If there is one thing that I’m addicted to, it’s bread. Who doesn’t love the smell of fresh baked bread! I don’t eat it on a daily basis, but when I do, I want to enjoy it. Luckily there are plenty other options to choose from. I’m not talking about overnight oats or diving into a smoothie bowl. But bread substitutes, they are delicious and often healthier than normal bread. A while ago I saw this post about ‘life changing bread’ from Sarah Britton. I thought why not try it, it’s gluten-free and wheat-free. It did not disappoint, so I made it a couple times. Over time the ratio was different depending on the ingredients I had in my kitchen. The recipe I’m going to share with you is the seed loaf version I liked the most. The main difference with the one from the blog post is that this loaf is nuttier and denser. Overall the loaf is just delicious, I can eat a slice plain. But combined with a spread, it’s hard to resist.

I’m actually not on any diet but I do want to eat healthier. I’d rather eat something else carby which I can enjoy more. Let’s say, a cookie or a doughnut. Bread is an example of a food item that is easy to replace. By making your own, you know exactly what goes into the recipe. This way it’s healthier than store-bought and it’s cheaper too!

Not only is this seed and nuts loaf easy to make, you can adjust it the way you like it. It’s either that or whatever is left in your pantry. Most of the ingredients I have in my kitchen anyway because I use them for different purposes. That’s why I always make sure that I have enough, especially for impulsive moments. I hope you like this recipe as much as I do. Enjoy baking!

Ingredients for making the ‘dough’

The first thing you do is gathering a big bowl, a scale, spatula and measuring tools. I always oil the pan right away. Start with measuring all your ingredients and take the bowl. Dump in the rolled oats, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, flax seeds, psyllium seed husk, chia seeds and the sea salt. Stir the ingredients just until it’s evenly mixed. This was fast and easy, right? The best part is that you hardly make any mess while prepping.

Dry ingredients

Next up, the wet stuff. I always mix the maple syrup and the olive oil with the water first. This way it’s easier to combine with the dry ingredients. Now pour the wet ingredients into the bowl and mix it all evenly in the big bowl, use a spatula. You can see the chia getting absorbed immediately. After stirring a couple times, scoop the mixture into the oiled loaf pan. It’s important to press ‘the dough’ with a spatula or may be with your hands. The whole content should stick together. Last but not least, don’t forget to smooth out the top! That’s all for now. Put the loaf pan in the fridge for at least 4 hours, up to a whole night.

Transferring the dough into loaf pan

This is what happens when you look away for one second

Smooth out the top with a spatula

Ready for the fridge. I like to make the dough in the evening. This way the dough will have enough time in the fridge to set. The next morning I will put the loaf in the oven and after baking, the loaf needs to cool completely first. Of course, I’d like to eat it for breakfast right away, but if it’s not completely cooled, it’s difficult to cut. Thankfully it’s worth the wait. Now I can look forward to eating the bread for lunch.

This is the loaf just before I’m going to pop it into the oven

Time to bake some bread! Preheat the oven to 400F/200C and place a rack in the middle. Leave it to bake for at least 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Fresh out of the oven, ready to cool

You know the bread is doing it’s thing when the kitchen starts to smell. When it’s time to take the loaf pan out of the oven, I always touch the top with my finger. If the top feels dry and rough, that means the bread is done! If it feels soft, you might want to leave it in the oven for another 5 minutes. Let it cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes.

Loaf on cooling rack

To prevent the bread from sogginess, try to take out the loaf (after 15 minutes) by using a thin knife to loosen the edges. When the loaf comes out of the pan, it needs two more hours to cool completely. This is faster than cooling it in the loaf pan. The bread will be firm and crunchy on every side.

Take a cerated knife to cut the bread into slices. The bread will be dense, you can eat it like that or toast it. Pay attention to the thickness.

Slice of bread and crackers

The loaf will be good for 3 days. Because it freezes good, I pre-slice the bread and put the slices in a resealable bag for the freezer. Whenever I want to eat it, I just defrost 1 or 2 slices and the bag goes back into the freezer. You can defrost it in the microwave for 30 sec on both sides or take it out of the freezer 10 minutes before consumption. The slice is tasty on it’s own but less heavy when toasted. I aways toast mine because I love the crunch and the nutty aroma from the seeds and nuts. For me, 2 slices are enough.

Toasted slices

The seed loaf is even more versatile than you might think. If you have good knife skills you can slice it really thin for about 0,5 cm. If you toast it, you’ll have the tastiest crunchy crackers. Just like the bread slice, you can eat the crackers on their own too. I love snacking on these. Below you see my top 5 spread combinations.

My favorite spread combinations

  • smashed avocado with cherry tomatoes
  • hummus with cucumber
  • goat cheese with fresh figs
  • slice of old cheese
  • almond butter

My last suggestion is making croutons. Because the bread is extra tasty when toasted, I thought why not try making croutons? This way it’s flavorful, nutritious, guilt-free and filling too! Normally croutons are soaked in oil and very salty. But they do give a great bite to salads and soups. These ‘croutons’ are guilt-free, I don’t use any fats to toast them. I have to admit that it will take a bit more time but it’s worth it. You’ll have to flip it carefully and more often than a slice of ‘bread’ or ‘crackers’.

Let me know how your seed and nuts loaf turns out. I’m curious to know if you like it. Enjoy your healthy tasty bread and/or crackers!

X Merula