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Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Bread

This soft, delicious pita bread is oil-free, easy, and the perfect pair with homemade hummus and a Greek salad!

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mediterranean
Keyword oil-free, pita bread, whole wheat
Prep Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Servings 16 pitas
Author Faithful Plateful

Ingredients

  • 5 cups whole wheat flour (or a combination of bread flour and whole wheat flour)
  • 4 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp dry yeast
  • 2 tbsp honey or sugar
  • 2 cups warm water

Instructions

  1. In a glass liquid measuring cup, stir together the 2 cups warm water with the honey and yeast. Let sit for about 5 minutes until foamy.

  2. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of the flour with salt.

  3. Stir the water mixture in the bowl with flour, and beat vigorously for 3 minutes with a wooden spoon. It's a good workout! Gradually stir in the remaining 3 cups of the flour.

  4. Turn the dough out onto a clean counter top and set a timer for 6 minutes. Knead dough for 6 minutes.

  5. Shape the dough into a flat disk. Using a knife or a dough cutter, cut the disk into even fourths, then eighths, then sixteenths to form 16 even pieces. Roll the pieces into little balls, and cover with a towel. Let rest for at least 30 minutes, up to 1 hour.

  6. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. If you have a pizza stone, preheat it with the oven.

  7. Use the palm of your hand to flatten each ball into a disk. Finish with a rolling pin, flattening the dough into a disk about 6 inches in diameter and ¼ inch thick. Their thinness is more important than making them perfectly round. Irregularity adds charm, I always say.

  8. Place each round on a square of foil or a pizza stone, and carefully place 3 or 4 of the pita breads directly on the oven rack (not on a pan). Bake 4-5 minutes, or until they are puffed.When you remove them from the oven, stack them up and put them immediately into a plastic bag. This keeps the dough soft while the tops fall, leaving the pocket in the center! 

Recipe Notes

Tips for getting your pita to puff up and create a pocket: if you have time, let the dough rise for 60 minutes instead of 30. 

If you don't get a pocket using 100% whole wheat flour, use 1 or 2 cups of white bread flour, as whole wheat is heavier and has a harder time rising. 

Make sure to set your oven all the way to 500 degrees and let it preheat for about 30 minutes before you start cooking your bread. 

Even if your pitas don't rise the first time, the bread will still be delicious, and you can just fold it like a taco to get a pocket. Keep trying with these tips and you'll have pita pockets in no time!