Boston Brown Bread

 A couple of weeks ago, my friend Mary was making some New England Comfort Food Classics in her kitchen and sharing them with her friends and fans on Facebook. I am a New England transplant now living in South Carolina, as is Mary. Boston Brown Bread also called Molasses Bread is a very regional recipe and while is it carried in the grocery store in New England, it is not available here in South Carolina.
I had just had a death in the family and was really needed some classic New England foods to comfort me so I asked Mary if she’d ever made Boston Brown Bread at home. Well, the very next morning, she tested a batch and shared with me the recipe. I was so happy (and excited) that the very next day, using her recipe for bread, my Mom’s recipe for a very traditional version of Boston Baked Beans and an awesome Homemade Linguica recipe (Portuguese Mild Smoked Sausage) that I whipped up a full meal of my favorite New England Comfort Foods. While I followed Mary’s recipe to the letter, I also tested some cooking variations that worked well for my family and I have included the variations on cooking in my notes below.

At first bite of Mary’s recipe, I was transported to my kitchen in New England as a child. It tasted exactly as I remembered it. It was exactly what I needed to warm and comfort me.

Thank you to my friend, Mary, for your wonderful recipe.


Check out these classic New England recipes:

Boston Brown Bread also called Molasses Bread is a very traditional recipe dating back to Colonial times.

Boston Brown Bread

Ronda Eagle | Kitchen Dreaming
Boston Brown Bread also called Molasses Bread is a very traditional recipe dating back to Colonial times.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 50 minutes
Course bread
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 361 kcal


  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup Cornmeal
  • ¾ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¾ cup dark molasses
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup dark seedless raisins


  • Place all the dry ingredients in your electric mixing bowl [paid link] and mix well. Add the liquid ingredients and blend well.
  • Grease three 16-ounce wide-mouth canning jars. Divide the batter evenly between the three jars; they will be about 2/3 full to allow for expansion of the batter. Cover each with wax paper and then aluminum foil. Tie each with a bit of string so that the foil is sealed.
  • Place a cake rack in the bottom of a large stock pot and place the cans on the rack. Add enough boiling water to come up the side of the cans.
  • Cover the pot and bring it to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer the cans for about 2-½ hours. Check the water level now and then as you may need to add more water.
  • Remove the jars from the stock pot and allow to cool 10 minutes on a cooling rack [paid link]. Remove the aluminum foil cover, run a butter knife all around the inside of the jars, invert and shake out gently onto the cooling rack [paid link].
  • Slice with a knife and serve hot topped with butter. Add a side of Boston Baked Beans and Hot Dogs or Sausages for a complete meal.


Substitute 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1 cup rye flour in place of the 2 cups  of whole wheat flour.


Serving: 11/8 recipeCalories: 361kcalCarbohydrates: 77gProtein: 8gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 446mgPotassium: 866mgFiber: 6gSugar: 27gVitamin A: 102IUVitamin C: 1mgVitamin D: 1µgVitamin E: 1mgVitamin K: 1µgCalcium: 150mgFolate: 24µgIron: 4mgZinc: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

5 thoughts on “Boston Brown Bread”

  1. Where are the previous comments on Boston Baked Beans and Boston Brown Bread? I am sure I commented on both recipes, and I would like to refer to my comments since I’m making both recipes tomorrow. I believe I asked this question before.


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