Skip to Content

Simple Rustic Loaf Bread Recipe

Simple Rustic Loaf is a beautiful loaf of bread that is easy to make and will leave you amazed that it came from your kitchen and not the bakery.

Top-down view of a round loaf of bread with two slices cut from the front and buttered sitting over a wooden cutting board.

This Simple Rustic Loaf is a part of last year’s goals and a big part of this years goals. Had I known how delicious it is, I wouldn’t have waited so long!

Have you started your new year with a set of goals that you’d like to accomplish? I have, and even though they are probably modest compared to a lot of goals, I’m excited to get a start on them!

A loaf of bread with the first slice sitting in the front that\'s been buttered.

Last year one of my goals was to learn more about baking bread. I joined several bread groups to push myself to try more recipes that I normally wouldn’t have attempted or even heard about without these groups.

A loaf of bread with the first two slices sitting in the front that\'s been buttered.
A loaf of bread with the first slice removed showing a soft center.

This month’s challenge was to use a flour that we’d never worked with. I chose pumpernickel.

To tell you the truth, this recipe actually used very little pumpernickel flour, and I learned that there are a lot of pumpernickel recipes that use a combination of flours such as wheat and rye flour.

I just loved how this bread came out. It has a wonderful artisan crust and the crumb is so soft and moist. This bread is easy to make, and I think you will be surprised that such a pretty loaf of bread can come from your oven.

Bread can be pretty right?

You will want to start this recipe either early in the day or even the day before which is what I did because it has you make a sponge that needs to sit out on the counter for at least 4 hours.

What is a sponge?

I left mine out overnight and baked my bread the next day. Don’t let the sponge scare you. It’s just a flour yeast mixture that is allowed to sit out and will help the flavor of your bread develop. This picture is of my sponge after it sat overnight. All bubbly and ready to do its job.

Bubbly bread starter.

You will also note that I suggest you use filtered or spring water. That’s because chlorine can have an adverse effect on yeast. So, if your water is chlorinated, use bottled or filtered water.

Others say if you can drink it you can bake with it. You be the judge.

Simple Rustic Loaf is a beautiful loaf of bread that is easy to make and will leave you amazed that it came from your kitchen and not the bakery

A Simple Rustic Loaf

Author: Hostess At Heart
A Simple Rustic Loaf is a beautiful loaf of bread that is easy to make and will leave you amazed that it came from your kitchen and not the bakery.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Proof times 3 hours
Total Time 4 hours
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Keyword: Homemade Rustic Bread, Rustic Loaf
Servings: 16 slices



  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour I use unbleached
  • 1/2 cup pumpernickel flour



To make the sponge

  • Mix the sponge ingredients together. Cover and let it sit at room temperature 3 to 4 hours or overnight.


  • Stir down the sponge. In a large bowl, combine dough ingredients and the sponge. Knead until smooth and elastic. Knead in the Harvest Grains blend or your choice of seeds. Form a ball and put it into a large well oiled bowl. Turn once to coat both sides. Cover and allow to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • Lightly grease a baking sheet, or cover it with parchment paper. Turn out the dough out onto the baking sheet, and form it into a ball. Cover and allow it to rise for 1 more hour. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  • Gently but firmly slash the dough across the top and then spritz it with water. Bake the bread for 30 to 35 minutes, until it’s a deep golden brown. Remove from the pan and allow the loaf to cool completely on a cooling rack prior to slicing.


Recipe originated by King Arthur Flour


Serving: 1gCalories: 119kcalCarbohydrates: 25gProtein: 3gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 293mgPotassium: 46mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gCalcium: 6mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.

Tried this recipe?Let me know how it was!

Our monthly bread baking party is no longer active, but you can still enjoy many of their recipes as I do!

60% Kamut Sourdough Bread from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
Coconut Flour Zucchini Bread from CulturEatz
Rustic Loaf using Pumpernickel Flour from Hostess At Heart

Did you enjoy this recipe? Don’t forget to pin it for later and follow me on Pinterest for more delicious recipes like this one!

A loaf of bread with the first two slices sitting in the front that\'s been buttered.
5 from 1 vote
Recipe Rating

Rye Soda Bread - Savoring Italy

Wednesday 29th of November 2023

[…] Rustic Loaf using Pumpernickel Flour from Hostess At Heart […]

Sally T

Saturday 30th of May 2020

Is it just me or does homemade bread make everything better? We would love this bread!

Shari Kelley

Monday 18th of January 2016

This just looks perfect! I love how rustic it looks on the outside and how soft and tender on the inside. I have a question. Where do you purchase your flours like the pumpernickel and the King Arthur one. Do you have to order it online? I haven't made bread so was wondering about this. I would love to try it. I've had so many recipe fails lately, though, that maybe I should wait awhile! :(

Julie Menghini

Monday 18th of January 2016

Thanks Shari, it really is soft and made great toast. I think next time I would mix the spelt with bread flour at maybe a 30/70 ratio to see if I can get it to hold the raise a bit more. Either that or raise the spelt only once for 30 minutes, because I did like the flavor. I know about the fails, seems like they group themselves together for some reason. Very frustrating! I did buy my pumpernickel and rye flour directly from King Arthur They also have a seed/grain mix that I love and I put it in a wheat bread recipe that I make regularly. I bought my spelt in my grocery store in the health market area. I believe it's Bob's Red Mill flour.

Christine | Mid-Life Croissant

Thursday 14th of January 2016

Baking bread from scratch is one of my goals for this year. I have NEVER done it even though I've had packets of yeast sitting in my cupboard for at least six months. Does yeast go bad? I better hop to it! Happy 2016 Julie and thanks for linking up at #SaucySaturdays!!

Julie Menghini

Thursday 14th of January 2016

Good for you Christine, let me know if you have any questions. Your yeast has a expiration date on it. I'd replace it if that date is long gone but chances are it's still fine.


Wednesday 13th of January 2016

Julie, all that hard work has really paid off! Another absolutely gorge loaf!! Thanks for linking up to Throwback Thursdays!

As Seen On