Fermented Buckwheat Bread

Fermented Buckwheat Bread

One of the greatest things I discovered after adopting plant-based diet was raw buckwheat – you can make boiled porridge, raw buckwheat porridge or ricotta, ricotta creams for cakes or to eat as is; to make cookies and pancakes, use soaked groats for buckwheat muffins and cakes, just boil for side or make patties, and even make yeast-free fermented buckwheat bread.

New! Tutorial video below!

Buckwheat spread to Europe and Russia in the 14th and the 15th century from China, and the Dutch brought it to USA in the 17th century. Many of you might not know that buckwheat is actually not a grain, but a fruit seed related to rhubarb and sorrel and therefore is gluten-free and safe for those with celiac disease.

Buckwheat consists mainly of carbohydrates, but like seeds, it is also high in protein. Buckwheat is a very good source of manganese and a good source of magnesium, dietary fibre, copper, and phosphorus. Furthermore, it contains health-promoting flavonoids rutin and querceitin. Rutin functions with vitamin C to maintain healthy capillaries, to help heal wounds, to help form collagen in connective tissue, and to support a healthy immune system. Quercetin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.

Buckwheat groats have low glycemic index, meaning that unlike wheat flour, its carbohydrates break down slower, which make them more filling for a longer period of time, with less of an undesirable impact on blood glucose and insulin. Buckwheat groat protein also has a better structure than wheat protein, which has a poor amount of the amino acid lysine, with twice the amount of fibre compared to wheat.

I have made fermented buckwheat bread for two years now. I was a bit tired of rye bread and thought that it should be possible to ferment buckwheat as well. So, I started to search online (not to invent a wheel) and found a recipe by Concious Catering. After playing with the quantities and ingredients I developed my own favourite fermented buckwheat bread recipe.

Fermented Buckwheat Bread Recipe


  • 425g (15oz) raw buckwheat groats
  • 300ml or grams of water + water for soaking buckwheat
  • ½-1 tsp. sea salt or Himalayan salt
  • 2 tbsps. oregano
  • 3 handfuls of sunflower seeds


  1. Soak buckwheat groats for at least 6 hours. Rinse well and let drain for 2-5 minutes.
  2. Place drained buckwheat groats into blender with 300ml of water. Blend on low speed until smooth batter forms.
  3. Pour the batter into plastic or glass bowl (do not use metal bowl). Cover the bowl with clean cloth and place into a warm oven (35°C, 95°F).
  4. Let the batter ferment for 7 hours.
  5. After 7 hours you’ll see that the batter has risen and small bubbles have formed. If you don’t see that, let it ferment a bit longer. Now add all the other ingredients to this buckwheat bread recipe, gently and briefly stir with wooden or plastic spoon (do not use metal spoon). Do not over-mix as the batter will lose its fluffiness.

    Fermented Buckwheat Bread Batter
    Fermented Buckwheat Bread Batter
  6. Pour the batter into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Now, you can put the bread back into warm oven and let it rise for another few hours or you can bake it immediately for 1 hour at 175°C (350°F). Let the bread be in the oven while it warms up. Count the hour from when the oven has reached the right temperature.
  7. If you used parchment paper, you can remove the bread from pan immediately and place it on folded kitchen paper (I use four layers) to absorb the moistness. Let the bread cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing.

Other combinations for flavouring:

  • Olives and oregano
  • Sundried tomatoes and oregano
  • Sesame seeds and oregano
  • Walnuts, prunes, cinnamon
  • Sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, oregano
  • Raisins, cinnamon
  • Poppy seeds, goji berries


  • It is at its best when fresh.
  • Slice the leftover bread and store in freezer. Heat up in the oven or toast slices whenever needed.
  • Eat as it is or with hummus, guacamole or nut/seed spread for example.
  • Should you like more sour taste, ferment the batter for longer.

Fermented Buckwheat Bread_1026





  1. Do you think you could use oat groats in combination or instead of the buckwheat?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Noelle!

      I have never tried, but I don’t think so as oat groats are so different from buckwheat groats. Soaked buckwheat is soft and tender, whereas oats would still be quite hard (like barley or spelt). I know that rolled oats ferment as I’ve made oat yogurt, but to make the bread with oat groats would require experimenting and it’d be a totally new recipe. I’ve made quick barley bread using barley groats https://www.nutriplanet.org/2015/05/quick-barley-bread-karask-plant-based-oil-free/ Maybe you could try that, if you don’t like buckwheat.

      Happy baking and ask away, should you have any more questions!


  2. This looks amazing! There are two photos at the top that show one loaf with slices that are slightly sunken and shorter, and another that is rounded at the top and much taller – was the tall rounded one just left to rise (after adding all of the remaining ingredients) for a longer period of time before baking? If so, how long was it left to rise? I never thought that bread would rise without yeast (especially one that is gluten-free)! 🙂

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Keri!

      The photos have been taken of different batches. I think I didn’t ferment enough the one that is slightly sunk, but it was equally delicious. And I used a bit less batter for that bread, that’s why it is thinner. Sometimes the bread has a soul of its own — for example, yesterday I fermented the batter in the oven for 8 hours and did not let it sit afterwards, but baked straight away and it turned out perfectly risen. Sometimes it rises a lot after mixing in the other ingredients (I leave it for 2 hours) and sometimes not at all. You’ll have to try! And be very gentle when mixing in the ingredients. All the best!

      • I can’t wait to try it! Thank you so much for your reply!

        • Sorry, another question: after baking for 1 hour, is there any way to ensure that it is “done” inside? With some yeasted GF bread recipes, I need to use a thermometer to test the internal temperature is at least 200F – would I do the same with this recipe? Thanks again!

          • Hi again!

            No, it’ll be definitely done after 1 hour! Make sure to let it cool properly and don’t try to slice it when it’s still hot. All the best!

  3. Wei Fang Lee

    Hi,had you tried with brown rice before instead of buckwheat?Do you think can it work?

    • Nele Liivlaid


      I haven’t tried, but I don’t think so as rice is much harder after soaking, whereas buckwheat will be nice and tender, basically ready to eat. To make fermented rice bread, you’d need to use rice flour and maybe a starter, but unfortunately I don’t have a recipe for that. Sorry! All the best!

  4. Wei Fang Lee

    Thank you very much.

  5. Zoë Barefoot

    Do you think I could try this with oats?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Zoe,

      An interesting idea for sure, but I haven’t tried it with oats. However, oat groats don’t absorb water as well as buckwheat groats, so you wouldn’t get a homogeneous batter to work with.
      Should you decide to give it a go, please let me know how it turned out!

    • Zoë Barefoot

      What about rolled oats? And is the sweetener added to help with fermentation or is it just for sweetness?

  6. Zoë Barefoot

    That’s what I was thinking! I went to the market and bought buckwheat in bulk today to make the bread and then I’m going to attempt with the rolled oats 🙂 I’ve made your oat yogurt! It’s delicious I enjoy the sour taste so much I always let it sit a little longer

  7. Zoë Barefoot

    Last question I swear! Can I bake my fermented dough in a metal type bread loaf pan or does that also mess up the bread as the mixing bowl would? I made the dough with buckwheat and it fermented so well with so many bubbles 🙂

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Don’t worry! 🙂 It’s ok to use metal loaf, if you put the bread straight into oven and also use parchment paper. However, should you want to post-ferment after mixing in the herbs and seeds, it would not work. I used to bake the bread in metal loaf, but switched to ceramic one at one point and find that it’s doing a much better job.

      I’m glad your batter fermented well! It has never failed me — so easy and delicious!

  8. Zoë Barefoot

    I decided to use 3 small glass loaf pans and the batter fit into them just about to the rim. There fermenting longer as we speak thanks so much

  9. Megan.l.schofield@gmail.com

    Currently trying to ferment the batter. First timer. I didn’t realize how much the batter would expand when mixed and I didn’t have a plastic bowl big enough, so it’s currently fermenting in my warm ceramic slow cooker. Hopefully it works!!

  10. Leslie Smith

    I have had no problem getting a good ferment and smell and flavor, but after 2 attempts at this, I can’t get it to bake. Even after 2 hours in the oven. It’s like a loaf of oatmeal mush. Any thoughts?? What if I added coconut flour or some high fiber, absorbable flour? Or buckwheat flour? Thanks!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hello Leslie!

      I can’t think what must be wrong — it has worked for me every time! From what you tell me it seems that the batter must be too liquid. Are you sure you discarded the soaking water? If you take 425 grams (15oz) of raw buckwheat groats (they definitely need to be raw/unroasted, otherwise it won’t ferment), soak them in water for 6-8 hours, then rinse and drain well and blend with 300 grams (10oz) water you’ll have perfect consistency (it’s quite thick). After that ferment in 30-40 C (86-105 F) oven for 6-7 hours, mix in seeds and herbs and bake in 175 C (350 F) for 1 hour – 1 h 10 minutes. I’ve also baked it without fermenting and it works equally well.

      I hope we get to the bottom of why it didn’t work 🙂


    • same problem here tried 2 times and never cooked 🙁

      • Nele Liivlaid

        Irene and Leslie,

        I can’t figure out what might be the problem there! Good news is that the making of tutorial video is in process and I hope to publish it next week!

        Have a good day!

  11. Lennox Killner

    How can you be sure that it’s ‘yeast free’ if it’s been allowed to ferment?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Lennox!

      It is natural fermentation process without any added nutritional yeasts. The process is similar to making sauerkraut or homemade oat yogurt.

  12. its very interesting web

  13. Nele,his seemes ik super reipe! I am from Czech republic, and I am not sure whether, speaking about buckwheat groats, I can by raw buckwheat and the soak it for several hours. Because othervise, you can buy there buckwhat germs, but its sold lik superfoods for disastrous amout of money. Lastly, I bought this: https://nakup.itesco.cz/groceries/en-GB/products/2001130814124. WIll bread be ok if I make batter from this?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Karin,

      Thank you! Yes, it is totally the right product. And you could bring it to another level by soaking + sprouting the groats and then blending it into batter. I hope you’ll enjoy the bread!


  14. Hi Nele,

    I absolutely love this recipe and have been making it every week for the past 3 months.
    However i just recently made another batch and after fermentation there was a pinky tint to the top of the buckwheat batter/dough. It didn’t smell horrible so I still baked it. I’m just wondering if this has happened to you or you know what it is? (I’m a bit afraid to eat it not knowing) I’m thinking it may be the phytic acid/phytase or from what i have read. It is warming up where I live so maybe fermented to quickly?

    Thanks for your help!

    Phoebe 🙂

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Phoebe!

      I’m so glad you like the bread! I’m not 100% sure about the colour — there’s a bit pink in the raw buckwheat, but nothing too strange has caught my eye before 🙂 I ferment the batter in 35-40 degree C oven for 7 hours. If you are concerned, then maybe stick to these temperatures and timeframes and it should be ok!

      I hope I was helpful!

      All the best!


  15. Nele,
    Way easier than I thought! I wasn’t going to do the second ferment but it was already rising and looked lighter, so I did for an hour. very tasty! The first real bread I have had in months that did not taste like a shingle! I really liked the olive & Italian seasoning blend that I did in a giant mug. Today I will try the small seed loaf–pumpkin, sunflower, sesame with Italian herbs. 🙂
    Very happy I found your site. Thank you for the great recipes.

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Donna!

      I’m most delighted to hear that 🙂 You really made my day!

      It’s definitely my favourite bread as well!

      Have a great holiday season!


  16. Hello, do you think the bread would still ferment and work if I just used buckwheat flour? Thx

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Natalie!

      As long as you use raw buckwheat flour it should work. As groats absorb water, the quantities would be different. I’d say 425 grams flour and 530 grams water. Let me know how it turned out!

  17. this looks great!!
    I happen to have sprouting buckwheat at the moment, but I a sprouted whole 500g bag. I guess after soaking and sprouting they change their weight. how many sprouted buckwheat cups would you say I need for the bread? thanks a lot!

    • Nele Liivlaid



      The recipe requires 425 grams raw buckwheat groats. If you sprouted 500 grams, you only have 75 grams more, which is about 18%. So, you should also multiply the quantity of water with 1.18, i.e. 300*1.18=354 grams. Same goes for other ingredients and you’re good to go!

      Have a great Sunday!

  18. Did not work for me. Followed recipe. Bubbled and fermented. But end result was a dense brick inedible loaf that went in the trash.

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Jamie,

      That is most peculiar… For me it has worked every time — I also know many people who have made the bread for years now. Maybe you can describe exactly what you did, so that we could get to the bottom of this?

      All the best!

  19. I soaked groats 7 hrs, rinsed and drained, blender with 10oz water, into a glass bowl covered with plastic wrap, fermented for 8 hrs with lots of tiny bubbles, folded additional ingredients with plastic spoon, loaf pan with parchment paper, baked for 1hr at 350. All I know is that my loaf, although done, was like a brick. I did not over mix. I still had lots of bubbles after putting in the pan to bake. I so wanted this to work.

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Jamie,

      425 grams (15oz) raw buckwheat groats and 300 grams/ml (10.6oz) water. 10 oz is 284 grams, so a bit more water is necessary. The bread is crusty, but soft inside. The batter is pourable before and after fermentation, so I really can’t imagine what would cause it to harden that much. Make sure that the ventilator of the oven is not turned on. Although, this would just burn the bread on top and not make it brick like.

      I wish I could be more of help 🙂 I plan to produce a making-of video of this recipe, so I’m sure this would make things clearer.

  20. Mary Zdrojewski

    Hi Nele,
    My oven doesn’t go down to 86F. It can go to 200F or “Warm.” Do you think if I preheat it to 200 and then turn it off that would work?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Mary,

      I wouldn’t try that because it might be too hot and then the batter would not ferment. If you are sure it’s only warm (around 100F), then go ahead. Alternatively, you can also ferment it at room temperature — it just takes longer, about 24 hours.

      All the best!

  21. How do you get the oven to be 95F for several hours?
    I cannot leave it on – I would need to preheat and then hope that it drops to that temp…
    And the plastic wrap would melt.

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Monika,

      If your oven cannot be set at 95F, you can also ferment the batter at room temperature, but it’ll then take longer — about 24 hours (depending on the temperature). It’s done when you see it has risen a bit and there are small bubbles. Plastic does not melt at 95F.

  22. Hi Nele,

    I just found your blog a few days ago and it’s very inspiring. I’ve never made my own bread but I’m trying to be gluten-free and so I’ve decided to try and make this bread recipe. I wanted to ask two things: in the recipe you wrote the oven should be 35 degrees celsius, but my oven only starts at 50 degrees, do you think it will work anyway? Also, I didn’t understand what you meant when you wrote that the batter needs to ferment in the oven- so the oven needs to stay on for 7 hours? I just wanted to make sure but I’m trying it out anyway so I hope it will come out ok…
    Thank you for your site, it’s really great and important to have all this info and inspiration!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hello Kavita!

      Thank you for your kind words!
      50 degrees is too hot — it’d kill the fermentation process. If you can’t use your oven, just find a warm place in the kitchen. It will just take longer at room temperature — about 12-18 hours instead of 7.

      I hope it works out for you! Ask away, if you have any difficulties.

  23. I’ve made this bread 3 times now!! I’m in love! I need to try different combinations for flavoring. So far I did sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. I let me buckwheat soak for 6 hours, I drain, but not rinse them, then add the fresh water in my blender. Let ferment for 22-24 hours. Add the other ingredients, rise for another 1-2 hours and cook for 80-90 minutes at 350. Turns out perfect!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      I’m so glad to hear that Helene! 🙂 I’d recommend to rinse it though as the slimy soak water is not very good for your digestion 😉 However, if you are fine with that then who am I to stop you LOL!

      All the best!

  24. Yay, a gluten-free, vegan bread recipe, can’t wait to try!! SO glad I found your blog/website (via Facebook) Everything looks amazing!!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      I’m so glad you landed on my page and find it useful! That’s all the motivation I need for today 🙂

  25. Hi Nele, as it is winter in Perth Australia, I left the dough fermenting for nearly 24 hours, it had yellowish growth starting to happen, but didn’t smell rotten, rather a good smell. As the baking progressed, the smell of the bread from the oven I noticed is much like someone’s well worn socks, have you encountered this before? I wonder if I left the dough too long and it went bad…

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Mika!

      I don’t know what your room temperature was, but I put it into 35-40 C oven and it is ready in 6-7 hours. When you already see small bubbles, it is ready to be dealt with. If it’s warm (24-25C) then 24 hours might be too long. However, if it smelled good raw then I actually can’t see how it could smell bad baked 🙂 The safest and quickest is to turn your oven to 35C (if you can) and leave it ferment for 6-7 hours.

      I hope it will work!

  26. I tried making this but I think maybe I let it ferment too long in the “batter” stage? I did it for over 24 hours – I made it the previously day – and when I came back from work tonight to make it, the dough smelled really bad and there was a layer of white stuff on top. I ended up tossing because it smelled bad but I wondered if it was just the fermenting smell supposed to be like this? Maybe I’ll do a shorter fermentation time next time but just wondering if there’s any other tips for next time? Thanks!

    • Nele Liivlaid


      I don’t know what your room temperature was, but I put it into 35-40 C oven and it is ready in 6-7 hours. When you already see small bubbles, it is ready to be dealt with. If it’s warm (24-25C) then 24 hours might be too long. The safest and quickest is to turn your oven to 35C (if you can) and leave it ferment for 6-7 hours. The smell of fermentation is not appealing to everybody, but yes, there shouldn’t be a white layer on top.

      I hope it will work!

  27. I have tried the recipe twice and both times the loaf ends up a soggy mess. I baked it for 2 hours the second time. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Bonnie!

      I’m sorry to hear that!
      Could you tell me what you did exactly? If you follow the instruction precisely as described in the recipe (and shown in video) it should turn out. Did you batter look like I have in video?
      Did you measure 425 grams of dry raw (unroasted) buckwheat, soaked it for 6-8 hours, then rinsed and drained well, blended it with 300 grams of water and fermented covered in 35-40C oven for 7 hours?
      I hope we can figure this out!

      Do let me know!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi again Bonnie,

      I just uploaded short videos on Insta Stories of how I stir oregano into my today’s batch of fermented batter. It’ll be viewable for the next 24 hours! My Insta is @thenutriplanet

  28. It looks perfect! Can it be done with a combination of buckwheat and quinoa also?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Thank you! I haven’t tried with quinoa — I’m not sure how well it’d ferment and I guess water/grain ratio would also be different as quinoa takes in less water. So, it’s really a matter of experimenting 🙂 However, you got me curious — I might just try it out!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi again! And I decided to try it out 🙂 I’m sharing the process on my Insta stories — @thenutriplanet https://www.instagram.com/thenutriplanet/

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Ok Pascal! I did it 🙂 And it turned out perfectly. Go check my Insta account — I have a photo in my feed and the process is documented in stories!
      For the quinoa version take 325g (11.05oz) buckwheat and 100g (3.5oz) quinoa. All the rest is same! Or maybe, add just a little bit less of water (280g, 9.9oz instead of 300g,10.6oz).

  29. This bread is soo AWESOME!! I have made it three times now and I LOVE ! I made it each time with sunflower seeds and oregano! Thank you soo much for this recipe❤️

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Thank you Nathalie! 🙂 I’m so happy to hear that!
      Lately I’ve been making it quite plain, with oregano and salt only and it’s still so good 🙂

  30. Just made it today and let it ferment in my yogurt maker which turned out perfect!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      I’m so glad to hear that! 🙂 Now you made me crave some 🙂 I think I’ll just grab one slice from freezer, heat it and have with some sunflower seed butter LOL

  31. The bread is still fermenting in the oven prior to cook. But I find a good way to have the perfect temperature for the fermentation process is to put the bread in the oven and turn the oven light on. The incandescent light will produce just enough warmth. 🙂

    Thanks for the recipe: There are a lot of things I can’t eat, but buckwheat I can, and I eat a lot of it!!!

  32. My first attempt with this amazing bread came out perfectly! Thank you so much for the recipe! My oven doesn’t go any lower than 175F so I had the batter rising on top of the stove while doing other baking and it worked great. I added almonds, sunflower seeds, poppy seeds, and pumpkin seeds, no oregano or spices (although I want to try that sometime), and it is an absolutely incredible moist and delicious alternative to wheat breads. So appreciated and amazed!

    • Nele Liivlaid


      I’m so happy to hear that! Your version sounds absolutely delicious — I’ve tried with different seeds as well, but never with nuts. But the oregano one is still my favourite 🙂

      Happy New Year’s Eve!

  33. Hi there,
    I’m excited to try this recipe. I purchased Buckwheat flour by accident, can I still use it in this recipe. I don’t know if it’s raw as it doesn’t say it on the package. If I am able to use it do I soak the flour and drain just like the groats?

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi there!

      No-no, you definitely need to use raw buckwheat groats for this recipe 🙂 I have never tried it with flour and cannot tell you the exact water/flour ratio needed. You wouldn’t be able to drain soaked flour.
      You can use the flour for example in my sweet potato brownies!

  34. Hi there,
    I have tried this recipe 2 times, the bread (taste) is really fantastic. However the result after baking was always very dense bread with no bubbles (not fluffy). I let it fermented more than 7 hours (approx 12 h and it rised only little bit and almost no bubbles… the second time it was the same, so I add also my sourdough in the dought and let it fermented again, but again no bubbles and the same result). What is wrong? Put more water in the dough? Or mix it in blender shorter time? I really don’t know. I have tried two brands of buckwheat, so it is not the problem.
    Thank you.

  35. Hi Nele, yes, I used RAW groats. Hmm, so I don’t know where is the problem 🙁 There were some bubbles, but very small ones.. And it was not so fluffy as yours.

    • Nele Liivlaid


      Now it gets trickier 🙂
      Did you ferment the batter at room temperature? If so, it’d take at least 15-16 hours. If you say that there were some small bubbles, then it seems to me that the fermentation was just about to begin.

      • Yes. It can be the problem. I have quite cold temperature in my house. I will try next time to let it ferment longer. Thank you very much for your answer.

        • Nele Liivlaid

          That’s it then! It may even take longer with low temperatures. Let it sit until your batter looks like mine in the video 🙂 Let me know how it worked out!

  36. Our new favorite bread! I omitted the salt, since we don’t eat that, and added some minced fresh rosemary. I allowed the batter to ferment for much longer (nearly 24 hours) at a cooler temperature. It turned out awesome; thanks for the recipe!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Thank you Rebecca for letting me know! It makes me so happy 🙂
      Yes, it takes longer if you ferment it at a cool place. I bet fresh rosemary fits into the bread perfectly.

      I have 2 loaves fermenting as I write 🙂 Mmm, I might try the rosemary version! Tomorrow will be fresh bread day!

  37. What is if the dough goes pink on top while fermenting?

    • Nele Liivlaid


      It happens to me sometimes if I leave it for too long, but it’s ok. You need to make sure there is no mould though. The pink colour actually comes from buckwheat — the soaking water is a bit pink as well.

  38. Ronna Bulera

    I am so pleased to have found your site! It was a video on YouTube that brought me here, and I intend to begin the process of making this bread today. I am wondering if you have ever toasted the groats before proceeding with the recipe. Thanks!

    • Nele Liivlaid

      Hi Ronna!

      I’m so glad to have you here! 🙂
      Toasted groats wouldn’t ferment! Definitely use raw groats. I hope you’ll like it!

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