VEGETARIAN JOURNAL



Vegetarian Journal 2005 Issue 4

Whole Grain Vegan Quick Breads

by Peggy Rynk

Whole grain breads are one of the cornerstones of a healthy diet. They’re packed with many nutrients that we need to maintain vibrant good health, plus they’re easy to make. These breads can be made in many forms—loaves, biscuits, muffins, scones, skillet breads, crisps, crackers, pancakes, and coffeecakes, for example. They can be plain, savory, or sweet, so it’s simple to find one that’ll go with whatever else you’re serving. And because quick breads are usually a cinch to make—some are almost effortless—it’s easy to stir one up for nearly any meal.

Whole wheat is the most common whole grain flour used in breads, but there are many others to choose from, such as rye, barley, millet, rice, oat, and corn. There are also cornmeal and rolled oats. Browse the baking section of natural foods stores or supermarkets, and experiment with some of the flours you find there. Even ones you’re not familiar with can yield some terrific results and add a new dimension to your cooking repertoire. Some flours that are not grains are delights, too. Chickpea flour, for example, gives a nutty flavor to baked goods, and potato flour helps bread stay moist. None of these flours requires sifting—another plus for whole grain bread making.

If you want to adapt a non-vegan recipe, that’s usually simple to do. Vegan milks, such as soymilk, easily substitute for dairy milks in equal proportions. If a recipe calls for buttermilk, add one Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice to each cup of soymilk to be used and let it sit for a few minutes to thicken. In place of butter, use nonhydrogenated vegan margarine. In place of an egg, add two Tablespoons of cornstarch or arrowroot powder, available in natural foods stores, to the dry ingredients and two Tablespoons more liquid with the wet ingredients. Also, whole wheat flour and pastry flour substitute nicely for refined wheat flour, although they do yield a heavier product.

"Quick breads are usually a cinch to make—some are almost effortless!"

Many quick breads call for the addition of nuts, seeds, or dried fruits. If you’d prefer not to use them, just leave them out. The opposite is also true. If a recipe doesn’t require these ingredients and you want them in your recipe, don’t be afraid to put them in.

Quick breads are at their best served fresh. However, they’re also good at room temperature later on—in lunch boxes, for example. Biscuits and cornbread are good split, lightly spread with vegan margarine, then toasted. These go especially well with soups and salads.

Many vegan quick breads tend to dry out more quickly than other breads, so if you wish to keep them longer than a day or two, it’s often best to freeze them. Most quick breads freeze well. When you don’t have time to bake—or just don’t feel like cooking—you can pull home-baked bread from the freezer, let it thaw, and warm it up to give fresh feeling to your meal.

Served with fruit, vegan meat substitutes, and/or scrambled tofu, whole grain breads become a delicious part of weekday breakfast or weekend brunch. If you want a fresh-baked quick bread for breakfast—say, muffins, biscuits, or a loaf—but your time in the morning is limited, combine the dry ingredients the night before, cover them securely, and set them aside. In the morning, mix in the remaining ingredients and bake. The fragrance of baking bread helps get the day off to a happy start. For lunch and supper, sliced loaves make unforgettable toast and sandwiches, and muffins go perfectly with soups and salads. Also, they compliment just about any main course imaginable—bean dishes, casseroles, and more. They pack nicely into lunch boxes and work well as between-meal snacks, too.

A special note about muffins—if you’re not planning to serve them right away, tilt them in their cups so the bottoms won’t get soggy. Otherwise, remove them from the pan, put them in a serving basket lined with a cloth napkin or clean kitchen towel, and cover them to keep them warm.

The following pages offer a sampling of whole grain vegan quick breads using a variety of flours. Because some people are allergic to wheat, several of the recipes are wheat-free. Enjoy!


Recipe Index


Whole Wheat Raisin-Pecan Bread

(Makes 2 loaves, approximately 24 slices)

This is terrific for breakfast when spread with vegan ‘cream cheese.’ Or tuck a slice or two into lunch boxes with the ‘cream cheese’ packed separately.

1/2 cup nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, melted
3/4 cup sugar (Use your favorite vegan variety.)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup cornstarch
1-1/3 cups soymilk, divided
2 cups whole wheat flour, divided
1 cup broken pecans
1 cup dark raisins
Vegetable oil spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the margarine, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Stir in the salt and baking powder, then the cornstarch, then a little of the soymilk.

Reserve 2 Tablespoons of the flour. Blend the rest of the flour into the margarine mixture, alternating with remaining soymilk, beginning and ending with flour.

Stir the reserved 2 Tablespoons of flour into the pecans and raisins, and fold this mixture into the batter. The batter will be stiff.

Scrape batter into two 8" x 4" loaf pans prepared with vegetable oil spray. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of each loaf comes out clean. Do not overbake.

Remove loaves from oven, let cool in pans for 10 minutes, then turn loaves out onto a wire rack to cool.

Total calories per slice: 156 Fat: 8 grams
Carbohydrates: 21 grams Protein: 2 grams
Sodium: 167 milligrams Fiber: 2 grams

Boston Brown Bread

(Makes 2 loaves, approximately 24 slices)

This bread is especially good served with bean dishes, but it is also excellent warm with fruit for breakfast.

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup rye flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups soymilk
3/4 cup molasses
2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 cup dark raisins
Vegetable oil spray

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl, blend together the flours, cornmeal, baking soda, and salt. Gently blend in the soy-milk, molasses, and vinegar until well combined. Fold in raisins.

Pour batter into two oiled 8" x 4" loaf pans. Bake for 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of each loaf comes out clean. Do not overbake.

Remove from oven, let cool in pans for 10 minutes, then turn loaves out onto a wire rack to cool.

Total calories per slice: 106 Fat: 1 gram
Carbohydrates: 24 grams Protein: 3 grams
Sodium: 265 milligrams Fiber: 3 grams

Totally Delicious Vegan Cornbread

(Serves approximately 24)

This cornbread is so good you’ll want to make it over and over again. And leftovers—if any—freeze well.

2 cups yellow cornmeal
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/3 cup cornstarch or arrowroot powder
      (available in Asian markets and natural foods stores)
1/4 cup sugar (Use your favorite vegan variety.)
2 teaspoons salt
2 Tablespoons baking powder
3 cups soymilk
5 Tablespoons melted nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, cooled

In a large bowl, blend together the cornmeal, flour, cornstarch, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Make a well in the center and pour in the soymilk and melted margarine. Whisk together just enough to combine ingredients.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pour batter into two greased 13" x 9" x 2" baking pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or just until a toothpick inserted into the center of each loaf comes out clean.

Total calories per serving: 128 Fat: 4 grams
Carbohydrates: 22 grams Protein: 3 grams
Sodium: 540 milligrams Fiber: 3 grams

Vegan Spoonbread

(Serves 4)

This is not the light, fluffy, non-vegan spoonbread that often appears on a Southern table. This one is dense, but the flavor is equally enjoyable.

1-3/4 cups soymilk
2/3 cup yellow cornmeal
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Few drops hot sauce
3/4 cup shredded vegan cheddar-style cheese
1/2 cup frozen whole kernel corn, thawed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Put the soymilk, cornmeal, salt, garlic powder, and hot sauce in a 2½- to 3-quart saucepan and stir to blend. Slowly bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5-10 minutes until mixture is thickened and free of lumps.

Remove saucepan from heat and stir in the vegan cheddar and corn.

Spread mixture evenly in a greased shallow 1-quart casserole. Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or just until firm. (It should not brown.) Serve immediately.

Total calories per serving: 133 Fat: 3 grams
Carbohydrates: 22 grams Protein: 6 grams
Sodium: 457 milligrams Fiber: 3 grams

Whole Wheat Biscuits

(Makes approximately 15 biscuits)

Excellent served fresh from the oven. They also make wonderful biscuit toast.

2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/4 cup nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup soymilk
Vegetable oil spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Stir together the flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Using a pastry blender, cut in the margarine until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the soymilk all at once and stir to form a dough.

Turn dough out onto a floured sheet of waxed paper and knead a few turns. Cover with a second sheet of waxed paper and roll out approximately 1/2-inch thick. Cut dough into rounds with a biscuit cutter approximately 2-1/2 inches in diameter and place 1 inch apart on a baking sheet prepared with vegetable oil spray. Repeat with scraps until all dough is used. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until biscuits are golden.

Total calories per biscuit: 86 Fat: 4 grams
Carbohydrates: 12 grams Protein: 3 grams
Sodium: 218 milligrams Fiber: 2 grams

Banana-Strawberry Oat Muffins

(Makes 12 large muffins)

Fruity and delicious, these muffins are great for breakfast or brunch or with a large fruit salad for lunch or supper.

1 cup oat flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup sugar (Use your favorite vegan variety.)
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup soymilk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
2/3 cup chopped fresh strawberries
Vegetable oil spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, blend together the oat flour, rolled oats, sugar, salt, and baking powder.

Make a well in the center and add the oil, soymilk, and vanilla. Blend but do not beat. Fold in the bananas and the strawberries.

Divide the batter among 12 large muffin cups prepared with vegetable oil spray. Bake for 40 minutes or until muffins are a deep golden brown.

Total calories per muffin: 153 Fat: 7 grams
Carbohydrates: 21 grams Protein: 2 grams
Sodium: 321 milligrams Fiber: 2 grams

Garbanzo Bean Flour and Brown Rice Flour Muffins with Indian Seasonings

(Serves 12)

These wheat-free muffins complement main dish salads and well-seasoned soups. They have a well-balanced flavor that isn’t spicy-hot.

1 cup garbanzo bean flour
1 cup brown rice flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup arrowroot powder or cornstarch
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1-1/3 cups soymilk
1/3 cup canola oil
Vegetable oil spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, blend together the flours, salt, baking powder, arrowroot, cumin, turmeric, and garlic powder. Make a well in the center and add the soymilk and oil. Stir just enough to blend.

Divide batter evenly among 12 muffin cups prepared with vegetable oil spray. Bake for 22 minutes or until puffed, golden, and firm to the touch. Do not overbake.

Total calories per muffin: 175 Fat: 8 grams
Carbohydrates: 22 grams Protein: 5 grams
Sodium: 284 milligrams Fiber: 2 grams

Sesame Crisps

(Serves 24)

Serve these with soups or salads.

1-3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup sesame seeds
3/4 cup soymilk

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the flour and garlic salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in the margarine until mixture is crumbly. Stir in the sesame seeds, then the soymilk, until mixture is smooth.

Spread mixture in a pan approximately 13" x 9" x 2" and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until browned. Cut immediately into bars and remove from pan. Serve warm or cooled.

Total calories per serving: 83 Fat: 6 grams
Carbohydrates: 7 grams Protein: 2 grams
Sodium: 128 milligrams Fiber: 2 grams

Spicy Barley-Millet Bread with Onion

(Serves 6)

Serve this moist, flavorful bread with well-seasoned beans or hearty soups.

3 Tablespoons canola oil
2/3 cup chopped yellow onion
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1-1/2 cups barley flour
1/2 cup millet flour
2 Tablespoons potato flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2-1 teaspoon crushed red pepper, according to taste
2-1/2 cups soymilk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Heat the oil in a shallow 12" ovenproof skillet. Add the onions and sauté until soft. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt. Distribute the onion mixture evenly in the bottom of the skillet and set aside.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, stir together the flours, along with the remaining salt, baking powder, and red pepper. Make a well in the center and add the soymilk. Whisk together until well combined.

Pour soymilk mixture carefully over the sautéed onions in the skillet. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until bread is firm, lightly browned, and pulling slightly away from the edges of the skillet. Cut into wedges and serve hot.

Total calories per serving: 227 Fat: 10 grams
Carbohydrates: 35 grams Protein: 8 grams
Sodium: 468 milligrams Fiber: 6 grams

Corn and Scallion Pancakes

(Makes four 3-pancake servings)

Serve with vegan ‘sausages’ for a wonderful supper, Sunday brunch, or any other meal, for that matter.

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2-1/4 cups frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
3/4 cup sliced scallion tops
1-1/2 cups soymilk
2 Tablespoons canola oil
Additional canola oil for brushing griddle

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, stir together the flour, cornstarch, wheat germ, salt, and baking powder. Add the corn and scallions and stir until they are well coated. Make a well in the center. Add the soymilk and the 2 Tablespoons canola oil and stir just to blend.

Brush a griddle (preferably nonstick) with canola oil. Heat griddle to medium. Scoop batter onto skillet, using approximately 1/4 cup batter per pancake. Cook until browned on the bottom, flip, and cook on the other side until it is also browned. Remove to a warmed plate and repeat until all batter is used. Keep warm until all pancakes are done.

Total calories per serving: 339 Fat: 11 grams
Carbohydrates: 56 grams Protein: 12 grams
Sodium: 676 milligrams Fiber: 9 grams

Banana-Blueberry Coffeecake

(Serves 8)

This is a moist coffeecake, excellent with hot tea—or, of course, coffee!

6 Tablespoons nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup sugar (Use your favorite vegan variety.)
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/4 cups mashed ripe banana
2 cups whole wheat flour (or 1 cup whole wheat and 1 cup all-purpose flour), divided
1 cup soymilk, divided
1 cup fresh blueberries, or 1 cup frozen blueberries, thawed and drained
Nonhydrogenated vegan margarine to grease pan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, blend together the margarine, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Stir in the salt and baking powder, then the bananas.

Stir in a third of the flour, blending well, then blend in half of the soymilk. Repeat with another third of the flour, the remaining soymilk, and the last third of the flour, blending well after each addition. Do not beat. Fold in the blueberries.

Spread batter evenly in a greased 13" x 9" x 2" baking pan. Bake for approximately 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cut into squares and serve warm or at room temperature.

Total calories per serving: 301 Fat: 10 grams
Carbohydrates: 56 grams Protein: 6 grams
Sodium: 438 milligrams Fiber: 5 grams

Gingerbread

(Serves 8)

This flavorful gingerbread has a slightly chewy texture. Serve it at breakfast with plain vegan ‘cream cheese’ and/or stewed apples. It also works as dessert after lunch or dinner and packs well into lunchboxes, too.

1/2 cup nonhydrogenated vegan margarine, melted
1 cup sugar (Use your favorite vegan variety.)
1 Tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup molasses
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 cups whole wheat flour
2/3 cup soymilk
Nonhydrogenated vegan margarine to grease pan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, blend together the margarine, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Stir in the molasses and vinegar.

Blend in the salt and baking powder. Then, blend in the flour, alternating with the soymilk. Make sure to begin and end with the flour.

Spread batter in a greased 13" x 9" x 2" baking pan and bake for approximately 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Total calories per serving: 380 Fat: 12 grams
Carbohydrates: 66 grams Protein: 5 grams
Sodium: 512 milligrams Fiber: 4 grams


Peggy Rynk is a frequent contributor to Vegetarian Journal.




Excerpts from the 2005 Issue 4:
Make-Ahead Baked Pasta Delights
Debra Daniels-Zeller creates noodle dishes that go from freezer to oven to table in no time flat.
Whole Grain Vegan Quick Breads
Peggy Rynk bakes healthy loaves, muffins, biscuits, and more.
How Many Youth Are Vegetarian?
VRG polls 8- to 18-year-olds about their dietary habits.
One-Week Low-Sodium Vegan Menu
Dietetic intern Mark Rifkin considers the advantages of low-sodium diets and designs a meal plan to keep salt intake down.
Nutrition Hotline
What is the government doing to help low-income vegetarian families?
Note from the Coordinators
Notes from the VRG Scientific Department
Interviews our dietitians granted, outreach to students and chefs.
Scientific Update
Vegan Cooking Tips
Holiday Potatoes, by Chef Nancy Berkoff, RD, EdD, CCE.
Book Reviews
Catalog
Vegetarian Action
Chicago Soydairy Brings Vegan Treats to Midwest Market and Beyond, by Jim Dunn.
Veggie Bits

The Vegetarian Journal published here is not the complete issue, but these are excerpts from the published magazine. Anyone who wishes to see everything should subscribe to the magazine.

Thanks to volunteer Stephanie Schueler for converting this article to HTML.



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Last Updated
Oct. 7, 2005

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