Rugbrød (Danish Rye Bread)

Rugbrød is a delicious and nutritious sourdough bread hailing from Denmark. It’s a no-knead bread that’s super easy to make! It’s packed with wholegrains and fibre and is very low in fat. (It may well be the healthiest thing I ever bake on this blog…)


The loaf is traditionally baked in a long rectangular Rugbrød tin, supposedly 13 x 4 x 4 inches in size. Luckily, I have a multi-size cake tin so I was able to adjust the tin to suit the desired shape. It’s a couple of inches short in length but it’s what you do with the loaf that counts. I suggest you slice it thinly, slather it generously with salty butter and compile an open-top sandwich (smørrebrød) with your favourite toppings.


A lot of recipes that I found suggested rye kernels or cracked rye but I found these ingredients impossible to get hold of in the UK! In the end, I settled for whole rye grains which I soaked overnight beforehand. I was really happy with the texture of the end result as it was pretty to similar to the Rugbrød I’d tasted in Copenhagen.



This recipe is super easy but it does take time. It’s easy to prepare outside of ‘work hours’ and my suggested time frame is as follows: soak your rye grains in the morning of Day One. Mix your ingredients together in the evening of Day One. Leave your dough to ferment in the fridge overnight. Place the dough mix in the tin on the morning of Day Two. Leave to rise in the fridge. Bake the bread on the evening of Day Two. Leave to cool overnight and enjoy on Day Three!

  • 200 g sourdough starter
  • 275 g dark rye flour
  • 300 g wholemeal flour
  • 300 g rye grain (soak overnight in 225g of the water)
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 80 g linseeds
  • 50 g sunflower seeds
  • 50 g pumpkin seeds
  • 650 g water
  • rolled oats (for sprinkling)


  1. Weigh out 225g from your 650g of water and soak the rye grains for 6-8 hours or overnight.
  2. Grease and line a 13 x 4 x 4-inch bread tin (or large loaf tin!) and set aside.
  3. Add the soaked rye grains (including the soaking liquid) to the rest of the ingredients. Thoroughly mix everything together. Leave to rise for 6-8 hours or overnight.
  4. Smooth the dough into the tin and level it out with the back of a wet spoon. Leave to rise until the dough has reached the top of the tin. This took about 4 hours for me, but times may vary. You can slow the process in the fridge for 6-8 hours or overnight.
  5. Pierce the dough 20 times with a thin skewer.
  6. Scatter with rolled oats and place into a preheated oven at 200°C for 1 hour 15mins or until a skewer comes out clean.
  7. Cover with a tea-towel and leave to cool.


  • You will need an active sourdough starter for this recipe! If you don’t have one then click here to see the recipe I referred to when creating this post.
  • This recipe has been altered from My Danish Kitchen.
  • The loaf will keep for 1-2 weeks, or freeze for up to 6 months.
  • If the bread browns quickly then simply cover the bread with a piece of baking parchment.

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