Authentic German Bread (Bauernbrot)

Authentic German Bread (Bauernbrot)

Made  times
Petra 13

"Here is a great recipe for authentic German Sourdough Bread. This bread tastes almost exactly like the bread we buy back home in Bavaria, Germany. There, to this day, they bake their bread in a very old stone oven in the middle of a small village, once every 2 weeks. They bake a whole bunch at once, and then you can buy it and freeze extras until the next baking day. It's the best German bread I know!"
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2 d 5 h servings 334 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 20 servings



  • Calories:
  • 334 kcal
  • 17%
  • Fat:
  • 1.3 g
  • 2%
  • Carbs:
  • 71.6g
  • 23%
  • Protein:
  • 9.2 g
  • 18%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 0 mg
  • 0%
  • Sodium:
  • 702 mg
  • 28%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. First, make the sourdough starter. Crumble the yeast into a large bowl. Whisk in 1 quart of warm water and 2 tablespoons of sugar until dissolved. The water should be just slightly warmer than body temperature. Gradually whisk in 4 cups of flour, continuing to mix until all lumps are gone. Cover with a dish towel, and let sit for 24 hours at room temperature.
  2. After 24 hours, stir well, cover, and let stand another 24 hours. It will be a thin, light-colored sourdough which is then ready to use.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the rye flour, 4 cups of all-purpose flour, salt and sugar. Mix in the sourdough starter using a wooden spoon, then stir in 2 cups of warm water. I transfer the dough to a heavy duty stand mixer to mix the first couple of minutes, then it can't handle the heavy dough and I start using my hands by turning the dough out onto a floured surface. A clean countertop works best. Knead the dough, adding a few tablespoons of water at a time if it is too stiff. Fold the dough over, pull it apart, whatever you can do to get it kneaded up good. Total kneading time should be 15 to 20 minutes to get a smooth dough. Place the dough in a large bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled, 1 to 2 hours.
  4. When the dough has risen, scrape it out of the bowl and back onto a floured surface. Knead for about 5 minutes. This is important to activate the gluten. Shape into 1 or 2 long loaves. Place on baking sheets, and let rise for about 1 hour, or until your finger leaves an impression when you poke the bread gently.
  5. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Bake the bread for about 45 minutes for 2 loaves, 1 1/2 hours if you made one big loaf. Don't worry if the crust is dark. The bread will be delicious and so will the crust. Cool completely before cutting. I always freeze half.


  • Notes
  • If you want to make extra starter for the next time, simply add 2 cups of all-purpose flour and 2 cups water to the sourdough starter on the second day, and whisk smooth. Then let stand at room temperature for 24 hours before next use. Use half, and save the other half for the next time. Let stand for 24 hours, stirring once before using. If freezing, use within 2 weeks.
  • Humidity and heat play a big role in making this bread. It may not work well if it is to humid and hot outside. In this case I recommend that you make the bread starting at 5am.


  1. 52 Ratings

Most helpful positive review

I submitted this recipe and I really want to share something valuable. In Germany, we usually add spices to the bread and they are available for purchase already ground up or as seeds. If you wa...

Most helpful critical review

I will try this again...the loaf(s) ended up fairly flat as if I hurried the rise. That wasn't the case.

I submitted this recipe and I really want to share something valuable. In Germany, we usually add spices to the bread and they are available for purchase already ground up or as seeds. If you wa...

I have made this bread several times and as a German I can tell you it IS authentic! Great recipe!!!

I made this recipe and the bread is very good with a crunchy crust. I only made half of the recipe and was able to knead it entirely in the mixer. I still needed to use a very large bowl for th...

I absolutely loved this recipe. I lived in Germany for a year and absolutely fell in love with the bread there. Ever since I've returned to the States, I've been wishing that I could purchase G...

This is a great recipe but a lot of work. I've used other, simpler recipes that are just as good. On the other hand...I did get two GIANT round loaves out of this so I guess it was worth the eff...

FYI ... 1 1/2 ounces fresh yesast equals 5 tsp plus a scant more of instant yeast. This is a wonderful bread, worth the advance planning !

the one problem i found /when i make it into oblong loafs /let it rise / it flaten /and spreads out /so the bread ends up anout 3 inches in hight /is there a special pan /or secret to keep the b...

This the best bread I've had since leaving Germany several years ago. I took the suggestion and added a little potatoe flour. Otherwise I followed it exactly. I compared it to some bread we pu...

You did a very good job on this. The only difference is we use wheat flour in place of white. We also use sunflower seeds.

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