Gluten-Free Pumpernickel Beer Bread


Photo of pumpernickel beer bread by Jeff Rasmussen

This recipe turns everything about gluten-free bread on its head—in the best possible way. The ingredients are crazy. The dough is wet. The loaf is huge and can be sliced thin. The bread is soft and pliable and stays that way for days. The eggs can be replaced in this recipe; see instructions below.

2 large eggs + 2 egg whites
3 tablespoons molasses, dark agave nectar or pure
maple syrup
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 cups Gluten Free & More high-protein flour blend
1 cup gluten-free buckwheat flour
cup milk powder of choice
3 tablespoons granulated sugar or coconut sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder (not “Dutch”)
1 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon caraway seeds, optional
1 teaspoon orange zest, optional
2 teaspoons (1 packet) rapid rise yeast
1 cups dark gluten-free beer

1. Generously grease one 9x5-inch loaf pan. Bring all wet ingredients, including eggs, to room temperature.

2. Mix eggs, molasses, oil and cider vinegar in a large mixing bowl.

3. Combine flour blend, buckwheat flour, milk powder, sugar, cocoa, salt, baking soda, caraway seeds (if using), orange zest (if using) and yeast in a separate bowl and whisk well.

4. Slowly stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients, adding gluten-free beer last while mixing. Continue to mix on medium speed until batter is smooth, about 3 to 5 minutes. Batter will be very wet, not like typical bread dough.

5.Pour batter into prepared pan. (Do not fill more than ⅔ full.) Cover with oiled parchment paper and let rise 45 minutes in a warm place. Watch to be sure loaf does not rise above the top of the pan.

6. Preheat oven to 350F.

7. Place loaf in preheated oven and bake 35 to 40 minutes. Bread is done when the internal temperature is 205F and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

8. Let loaf cool 5 to 10 minutes in the pan before removing to finish cooling on a wire rack. Slice when cooled. Store fully cooled loaf in a zip-top bag at room temperature.

Loaf yields 14 slices. Each slice contains 188 calories, 5g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 32mg cholesterol, 326mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 5g sugars, 4g protein, 18 Est GL.

*For Egg-Free Pumpernickel Beer Bread, combine 2 tablespoons flax meal with 6 tablespoons hot unsweetened applesauce. Mix well and let cool. Combine 1 tablespoon Ener-G egg replacer ( with 4 tablespoons warm water to make a paste. Combine with flax mixture and add to wet ingredients in Step 2 to replace the eggs.

Recipe by cooking instructor Jules E. Dowler Shepard (, author of Free for All Cooking (Da Capo Press).

Bread machine photo by joseelias/123rf

Bread Machine Method for Pumpernickel Beer Bread

1. Bring all wet ingredients to room temperature.

2. Whisk wet ingredients together and pour into the bread pan.

3. Whisk together dry ingredients (except yeast) in a separate bowl and pour on top of the wet ingredients in the pan.

4. Make a well in the center with your finger and pour in the yeast.

5. Set bread machine to gluten-free bread setting. If your machine doesn’t have a gluten-free setting, use “Dough” setting or a setting for mixing and rising only. Do not set for second rise or let the machine “punch down” the dough.

6. After rising, set machine to “Bake” for 60 minutes.

7. Remove the loaf only when the bread has reached an internal temperature of 205F. If necessary, add bake time to the bread machine. Alternatively, finish baking the loaf in a 350F preheated oven until done.

8. Leave bread in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes before inverting gently to remove. Finish cooling on a wire rack and slice when cooled.

9. Keep fully cooled loaf in a zip-top bag at room temperature.

This recipe for Pumpernickel Beer Bread makes a very large loaf. Set your bread machine to the 3-pound loaf setting. If your machine doesn’t have this setting, use the 2-pound loaf setting—but check to make sure the bread is fully cooked before removing it from the machine. At the 2-pound setting, the loaf may sink a bit in the middle due to its volume but when fully cooked, its crumb and texture are still excellent.