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Homemade Bread Recipe – Low Carb & Keto Friendly

Over the last year, we’ve tried about a dozen different bread recipes and ready-made bread options that range from extremely low to moderately low carb. All are sugar free, most are grain free, and some are gluten free. We were on a quest to find something that made everyone in this little family happy.

Many folks have shared their successful experiments in creating really amazing breads, usually one kitchen guru building on another’s tasty creation, effectively evolving it into something new. And that’s what we’ve done here. We found a super simple keto bread recipe by Mad Creations that was inspired by recipes and experiments by Diedre, Keto Luna, and She Calls Me Hobbit. It was a great foundation to play with and shape into a texture and flavor profile we really love.

Jump to Recipe | Jump to Recipe Notes | Jump to Alt Ingredients

Why try all the bread??

Well, to be honest, my husband is picky about his bread and until recently, we hadn’t found one that met his criteria. He kinda liked the buttery, almond flour breads I made at the start of this lifestyle change, but they weren’t really “bread” in his opinion. He believes wholeheartedly that bread is pillowy soft, fluffy, stretchy, bouncy, toastable, with a yeasty smell/flavor; bread that can be eaten alone, without anything added on top.

Basically, traditional bread but without carbs.

The search began…

Nature’s Own makes a sugar free bread readily available in most stores that comes very close to the hub’s idea of what bread should be and he’s pretty content with it, but the carb count is pretty high per slice when you want more than one and the ingredients aren’t super agreeable for me personally. Sola Bread comes in second for store bought bread with fewer carbs per slice, but the taste and texture aren’t quite right.

Keto Luna has fine tuned keto flour ratios in her bread recipes to perfection, resulting in an incredible traditional bread doppleganger – but a huge portion of the ingredients is casein powder, which I’m allergic to. We tried Diedre’s bread recipe too – the texture was so incredibly bready but the flavor was off. So close, but none of these options were quite right for my family. Nor did they meet the hub’s hefty bread standards. This meant we were just gunna hafta find a way to make it ourselves.

So, after countless recipe attempts, failures, near-successes, and 1 broken food processor later… we offer up our own spin on a low carb (1.6g net carbs per slice!), gluten-based, yeast-risen, traditional-tasting, homemade bread with extremely low net carbs. We’ve made it 5 times so far with modest tweaks, consistent results, and it’s finally received the husband’s stamp of approval. Also, be sure to check out my notes below the recipe for tips and ideas on variations or substitutions.

Low Carb Bread Recipe

Tools

Note: Okay, so I don’t usually list tools, but some tools make your life easier. I’ve been making this with a stand mixer to knead the dough – but I’ve also used my hands for a hefty workout when we had no stand mixer. Also, some people have success using a decent food processor (carefully though, I broke mine attempting this method ’cause I didn’t know what I was doing).

  • Stand mixer with dough hook, food processor, or strong hands
  • Parchment Paper or Silicone Mats
  • Rolling Pin
  • 8 or 9 inch Loaf Pan
  • Breadmaker??? I’ve never used one before but I’ve heard good things, like how it both kneads the dough and bakes it for you. If you have one and give this a go, let me know how it turns out!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Warm Water (between 105 and 110°F)
  • 1 tbsp Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 tbsp Inulin Powder (or 2 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup, see notes)
  • 1 cup Vital Wheat Gluten
  • 1/3 cup Oat Fiber
  • 1/3 cup Brown or Golden Flaxseed Meal (see notes)
  • 1/3 cup Fine Blanched Almond Flour
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp Fine Pink Salt or Fine Sea Salt (to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp Xanthum Gum (optional)
  • 1 tbsp Powdered Erythritol or equivalent in your preferred sweetener (this doesn’t make the bread super sweet IMO but rather balances the flavor of the flours and salt)
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder (optional)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4-6 tbsp Unsalted Butter (softened, we use 6 but can use less)

Directions

Note: I am wordy, can’t emphasize this enough. So the gist is this:
– activate the yeast
– mix the dry ingredients in one bowl
– mix the wet ingredients in another bowl
– combine the activated yeast, wet, and dry ingredients
– knead for 5-8 minutes
– proof the dough for 1 hour
– bake for 45 minutes in a 335° f oven

Ta da! But it’s still highly recommended to read the more detailed instructions and recipe notes below.

1. In a small bowl, combine warm water, yeast, and inulin. Give it a quick stir, cover with a cloth or cling film and set aside in a warm/humid area for about 5-7 minutes, or until frothy (e.g. oven with the light on, stove top while the oven preheats, or a microwave). If it doesn’t get frothy on top, you might need to try again with fresh yeast and double check your water’s temp.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients: Vital Wheat Gluten, Oat Fiber, Golden Flaxseed, Almond Flour, Salt, Xanthum Gum, and Garlic Powder (or any other seasonings you’d like to add).

3. Once the yeast mix looks frothy, combine the rest of the wet ingredients in the small bowl: Eggs and Butter.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and give it all a quick stir with a fork or hard spatula until it starts to look like a lumpy, sticky dough.

5. Make sure your dough hook is attached to your stand mixer and set it to knead your dough in the big bowl on a low-medium setting for about 5-8 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when it starts to turn into a giant ball and looks stretchy rather than lumpy.

Tip: Alternatively, you can pour the lumpy dough into a food processor and carefully pulse (and scrape the edges as needed) for about 5-8 minutes, until the dough starts to ball and twine around the center. You can also go old school and knead the dough by hand until it barely sticks to your hands anymore and stretches an inch or two without breaking.

6. Optional: Place the kneaded dough between two sheets of parchment paper or silicone mats and roll it out to a flatish rectangle where the shorter side is about the width of your loaf pan (so it fits!). This doesn’t have to be perfect. From the short side of the rectangle, start rolling the dough inward until it makes a log (it’s kinda like rolling a log for pinwheels or cinnamon rolls).

7. Place the dough into a greased loaf pan, seam side down.

8. Cover the dough with a cloth and place in a humid area to proof and rise for 1 hour. We like to preheat our oven and leave the dough on the stovetop near the oven’s vent. You could also place it in a NON-preheating oven, with the oven light on, or a microwave.

Tip: For a darker, shinier crust you can brush the dough with an egg wash or butter before baking. Rather than baking with a wash, I like to brush my fully baked bread with melted butter when it’s hot out of the oven then sprinkle it with some sea salt. For a harder, crispier crust you might try adding a pan full of ice cubes or cold water on the bottom rack to create steam; however, I’m not sure how well this method works with our low carb flour combo.

9. Preheat oven to 335° f and bake for 40 minutes on the middle rack. Stick a long toothpick/skewer through the side, toward the middle and if it doesn’t come out clean, bake for another 5 minutes. Note: Bake times will vary if you choose to do buns or other, smaller/flatter shapes – for these, check at 20 minutes and add time as needed.

10. Carefully remove from the loaf pan and let it cool on a rack for about 1 hour before slicing. Super warm bread fresh out of the oven is delicious to eat, but difficult to cut evenly.

11. Slice the bread with a large, sharp knife and store in a cool, dry place in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can also store slices in the freezer for several weeks.

Makes 15 thick slices | Serving: 1 slice | Net Carbs: 1.6g | Calories: 109
Disclaimer: Info provided here by entering the ingredients used into Carb Manager. These numbers can change based on the ingredients/brands/etc. you choose to use.

Recipe Notes

What else can we make with this dough?

So, so, sooo much. Over the last month we’ve successfully made cinnamon rolls, pull apart dinner rolls, and thick crust pizza. If you omit the yeast, it might also make a decent pasta! Whatever bready thing you’re craving, this might be a good base to start with.

About that yeast

The water should be warm to the touch but not boiling – like a cup of coffee that’s been cooling down for 15 mins. The warmest my tap water gets is about 110 so I no longer worry that hot water straight from my tap may kill my yeast.

Yes, it’s already activated yeast and you might be able to skip the warm water bath step with success and just toss everything in the mixer as-is, but low carb dough can use all the help it can get. A nice bath doesn’t hurt…

The yeast will feed on whatever sugar you use to emit a gas that gives your dough rise and will leave behind trace amounts to no carbs. If you don’t want to risk it with real sugar and you have no issues with nightshades, just use inulin – it’s pure fiber with zero net carbs and is just as effective.

Salt can kill yeast, that’s why we’re combining the yeast mixture with the eggs and butter before adding them to the dry ingredients. This creates some separation between the two ingredients so your bread should have a really nice rise.

What the heck is “Oat Fiber”??

Oat fiber, not to be confused with oat flour, is made from the outer hull of oat kernels and contains zero net carbs, as it’s pure fiber – just like inulin. Oat fiber gives low carb bread that familiar grain consistency that you associate with fine wheat flours.

Overseas, you’ll find many low carb recipes use potato fiber rather than oat fiber. Unfortunately, potato fiber is scarce in the Americas, so folks started experimenting with oat fiber as a viable alternative and have had great success. However, some people can be very sensitive to different types of fibers. I encourage everyone to give it a try if they’ve never used it before, but do so cautiously and make note of any adverse reactions.

Which Flax is best?

Golden Flax has slightly healthier fats, brown flax has slightly more antioxidants. They’re both pretty healthy all around and the difference seems to be incredibly small, so it’s really up to you. You can use brown or golden flaxseed interchangeably here, *BUT* if you choose to use one that’s been very finely ground into a powder, the carb count per slice will go up slightly (expect about 1.9-2g net carbs per slice instead of 1.6g). You can also try to use slightly less of the fine powdered version so it balances out a bit better carb-wise.

And what about that gluten?

Vital Wheat Gluten or Gluten Flour is the main protein derived from wheat flour. Bakers have been using it for ages to make carby breads even breadier. It’s only protein though and as such, very low in carbs. Anyone with a serious gluten sensitivity or celiac disease should look into other bread options as this recipe doesn’t have a substitution for the gluten flour. Click here to check out one of my earlier posts about bread for some ideas that might better suit your bready needs.

Speaking of substitutions…

The most important ingredients for this recipe are vital wheat gluten, yeast, and oat fiber. I don’t recommend subbing those 3 out, but please feel free to experiment and tweak until you find something that works for you – this is a constantly evolving recipe strewn across many different kitchens. As for the other ingredients:

  • Almond flour can be swapped for more flaxseed meal – more flaxseed means you’ll have an “earthier, rye style” bread and it can also increase the natural, albeit subtle sour/vinegar taste. And remember – flaxseed has way more fiber than almond flour. One of the reasons we used almond flour in this recipe was to reduce the fiber.
  • Flaxseed meal can be swapped for more almond flour – the crumb might be a tad chewier but we barely noticed.
  • Xanthum gum can be swapped out for guar gum, though neither gum is necessary. Not all gums are created equal – Xanthum is usually derived from corn, which can be very inflammatory for people sensitive to the grain.
  • Eggs – I haven’t tried it yet, but I think 2 flaxseed “eggs” might work. The eggs help with moisture and structure, so I’d expect a different overall texture and taste.
  • Butter – I haven’t tried it yet either, but likely any oil that solidifies at room temp, like coconut oil or ghee, would work as tasty substitutions here. You can also use less butter if you’d like, but healthy fats makes everything taste better.

Alternate Recipe Ingredients

Don’t like Almond Flour? Don’t mind slightly more fiber? Try these ingredients instead! Same directions as above, just slightly different ratios for a less chewy, almond-free bread. The texture is a bit softer, especially if you use the full amount of butter.

Ingredients

  • 1.25 cup Warm Water (between 105 and 110°F)
  • 1 tbsp Active Dry Yeast
  • 1 tbsp Inulin Powder (or 2 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup, see notes)
  • 1 cup Vital Wheat Gluten
  • 1/2 cup Oat Fiber
  • 1/2 cup Brown or Golden Flaxseed Meal (see notes)
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp Fine Pink Salt or Fine Sea Salt (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp Powdered Erythritol or equivalent in your preferred sweetener (this doesn’t make the bread super sweet IMO but rather balances the flavor of the flours and salt)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4-6 tbsp Unsalted Butter (softened, we use 6 but can use less)

Makes 15 thick slices | Serving: 1 slice | Net Carbs: 1.4g | Calories: 102
Disclaimer: Info provided here by entering the ingredients used into Carb Manager. These numbers can change based on the ingredients/brands/etc. you choose to use.

Jump to recipe directions →


And that is that. At some point, I’d love to find or create a gluten free recipe that works out as nicely as this one. Until then, we’ll keep playing with the ratios and ingredient list. Stay tuned for more variations!

1 Comment so far

  1. Pingback: Homemade Bread Recipe – Low Carb & Keto Friendly — Homemade Noms – All About Writing and more

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