Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread

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Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower BreadPin recipeFollow us 125.2k

Following several requests, I decided that my next video recipe should be this Grain-Free Sunflower Bread from my Apps. It's light, savoury and tastes just like wholegrain sunflower or rye bread. It's very low in carbs and perfect for the ketogenic diet. In fact, this recipe is so good that I decided to include it in my KetoDiet Cookbook.

There are a few important points you should always keep in mind when making this bread:

  • weigh the dry ingredients (cup measurements are not precise enough),
  • make sure you use psyllium husk powder (whole husks won't work),
  • be quick when mixing the wet and dry ingredients together and don't over-process the dough (or it will become clumpy and rubbery).

I admit that this bread may be a little tricky to get right at first but once you know how to do it, it becomes easy. For this reason I've created a video tutorial. I hope you like it!

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Note for KetoDiet users: Nutrition facts for this recipe are also included in the KetoDiet database. You can use Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread as an ingredient when creating custom meals.

Hands-on Overall

Nutritional values per slice (1 slice)

1.6 grams 6.4 grams 4.8 grams 10.7 grams 2.7 grams 124 calories
Total Carbs8grams
Fiber6.4grams
Net Carbs1.6grams
Protein4.8grams
Fat10.7grams
of which Saturated2.7grams
Calories124kcal
Magnesium36mg (9%)
Potassium160mg (8%)

Nutrition facts are calculated based on a recipe of 12 slices. Macronutrient ratio: Calories from carbs (5%), protein (16%), fat (79%)

Ingredients (makes 1 loaf, 10-12 slices)

Wet ingredients:
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 2 large egg whites (reserve 2 egg yolks for another recipe)
  • 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil (30 ml/ 1 fl oz)
  • 2 tbsp ghee, melted (28 g/ 1 oz)
  • 1/2 cup lukewarm water (120 ml/ 4 fl oz)

Note for eggs: you will need 4 egg yolks and 6 egg whites in total

Dry ingredients:

The reason you shouldn't use only whole eggs is that the buns wouldn't rise with so many egg yolks in. Don't waste the egg yolks - use them for making Home-made Mayo, Easy Hollandaise Sauce, Frozen Fat Bomb, Smoothies, Keto Coffee or Lemon Curd.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 175 °C/ 350 °F. For a recipe of 10-12 servings, line a large loaf pan (7 x 4.5 inch / 12 x 18 cm) with baking paper. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. Place the egg whites (6 egg whites in total) in a bowl and keep for later.
    Mix the egg yolks (4 egg yolks in total - reserve 2 for another recipe) with the toasted sesame oil and melted ghee or butter. Pour the water into the egg yolk mixture and mix well.
    Don't waste the 2 leftover egg yolks - use them for making Home-made Mayo, Easy Hollandaise Sauce, Frozen Fat Bomb, Smoothies, Keto Coffee or Lemon Curd. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  2. Beat the egg whites until they create soft - but not stiff - peaks. Add the cream of tartar while beating. Adding cream of tartar directly to the egg whites will help them stay fluffy. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the flax meal, psyllium husk powder, baking soda, caraway seeds and salt.
    Do not use whole psyllium husks - if you cannot find psyllium husk powder, use a blender or coffee grinder and process until fine. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  4. Using an electric mixer, add the egg yolk mixture to the bowl with the dry ingredients and process well. Immediately after you pour in the egg yolk mixture, add a quarter of the soft whipped egg whites to lighten up while mixing. Then add the remaining egg whites and slowly mix in.
    If you wait for too long the dough will clump up. You don't need to be too gentle while stirring but try not to deflate the egg whites completely. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  5. Add the sunflower seeds and fold them in the dough. Fill the loaf pan with the dough and transfer into the oven. Bake for about an hour. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  6. When done, remove from the oven. If you used a regular loaf pan with baking paper, remove from the loaf pan grabbing it by the baking paper. Be careful not to get burnt. This will help avoid too much moisture on the outsides of the loaf. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread
  7. Let it cool down on a cooling tray for at least 15-20 minutes. Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread Try toasting it and eat with grass-fed butter, cream cheese or homemade sugar-free jam. Keep at room temperature covered with a kitchen towel for up to 3 days or place in a zip-lock bag and freeze for longer Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread Apart from Sunflower bread, make sure you also check out my other low-carb bread recipes on my blog and in my Apps and Cookbook! Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread

Troubleshooting

The colour will vary based on ingredients. This is a photo I took for the KetoDiet Cookbook and it looks slightly different than the loaf I made week ago. Depending on the ingredients and sometimes even brands, the colour of your bread will either be light or dark brown (e.g. brown flax vs golden flax). If the bread turns out purple, it's due to the psyllium husk powder. Whenever I use Now Foods psyllium powder, the bread is always perfect, light brown. I sometimes use whole psyllium husks which I "powder" myself in a food processor.

Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread

Make sure you follow the recipe step by step. A small change can result in lumpy texture or dough that is too moist. For example, if you don't add the water into the egg yolks but separately after you mix in the egg yolks, the texture gets lumpy and rubbery. Over-processing the dough can also result in lumpy/rubbery texture.

Also, make sure you use a kitchen scale for measuring all the dry ingredients. Using just cups may not be enough to achieve best results, especially in baked goods. Weights per cups and tablespoons may vary depending on the product/ brand or if you make you own ingredients (e.g. flax meal from flaxseeds).

Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread

If your bread turns out vibrant green don't panic. Sunflower seeds contain chlorogenic acid, an antioxidant that gives the seeds the ability of turning green under certain conditions. When chlorogenic acid mixes with alkaline baking ingredients such as baking soda, it turns green. Chlorogenic acid may also slow the release of glucose into the bloodstream after a meal. The reason why this bread turned green is that I didn't use cream of tartar to neutralise the effect of the baking soda. To avoid the green effect in recipes that use baking soda and sunflower seeds or butter, add and ingredient to counteract the alkalinity of the dough. For every teaspoon of baking soda, add two teaspoons of cream of tartar, 1-2 tablespoons of vinegar or a squeeze of lemon juice.

The green colour can be very useful for when you want to use natural food colouring for events like Halloween, Easter or St. Patrick's Day ;-)

Fluffy Grain-Free Sunflower Bread

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Martina Slajerova
Creator of KetoDietApp.com

Martina Slajerova

I changed the way I ate in 2011, when I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid. I had no energy, and I found it more and more difficult to maintain a healthy weight.

That’s when I decided to quit sugar, grains, and processed foods, and to start following a whole-foods-based ketogenic approach to food.

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Comments (146)

Where do you find a bread pan of this size?  I've tried the bread but it only rose about 2 inches because I was using a 9x4.5 in. pan.  I liked the texture but wish I had the right size pan so it would rise more.

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Hi Kathleen, I got this pan from a local store (Sainsbury's). It is slightly shorter although it is also a bit taller than my other pan. I'm not at home now so I can't measure it but if I had to guess, it looks like this one: Amazon link
The bread can be made in any pan but ideally avoid silicone as it should be firm so it can hold the shape.

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I just made this bread and omg its delicious! i had no problems with it rising and staying like that even after cooling. Thank you so much for this delicious bread!.  and i plan to try more of your recipes.  

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Thank you so much, I'm glad you enjoyed!

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Hello, I just had to comment! I just made this bread and I followed your instructions to the letter. It is so awesome! It did turn out really really dark brown unlike yours which is light brown. This is so odd because I used golden flax meal instead of dark brown.  Other than that I used every ingredient you did. Any idea why this happened?  I was also wondering if you thought pasteurized organic egg whites in the carton would work or do they need to be freshly separated?
I’ve tried a few of your recipes now (The tortilla chips/wrap/pizza crust recipe is THE BOMB!!!).  I can’t wait to work my way through this site and I’m recommending it to all my friends. Keep up the good work please 🙏🏼 Martina. Cheers!

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Thank you for your lovely feedback! I'm not sure about this bread but I know some of my readers tried carton egg whites in this recipe and it worked just fine: Ultimate Keto Buns 😊
I think the dark colour could also be caused by psyllium powder. Some of the powdered brands do result in darker colour. I used psyllium husks that I powdered in a food processor and it is very light in colour. I hope this helps!

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I made this today. Followed the receipe exactly and I can't thank you enough! It came out so good. It has an almost rye bread taste! My only mistake is i didnt mix the dry enough with the egg whites so the arent completely incoporated but still so delicious. Thank you so much!!

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Thank you so much Stephanie, I'm glad you enjoyed!

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I am eating your bread right now... it is divine. It is still warm. I have had one slice with butter and one slice with your raspberry balsamic vinegar chia jam. Oh my gosh - I am in danger of scoffing the whole loaf.... Thanks so much for the recipe!
I used olive oil instead of sesame and half fennel seeds and half caraway seeds and apple cider vinegar in the egg whites.
It is fluffy, does not taste of eggs and although it slumped when out of the oven, it is still fluffy and risen.
It is far and away the best keto bread I have tried. I am going to make buns with it next time. Imagine........ seed bun with salad or burgers or scrambled eggs mmmmmm the possibilities are endless.
Yet again you are a winner!!!

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Lyn, thank you for your kind words!

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Can the toasted sesame oil be replaced with olive oil?

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Absolutely! It's only used for the rustic-bread flavour so it's not essential.

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I just made this bread and it turned out great (and I’m not a great baker). It is so savory and great with butter! I made a couple of changes. I cut the caraway seeds in half and replaced the half with cumin which I love. I also used pumpkin seeds because I was out of sunflower seeds. My bread pan is a little larger so the slices are not as tall as a regular loaf of bread but definitely rose and is not flat. Great bread texture but substantial. Does not taste eggy! Thanks for your hard work and sharing your recipes!

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Thank you so much Kelli - I love the addition of cumin seeds!

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I made your bread this morning, and since my pan was larger than yours I cooked it for 45 min & then tested it - since it came out clean I removed it to cool. But as it cooled it sank :-(
Any ideas ?
Cook it longer ?
Thanks,
Patty

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I'm sorry to hear that, Patty. I never had any issues with it, apart from some of the first attempts before fine-tuning the recipe. There are some tips in the comments below and also in the troubleshooting part of this recipe: Low-Carb & Paleo Bread - The Ultimate Guide (not the same recipe but same rules apply). I hope this helps!

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Can I swap for pumpkin seeds? Have them on hand. Would like to use them up.

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I think that's a great swap, and they are high in magnesium!

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This was really good - it's really the first time I've managed to get a proper rise on the bread, without it quickly falling away again when it comes out of the oven. The crumb was light, soft and airy and texturally, this was the best non-wheat flour bread I've made. - so thanks for this recipe!! It's been a long road to get to this point, which was quite frustrating because I did get quite good at baking sourdough (wheat flour) loafs pre-keto.
I'll definitely make this again but will make a few tweaks. The major one being that I feel like 1 tbsp of caraway seeds is way too much. It didn't ruin the loaf, still perfectly enjoyable, but the taste of caraway seeds is quite overpowering. Is the strong flavour to mask the potentially eggy flavour of the bread, that might come from using so many eggs?  I ask so that I know how to tweak the flavour in the future.
I'm guessing the sheer number of eggs is to raise the protein level, so the bread can hold it's height when risen - is that right?  If so, could some of the eggs be replaced with Whey Protein powder?   And in a more general sense, what are the key ingredients/techniques here that cause the bread to rise and hold it's shape when out of the oven?

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Thank you for your kind words, David! Speaking of sourdough, you may like this recipe: Sourdough Keto Baguettes
I agree on the caraway, it is a matter of personal preference. I use it a lot because it reminds me of the bread I used to enjoy as a kid. I don't use it to mask the flavour but now that you said it I never made this bread "plain". I sometimes swap it with cumin, onion powder or dried herbs and other spices. The options are endless!
The eggs are used for texture, especially the egg whites which make it rise and keep it fluffy. I'm not sure how whey protein powder would work as a substitute but I don't think it will have the same effects. Here's a recipe that uses mostly this ingredient: Keto & Primal Soul Bread
What causes a keto bread to rise are egg whites, psyllium, baking powder and also flax meal as it helps with the texture. I've also recently been experimenting with nutritional yeast and will report back as soon as I have some satisfactory results 😊

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The sunflower seeds turning green is why I looked up this recipe on your blog (saw it on Facebook).  When I first made this type of bread, mine turned green, and not only that, but it had an ammonia-like taste.  Thank you for the solution.  I'm now brave enough to make this bread for my guests tomorrow!

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Thank you for your kind words! I hope it turns out great! 😊

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The texture of the bread was great and it turned out perfectly. I was a little worried it would be too hard but it was easy.
Mine was far too salty for my taste though. Next time I make it I will use just a pinch of salt. Or maybe half the amount of cream of tartar. Do you think it could be that giving it the off salty taste?

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Hi Laura, I'd reduce the salt - that is definitely where it comes from, not the cream of tartar because that may negatively affect the texture. I hope this helps!

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Made this today … you cannot imagine how awesome I felt taking a bite of real good bread again! It tastes great and turned out perfect! Caraway seeds make all the difference!  
Thank you so much for this recipe!

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Mo, thank you for your lovely feedback!

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This bread is fantastic x I can't get caraway seeds here so used fennel seeds instead and the flavour was lovely. I've made this twice the first time it didn't rise very much at all ( but was still lovely) I wondered if it was the size of the eggs, they weigh about 57g each (including shell) but have large yolks so egg white is only about 30g. When I searched on internet it said a large egg would be about 40g egg white and 20g yolk so I figured I was 10g short on each white, equal to 60g total, so I added 2 extra egg whites for the second loaf and it rose much better. Don't know if it was just coincidence or if it was the extra egg whites. Would be interested to know the weight of the egg whites you use.

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Thank you Donna! I love the idea of using fennel seeds - I've never thought of that!
Sometimes it's the psyllium. I bough powdered psyllium husks a while ago and any bread I made with it turned dense and purple. I always get best results with whole psyllium husks that I "powder" myself in a blender. But if in both cases I assume you used the same psyllium powder. Then it might be the eggs - I can't think of anything else. I hope this helps!

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Unfortunately, my bread did not rise. After watching the video and reading the comments, I know what I might have done wrong. The bread did taste very yummy but it came out almost like a dark purple/black color. Do you have any idea why that happened? Thanks

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Hi Nicole, this is most definitely the psyllium powder. Actually it happened to me just a few weeks ago when I tried another brand of psyllium powder. I prefer to use whole husks and "powder" them myself. This way the powder is light and fluffy, not too dense (see my comment above). I hope this helps!

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It came out flat. I weight in everything perfectly and dint overwork the dough. Any advice on how to make it rise?

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I'm sorry to hear that, Jasmine. There are some comments that might help below.

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Thank you for this recipe! The bread is so good that it just upped my keto game. I can’t believe I can finally have sandwiches on a keto diet! I must say, even my kids loved it. This is how good your recipe is. I can’t thank you enough!

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Thank you for your lovely feedback!

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I'm really excited to make this bread! But unfourtunately I can't find caraway seed where I live. Would leaving this out affect the bread texture? Or could you please suggest me a repplacement?
Thank you so much for all the great recipes 😊

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Not at all! These are only used for flavour. You can use sesame seeds, herbs or spices - the options are endless 😊

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Absolutely did not raise up. Looked like flat piece of meat loaf. I see nothing in the recipe that will make it raise. I weighed every thing and was careful folding in the egg whites. The picture looks nothing like how the bread turns out. The picture looks like you used yeast to make it rise. Waisted my money on this recipe.

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As much as I feel your frustration, I find your comment rude, especially since you're implying that I used yeast to "make it rise". But who knows, I may have faked the video recipe 😉 To me it simply sounds like you over-processed the dough. You could have just read the comments in this post. You're welcome.

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Is there another oil to substitute for sesame?  I'm very allergic to sesame.
Thanks!

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Olive oil or more ghee will work just fine!

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Hi. I just tried baking a loaf yesterday using your recipe. But the bread cake out dense and heavy, unlike your light and fluffy  ☹️ What did I do wrong?

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Hi Cheryl, it could be over mixing or not enough water (maybe too much flax meal or psyllium). Have you weighed the dry ingredients? Just a tablespoon more could make a difference and "cups" are not completely reliable as the weight can vary in different brands.

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I made this bread, and measured by weight, not volume, and it did not turn out at all like pictured. I used 80g of psyllium husk powder and 40g of flax meal. The bread came out about three quarters cooked eggs white, and the flax meal and psyllium powder just sprinkled in. 40 grams weighs almost nothing. I am thinking that one is actually supposed to put far more than 40 and 80 grams of the dry ingredients into the bread.

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I'm sorry to hear that but I'm not sure why that happened :-( The grams are correct, I weigh all dry ingredients and made this bread several times. Could it be that you used extra large eggs and there were more egg whites?

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Could I use all egg whites in this recipe?

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You could try that but I think you will need to use more water and/or ghee. I can't guarantee the results will be the same as I haven't tried it 😊

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Mila Martino, moc Vam dekuji za Vase recepty a vubec za cely Vas web. Zrovna tenhle chlebik je opravdu nejlepsi ze vsech, ktere jsem zatim pekla a chutna i kamaradkam, ktere ani keto neznaji. Jsem nadsena, ze jste udelala takovouhle diru do sveta a preju mnoho dalsich uspechu. Srdecne zdravim

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Moc Vam Libo, jsem rada ze chutna!! 😊

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Looks good. Can you use another ingredient besides ground flax seed?
Thanks.

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I haven't tried an alternative in this recipe so it would be just guessing. You can try other bread recipes - many of them do not use flax: ketodietapp.com/Blog/Filter
I hope this helps! 😊

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