5 Ingredients or Fewer

Whole Wheat Pita Bread

January 15, 2013
2 Ratings
Photo by Becky Rosenthal
  • Prep time 1 hour
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Makes 8 medium pitas
Author Notes

There’s just something about making something completely from scratch that is indescribably satisfying for a home cook. While I've made my share of kitchen disasters, what keeps me cooking is the prideful moments of success like when I made homemade cannoli for the first time, or when a friend of mine and I created our own from-scratch Limoncello. Making your own bread is definitely, one of those moments in the kitchen when you really feel like you've accomplished something great. Pita Bread is the perfect start in homemade bread making, as it is an easier recipe making for a perfect cooking ego boost. After you make these pita pockets who knows, maybe you'll be making homemade challah or braided sweet rolls next!

We ate these pitas filled with warm lamb meat balls, and muhammara, a tasty walnut red pepper spread by Laziz Foods. Here are some more ideas of how to use pita bread—slice into wedges and dip into hummus or muhammara, make a sandwich with turkey or ham and veggies, fill with falafel or black bean burger patties, or re-warm in oven and cover with honey, cinnamon and sugar for dessert. Once you make them you’ll be finding all kinds of uses for them. Believe me, they won’t be left around the kitchen long.

The recipe is quite simple and only takes about an hour. There are 4 steps in the process of making pita bread—assembling the ingredients, forming and divide the dough, rolling out dough into flat circles and letting it rise, then baking the dough. Then, magically, the little flat pancake-like rounds puff morph into perfectly round pitas. The only hard part is deciding what tasty ingredients to fill them with. —Becky Rosenthal

What You'll Need
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  1. Dissolve yeast in water for about 5 minutes in the bowl of an electric mixer, watch for yeast to bubble up, showing it's active.
  2. Add salt and half of the flour, beat with a dough hook to make a batter. Add additional flour until a rough, shaggy mass is formed. Knead 8 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Add more flour if it is too sticky.
  3. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 8 pitas for medium sized pita bread.
  4. Form dough into balls, then flatten with a rolling pin into ¼ inch thick discs. Try and keep an even thickness as this is what helps them ‘puff’.
  5. Let rest on the floured surface 30 to 40 minutes until slightly puffed. Preheat oven to 425° F.
  6. With a large spatula, flip the rounds of dough upside down on to a baking sheet. Bake 10 to 15 minutes until light golden. Stick around to watch for the first five minutes of baking when the pitas perform their magic and puff up from flat pancakes to proud, four inch high pitas!

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Bonnie Fallahi
    Bonnie Fallahi
  • Kitchie
  • shiri
  • Robin Lewis Kane
    Robin Lewis Kane
  • adele93
I romanticize my grandmother’s era. Perhaps I’m a victim of Golden Age thinking, but I think she could teach our era how to host a party, warm up a room, welcome strangers, cook for them and strike up a meaningful conversation. We could better learn from her how to sit down, eat and enjoy each other. The heart of Vintage Mixer is about a meal, a table and a conversation.

12 Reviews

Bonnie F. March 26, 2019
I have never made bread before and for sure not pita bread. Needless to say expectation were low. I am elated at the results! It's a bit heavy, I think because I didn't roll it out quite enough as I was trying to adhere to the 1/4 inch suggestion. Also I think I might have kneaded it just a little too much, at least that's all I can figure out. For the first time and a brand new baker...I can't be happier. Thanks for this recipe and the great tips in the reviews.
Peanut March 19, 2019
I didn't have whole wheat pastry flour so used 1/2 whole wheat flour + 1/2 cake flour. These turned out great!! I tried cooking some on a pizza stone, some on a baking sheet, and some on a nonstick skillet - the baking stone worked best (but of course, you can only cook one at a time this way). I had some problems making the dough into pretty discs or ovals, but I embraced a rustic look. After a few days, when the pitas were starting to be a bit dry and past their prime, I tore them up, tossed them with olive oil and salt, and baked them into pita chips that I put into a salad with halved grape tomatoes, fresh mint and fresh basil, lemon zest and juice, olive oil, crushed garlic, and romaine, topped with sliced skirt steak. Heavenly. This recipe is a winner, for both right away and for leftovers!
Kitchie May 22, 2016
I've made pitas half a dozen times or so (though not this recipe yet), and I invariably get a heavy bottom, as it were, and a crispy top. Any advice? Thanks!
shiri April 6, 2014
I am surprised you used pastry flour here rather than bread flour--not a typo?
Robin L. February 18, 2013
I put the yeast, salt, and flour in the bowl of my food processor with a dough blade and pour in the water while it's blending. I've adapted most of my bread recipes to this method without additional bowls or proofing of the yeast. It always seems to work. Is there any reason why this isn't done? Does anyone else do this?
adele93 February 17, 2013
im watching the second batch cook in the oven now - rising beautifully. the first batch didnt really rise as much, but i turned the oven down a bit and that seemed to do the trick for the second batch, i had an incident with the dry yeast at the start and had to add more, that wasn't a problem, i will defently be making these again :)
adele93 February 12, 2013
would it be possible to use all SR flouring - im out of plain flour??
Becky R. February 13, 2013
Adele, I think that would definitely change things in the recipe. I would try it first with plain flour just to be safe. Hope that helps :)
adele93 February 12, 2013
i dont have access to whole wheat pastry flour - would normal whole wheat SR flour be okay?
RoundLake C. January 26, 2013
Are the amounts of water and flour correct as published? instead of dough it was a watery batter. I ended up adding about 3 more cups of flour before the dough became smooth and elastic. And, well, they never puffed.
[email protected] January 22, 2013
Can you make this with gluten free flour?
Becky R. January 23, 2013
Bob, I haven't tried but I would think that you could if you use the same ratios! Let me know how they turn out!