Udi’s Bread: What’s UP with All the Holes??

by poodlegirl on June 2nd, 2011


I asked a few celiac friends if they had noticed a change in Udi's bread. They all answered with the same statement; "Yes, it's full of holes!"  I emailed Udi's a few times, but never heard back from them. So I did what all good little bloggers do and posted a picture on my blog.

Udi's Gluten Free BreadI have no idea how many people have complained to Udi's about their hollow bread, or if they are taking measures to correct it. They certainly have not asked for my two cents (imagine that!). But as a celiac with a nutrition and food science background I know that if you add too much yeast or baking powder in relationship to the flour; or you beat your dough too much you will have large air pockets. That is why a muffin recipe tells you to fold the dry ingredients into the wet only until combined, otherwise it will bake up full of air pockets.

Udi's deserves a lot of credit for coming up with bread that looks and tastes like…well...real bread! That's why I am so disappointed at this new development. If any readers out there are long time celiacs like me, you remember when the only gluten free commercial bread came from a health food store and was possibly made from wood pulp! The first time I tasted Udi's bread a few years ago I was visiting my daughter in Boulder, Colorado. I was mostly amazed at how soft and chewy the breads were, with no need to toast it. I took some home in my suitcase and sparingly doled it out. But now that it is mass produced and readily available, I really don't see the resemblance to the bread I first tasted. It is so light and full of small and large holes that it is like eating air. Definitely not worth six dollars!

Udi's Cinnamon BreadAfter raising a celiac child I can't help but think back to my chagrin at her having "different" food than the other kids. It was so stressful and inconvenient to conjure up an alternative lunch.  How nice today to be able to send a gluten free sandwich to school that looks similar to regular wheat bread. Oh, wait! The picture in my mind is changing; the child has peanut butter and jelly oozing out of the bread craters and down her arms!

I am all about being a frugal gluten free cook, and since I have several loaves of holey bread in the freezer I thought I'd come up with a few recipes for you.

1)  Giant Hot Dog Bun: (For large appetites only.) Insert a bratwurst through the largest hole in the center of the loaf. Enjoy with a handy 12 pack of Redbridge. 2)  Hamburger: Use a donut cutter on the patty before cooking. Save the centers for a future meatball recipe. Serve between two slices of Udi's bread. Better hold the mustard or wear a bib! 3) Grilled Cheese Sandwich: Place a slice of Swiss cheese between two slices of Udi's bread. Turn the bread until the holes line up. I know you are up to the challenge! Butter both sides and fry until golden. 4) Toast: Only make this on Sunday because it is holy. 5) Toad in a Hole:  Step 1: cut a hole in a slice of bread. Step 2: Place the bread into a buttered skillet and break an egg into the hole. Step 3: Fry until egg is well cooked. Step 4: Skip step 1 if using Udi's bread!

This is all in great fun. Congratulations to Udi's on hitting 200,000 Facebook friends. We really do love you! We just don't want to pay for air!

----------------------------- Author Information: Gloria Duy, RD LDN, Pontiac, IL Diagnosed with celiac disease in the 1990s, Gloria is a full-time registered dietitian, celiac support group leader and part-time blogger.  Blog: http://glutenfreepoodle.blogspot.com/


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27 Responses to “Udi’s Bread: What’s UP with All the Holes??”

  1. Chris says:

    I live in the middle of Alaska, so the holey bread probably won’t get here for another month or so, but what troubles me is your mention of Redbridge beer. That stuff is awful! Try Omission. You’ll thank me.

    • Gloria says:

      Haha Chris. Don’t hold your breath waiting for the holey bread. But if you look at when I wrote my article it was 2011. Redbridge was all that was available. Funny that this article is still current as Udis still sells holey bread. Enjoy recipe number one with your Omission when it comes to Alaska!

      • Hey Gloria!

        And Redbridge changed their formula since 2011. Blah. As for Udis’ bread, people still say they have holey bread, and other manufacturers seem to have the same problem. That’s why we make ours in a bread machine. Takes 10 minutes to prep the ingredients, you dump them in the machine and an hour later you have a great loaf of bread. :)

        John

        • Gloria says:

          Hey John. I agree, we can do much better. And the smell of bread baking in your kitchen can’t be beat! I guess it’s like anything, once it’s mass produced the quality goes down. My blog is now glutenfreepoodlehome.com by the way!

  2. Hailey says:

    UGH! This is an old blog post, but I am with you on this. This has happened over half a dozen times, now. This stuff ain’t cheap. http://imgur.com/zOxGmJG This is what I found today. Not very usable.

    I wrote Udi’s, but I’m really not expecting anything to be done about it considering how huge they’ve gotten in the last few years. I guess I just have to hang onto all of my receipts when I buy Udi’s…I just can’t trust they’ll be good when I buy them. :(

  3. Anthony says:

    I purchased 5 loaves and in each I maybe had 3 pieces of bread that I could use for a sandwich for my kids. I am no longer going to be buying this bread.

    Below is UDi’s lame response:

    Thank you for taking the time to contact us here at Udi’s. We always appreciate hearing from consumers who care enough to reach out to us with their comments or questions.

    We regret that you had a negative experience with our Udi’s Bread. Thank you for providing the packaging coding so our Quality Control Department can look into this further.

    The production code (best buy date) is found on the white plastic tab that closes the bread bag (it’s a series of 5-6 numbers). Once we receive the package information we would like to send out a complimentary coupon.

    We are passionate about offering the highest quality gluten free products that bring joy to our customers. The holes in our loaves of bread can be caused by a natural enzyme reaction with gluten free ingredients, we’ve invested in new equipment and just moved into a brand new facility to help address this. We thank you for your patience while we continue to strive for the best product possible.

    Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us.

  4. Sarah says:

    I finally broke down and quit chasing a gf store bought bread that compared to the white bread craving I have. I’ve made white bread at home since I was very young. I bought a bag of Jules flour and using one of her recipes made some of the best bread, gf or otherwise, that I have ever made. Plus! No kneading! It’s a batter bread, a little thicker than cake batter, but it is wonderful!!!! And doesn’t even require you to be a chef or a baker! Easy peasy!
    Sarah

  5. Amber says:

    Because of the huge holes and very crumbly, dry bread Udi ‘s now sells, I quit buying it and make my own. Homemade is only good a few days though, rice flour molds easy but if you refrigerate it it gets crumbly too. I recently had the best gluten- free bread in Spain where g-free foods are relatively easy to find in both restaurants and grocery, what are they doing different? It’s like fresh French bread, so so good.

  6. Faith says:

    I very recently purchased two perfect 30 ounce loaves from Costco. It was so nice to have a ‘standard’ size sandwich for the first time in 9 years. The price was six dollars and some cents… tossed the receipt already. I will definitely be buying these large no holes loaves from Costco again as they were good and a great value too.

  7. Michelle says:

    We have had a few loaves like that. My son was so annoyed! The last few have been ok.

  8. Joan says:

    I have been purchasing Udi sandwich loaf for over a year. I have been celiac for over 15 years. This is the best bread for sandwiches etc. but I too have been disappointed with the holes. I took pictures this morning and was planning on sending them to Udi to let them know but I see that this is not a new or random occurrence. I hope I don’t have to search again for a gluten free loaf of bread that I will like as much as this brand. It’s such and expensive and disappointing process.

  9. Linda Murphy says:

    Yes!! I recently have had SEVERAL loaves of Udi’s white bread with HUGE holes- it is so small to begin with, it hardly compares to even half a slice of bread – so disappointing – hope they fix it. I first discovered Udi’s a year and a half ago and thought I died and went to heaven but it is nowhere like it was back then. Udi’s – hope you are listening!!!

  10. Penni says:

    We’ve been very lucky. Out of all the loaves we bought over the past year or so for my son (six years old, Down Syndrome, Autism and wheat intolerance), we’ve only had one somewhat bad loaf when it comes to holes. We buy ours at Goodness Me and it’s the only GF bread that my son enjoys.

  11. Rachel says:

    I have noticed all the holes, too! I’ve also noticed that the loaves keep getting smaller and smaller. So it seems like we’re paying extra money for extra holes! Not too happy with this. I will switch to other gf breads if this continues. Problem is, there are few choices of gf bread in my town. I’ll just have to bake some instead…

  12. Karen says:

    I couldn’t agree more. I love Udi’s products…I do. But I switched to Rudi’s bread because at least I am getting my money’s worth. No holes. And I love Rudi’s bread. It’s absolutely amazing. You get bigger slices. AND NO HOLES!!

  13. Tee says:

    We’ve switched to Rudi’s. It tastes fantastic, the loaf is much bigger for the same price, and minimal holes!

    I was talking to a food rep for a different GF food company who was “in” on the Udi’s info. She said that they recently sold to a large corporation (that’s why they are able to have such high distribution now), so I’m thinking it’s starting to have corporate problems. When Udi’s was smaller, they would have responded to your question right away…then again, they never had holes in the bread when they were a smaller company.

    We do love Udi’s bagels, though! And I just bought their new Millet/Chia bread last night, but haven’t tried it yet. I hope it’s good!

  14. Debbie R. says:

    I got tired of holes too and switched to Jensen’s Bread after I tasted some at Whole Foods. The Jensen’s Multi-grain is awesome, different than anything I’ve tried and their hamburger and hotdog buns are amazing too. All the McMenamin’s Pubs in the Northwest are serving them so you can get a gf burger there. I’ve heard Jensen’s may be setting up online sales, which would definitely make my family in Southern California happy.

  15. I purchased two loaves of the whole grain bread recently and they didn’t have holes. In fact, the last loaf I purchased frozen at Whole Foods was one of the best and softest loaves I ever had of Udi’s. Try contacting Udi’s on Twitter.

  16. Terri says:

    I noticed the dryness and stiffness of Udis and switched to Rudis. It tastes so much better and doesn’t have holes! Not only that but toasted with butter it is incredible. Has so much flavor. I’m sold.

  17. Sarah says:

    The holes really bug me. It’s not easy to make a sandwich when all the ingredients are oozing out all over. I found an easy fix… I switched brands!

  18. Martin says:

    That is a quality assurance type issue and they need to do something about it. There is probably nothing nefarious happening with regards to weight, just an unfortunate change in process. I would guess it has to do with resting time of the dough and the amount of yeast used.

    This is a big deal, as the options are slim. Complaining is a good idea. Also return it to the store. That’s a good way to get a manufacturer’s attention. Maybe even try to find out who the distributer is and let them know. Good luck!

  19. Amy D. says:

    I noticed it too! But I hadn’t been eating it that long. I thought maybe it was an anomaly that I happened upon just by happenstance… more than once. Probably been about 2 months since I’ve bought any loaf bread because I’m not eating grains at all for awhile. But the last 2 -3 loaves of UDI’s I purchased before changing my diet had some holes!

  20. Marilyn says:

    I immediately noticed a change in the new loaf of Udi’s bread that I just purchased! It is drier, more crumbly, and not as palatable as before. Hopefully enough of us will complain and they will go back to the original recipe!

  21. Mark says:

    Did you weigh the bread?
    If it doesn’t match the weight listed on the bag, you need to complain to the government dept in charge of that.

    For about $4 I get a bag of brown rice that lasts me about 3 weeks.

  22. A. Holovacs says:

    We’ve noticed the same ting recently. Along with this change we also noticed a change in texture. It seems a little drier and a little stiffer as if it had dried out somewhat. We store our bread in the refrigerator or just leave it on the counter and it used to stay soft and fluffy no matter what (at least until the bag was empty). It’s still the best one on the market but we buy only one loaf a week now instead of three because it’s not nearly as enjoyable this way.

  23. Courtney says:

    This happened to my boyfriend a few times too! At nearly $6 a loaf, it’s very disappointing to take a slice (or five or ten) out of the bag and have it be virtually ALL crust because of the huge holes in the bread. That being said, he’s still a loyal Udi’s customer because of the taste and texture. I sure hope they can correct this one flaw because otherwise they have great GF products!

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