It took me a while to build up the courage to make this bread. I had seen versions of this super-healthy, gluten-free-and-vegan, nearly grain-free bread on blogs like My New Roots and Nutrition Stripped, and these loaves of “bread” simply seemed too good to be true. No flour, no eggs, no oil – and yet it was all supposed to stay together? I was a little dubious.
The secret to this recipe is psyllium husk powder. Don’t worry if you’ve never heard of it, I hadn’t either. While I usually have a rule against buying ingredients that I only plan to use in a single recipe, I caved – this bread wouldn’t get off my mind. Psyllium husk powder is typically sold as a dietary supplement. It’s one of the best sources of soluble fiber – which is great for people with GI issues – and it’s been shown to be greatly beneficial to those with conditions like IBS. As a supplement, it can be mixed into water. For this purpose, it’s mixed into the dough and its ultra-absorbent properties work miracles by holding together the dough in a truly unbelievable way. When I was finally ready to attack this loaf, I ordered a container of the psyllium husk powder on the cheap from Amazon (gotta love Amazon Prime). Then, I was finally ready to dig in.
For all my fears about messing up this bread, it’s pretty goof-proof. Here’s a sparknotes version of the recipe:
- Acquire a few cups of your favorite nut/seed combinations.
- Throw them in a bowl with some other ingredients that most healthy foodies have in their pantry, like coconut flour, oats, and chia seeds.
- Mix in some liquid and spices. Walk away from it for a few hours, then throw in the oven, and call it a day.
That’s right – no kneading, no resting the dough, nothing scary. In fact, this would be a really fun recipe to make with kids; all you have to do is measure and mix, and they would think it was cool to see how much liquid can be rapidly absorbed by the psyllium husk powder and coconut flour.
Moving on to this wonder bread’s taste: it’s a bit unlike anything I’ve had before – in a very good way! It’s dense and nutty, with pockets of intact nuts and seeds. There’s plenty of moisture in the bread, so it doesn’t taste dry at all. The slightly nutty flavor pairs really well jam – I tested out some blueberry jam from the farmers’ market on my first slice. Other great ways to have this are with ricotta, fruit and honey (one of my favorite ways to have toast), mashed avocado with lime and salt (my other favorite way to have toast), or a savory onion marmalade with goat cheese. The world is your oyster! You can also cut the bread into cubes and broil them to use as salad croutons.
I credit this bread – and the nutrients a single slice packs – with powering me through a 10.5-hour-drive from D.C. to Nashville, by myself, in one day. A few slices of this, plus some fruit (and some coffee) energized me throughout the drive. A single slice of the bread is incredibly filling in the best possible way, and sticks with you for hours. It’s great as a light meal or hearty snack for any day when you’re pressed for time.
- 1 cup raw sunflower seeds
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 2 tbsps chia seeds
- ½ cup ground flax seeds
- 1 cup rolled oats (gluten free if necessary)
- ½ cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 3 tbsps psyllium husk powder
- 1½ tablespoons sesame seeds
- ¼ cup coconut flour
- 1 tsp salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tbsps coconut oil, melted
- 1½ tablespoons maple syrup
- 3 cups water (start with 2½, adding more as needed)
- In a food processor, grind the sunflower seeds, almonds, and chia seeds. Pulse until they form a fine powder, then transfer to a large bowl. Add the flax seeds, oats, pumpkin seeds, psyllium husk powder, sesame seeds, coconut flour, salt and pepper.
- In a small bowl, stir together the coconut oil, maple syrup, and water until combined.
- Stir together the wet and dry ingredients into the large bowl. The wet ingredients will be rapidly absorbed into the dry ingredients. When the mixture is totally combined, the result will be a very thick, firm dough. Pour into a 9x5 inch bread pan (lined with parchment paper and lightly sprayed with oil). Spread the dough evenly and firmly press down. Let the dough sit at room temperature for about 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the loaf for about 70 minutes. Remove from the oven, and gently remove the loaf from the pan by lifting it up by the parchment paper. Place the loaf on a baking sheet and bake for 60 minutes. When the loaf is golden with a firm crust, remove from the oven and let cool before serving.
- Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator - it'll keep for about 10 days. Alternatively, it can be frozen and thawed.
- Calories - 216. Fat - 16g (Saturated Fat - 4g; Monounsaturated Fat - 2g; Polyunsaturated Fat - 4g). Carbs - 13g (Dietary Fiber - 7g; Sugar - 3g). Protein - 8g.