I remember when my mom made the switch. Instead of buying sweet, white bread, she insisted on brown loaves—cardboard-like in comparison. “It’s healthier,” she would respond as she placed whole-wheat bread in our shopping cart. And, for the majority of age six, I was convinced I’d never enjoy a grilled cheese sandwich again.
Today, I can’t get enough of nutty, whole-wheat flour. I use it in breads and cookies and crusts for an extra depth of flavor and bite. Baking with whole wheat just requires a little more thought than using plain ol’ all-purpose. Whole-wheat flour is partly or entirely milled from whole or almost-whole wheat grains (not to be confused with whole grain, which can be made of any whole-grain kernel) and can make baked goods very dense. But instead of shying away from what you don’t understand (like six-year-old me), experiment with robust recipes that can handle the extra weight. Here, we’ve gathered 16 cookies, breads, pies, and more that highlight wonderful whole wheat.