Grammie’s Oatmeal Molasses Brown Bread


I mentioned in an earlier post how most of Canada is now in the midst of the “dog days” of winter.  I live on the east coast and we have already been totally pummeled this year and winter has officially, barely begun.  On December 23rd we were entombed in ice more than an inch thick, lost power for days (many for up to 11 days!) had four successive snow storms and are now in the midst of bone chilling, record breaking cold temperatures.

What is a girl to do with all of this wild weather but to head to the kitchen and start baking! We had a big ham dinner on New Years Day and a couple of days later, to my surprise, had some ham still remaining!  So for dinner that night,  to serve with the ham, I decided to make a big batch of homemade baked beans and a couple loaves of my grandmother’s Oatmeal Molasses Brown Bread.  I have modified her original bread recipe just a bit, but the results are still as fabulous!


When working with yeast the temperature of the liquid used to activate the yeast is VERY important. Too cool and the yeast won’t activate, too hot and you will kill the yeast.  Many people just go by “feel”; the water should feel warm on your wrist, but not hot.  However, I am not confident in the guessing method so I have always used a thermometer to get the exact temperature of the liquid before adding my yeast.


When you have added enough flour to the mixture, the dough should clean the sides of the bowl.  In the picture above, the dough still needed about 1/8 of a cup and it then almost completely cleaned the sides of the bowl.  Once the bowl is “clean”, start your 10 minutes of kneading time.


The glossy mound of soft dough, all oiled and ready to be put in a warm place to rise. (Note the “cleaned” bowl, it is the same one I used for mixing, it has not been washed, and there is barely a trace of dough on the sides.}


The warm, soft, mass of dough has paused just long enough for a quick picture before being divided in two and placed into waiting pans.


If only I could do justice to the sweet, yeasty, hearty perfume wafting from the oven when these beauties were baking.  I could barely restrain myself  from loping off a big slice and slathering it with butter…DELICIOUS!


I could wait no longer!

4.5 from 10 reviews
Oatmeal Molasses Brown Bread
Recipe type: Bread
  • 3 tsp active dry yeast
  • 11/2 cup warm water (110°F to 115°F)
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 Tbsp butter (melted and cooled)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup molasses
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 4 to 5 cups of flour
  1. In a large mixing bowl add yeast and honey to the warm water, let sit until creamy and bubbly.
  2. Affix paddle attachment to mixer and add the butter, sugar, egg and molasses, mix well.
  3. Affix dough hook and add 3 cups of the flour, salt and rolled oats, mix well.
  4. Gradually add only enough of the remaining flour to make a soft dough that cleans the sides of the bowl when mixing.
  5. How much flour added will depend on a multitude of variables.(humidity, weather, measuring technique, etc) Today, I used about 41/2 cups total.
  6. Using dough hook attachment knead for 10 minutes.
  7. The dough should feel soft and but not sticky. If dough is sticky add a bit more flour and knead another couple minutes.
  8. Place the dough in a greased bowl.(I use the same bowl, remove the dough, add some olive oil and put the dough back in the bowl and move it around to cover it in the oil.)
  9. Cover with a clean tea towel and place in a warm spot. (If you have a "proof" setting on your oven you can use this or place in a nice warm spot away from any draft.)
  10. Let rise until the dough doubles in size, about 2 hours.
  11. Meanwhile, butter two 6" x 10" loaf pans.
  12. Remove dough from bowl to a clean cutting board and divide dough into two pieces.
  13. Shape each piece into a log shape and place in greased pan. Sprinkle each loaf with a bit of oatmeal.
  14. Cover pans and return to warm place until once again doubled in size; approximately 1 hour.
  15. Preheat oven to 350°F and half fill a small ovenproof dish with water.
  16. When dough has doubled in size, place both breads and pan of water in oven. (The moisture from the water will help the bread rise even more and make a crunchy top).
  17. Bake for 45 - 55 minutes until golden and hollow sounding when tapped.
  18. Remove from the oven and let sit in the pan 15 - 20 minutes. Then remove the loaves to a rack to finish cooling.


I hope you enjoy this recipe and as always, if you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Happy Baking!




  1. Wow does that ever look good! Especially right out of the oven with butter.

  2. Kerrie @ Family Food and Travel says:

    Wow – that looks amazing. My husband would love this bread – I’m sending him the link right now!

  3. stephanie says:

    This looks incredible, I love homemade bread.

  4. Nancy @ Whispered Inspirations says:

    Umm, WOW. Can you say perfect???? This looks amazing. I bet you it tastes divine.

  5. Gingermommy says:

    Wow! You have some really great recipes on here. This looks great! I have never had luck with bread before but I want to give it another try

  6. Great tasting bread, easy and quick to make…love it!!!

  7. I was just wondering if margarine (Bacel) will give the same results?

    • Hi Natalie,

      You can certainly use margarine and the results will be the same, however, it MUST be the hard/block form. The soft spreadable margarine in a tub will not give the same result.
      Hope this answers your question Natalie.


  8. I like your site.

    When i view your article and view your site have good.

    I have feel good in your content the best.

    thanks for this nice information.

    I like to eat bread.

  9. Hello there,

    Made this delicious bread once and everyone loved it. I am making it again, but the honey/yeast mixture is not bubbling. I wonder if the bread will turn out anyway. Any idea why the mixture did not bubble?

    • Hi Lorraine,

      As long as the yeast looks like it is “moving around” and getting creamy looking on the top, it will be fine. I’m including a link you may find helpful. Hope this answers your question.


  10. Absolutely love baking different breads and after sharing with friends from work I think it’s become a favorite with them also.
    Extra bonus, it makes my home smell like heaven.

  11. HI! This is an old post, but I’m commenting anyway. I used to make an oatmeal molasses bread years ago but lost the recipe. There seem to be quite a few recipes on the web for this bread, and I’ve tried 3 of them so far. Yours is next. I can’t get the same height to the loaf and the density is also different. It’s been almost 40 years since I lost the recipe, so I have absolutely no clue what is different. Hope this one is it!

  12. Still Happygal says:

    Halved the recipe as there are only 2 of us. Still used the one small egg. Made 2 beautiful small loaves. Went perfectly with our homemade molasses beans. Thanks for sharing.

  13. I need to know if you could add radius in this and when would you add

  14. Are you my Mom? Because this sure sounds like my Mom.

  15. New Brunswick pear says:

    Soo good. :)

  16. Hi silly question but I have made brown bread before and that recipe said to soak the oats for at least an hour. I noticed this one didn’t. My question is does it matter if you soak the oats or not?

    • Hi Tara,

      Not sure about other recipes, but with this one there is no soaking required.
      With the other recipe, all I can think of is, it may possibly have something to do with the amount of liquid in the recipe.


  17. I hope mine will turn out like yours.

    • I’m sure it will Kim and if you have any questions at all, don’t hesitate to ask.

    • I made this bread to go with roasted pumpkin soup for dinner. It was so easy and the tast and texture were wonderful. It was the star of the meal. Also wonderfu as toast with peanutbutter the next day. Thank You for the recipe.

  18. Thank You for this recipe. I made it yesterday with roasted pumpkin soup. It was so good. We even had it toasted this morning. YUM very easy to make.

  19. How would this recipe be altered if using a bread maker?

    • Hi Lauren, I’m sorry but I’m not sure. I am thinking you would do the mixing in the breadmaker and then let it rise according to the instructions here, but I don’t own a breadmaker so I am not certain.

  20. Barbara says:

    If I double the recipe, will effect the taste…because this bread is awesome?


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  4. […] #8 Grammie’s Oatmeal Molasses Brown Bread ~ What is a girl to do with all of this wild weather but to head to the kitchen and start baking! We had a big ham dinner on New Years Day and a couple of days later, to my surprise, had some ham still remaining!  So for dinner that night,  to serve with the ham, I decided to make a big batch of homemade baked beans and a couple loaves of my grandmother’s Oatmeal Molasses Brown Bread.  I have modified her original bread recipe just a bit, but the results are still as fabulous! […]

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