This recipe for the Best Paleo Bread slices well with great texture and flavor. Use it to make sandwiches or toast it for breakfast!
I know the title of this bread sounds a bit presumptuous, but I promise I don’t mean it that way.
I have to be honest…
I’ve made a whole lot of paleo sandwich “bread” recipes in search of the perfect one. (Side Note: I’m not completely paleo and/or grain-free, but I’ve noticed I feel my best when I limit my wheat intake. Mike doesn’t share my sentiments though.)
There were some recipes I tried that were decent enough and definitely passable as bread-like concoctions, but nothing was stellar. Or even good enough to warrant making a second time (IMHO). And there were also a few loaves that were actually pretty bad in different ways – either the flavor and/or the texture was just off – that ended up only being fit for the garbage (definitely a sad thing). But that’s how we learn, right?
After searching for the perfect paleo sandwich loaf and not coming up with something that I felt completely fit the bill, I got in the kitchen and started experimenting. Again, some loaves were ok, some were obnoxiously inedible.
It took a month or so, but I finally decided to start playing around with adding a few other paleo-friendly starches, like arrowroot and tapioca. That’s what it took for me to come up with what I consider to be the perfect loaf. I had been holding out on adding other starches because I wanted to keep my ingredient list minimal, but really, these additions make all the difference in the end result of this bread.
The Best Paleo Bread
For starters, this loaf is perfect for slicing. Its texture strikes a great balance between light and dense, not to heavy, but sturdy enough to stand up to basically whatever you want to use it for. And thanks to the use of arrowroot and tapioca, it’s quite pliable too.
It also has great flavor; almonds are subtle and the flavors of the other flours blend in well. This bread has a certain richness coming from the eggs and ghee (or coconut oil), similar to brioche. In fact, although coconut oil will also work here, I much prefer the use of ghee for its buttery flavor.
I love this bread toasted with a smear of butter, but it is equally delicious made into a sandwich.
If you’re like me and have been hunting around for a great paleo sandwich bread, I can’t recommend this loaf highly enough. (And if a sweet paleo breakfast-type of bread is more your thing, I think you’ll love my Paleo Cranberry-Pecan Loaf!)
Can You Eat Bread on Paleo?
In general, the paleo diet involves eating nutrient-rich real foods, such as meat, fish, nuts, eggs, vegetables, and fruits. It’s best to choose grass-fed and pasture-raised meats, and organic produce whenever possible. The paleo lifestyle removes refined sugars, grains, legumes, dairy, and unhealthy fats and oils from your diet, as well as highly processed foods. (Read more about the paleo diet on HealthLine and EatingWell.)
However, it’s possible to make paleo bread out of nourishing ingredients that are compliant with this way of eating. If whipping up a loaf of paleo bread helps you stay on track, stick to your goals, and avoid eating something that isn’t on your plan, then it’s well worth it!
My recipe for the Best Paleo Bread has lovely texture and flavor. It’s not overly eggy or overly almond-y, and it doesn’t need to be toasted to taste great! Although, a slice toasted and topped with a pat of butter is perfection.
Paleo baked goods are free of gluten, refined sugars, and dairy. If you’ve perfected regular baking and now you’ve gone paleo, you might be surprised at just how different this way of baking is. I find that in order to get the closest simulation of regular bread (i.e., bread that has gluten), it’s often useful to use a combination of a few different paleo-friendly flours.
Paleo Baking Ingredients
What Flours Are Paleo and Gluten Free?
Here are the most common paleo flours I use, along with a little bit of information about each one:
Almond Flour and Almond Meal: Almond flour is made from blanched almonds that are ground up. Blanched almonds are just almonds that are peeled, so the resulting flour is a light creamy color. On the other hand, almond meal is made from unblanched almonds that are ground up. As a result, almond meal is darker in color with brown flecks throughout.
Arrowroot Starch: You may also see arrowroot starch labeled as arrowroot flour or arrowroot powder. It’s made from tubers traditionally from a plant called Maranta arundinacea, but commercially it’s often found as a mixture of various starches, including starch from the cassava root. Similar to tapioca starch, arrowroot starch is used in paleo baking to improve the texture of baked goods, lightening them up a bit, and help with browning.
Coconut Flour: After coconut milk is removed from coconut meat, the coconut meat is baked at a low temperature to dry it out. Subsequently, the dried coconut meat is ground into coconut flour.
Flaxseed Meal: Flaxseed meal is available either in seed form or ground in meal form, and either in brown or golden color. For paleo baking, my preference is ground golden flaxseed meal, which I find yields the prettiest results and the best texture.
Tapioca Flour: Also called tapioca starch, tapioca flour is made from the root of the cassava plant. Tapioca flour is nearly flavorless, so it’s good for using in both sweet and savory recipes. In paleo baking, this flour helps lighten up and improve the texture of paleo baked goods and make them a bit springier, and also helps with browning. This is why I like using it along with other denser paleo flours, such as almond flour.
Paleo Baking with Almond Flour
Almond flour is often considered the “all purpose” flour of the paleo baking world. It’s used to make things like bread, cakes, and cookies with good results. The only caveat I have is that using almond flour alone can result in a dense baked good, so I typically use almond flour (or almond meal) in conjunction with arrowroot starch, tapioca flour, and/or flaxseed meal to lighten up the texture.
Almond meal and almond flour can be used similarly; however, unless a recipe says that they can be used interchangeably, know that the result might be different. Generally, I find that baking with almond four yields a more “white bread” look and baking with almond meal results in a more “whole wheat bread” appearance.
Paleo Baking with Coconut Flour
Coconut flour is a great alternative when you need to avoid almond flour because of a nut allergy, or for any other reason. With a couple easy tips, coconut flour can also yield delicious gluten free baked goods. Coconut flour is very high in fiber and subsequently absorbs a lot of liquid, so as a general rule, it’s recommended to use the coconut flour and liquid at the same ratio. Coconut flour can also result in very dense and/or dry and crumbly baked goods, so it’s important not to use too much coconut flour, and to use other ingredients to lighten the texture. This is why a lot of recipes that call for coconut flour also call for a lot of eggs. However, then the issue is that the baked goods have an overly eggy taste. Because of this, I prefer to use coconut flour in conjunction with other paleo-friendly flours instead of using it on its own.
What Sweeteners Are Paleo?
Here are some of the most common paleo sweeteners I use:
What Oils and Fats are Paleo?
Here are a few healthy fats and oils that I frequently use in paleo baking:
- Avocado oil
- Coconut oil
- Olive oil (light olive oil works well in baking)
- Ghee (clarified butter)
- Cacao butter
Easy Paleo Bread Recipe
This recipe for paleo bread is easy to make and if you have a well-stocked paleo pantry, you probably have all or at least most of the ingredients already on hand.
Ingredients for Paleo Bread:
- Almond flour
- Arrowroot starch
- Golden flaxseed meal
- Tapioca starch
- Fine salt
- Baking soda
- Ghee or coconut oil
- Plain, unsweetened almond “milk”
- Apple cider vinegar
How to Make Paleo Bread:
This paleo bread is very easy to make! It’s similar to making a cake or quick bread, and there are really just three steps to make the bread dough (which is really more like batter):
- Whisk together the dry ingredients in a bowl.
- Whisk together the wet ingredients in another bowl.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
After that, just pour the batter into a loaf pan and bake it!
I think there are two things that make a really great sandwich bread: 1) the ability to slice the loaf without it crumbling into smithereens, and 2) the fact that it’s delicious as-is, without the need to be toasted or grilled. This bread is wonderful in both aspects; it slices neatly and tastes wonderful as it is.
Paleo Bread Nutrition
I calculated the nutrition information for this loaf based on 14 slices (1 slice per serving). Each 1 slice has the following nutrition information:
- 5g protein
- 14g total fat
- 8g total carbohydrates
- 2g fiber
- 6g net carbs
Is Paleo Bread Keto? What is Keto Bread?
This paleo bread is gluten free, grain free, and free of refined sugars. With just 6g net carbs per serving, this paleo bread may be easy to fit into a keto meal plan.
More Paleo Baked Goods Recipe Inspiration:
- Classic Chocolate Walnut Brownies from Healthy Sweet Eats
- Date and Walnut Paleo Crispbread from An Edible Mosaic
- Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies from Texanerin
- Flourless Chocolate Cake with Caramel and Chocolate Ganache (Paleo Gluten Free Chocolate Turtle Cake Recipe) from Healthy Sweet Eats
- Paleo Banana Bread Muffins from Gimme Delicious
- Paleo Strawberry Shortcake for One from An Edible Mosaic
Best Paleo Bread Recipe (Perfect As-Is or For Making Sandwiches)
- 2 cups almond flour
- 6 tablespoons arrowroot starch
- 4 tablespoons golden flaxseed meal
- 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- 4 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil melted and cooled slightly, plus more to grease the loaf pan
- 4 large eggs lightly beaten
- ½ cup plain, unsweetened almond “milk”
- 1½ teaspoons apple cider vinegar
Preheat oven to 350F; generously grease an 8½ by 4½-inch loaf pan with ghee or coconut oil.
Whisk together the almond meal, arrowroot starch, flaxseed meal, tapioca starch, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl.
Whisk together the slightly cooled butter or coconut oil, eggs, almond “milk”, and vinegar in a medium bowl.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry all at once and stir until combined, being careful not to over-mix.
Immediately pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 40 to 45 minutes in a glass pan.
Cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving, and store any leftovers wrapped in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Update January 20, 2016: I received a lot of emails with different questions about making this bread. I've done several additional rounds of testing and have made slight updates to the recipe, and here are my tips.
Cooking Time: I use a glass loaf pan to make this bread. If you use a metal loaf pan, you may need to adjust the cooking time because although glass takes a bit longer than metal to heat up, once it's hot, it retains heat better.
Troubleshooting Why Your Loaf Didn't Rise: Be sure to use the same size baking dish that the recipe specifies; make sure your oven is properly calibrated; preheat your oven before baking; use fresh baking soda; don't skip the vinegar.
Brands of Almond Flour I've Used: I've successfully made this recipe with Bob's Red Mill, Honeyville, and Anthony's almond flour. If you use almond meal instead of almond flour, your bread will be darker.
Substitutions: I have tested the following substitutions with good results:
- No Arrowroot Starch: Omit the arrowroot starch; add 1 large egg white and increase the tapioca starch to 4 tablespoons (30 g).
- Golden Flaxseed Meal: Brown flaxseed meal will also work, but you'll have specks of brown in your loaf. You can make your own flaxseed meal by finely grinding flaxseeds, but do not use whole flaxseeds for this recipe.
- Ghee or Coconut Oil: Unsalted butter (melted and cooled slightly) will also work.
- Plain, Unsweetened Almond "Milk": Cow's milk will also work (I tested this recipe with both whole milk and 2% milk with good results). Other types of milk may also work, but I haven't tested them (if you make this with another type of milk, please let us know how it goes in the comments!).
Update October 9, 2018: I added nutritional information for this recipe, which was calculated through the nutrition plugin API. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutrition information.
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