it only rises once (fermentation). Once the loaf is shaped and undergoes bulk fermentation, it’s ready to bake.
After baking, the gluten free sourdough needs to cool completely, at least a few hours before you slice into it! Waiting until the following day is even better as it allows the bread time to cure.
Can I Use Other Gluten Free Flours in this Recipe?
You can certainly give it a go! I’ve tried subbing buckwheat and amaranth flour for millet in this recipe but the bread wasn’t as tender and light. I’ve found thorough trial and error that millet helps give loft to gluten free bread without adding more starch. Also, amaranth was a little too strong for my taste.
What Does this Gluten Free Sourdough Bread Taste Like?
In a word, earthy in such a good way! This gf sourdough bread is texture rich due to the seeds/grains, has a mild oaty flavor, and a chewy interior thanks in part to the binding power of psyllium husk powder, with a nice crisp crust (after toasting).
Because this bread is gluten free, egg and dairy free (yes, vegan gluten free sourdough bread!), mostly whole grain, free of fillers and large quantities of starches, you’ll notice the interior is moist/tacky to the touch. So, it needs to be toasted to bring out its best texture. Sometimes I’ll double toast for breakfast toast, aka, avocado with egg toast.
How Do I Store Gluten Free Sourdough Bread?
After the bread is completely cool, slice it with a serrated knife. The slices can be stored at room temperature in a closed container for up to three days or frozen for longer storage. For freezer storage, slices can go from freezer to toaster directly – this is also when I’ll double toast a slice.
A Few Recipe Notes
- Sourdough discard? Save it, put it in a covered container in the refrigerator and then, make these Gluten Free Sourdough Pancakes or my Gluten Free Sourdough Waffles – they’re freezer friendly!
- Dutch oven? I’ve tried this recipe in a Dutch oven in an effort to make a boule. Without walls of a loaf pan to hold the dough together, it spread way too much and was flat. Stick to a loaf pan ( if not experimenting :D ) .
- Shaping and then transferring the dough to the pan is sticky business. I’ve included two ways in the recipe to get the hardest part of the recipe done: a. shaping prior to putting the dough into the pan or b. shaping the dough after putting it in the pan. I prefer method a. as it produces a better shaped loaf – but it’s harder to do. Note the photos show method b.
- With a 119% hydration, this dough is sticky. But I’ve found gluten free loaves with higher hydration and low starch content have a better rise and produce a more tender crumb.
- One of the flours used in this recipe is oat flour. I DIY oat flour and have a tutorial on the blog if needed.
- Substitutions: I do not recommend subbing any other ingredient for psyllium husk powder. It soaks up the water, gives the bread it’s chew like gluten-full bread has and holds the dough together.
- I’ve tried subbing buckwheat and amaranth flour for millet in this recipe but the bread wasn’t as tender and light. I’ve found millet helps give loft to bread without adding more starch. Also, amaranth was a little too strong for my taste.
- I’ve not attempted subbing a different flour for oat flour.
- Use a scale. In baking, weighing ingredients is important for optimal outcome. I find that especially true in gluten free baking. I recommend investing in a good digital kitchen scale.
So happy to read y’all are enjoying the bread in the comments below. Please note, I’ve not tried the following substitutions, but want to share what the community has offered. Here are a few community notes that may be helpful when making this recipe:
- Maya commented: “I used sorghum flour for the oats and half buckwheat, half white rice for the millet. It might not have risen as much as your photo, but it still turned out great.”
- Kate said: “It worked great – I substituted the same amount of arrowroot powder for the tapioca flour.”
- Sarah said: “Slice thick and when toasted you get the crusty edges and soft spongy center.”
- Jill said: “…substituted the brown rice, millet, and tapioca for an even exchange of the King Arthur cup for cup gluten free. This loaf came out SOOOOO GOOD!”
- Leah said: “…sorghum for the oat flour and teff for the millet. I got a nice rise and it came out SO good! The teff really gives it a wheaty flavor, almost like pumpernickel. Both times I left out the soaker and it didn’t seem to be a problem.”
Seeded Multigrain Gluten-Free Sourdough Bread
For the Soaker:
- 3 Tbs Whole Flax Seeds
- 3 Tbs Whole Rolled Oats gluten free
- 3 Tbs Red or Tricolor Quinoa rinsed under running water
- 3 Tbs Hulled Sunflower Seeds
- 1/3 C (80g) Water room temperature
For the Bread:
- 1/3 C + 2 Tbs (100g) Gluten Free Sourdough Starter previously fed, and doubled in size
- 2 1/2 C + 2 Tbs (605g) Water 80F (27C)
- 3 Tbs Maple Syrup or Honey
- 1 C (145g) Brown Rice Flour
- 1 C (150g) Millet Flour
- 1 1/4 C (130g) Oat Flour gluten free
- 1/2 C + 1 Tbs (80g) Tapioca Flour
- 3 Tbs Psyllium Husk Powder (NOT whole psyllium husks)
- 3 1/2 tsp Fine Sea Salt or reduce to preference *See note on salt adjustment
- 1-2 Tbs Whole Rolled Oats for sprinkling on top, gluten free
For the Soaker:
- Prepare the soaker by placing the flax, oats, quinoa, and sunflower seeds into a small bowl. Pour room temperature water over the top of the soaker. Leave out at room temperature for about 6-8 hours. If you forget to do this, you can pour hot water (hot to touch) over the soaker before you start preparing the ingredients for the bread.
For the Dough:
- Line the inside of a 9"x5" (23cm X 9cm) loaf pan with criss crossing parchment with enough hangover on all sides to later help shape the dough and to be used as handles for removing the bread from the pan. If you have clips to clip the parchment to the sides, use them.
- UPDATE 5/20: Some makers have commented that they "poured" the dough into the baking pan. Please note that the dough should be of a sticky thickish batter-like consistency where it is scraped into the pan, for A. shaping OR the dough should be a consistency where it is able to hold together, for B. shaping. >>> It should not be pourable. <<< In order to achieve this batter-like consistency, Psyllium Husk Powder is essential. I do not recommend substituting this ingredient. *If still concerned about a pourable batter, hold a little bit of the water out instead of adding it all at once, then add more as needed. Mix the Dough: In a large mixing bowl, add the starter, water and maple syrup (or honey). Whisk until the starter is incorporated. Set aside.In a medium mixing bowl whisk the brown rice flour, millet flour, oat flour, tapioca flour, psyllium husk powder and fine sea salt. Mix throughly so that when the psyllium husk powder hits the water, it wont clump. To the water/starter mixture add the flour mixture. Use a fork to mix the flour into the water until the dough starts to stiffen, about one minute. The dough will feel like a thick batter. Add the soaker and knead the dough with your hand, incorporating the soaker until the mixture is evenly distributed, about one minute. Use the fork to scrape any excess dough off your hands and fingers. The dough will be very sticky. Set the bowl aside for about 10 minutes to rest. It will stiffen a bit as it rests.
- Shape and Pan the Dough: There are two ways to approach shaping. a. if you're in a hurry or b. if you have a bit more time and patience. Either will work but I find I get a better shape out of b. (note that a. was used in the images seen above). A. Scrape the batter into the loaf pan. Use a moist rubber spatula (remoisten as needed) to gently shape the top nudging the edges of the loaf inward to produce a nice dome shape loaf bread is known for. This takes a little practice and finessing. Just do the best you can. Use the 'handles' of the parchment and pull opposite sides inwards towards the center of the dough, helping to round and shape the edges. Moisten your fingers or small spatula and smooth the top to rid any lumpy areas. B. A bench scraper for this method is needed. Moisten your work surface with a bit of water (I use a spray bottle and sprits it a few times). With moistened fingers, nudge the dough out of the bowl and onto the moist surface. The dough will be very sticky. Re-moisten your hands and pat the dough into a rough rectangle/log a little smaller than the size of the loaf pan using the bench scraper as needed to move the dough. Pat and smooth the edges as needed using wet hands (no flour here), rocking the dough back and fourth to help shape it, smoothing and rounding the top into a rectangular dome. This takes a little practice and finessing, just do the best you can. Using one swift move, scoop up the shaped dough with a bench scraper and transfer it to the loaf pan. Use the 'handles' of the parchment and pull opposite sides inwards towards the center of the dough, helping to round and shape the edges. Do this several times. Moisten your fingers or small spatula and smooth the top to rid any lumpy areas. Use a moist rubber spatula to gently shape the top nudging the edges of the loaf inward to produce a nice dome shape loaves of bread are known for.Now is a good time to refresh (feed) your starter and store it for next time.
- Bulk Ferment: Remove the clips from the pan if using. Cover the dough with a wet tea towel and allow the dough to ferment overnight at room temperature (it's okay if the wet tea towel touches the top of the loaf). Fermentation will take anywhere between 12-14 hours depending on how active your starter is and ambient temperature. In my chilly kitchen at 66F, the dough takes about 14 1/2 hours to rise overnight. There is no proof for this recipe. Go right into baking the loaf after bulk fermentation. The loaf is ready to bake when the dough increases to 1 1/2 times in size and has risen to about 1.1/2" (3.8cm) above the lip of the pan at the center. The dough will spring back when gently pressed on top.
- Bake the Loaf: Place a oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 550F (288C). Lightly spray or brush the top of the dough with water and sprinkle 1-2 Tbs of rolled oats over the top. Decrease the oven temperature to 475F (246C) and bake the loaf 55-60 minutes or until the internal temperature of the bread is between 200F-205F. If the bread starts getting too dark on top, tent the bread with foil. The bread pictured here is untented. After 10 minutes out of the oven, transfer the bread to a cooling rack. Cool completely, at least for two-three hours, better if cured overnight, before slicing into it. You'll notice the bread is very hard, but will soften as it cools.
- How to Store and Enjoy!: After the bread is completely cool, slice it with a serrated knife. The slices can be stored at room temperature in a closed container for up to three days or frozen for longer storage. For freezer storage, slices can go from freezer to toaster directly.You'll notice the interior of the bread to be tacky. This is normal. I find this gluten free sourdough needs to be toasted before it's enjoyed... sometimes double toasted to bring out its best flavor and texture.