Old-Fashioned Brown Bread Recipe
Old-Fashioned Brown Bread Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Old-Fashioned Brown Bread Recipe

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This chewy, old-fashioned bread boasts a slightly sweet flavor that will transport you back to the old days. —Patricia Donnelly, Kings Landing, New Brunswick
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 35 min. + cooling
MAKES:32 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 35 min. + cooling
MAKES: 32 servings


  • 2-1/3 cups boiling water
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 5-1/2 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Nutritional Facts

1 slice: 124 calories, 3g fat (2g saturated fat), 8mg cholesterol, 170mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 3g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1-1/2 starch.


  1. In a large bowl, pour boiling water over oats. Stir in butter and molasses. Let stand until mixture cools to 120°-130°, stirring occasionally.
  2. In another bowl, combine 3-1/2 cups flour, yeast and salt. Beat in oat mixture until blended. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
  3. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  4. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Shape into loaves. Place in two greased 9x5-in. loaf pans. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°. Bake 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (16 slices each).
Originally published as Old-Fashioned Brown Bread in Taste of Home October/November 2009, p19

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ebramkamp User ID: 702841 251970
Reviewed Jul. 28, 2016

"One of my favorite breads. The molasses add just the right amount of sweetness plus a beautiful color."

angela32 User ID: 3084463 250218
Reviewed Jul. 8, 2016

"Love this bread! The molasses gives it a great flavor....will make again!"

tamarapearson User ID: 3272516 242965
Reviewed Jan. 31, 2016

"This bread is incredibly moist with the perfect subtle sweetness. Love!"

rwippel User ID: 4262008 226836
Reviewed May. 24, 2015

"This bread was very good with a subtle sweetness. However, I feel like all the dough would have fit into a 2 quart round dish. And I could have baked it all together."

MY REVIEW User ID: 5947940 224378
Reviewed Apr. 7, 2015

"This bread was pretty good, but I would make a few changes in the recipe. I would only use 2 cups water. It required about 7 1/2 cups of flour and then it was still very sticky. I would increase the molasses to 1/2 cup. My bread wasn't nearly as dark as in the photo. I would decrease yeast to 4 tsp. mine raised in 40 mins it was ready to run over the top of the pan. I also made rolls instead of bread. They were extremely light and fluffy. They went over very well with my guests. Will definitely make again."

rosie1963 User ID: 5744836 115678
Reviewed Apr. 23, 2013

"This bread turns out perfect every time I make it. It is amazing and I have made and recommended it several times to friends and family. i add a scant 1/2 c cracked wheat to the oatmeal and boiling water. It is so delicious! You cannot eat just one piece!"

thebabyjane User ID: 2227930 182532
Reviewed Apr. 21, 2013

"I can't find my mother's brown bread recipe, but this come amazingly close and was pretty easy to make. I tried another brown bread recipe on another site that wouldn't even rise.... might have been my fault. I made this and shared with a friend and her husband and it was described as delicious."

kelticbaker User ID: 6255553 105843
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2011

"Having grown up not too far from Kings Landing, I was eager to try this bread recipe. Most family recipes made multiple loaves...which didn't suit our needs. This was FABULOUS, I would absolutely make it again and it would fit a novice baker as well as more advanced. So easy in fact I could make this weekly and it not be a chore! The flavour was unbelieveable and it met all expectations (based on a tough crowd of bread and bean eaters!) 5 stars all the way!"

Reesa6 User ID: 3925547 105837
Reviewed Sep. 8, 2011

"Wonderful loaves. Slightly sweet, soft, lasted a while.

I had to add maybe another cup of flour for the kneading process during the first rise and the shaping.
It smelled wonderful while baking, cooled well. I'm about to make it a second time, right now!"

goodcookin1234 User ID: 1866415 165286
Reviewed Feb. 15, 2011

"I made homemade bread for the first time a couple weeks ago, and this was the recipe I choose, it is wonderful, very easy to follow the recipe, and this past week I changed up the recipe and cut back on the amount of molasses, and used honey to make the 1/3 cup, and added 1 cup of raisins. It turned out so good. I am going to bake more this week, I just love this bread with Cheese Whiz on it."

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