January 19, 2022

Sourdough raisin bread with ancient grains

Sourdough raisin bread with ancient grains recipe

This healthy sourdough raisin bread is perfect for a healthy breakfast or a nutritious snack during the day. With a generous spread of butter it tastes amazing. Made with ancient emmer wheat and spelt, it contains all the health benefits.

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Why sourdough?

  • It’s easier to digest
  • “Unlocks” nutrients
  • Amazing taste
  • Lower gluten content
  • Lower phytic acid
  • Easy to use with ancient grains
  • Full of healthy bacteria
  • Natural ingredients
  • Unprocessed

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. See my full disclosure here.

Why would you want to bother and take two days to bake a sourdough bread when you can take a package of yeast and fix it in a few hours? Well, here’s why…

You are what you digest

By fermenting your foods you basically pre-digest the food. The healthy bacteria help break down the phytic acid which makes it easier for your body to actually use the nutrients. You could bake two loaves with the exact same ingredients, one with yeast, one with sourdough. When you would look at the nutritional value it would tell you the same, but… It might very well be that you’ll be able to digest the sourdough loaf better and thus you would be able to take in much more of the nutrients. You are what you digest. Also, the bacteria help to maintain a healthy gut, which in turn helps make a healthy immune system.

Healthy bacteria

Our bodies need bacteria. They help us to digest our food and take out important nutrients. That’s why it’s so important we prepare our food the right way. Fermenting is one of those ways to add more (gut) healthy bacteria to our diet.

Sourdough Starter


Natural & unprocessed

Why choose processed when you can keep it natural? I like our food to be as unprocessed as can be & usually that means that I’ll have to make and bake our own meals from scratch. By choosing natural products that are unprocessed, you’re (usually) also choosing the healthier option. In the commercial processing of food often a lot of healthy components are lost or they contain additives that our bodies just don’t need. When you bake your own bread, you can select the ingredients, so you know exactly what you’re feeding your family.

New to sourdough?

Are you ready to dive into the world of sourdough but not sure where to start? Grab my free “Starting sourdough e-book”. In the book I’ll explain how to make a sourdough starter step-by-step. Subscribe here and start today!

Ancient grains

Many of todays wheat varieties are hybridized. That means that certain qualities of two varieties of wheat are selected and cross bred. This is mostly done to create a bigger yield and to create disease resistance, not for the health benefits. And that’s the problem with most of the modern day wheats. Because they’re made up so differently from what they used to be, our bodies have a hard(er) time digesting. Ancient grains like einkorn and emmer naturally have a much lower gluten content and contain more proteins.

Rustic sourdough bread


Sourdough raisin bread recipe

Our children love this bread. While they are not a big fan of store bought raisin bread, this one was a real hit!

Mixing the dough

When you mix the dough it’s important not to mix in the raisins right away. If you have the time, you’ll be doing four stretch & folds before you shape the dough. The raisins should be added when you start the stretch & folds, or even after the stretch and folds you can dimple them in. But they should not be added as soon as you’re mixing your flour, salt, water, etc. If you do you’ll end up with (more) crushed raisins.

If you have enough time, it’s best to soak the raisins for a few hours or even overnight. That way they won’t absorp much of the moisture form the bread once baked, preventing it from drying out too much.

Stretching the dough

To achieve a nice and strong, but supple dough and a nice crumb once baked, you’ll need to do some streching and folding. If you don’t have the time to do so or in case you forget… which I never do… ahum… You’ll end up with an equally delicious sourdough bread, only the crumb and structure might be slightly different.

I find that with a good four stretch & folds I get more and larger, irregular holes in the dough. Less streching and folding will result in less holes and a more dense crumb. But, like my father says, holes don’t taste like anything, so don’t worry if yours turns out with a less rustic look. Let’s go…!

Sliced sourdough raisin bread
Sourdough raisin bread with ancient grains recipe

Sourdough raisin bread with ancient grains

Yield: 1 loaf
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Additional Time: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day 40 minutes

This healthy sourdough raisin bread is perfect for a healthy breakfast or a nutritious snack during the day. Made with ancient emmer wheat and spelt, it contains all the health benefits.


  • 200 grams of whole emmer wheat (40%)
  • 300 grams of spelt flour (60%)
  • 250 grams of water (60%)
  • 100 grams of sourdough (20%)
  • 50 grams of whole whipping cream (10%)
  • 50 grams of melted butter (8%)
  • 10 grams of sea salt (2%)
  • 250 grams of raisins


Please read the notes below before you start.

The night before you want to make the dough, feed your starter at 100%. That means equal amounts of water and whole rye flour. I like to use 50 grams of starter and add 100 grams of water and 100 grams of whole rye flour. Soak the raisins overnight.

The next morning you'll make the dough. Add 100 grams of fed starter to a medium size bowl and add water and melted butter. Stir until sourdough starter is dissolved in the water, cream and melted butter.

Add both emmer and spelt to the water, cream, butter and starter mixture. Before you start mixing, sprinkle the salt over the flour and distribute, making sure you don't have any clumps of salt! Mix the ingredients untill it forms into a nice, round, slightly sticky ball.

Depending on how much time you have take the slow or quick route.


Cover the bowl with a tea towel and let it rest for about an hour. Add the raisins when you do the last two stretch and folds. Then do stretch and folds, 3 to 4 with 30 minute intervals.

Place the dough in a well floured proofing basket.

Place in the fridge, uncovered, and proof overnight.


If you don't have the time to do the stretch and folds, add the raisins to the dough and place the dough in the proofing basket and place in a fairly cold environment, but not as cold as your fridge. You want your dough to continue proofing, but not as fast as it would in a room temperature environment. You also don't want to slow it down as much as your fridge would. Cover the bowl with a tea towel or plate and let sit until the next morning. This works if you make the dough late at night and bake in the morning.


Place your Dutch oven or chamotte stone inside the oven. Preheat the oven to 250°C or 482° F for about an hour. Take your dough and remove it from the basket, place it unto a floured wooden board, shape if necessary and score. Bake for 20 minutes with steam. After 20 minutes release steam and continue to bake for 17-20 minutes depending on how dark you desire the crust to be.
Remove from oven and if you can wait, give it a few minutes to cool before slicing.


    Since you'll use whole emmer wheat in the dough, you can feed your starter with whole emmer wheat instead of whole rye.

    I recommend you only choose the "quick-route" when you have a well established, strong and mature starter.

    If you don't have a proofing basket you can use a rectangular cake mould. Line the mould with a tea towel and generously dust it with (rice) flour. Rice flour doesn't develop gluten so it's great for dusting since it won't make your dough stick to the surface.

    Don't add the raisins right away when you start mixing, or you'll end up with more crushed raisins. Add them when you have a fairly cohesive dough.

    Are you a beginner at sourdough? One tool I highly recommend is a Dutch oven. It almost always give good results and a loaf with a nice spring. And consider subscribing to use my free e-book "Starting Sourdough".

Doodle for sourdough raisin bread

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Recipe Sourdough raisin bread

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