Rye bread is a type of bread made with various proportions of flour from rye grain. It can be light or dark in color, depending on the type of flour used and the addition of coloring agents, and is typically denser than bread made from wheat flour. It is higher in fiber than white bread and is often darker in color and stronger in flavor. Rye bread has notable health benefits when compared to white bread.
Pure rye bread contains only rye flour
, without any wheat. German-style pumpernickel, a dark, dense, and close-textured loaf, is made from crushed or ground whole rye grains, usually without wheat flour, baked for long periods at low temperature in a covered tin. Rye and wheat flours are often used to produce a rye bread with a lighter texture, color and flavor than pumpernickel. 'Light' or 'dark' rye flour can be used to make rye bread; the flour is classified according to the amount of bran left in the flour after milling. Caramel or molasses for coloring and caraway seeds are often added to rye bread. In the United States, breads labeled as "rye" nearly always contain caraway unless explicitly labeled as "unseeded." In Canada (especially Montreal), breads labeled as "rye" often have no seeds, whereas breads labeled as "kimmel" are usually rye with caraway seeds. Some unique rye bread recipes include ground spices such as fennel, coriander, aniseed, cardamom, or citrus peel. In addition to caramel and molasses, ingredients such as coffee or cocoa (or even toasted bread crumbs) are sometimes used for both color and flavor in very dark breads like pumpernickels. The addition of caraway seeds to rye bread is to counter the bloating that can be caused by the high fibre content of rye. Caraway has well known anti-flatulence properties however the association is so long standing that the flavour combination is now almost inseparable.
Rye bread contains a large amount of fiber and a small amount of fat. Rye bread has a low glycemic index, which means it does not cause a spike in blood sugar as white bread and other breads do. In addition, whole-grain rye flour has more soluble fiber than whole-grain wheat flour making whole-grain rye more effective for controlling the cholestrol level in the blood.