Whole Wheat

Whole Wheat Flour Is Not Boring & Here're 16 Reasons Why

March  6, 2018

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.

Breads & Muffins

Pies, Tarts & Crisps


What’s your favorite way to use whole-wheat flour? Dish in the comments!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Posie (Harwood) Brien
    Posie (Harwood) Brien
  • Anna Gsanger
    Anna Gsanger
Katie is a food writer and editor who loves cheesy puns and cheesy cheese.


Posie (. March 6, 2018
Yay! Love it. Good tip for anyone baking: If you want to use more whole wheat flour, most recipes can easily handle it but I always start by swapping out 50% of the flour called for with whole wheat first to see how that does and pretty much any recipe can safely handle that swap without altering the texture too much. Also, for pastries, white whole wheat is a fantastic flour to use which has all the nutrition but a milder flavor and creamier color.
Anna G. March 6, 2018
I have been baking with half whole wheat half white for the last several months. It began as an accident (I live in Germany and did a last minute run to the grocery and forgot to translate correctly - I bought three bags of whole wheat flour and decided to just mix it up) and has ended up with family favorites. From chocolate chip cookies to babka to Ciabatta, they love it and don't really notice the extra nuttiness as a difference. I will try these recipes as well!