This homemade beer bread is ridiculously easy to make and absolutely delicious. Made with just a handful of ingredients, and no kneading or rising required!
Last week I posted a focaccia recipe, and you guys seemed to really dig it. But I did hear from a few people who wanted to join the baking party but couldn’t get ahold of any yeast.
So this week I’m back with a yeast-free bread. Oh, and great news: this stuff is way easier to make than yeast breads.
What is Beer Bread?
Never made beer bread before? Well, here’s the lowdown.
Beer bread is a quick bread made with, you guessed it, beer. Quick bread, in case you’re unfamiliar, is bread made without yeast. It’s quick, because there’s no rising required — just mix up some batter, pour it in a pan, and bake it!
Beer bread, like other quick breads, is leavened with baking powder and/or soda.
Most quick breads are on the sweet side though (think banana bread, zucchini bread, or cornbread), but beer bread is savory. It has less sweetener than your typical quick bread, and the beer adds a yeasty, slightly bitter, flavor.
Texture-wise, it’s somewhere between that of a sweet quick bread and yeast-bread. This bread is tender and just a bit crumbly.
Whole Wheat Beer Bread Ingredients
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Whole wheat pastry flour
- Baking powder
- Beer (preferably a mild variety, such as ale or pilsner)
- Maple syrup
- Olive oil
How to Make Beer Bread
Get ready for the easiest loaf of bread you ever baked.
Start by stirring your dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Now add each of your liquid ingredients, and stir everything together. You should end up with a thick batter (not quite a dough).
Transfer your batter to a well-oiled loaf pan, smooth out the top with a spoon, then drizzle some olive oil over the top of the loaf. Feel free to gently spread the oil around with your hands or a basting brush.
Bake your bread until the top of the loaf is golden brown.
How to Serve Beer Bread
For the most part you can serve beer bread just like you would serve yeast bread. Slather it with vegan butter, jam or peanut butter, pair it up with soup or salad, or make it into toast.
I generally suggest avoiding making this bread into sandwiches (unless you eat them with a fork!), because it’s quite a bit more delicate than yeast bread.
Beer Bread Tips & FAQ
- I hate the taste of beer. Will I hate beer bread too? Not necessarily! I’m not a fan of drinking beer either, but I love cooking with it. The flavor becomes much milder when the alcohol cooks off.
- Can I substitute all-purpose flour? I haven’t tried this recipe with all-purpose flour, but I don’t see why now?
- Can I substitute regular whole wheat flour? I’m not sure! Regular whole wheat flour can sometimes result in a dryer, chewier bread. If you’d like to give it a shot, I recommend using a blend of half whole wheat, half all-purpose flour.
- Can this bread be made gluten-free? Again, I’m not sure! I suspect that an all-purpose gluten-free blend like Bob’s Red Mill or King Arthur Flour’s might work, but I haven’t tried, so no guarantees.
- Storage and shelf life: This bread is best eaten the day it’s baked. But if you do have leftovers, store them in a sealed bag at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for 3 months. I usually use the leftover bread to make toast.
- Not all beer is vegan. Check with Barnivore to ensure that yours is!
Whole Wheat Olive Oil Beer Bread
- 3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 12 ounces beer (ale, lager, or pilsner recommended)
- 5 tablespoons olive oil (as needed), divided
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Generously coat the bottom of a 9-inch loaf pan with olive oil.
Stir the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large mixing bowl.
Add the beer, maple syrup, and 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Stir everything together just until fully mixed. The batter will be very thick.
Transfer the batter to the loaf pan. Smooth out the top with a spoon, then drizzle the top with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Spread the oil around with a spoon or your hands if needed.
Place the pan into the oven and bake the loaf until the top is set and lightly browned, 45 to 50 minutes.
Place the pan on a cooling rack and allow the bread to cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing.
Slice and serve.