Gluten-Free Pumpernickel Bread

June 13, 2011
0 Ratings
  • Makes 1 Loaf
Author Notes

This bread is a gluten-free girl's dream come true. As a long time devotee of traditional pumpernickel bread, my gluten allergy encouraged me to set out to develop a gluten-free version that maintained the same delicious tang, moist and hearty texture, and crisp (almost peel-able) crust. The result: a heavenly mix of buttermilk, caraway seeds and cocoa powder. It’s so good, even if you could, you’ll never want to look back. —GreenGirl'sGourmet

What You'll Need
  • Dry Ingredients
  • 2 + 3/4 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour (such as Bob's Red Mill)
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 + 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon xanthan gum
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds, toasted
  • 5 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • Wet Ingredients
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons agave
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk, gently warmed
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees farenheight. Lightly grease a loaf pan and line it with parchment paper. Sprinkle the bottom with cornmeal.
  2. Whisk together dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. In the bowl if a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine all wet ingredients. Switch out whisk attachment for paddle, and with the machine running on medium speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. If the mixture looks too dry, add a little more buttermilk. Increase speed to medium-high and beat for 3 minutes.
  4. Spoon into prepared pan and smooth the top. Cover with a piece of greased plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise, about 30-45 minutes.
  5. Once the dough has risen to the top of the pan, cover with tin foil, place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove bread from the pan using the parchment and place on the rack to bake for 5 additional minutes. Remove parchment paper and let cool completely on a cooling rack before serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Adrienne Beitcher
    Adrienne Beitcher
  • susan g
    susan g
  • kellaitter
  • GreenGirl'sGourmet

8 Reviews

kellaitter December 23, 2022
I made this twice. Once for a Thanksgiving turkey stuffing mixed whole kasha and lots of other stuff, and once just for bread. Here are some of my tips: Use room temperature eggs. Start off by warming the milk and stirring in a TBS of the brown sugar from the 1/4 cup, then the yeast. I forgot to buy buttermilk the second time so used 3/4 cup half and half mixed with 1/4 cup water and 2 tsp vinegar. Prepare your wet and dry ingredients, then stir in the bubbling yeast to the wet. Add the dry to the wet. I used the 1/4 cup of corn meal in the dry ingredients, a TBS being used to dust the bottom of the loaf pan. Use greased spoons to place the dough into the lined loaf pan and to smooth. Let it rise for 60-75 minutes and bake as described.
GreenGirl'sGourmet November 22, 2017
You might try curdling some almond milk with a tsp or two of apple cider vinegar.
Adrienne B. November 22, 2017
what could I used as a buttermilk sub for this recipe? looks delish!
drmiggy September 26, 2013

Just made the bread and it's delicious. I had to bake it for closer to 55 min, though. Thanks!
Healing G. January 28, 2013
Hi there,
I have made this bread for a client a few times and they say it is the best gluten free bread they have ever tasted. (I did add some orange zest) I am not a fan of pumpernickel myself but the texture of this bread is so amazing that I have been experimenting with turning it into a regular loaf. I leave out the molasses,caraway, and coffee. The first time it was incredible but the second time it didn't rise so well. I did double the recipe the second time. Maybe it wasn't mixed as well? Anyway I have a few things I would love clarified to make this a great recipe.
I am wondering if the 1/4 cup of cornmeal is the cornmeal that you sprinkle on the pan or if it is part of the dry ingredients. It is not totally clear. Also you say to use active dry yeast but you don't activate it in the warm milk first. I have been using quick rise instant yeast because it just seemed like that would work better but I am curious if that is what you used too. Also, you say to add more buttermilk if it looks too dry but you don't tell us how it is supposed to look. What is the purpose of the tin foil? I have never used it and the bread turns out fine. Do you tent it so the batter doesn't stick to it?
Thanks for the recipe Gluten free girl!
drmiggy September 26, 2013
Hi Healing Gourmet

I had the same questions as you about the cornmeal and the yeast. I assumed the cornmeal went into the bread and it came out OK. I also followed the directions for the yeast and my bread didn't rise much on the proof, but did just fine in the oven. I think next time I will activate the yeast in the buttermilk, though. Hope that helps.
G F. June 27, 2012
Can't wait to try this! Just got a Kitchen Aid mixer and will be baking up a storm! Thank you for posting this recipe! We will be having Rubens for dinner. Ohhh have I missed them so!
susan G. May 26, 2012
Excellent! I'm hoping for more recipes from you.
I found a formula for a GF bread flour mix and used that -- http://www.make-your-own-bread.com/gluten_free_flour_mix.html.