Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Healthy Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Bread!

I used to say I didn't care for bread.  Like many others I grew up on white bread and the occassional loaf of Italian bread (which is a totally different story).  In the past few years I have discovered a world of breads and lo and behold have found that I love bread (much like Bear).  The problem with this new found love is that we are watching carefully what we eat and sandwiches can be not the healthiest choice.  Last year I started making wraps for lunch with the occasional purchase of pita bread thrown in.  The wraps worked for a while but became boring.  As for the purchased pita bread, I struggled with it.  I had the worst time trying to slice it open to stuff the pita.  They broke, they cracked, I sliced through the side..you name it, it happened.

Sunday morning I realized we were out of bread and whole wheat tortillas.  We were in emergency status!  I had toyed with the idea of making flatbread before but my timing was never right so I decided to google whole wheat pita recipes.  I found the most wonderful, easy to make, tasty pita recipe at  http://food.com/!  One of the best features of the food.com website is the ability to adjust the number of portions.  There is this great box at the top of the recipe and you can either make it more or less and they do all the math for you!  There are no pictures...something happened to the ones I took with my phone..there was even one I staged of my lunch.  It was a beautiful, whole wheat pita stuffed with curried chicken salad, lettuce and a fantastic tasting tomato.

Healthy Whole Wheat Pitas
    • 4 cups whole wheat flour ( or 2 cups whole wheat flour and 2 cups all-purpose flour)
    • 1 tablespoon dry yeast
    • 1 1/4 cups warm water ( 120-130F degrees)
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 500°F.
  2. Sift together 2 cups of flour and the yeast.
  3. Add water and salt and mix well.
  4. Gradually add in the remaining flour just until the dough begins to clean the sides of the bowl. Once this happens, stop adding flour (so, you might not use all the flour the recipe calls for.).
  5. Knead the dough for about 4 or 5 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic. (While you're kneading, you can get creative and add in some herbs or spices, but only if you want to do that). Be careful not to over-knead the dough.
  6. Form dough into 10 balls.
  7. On a floured surface, roll each ball into a 5-6 inch circle, about 1/4 inch thick. (Be sure to sprinkle a little flour on both sides to prevent sticking).
  8. Place on a non-stick baking sheet and allow to rise 30 minutes, or until slightly raised.
  1. Just before you place the pan in the oven, flip each pita over on its other side.
  2. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven for 5 minutes. (The instant hot heat will help them puff up).
  3. When the pitas come out of the oven they will be hard, but they will soften as the cool.
  4. Store them, while they're still warm, in plastic baggies or an airtight container.
  5. Cut the pitas in half crosswise and stuff with your favorite fillings (beans and rice, taco fixings, thick stews, curries - anything goes).
Pitas can be reheated in a 350°F oven or in the microwave
Don't panic if you do not need as much flour as the recipe calls for.  I may have used 3 cups for my dough.  I believe it may have something to do with the temperture and humidity.  I also did not heat the oven up right way instead waiting until closer to the baking time.One great tip in the reviews for this recipe was to place the pitas on a dishcloth and cover with a second dishcloth when you raise them.  This will allow you to simply flip the pita onto your hand before placing it upside down on the baking sheet.  I covered my baking sheet with aluminum foil and sprayed it with some non-stick spray I buy at the Dollar Tree.  I kept waiting for the pita's to sink back down like my Yorkshire pudding does but..they don't!


  1. WooHoo! Yay mommmy lady!

    The different amount of flour is related to humidity, mostly. Flour absorbs water from the air and surroundings, so flour stored in the freezer needs less flour per cup of water, and stored in a cupboard with high humidity needs more flour per cup of water--'cause there's already water in there.

  2. That makes perfectly good sense! The flour has been vacationing in the refridgerator so less flour needed. I could store it in the freezer but...there is no room! The recipe suggested added fresh herbs to the dough and Michael suggested basil from the garden. MMMM...fresh basil pitas with tomatoes and fresh mozzarella?

  3. Now you're just being mean.


  4. There are only 2 pitas left in the fridge. I am tempted to trek into the backyard between rain bands and grab some basil to try the basil pita idea! My only other concern is the power going off. It has been up and down since noon with the wind.