|Delicious keto bread that isn't heavy, dense, or crumbly!|
When I began my successful keto diet journey in 2019, Maya Krampf's popular Wholesome Yum website and The Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Cookbook (which I have recommended in my Keto Gift Guide and other posts here on Review This Reviews) quickly became two of my go-to resources for quick and easy, healthy keto recipes and reliable information about the ketogenic approach to eating. Maya also has developed a line of high quality, low carb, gluten free, keto food products made with clean ingredients (including her excellent Besti keto-friendly sweeteners), and new products continue to be added to her Wholesome Yum Foods online shop.
The Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix that launched on December 21, 2020 is one of Maya's newest products. I think it's also one of her best!
A few days ago, she also published a new Keto Yeast Bread Recipe for this bread mix that delivers even more impressive and delicious results. I’m excited to share my in-depth product review of this excellent Wholesome Yum mix and compare the differences in between the loaves I've made with original recipe and the new keto yeast bread recipe.
|This keto bread mix has all the pre-measured dry ingredients for a delicious, fresh-baked loaf|
Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix, Original Recipe (No Yeast)
The directions currently printed on the bag require just three ingredients in addition to the packaged mix: 6 tablespoons of butter, 4 large eggs, and 3/4 cup (6 ounces) of unsweetened almond milk.
You can replace the almond milk with a different keto-friendly milk, if you wish.
Line the Loaf Pan With Baking Parchment Paper
The recipe calls for the prepared bread mix to be baked in an 8" x 4" loaf pan lined with baking parchment paper, with the parchment paper overhanging at least the two long sides of the pan.
|Make sure the parchment paper overhangs the long sides of the pan|
I have been lining the pan with unbleached If You Care Parchment Baking Paper, which is chlorine-free and compostable. It's also silicone coated, and nothing sticks to it!
For environmental reasons, the box doesn't have a serrated metal cutting strip. Since the larger, softer cardboard "teeth" don't cut as cleanly as the metal ones, I just use scissors to trim the a sheet of the desired length.
Allow Time to Bring the Ingredients to Room Temperature
All the ingredients should be at room temperature when make the keto bread dough/batter.
Note: Although there is an asterisked line to this effect in the printed directions on the bag, it's easy to miss, not only because the very small type is hard to read, but also because there are no corresponding asterisks attached to the individual ingredients. (A single asterisk with no corresponding reference is meaningless.) It would be helpful if this were fixed during the next packaging print run.
When a recipe calls for room temperature ingredients, they should be at approximately 70 °F (21 °C), with the exception of butter. Room temperature butter should be a bit cooler, roughly 65 °F (18 °C). It has reached the correct temperature when it is still a bit cool to the touch and retains its shape, but has softened enough to leave an indentation when pressed with a fingertip.
|One bag of mix + butter, eggs, and almond milk = quick and easy keto bread!|
Why Using Room Temperature Ingredients Matters When Making The Keto Bread Mix Batter
Using room temperature butter, eggs, and almond milk allows the butter to cream properly and the eggs and butter to be fully incorporated into the creamed butter, so there are no remaining clumps of butter after the dry ingredients in the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix are added.
Conversely, using ingredients that are too warm or too cold will likely produce less-than-optimal results.
When I tried the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix for the first time this January, the New England winter meant that our north-facing kitchen (with its large expanse of windows) was quite chilly. As a result, even after sitting out on the counter for a couple of hours, my "room temperature" eggs, and almond milk were much cooler than 70 °F (21 °C), and even my butter was colder than 65 °F (18 °C) and had very little "give" when pressed with a fingertip.
As a result, even after being creamed at high speed with my trusty KitchenAid mixer for for nearly 15 minutes, the butter never softened fully, and when I added the eggs and almond milk to it, they wouldn't incorporate smoothly, no matter how long I beat the mixture.
You can see in following photo that the first batch of keto bread dough/batter didn't come together as smoothly as it should and would have if my kitchen hadn't been so chilly.
|A cold kitchen made my butter a bit uncooperative!|
In retrospect, I could have put the unshelled, room temperature eggs in a bowl of warm water for 5–10 minutes and warmed the almond milk gently on the stovetop or in the microwave. However, the butter still would have been a problem, since using any form of added heat to soften butter without melting it is a tricky proposition.
The Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix Recipe Is Pretty Forgiving
|The first loaf I made with this keto bread mix turned out well, even with the too-cool ingredients|
Making low carb, gluten-free bread with Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix was easy. The hard part was waiting until the next day, as the package directions recommend, before slicing into the loaf so I could taste it!
|A lighter, less dense texture than most keto bread|
Although it is possible to find low carb bread recipes that don't contain almond flour, most of them do. Ground almonds are heavier than grain flours, lack gluten for structure, and interact differently with leavening agents. As a result, most loaves made from a keto bread recipe are pretty dense, and tend to crumble easily.
So, when I cut into the loaf I made with the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix, I was very pleased to see small air pockets, indicating a somewhat lighter, less dense texture than most low carb bread made with almond flour. (You can see the air pockets better in the close-up photo of my half-sandwich.)
Not only did it make great toast, it also was less crumbly than most other keto-friendly almond flour breads, which allowed me to make a sandwich that didn't fall apart as soon as I bit into it!
My sweet half-sandwich on keto bread made with the Wholesome Yum mix
(Note: For scale, this is a salad plate.)
After making a great slice of toast, the next thing I tried was a sandwich. I had just received my order of keto-friendly Good Good sweet raspberry jam (which is currently out of stock, but other flavors are available, including Good Good Sweet Blueberry Jam) and ChocZero Chocolate Hazelnut Spread (a keto diet friendly alternative to Nutella), so I decided to cut a slice in half and make myself a raspberry-chocolate hazelnut half-sandwich. (Hey, don't knock it until you try it! I like to think of it as a 21st-century update to the Fluffernutter, a lunchbox favorite back in the 1960s, when I was a kid, that I can't imagine eating today.)
I was able to eat my half-sandwich without the bread crumbling or breaking, which was a major improvement over most other keto bread recipes or mixes I had tried.
The New Keto Yeast Bread Recipe Makes an Even Better Low Carb Loaf
Even though I was pleased with the results I was getting from Maya's new keto bread mix and had already begun to write a product review of it for Review This Reviews, I was extremely excited by her revelation last month in one of the Wholesome Yum Facebook groups I belong to that she had been working on a keto yeast bread recipe for the new mix and thought she was close to perfecting it.
I knew that adding yeast to the batter/dough would result in a taller loaf with a lighter, airier, more sponge-like texture and might also give the bread some of the flavor characteristics of conventional yeast breads.
I decided to hold off on my product review of the bread mix until the new recipe had been published, so I could compare it to the original and confirm or correct my assumptions about the effects of adding yeast to the batter.
|Feeding the yeast with inulin allows this keto yeast bread recipe to be 100% sugar free|
The Yeast Bread Version of the Recipe Adds Two Ingredients
Active Dry Yeast
You can use any brand of active dry yeast, such as Fleischmann's or Red Star. I decided to order my favorite from my BK (before keto) baking, SAF-Instant Premium Yeast - Red, which is widely used by professional bakers and consistently produces superior results with any type of bread, pizza, croissant, or other unsweetened doughs.
I discovered the red SAF-Instant Premium Yeast many years ago on the King Arthur Baking website (a reliable source of baking expertise and a go-to resource for baking enthusiasts). The fact that it's the yeast they use most often in their test kitchens was a good enough endorsement for me!
In addition to improving bread dough baking results, a 1-pound vacuum-sealed bag/brick of SAF-instant yeast ends up costing much, much less per use than the 4-ounce jars or strips of three individual packets of active dry yeast sold in supermarkets.
I keep mine in the freezer in an airtight container, where it remains good for years, and unopened packages have a two-year shelf life.
Tip: If you're not following a low carb or keto diet, use SAF-Instant Premium Yeast - Gold, rather than the one in the red package, for making conventional sweet dough recipes.
In this recipe, the active dry yeast is fed with powdered inulin, a soluble fiber and prebiotic, instead of the sugar or other high glycemic index sweeteners that recipes typically used for that purpose.
I was in such a rush to order inulin powder for this recipe that I inadvertently ordered a huge 2.2-pound bag of it on Amazon (with free Amazon Prime delivery)! However, since it you need only one teaspoon of it per 2¼ teaspoons (or one packet) of active dry yeast, I recommend buying a smaller package, such as this 8-ounce bag of 100% pure inulin powder that is made in the USA (in Utah) from non-GMO Jerusalem artichokes, sometimes called sunchokes.
Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe
To make the keto yeast bread recipe, you start by mixing the batter according to the original recipe, then fold in active dry yeast bloomed in lukewarm water mixed with inulin powder, and set the covered yeast batter aside in a warm spot to proof. After the yeast bread batter/dough has been allowed to rise for an hour, it is transferred to the parchment-line loaf pan and baked at the same temperature, and for the same length of time, as the original recipe. And, like the original recipe, the baked loaf should be removed to a cooling rack and left until it has cooled completely (overnight, if possible) before you slice into it.
Here are the ingredients, tools, supplies, and equipment you will need to make Maya's new keto yeast bread recipe.
- 2¼ teaspoons (or 1 packet) active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup (59 ml) lukewarm water, 105–115 °F (41–46 °C)
- 1 teaspoon of inulin powder *
- 1 bag Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix
- 6 tablespoons butter **
- 4 large eggs ** (not medium, extra-large, or jumbo size)
- 3/4 cup (6 fl. oz.) unsweetened almond milk ** ***
Tools, Supplies, and Equipment:
- A hand mixer or stand mixer
- A large mixing bowl
- A rubber scraper (to scrape the bowl and beaters)
- Plastic wrap (to cover the bowl of prepared yeast dough before setting it aside to proof/rise) ****
- An 8" x 4" loaf pan
- Baking parchment paper to line the pan (I highly recommend using unbleached baking parchment)
- A cooling rack
* The inulin powder is a prebiotic fiber that is used in this recipe to feed the yeast. It is a keto-friendly alternative to feeding the yeast with sugar, honey, or other high-glycemic sweeteners that can elevate your blood glucose and insulin levels. If you follow a strict sugar-free or keto diet and want to ensure that your keto bread is absolutely sugar free, the inulin in this recipe is an essential ingredient that cannot be substituted. However, for people whose dietary requirements and preferences are less strict, the recipe also offers the option to replace the teaspoon of inulin powder with a teaspoon of coconut sugar.
** At room temperature
*** Use plain, unsweetened almond milk for this recipe. Unless the package specifically says "unsweetened almond milk," assume it contains added sugar, and is not suitable for a low carb, sugar-free, or keto diet.
**** I recommend biodegradable, reusable beeswax food wrap as a more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternative to disposable plastic wrap (aka cling film). It's available either precut or in rolled sheets that you can cut to size, as needed. Although I own and use both types, I'd suggest buying an uncut roll to ensure that you'll have a large enough piece to cover your large mixing bowl while the keto bread batter is proofing.
Follow Maya's full Keto Yeast Bread Recipe on Wholesome Yum, which provides not only step-by-step directions with photos, but also helpful tips, refrigerator and freezer storage instructions, and an FAQ that answers questions such as as whether yeast and inulin are keto-friendly ingredients.
This Keto Yeast Bread Recipe Turned Out Even Better The Second Time!
Update 4/8/21: Last weekend, we finally had a warm-ish spring day here in New England (a "balmy" 58 degrees Fahrenheit, lol!). I had just finished the last slice from my first loaf, and hoped that my room temperature eggs, butter and nut milk would be warmer and more cooperative this time. Indeed, they were! I was able to get the butter to cream properly, so it was nicely pale and fluffy. And the eggs and nut milk (I used macadamia nut milk this time) were fully incorporated into the creamed butter, so there were no large lumps of butter in my yeast bread batter, which made it much easier to smooth the top after transferring it to the parchment paper-lined loaf pan.
|My second keto yeast bread loaf|
Comparing Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix Original and Keto Yeast Bread Recipes
When I followed the original Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix recipe printed on the bag, the top of the baked loaf remained lower than the rim of the baking pan.
|The basic recipe without yeast produces a shorter loaf|
However, when I followed the new keto yeast bread recipe, the batter's volume increased considerably as it proofed, which produced a baked loaf that was taller than baking pan.
|Adding yeast to the original batter recipe produces a larger, taller loaf that rises above the pan rim|
Size and Texture
The recipe printed on the bag produced slices that were slightly larger, and had more air pockets and a lighter texture, than typical keto breads.
As you can see, the slices of this loaf, which was made with the Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe, were significantly larger and had many more air pockets and and an even lighter texture vs. those cut from previous loaf made with the original Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix recipe.
Time and Effort
The time it takes to bloom the yeast and fold it into the prepared batter is minimal.
However, the yeasted dough also needs to be covered and set aside to proof before it is transferred to the parchment paper-lined pan, which add 60 minutes to the total time, start-to-finish.
On the other hand, since the batter doesn't need to be monitored while it's proofing, that time can be spent elsewhere, on other activities.
Unless I'm pressed for time or can't start baking until later in the day, I consider the superior loaf produced with Maya's new Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe well worth the minimal additional effort and the one-hour delay while the batter is proofing.
However, even without the addition of yeast, the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix is a convenient, time-saving, and delicious option for making freshly baked, keto-friendly bread.
Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe by Margaret Schindel
Posts About My Keto Diet Journey
Reviews of the Keto Diet by Barbara C. (aka Brite-Ideas)
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