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How healthy is honey oat bread?

Honey oat bread has become a popular alternative to traditional white bread. With its sweet taste and hearty oats, honey oat bread is commonly perceived as a healthier option. But is it really better for you than regular white bread? In this article, we will analyze the nutritional value of honey oat bread and compare it to white bread to determine just how healthy it is.

Nutritional breakdown of honey oat bread

First, let’s look at the typical ingredients and nutritional profile of a slice of honey oat bread:

Ingredients Nutrition
Enriched wheat flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid) 74 kcal
Water 1.5g protein
Whole wheat flour 14g carbohydrates
Rolled oats 1g fiber
Sugar 3g fat
Yeast 105mg sodium
Honey 6g sugar
Wheat gluten
Soybean oil
Dough conditioners

A slice of honey oat bread provides 74 calories, 1.5g of protein, 14g of carbohydrates, 1g of fiber, 3g of fat, 105mg of sodium and 6g of sugar. It gets some fiber and nutrients from the whole wheat flour and oats. The added honey also gives it a sweetness and flavor that regular white bread lacks.

Nutritional profile of white bread

For comparison, let’s look at the typical nutritional breakdown for a slice of plain white bread:

Ingredients Nutrition
Enriched flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid) 75 kcal
Water 2g protein
Sugar 15g carbs
Yeast 1g fiber
Salt 0.5g fat
Soybean oil 135mg sodium
Preservatives 2g sugar

A slice of plain white bread has 75 calories, 2g protein, 15g carbs, 1g fiber, 0.5g fat, 135mg sodium, and 2g sugar.

Comparing the two, we can see that honey oat bread has slightly fewer calories and carbs than regular white bread. It has a bit more protein and fat, and also contains 4g more sugar due to the added honey.

It’s a mixed bag when you look at the macros. But when considering the ingredients, honey oat bread comes out on top for its inclusion of whole grains and nutrients from the oats, as opposed to plain refined flour in white bread.

Benefits of whole grains

One of the biggest advantages of honey oat bread is that it contains whole grains from the whole wheat flour and oats.

Whole grains provide more nutrients than refined grains, including:

  • Fiber – helps promote digestive health
  • B vitamins – important for converting food into energy
  • Iron – helps transport oxygen in the blood
  • Magnesium – plays a role in muscle and nerve function

The fiber in whole grains may also help lower cholesterol and control blood sugar levels. Eating whole grains like oats is linked to a reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity and some cancers.

So the whole grain content makes honey oat bread a better choice than white bread for optimal nutrition.

Drawbacks of added sugars

However, honey oat bread also contains significantly more added sugars than regular white bread – 6g per slice compared to 2g.

The honey in honey oat bread bumps up the sweetness and sugar content. But added sugars should be limited as part of a healthy diet, as they provide empty calories without nutrients. Consuming too much added sugar is linked to increased risk of:

  • Obesity and weight gain
  • Heart disease
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Fatty liver disease

Added sugars like honey are fine in moderation as part of an overall healthy diet. But going overboard on sugary baked goods like honey oat bread could counteract the benefits of the whole grains.

Fiber content

Fiber is another important point of comparison between honey oat bread and regular white bread.

Getting enough fiber promotes digestive health, helps control blood sugar levels, lowers cholesterol, and aids in achieving a healthy weight.

Here are the fiber counts:

  • Honey oat bread: 1g per slice
  • White bread: 1g per slice

Both breads provide 1 gram of fiber per slice, so neither can be considered a high fiber bread.

For a healthy fiber intake, you would have to reach for a 100% whole grain, high fiber bread that provides at least 3 grams per slice. Or supplement your lower fiber bread with additional high fiber foods.

So in terms of fiber content, honey oat bread and white bread are equal but not excellent sources.

Glycemic index

The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly foods raise blood sugar levels. Foods with a high glycemic index cause faster and larger spikes in blood sugar compared to low glycemic foods.

Honey oat bread has a glycemic index of about 74, which is considered high (1). In comparison, white bread has an even higher glycemic index around 75-80 (2).

Foods with a high glycemic index are associated with increased risk of:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Cardiovascular disease

So neither bread can be considered optimal for controlling blood sugar. However, honey oat bread is slightly better than regular white bread in this regard.


When it comes to vitamins and minerals, whole grains like oats generally provide more micronutrients than refined grains.

Oats supply more magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, thiamin, riboflavin and vitamin E than white flour (3).

So honey oat bread made with oats and whole wheat flour contains more nutrients than plain white bread made with refined flour.

However, since both types of bread are low in fiber and high on the glycemic index, neither can be considered the healthiest choice.

Weight loss

If you’re aiming to lose weight, minimizing calorie intake is important. In that regard, honey oat bread may have a slight advantage over regular white bread due to its marginally lower calorie count per slice (74kcal vs 75kcal).

However, both breads rank low for nutrient density with their refined flour content and minimal fiber. For weight loss, it would be better to use your calories on more nutrient-dense, high-protein, high-fiber foods that promote satiety and stable blood sugar levels.

Neither white or honey oat bread is an ideal choice when dieting. Though if choosing between the two, honey oat would be somewhat better for weight management.

Gluten content

Both regular white bread and honey oat bread are made with gluten-containing wheat flour. So those with celiac disease, gluten sensitivity or wheat allergy should avoid both types of bread.

There is no difference between the two when it comes to gluten content. Those following a gluten-free diet should opt for gluten-free bread alternatives instead.

Cost comparison

On average, honey oat bread costs $3.99 for a 24oz loaf, while regular white bread runs about $2.99 for a 20oz loaf (based on major US grocery store prices).

Per ounce, honey oat bread costs about $0.17 while white bread costs about $0.15.

So honey oat bread is a little more expensive than regular white bread. However it’s not a major price difference, especially when comparing per slice.

The slightly higher cost of honey oat bread can be justified if you are trying to avoid refined flour and increase whole grains in your diet.

Pros and cons

To summarize the key differences between the two breads:

Honey oat bread pros:

  • Higher protein
  • Contains whole grains
  • More nutrients
  • Lower glycemic index

Honey oat bread cons:

  • Higher in added sugar
  • Lower in fiber
  • More expensive

White bread pros:

  • Lower in added sugar
  • Lower in calories
  • Less expensive

White bread cons:

  • No whole grains
  • Higher glycemic index
  • Lower nutrient levels

So while neither is the healthiest bread option, honey oat bread comes out slightly ahead due to its whole grain content. But the added sugars need to be kept in moderation.

Healthiest bread choices

For optimal health and nutrition, your best bet is to look for bread that is:

  • 100% whole grain – minimally processed with bran, germ and endosperm
  • High in fiber – at least 3g per slice
  • Low in added sugars – under 2g per slice
  • Lower on glycemic index scale – under 55 is low

Some better options would include:

  • 100% whole wheat bread
  • Sprouted whole grain breads
  • Rye or pumpernickel bread
  • Sourdough bread

These breads offer more fiber, nutrients, and better blood sugar control than either white or honey oat bread.

Reading ingredient lists and nutrition labels can help identify the healthiest options for your needs.


Honey oat bread does edge out regular white bread when it comes to nutrition and health value. The whole grain oats and wheat provide more protein, nutrients and fiber compared to refined white flour.

However, neither bread is considered the healthiest choice due to the low fiber and high glycemic index. The added sugars in honey oat bread also need to be limited.

In moderation as part of an overall healthy diet, honey oat bread can be a better choice than regular white bread. But for optimal nutrition and health, it’s best to focus on high fiber, low glycemic index whole grain breads without excess added sugars.

Evaluating nutrition information and ingredients is important to determine the healthiest bread options for your individual needs and preferences.