You will love the taste and texture of this oatmeal beer bread, friends. I made this using a lovely porter, but you could also use a stout with similar results.
Do you like baking with beer? Try my double chocolate stout cake with vanilla porter toffee.
For ease of browsing, here are all of my bread recipes in one place.
Oatmeal Beer Bread
The Beloved and I stopped by the Crafty Beer Shop when we were at Lafayette Village this weekend.
I was looking for some beer to bake with, and as soon as I saw the Old Neighborhood Oatmeal Porter from Mother Earth Brewing in Kinston, this whole post appeared before me.
Honestly. I knew exactly what I was going to say. And make. An oatmeal beer bread made with oatmeal porter. Not a quick bread, but a yeast-raised beer bread, malty bittersweet to marry beautifully with oatmeal and the oatmeal porter.
Like most of my bread recipes, this oatmeal beer bread is made using a modified straight dough method: mix the oatmeal, beer and half the flour into a batter and let it hang out so the oatmeal hydrates.
Then, just toss in all the rest of the ingredients and knead away. You could absolutely put some raisins or dried currants in your batter to make a perfect morning toasting bread.
Snapshots from My Old Neighborhood
In my old neighborhood, we didn’t have streetlights until I was nine. We played flashlight tag on long summer nights, and we could hide simply by lying down in a slight dip in someone’s yard. Kick the Can. Capture the Flag. Red Rover. Color Man, a tag game that might have been unique to our neighborhood. We played them all, over and over again.
We had a Fourth of July Parade every year that wound through our quiet streets and ended up at the neighborhood swim club. What seemed like hundreds of kids with red, white and blue crepe paper wound in the spokes of their bicycles paraded and sweated and ate watermelon. Each year, my friend’s older sister Carol would faint in the withering summer sunshine.
In my old neighborhood, we all learned to kiss by playing Seven Minutes in Heaven in Julie’s old playhouse. I am pretty sure that, by the time we reached adolescence, each neighborhood kid had kissed every other neighborhood kid at least once.
We all walked to elementary school in the old neighborhood. The school was named for the neighborhood. Or was it the other way around? A mile there. A mile back, from the time we were in fourth grade. We were never afraid; there was no need.
Sometimes I rode to and from school on the back of Lizzie’s yellow bicycle. I read, knees out to the sides and glasses perched upon my nose, balanced on the rear fender like some angular owl. I tore more than one sole off my shoes by getting a little too close to the spokes. The bike and the book always survived, but the Stride Rite crepe-soled shoes had it rough.
When we were in middle school, we would get up, get dressed and be out the door to reach the bus stop half an hour before the bus was due so we could play stick ball or have crab apple fights before the bus came. When we got home, there was always a snack. Fresh peanut butter cookies and milk, maybe raisin bars, or even the precursor to the Little Debbie oatmeal cream pie. I can still remember that flavor from my childhood, and while I wouldn’t turn down a Little Debbie even these days, they are not the same as I remember.
Most kids had slumber parties for their birthdays. We’d play “Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board,” raising each other up over our heads with two fingers each. At my parties, we’d go raid our tin-lined pull out bread drawer: Roman Meal (grown-up bread. Ew.) on one side, Sunbeam on the other. The oatmeal cream pies in the middle. And of course we hypnotized each other. Because, why wouldn’t we?
In my old neighborhood, if an adult wasn’t your mom or your dad, they were your aunt or your uncle. On my street alone, I had an Aunt Queenie, an Uncle Ivan, an Aunt Caroline, an Uncle Bob, an Aunt Betty and an Uncle Jim. When one set of parents decided to throw a party, all the kids would sleep over at another sets’ house. We were communally raised.
Like any neighborhood, we had our legends. Marcie and the burning bush. The pink and blue toilet paper rolling mystery. The awful kitchen fire of 1973. The great Sporking incident of ’78. The Pocket Lady.
I sometimes think that our neighborhood had more than its share of tragedy. Car accidents, suicide, and other untimely deaths. Cancer, cancer and more cancer.
While there was plenty of sadness, there were also years and years of love and laughter, of growing up together. When I see these people, even when I haven’t seen them for decades, I feel at home.
Even though that street and that old neighborhood haven’t been my street and my neighborhood for thirty years, the people who I grew up with, who were all shaped by the ebb and flow and rhythm of life on that street, in that neighborhood, are my people. We resonate in sympathetic harmony.
A Note About Measurements
This is the kitchen scale that I recommend for home cooks and bakers. Using a scale will help you be more accurate and consistent in your measurements.
It is lightweight, easy to store, accurate, and very easy to use.
Don't let its small price and small size fool you. The Escali Primo is an accurate and easy-to-use food scale that I have used for years. It's easy to store, easy to use, has a tare function, and easily switches between grams and ounces/pounds for accurate measurements.
If you have any questions about this porter bread recipe or any other, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
You can leave a comment here, and I will be back in touch in about 24 hours.
If your question in more urgent, you can email me and I answer within about 4 hours.
Either way, I promise to help!
Old Neighborhood Oatmeal Porter Oatmeal Beer Bread
This oatmeal beer bread is deeply flavorful, chewy, a bit sweet from the molasses, malt and milk sugars with just the merest bitter edge from the hops and molasses. An addition of almost any dried fruits and/or toasted nuts would be most welcome here. I would not hesitate to use this bread to dunk into almost any sort of stew or gravy. I'm thinking it would go particularly well with lamb stew. As written, this makes a 1 1/2 pound loaf in an 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" bread pan. I used the remainder, about 13 oz or so, to make the small boule. Feel free to bake this all as rounds or make them as rolls. This would be a great addition to your dinner table!
- 17 oz bread flour, (I used King Arthur)
- 5.5 oz (1 1/2 cups) rolled oats (I used Bob's Red Mill)
- 1 12 oz bottle of porter, (I used Mother Earth Brewing's Old Neighborhood Oatmeal Porter. An oatmeal stout would work here as well)
- 4 oz whole milk, (you could substitute 2% or even skim)
- 2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 oz Grandma's Molasses by weight, not volume, (mild molasses)
- 1 oz melted butter
- 1 Tablespoon (about 1/2 oz) granulated sugar
- 1 egg beaten together with 1 Tablespoon of milk
- rolled oats for decorating the tops of the loaves
- Put half the flour (just eyeball it), the oats and the beer in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix until well-combined, then cover and let rest for 30-45 minutes to soften up the oats.
- Mix the milk and yeast together and add that to the bowl along with the rest of the flour, the salt, molasses, melted butter and sugar.
- Mix on low speed using the dough hook. The mixture will look pretty wet, but forge ahead.
- Once all the ingredients are mixed, turn the speed up to medium and knead until you have a sticky dough that clears the sides of the bowl but sticks in the bottom of the mixer bowl in about a 2" circle. Knead for about 10 minutes. The dough will be very soft, and you'll have to oil hands or coat them with pan spray to work with it.
- Form the dough into a reasonable-looking ball and drop it back into the mixer bowl. Spray the top with pan spray. Cover and let rise in a warm, moist place until doubled, about 2 hours. I bring a mug of water to a boil in the microwave and then scoot it to one side and let the dough rise that way.
- Once the dough has risen, gently press out the gases. Divide the dough so that one piece that weighs 1 1/2 pounds. With oiled hands on a lightly oiled surface, press that piece out into a rectangle and then roll it up into a log. Fit it into an 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" baking pan, spray with pan spray (or brush with a bit of oil) and cover.
- With the remainder of the dough, roll it into a smooth ball, tightening the top as much as possible. Place on a sheet of parchment, spray with pan spray or brush with some oil and cover. Let both loaves rise in a warm, moist place until almost doubled again, about 90 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 400F a good 45 minutes before baking. Place a baking stone on a rack one down from the center of the oven.
- When ready to bake, gently but thoroughly brush the tops of the loaves with the egg-milk mixture and then evenly toss on some rolled oats.
- Slide the round on the parchment onto the baking stones and place the baking pan next to, it, leaving enough room so the round doesn't bake onto the pan.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to 350F and continue baking until the loaves are a lovely deep golden brown and the internal temperature is between 195F and 200F. You may have to cover the loaves with foil to prevent overbrowning, so keep an eye on them.
- My round was finished in about 30 minutes while the loaf in the pan took around 40 minutes.
- Let cool on racks, turning the loaf in the pan out after about 5 minutes so it doesn't get soggy. Let cool to below 140F before slicing or ripping off a chunk and devouring. If you can wait that long.
Feel free to bake this bread as rolls if you'd like. You can also bake two or three larger rounds; it's completely up to you. Enjoy!
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Nutrition InformationYield 12 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 292Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 22mgSodium 384mgCarbohydrates 49gFiber 3gSugar 5gProtein 9g
The stated nutritional information is provided as a courtesy. It is calculated through third party software and is intended as a guideline only.
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Thank you for reading today; I appreciate it. Enjoy the porter bread, and have a wonderful day.
What Others Are Saying...
What a beautiful post. I found myself smiling from the first paragraph. Those of us in our age bracket 🙂 grew up in neighborhoods, real neighborhoods, and we all have similar stories so yours sing true to even me. What a magical, wonderful childhood. I wish we could offer the same to our kids. I go back home every summer and roam through the streets that used to be filled to bursting with kids, especially in the summer, and never see even one. No toys in yards and only once did I see chalk drawings on the sidewalk. Everything you described, all of these memories, we are the end of the trail. Thanks for bringing them all back.
And I love your bread. It is perfect! And the recipe is bookmarked! I think an oaty beery bread is just perfect in the winter. With cheese and butter.
Jennifer Field says
Perfect with cheese and butter. And black bean soup. I think it would be lovely with one of JP’s lamb tagine too!
I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Are me feel all nostalgic to write it. 🙂
Your eloquent words about the old neighborhood ring true for me too. And the accompanying recipe is equally as warm and comforting. Cheers from NorCal!
Jennifer Field says
Thank you so much, Brooks! We still have a couple of pieces of that bread left… =)
I’m too busy with work this time of year to do any bread baking for myself, but I just had to pause to tell you how beautifully you composed these photographs. The layered textures of the burlap, the straw mat, the multi-colored woods and the scattered oats all form a gorgeous palette of wintry browns that show off that beautiful bread to perfection.
Jennifer Field says
Oh, thank you!! I was hoping the monochromatic color scheme would work out, and I’m glad you liked it! Glad you stopped in, and hopefully I’ll see you more after the holidays. =)
Dionne Baldwin says
Your neighborhood sounds like the perfect example of how things used to be. Those were the days we wished would never come to an end! I’m bummed that Tay can’t have those memories or even play in the front yard unsupervised. The neighborhood we live in now is nothing like that. And Seven minutes of heaven? That made me “lol”! 🙂 Thanks for sharing your story.
P.S.- Thanks for the recipe! I am so excited to try this.
Jennifer Field says
Yeah, it really was another world, Dionne. I think you will love-love-love the bread! Makes me happy you’re going to make it! xoxo
Coco in the Kitchen says
This bread looks SO yummy, Jenni.
I’ve never really made bread before, but this might be my first try!
Jennifer Field says
Oh, I do hope you give it a try, Coco! That would make me so happy, and I think you’ll really like this bread!
I just made this bread and it was phenomenal! I homebrew beer and I have a ton of a batch of porter beer that needs to be used up so I was looking for recipes to use it in. The porter is a toffee hazelnut one so I was not sure at all how that would turn out in the bread… but it is great!
I ended up needing to use a lot more flour than the recipe called for. This might be because I didn’t use as many oats as I needed to… the recipe says 5.5 oz (1 1/2 cups) rolled oats, but I was confused because 5.5 oz doesn’t equal 1.5 cups, so I just used the lower amount (5.5 oz or ~0.6 cups). Anyway, I’m a seasoned bread baker and I know what texture bread needs to be, so I just went off my gut instinct and kept adding flour until the texture was right. It also baked quicker than she suggested. I forgot to put on the egg-milk mixture before baking, but I thought the bread still came out great.
I’ll be using this recipe again until my porter is all gone! Thanks!
Jennifer Field says
I’m glad you kept going and that you enjoyed it! I should have specified 5.5 oz by weight, not volume. Next time you try it, go for the whole 1 1/2 cups because the oats provide such a lovely flavor and texture. 🙂
Rebecca Brandt says
What a beautiful loaf! This is the first non-no-knead bread that I’ve successfully made. Thank you for clear directions and delicious recipe.
Jennifer Field says
Oh, I am so glad you made and enjoyed it! I try and write very specific instructions, so I am really happy to hear they were easy to follow!