100% Whole Wheat Honey Pita on the Gas Grill (NEW VIDEO)– Michelle Obama’s LetsMove.gov initiative

As a doctor, I’m constantly being asked whether you can eat bread without gaining weight.  The evidence suggests that you can maintain a healthy weight by limiting your energy intake, whether your diet’s low-carb, low-fat, or has a balanced limitation of calories.  There’s no evidence that limiting calories from carbohydrates (like bread) is better than limiting it in fat or anywhere else.  I bake and eat lots of bread, and I don’t gain weight, even though I spend lots of time testing bread recipes for our books and website.  There’s some evidence that whole grain breads, like this 100% Whole Wheat Pita with Honey, are a better choice than refined white breads.

So I’ve been following Michelle Obama’s initiative to tackle childhood obesity: LetsMove.gov.  I keep hoping she’ll answer my e-mail about getting kids to bake the whole-grain breads for their families.  I may have to keep waiting on that one.  About this recipe…

The dough for this pita is from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, basically a variation on our Whole Grain Master.  Just omit the white flour, and increase the whole wheat to 7 cups (2 pounds/910 grams).  Decrease the water to 3 1/4 cups, and add 1/2 cup honey with the liquid ingredients.  As I show in the video, use a rolling pin and a dough scraper to get the dough thin (1/8-inch thick).

Because of the honey in this dough, it needs gentle heat– play with the grill controls to preheat a half-inch thick stone to 350 degrees F (that will take about a half hour).  I light all available burners under the stone.  If you go hotter, the honey in the dough will cause scorching.  Rolling to about 1/8-inch thick, the pita took about 12 minutes to bake, seven on the first side, then flipping to the second.  I use a gas grill pretty similar to the Weber Spirit E-210 (my model isn’t made anymore).  It’s tough to re-create these results with charcoal, but I know that some of you have been experimenting with it.

No excuse to quit baking bread in the summertime.  Some other ideas we’ve posted on:

Grilled pizza:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=237

Pumpernickel done on the grill:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=245

Rustic fruit tart on the gas grill:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=267

Brioche on a grill:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=294

Bread on a Coleman stove while camping:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=318

Kohlrabi Greens Pizza right on the grates:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=846

Fruit pizza on the grill baked with the stone:  https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=248

Grilled flatbread, workhorse summer bread: https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=768

Stay in touch with us on:

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Twitter: www.Twitter.com/ArtisanBreadIn5

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57 thoughts to “100% Whole Wheat Honey Pita on the Gas Grill (NEW VIDEO)– Michelle Obama’s LetsMove.gov initiative”

  1. Jeff, thanks for the entertaining, laid-back and inoformative vid clip. I love sesame seeds on breads and I had these types of pita bread recently as well.

  2. I just saw the recipe for the kohlrabi greens pizza. That looks awesome. We also have a CSA from Featherstone farms. I didn’t realize you guys were from MN. That makes me SO happy!!! I don’t know why. 😉 I have your healthy breads book. I’m a lousy baker, but NOT any more. The last two loaves have come out awesome! I can bake now. How exciting! That’s for the book. Keep the videos and recipes coming. I love to get your messages on fb. Thanks!
    -Melissa Carey

    1. Melissa: Hi neighbor!

      Glad the recipes are working for you, come back anytime with questions. Jeff

  3. Hi Jeff,

    Did you know your first book made the King Arthur email? Yes, along with all the other wonderful things that make our life simpler when baking (stone, doubh wisk, etc).

    Love the video but someone should proof it – minutes spelled wrong on one screen while you you were out. (One of my hats is tech editing *G*)

  4. I have a quick question about the gluten free naan. I have made it again and again so many times and I really really like it. However, I am wondering if there is any other ways that I can make a soft flat bread with this dough without it having a such a hard and crunchy crust -in the oven rather than stove top? What happened to Jeff’s crust for the pita bread happens to mine as well and I would rather my flatbread to be soft if possible. Also could I use the brioche recipe to make gluten free croissants?

    1. Hi Vanessa,

      You can achieve a softer crust just by turning down the heat in your pan. It will take a bit longer to cook, but it should avoid the crust. We are working on lots of g-f flatbreads for our new book as well.

      Croissants require that you layer in butter to the dough. This is a process that takes more than 5 minutes a day and requires that you handle the dough a lot. I have not yet tried it with the g-f doughs, but it would be an interesting project.

      Thanks, Zoe

  5. Hi. I have both of your books and I’ve been having a wonderful time making all kinds of bread. That’s all we use now…for everything. Pita is on the menu for tonight’s dinner. I’ve been gradually incorporating more whole wheat into my lean dough batches. We’re at the point where I’d like it to be 50/50 AP and WW (King Arthur, by weight). None of the recipes in the book really match that configuration. I’ve been using a total of 32 ounces of flour and keeping the amount of yeast and salt the same as your master recipe. Can you give a little guidance for the proportion of water and vital wheat gluten? Thanks so much.

    1. Wendy: This is a recipe we’re working on for the 3rd bk, publisher will kill me if I print it here. The range for VWG will be 1/8 to 1/4 cup, depending on your flours and your taste. As for the water– increase it to the point where dough’s consistency is about what you see in our videos, and in our original recipe which you’ve tried already. Jeff

  6. Can I bake this bread in a traditional bread pan instead of on a stone? I would like to use it for sandwiches, and the loaf shape suits that better.

  7. You mentioned that the honey in this recipe scorch at high temps. Will I have that problem with a regular loaf on my stone in the oven at 450 for 30 minutes as indicated in the book? If so, what do you suggest?

    1. Hi Stacia,

      The honey, or any other kind of sugar will caramelize at high temperatures, so the bread tends to brown faster. Just keep an eye on it and I think you should be fine to bake the bread at 450 degrees. If it looks like it is getting too dark, too fast you can drop the temperature to 425 and bake for a few extra minutes.

      Thanks, Zoe

  8. Finally, I see you screw up baking the way I do. I almost always drip something on the peel. Thanks for the tip. I can’t wait to make this for breakfast.

  9. I really enjoyed the video (ok, I laughed out loud) and I love that you keep bringing great breads into our homes!!!
    Eagerly awaiting the third book! (and the fourth… and so on…)

  10. I’m sorry Jeff, I have Artisan Bread in five minutes a day, and without reading it cover to cover, I can’t find it. Please adcise

  11. Dianna: In ABin5, there are loaf pan directions for 100% Whole Wheat Sandwich bread in Chapter 6. Those directions will work well for this dough as well. Jeff

  12. Hi Jeff and Zoe,

    Re: grilling breads. I wish you would do more breads without a stone on the grill. Mine is a split grill, with 2 lids and separate fires. While it’s great for small batches of foods, I can’t fit a stone on it. Each side is 10″ x 18″

    I found a toaster size stone at Pampered Chef, but they don’t recommend it on the grill. They said that an oven puts even heat on the stone from top and bottom, but the grill puts high heat on the bottom only, which can cause it to burst.

    Zoe was right in that a 10″ flat cast iron pan got my experimental pita black on the bottom. Maybe I shouldn’t heat the cast iron pan up first?

    I would love alternatives to a stone, cooking without a stone, cooking with my cast iron flat skillet, and can I use a non-glazed tile?

    By the way, I had an oven fire from making the caramel sticky buns recipe. It bubbled over while baking–I stepped out a few minutes and some caramel got onto the electric heating element. I came back to see a small fire!

    After I got the fire out, I put a pan underneath the buns to finish baking and got tons of smoke when more caramel bubbled out and baked onto the baking sheet..
    Our alarm went off, the alarm company and I couldn’t reach each other because we were calling each other, fire dept on the way, …. the whole bit.

    I had the oven serviced and cleaned by the appliance company. They said ANY spill can cause a fire.
    I am telling you this as a safety measure for others.

    1. Hi Judy,

      I’m so sorry to hear about your oven fire and all the ensuing ordeal. Thank goodness you were not hurt. It is probably safer for you to bake anything that can possibly drip on a baking sheet to prevent this. Thank you for sharing your story with everyone!

      Have you seen this video about baking in a pot on the grill? https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=1889

      Thanks, Zoë

  13. Loved your video message to the Obamas. If you’re not invited to the Whitehouse soon (for I know you will be), you are always welcome at our house. In Miami it’s mi casa es su casa. Loved to have you come to Miami and help us with the 5 minute bread. Peace

  14. Very down-to-earth video that makes it seem like anyone can do this…even those of us who can’t cook!

    The container you use to make the bread in your first video…do you use a 6qt or can you use a 4qt? I like the concept better than my HUGE bowl that takes up almost a whole shelf! Thanks!

    1. Barrie: 4 quart is pushing your luck, may have to scoop some out as it surges. Or sometimes not. Five quart is plenty, though the bucket in the video is 6.

      Definitely easier than a mixing bowl. Jeff

  15. Hi Jeff,
    I just got diagnosed with diverticulitis, so I got a copy of HBin5, & am switching to high fiber. At my job there was a blood drive & the signup flier tried to discourage high fiber consumption on the ground that it would reduce iron content in the blood.

    Question: Is that right & could you substitute blackstrap molasses in this recipe to fix that ?


    1. Bob: I really can’t answer specific health questions here on the site. Best sources for this kind of question would be a website like mayoclinic.com.

      But check with your family doctor first– if you’re not iron deficient, this probably just isn’t an issue. Jeff

  16. Hi Jeff,
    I am so glad you contacted Michelle Obama.
    I’ve had an interest in nutrition for a long time. I’ve often wondered why we don’t generally use healthier breads. One way to do that is to incorporate bean flours, like lentils or garbanzos. Other cultures do. Lentils are one of the healthiest foods on the planet.

    For breakfast, I’ve started using red lentils, which I recently discovered at my local health food store, and cook them with my steel cut oats for extra protein and fiber as well as other nutrients. I cook with a few shakes of turmeric and salt and serve with a pat of organic butter. The lentils dissolve and you can’t tell they’re in there.

    How about creating a bread recipe with cooked red lentils or pureed regular lentils or garbanzo beans or garbanzo flour. Now that would be a nutritious bread to suggest to Michelle Obama. Great for children as well as adults.

  17. Hi Jeff and Zoe,

    Thanks for getting back to me. I’ll start pricing out the enameled cast iron pans, I guess. It looks like my breads burn quickly on my cast iron griddle.

    The other issue is that it’s HOT and humid out there. My grill is in the sun. I don’t understand why I would want to go out in the heat in the summer to bake bread or grill anything in 100 degree heat. Our hottest part of the day is at the end of the day.

    Guess I will wait till it cools down. Meanwhile, I am going to experiment with less yeast and longer rise times to improve flavor.
    Thanks, Judy

  18. Zoe, I watched the video. Big Lots has a Paula Dean 3.5 enameled cast iron pot and lid for $30. Would that size work ok?

    Otherwise, how about the Lodge preseasoned cast iron 5 qt dutch oven for the same price.


  19. Judy: Either pot will work, but you’ll use both as a sort of oven within an oven, as in Zoe’s pictures on this. I use a really small one… about 1 1/2 quarts, which has the added benefit of containing sideways spread if the dough’s a little too wet or too aged. Jeff

  20. I’m sorry if you already answered this but I can’t find it.When I put cornmeal on the parchment for overnight resting in the fridge, I can’t get the parchment off the bread after it is baked. Ideas?

    1. Nina: Hmm. What brand of parchment are you using?

      Another thing to try is overnight rise in a greased, non-stick loaf pan. But that doesn’t help for the free-form loaves.

      Any chance your dough is too wet? Are you measuring with scoop-and-sweep (our way), or the “spoon-and-sweep” method, which yields too light a cup?

      Are you using bleached flour, which yields too wet a dough? Jeff

  21. Jeff,
    I weigh all my ingredients and have very good luck with counter rising on cornmeal. I’m using Trader Joe’s white whole wheat and unbleached all purpose flours. The parchment might be a cheap brand: it’s called “Good Cook”. I am using cornmeal on the parchment, and when it has sat overnight it turns very hard.
    Also, I recently viewed your video in which you rolled dried cranberries and brown sugar into the dough. Again, using the whole wheat master recipe, I left it in the fridge, but this time without any cornmeal, just flour. The sugar liquified and ran out, so once again my parchment had to be cut off the bread but the bread itself was wonderful.
    I like the rise I get when leaving it overnight so I’d like to be able to get this wrinkle ironed out.

    1. Hi Nina,

      I’m not sure if you have tried a silpat mat under the dough, which would solve the problem of sticking to the bottom of the dough?

      Thanks! Zoë

  22. Jeff and Zoe,
    PLEASE recommend a good pizza peel to me. What do either of you use personally? We are stationed overseas in Germany and frankly, finding speicific items can be challenging, whether on the local economy (because I don’t know where to look) or online (because I can’t see it in person). I just ordered both of your books and a pizza stone, and would like to get a good peel on the way as well. Thanks for your help!

  23. Thank you so much Jeff for replying so quickly; I can’t wait to get started with this bread! I did also want to ask your opinion on shipping bread in the mail. My husband is currently deployed and I thought it would be great to share all the fantastic bread I will be making with him. The mail takes about a week to get there. Do you have any suggestions on packaging methods or a particular recipe that may stay fresh longer?

    Thanks again,


    1. Hi Mariah,

      How wonderful that you want to ship your husband the bread you are baking! You will want to bake something that is hearty and full of whole grains, which tend to keep longer than breads made with all white flour. Breads with a touch of honey or sweetener also tend to stay fresh longer.

      I fear in this hot weather the breads may end up getting mold before they make it to him and you might want to try this once the weather cools off a bit, unless there is a way to get it there in just a couple of days. That is the only drawback to baking homemade fresh breads without preservatives, they are a touch more fragile.

      Thank you and thank your husband for his service! Zoë

  24. I tried the master recipe today from the first book and it was such a blast to be a part of the whole process. Just one question though, how thick is the crust supposed to be? Mine cracked right off and was atleast 1/8″ thick. How do you achieve a glossy thin crust? Also, I think I reduced the salt to much, becuase it had absolutely no flavor. I could smell the yeast, but couldn’t taste it. Kind of a strange sensation. I reduced the salt becuase I didn’t have course salt; by only 1/4 tsp.

    Thanks for all the advise, from the pizza peel to shipping the bread!

    By the way, do you think that pecan buns would ship ok if it was winter?

    I love this baking method! Gave me such satisfaction so see my dough rise and then bake up with nice wholes all inside.

  25. After having so much fun making the first batch of dough I decided to just go for it again with more salt. In reading the directions at 2 in the afternoon, rather than at 10:30 at night, I realized that I put in a teaspoon of salt, rather than a tablespoon, and my mistakes did not stop there… What supprised me however, is that the bread’s consistancy was still great, making this recipe no fail for even the biggest of fools! Thanks again, Mariah

    Can’t wait to see how this batch turns out

    1. Mariah: If you’re still having crust trouble, a few things to do:

      1. Check oven temp w/something like https://bit.ly/czmco2
      2. Using steam, or some steam alternative? Like covering with spraying with water, using aluminum foil lasagne pan, baking in a covered pot, or a cloche? Posts on this:

      Baking in a Dutch Oven: https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=552

      Aluminum Roasting Pan for Crust: https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=510

      Cloche baking: https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=566

  26. Update: The master recipe turned out with good crumb and a shiny crust. I brushed water on the top before it finished cooking, just in case the water in the pan wasn’t doing the trick, and I got my shine! I also decided to make the 100% Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread on pg 76 and boy did it turn out GREAT!!! I did decrease the yeast to 1T and the initial rise was a lot steadier, taking exactly three hours. I got this tip from the high alt. postings. Even though I am only at 1500 ft here in Germany, ALL of my baking is better when I use the adaptations for high altitude. Never had that problem state side. I wonder what it is?!

    My 3 year old and I were eating this bread like cake! The honey is a good flavor booster. It has the same “hole” pattern as the store bought whole wheat that I have on my counter, but it has a better flavor and almost melts in your mouth!

    Is it possible to add seeds to this bread? I was just wondering how it would affect the overall integrity of the dough? I wanted to know what the shelf life is after baking as well if you don’t mind me asking (I don’t mean to hog the board or your time).

    Thanks again for these great recipes, before your book I was sure that yeast and I were sworn enemies!


    1. Mariah: Seeds are no problem, a tablespoon or two in the full batch will make little difference to dough consistency.

      Shelf life for fresh home-baked stuff, without preservatives or dough conditioners, is short. I try to eat everything within 24 hours at the absolute outside. Usually it’s gone within 8! Jeff

  27. Zoe,
    I just wanted to tell you that I sent my husband the whole wheat sandwhich bread (and jars of jelly and peanut butter) and it made it fine to Afghanistan!! yay… Thanks for the tips, I think it got there in 5-6 days.

    I love the whole wheat bread recipe and so do my neighbors. I also enjoyed the olive oil dough for my pizza the other night. Can’t wait to make some sticky buns soon. Thanks again you guys!

    By the way, this book is going to be everyone’s Christmas present this year, and they will get it early!

    1. Mariah: Love the image of the bread making it’s way so far, glad it brightened his day over there… and please thank him for his service. Jeff

    1. Love: I’m having a blast making these videos, and even though they’re actually less work than photo spreads, they may be even more valuable, since you get the action in real time. Glad you’re liking them…

  28. Hi,
    I have made almost every recipe in the first book and they have truly been great and ” forgiving.” once i even ran out of gas for the stove and the bread came out fine! But, i have had problems with the pita and hope you can help:
    i only have access to bleached flour and i am at 4,500 elevation (never has seemed to make a difference before) but the pita came out flat, stiff, no pocket and very wet dough that i did have to add more flour to work with, especially for rolling it out. Maybe it was too thin and overbaked at 7 minutes? Help please.

    1. Nina: When you swap in bleached for unbleached, the protein’s too low, and that’s the substance that absorbs water. So you’ll just need to decrease the water, maybe 1/4-cup? Jeff

  29. butter is better on fresh bread if you let it set out on the counter until room temp. breads wonderfully. in a glass butter dish with lid real butter can set on the counter for a week or more without spoiling. i keep my butter in the freg but i put a stick in my glass dish and leave on the counter year round. love your vedios.

  30. My grandfather is diabetic and needs to eat low carb bread. Unfortunately, it is very expensive. I make your boule bread weekly, if not more often, and would love to have an option available to him when he visits. Do you have a low carb version? I saw your low carb pita bread, but I’m looking for something more along the lines of a boule bread dough that could be used for pizza, breadsticks, etc.

    1. Alicia: You can use that pita dough for loaves… but it’s not all that low in carbs. If you make a no-added sweetener 100% whole grain bread from our second book, you’ll have lower carb…

      … but bread is carbohydrate. Unless you keep the portion size low, there’s significant carbohydrate in there. We don’t have anything we specifically bill as low-carb. But the 100% whole grains are the lowest we do.


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