Positively Perfect Gluten Free Pumpernickel

Positively Perfect Gluten Free Pumpernickel

If you have a copy of my gfJules™ Bread Baking e-book, I hope you have already put this gluten free pumpernickel recipe to good use! If you don’t have my e-book, welcome to a whole new world of gluten free bread baking with a sneak peak of one of the recipes you’ll find inside.

gluten free pumpernickel loaf gfJules.com

This gluten free pumpernickel recipe will turn everything you knew (or thought you knew) about gluten free bread on its head … in the best possible way: the dough is as wet as cake batter; the ingredients are crazy; the loaf size is huge; the bread is moist enough to be sliced so thinly you can almost see through it; and the crumb is soft and pliable and it stays that way for days. I also offer directions to bake in a bread machine or in an oven — your call.

gluten free pumpernickel cucumber

In other words, this gluten free pumpernickel just might become your new favorite gluten free bread for sandwiches or just for munching! I feel a cucumber sandwich coming on!

Gluten Free Pumpernickel Hummus-SandwichEnjoy this aromatic homemade gluten free pumpernickel while its baking and for days of sandwiches thereafter!

Homemade Gluten Free Pumpernickel Bread gfJules.com

gluten free pumpernickel loaf gfJules.com

Positively Perfect Gluten Free Pumpernickel

Yield: 1 3-lb loaf
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes


  • ½ cup water or plain yogurt
  • ½ cup apple cider (or apple juice or gluten free beer)
  • 2 large eggs + 2 egg whites
  • 3 Tbs. molasses (or dark agave nectar or pure maple syrup)
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 3 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups gfJules™ All Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup buckwheat or millet flour (certified gluten-free)
  • ¼ cup milk powder, dairy or non-dairy NOT reconstituted (Coconut Milk Powder) or almond meal
  • 3 Tbs. granulated cane sugar (or granulated unrefined sugar like coconut palm)
  • 1 Tbs. cocoa powder (unsweetened, not “Dutched”)
  • 1 ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 Tbs. caraway seeds (optional)
  • 1 -2 tsp. orange peel, grated (optional)
  • 2 ¼ tsp. rapid rise yeast (1 packet) (Red Star® Quick Rise)


Mixer/Oven Method:

Bring all wet ingredients to room temperature (including eggs). Mix eggs, molasses, oil and cider vinegar in a large mixing bowl.  Combine dry ingredients, including yeast, in a separate bowl and whisk well.

Slowly stir the dry ingredients into the wet, adding the apple cider and water last to keep the flours in the bowl while mixing.  Continue to mix on medium speed until all lumps are smooth, approximately 3-5 minutes. The batter will be very wet like a cake batter, not like a typical bread dough.

Meanwhile prepare one 9×5 inch bread pan and three mini loaf pans, or two 9×5 inch bread pans or one 12×4 1/2 inch bread pan by oiling well. Pour batter into pans, but do not fill more than 2/3 full.  Cover with oiled parchment paper and allow to rise for 45 minutes in a warm place like an oven set to 200F then turned off. Watch to be sure the loaves do not rise above the top of the pans.

Preheat oven to 350°F (static) or 325°F (convection) and bake mini loaves for 15-20 minutes, larger loaves for 35-40 minutes, removing only when internal temperature is 205-210°F and a toothpick or skewer inserted into the center of each loaf comes out clean.

Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes in the pan before removing to finish cooling on a wire rack.  Slice once cooled.  Keep fully cooled loaves in a zip-top bag at room temperature.

Bread machine method (3lb loaf):

*This recipe makes a large loaf, so set your bread machine to its largest loaf setting (3lbs if that's an option). Because of the size of the loaf, a typical bread machine cycle may not bake it all the way through. Be prepared to add time at the end of the bake cycle, either on the machine if it will allow it, or by preheating your oven to 350° F and moving the bread pan to the preheated oven to add bake time.

The bread may sink in the middle somewhat (I've made several of these breads in various breadmakers, and they sometimes look a little funny on the top edge (a little like bat's ears - my kids love it, actually!), but the crumb is still gorgeous and the loaf should still cook all the way through, once it's reached an internal temperature of 205 - 210° F).

For those of you who have the T-fal® Breadmaker I recommend, the loaf below was baked in that machine. The gluten-free cycle does a great job and no time needs to be added.

Bring all wet ingredients to room temperature, whisk together, then pour into the bread pan. Whisk together dry ingredients (except for yeast) in a separate bowl, then pour on top of the wet ingredients in the pan.  Make a well in the center with your finger, then pour in yeast.

Set bread maker to gluten-free bread setting, OR, if your machine does not have a gluten-free setting, use “Dough” setting or a setting for mixing and rising only. Do not let the machine “punch-down” the bread or set for second rise. After rising, set machine to “Bake” for 60 minutes.

Remove only when the bread has come to an internal temperature of 205-210°F. If necessary, add bake time to the bread machine or when finished the bread machine cycle, finish baking in an oven preheated to 350°F.

Leave bread in the pan for 5-10 minutes before inverting gently to remove. Finish cooling on a wire rack and slice when cooled. Keep fully cooled loaves in a zip-top bag at room temperature.

I hope you love this recipe as much as we do!

Pin it for later!

This Gluten Free Pumpernickel recipe will make your day! Oven or bread machine directions -- either turns out this beautiful, moist, flavorful loaf!

Homemade Gluten Free Pumpernickel Bread gfJules.com
Homemade Gluten Free Pumpernickel Bread gfJules.com

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78 thoughts on “Positively Perfect Gluten Free Pumpernickel

  1. Hi Jules,

    I would like to make this recipe into rolls. I am going to try it in a muffin pan and see if it works. Also reduce the cooking time and use my trusty thermometer. Any pointers would be appreciated. I know it makes 2 loaves so the loaf will be for a cheese fondue and rolls for Thanksgiving dinner. I will let you know how it turns out.

    I am a long time user of your flour. I saw you do a demo in East Greenwich, RI at Back to Basics Market at least 8 years ago and your flour has been a staple in my pantry since.

    • What a great idea, Debbie! I would say to put the dough about 2/3 full in the muffin cups, let it rise and then bake, starting to check after about 20 minutes. I wouldn’t think it would take long to bake in the muffin cups. I love you idea! And how great that you saw me in Rhode Island so many years ago! What fond memories I have of that trip. So glad you have been able to rely on my flour ever since. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!!

  2. Jules,
    I have a quick question. Can this recipe be used to make rolls? Would it work if I used a muffin pan? How long would I need to bake? Since it make 2 loaves I thought rolls and one loaf would be nice for the holidays.

    Debbie – a long time user of you flour probably 8 years.

  3. I am new to being gluten free and miss bread. Just learning how to avoid wheat, corn, and yeast. I am allergic to yeast. What can I use in place of yeast?

    • Hi Kimberly, check out my no yeast bread recipe and you’ll see that the chemical leaveners (baking soda, baking powder …) plus using bubbly liquids like club soda can help to give your breads rise without yeast. Hope that helps!

  4. I am new to gluten free so I am just finding you. The doctor just put me on a diet that is gluten free and dairy free. I do not understand how it can be whole grain and be gluten free. Another question is yeast gluten free?
    Do you have recipes that are both gluten free and dairy free? I would like to make this recipe however I need the answers to these questions first.

    • Hi Sharon: Thanks for writing! ‘Whole grain’ describes the state of a given grain (not just wheat, but corn or rice or sorghum, etc.), so our gluten free Bread Mix can be ‘whole grain’ but on the ‘good’ (gluten-free) grains. Jules is dairy free, too, so you’re in luck, as all 400 or so recipes you’ll find on the gfJules site can be made dairy-free! I hope you’ll give our flour and/or mixes a shot, and certainly try out this wonderful recipe–it’s really awesome. Please let us know if there’s anything at all we can do to help you live gluten free, deliciously (and safely!).

    • And if you make it yourself Brianna, you won’t have to settle for 3 day old pumpernickel like I sent you home with! (guess it was good enough for the TSA agent, huh?! so funny!!!)

    • Thanks Amanda! I’m not a big fan of rye (guess my body knew it didn’t like me!) but I do love this yummy pumpernickel! Hope you get to try it sometime!

  5. The first three times I made this bread in my Cuisinart breadmaker it fell in the center creating a “bat ears” shaped slice after slicing. I made it twice at the elevation of Denver Colorado and once in Dallas with the same result. It always tasted great but as previously mentioned it fell in the center. After googling to find a solution to this problem I have made the following changes to the recipe:

    I substituted 1/2 cup of plain yoghurt for the 3/4 cup water
    I substituted 2 tbsp of baking Stevia (purchased at Kroger) for the 3 tbsp. of sugar
    I reduced the yeast from 2 1/4 tsps. to 2 tsps.

    The last two loaves made with these changes produced the proper shaped loaf that did not fall.
    I hope you have success with this as well.
    Happy baking!

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  7. Pumpernickel is on of my all-time favorite breads! I’ve never tried to make a gluten-free version, though. Thanks so much for sharing it at Savoring Saturdays, Jules! I’m going to feature it this weekend. 🙂

  8. Is there a way to successfully make this without eggs? Or without a bread machine? I’m allergic to eggs and don’t have a machine. Thanks!!

    • Hi Ally, I give instructions for both oven method and bread machine — it’s no problem if you don’t have a machine. You can look at my egg substitution guide and give some of those a try with this recipe, I’d particularly look to the flaxseed meal + water sub. Let me know if you try it with egg subs and which you use. I just haven’t had time to experiment with them in this recipe yet!

  9. OK just took mine out of the oven– it looks good. How can I make sure if it is cooked throughout- since I am not sure of the loaf size I baked it on…

    • Hi Rachelle, do you have an instant read thermometer? Those are worth their weight in gold when baking bread, so you’ll always know they’re cooked through. Should be 205F or so in the middle when it’s totally cooked.

  10. I look forward to trying this, but before I do vinegar is listed twice. Is this accurate? Thanks for all your great recipes over the years. Been a long time since I took your class in Clarksville, but it was life changing.

    • Hi Kathryn, I’m so glad you were able to take a cooking class with me and that it helped you on your road to delicious GF baking!!! :)
      Regarding this recipe, it’s somewhat confusing, granted, but one ingredient is Apple Cider, and one is Apple Cider VINEGAR. I hope that helps and that you make the recipe soon!