Soft and fluffy Whole Wheat hamburger buns, perfect for a burger or sandwich! These are quick hamburger buns made of 100% whole wheat flour! Homemade hamburger buns are wholesome and easy to make from scratch!
This Whole wheat hamburger bun recipe is best with our beef patties or Venison Burgers! However, you can fill these bread rolls with fried chicken, or cold-cut meats. Hamburger buns this fluffy can be used for so many different sandwiches! Try our Multi-grain Buns with potato flakes and a healthy rolled oats topping or our classic hamburger buns for variation.
Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns:
This is a family favorite recipe for whole wheat hamburger buns! They are the best hamburger buns because not only are they healthy hamburger buns made with 100% whole wheat flour but they are light, super soft, and extremely fluffy! For whole wheat, they are incredible hamburger buns!
I make 100% Whole Wheat hamburger buns with wheat berries that I grind at home using my grain mill. For more about how I make my own whole wheat flour check out my post talking all about my favorite grains and how to use them. All my organic grains are from Azure Standard. You can still make hamburger buns using store-bought whole wheat flour.
Ingredients for Whole Wheat Buns:
This whole wheat hamburger bun recipe does call for lecithin and wheat gluten which can be purchased and shipped straight to your house from my favorite organic health store-Azure Standard. These ingredients will last you a while since you only use a spoonful for a batch, but they make bread super soft!
- Warm water- about 98-105°F.
- Olive oil- this is a good extra virgin olive oil to cook with.
- Honey- raw honey is the best. You can substitute honey whole wheat hamburger buns with agave, maple syrup, or granulated sugar.
- Sea salt- choose a good quality sea salt.
- Eggs- add richness, color, and structure to the dough.
- Lecithin- helps even out the distribution of ingredients in the dough, stabilizes fermentation, increases volume, protects yeast cells in the dough when frozen, and acts as a releasing agent to prevent sticking. It enhances the quality of the dough. The best substitute for lecithin is an egg. I like to use sunflower lecithin but you can buy soy lecithin.
- Wheat Gluten- helps the dough to rise, and stabilizes the bread shape improving the texture. You only need a teaspoon here and the dough turns out very soft and pliable.
- Dry Active Yeast- is activated once it gets mixed with warm water. You can use baker’s yeast or instant in the same amount.
- Whole Wheat Flour- hard wheat berries are the best wheat berries to grind to make whole wheat bread flour. I like to mix hard red wheat with hard white wheat. A low-gluten wheat flour from soft wheat can tear easily. You can substitute whole wheat flour from the store. King Arthur's whole wheat flour is made from hard red.
How To Make Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns:
This homemade hamburger buns recipe is super easy to make and rises, quickly thanks to the amount of dry active yeast! You do not need a hamburger bun pan, the key to evenly shaped buns is to divide the dough into balls and then flatten the tops. This will help them rise to keep their shape.
- Prepare the dough and let rise in bulk for 1 hour. I like to use my kitchen aid for kneading the dough. I’ll usually start at low speed and then knead over high once the flour is absorbed.
- Divide dough into small pieces. You should have 16 pieces if you cut the dough in half then each half into 8 pieces. Each dough ball should weigh around 3 oz. I like to do this on my pastry mat.
- Shape each piece into a ball and place it onto a large sheet pan. Slightly flatten the tops and allow the dough balls to rest for 30 minutes.
- Bake in a preheated 350°F for 12-15 minutes or until the bottoms are golden brown.
Baker’s Note: the dough will be very sticky when first kneading and will get slightly thicker after the 5-minute kneading time. A soft dough is key to fluffy buns, the fiber in freshly ground whole wheat flour soaks up the wet dough and absorbs better as it sits, making it pliable after rising.
Can You Make Bread Machine Hamburger Buns?
Hamburger buns in a bread machine are easy! Simply place all the ingredients in the order given straight into your bread machine pan. Select the dough settings and have it rise in the pan until doubled. After the rising time, transfer the dough onto a floured surface and shape and proceed with the recipe as instructed.
How To Toast Hamburger Buns:
There are 3 ways to toast hamburger buns, in the oven, skillet, or grill. My favorite way is a cast-iron pan or griddle. It just gets very hot and leaves charred edges on the bread surface. Toasting is a good idea, if your bread has gone a little stale or if you want to make it soft again.
Can You Freeze Hamburger Buns:
How to freeze hamburger buns? Hamburger buns freeze very well. The key to well-frozen buns is to freeze them the same day they were baked. Simply cool the buns in the pans and then arrange 8 buns into a gallon-sized freezer bag. Try to remove as much air out as possible to prevent frost and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. You can also freeze unbaked rolls on a pan first then transfer them to a freezer bag to bake later.
Frozen Baking Instructions: remove unbaked frozen dough balls and place them on a sheet pan. Proof them in a warm oven until risen and tripled in size. To warm the oven, turn it on for 5 minutes then turn it off. Boil 1 to 2 quarts of water. Pour water into a shallow pan placed on the lowest rack. Place the rolls in the oven. Let rise for about 1 hour, until it doubles in size. Watch closely so rolls do not rise too high. Leave in the oven and set to 350 degrees F. Bake 15-20 minutes until the bottoms are golden brown.
Homemade whole-wheat hamburger buns are super versatile! I make hot dog buns from the same dough and you can also make mini hamburger buns or sliders! Here are all the hamburger bun tips to transform large buns into way more!
- For mini hamburger buns or sliders: cut dough into 24 pieces, shape into balls, and place into a 15x10 pan to rise. Bake at 350°F for 10-15 minutes.
- For Hot Dog Buns: divide the dough into 21 pieces and roll them into 5-inch logs. Place on a sheet pan and rise for 20-30 minutes, then bake at 350°F for 10 minutes.
- For dinner rolls: substitute warm milk for the water and melted butter for the olive oil. Prepare dough like you would for sliders.
- Small Batch Whole Wheat hamburger buns: cut the recipe in half and use 1 egg yolk only. This makes 8 hamburger buns.
Toppings and Add-ins:
Make Whole Wheat hamburger buns light without any toppings or add in your favorite grains or seeds for a wholesome bite! Using a spray bottle is a must for toppings to adhere unless you want to brush an egg wash over them.
- Top with an Italian Herb and Cheese Topping
- Score and spray water over the tops then sprinkle rolled oats over the tops.
- Add sesame seeds to the tops or everything bagel seasoning
- Mix in 1/2 Tbsp of millet, flax seeds, and 2 Tbsp of sunflower seeds into the dough.
We love these light whole-wheat hamburger buns! Have you made this hamburger bun recipe? Comment below to tell us how you liked them!
Are Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns Healthy?
Whole wheat flour is a good source of insoluble fiber. Wheat is considered a cereal grain as it is a grass-cultivated grain. Grain in its natural, unprocessed whole grain form is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, oils, and protein. I like to make my own whole wheat flour using grains to ensure all these are present in my flour.
Tips for Making Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns:
- After bulk rising, I like to transfer my mass of dough onto a floured surface and gently knead it into a large ball before dividing. This makes a better-structured dough easy to work with.
- Use a bench scraper to cut the dough.
- The dough will start off very sticky, at the 5-minute kneading mark it should come together into a ball and release from the sides of the mixing bowl. Add an additional 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour if it doesn’t come together after 5 minutes.
- After kneading the dough will be tacky to the touch, however, after it rises the fiber will absorb and make the dough better in structure.
- Add 1/2 cup of ground flax seeds for nutrition-rich bread.
- Turn this dough into hot dog buns, sliders, or dinner rolls with my variations above.
- This is a very quick hamburger buns recipe, and can be shaped and baked in 40 minutes! The key to soft buns is to allow the dough to triple in size.
- Toast the inside of the buns to revive them before filling them.
How To Make Hamburger Buns:
Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns
- 1 Stand Mixer (5-quart Kitchen-aid is what I use)
- 1 Bench scraper (to cut the dough)
- 1 pastry mat (handy to shape and divide dough)
- 1 1/2 cups warm water (about 98-105°F)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 tsp sea salt
- 1 egg
- 2 Tbsp lecithin
- 1 tsp wheat gluten
- 2 Tbsp dry active yeast
- 4 1/4 cups whole wheat flour (freshly milled hard red and hard white wheat berries)
- Prepare Dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine all of the ingredients in the order given. Knead for 5 minutes and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour.
- Transfer dough to a floured surface and gently knead it into a big ball before dividing.
- Divide Into Small Pieces: cut the dough in half then cut each half into 8 equal pieces to make 16 pieces in total.
- Shape pieces into balls then place them onto a baking sheet and press down the tops to flatten. Allow them to rise in pans for 30 minutes or until tripled in size.
- Bake in the oven at 350°F for 12 minutes.
- Whole Wheat Flour- I like to use 2 parts of red wheat berries and 1 part of white wheat berries to mill my whole wheat flour. Basically, I run about 2 cups of hard red and about 1 cup of hard white through my mill.
- **Every 1 cup of wheat grain makes about 1 1/2 cups of flour.
- The dough needs to knead for about 5 minutes over high until it comes together and sticks off the sides. It will be tacky at first but gets thicker after the fiber soaks up the liquid.