Bread Recipe With Wild Yeast (With Honey Water Or Fruit Yeast)

You don’t need commercial yeast to make a delicious loaf of bread! Bake homemade bread with wild yeast from scratch. I’ll show you two alternatives to make yeast from scratch at home with honey water or fruit water. Bread with honey or fruit yeast is easy and cheap to make and so delicious – it tastes just like ordinary yeast bread!

Bread Recipe With Wild Yeast (With Honey Water Or Fruit Yeast)

After making small beer and vinegar, yogurt and sourdough at home, I now made bread with homemade fermented honey water and fruit water. Honey and fruit water is used to gather wild yeasts and lactobacilli which naturally leaven the bread. I was very curious to try spontaneous fermented bread without commercial yeast. 😀


Homemade Wild Yeast


  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 200ml lukewarm water

Fermented honey water, honey wine, mead


Stir honey into lukewarm water. Close it loosely with a lid or kitchen towel to keep off flies. Let the honey water ferment for 5 days, stir the solution once or twice in that time.

Fermenting honey water with wild yeast and lactobacilli

Soon there’ll be a symbiotic culture of wild yeast and lactobacilli in the honey water. The wild yeast-lactobacilli culture always looks a bit different: always a bit like a jellyfish floating in water, sometimes it’s more at the bottom, sometimes it’s floating at the top.

Making bread with fermented honey water

After 5 days, the honey water tastes mild and slightly of alcohol (mead and honey wine is made similar), and not at all sour like sourdough. Now the honey water is ready to use.



Bread With Wild Yeast

Homemade wild yeast starter


Wild Yeast Starter

  • 200ml honey water
  • 100g whole wheat flour


Stir flour into the honey water and let the starter rise for 12 to 24 hours, covered with a kitchen towel.

DIY yeast starter spontaneous fermentation

Bread Dough

  • 200ml wild yeast starter
  • 200ml water or wild yeast starter
  • 500-600g white flour
  • optional: salt

bread naturally leavened with wild yeast


Mix all ingredients for the bread dough. Put the dough into a greased pan and let it rise overnight covered with a kitchen towel.

baking bread without commercial yeast

Bake the bread with wild yeast at 200°C for about 1 hour.



Alternative: Fruit Yeast

You can also make bread with homemade fruit yeast instead of honey water.


  • peels and cores of 1 or 2 apples
  • 200ml water

Fruit yeast, apple starter, bread


Cover apple peels and cores with water, cover it with a piece of muslin, and after two days at room temperature, the apple starter is ready. Now remove the peels and cores. Stir in enough white flour to make a bread dough, let the dough rise for 6 or 8 hours, preheat the oven to 200°C, and bake the bread for about an hour. The bread tastes very yeasty – and not at all sour like sourdough bread – just like bread made with commercial yeast.

Alternative: Use two days old vinegar instead of fruit yeast. The bread has hardly any taste at all – a sweet, mild taste – like store-bought white bread.

Naturally Leavened Bread With Wild Yeast



More Bread Recipes Without Commercial Yeast


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Wild Yeast Bread With Honey Water Or Fruit Yeast Recipe

38 thoughts on “Bread Recipe With Wild Yeast (With Honey Water Or Fruit Yeast)

  1. Lina, I’m always interested in the different ways people start a starter. Have never heard of anyone using honey water! I started my wild yeast sourdough starter with just flour and water. I make sourdough bread a couple times a week with it.

    1. Hi, Jean. Yes, sourdough starter is made with just flour and water. But this isn’t sourdough: Bread made with honey water or fruit yeast starter doesn’t taste like sourdough bread, it tastes rather like yeast bread.

  2. I’m a first time bread maker so I have a question about the recipe. For the dough it says 200 ml of wild yeast starter then 200 ml of water or wild yeast starter then flour. Do I end up using 400 ml of liquid?

    1. Hi, Gayle! For the final bread dough I usually use 300g wild yeast starter (200ml honey water & 100g whole wheat flour), 100ml water, 500-600g white flour and and a pinch of salt. I hope this helps! 🙂

      1. LIna.. that’s a bit confusing to me. Your recipe above says 200ml yeast starter (which is made 2:1 honey-water to ww-flour), plus 200ml water or yeast starter (again) and then 5-600ml of flour plus salt. Then above you say it’s 300ml yeast starter plus 100ml water plus the flour and salt.

        I’m assuming it should be your reply to Gayle above – 300g wild yeast starter made from the honey water, plus 100g water and say 550g flour. So that gives you a hydration of 300/650 or 46 percent. Seems low to me..

        Could you clear up my thinking on this.. thanks.. I’ve been brewing some honey water (from raw honey I harvested earlier this week) and just mixed 100g of fermenting honey water (smells like peaches!) and 50g whole wheat flour to sit over night.. let me know if you can.. thanks!

        1. You can use 400ml wild yeast starter or 200ml wild yeast starter + 200ml water – I usually use 300ml wild yeast starter + 100ml water. Then just add enough flour until the dough has the consistency of bread dough made with store-bought yeast. Hope this helps!

    1. There’s no printable version yet but you should still be able to print the blog post. 🙂 If you don’t know how, there are a lot of tutorials online.

  3. I just made this with honey and water-the yeast was visible in 5 days. I am gluten free and used bobs 1 to 1 flour and let it sit with a towel over it for 12 hrs. it smelled like yeast etc. Then I mixed more of the flour (2 cups) with it, plus 2 eggs and 1/2 stick of butter, as per my usual gluten free bread recipe, and let it rise in a warm oven for an hour. Then put it into a bread pan covered with saran wrap for 20 more minutes, as per my usual recip and it usually rises over the top of then pan a little. This didn’t rise, maybe a tiny bit. So I am baking it now and hoping its edible. I am assuming the wild yeast just isn’t as strong as commercial, and it really does need to sit overnight in the loaf pan to rise more. 🙁

    1. I make it new every time. If you feed it, I think you’ll probably get sourdough rather than yeast bread. But if you try, please let me know if it works. 🙂

  4. Hi! I tried this a week ago, but it just got moldy. Also, I noticed your honey is pretty clear where mine is yellow. What kind of honey do you use? Also, what am I doing wrong?

    1. I used organic orange blossom honey. Sometimes mold develops: It depends on the weather or what other bacteria are in the air. You can try letting the solution ferment for a shorter time or stir it once or twice a day. Hope this helps! 🙂

  5. Hi, I am new to this. But for the apple yeast water, how do you tell when it’s fermented well? How do you recognise molds and how to avoid them? How much flour should you add to the 200ml apple yeast water you’ve prepared and do you have to knead the dough or do you just mix it well? Is there a technique for mixing to ensure fluffiness of bread? How do you know whether the dough texture is right? Sorry for the tirade of questions, but I am truly excited and want to get it right. In fact, why don’t you put a video — start to finish from making the apple water to the dough, will be very useful. TIA

    1. Hi Pooja, when the apple yeast water is fermenting, it starts to bubble – here in my post about homemade vinegar you can see photos of how the apple yeast water should look after about two days. And you can taste it – it’s safe to eat because it’s nothing else than homemade must or mead: When it’s ready, the apple yeast water tastes sweet and sometimes slightly alcoholic; but it shouldn’t taste sour. Mold looks furry and usually grows on the surface of the apple water. So to be on the safe side, you can stir the apple water once or twice a day to prevent mold growth. And you can use the same recipe above “Bread With Wild Yeast”: just use apple yeast water instead of honey water. The dough texture should be similar to homemade yeast bread made with store-bought yeast. And to get fluffy bread, you have to let the dough rise for some hours or overnight. Hope this helps! 🙂

  6. Hi Lina….was just wondering if you can use this honey water as a substitute for any recipe that calls for sourdough starter?

    1. Hi Terri, this isn’t sourdough starter: the honey water is used to catch wild yeast. Sourdough tastes sour because of acetic acid bacteria, whereas this honey water tastes sweet. So you can rather use honey water in recipes that call for store-bought yeast. But you probably have to use a lot more honey water because wild yeast is less active than store-bought yeast, and you have to let the dough rise longer.

  7. Thanks Lina. Your reply really does help. I didn’t get a notification about your reply, so I just started with honey yeast. I have used to it today to make my starter. I am trying with sorghum flour though. Let’s hope it works. Out of excitement, I had made double the honey yeast water. Is there a way to store the extra wild yeast water for later? Shall I refrigerate? If this turns out well, I am considering using it to make pull-apart rolls. Let me know

  8. Just wanted to also share the entire water didn’t become jelly like, only some at the bottom. I didn’t necessarily spot bubbles, but it does smell like alcohol and tastes sweet but alcoholy too. As I had made double the yeast water, I stirred it well and measured 200ml and added it to the sorghum flour. So not all that jelly like stuff has gone in the starter. Do you think the starter will still rise? How much rise should one expect?

  9. Hi Lina,
    I’m back with results. My bread flopped 🙁 It smelled a lot like alcohol, was dense and heavy (the ‘oven spring’ didn’t happen though it had risen a bit after I had kneaded and put it in the sandwich bread pan over night. The crust turned out hard, but the inside was damp even though I let the bread get some air for over six hours after it was baked. I am determined to give your recipe another go, but this time, not with sorghum flour as I previously tried, but white flour as you have suggested. Before I give it a second go, would love your help with these questions:
    – How does your starter look and how much does it rise?
    – When adding flour to the start how do you know the dough is fine: in terms of texture, hydration, etc.?
    – What’s your kneading technique, duration and how many times do you do it?
    – How much does it rise when you put leave it overnight after kneading?
    – How long and at what temperature do you pre-heat your oven? (I use an OTG)
    – Once you’re done baking, how do you figure out whether it’s well-done from inside too? Do you have any tips/tricks?
    – How much oven spring should one expect? Does it turn out like store-bought sandwich bread/white bread or are there some differences I should expect?
    – If it’s under-baked, what do you do?
    – How long do you let it cool after it has baked before slicing it?

    Hope to nail it this time, looking forward to your reply. Thanks a bunch!

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