The lovely folks at Lindley Mills, a local grain mill in Graham, NC, sent me a 2 pound bag of their incredible Super Sprout™ Sprouted Whole Wheat Flour. And I made Whole Wheat English Muffins (technically sprouted wheat English muffins) with some of it. An excellent plan. Thanks, Lindley Mills!
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Lindley Mills Super Sprout™ Flour
What do you think about when you hear “Whole Wheat English Muffins?” If you’re anything like me, I’d think, “Ew. Dry. Quick, heap on the butter and drown it in jam!” Plus, store-bought English muffins are so thin that, by the time you split them, you can practically see through them, or one side is smaller than the other.
I am here to tell you I have become a whole wheat English muffin convert thanks to Lindley Mills.
They very kindly sent me some of their Super Sprout™ flour a couple of months ago, and when a reader asked me to make English muffins, I decided it would be the perfect time to break it out.
I’m really glad I did, too.
It’s 100% whole wheat flour, but because it’s ground from sprouted wheat, it has a wonderful, full flavor without any of the bitterness (and dryness) I normally associate with whole wheat flour. I am really impressed with its flavor and performance.
Here’s a sciencey bit from the Lindley Mills website:
Scientific studies have shown that the sprouting of grains causes an increase in enzyme activity, an increase in total proteins, changes in amino acid composition, measurable increases in soluble fiber, a decrease in starch, and slightly higher amounts of some minerals and vitamins including Beta Carotene, Folic Acid, Iron, Omega 6 fatty acids, Omega 3 fatty acids, B and D Vitamins, Niacin, Calcium, and Vitamin E. — Lindley Mills, Super Sprout Nutrition
And here’s a non-sciencey bit from me. This flour is delicious.
How Is Sprouted Wheat Flour Different Than Whole Wheat Flour?
In addition to the sciencey bit above, sprouted wheat flour soaks up much more liquid than a standard bread flour does.
You’ll have to compensate by adding up to 30% in additional liquid to your recipe. That means if your recipe calls for 10 ounces of liquid, be prepared to add up to 13 oz to get the same texture.
The base recipe for my whole wheat English muffins called for 14 oz of lukewarm milk.
I added 15.75 oz and could easily have added more. Next time, I expect I will end up using somewhere between 17 and 18 oz.
My dough was soft, but I think it would have spread a bit more and cooked more quickly on the griddle if it had been a little slacker. Regardless, the flavor is excellent.
Rather than piling on the butter and jam to hide a dry, slightly bitter English muffin, I wanted to add just enough of each to enhance the mellow, well-rounded flavor of the wheat.
I would be remiss if I didn’t let you know that these sprouted wheat English muffins are also the perfect vehicle for getting egg, bacon and cheese into your mouth in the most delicious way.
I portioned my dough into 16 portions as the recipe called for. Please get a kitchen scale for this and other baking tasks. I use mine every single day.
If you divide yours by 12 instead, you’ll end up with the perfect “oversize” English muffins to build a burger on. Just an idea!
And if you need burger inspiration, please consider making one of my epic burger recipes and serving it on an oversized sprouted wheat English muffin!
Is It Hard to Make English Muffins?
The short answer is no, it’s not hard to make English muffins.
What you need is:
- a pretty straightforward but wet dough (more like a very thick batter)
- a stove top baking surface such as a griddle, electric fry pan or well-seasoned cast iron skillets
- some semolina flour (easy to find at the grocery store or buy online)
- and some time and willingness to futz about just a bit.
How To Make Sprouted Wheat English Muffins
In a nut shell,
- make the wet dough
- allow it to double in bulk
- press out the gases
- portion the dough
- shape into rounds that will spread as they sit there.
- Let them rise directly on the unheated semolina-dusted skillets/griddles, and when they’re ready to cook
- heat them over gentle heat until they’re browned but not burned on the tops and bottoms and done all the way through. You’re shooting for 200F in the centers.
Don’t Make the Mistake I Did
As I said before, my dough was soft but not super slack, so my guys are a bit thicker.
I rather like the thickness, but they did take a long time to cook over low-to-medium-low heat, and I had to flip them a lot, adjust the temperature often and move the pans around so everyone heated evenly.
My guys took about 40 minutes to “bake” through. If you make a wetter dough so they aren’t quite as thick, yours will probably bake up in 25-30 minutes.
The moral of the story is “think thick batter rather than dough.”
Okay. Enough talk. Let’s make some whole wheat English muffins.
How to Store These Muffins
Like most homemade baked goods, English muffins are best served the same day you make them.
Fortunately, bread freezes really well, so take advantage of that if you don’t think you have it in you to eat 16 English muffins in one go!
Once you bake your muffins, allow them to cool completely, and then put them in heavy duty freezer bags, pressing out as much air as you can before sealing.
The muffins will be just fine for at least 4 weeks, but I’m sure you will finish them off way before then.
How to Split an English Muffin
You’ve heard the Thomas’s people talk about the nooks and crannies in English muffins, right?
After you work so hard to mix a light and airy dough, you want to take advantage of the open crumb structure.
Cutting your whole wheat English muffins in half with a knife minimizes the nooks and crannies by making a clean cut.
Your better bet is fork split your English muffins. Here’s how to do it:
- Hold a muffin in your non-dominant hand.
- Use a fork to split your muffin in two. Jab the tines of the fork all the way into the muffin as far as it will go all around the circumference.
- Once you’ve gone all around the “equator” of your muffin, you should be able to pull the two halves apart, leaving a beautiful open crumb that will toast up perfectly and leave you plenty of “nooks and crannies” to catch your butter and jam.
What To Serve with Your Muffins
You can’t go wrong with butter and jam, and I am rather partial to my fig jam with vanilla and black pepper. It’s sweet and savory and quite lovely.
And if you’re not a fan of making your own jam, you really cannot go wrong with Bonne Maman Raspberry Preserves.
Whole Wheat English Muffins Recipe
This recipe is based on the English Muffin Recipe from King Arthur Flour.
The only changes I made were to
- sub in the Super Sprout™ for bread flour
- use Sugar in the Raw in place of regular granulated sugar
- add extra liquid to make up for the thirstiness of the flour.
NOTE: I’m writing this recipe to reflect the amount of liquid I will be using next time I make these muffins.
Check King Arthur’s English mufin recipe to see what your dough should look like.
Have mercy, you guys. The cooking is a bit of work, but the flavor payoff is totally worth it. I think you’ll love these whole wheat English muffins! If you’d like to try out the Super Sprout™ for yourself, you can order it from Lindley Mills.
NOTE: Most of my recipes are written by weight and not volume, even the liquids. Even though I try to provide you with volume measurements as well, I encourage you to buy a kitchen scale for ease of measuring, accuracy, and consistency.
This is the scale I use, love, and recommend:
I really hope you love this recipe for sprouted wheat English muffins, you guys! If you make it, please share a photo with me, either in the PCO Facebook Group or on instagram by tagging @onlinepastrychef and using hashtag #pcorecipe. Thanks, and enjoy!
For the Dough
- 17-18 oz (2 cups, 2 Tablespoons- 2 1/4 cups) lukewarm milk (I used whole milk)
- 3 Tablespoons softened unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 Tablespoons sugar, (I used demerara, or Sugar in the Raw)
- 19 oz Lindley Mills Super Sprout Whole Wheat Flour for Baking, (or other bread flour--reduce milk to 14-15 oz)
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast, (instant is fine here too)
- semolina or farina, (Cream of Wheat) for sprinkling on the griddle
- Combine all the dough ingredients in the order given in the bowl of your stand mixer.
- Mix with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until shiny, smooth and very elastic.
- Scrape the dough into a ball in the bottom of the mixer bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 2 hours.
- Generously sprinkle your griddle or skillets or electric frying pans or whatever you're using with the farina or semolina (I used semolina. King Arthur says you can use either without any problem). Set them aside.
- Portion dough into 16 equal portions (or 12 for burger buns). I do this by weighing my finished dough and then dividing that weight by the number of portions. Then I use my bench knife and scale to cut the dough and weigh out each portion.
- Once you have your dough scaled, gently shape each portion into a flat-ish round about 3" in diameter. Place in the prepared pan/s. They can be close together, but you don't want them to touch.
- If you only have one pan to cook in, place the extra rounds on a parchment-lined and semolina-dusted cookie sheet and cover them until it's their turn.
- Cover the shaped muffins (on the griddle and on the cookie sheet, if you needed "overflow" space), and allow them to rest 20-30 minutes, until just slightly puffy.
- Remove the towel, turn the heat on medium low and gently cook the muffins for several minutes on each side. I flipped mine multiple times after an initial 7-ish minutes a side. Regulate the heat so they don't cook too quickly and watch them carefully. The semolina will eventually get dark but should insulate the muffins enough to keep them from burning as long as you set your heat fairly low.
- Every once in a while, go in through the side of a couple of muffins to check the internal temperature. You want them to reach 200F.
- This took me 40 minutes, more or less, but it will most likely take you less time since you're using more liquid than I did. Just keep an eye on them and make sure you have a good instant read thermometer.
- Remove to cool on racks. Split the muffins with a fork before toasting. Enjoy with sweet or savory toppings.
If you find that your muffins are headed towards too brown before they reach 200F on the inside, put them on a tray and bake them at 350 for about 10 minutes to ensure they're baked all the way through. (Thanks, King Arthur, for always giving great tips!)
- Pastry Chef Online-Approved Instant Read Thermometer
- Escali Primo Digital Kitchen Scale
- Lodge 10" Cast Iron Skillet
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Nutrition InformationYield 16 Serving Size 1 muffin
Amount Per ServingCalories 167 Total Fat 4g Saturated Fat 2g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 2g Cholesterol 21mg Sodium 234mg Carbohydrates 26g Fiber 2g Sugar 2g Protein 7g
And there you have it friends: whole wheat English muffins you will not want to stop eating. I mean:
Thanks so much for spending some time with me today. I’m happy to take reader requests like these sprouted wheat English muffins. Just let me know what you’d like me to make!
Take care, and have a lovely day.