Soft and Fluffy Sandwich Bread — This sandwich bread is soft, fluffy, light, and moist. It’s made with a secret ingredient that keeps it moist and fluffy — oatmeal! It’s the perfect bread for a PB&J or grilled cheese sandwich!
Easy Sandwich Bread Recipe
I realized I didn’t have a recipe for classic sandwich bread on my site. Not that I eat that many sandwiches, but I may start after tasting this bread.
This homemade sandwich bread is soft, fluffy, and light. It’s made with a secret ingredient that keeps it moist and fluffy: a cup of oatmeal is kneaded into the dough, which also lends a bit of chewiness and texture. When you bite into the finished bread, you definitely don’t think, oh there’s oatmeal in here. It’s a stealth operator ingredient.
It’s the homemade, healthier, vegan version of white Wonder bread. I’ve never been a crusty baguette person. Give me soft and tender over jaw-ripping crustiness any day.
This easy white bread recipe makes one modest loaf, perfect for our family, and uses just 2 cups of flour for the entire loaf. Sometimes I read bread and roll recipes and they start off with ‘Add 5 to 6 cups of flour’. Gulp. We don’t need that much bread at once.
It’s so soft and fluffy, with a slight chewiness, thanks to the oatmeal. You’d never know oatmeal was the secret ingredient and even when mixing the dough, you’ll think there’s no way this whole cup of sloppy oatmeal is going to just disappear, but it magically does.
It would make great French toast or grilled cheese. It’s wonderful toasted and with butter, jam, or honey. I made BLT’s minus the bacon and used cheese, and they were met with rave reviews.
Up next, using it for a homemade peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
What’s in Sandwich Bread?
To make this soft and fluffy bread recipe, you’ll need:
- Old-fashioned oats
- All-purpose flour
- Canola oil
- Light brown sugar
- Instant dry yeast
How to Make Sandwich Bread
Begin by boiling water, pouring it over oats, and let the mixture come to room temperature, about 15 minutes. I urge you to use a thermometer. You don’t want to add overly hot oatmeal to the yeast because you’ll kill it. Yet it has to be warm enough so the yeast activates. For me, this is in the 130F range because I used Red Star Platinum yeast. The brand of yeast used dictates the temperature.
Add the warm oatmeal to a mixing bowl containing all-purpose flour, yeast, brown sugar, oil, and a splash of water. I allowed my stand mixer to knead it for about 6 minutes, and if you’re kneading by hand, knead for 10 minutes, or until it comes together, adding as little additional flour as possible.
After kneading, place the dough into a greased bowl, cover it, and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 90 minutes, or until doubled in size. Create a warm environment by preheating your oven for 1 to 2 minutes to 400F, then shutting it off. This creates a 90F-ish warm spot.
Slide the bowl in and wait while the yeast works. Just make sure your oven is off.
After the dough has doubled, punch it down, turn it out onto a floured surface or Silpat and knead it for about 3 minutes. With your fingers, shape it into a 10-inch by 6-inch rectangle, just eyeball it. It’s being baked in an 8-by-4-inch pan and you want the long side slightly longer than the pan, about 10 inches.
Fold the short sides in so the dough is about 8 inches in length, and roll to form a tight cylinder. There’s not much to roll, about 3 turns.
Place the cylinder in the pan, cover it, and allow it to rise until doubled, 60 to 75 minutes. Optionally, when rolling it, sprinkle with cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger. Or go savory with dill, chives, or thyme.
Bake it for about 30 minutes or until domed, golden, and puffy. When tapped, it should sound hollow.
Technically, the internal temperature should reach 210F, but I have issues stabbing my beautiful bread with the long, dagger-like spear of the thermometer, so I rarely do this unless I’m very uncertain and rely on visual cues and tapping.
Because the cooling process is actually part of the cooking process with bread-making, let the bread cool completely before slicing into it, tempting as it is to tear into it asap.
How to Store Sandwich Bread
I store homemade sandwich bread by wrapping a fully cooled loaf in plastic wrap, and then I place it inside a gallon-size Ziplock, where it stays fresh for about 5 days.
Can I Freeze Sandwich Bread?
Yes, this easy white bread freezes very well and can be made from start to finish, cooled, and placed in a freezer-safe airtight container or a ziplock for up to 3 months.
Can I Make This In a Bread Machine?
I don’t know because I don’t have one and have never tried.
Do I Have to Use All-Purpose Flour?
I used all-purpose flour because I wanted really soft bread. Bread flour will produce a loaf that’s chewier. I don’t know how whole wheat flour would work. If you try it, I suggest not using more than 1 cup (50% of the total amount). I fear it won’t rise well and could get very heavy and dense.
Can I Use Gluten-Free Flour?
I haven’t tried this soft sandwich bread recipe with gluten-free flour so I cannot comment or make recommendations. I’ve never baked homemade yeast bread with gluten-free flour, so it’s out of my wheelhouse entirely. I’d use your favorite blend and hope for the best!
Do I Have To Use Instant Yeast?
I have only made this recipe using the yeast mentioned and haven’t tried it with other forms of yeast. I can’t speak to your results if you use active dry yeast that’s not labeled as instant.
I use this instant yeast with great results.
Tips for Making Fluffy Sandwich Bread
This is a fairly moist and sticky dough, but manageable. With bread-making, the less flour added, and the more you tolerate sticky dough, the lighter and fluffier the bread will be. Sure, I could have added another half-cup or more of flour, but refrained and dealt with the stickiness. And I have a light, fluffy loaf in return.
If your sandwich bread doesn’t rise properly, it could be because your yeast wasn’t fresh or you killed the yeast by adding too hot of water to it.
It’s vital that you let the bread cool completely before slicing into it, otherwise you may flatten the bread when you try to slice into it.
Pin This Recipe
- 1 cup boiling water
- 1 cup old-fashioned whole rolled oats (not quick cook or instant)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (bread flour may be used and will create a heartier, chewier bread)
- 1/4 cup water (from the tap, not hot and not cold)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
- 2 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast (one 1/4-ounce packet, I use Red Star Platinum
- pinch salt, optional and to taste
- In a small bowl, pour boiling water over oatmeal, stir to combine. Set aside and let cool until temperature reaches about 130F, about 15 minutes. (I use Red Star Platinum Yeast which necessitates this temperature; allow mixture to cool to the ~100F range for other types of instant dry yeast, or to package directions).
- To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook (or a large mixing bowl and knead by hand for about 10 minutes), combine flour, 1/4 cup water, oil, brown sugar, instant dry yeast, and cooled oatmeal.
- Knead for 5 to 7 minutes on low speed, or until a moist, shaggy dough forms. The dough is fairly moist and sticky, but resist the temptation to add additional flour, unless it's so moist that it won't combine. Conversely, if it's too dry, add up to one-quarter cup water. Erring on the side of too moist is always preferable to dry in bread-making.
- After kneading, turn the dough out into a large, greased bowl, cover with plasticwrap, and let it rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 90 minutes, or until doubled in size. Create a warm environment by preheating your oven for 1 to 2 minutes to 400F, then shutting it off. This creates a 90F-ish warm spot. Slide the bowl in and wait while the yeast works. Just make sure your oven is off.
- After the dough has doubled, punch it down, turn it out onto a floured surface or Silpat and knead it for about 3 minutes. With your fingers, shape it into a 10-inch by 6-inch rectangle, just eyeball it. The long side should be slightly longer than the baking pan. Then, fold the short sides in so that dough is about 8 inches in length. Roll to form a tight cylinder. There's not much to roll, about 3 turns. Optionally, when rolling, sprinkle with cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger. Or go savory with dill, chives, or thyme.
- Spray an 8-by-4-inch loaf pan with floured cooking spray (or grease and flour the pan) and place the cylinder in the pan, seam side down. Cover with plasticwrap, and allow dough to rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled, about 60 to 75 minutes.
- In the last minutes of rising, preheat oven to 350F. Bake for about 30 minutes or until domed, golden, and puffy. When tapped, it should sound hollow. The internal temperature should reach 210F. Let bread cool in pan for 5 to 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.
- I store bread by wrapping a fully cooled loaf in plasticwrap, and place it inside a gallon-size Ziplock, where it stays fresh for about 5 days.
- Bread freezes very well and can be made from start to finish, cooled, and placed in a freezer-safe airtight container or a ziplock for up to 3 months.
- I like this bread toasted and with butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon-sugar or Cinnamon-Sugar Butter. It makes great Grilled Cheese, French Toast, and Homemade Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 172Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 14mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 3g
More Easy Bread Recipes:
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Overnight Cinnamon Rolls — These overnight cinnamon rolls are ultra soft and fluffy thanks to the buttermilk in the dough. Top them with homemade cream cheese frosting and enjoy!
Easy Cheddar Sourdough Bread — Unlike most sourdough recipes that require a starter and weeks to complete, this recipe requires neither. The sourdough taste comes from a combination of Greek yogurt and sour cream that ferments the dough rather than using a starter.
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Cinnamon Swirl Bread – As close to cinnamon buns as bread gets. Filled with a sweet cinnamon-sugar butter mixture that’s swirled throughout, this is a tender, buttery, sweet loaf that novice bread-makers can successfully tackle
Honey Dinner Rolls — My favorite dinner roll recipe, lightly sweetened with honey, soft and chewy. A family favorite and a very goof-proof yeast recipe because this dough loves to rise
Originally published April 9, 2013 and republished May 16, 2020 with updated text.