Easy Gluten Free Sourdough Pumpernickel Bread (No Mixer Required)

While pumpernickel bread is usually made from rye flour, this gluten free sourdough pumpernickel bread recipe uses buckwheat flour among others. Rather than making a time-consuming sourdough starter, I created an easier and lighter sourdough flavor.

Check out the video here.

Easy Gluten Free Sourdough Pumpernickel Bread (No Mixer Required)

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 13 hours, 20 minutes

Easy Gluten Free Sourdough Pumpernickel Bread (No Mixer Required)

A true pumpernickel bread begins with a sourdough. This is an easy way to achieve a little of that sourdough flavor in a gluten free version.


  • 1/3 cup unsulphurated molasses
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup neutral-flavored oil (extra-light olive, avocado, grape, canola)
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2/3 cups milk (cow, rice, etc.), heated to 105 -115°F (no higher) (I used non-fat)
  • 1 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup potato starch*
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch* (Bob's Red Mill cornstarch is non-GMO.) (or more potato starch)
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour (or brown rice flour*)
  • 1/3 cup fava bean flour
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened gluten free cocoa powder (Hershey's or Ghirardelli Natural)
  • 1 tablespoon caraway seeds
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons guar gum (or xanthan gum)
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (or more guar gum for corn-free)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds for the top (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds, for the top (optional)


  1. In a large bowl, (or the bowl of your stand mixer) whisk together the molasses, oil, egg whites, whole egg, and vinegar. Slowly whisk in the warm milk; set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (buckwheat flour, potato starch, cornstarch, sorghum flour, guar gum, cocoa powder, caraway seeds, xanthan gum, and salt.
  3. Add the dry ingredients one-third at a time, whisking to combine thoroughly after addition.  (If using a mixer, add all at once and blend on medium speed for 3 minutes.)
  4. Loosely cover and refrigerate the dough overnight, at least 12 hours, up to three days. The longer it rests in the refrigerator, the more the flavor develops.
  5. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 170 - 200ºF. Oil a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
  6. Scoop the dough into the prepared pan and smooth out the top using a few sprinkles of water and a silicone spatula. If adding seeds to the top, sprinkle them over the dough. Then, using moistened fingertips, pat the seeds into the dough.
  7. Turn the oven off and leave the oven door open for about 30 seconds to lower the temperature. (Ideally, you want the dough to rise at about 80ºF, but definitely under 115ºF. Allow the dough to rise until it reaches 1/2-inch over the top of the pan's rim, about 30 minutes.
  8. Remove the dough from the oven and preheat to 375ºF.
  9. Place the bread on the center rack and bake for 10 minutes. Cover with aluminum foil (add parchment paper between the bread and foil to prevent aluminum for leaching into your bread). Bake an additional 50 minutes.
  10. Remove the loaf from the oven; immediately remove it from the pan and set the loaf on a cooling rack to cool completely. (Slicing too early results in gummy bread.)
  11. Slice with an electric slicer, electric knife, or serrated knife. Freeze any slices that will not be consumed within 24 hours.


*The bread in the photo contains brown rice flour instead of sorghum flour. I used it just because I have had so much left over from one of my clients. However, I enjoy the texture of sorghum flour much more. Rice flour is a bit sticky.

7 Replies to “Easy Gluten Free Sourdough Pumpernickel Bread (No Mixer Required)”

    1. Angela,

      While I haven’t tried a substitute in this recipe, you always want to use equal weight and similar nutritional values of any flour. You’ll find the weight of buckwheat flour and blonde buckwheat flour in the Weight Conversion chart at https://glutenfreerecipebox.com/gluten-free-flour-conversion-chart/. The weights in this chart are based upon how I weigh ingredients (spooning into dry measuring cups and leveling off and never shaking or compacting the flour, which results in unnecessary additional flour). However, every time you weigh that same flour, you it will result in a different amount. That is why I always suggest weighing your ingredients the first time you make a recipe so that you can make it the same way the next time.

      With that said, I would try equal weight of sorghum flour in your recipe. However, it may turn out a little chewier. Let me know how you it goes if you try it.


  1. This bread is amazing. The texture is wonderful and so bread like…and the taste..wow! You’ll be blown away by their bread. No one can tell it’s gluten free. I am so grateful to have come across Carla’s recipes. You won’t be disappointed when making her breads!
    Note: I did leave the dough in the fridge for 4 days (not 3 as per the recipe) it turned out brilliantly and so flavourful

  2. Oh boy!!!! I can hardly wait to try this. I love good bread but, have an autoimmune reaction to gluten…I’m beginning to salivate.

    1. Any bean flour provides lift/raises the dough and a bit of sticky/moist texture. You can sub with a different bean flour such as garbanzo bean flour if you desire, but I don’t like the taste of it myself. If you are bean intolerant, try adding an additional egg white plus a quarter cup of cornstarch or tapioca flour. Let me know how it goes.


      1. Hi Teri,

        Use the been liquid exactly as you would the eggs. It beats up just like egg white. So, you would follow the instructions just as they are., adding the 3 tablespoons margarine to the other margarine.

        In addition, since you will lose the egg yolks color, add a pinch of turmeric.

        Enjoy and thanks for your question!


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