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Old-Fashioned Brown Bread Recipe

Old-Fashioned Brown Bread Recipe

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 YIELD: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


  • 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).

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.

Reviews for Old-Fashioned Brown Bread

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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."

Loiscooks User ID: 3656565 115672
Reviewed Feb. 9, 2011

"I halved this to make one loaf, and it turned out very good. When we toasted it, it was somewhat crumbly, perhaps because I halved the recipe. It was still good though. I will make this again, and since we did like the bread, I'll make the 2 loaves instead of the half recipe."

MartinwoodForest User ID: 4909212 100006
Reviewed Jan. 15, 2011

"The process of starting yeast in some warm water before adding it to the mix (also called proofing) was for the purpose of determining if the yeast was still good. Today's yeast is so reliable that we don't need to do that any more...unless you've had it on your shelf after the expiration date has passed. :)"

time2cook User ID: 1877649 183808
Reviewed Jan. 5, 2011

"It was okay, but nothing spectacular. I prefer a sweeter bread, something more like the bread served at Outback or other restaurants."

ReldaJ User ID: 4232382 99997
Reviewed Oct. 24, 2010

"Sorry I was going to answer the question about the yeast. I just added it with the flour. That is also what my friend at work said she does."

ReldaJ User ID: 4232382 185869
Reviewed Oct. 24, 2010

"Wish there were more stars!! A friend brought this to work and I loved it. It was Firm and chewy. I did do it in my bread Machine and it worked out great. I made the mistake of using bread flour. It made it not as chewy but it was still great. I will make it with the right flour the next time. I started with 2 1/2 cups of flour and divided everything else in half. In with the flour I mixed 2 T. cracked wheat & sunflower seeds and 1 T. Sesame seeds. If you have a bread machine the you use you know what the dough should feel like to the touch after the first mix. So then add some flour or water depending on the day. I had to add a little more flour a few T. at a time. My son loved it and I will be making more. I think this will be I bread this winter with Lots of yummy soup."

shelleybodily User ID: 5100948 114529
Reviewed Oct. 17, 2010 Edited Feb. 28, 2017

"ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS! Has a great chewy sweet flavor! The only suggestion that I have is that you this recipe can easily make three regular loaves or two huge loaves. Next time I will portion the dough into three loaves!! Great with my just-made homemade raspberry jam!"

karenbc User ID: 1210810 183710
Reviewed Oct. 11, 2010

"it says to use active dry yeast but it doesn't say to raise the yeast before adding ?"

Marnelle User ID: 1257580 182528
Reviewed Oct. 7, 2010

"Loved this! I have already made it twice this week. :)"

MeMe9170 User ID: 4499968 183708
Reviewed Oct. 5, 2010

"This was my first attempt to make real homemade bread; what a wonderful experience. My children just loved didn't last long. Super easy; I followed directions as written and was delightfully satisfied with the results. I plan to bake some again tomorrow."

Marras User ID: 2984492 183707
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"I love this bread. I try to keep some in my freezer at all times."

menicki User ID: 87508 105788
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010 Edited Feb. 28, 2017

"this is really a good bread, and yes you do use 2 packs of dry yeast, I also add some raisins and a few nuts."

belljoy User ID: 3363004 169571
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010


mikesbestgirl User ID: 952444 182492
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"I haven't made this bread yet, but it sounds delicious. I am responding to the request by ASJ1 for an exact amount of flour. There is no exact amount. The amount of flour needed to form a soft dough will vary depending on many factors including the humidity on the day you make your bread. That's why they give you a range from 5 1/2 cups to 6 1/2 cups. Don't be afraid to try it; you'll get a feel for it. It doesn't have to be perfect to still turn out well. Making bread is so much fun. Good luck."

Montgrandma User ID: 4715369 114526
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"This has become our family's favorite bread. I also make and sell it at the local Farmer's Market and people come looking for it week after week."

Suedolittle User ID: 2218978 183671
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"I was wondering if anyone made this in a bread machine. I'm going to try it. I would have to cut the ingredients in half."

sugamoma User ID: 5444561 105786
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010 Edited Feb. 28, 2017

"This is almost identical to my grandmother's recipe. She was from Canada and the date on her recipe said 1938. Yummy bread."

ASJ1 User ID: 3729839 100723
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2010

"I have never made bread and would like to make this recipe. Is it 5-1/2 or 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour How much exactly please?"

tbasnett User ID: 237227 181508
Reviewed Dec. 4, 2009

"My families favorite bread. WE LOVE IT!"

rkennell User ID: 2940122 183603
Reviewed Dec. 1, 2009

"This bread is so delicious, esp. toasted! It seems the flavor develops a bit after it sets a day or two, which is unusual for bread. It is definitely a new staple in our family!"

hsmomma5 User ID: 4095346 125365
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2009

"I made this bread for the first time this afternoon. I have had varied success with homemade breads, but none that I ever felt turned out "just right". This one did. It looked perfect and tasted wonderful. And as far as homemade bread recipes go, it was easy!"

DarleneT User ID: 663582 125364
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2009

"This is a great bread. I made it with just a few changes. I used 3 1/2 c. of white flour & the balnce was whole wheat (for added nutrition) then I added rasins & raw sunflower seeds. OOOH my. So moist & nice. Reminds me of a bread that is available at a small fresh baked bread store, nearby for about $6 per loaf. I will definately bake this again & again. A keeper."

bookends98 User ID: 3099386 182491
Reviewed Oct. 4, 2009 Edited Feb. 28, 2017

"I've never actually made yeast bread before yesterday and I used this recipe. It called for it and I used it. I thought the bread turned out really well."

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