Gluten Free Sunflower & Millet Bread

It’s picnic season around here. For some reason, the month of July means picnics as of late for us. Personally, I think it’s the heat multiplied by the lack of air conditioning at home, quadrupled by the fact that the hottest time of the day is at the dinner hour. Oh yea. Neither of us wants to be standing over the stove or the grill for dinner when it’s HOT-HOT-HOT. (Well, HOT for us, anyway. We *are* from snow-country, ya know. LOL)

The Chicklet and I set about to make some bread the other day when I realized I was missing some key ingredients (namely enough raw pepita seeds for the Pepita-Powered Bread recipe we love so.). So, we through together this tasty sunflower seed version instead. My Love came home and immediately declared its seeded quality to be delectable. After filling my sandwich bread with cucumbers, tomatoes and sprouts with a little lemon-tahini dressing, I had to agree. And I’m NOT a seed-raisiny-bread kind of gal.

Even the Chicklet declared this bread munchable as she chewed up a teeny piece – and really, she’s not a bread eater. (Probably just lucked out living in a non-bread eating household then, huh?)

I find myself not eating as much bread as the years going on. Maybe now that I have a great wrap recipe – quick, easy and versatile – I don’t *need* traditional bread. I think it must because after years one just acclimated and the rest of the eating rainbow becomes so much more satisfying. I’ve even grown accustomed to watching my Love eat the fresh bread rolls or sticks that are served at restaurants too. That is – I *WAS* accustomed to this UNTIL a restaurant in our area *finally* got a clue!

On Sunday, we brought the kidlet to brunch at a local chain that serves mostly fish, etc. I knew I could certainly eat the planked salmon and a few fresh salads with local strawberries or huckleberries. It was an easy decision for me, I really was craving a huge fresh salad with salmon. What I didn’t expect was having the waiter listen to my gluten-related questions (ask them even when you THINK you know the answer, people – things change!) so carefully and then smile. He completely KNEW what I was talking about! YES!

Not only did he reassure me that the hollandaise was gluten-free (Yes, he still checked with the Chef… he told me he checks EVERY time someone asks just in case the kitchen has made a substitute or something), but he also suggested that I get some fresh tomato slices under my salmon Benedict. Oh yea! YUM!

AND… THE ICING ON THE CAKE: Instead of bringing over a huge plate of coffee cake and sweet rolls (as this is what each table gets on brunch days), he brought over a HUGE plate of fresh fruit (three kinds of melons, grapes, strawberries and some apple slices) with some fresh whipped cream for us to share.

ROCK ON! Now someone PLEASE tell me: WHY can’t other restaurants clue in and offer someone something besides the ubiquitous bread basket? What about a simple cheese/apple platter instead? Is the cost involved in cheese really that much more than bread? Well… wait.. suppose that depends on the cheese, right? So wouldn’t that be doable? Or hey – just give me a plate of fresh fruit. I’ll be happy every time!

Whoa…. this post ran away from me. And here I was writing about our wonderful Sunflower-Millet Bread that we used for picnics and for French toast… OH! And it makes the most killer peanut butter toast too! The best part: it didn’t fall apart for any of the above either. Just slice it as you eat it and store it in an airtight container on the counter. It was last 5-7 days.

Ay Ay. Sorry for the loopy ride with the posts as of late. My mind is wandering and I am soaking in the baby giggles and chatter. I just know I don’t get to hear them for very long. I’m going to soak them in for as long as I can…. and *every* picnic this summer is served at our local kids-playground or kid-friendly climbing/walking spots. Oh, we love her so!

Gluten Free Sunflower & Millet Bread
Printable recipe can be found here.
Makes 1 – large loaf (I used a 1.5 pound loaf pan)

1/2 cup warm water
2 Tablespoons agave nectar
1 1/2 Tablespoons yeast
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 1/3 cup millet flour (or sorghum if you don’t have millet)
3/4 cup GF oat flour or quinoa flour
1/2 cup potato starch (NOT potato flour)
1/3 cup flax seeds (not ground/meal)
2 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
2 eggs
1 cup warm water (in addition to the 1/2 cup listed above)
2 Tablespoons brown sugar or 2 Tablespoons honey + 1 Tablespoon molasses
4 Tablespoons melted butter


  1. Heat 1/2 cup water for proofing yeast (not too hot!) then add 2 Tablespoons agave or honey and 1 1/2 Tablespoons of yeast. Set aside to proof for 8 – 10 minutes.
  2. In the bowl of your food processor, whirl the sunflower seeds until mostly ground/pulverized. There will still be a few chunky seeds pieces. (NOTE: If you don’t like seedy bread – like me – feel free to whirl longer until completely pulverized.)
  3. Pour sunflower mixture into the bowl of your mixer. Add millet flour, GF oat flour (or quinoa flour), potato starch, flax seeds and xanthan gum. Mix together.
  4. Mix together remaining water (1 cup), brown sugar (or honey/molasses), melted butter and two eggs. Add this to the bread mixture.
  5. Pour proofed yeast mixture over the top of all.
  6. Mix for 4 – 5 minutes on medium high. (Start slowly and once the mixture is well incorporated, then turn your mixer up to medium-high and start timing.)
  7. Spray a bread loaf pan with olive oil or line with parchment paper. Pour bread dough in to pan and even it out and smooth the top with a wet spatula.
  8. Set aside to rise for 35-45 minutes.
  9. Preheat oven to 350F.
  10. Bake for 40 -50 minutes UNTIL an internal temperature of 205F is reached.
  11. Cool in pan for 5 minutes. Loosen from the sides, if necessary, and cool for an addition 30 minutes on a cooling rack before slicing.
  12. Store in an airtight container on the counter for 5 – 7 days. Slice as you need to avoid drying out the bread.

Happy GF Picnic Sandwiches!
~Kate and her co-baker, The Chicklet

Picnic Time!


  1. Kate, my child is allergic to sunflower — when you make it w/ pepitas, do you use the same amt that you used for the sunflower seeds?

  2. I wish restaurants would give up the bread basket, too. 🙂 And, yes, I’ve gone without bread for so long that I don’t miss it.

    It’s wonderful that you’re having such a good time with your daughter. The picture of her and the stroller is priceless.

  3. Hello Kate,
    That bread sounds very promising !
    I’ve got quinoa flour to use instead of GF oat flour. But I can’t get my hands on sorghum flour (nor millet flour). That doesn’t seem to *exist* here… What do you think I could substitute it with ?

    Lovely picture of the Chicklet, by the way 🙂

  4. Kate – I too have substituted almond meal for the pepita seeds when I’ve found myself without them in the pantry. The GF oats taste better with the almond meal than the quinoa flakes.

  5. Great dinning out story, great looking bread, such an adorable kid!

    How I love reading this blog!

  6. Even after a year, I still hate it when all my dining companions get the delicious looking bread basket and I just get to watch. Even at those places that “get it”. That’s a great idea to serve a small cheese plate or fruit!

    On a way less bitter note, I can’t wait to try making this bread. It sounds amazing!

  7. I am interested in this perfect wrap recipe!

  8. My goodness that bread looks amazing!! So light and fluffy!! I’m definitely trying that!! 😉 Thanks for another great recipe! I’m also very sorry about the loss of your dog. Our cats are great friends and such good companions… I do not look forward to that time in their life! Your daughter is beautiful!! I love that picture!

  9. kimberly says:

    can you recommend another substitute for GF oats besides quinoa?

    • I will have to experiment with this one, kimberly. I prefer to use the GF oats.. so I haven’t experimented much with substitutes to be honest. Maybe someone else has???

  10. I love how this bread looks – will have to try it. I’m hoping to use sorghum in place of oats/quinoa.
    For those of you looking for a source of sorghum and millet: Azure Standard has both (though there might be contamination issues if you’re celiac). Twin Valley Mills has sorghum – there are no contamination issues to worry about there!

  11. man, this really looks like “real” bread.
    thanks kate!

  12. That is a terrific looking bread, Kate! Thanks for sharing your restaurant experience, too. I think the restaurants who get real food (even “fine” restaurants don’t always), get that it’s easy to take care of us who are gluten free. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing the pics of Zoe! She’s just adorable. And, providence indeed that she’s not a big bread fanatic … I just don’t miss it either.

    With all your picnic attendance, you’ve probably got a recipe that would be just right for this month’s Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free! blog carnival, which I am hosting. You, and your readers can check it our here: Hope you’ll all join in! It promises to be a lot of fun and a great source of recipes. 🙂


  13. Hi Kate,
    This bread looks amazing! I noticed that there’s no salt in the recipe. That’s great, but I just wanted to double check.

    • Hmmmm…I just double checked and nope… I didn’t put salt in it. huh. LOL…. so thought I would have done that.
      Good eye!

  14. Hi Kate,

    I’m a first-time visitor to your blog, but I’m so glad I found it!

    That bread looks incredible, I’m SO excited to try making it. Do you ever use a bread machine? Do you think this particular recipe would work in one? I am new to the world of bread machines (having made one mediocre loaf so far) and would love to find new recipes.


    • I haven’t used a bread machine in a while, Elle. I think you could give it a try though! I havne’t used one since mixing GF bread requires a heavy beating (4-6 minutes) with the mixer and a bread machine just doesn’t do that.

  15. I’ve been missing our email chats, but I know your hands are full. At least we know we’re only a blog away.

    Lovely post!


    • I love you, Sweet Ging!
      Yes – email is definitely not something I have much time for lately…. or getting blog posts up!
      I have photos… ideas… recipes… but no time to write.
      Ah well. One day maybe. But for now, I’m trying to enjoy even the whiny moments. LOL

  16. That is a gorgeous loaf of bread. What kind of yeast do you use? I used to buy yeast in bulk but can’t find it now so have been using those little packets. But those packets do not contain the 1.5 tablespoons called for in your recipe. Thanks for any help you can offer.

    • Hi Tracy –
      I buy Red Star yeast at CostCo… huge container! I keep it in the fridge because it will last forEVER! 😀

  17. Hi Kate! I tried this last weekend and literally just got around to tasting it (don’t ask). I AM IN LOVE! I have really been missing multi-grain breads.

    quick tip for others: I used my food processor on some GF oats and it turned out great for the oat flour. This recipe is a keeper! and good call on the agave nectar, i have NEVER had yeast fizz up so much before 🙂


  18. Hi –
    This may be a silly question, but what is a 1.5 lb pan in inches? Would a 9×5 pan work? Thanks!! 🙂

    • Ohhh..good question – it is 10.5 inches by 5.5 inches.
      To fit a 9 x 5 pan (which I couldn’t find in my kitchen…. bah!), you may want to lessen the amount of dough you put in and use a couple scoops to make some rolls. Just drop the scoops (like an ice cream scoop) on to parchment paper to bake as a roll. Watch the bake time on these to make sure they don’t burn!

  19. Ooooh this is good bread. I just made it tonight. So good. Thank you for this recipe. I will now be making it often. Very often. Must see how it freezes. Needs salt, though (I can’t stand saltless stuff).

  20. Hi, Is this yeast regular or fast acting? Looks like amazing bread, can’t wait to try it. Where do you get the agave nectar by the way?

    So, I gather you can’t make this bread in a breadmaker.

    Amazing site, keep up the great informative creative site, many many people obviously look to you for your guidance and wisdom, thanks for sharing, leanne

  21. Hi Kate-
    I loved the idea of this bread, but I only make bread in my bread machine. So I adapted it to work in the bread machine and posted it on my blog (which has recently undergone an overhaul since we have started eating Gluten and Casein Free). You can see the bread machine version on my blog.
    I only listed the ingredients I used, not other options. I changed butter to oil to make it dairy free and I placed the ingredients in the order needed for the bread machine. It turned out great! Thanks a bunch!

  22. Hi
    I did make this great bread and it really wasn’t hard at all, the list of ingredients had me really wondering if it was going to be worth it. I must say it was no problem to make and it is so moist and delicious compared to any store bought I have tried in the last 8 monthes, thank you!!

    I couldn’t find the millet flour but used sorghum.

    I am also wondering if you could make this bread without the sugar or less nectar, I wouldn’t mind it a bit less sweet. It has a touch of sweet, I like, but could do without it to make it like a bread I used to love before becoming gluten free.
    Thanks again.

  23. Carol Cripps says:

    Thank you for a recipe whose results actually look like bread. I’ve recently been on an elimination diet and when adding foods back, the only thing I reacted to was wheat! I feel so much better wqithout it, it’s almost sublime. However, I miss the bread. I’ve tried baking my own, but only ovtained a two-inch high brick as a result. Your recipe and accompanying photo have nearly brought me to tears! Thanks again,


    • Carol Cripps says:

      I made the bread on Saturday. Th bulk store I shopped in didn’t have millet OR sorghum flour, so I subbed white buckwheat (I like buckwheat) and the bread was divine! It makes the yummmmiest toast! I added a bit of salt, and while someone asked how to make it less sweet, I like the sweetness. It goes very well with sandwich meats, as well as almond butter. So far, I’m not sharing any – it’s that good. Thank you, thank you, thank you.


  24. I made a few adjustments – namely taking the eggs out and slightly increasing the flax seed and water and substituting oil for butter.
    Turned out wonderful – thanks for the inspiration!

  25. debbie trierweiler says:

    I’m VERY new to the whole gluten free things, my daughter seems to have stomach problems at least once a week & is missing so much school (she’s 16)I’m reading everything I can & we are trying slowly to eliminate gluten, wheat, barley, etc. but it is so hard. The recipes I find require so many ingredients & most of them I’ve never heard of. I could go to an organic type store & probably buy all these things, but we are a very limited income. Please help me with any ideas?? Thanks so much for any help you can offer. P.S. I love your website.

    • Debbie –

      The easiest way to start is to shop around the edges of your grocer. Think fresh fruit/veggies, basic meats, dairy, etc. Avoid flavored, brined meats – just but the fresh meat and season it yourself. Avoid yogurts, etc with added grains (like the ones with granola, etc) and stick to the items that you KNOW what each ingredient is. (For example, we buy sour cream from a specific brand because the ingredient list is: “Grade A cultured cream”).

      You *don’t* have to buy expensive ingredients for your daughter’s health to return. When you start, start with rice and potatoes…. even corn tortillas (purely corn tortillas). These staples will provide her with carbs, etc. Once she gets her health back, and you gain confidence with what she is required to eat, you can explore recipes and gluten free flour blends.

      Yes, the GF flour blends, etc are more expensive. Yes, there are some ingredients that will be new to you but it is manageable even though I KNOW it doesn’t look like it nor feel like it right now.

      You will learn when/where to buy your materials. You don’t HAVE to buy organic… but you do have to find reputable sources foryour rice flours. I would start out with rice flour, tapioca starch (you can make great rolls with just tapioca flour and cheese, eggs, etc…. the recipe is here), etc. You will find these two ingredients cheaply in any Asian market if you are so lucky to live near one. You can find potato starch more cheaply during Passover than other times of the year – unless you are lucky enough to live near a large Jewish community, etc.

      Read this post about grocery shopping for info about shopping on the edges.

      Read this post for the recipe for the rolls made with tapioca flour (also called tapioca starch or tapioca starch flour) and other basic staples like eggs, cheese, and seasonings.

      I hope this helps!

  26. Best bread I ever had.I am not a bread person but my husband loves it and since I went gluten free because of my celiac he had too with only difference that he would still eat regular bread.Recently he found out that his wheat and gluten igG were a little high so he decided that will go 100% gluten free.Now he is very happy that finally he will still be able to eat bread that not only looks normal but tastes really good.Thank you for this wonderful recipe.

  27. Debbie Keeter says:

    my bread was great, but sunk in the middle. Did i cook it to fast? Finally to eat something that tastes like real bread.

  28. Hi. Thanks for the recipe. I have sweet white sorghum at home, but if it makes a difference I can buy millet flour. Is one preferred over the other for this bread? Thanks!

  29. Hi Kate,
    Not sure if you are still talking about this but have bookmarked a few of your recipes. Am newish to GF and wonder why you don’t blend the flax seeds or just use meal…Are the seeds for texture?

    Thanks, Kris

  30. Hi! Thanks for sharing this recipe, looks great! Since my daughter is allergic to eggs(or egg-replacer as well as it may contain soya or potato or some other ingredients she is sensitive to) I don’t use them in any bakings, I do use flax “eggs” when the recipe requires one or max. two eggs, but about this bread wasn’t really sure if it’ll turn good w/o eggs.


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