Looking for an easy, homemade bread you can whip up in less than 30 minutes? This Quick Finnish Flatbread is made with wholesome ingredients and comes together FAST. Serve generous squares warm from the pan alongside your favorite soup or stew or slathered with butter and drizzled with honey.
Why This Recipe Works
This recipe works because:
- It contains NO yeast and is instead leavened with baking powder and baking soda. This allows for a quick rise.
- A combination of rolled oats and two types of flour (barley and all-purpose) contribute wholesome nutrition, flavor and structure to the bread.
- It bakes quickly in a greased 9 x 13 pan which adds to the simplicity of the recipe.
- It can be on the table in less than 30 minutes with little effort but is tasty and satisfying all the same.
Nordic cuisine boasts a variety of flatbreads ranging from pillowy soft to cracker-like in texture. This Quick Finnish Flatbread is an easy everyday flatbread of the soft and tender variety. Some of the key ingredients include:
- Barley flour. Soft, slightly sweet with just a hint of nuttiness, barley flour makes a tasty and nutritious addition to this simple bread. If you can't get barley flour, feel free to substitute rye or whole wheat.
- All-purpose flour. Because barley flour contains very little gluten, it needs a little help when it comes to building structure into the bread. All-purpose flour provides the gluten framework that allows the bread to rise.
- Old Fashioned Rolled Oats. Oats bring tenderness, flavor and a little sweetness to the recipe. A little sprinkle of oats on top of the bread prior to baking gives it a nice visual appearance and a little textural contrast as well.
- Baking powder and soda. This is a yeast-free bread, so baking powder and soda do the work of helping the bread rise in the oven.
- Buttermilk. With its acidity and subtle tang, buttermilk is the liquid of choice for this Finnish flatbread. It creates a tender and delicious final product.
How to Make this Recipe
- Whisk the dry ingredients together.
- Combine the buttermilk and melted and cooled butter in a bowl or liquid measuring cup. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir with a fork until they just come together.
- Transfer the dough to a greased 9x13 pan and smooth out the top. Sprinkle with oats.
- Bake at 475 degrees for 15-17 minutes or until the bread springs back when touched and is beginning to turn golden brown.
See how easy that was?
Expert Tips for Success
- When you add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, don't over mix. This can lead to a not so tender final product. Gently mix with a fork until everything JUST comes together.
- Use a small offset spatula to smooth out the top of the dough. If you don't have one, a rubber spatula or even damp fingers will do the job just fine.
You can make a buttermilk substitute by adding 1 ½ tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar to 1 ½ cups of milk. Stir together and let sit for 5 minutes. It's ready to use!
Use the instructions above for making a buttermilk substitute but use lactose-free or plant-based milk instead.
Rye flour would be a very authentically Finnish substitute. You could also use whole wheat, spelt or all-purpose flour.
This bread is best the day it is made. To store any leftovers, simply cover the pan with plastic wrap or transfer cut squares of the bread to an air tight container for up to a day.
Yes. Once the bread has cooled completely, wrap individual squares in plastic wrap and place in tightly sealed freezer bag or air tight container. Take out individual slices as needed.
Looking for more Nordic flatbread recipes? I've got a few really tasty ones here on the blog:
If you loved this recipe, give it a star review! Also, snap a picture of your flatbread and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #truenorthkitchen and tagging me @true_north_kitchen.
Quick Finnish Flatbread with Oats and Barley (Rieska)
- ½ cup old fashioned rolled oats + 2 tablespoons for sprinkling
- 1 cup barley flour feel free to substitute rye or whole wheat
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled
- 1 ½ cups buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan or spray with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- Whisk ½ cup of oats, barley flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar together in a medium bowl.
- Combine butter and buttermilk. Stir together with a fork (the butter may clump slightly, but this is fine).
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Gently mix with a fork until just incorporated. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan and smooth the top (a small offset spatula works well for this). Sprinkle evenly with 2 tablespoons of oats. Bake until bread springs back to the touch and is beginning to turn golden brown, about 15-17 minutes.
- Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool. Cut flatbread into 2 inch squares to serve. The flatbread is best the day it is baked, but leftovers can be stored in an airtight container and room temperature for a day or so.