Wholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread Buns






These wholegrain spelt and oat buns were first published on my blog, The Culinary Jumble, in August 2015 under the name of Swedish havrebullar. Although the name has been changed, the recipe remains almost the same (apart from using spelt flour instead of regular flour).

These delicious buns are made with oats along with both wholegrain and white spelt flour. They are based on a recipe for one of Sweden’s favorite breakfast buns, havrebuller (literally translated as oat buns). They have a wonderful nutty taste, and a crumb that is a little denser than bread made with white flour, as you might expect.



Spelt flour in bread

Spelt flour is a little unpredictable when making bread. It needs a lot of time and oodles of love and affection. Everything about baking spelt flour is done slowly. 

This is mainly due to the flour having less gluten than regular flour, which can cause the spelt to behave a little differently when being baked. For many years, I couldn’t figure out why my bread had blow outs and were lopsided. After some investigation, it appeared that I was rushing things. Once I slowed down, the appearance of my bread improved greatly. This means that the proofing time can take longer, and the baking time is extended (due to a lower oven temperature).

Spelt flour is also denser (even the white flour), and this is to be remembered before you bake any spelt bread. That said, if you handle spelt flour correctly, you can produce the softest bread. Even brioche.



Can I substitute the spelt flour with something else?

Yes. But why would you want to? Seriously though, I know most of you are drawn to my blog through the photos of the food. Perhaps you don’t have spelt flour at home, or have no inclination to try it. Therefore, all of my bread recipes are adapted so that you can use either regular or spelt flour.

Although spelt can behave a little differently in bread (as highlighted above), I adapt many recipes made with regular flour by just doing a straight swap. Just like this recipe for wholegrain spelt and oat buns.



Spelt is not gluten free

The main reason I started baking with spelt was because regular flour (and bread) caused my stomach to really bloat. I don’t appear to have this issue with spelt flour. Although most people are already aware, it is important to remember that spelt does contain gluten, so is not a gluten free alternative.


If you like brown bread, you’ll love these recipes:


Wholemeal spelt bread

Swedish rye and wholegrain loaf

Wholegrain tortillas

Wholemeal cinnamon toast bread


Wholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread Buns

Servings 12 buns


  • 250ml (1 cup) water
  • 65g (¾ cup) oats
  • 250ml (1 cup) milk
  • 7g (2 tsp) yeast (see note 2)
  • 50g (3½ tbs) butter
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 200g (1⅔ cups) wholegrain spelt flour (see note 1)
  • 300 to 400g (2½ - 3⅓ cups) white spelt flour (see note 1)
  • linseeds (to sprinkle)


  • Place the water and oats in a pan and gently heat until there is no water left (and it resembles porridge). Set to one side.
  • Heat the milk gently until lukewarm and add the dried yeast. Stir and leave for five minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and mix in the butter, slowly stirring until it all melts.
  • Add the oats/water mixture to the milk/yeast mixture and stir together. Pour into a large mixing bowl.
  • Add all of the wholegrain flour, and 300g (2½ cups) of the white flour.
  • Either work the dough together with your hands or use a stand mixer with the kneading tool (this is what I did).
  • Add more white flour, a little at a time until you are left with a dough that is still slightly tacky to the touch (but not sticky). Don't be too concerned with how much flour you use - the amount varies, so just use as much flour as you need.
  • Knead by hand (or in the stand mixer) for 5-10 minutes.
  • Cover with a tea-towel ,and leave in a warm place for 60-90 minutes (until doubled in size).
  • Knock back the dough, and quickly knead again.
  • Cover and leave for a second proofing for 60 minutes.
  • Form the dough into around 12 balls and place on a large baking tray lined with paper. Ensure you leave space in between them (they will continue to rise both before and after baking).
  • Brush some water over the tops, and sprinkle with linseeds (or any other seed you like - oats are also good).
  • Cover them once more, and preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
  • Bake in the lower part of the oven for around 20 minutes. The tops with be slightly brown, and they are ready when the bottoms sound hollow when tapped.
  • Allow to cool a little, but make sure you eat one warm, as they taste best straight from the oven. They will last one or two days on the counter top (they are amazing toasted), and the also freeze very well.


  1. You can use spelt or regular flour for this recipe (just use the same amounts).
  2. In Sweden we have something called dried yeast. It is used both in warm liquid to proof and also added directly to flour. I am aware that the US has two options for dried yeast, and I believe dry active yeast is the most similar to our dried yeast.
I have converted grams to cups/ounces/tablespoons using online converters. Although I have no reason to believe they are inaccurate, please be aware that I have not made the recipe with imperial measurements.
In addition, many ingredients are different in Europe compared to North America (and the rest of the world). I do all I can to offer possible alternatives and to ensure the best possible outcomes for everyone. However, results cannot always be guaranteed if you have not used the same ingredients, measurements or methods as me.
Lastly, I do everything I can to ensure that my recipes (and instructions) are accurate and easy to follow. However, I am human, and don't always get it right. If you notice anything strange, a mistake, or even a typo, please let me know in the comments. 

Wholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread BunsWholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread BunsWholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread BunsWholegrain Spelt and Oat Bread Buns

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating