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German Bread Mix - How to Make Delicious Whole Wheat German Bread at Home

Updated on January 12, 2011

Whole Grain Bread in Germany

When I think of Germany, my mouth starts to water- not for the beer or sausage or chocolate, but for the bread- that dense, whole-grain German bread that's as thick and heavy as a brick and so satisfying, I hardly eat anything else while in the country.

One of the most tragic things about leaving Germany is that one must also leave the bread- it's very difficult to come across in the States.  In an effort to take a bit of that lovely food with me, I took some German bread mixes back with me, and tried them out in my kitchen below.  

I've translated the baking instructions on the packages of these bread mixes- along with ingredients and nutritional information, and shared them below.  I hope I can encourage you to bring back some German bread mixes next time you visit Germany!  They're not perfect, but they work in a pinch :)

Mmm! Dense!
Mmm! Dense!

Vollkornbrot, Aktivbrot, & Vitalbrot

These are some of the bread mixes I found most frequently in German grocery stores while in Germany, hence I brought a couple of packages home.  

More or less, these are simple bread mixes that only require the addition of water.  Once the breads have been kneaded and let to rise properly, they can be turned into a pan and baked.

Of course, I did not realize this when I purchased the mixes.  I had to type the information on the packages into Google Translate before I got even a hazy idea of what I was supposed to do.  Of course, I'll share my findings with you below, so all you have to do is bring these mixes home with you and have a ball!

Translated Nutritional Information

Active Bread: Translated Nutritional Information:

Per 100g of the baking mix

  • Calories: 334
  • Protein: 13.8g
  • carbohydrates: 56.6
  • Sugar: 5.0
  • Fat: 5.4
  • Saturated fat (?) 1.0
  • Dietary fiber: 6.9
  • Sodium: 0.9


Vital Bread: Translated Nutritional Information:

Per 100g of the baking mix

  • Calories: 355
  • Protein: 13.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 54.5
  • Sugar: 0.5
  • Fat: 8.9
  • Saturated Fat (?) 1.1
  • Dietary fiber: 6.7
  • Sodium: 0.9

Before rising...
Before rising...
... after rising!!
... after rising!!

How to Prepare Aktivbrot & Vitalbrot

What I did to make these:

  1. Heat 11.2 ounces of water until lukewarm
  2. Mix the contents of the pack with the water (I did this in my KitchenAid mixer with a dough hook)
  3. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let sit in a warm spot for 30 minutes until it has risen
  4. Knead the dough a bit, then put into a greased loaf pan
  5. Cover the pan and let it rest again for 40 minutes in a warm place
  6. At this point, the directions allude to coating the surface of the dough with water and cutting it lengthwise. I didn’t do this, having absolutely no idea what was going on, but go for it!
  7. Bake for 45-50 minutes in an oven of 425 degrees Fahrenheit (or somewhere between 400 and 450)

Instructions, as translated courtesy of Google Translate:

  • Ingredients: 500g baking mix
  • 330 ml water (lukewarm, about 25-40 C) (that’s about 11.2 ounces of water)
  • 1st The mixture back and give the water bowl in one. With a step-handruhgerat (kneading) to max price about 5 minutes to a homogeneous soft, knead dough. The dough with a towel for about 30 minutes abdeken let rest in a warm place until the volume has significantly enlarged into.
  • 2nd Subsequently the dough, knead briefly, in a greased loaf pan (about a 25 cm) and paint the surface smooth. Once more minutes covered in a warm place about 40 leave to rest.
  • 3rd The surface of the dough coat it with water, cut lengthwise and the lower rail of the vorgenheizten oven. After 10 minutes the heat zuruckehmen accordingly.
Cooking time
  • e-herd: about 45-50 minutes from 230 C to 200 C (I think e-herd means electric stove...)
  • hot air stove 45-50 minutes at 200 C 180c
  • gas stove: 45-50 minutes of step 5 to level 4

Translated Nutritional Information

Ingredients, as translated courtesy of Google Translate:

  • weizenvolkornmehl 72%
  • rye flour: 18%
  • rye sourdough, dried, wheat gluten, salt, dried yeast (1.8%), flour treatment agent ascorbic acid


Nutritional Information:
Rye Bread 100g discs (slices?) (2-3) contains

  • calorific value: 190 kcal
  • Protein: 8.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 37g
  • Fat: 1.2g

Baking tip: Make sure you mix the dough well - it'll come out smoother the more you mix it- I learned this the hard way!   Guess that's what I get for being so darned impatient @_@
Baking tip: Make sure you mix the dough well - it'll come out smoother the more you mix it- I learned this the hard way! Guess that's what I get for being so darned impatient @_@
The dough doesn't rise very much the last time around, but this could be because of the climate where I am... or because I waited for AGES before actually using the mixes @_@
The dough doesn't rise very much the last time around, but this could be because of the climate where I am... or because I waited for AGES before actually using the mixes @_@

How to Prepare Kathi Vollkornbrot

Instructions as I personally interpreted them:

  1. Heat 12.7 ounces of water until lukewarm
  2. Mix with the contents of your package (I had my KitchenAid do this for me - the dough hook had at the mixture for about four minutes)
  3. Cover the dough with a damp towel and let sit in a warm spot for 30 minutes until it has risen
  4. Knead the dough a bit, then put into a greased loaf pan
  5. Cover the pan and let it rest again for approximately 50 minutes in a warm place until the dough has risen again
  6. Brush the surface of the loaf with water and cut lengthwise with a knife
  7. Bake for 55 minutes at 410 degrees Fahrenheit


Translated German Instructions:

give back mixing bowl in one, 375 ml of lukewarm water and add to the ruhrgerat (knerthaken) verruhren short, flat stage to High about 4 minutes to process a smooth dough. the covered dough can go 30 minutes, ann on floured dough strand into a flat shape in a greased loaf pan (25 cm) lay. Once again, covered about 50 minutes can go in a warm place until the dough has enlarged into deuthlich. Brush surface with a little water and cut as desired with a sharp knife lengthwise. Aud the lower herdschiene bake.
The back mixing process Solte biem room temperature have.

Bread machine instructions (?)
Pack mixture and 375ml cold water enter into the machines and in the normal program bake.
Please pay attention to the instructions of the gerateherstellers to sequence the ingredients and the choice of back program

Baking instructions:
electric / gas stove: 210 C (preheated)
Cooking time: 55 minutes

The finished product... kinda looks like a brick! AND IS TASTY!!
The finished product... kinda looks like a brick! AND IS TASTY!!

Nutritional Information

Aktivbrot: Original Nutritional Information:
nahrwelte pro 100g
brennwert: 334 kcal
eiweib: 13.8g
kohlenhydrate: 56.6
davon zucker: 5.0
fett: 5.4
fettsauren: 1.0
ballaststoffe: 6.9
natrium: 0.9

Vitalbrot: Original Nutritional Information:
backmischung 100g
brennwert: 355 kcal
eiweib: 13.5 h
kohlenhydrate: 54.5
davon zucker :0.5
fett: 8.9
fettsauren = 1.1
ballaststoffe: 6.7
natrium: 0.9

The Original German Instructions & Nutritional Information for Aktivbrot and Vitalbrot

Aktivbrot and Vitalbrot

Original German Instructions:

backanleitung fur den ofen
zutaten: 500g backmischung
303lm wasser (lauwarm, ca. 25-40 C)

1. Die backmischung und das wasser in eine schussel geben. Mit einem handruhgerat (knethaken) auf hochster stufe ca. 5 minuten zu einem homogenen, weichen teig kneten. Den teig mit einem handtuch abdeken und ca. 30 minuten an einem warmen ort ruhen lassen, bis sich das volumen deutlich vergrobert hat.

2. Anschliebend den teig nur kurz durchkneten, in eine gefette kastenform (ca 25 cm) geben und die oberflache glatt streichen. Nochmals abgedeckt an einem warmen Ort ca. 40 minuten ruhen lassen.

3. Die oberflache des teiges mit wasser einstreichen, langs einschneiden und auf die untere schiene des vorgenheizten backofens schieben. Nach 10 minuten die hitze entsprechend zuruckehmen.

Backzeit

e-herd: ca. 45-50 minuten von 230 C auf 200 C
heibluft herd ca. 45-50 minuten von 200 C auf 180c
gasherd: 45-50 minuten von stufe 5 auf stufe 4

Mmm! Snack time!
Mmm! Snack time!

Original German Nutritional Values & Ingredients:

Nutrition

  • 100g Volkornbrot: (2-3 scheiben) enthalten
  • brennwert: 190 kcal
  • Eiweib: 8.1g
  • kohlenhydrate: 37g
  • fett: 1.2g

Ingredients:

  • weizenvolkornmehl 72%
  • roggenvollkornmehl: 18%
  • roggensauerteig, getrocknet, weizenkleber, speisesalz, trockenbackhefe (1.8%), mehlbehandlungsmittel ascorbinsaure

Original German Instructions for Kathi Vollkornbrot

Kathi Vollkorn Brot

Original German Instructions:

  1. backmischung in eine schussel geben, 375 ml lauwarmes wasser zugeben und mit dem ruhrgerat (knerthaken) kurz verruhren, dann auf hochester schalstufe ca. 4 minuten zu einem glatten teig verarbeiten. den teig abgedeckt 30 minuten gehen lassen, ann auf bemehlter flache zu einem teigstrang formen und in eine gefettete kastenform (25 cm) legen. Erneut abgedeckt ca. 50 minuten an einem warmen ort gehen lassen, bis sich der teig deuthlich vergrobert hat. Oberflache mit etwas wasser bestreichen und nach belieben mit einem scharfen messer langs einschneiden. Aud der unteren herdschiene backen.
  2. die backmischung solte biem verarbeiten zimmertemperatur haben.
  3. packmischung und 375ml kaltes wasser in den automaten geben und im normal-programm backen.
  4. Bitte beachten sie auch die hinweise des gerateherstellers zur reihenfolge der zutaten und zur wahl des backprogramms
  5. elektroherd / gasherd: 210 C (vorgeheizt)
  6. Backzeit: ca. 55 minuten



Mmm! Packed with healthy ingredients!
Mmm! Packed with healthy ingredients!

Can't go to Germany? You can still get German bread mixes online XD

Comments

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    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 

      6 years ago from Germany

      Hi Simone! I know how you felt when you left Germany and realized you can´t get the rye bread in your nearby bakeries. My husband and I always send German bread mixtures ready to bake, to the Philippines through Balikbayan boxes by ship, 2 months before we fly to the Philippines. We bake the mixture in a bread making machine a few hours before we eat them. (Water is the only ingredient we add to the mixture). That is, when we crave for a healthy delicious dark bread. I only need 1 slice and I´m full. There´s no such bread such as German rye bread.

    • GoodLady profile image

      Penelope Hart 

      6 years ago from Rome, Italy

      Hope to find the bread mixes at Lidl which is the only store in our part of Tuscany that MIGHT have them...then no one will stop me from making this bread. Looks amazing.

      Thanks so much. My b&b guests will love it too, warm out of the oven.

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Me too!!! I ate all my supplies... waaah T_T

    • howcurecancer profile image

      Elena@LessIsHealthy 

      7 years ago

      I am craving for German bread.

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks, toknowinfo! I hope you enjoy it! German bread is soo good @__@

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 

      7 years ago

      Sounds and looks delish. I will have to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing. Rated up and useful.

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Long live brick bread!! And thank goodness for Google translations :D

    • frogyfish profile image

      frogyfish 

      7 years ago from Central United States of America

      OK brick bread! I'm mostly German but the untranslated words didn't mean a thing. :-) Your first picture made me so hungry! Thanks for sharing and putting up links to the buying mixes.

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Hehee- I was crazy about those bread bricks!! The fresh stuff sure is amazing though. Ooooh!!! NOW I REALLY WANT TO GO BACK TO GERMANY T_____T

    • livelonger profile image

      Jason Menayan 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      WOW! This is an amazing Hub and looks like amazingly delicious bread. I don't like the soggy version of this bread that you buy in plastic bags (the brick-like kind) but love the fresh stuff - thank you!

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Theoretically, yes! Though I think a lot of it comes down to the great flours used- ones we don't typically have lying around in stores, where the only whole wheat options we typically have are generic. The key, I think, is all the great rye flours, seeds, etc... that are harder to get!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 

      7 years ago from Washington

      I shall have to troll through my recipes and see if I can come up with some good old German breads. Bob is German and my grandfather was German as well - I should be able to come up with something you'd think!

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Yesh, it's great with soup, Patsybell!

      And stugod- hahaa, store-bought bagged breads are slipping off my shopping lists too @_@ especially since I'm finding so many nice bread recipes and realizing it's not so tough! I've been meaning to try my hand at Irish soda bread lately. You've inspired me to go for it!

    • stugod profile image

      Stuart Goddard 

      7 years ago from Bradford

      I recently discovered an Irish soda bread with a taste that is pure delight. I do not know what they make it from but the taste takes me back to my youth.

      The modern stuff churned out for the masses is off my shopping list from now on.

    • Patsybell profile image

      Patsy Bell Hobson 

      7 years ago from zone 6a, SEMO

      Sounnds like a good hardy bread perfect with soup this winter.

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Indeed they are! I'm just desperate to replicate some of the delicious German breads I've sampled... I wish we had them in the States!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 

      7 years ago from Washington

      I've never heard of that before - will have to check it out. Bricks are good sometimes!

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