Recipe summary

Hands-on time:
15 mins. to 25 mins.
Baking time:
21 mins. to 25 mins.
Total time:
2 hrs 36 mins. to 3 hrs 50 mins.
Yield:
12 buns
These soft, tender buns feature some of Canada's most important grain crops: wheat, oats, and flax. The addition of canola oil adds another touch of the North: canola oil, made from rapeseed, was originally developed in Canada as a special, lower-acid vegetable oil. In fact, its name is an acronym: CANadian Oil, Low Acid.

These buns are a perfect whole-grain alternative to the squishy white rolls usually offered at cookouts. Looking to increase your fiber and vitamin intake in a tasty way? This recipe's for you.

Note: Some people don't like the taste of canola oil in baked goods. If that's you, simply substitute any vegetable oil for the canola oil.
Volume Ounces Grams

Buns

  • 2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or King Arthur Unbleached Bread Flour
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick oats)
  • 1 cup King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour or Premium Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 cup whole flax meal
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil or melted butter
  • 1 large egg yolk, white reserved for topping
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup orange juice*
  • 3/4 to 7/8 cup lukewarm water**
  • *Orange juice won't add its own flavor to the rolls, but will mellow any potential bitterness in the whole wheat.
  • **Use the greater amount of liquid in winter or in drier climates; the lesser amount in summer, or in a humid environment.

Topping

  • 1 large egg white, reserved from dough, whisked with 2 tablespoons cold water
  • rolled oats and/or flax seeds, for topping

Directions

  1. 1) Combine all of the ingredients, and mix until cohesive. Cover the bowl, and let the dough rest for 20 minutes, to give the whole grains a chance to absorb some of the liquid. Then knead — by hand, stand mixer, or bread machine — to make a smooth, soft, elastic dough.
  2. 2) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, or in an 8-cup measure (so you can track its progress as it rises), and let it rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until it's risen noticeably. It won't necessarily double in bulk.
  3. 3) Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into 12 pieces (about 70g each). Shape each piece into a round ball; use your fingers to pull and flatten each ball into a circle about 3" across.
  4. 4) Place the buns on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet, cover, and let rise for about 90 minutes, until noticeably puffy. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350F.
  5. 5) Brush the buns with the egg white/water mixture. Sprinkle with oats and/or flax seeds.
  6. 6) Bake the buns for 21 to 25 minutes, until they're golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and transfer them to a rack to cool.
  7. 7) Wrap completely cooled buns airtight, and store at room temperature for several days; freeze for longer storage.
  8. Yield: 12 buns.