No-Knead 5-Minute Artisan Bread

This no-knead 5-minute artisan bread explains how to make homemade bread in just minutes a day without fuss. Quick, easy, rustic, entirely doable even by novices, and the best bread you’ll ever bake.

Six round loaves of no-knead artisan bread.

This no-knead 5-minute artisan bread is truly “revolutionary.” That’s the word the authors who created this quick homemade bread recipe use to describe it, and we couldn’t agree more. Like so many rustic bread recipes, it relies on just pantry staples of all-purpose flour, yeast, salt, and water. But what distinguishes this recipe, its true genius, is the technique. There’s no kneading required. More than that, though, you can stash it in the fridge for later. So you simply forget about it until you’re overtaken by the craving for freshly baked bread. When that happens, you just grab the dough from the fridge, lop off enough for a loaf, shape it, let it rest a few moments, and then slide it in the oven before you continue to go about your life. We’re talking 5 minutes of effort here. Seriously. Just don’t come forget to come back later to retrieve the best loaf of artisan bread you’ve ever experienced from the oven.

[Editor’s Note: Okay. If you want to get technical, this bread does take a little more than 5 minutes to make, but that’s only if you include the resting and baking time. But in terms of actual effort? Seriously, it’s just 5 minutes. We’ve relied on this recipe literally dozens of times and we can assure you that 5 minutes hands-on time is all you’ll ever invest at any given stage in the recipe. That’s nothing for a loaf of rustic artisan bread that’s homemade. Nothing short of a miracle, that is.] Originally published January 13, 2014.Renee Schettler

How To Make Other Shapes Of Bread

The authors created this recipe so that it can accommodate any shape loaf, whether the round boule you see in the photo above, a baguette, bâtard, ciabatta, couronne, crusty white sandwich loaf, Pullman sandwich loaf, or soft dinner rolls. The recipe below instructs you on how to make the French boule (pronounced “bool” and meaning “ball”). But if you’re experienced in shaping the others, or want to Google instructions on the others, by all means, go right ahead. The dough will work admirably.

5-Minute Artisan Bread

  • Quick Glance
  • (76)
  • 10 M
  • 5 H
  • Makes 40 slices | 4 (1-pound) loaves
4.9/5 - 76 reviews
Print RecipeBuy the The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day cookbook

Want it? Click it.


Ingredients sent!

Send Grocery List

Email the grocery list for this recipe to:

Is required
Sign me up for your or newsletter, too!
Is required


Make the dough

Warm the 3 cups water just a little so that it feels just slightly warmer than body temperature. That should put it at about 100°F (40°C).

In the large bowl of a standing mixer or a 6-quart container with a lid, mix the yeast, warm water, and salt. Don’t worry about getting the yeast to dissolve.

Add the flour to the yeast mixture all at once, then use a spoon or stand mixer to mix until the flour is completely incorporated and you have a blobby dough. (If you’re hand-mixing the dough and it becomes too difficult to incorporate all the flour with the spoon, just use very wet hands to press the mixture together.) Don’t knead the dough! It’s not necessary. You just want the dough to be uniformly wet and loose enough to conform to the shape of its container. All you need to do is be certain that there are no dry patches of flour.

Loosely cover the container and let the dough hang out at room temperature until it begins to rise and collapse or at least flatten a little on the top, about 2 hours. (Relax. It’s bread dough, not a newborn. You don’t need to monitor it constantly. And don’t worry about the dough being precisely double or triple its original volume as you would with a traditional bread recipe. Just walk away, go about your business, and come back in 2 hours. Seriously.)

Stash the dough in the fridge

After 2 hours, stash the container of dough in the fridge. That’s it. (If your container isn’t vented, you want to ensure the gases can escape by leaving the cover open a crack for the first couple days in the fridge; after that, you can seal it.)

You can use the dough anytime after the initial 2-hour rise, although the refrigerated wet dough is less sticky and easier to work with than dough at room temperature, so it’s best to refrigerate the dough overnight before handling it. Once refrigerated, the dough will seem to have shrunk back upon itself as though it will never rise again—that’s normal. Whatever you do, do not punch down this dough. You’re trying to retain as much gas in the dough as possible, and punching it down knocks gas out and results in denser loaves. Just be certain to use the dough at some point within 14 days.

Shape the dough into a loaf

When you want to bake a loaf of artisan bread, dust a pizza peel or a baking sheet turned upside down with cornmeal or line it with parchment paper.

Grab a hunk of the dough and use a serrated knife or scissors to cut off about a 1-pound piece of dough. Hold the dough in your hands and, if necessary, add just enough flour so the dough doesn’t stick to your hands. (What you’re trying to do is surround the surface of the dough with flour so that it can be handled. You’re not trying to incorporate more flour into the dough, so for the love of all things good, resist the temptation to get rid of all the dough’s inherent and lovely stickiness by working the flour into the dough.)

Gently stretch the surface of the dough, tucking the ends underneath the ball and rotating it a quarter turn as you go. Most of the dusting flour will fall off, and that’s okay, because as we just said, it’s not intended to be incorporated into the dough. The bottom of the ball of dough may appear to be a collection of bunched ends, but it will flatten out and adhere during resting and baking. The rest of your round loaf should be smooth and cohesive, and the entire shaping process should take no more than 20 to 40 seconds—don’t work the dough any longer or your loaves may be dense.

Place the ball of dough on the prepared pizza peel or baking sheet, seam side down with all the collected bunched ends on the peel or board. Let it rest for about 40 minutes. It doesn’t need to be covered. (You may not see much rise during this period, but don’t fret. It will rise much more during baking.)

Bake that gorgeous-looking loaf

Preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C) for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Preheat a baking stone (or an upside-down cast-iron skillet or baking sheet) on a middle rack for at least 20 to 30 minutes. Place an empty metal broiler tray on any rack that won’t interfere with the rising bread. (Do not use a glass pan as it could shatter.)

Dust the top of the raised loaf generously with flour and, using a serrated bread knife, slash a 1/2-inch-deep cross or a couple gashes or a tic-tac-toe pattern in the top. There’s no need to dust the flour off the loaf.

Place the far edge of the peel or the upside-down baking sheet in the oven on the baking stone or cast-iron skillet or upside-down baking sheet a few inches beyond where you want the bread to land. Give the peel or baking sheet a couple quick back-and-forth jiggles and then abruptly pull it out from under the loaf. The loaf should land on the baking stone with very little drama.

Quickly but carefully pour about 1 cup hot water into the broiler tray and immediately shut the oven door to trap the steam. Bake the bread for a total of 20 to 35 minutes, until the crust is richly browned and firm to the touch. Because the dough is so wet, there’s very little risk of it becoming dry despite how dark the crust may become. (If you’re using a baking sheet rather than a baking stone, you may need a little extra time—up to 50 minutes total—for the bread to be done.)

Remove the bread from the oven and let the loaf cool completely, preferably on a wire rack for the best flavor, texture, and slicing. (Crazily enough, a perfectly baked loaf will audibly crackle, or “sing,” when initially exposed to room temperature.) The crust may initially soften but will firm when cooled.

Print RecipeBuy the The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day cookbook

Want it? Click it.

Recipe Testers Reviews

Wow! What a gorgeous, beautifully colored, irresistible loaf of artisan bread! I wish I'd made more loaves at the same time. The loaf had a chewy crust and a beautiful interior.

The ingredients for the dough were fast and simple to assemble. I used a wooden spoon and didn't need a mixer. Make sure to use the scoop-and-sweep method to measure the flour. I placed the dough in a large, ungreased Tupperware with a lid and rested it on the counter for 2 hours. Then I placed the container in the refrigerator, loosely covered, and waited 2 days to use the soft, spongy, yeasty-smelling dough. (I stuck a sticky note on the outside of the container with the date, so I could keep track of the 14 days—not that I expected it to last that long!)

Forming the boule and transferring it to my hot pizza stone were simple enough. I made a tic-tac-toe pattern on the top of the loaf, and there was definitely a significant amount of flour on the loaf, but it didn't burn. My loaf baked for 25 to 30 minutes. We love the aroma of bread baking in the oven, and we were all watching and waiting for the loaf to cool so it could be sliced. This was truly Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, and I can't wait to try some other variations on this.

I nearly always have some of this dough in the fridge. This 5-minute artisan bread is a simple 4-ingredient dough.

I used a wooden spoon in a large mixing bowl and finished with my wet hands. The dough was very lumpy and sticky. After the 2-hour rise, the dough was full of holes, which are very noticeable throughout when using a glass bowl. After refrigerating the dough overnight, it was very easy to work with. So easy, in fact, I really didn't need to flour the surface before cutting a loaf-size amount from the dough. I made a couple of boules, and while they had a nice crumb, the crust was spectacular!

This dough is perfect to have on hand for any occasion. If, like me, you love a crisp, crunchy bread, this recipe is for you. If you leave the dough in the fridge for at least 48 hours, the crumb has many more holes. When you use it the next day, the crumb is much tighter. I prefer mine with holes to capture all of the goodies that I apply.

This has to be the easiest and fastest way to make bread dough. It's also now my favorite way to make bread dough—and a decent loaf or boule of bread with little effort.

I made a free-form boule and a loaf in a traditional loaf pan. I found that after baking the loaves for 30 minutes, I had a tanned boule, much like a round sourdough loaf. I found this loaf had a moist and dense crumb and a crunchy crust. As for the loaf pan, I found that batch didn't rise as much, but this may be due to my handling of the dough. It was still delicious. This is certainly a way to wow on a weeknight, as the bread does its own thing while you prep dinner. A great method for making bread.

I used a 10-quart storage container with a lid. While the dough was rising, I left 1 corner open, and then when I refrigerated it, I closed that corner. It really is a good idea to open it the first few days to allow the extra gases out. I find it's a good workout mixing the dough with a wooden spoon (about 6 or 7 minutes of mixing), but I've used a stand mixer in the past with other bread doughs for speed (about 3 or 4 minutes). Both work equally well. The resulting dough looks like wet pizza dough, sort of jelly- or pudding-like. When the work is done, all that remains is to use it within 14 days. I so far have not had this dough last a week.

The only suggestion I would make is that you should check your yeast to make sure it's still viable before mixing your dough. I forgot to do that, and my first batch failed to rise. I replaced my yeast with fresh, and the second batch performed as it should.

This 5-minute artisan bread is absolutely delicious! I love the warm, earthy flavors, the spongy, chewy texture, and the crisp crust. Great recipe.

I just used the last of the dough that was in the refrigerator. However, I don't have a pizza peel, so I used a small bread board with a handle. When I tried to put the dough on the baking stone as instructed, it fell and lost its shape, and I had to pick it up and re-shape it. I took the bread out of the oven when it was 210°F, and the top was richly browned. It took only about 20 minutes to bake the bread.

This recipe was well worth the time.

I'm going to start off by saying that this 5-minute artisan bread dough is gorgeous and comes together without a hitch. I followed the directions precisely and used exactly 6 cups flour. It's a lovely, sticky dough that's a bit difficult to work with unless you're used to working with loose doughs. The resulting boule was golden brown, with a lovely crust, fantastic chew, and wonderful flavor.

After allowing the dough to rest in the fridge for 2 days, I embarked on making the boule. I followed the directions precisely, and even without a pizza peel, I was able to put the formed boule onto the preheated baking stone without changing the shape too much. Don't be scared to use a lot of flour to help you shape the dough—it won't get incorporated at all, and it looks rather gorgeous against the burnished crust. I baked the bread for exactly 30 minutes and then placed it on a rack to cool.

This recipe is so easy and would be a good one for first-time bread bakers. You don't really need any fancy equipment. Just a bowl, a spoon, and a baking sheet.

I used all-purpose unbleached white flour and Red Star instant yeast. It took all of 10 minutes to mix up the dough. After a 2-hour rest at room temperature, the dough was refrigerated for 3 days before baking. I made 2 loaves. Shaping was easy and I was careful to not knead or add much flour. After a 40-minute rest on the baking sheet, it went into the oven. Pouring the hot water into the boiler tray was an exciting flash facial! I baked for 35 minutes until an instant-read thermometer read 190°F. Let cool for a few hours--and yes, it did crackle and sing!

We really enjoyed this bread, especially toasted. The crust was super crispy. I was expecting the interior to have some bigger air pockets but the texture was very uniform. The taste wasn't super complex but still delicious.

I liked this homemade bread recipe very much because it was easy to make, needs no effort to get a yummy artisan bread, and the end result is a crusty and crunch bread with a chewy interior that we really liked. The prep time is totally accurate as it took around 5 minutes to mix it up.

I used a baking sheet rather than and the baking time was 50 minutes.

I am familiar with the book by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François, Artisan Bread In Five Minutes a Day, and while I had never made this recipe, when I saw this test recipe, I knew it was time to try their approach. What I particularly liked is the simplicity of the bread making. The results are very good. I can see the appeal of this method to breadmaking as anyone can have fresh bread in very little time because you have a loaf ready to go just sitting in your fridge. I made my loaf 8 days after making the dough and the flavor was excellent!

The dough began to rise quickly. I thought it would take over the container!  At the 2-hour mark, the dough was pushing up the loose cover of plastic wrap. Into the fridge it went at the two-hour mark. The next morning, I checked and the dough stayed high with very little shrinking back. At the 24-hour mark, I checked and the dough was the same height as it was this morning. And, lastly, the following morning, the dough was the same height.

I made loaf #1 about 46 hours from the beginning of the recipe and I made loaf #2 exactly 8 days from the beginning of the recipe.

I grabbed 1/4 of the dough The second loaf was stickier than the first. It took about 30 seconds to shape. I used a baking sheet. The bread baked for 40 minutes and I then checked for doneness. The internal temperature was 209°F. I removed the loaf from the oven. The outside was a nice golden brown color and it felt very firm.

As this is a popular recipe, I won't tell you what you already know, this recipe is a winner! As far as the baking goes, I baked this loaf for 22 minutes and found it created a lovely bread with a depth of flavor and a great crust.
I mixed it for 30 seconds with the dough hook and 1 more minute after that. I placed it in the refrigerator overnight and baked the bread for 22 minutes with a pan of hot water.

Even though I consider myself an avid baker, I have to admit this was my first time ever attempting bread...and I can now say there’s no recipe I would rather have lost my breadmaking virginity to! I was so intimidated to start, but making the dough was just about the simplest set of instructions I’ve ever followed. Moving along with zero confidence in myself, the bread proofed nicely over the 2 hours and was easy to handle afterwards using the steps as written!

It baked up perfectly in 34 minutes on a baking sheet with parchment paper.

To my family: You’re welcome.

Homemade bread is such a luxury but can be intimidating to try to make it. There's nothing intimidating about this recipe. It's as easy as it sounds. The hands-on time is truly only 5 minutes. (I have to admit, I was skeptical when I saw "5 minutes' as part of the title, but it's true!!!

There are only 5 ingredients in this recipe and one is optional (which I didn't use).  I used my mixer to combine the ingredients, which took about 1 minute.  I couldn't believe how fast this all came together. The hands-on time is very brief but there's a waiting period to let your dough rest and rise. I made mine one day and put it in the refrigerator after it sat at room temperature for 2 hours.

I baked the first loaf of bread the next day. It was excellent. It's a heavier bread and it's delicious. I served it to company and the whole loaf was completely gone! I baked mine on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 25 minutes. This recipe requires little effort and delivers big!!!

The bread was simple and delicious! I felt very fancy baking my own bread and it was easy enough that I will do this again.

The notes throughout this recipe make bread baking approachable for any level of baker. The instructions were conversational yet specific, and were consistent with the results I saw. For example, step 10 reads like the author is there coaching you, gently encouraging you to shape the sticky dough into an attractive mound while note overworking the dough. I also liked that the recipe made a large batch of dough that could be stored in the fridge and baked off one loaf at a time as needed.

The major difference between the recipe and my bread was the yield is the recipe promised four loaves but I only got three. I weighed the first two loaves to be exactly 1 pound, but the remaining dough was only 1 ⅓ pounds, so I opted for a third slightly larger loaf rather than two smaller ones.

hand-mixed the dough with a rubber spatula with no issues. Step 5 indicated that after a couple days, venting was not necessary, but my dough continued to expand in an airtight container after one week in the fridge. A larger bowl is probably better if possible.

Be careful when adding boiling water to the hot tray because it steams up immediately.

I baked my loaves on a dark cookie sheet with parchment. After baking three loaves, I determined that the best method for my oven was to bake the bread on a lower rack for about 25 minutes, then do the last 5 minutes on an upper rack (requiring me to swap the bread pan and water pan) to brown the top of the loaf. Otherwise, the underside of the loaf is too pale and not crusty/chewy enough. I baked the third, larger loaf for an extra 5 minutes (35 total).

The first loaf was baked on day 1 (after about 6 hours in the fridge), the second on day 4, and the third on day 9. The second and third seemed slightly more flavorful than the first to me, and were definitely more fragrant (think bready/yeasty/sour notes). The second and third seemed to be less dense and have bigger air pockets throughout, as well as a chewier crust.


#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

David Says

David Leite caricature

I’ve made six or seven dozen loaves of 5-minute artisan bread. That's no exaggeration. (That's one of my babies below.) When I don’t want to think too hard, which these days is often, I whip out Zoë’s and Jeff’s book, flip it open to the master recipe, and start measuring. (I always use a scale, and every loaf has been perfect.) The One, who’s not a bread fan (it was always foisted upon him as a kid so he would fill up), devours these. In fact, he even pleads with me not to make them because he can’t stop eating them. What I love best about the recipe, though, is it’s so versatile. To whit, I have made loaves with bacon, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and black pepper; sausage and Cheddar cheese; rosemary and olive oil; sautéed onion; chopped black olives. You name it. And I’ve made all kinds of shapes: boules, loaves, pan loaves, couronnes, epi. It’s the official bread of our annual cassoulet party, and guests even place an order for a loaf to take home. Trust Fatty Daddy, you’ll never go wrong with this recipe.

5-minute Artisan Bread Recipe


  1. I’ve been researching when to add sugar or salt to a yeast bread recipe. I’ve read more than once that salt retards the yeast and perhaps should be blended with the flour before adding that mix to the yeast mixture. This recipe says add the salt to the warm water with the yeast which I did… and my loaves were very dense. (NOTE: I’m the one who also added Wheat Germ with my flour.) As Kosher salt is coarse, I don’t think it should be blended with the flour, but am curious about adding it to the yeast water. When doing this, are we intending to retard the yeast? TY. PS: I cut the dense loaf very thin and served as a substitute for crackers with cheese and olives; it was a hit.

    1. It’s interesting that you bring this up, JuliaV. I have also read that it can retard yeast. I can’t speak to Zoe’s thought process when she developed this recipe, however, it is possible that adding the salt to the yeast water is intended to slow the fermentation process significantly to allow it to have that long slow fermentation.

      Your loaf looks great and appears to have great structure, and I love the suggestion of serving it in place of crackers! The addition of seeds and wheat germ may be contributing to the density of the loaf, but also watch that you’re not over-proofing your loaf before refrigerating, and also that you’re not over-handling the dough before baking.

  2. May I ask a question before I start mixing? Is it possible to divide the dough into 4 boules immediately after mixing… prior to the 1st rise; so there would be 4 containers of dough hanging out on the counter for 2 hours and then being stashed in the fridge? Thank you?
    PS: I’ll come back with a real rating once I’ve made the recipe. TY

    1. Yes, JuliaV, I think it would be fine to do that. Takes up more space in the fridge, but saves you dividing it later. Let us know how it turns out!

    2. This is a follow-up to my query of 11/14. I prepared the dough, but guess I messed up because the final bread did not rise. Here’s what I did (please don’t be mad :-) I also added 1 Tbsp honey to the warm water plus reduced the flour to 6 cups and substituted 1/2 cup wheat germ plus added 1.5 cups roasted sunflower seeds with the flour/wheat germ mixture. Then I divided the dough into 4 bowls covered with saran wrap before refrigeration. When I tried to shape the loaves for baking they weren’t as moist as they should have been… probably due to the wheat germ.
      I like the flavor of the bread, but the loaves are no bigger after baking than they were straight out of the refrigerator. Definitely not the recipe’s fault. I will make another batch tonight but will skip the honey and the wheat germ.
      I do love that I can make 4 loaves so easily.

      1. Thanks for sharing this, JuliaV. Bread-making is all about experimentation and finding the right moisture content and an appropriate amount of add-ins that work for you. You are likely correct that the wheat germ absorbed too much of the moisture and made the dough too heavy to rise in the oven. The dough should still be quite moist and tacky when you shape it for baking. Do let us know how your next batch works out.

  3. Can this dough (a piece of it) be used for a pizza? I have a bucket of dough in the fridge and am so looking forward ro baking bread with it.

    1. We have had readers who’ve had success making pizza with this dough, Maria. You’ll want to use an 8-ounce piece of dough and quickly form it into a ball. Let it rest while you get your toppings together, about 5 minutes or so, then roll it out to 1/8-inch thick. Top and bake, preferably on a baking stone. Do let us know how it turns out for you.

  4. Question — when the recipe calls for salt, is it actually needed to make things work, or is it just being added for taste? I have to limit my salt intake.

    1. Jon, while salt does play an important role in making your bread taste good, it also helps to slow the rate of fermentation. Without it, you may find your bread rises too much too quickly.

  5. Am I the only one who has had zero success with an oven proofing/rise? Every loaf (about 12 so far) turns out like a disc- yeast is fine, crumb turns out great, but after I transfer my proof onto a baking stone it deflates and never rises again ::sad face::

    1. Bee Roll, are you seeing any rise before you transfer it? How long are you letting it proof?

      1. Not as much rise as I’d expect, less than double? About an hour on the counter. I’m still sitting on two portions so I’ll give it another go tomorrow and report back. Thanks for the response!

        1. You’re welcome, Bee Roll. This may seem counter-intuitive, but try letting it rest for less than an hour. Maybe closer to 40 minutes. In traditional bread making, you ‘punch down’ the dough between rises, so you’re looking for a significant rise the second time around. This bread is different. Here, you want to be as careful as possible when transferring the dough from its first rise (and refrigeration) and barely handle the dough. This leaves plenty of gas trapped in the dough, ready to expand when heated, and ultimately result in a round puffy loaf. You shouldn’t expect to see a significant rise while it is on the counter. I made two loaves this morning and saw (at best) a 25% rise before baking. If you let it sit for too long before baking, the dough can over-proof and when exposed to the heat of the oven, it will collapse, leaving you with a flat loaf. Looking forward to hearing how it turns out.

    1. Yes, Laney, I’ve made this many times using my Kitchenaid stand mixer. Do let us know how it turns out for you.

        1. Just until it all comes together and there are no dry patches, Laney. You’re not really kneading it, just combining the ingredients. It usually takes me 20 to 30 seconds of mixing with the hook.

  6. SO hopefully i am successfully attaching photo of misshapen loaf. It’s cooling so havent tasted yet but wondering how round got rectangular

    1. Your loaf looks terrific, Bob. Lovely job! It’s hard to predict how a loaf will take shape as the gas pockets may not be distributed in a perfectly even pattern, however, slashing a cross in the top of the loaf before baking will help. Try to make slits of even depth in both directions, and this should help the loaf to maintain its shape. Also, some readers have had great success baking their loaf in a Dutch oven or pot, which would also force the dough to stay in a specific shape.

      1. Having trouble replying. Thank you so much for getting back to me. Bread is delicious and I’ll use rest of the dough following your instructions for larger, more even cuts. I’ve used Leites before, for duck prosciutto, and now I think I’ll be a regular. So many bread recipes take forever. This one is simple, fast, and delicious. Will be a staple at Casa Berlow.

  7. Under david’s comments, in his picture I noticed he had parchment paper under his loaf of bread and it look like it accompanied the bread in the oven and I am writing to ask if he does this always instead of baking it directly on the pan or has another reason for it?

  8. This is my second attempt with this recipe. I have made no-knead bread for over a year. In this recipe, I combined the two techniques. I made the big loaf for myself and the wee one for a friend.

  9. Regarding 5 minute Artisan Bread:

    I’m very new at bread making. Doesn’t the yeast need to be fed some amount of sugar to get it going?

    Thank you

    1. robin, you are correct, most bread recipes do get you to proof the yeast with warm water and some sugar. However, in this case, with the long fermentation (it really is better if you can leave the dough at least overnight in the fridge), it’s unnecessary. If you’re unsure if your yeast is fresh, you can check by mixing some with warm water and a bit of sugar to see if it foams, but if your yeast is fresh, just proceed with the recipe as written. Do let us know how it turns out!

      1. Can’t wait to try this recipe! We love crusty bread at home and just moved to our new place and have a steam oven, how much steam should we go for here? Thank you!!!

        1. Jorge, I’d follow the recipe as written. It was created for folks without a steam oven. If you’re determined to use the steam function–and I can’t blame you–I’d find a recipe that is written fo rit.

  10. Hi there!!
    I just tried the recipe for the 1st time ever! Followed all the instructions, watched the video, bread looks beautiful but it’s a bit dense for me? How do you get more air holes inside the loaf? Thank you very much for your feedback! Cindy Gevorkian

    1. Cindy, it takes a little practice, but you just want to be very careful not to deflate the dough when you’re shaping your loaf. Handle it as little as possible and as gently as possible.

      1. Thank you Angie! I love that you responded SO FAST and I LOVE your website! I am going to try again, and tomorrow I’m going to try and make the Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup. I wish you had cooking classes on line! That would be great and I would pay!
        Thank you again,

        1. Thank you so much, Cindy! I will pass your kind comments along to David and the rest of the team. Do let us know how the chicken tortilla soup turns out.

  11. I wouldn’t have believed it! I’ve never had bread rise in the oven but this did! I thought I had another flop on my hands after 2 hrs out of the fridge and my dough was barely plump. If you’re in doubt watch the videos, very helpful. Where has this recipe been all my life?

    1. Lana, those loaves look magnificent! Love seeing and hearing this. As you said, it’s just a matter of having a good recipe (and maybe a little practice). Congrats and we’re so grateful you took the time to write us! Thanks!

  12. Can this bread be baked in a stone pizza oven without the steam aspect? Water and pizza ovens are a no-no. Thanks in advance! CeCe

  13. Where has this recipe/technique been all my life??? I have been trying to find a way to make great homemade bread without a huge time commitment and a lot of clean-up afterward. This is it, in spades. It really is as good, and as easy, as all the comments say it is. I am beyond impressed and so, so grateful to you all for sharing it with the world!

  14. Can I bake this bread without an oven??
    I make my regular bread in a big pot with salt at the bottom.

    1. We’ve never tried it this way, so we really can’t say Anoosha. This loaf relies on a hot oven as well as the steam from the added water to achieve a crispy crust and tender interior, and I’m not sure that you will be able to replicate that effect in a pot.

  15. I’ve made the Artisan bread 3 times
    The first loafs was as the recipe says, next ones was with flax seeds and chia seeds. These last 3 I made it today with flax seeds and chia seeds and some Italian style herbs. I really like the bread.
    Thank you for the recipe.

    1. Renee, we’re delighted that you’re enjoying the bread so much and that you’re experimenting with it. Do let us know what you try next!

  16. Enjoying my first loaf, baking it on parchment in a cast iron fry pan as I await my “stone”. Since I bought 2, 5-qt mixing buckets with lids, and since additives like black olives and garlic and cheese etc, need to be added in the beginning as to not over mix, my suggestion is to make your mix, divide in half as you finish and then using just half in one of the two buckets, add whatever your additions are early on before it rests, then voila, no over knead. JJS

    1. Mandy, you certainly can, however, it’s best if you add any mix-ins when you’re initially mixing the dough as handling the dough too much later on will cause it to deflate. Ultimately this means your going to have a very large batch of cinnamon raisin bread (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing!). If you’re specifically looking for a good cinnamon-raisin bread recipe, I’d suggest trying this recipe.

  17. I didn’t have course salt so I used a little bit less than 1 tablespoon of table salt and I used bleached flour instead of unbleached flour… is that all okay? Also If I do not have a thermometer how do I know that the bread is completely cooked?

    1. tete, those substitutions should be fine. There’s no way to be 100% certain that it’s completely cooked without a thermometer, but you want the loaf to be a deep golden brown and the crust should be very firm. Thankfully, this bread is very forgiving, so if you’d like to err on the side of caution, bake for the full 35 minutes, or even a few minutes more.

  18. Easy recipe for a newbie breadmaker like me. I let the dough rise for about 2 hours then transferred it to the refrigerator for about 3 hours. (Couldn’t wait overnight!) Cut off a 1-lb chunk and baked it on parchment paper on my pizza stone for about 35-40 min until 210°F internal temp. (At 30 min the temp was only 200°F) I also had a pan of boiling water in the oven. The top crust was a beautiful golden brown, but not quite as dark as I was hoping. Waiting for it to cool so we can have a taste! Only thing is the underside seems to be very, very light, and doesn’t look very crispy…any ideas why? Thanks for the fabulous recipe!

    1. Debbie, the bread looks excellent! How long did you preheat your oven? That stone has to be blazing, blazing hot. And it takes longer to heat an oven with a stone in it than without. What you can do is turn on the broiler to preheat the oven so the stone gets really hot. Then lower the heat to the correct temperature and slide in the bread.

      1. Thanks, David! For that first loaf, I preheated for about 30 minutes with the stone. For my second loaf (which was about 1.5 lbs) I preheated for about 40 minutes, had my oven thermometer in there to check for temp. I even moved the boule directly onto the stone after about 20 minutes of baking. Ended up baking for about 45 minutes, internal temp to 210 and still- underside is white-ish and looks uncooked…. sigh.. so close…

        Do you think moisture is getting trapped between the dough and parchment? I have only just begun using my stone, could that be the problem?w

        And by the way, the bread tastes as good as it looks! It was truly amazing :-)

        1. You bet, Debbie. And I think I know the problem: the parchment. Do you have a peel or a rimless baking sheet you can use as a peel? It will make a big difference with the dough directly on the stone.

    1. Great question, David. To retain the most moisture in the bread, store it in a plastic bag at room temperature. This method will result in a softer crust, but the bread will also stay soft. If you really love that crispy crust, you can store the bread in a paper bag, with a kitchen towel wrapped around it, which will let the bread breathe a bit, but will ultimately result in a drier bread.

    1. David, baking——especially baking with yeast——is such a precise science and is carefully calibrated to amounts. I understand this dough makes ample bread but I would strongly discourage you from halving the recipe as we haven’t tried it and it could yield disappointing results. Can you possibly split the finished dough in half and share with a family member or friend so the ingredients don’t go to waste?

      1. I make this dough recipe using half the recipe every time with perfect results. You just have to do the math to figure out the yeast and salt amounts.

  19. This recipe makes amazing bread! I’ve never been great at yeast breads – until this recipe! I’ve made the recipe twice, both times leaving it in the fridge for a couple days. The second time, I shared a loaf with a neighbor and my husband wanted to know why I was giving away ‘his’ bread! Haha! So I had to promise to make more. Thank you for this super-easy, fantastic-tasting recipe!

    1. Hah! Love how possessive your husband has become of “his” bread, Shannon! A sure sign your bread baking is better than you’d imagined. You just needed a good recipe is all! You’re so very welcome. And thanks so much for sharing this lovely note with us!

  20. This recipe was the first bread I’ve ever made. I don’t really think I want to try any other :-). I’d like to add fennel seeds on the inside and sesame on the outside. Can you tell me when and how to incorporate the seeds into the recipe?

    1. Hi, Denise. I’m so happy you enjoyed the recipe. You’d add the fennel seeds right in the beginning, when you mix the dough. As far as adding the sesame seeds, once you shaped it simply sprinkle the seeds on top.

  21. Do I need to proof my active dry yeast for 5-10 minutes prior to adding flour? Or just add flour and hope for the best? Can’t wait to try this!

  22. Hello, I have made this bread twice and it is really delicious. Although when I slice it, once it has cooled down, the bread feels very doughy and not dry. I do bake it for the recommended time and it sounds hollow when I tap the bottom of it. What am I doing wrong? Help!

    1. Deena, I’m delighted you enjoyed the recipe. Are you allowing the bread to call 100% completely? If so, your oven may be off. Do you own an instant-read thermometer? That’s always the 100%, absolute best way to know if bread is done. It should read between 200°F to 210°F. You don’t own a thermometer, allow the bread to bake an extra 10 minutes.

  23. This was my first attempt EVER at baking bread and it turned out great! My husband, who thinks all major food groups should consist of bread, loved it as well. Can’t wait to try adding things like cheese, olives, etc. Thanks so much and Zoe’s video was most helpful!

    1. Mary, thrilled to hear this! And Zoe is amazing, is she not?! So glad to hear you had exactly the experience we want to help create for first-time bakers! And appreciate you taking the time to let us know.

  24. This sounds wonderful! I just wonder how much, if any, whole-grain pastry flour I could sub for the all-purpose flour. I love the idea of being able to slice off a loaf and bake as needed. I certainly will respond after I make this bread.

    1. Fran, I don’t think whole-grain pastry flour has enough protein in it to work well in this recipe. My suggestion is to use higher-proteins flours. I’ve been very successful using whole-wheat flour. But I’ve never used whole wheat pastry flour.

  25. I haven’t made the bread yet but it looks perfect for my skill level and what I have on hand. Different people tell me that you MUST have a Dutch oven or MUST use bread flour, but this recipe requires neither. But the best part so far is that I got to start by seeing Zoe Francois tell me all about shaping it. Yum!

  26. This is my second loaf from my first batch. It’s delicious. I used bread flour, and the first loaf had a wonderful chew.

  27. Soooooo good!! This recipe is absolutely delicious . It was my second time baking bread and it turned out great. I didn’t use the broiler with water I just put the loaves straight in the oven and they turned a golden color. The inside is just so heavenly soft and the crust is perfect and chewy. Love this recipe.

    1. Love hearing this, alcia! Thanks SO much for taking the time to let us konw. Greatly appreciate you taking the time to share how much you love this recipe and glad to hear it’s a keeper…

  28. I made a batch of the bread yesterday using a 75%-25% blend of AP and wheat flour. I let it set overnight in the fridge, then made one loaf this morning. Its really important to try your best not to lose the air in the dough when you remove it from the bowl and give it the 4 folds. You can rise again on the pizza peel, or put it in a banneton (both work well). I have an external thermometer for my oven, as it tend to vary based upon external temperature, which is OK for cooking, but not so much for baking. I baked the loaf about 30 minutes on my baking steel, until an internal temp of 210 was reached, and it sounded hollow when I tapped on the bottom of the loaf. The mix of wheat and white flour works well with this recipe. The overnight fermentation in the fridge gave it a mild sourdough like flavor. Its got a great crumb too! If you want to experiment further, One could also do a 75%-20%-5% mix of white, wheat, and another flour (I’ve used ground flax seed).

  29. I am by no means experienced but after making a couple basic white sandwich bread loaves, I wanted to try something more artisan. This recipe is so good and really hard to truly ruin. I messed up a bit while making my loaves, one got so flat lol. But I persisted. Then my oven was acting funny so I had issues with temp and consistency. THIS BREAD STILL TURNED OUT AMAZING. My picky children who don’t even like crust both ate ALL of the pieces I gave them. Even the crust. Amazing. I can’t wait to try it after an overnight rest in the fridge. These were fresh after the 2 hour rise.

    1. Magnificent, Morgan M.! We so appreciate you taking the time to let us know. This is the sort of message that is exactly why we do what we do. Thank you for making our week!

  30. Can you make this bread with whole wheat flour? Or with a mix between white & whole wheat? Would it require a different amount of water? Or any other change?

    1. Hi Courtney, I reached out to Craig, one of our testers, and these are his thoughts. “I’ve been experimenting with sourdough, after getting tips from our local artisan baker. She advised about 25% wheat or other grain as a replacement to the white when adding to the sourdough. I have been making a similar, ferment in fridge, no knead sourdough recipe I’ve had success with a great crumb at 70% white, 25% wheat and 5% flax flour. “

    1. Hi Sue, a cup is 8 ounces. If you look at the top of the recipe by “Ingredients”, there is a button to toggle between US and Metric measurements.

  31. Wow!! I have resisted my impulses and my family’s urging to take on sourdough (sorry, not happening), and appreciate this easy route to bread that nonetheless has some complex flavors. THANK YOU for this wonderful recipe – and the super helpful video on shaping the loaves.

    I used half white and half whole wheat flour for my first effort, and now have a batch of all white flour in the fridge – I will give it a few days to do its thing prior to baking. My family thoroughly enjoyed the first batch, but somehow it doesn’t seem quite as hearty or rugged-looking as it should. What should I do differently next time?

    1. Aliza, that’s a great looking loaf!! Congrats. I wouldn’t worry about the look. Each loaf is different. The only thing I personally would do would be to bake it longer. I like my bread to have a darker crust. Other than that, it looks perfect.

  32. Will this work in a cast iron french oven? (Staub 3.75 qt) How would you transfer the dough to the cast iron baker?

    1. Jackie, it absolutely will. What you need to do is place the dough on a parchment-paper sling. Then lower the bread and parchment into the baker, cover it, and bake away.

  33. Hi. Can I use wet yeast and how much of it…This is the only yeast I have, which I froze in 1 oz serving. Cannot find dry yeast.

  34. This is my first time ever trying to bake bread. It turned out amazing and was every bit as easy as you said! Thank you so much!

  35. For too many times to mention…I have suffered with too dense a bread. BUT you may have helped me solve the problem: “Whatever you do, do not punch down this dough. You’re trying to retain as much gas in the dough as possible, and punching it down knocks gas out and results in denser loaves.”

    1. My wife is Czech and loves my rye bread with caraway seeds. Next time I’m going to substitute using dark rye flour and add a few tablespoons of caraway seeds. Any tips? Also, can I use the dough immediately after the 2-hour rise and skip refrigerating it? What do I lose?

  36. This is fantastic! I’ve made it several times now. When I bake it after the two hours rising period, it is crusty and just like an artesian bread should be. Yesterday I left it mistakenly for six hours to rise and it tasted like a sourdough with a softer crust, but we still loved it just the same If not more. Wish I found this recipe years ago!

  37. I have never made bread before and am wondering if there are considerations to be made for high-altitude baking?

  38. mm…i have tried the recipe but got a dry dough….where did i go wrong?? I tried a second batch, less flour, still a dryer dough not as shown….

        1. Mary, you’ll need 910 grams of all-purpose flour. For reference, there is a little toggle switch above the ingredients that says US/Metric. If you click on the metric, you’ll see all the weights.

  39. Hello, just made the dough which is now in the fridge. Can the bread be baked in a loaf pan? Or in an iron skillet? Can’t wait to bake it! Thanks. Christina

    1. Christina, a version of this can be baked in a loaf pan, but not this one. You can certainly preheat your cast-iron skillet and use that as a substitute baking stone.

  40. Hello! I am so excited to try out this recipe. Do you know the weight on grams of the dry ingredients? I’m afraid that as a first time bread baker I might not get correct measurements using cups. Any advice in grams would be amazing!

    1. Hi Silver Rosales, there is a toggle switch right by the ingredient list that enables you to go between US and Metric measurements.

  41. I do not have a pizza stone or Whatever pan you suggested can I just bake this on a pizza pan?? I still need to put the cup of water underneath?? I love to try new things this sounded so exciting until I read the things I needed to bake😏

    1. Carolyn, do you have a cast-iron skillet? You can turn it over and bake on that. And, yes, you do need the pan underneath for the water. It helps the bread expand and form a good crust.

  42. This looks wonderful ! Is it possible to make with sourdough starter? No yeast is available at our stores these days…

  43. After 3 weeks of searching for yeast (well I went to the store only twice here in London suburbs, put in online cart several times, no luck), someone gave me a blob of “FRESH yeast” and asked me to freeze it until I was ready to use it. So now I have it in my freezer and plan to bake my first ever bread this weekend. Any tips on how to use this yeast? It looks like dough with the yeast smell. How do I measure a “tablespoon of dry yeast” equivalent? Any help is appreciated, thanks in advance!

      1. Ah, ok. Thanks so much, David! I will convert gms to tablespoons and do this. I will definitely let you know how it turns out. Much gratitude – Veena

  44. This recipe is great! Just wondering, why does part of our bread bulge out when we cook it? It was Round when we put it in the oven.

    1. Jessica, looks aren’t everything! I think the slash you made was too close to a weak spot in the bread (which all loaves have), and it took advantage of it and rose as it the oven.

  45. First timer here. I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making homemade bread for awhile. Now it seems that I have plenty of time on my hands. I really really enjoyed this bread. The crust is awesome. So chewy and crunchy, Thank you!

  46. Love this recipe! Tried for the first time. I think the 6.5 cups of flour may have made it a bit drier than what you described. Perhaps I’ll cut it a bit short next time.

    The other interesting thing was that I had to bake for 50 minutes. And it still seems way lighter than others. My oven typically runs pretty hot but I kept at 450 expecting to have to take it out at the 20 minute mark.

    Haven’t cut it open yet but ended up taking internal temp and pulled it at 190. So hoping for the best!

    1. Stefanie, are using volume measures or are you weighing the flour? Sometimes people have a heavy hand and scoop extra flour into the measuring cups. Weighing the ingredients will always give you consistent results.

    1. Elvind, do you mean a sourdough starter? If so, this is what the creators of the bread say about using a starter: “Use about 3 cups of the activated sourdough starter for a full-batch of dough, which makes 4 to 5 pounds of dough. This means that you need to decrease the water in the recipes by 1 1/2 cups, and the flour by 1 1/2 cups. Adjust the water and flour to create a dough that looks and feels just like what you get with our yeast-based recipes. Depending on the strength of your sourdough starter it may take 2 to 12 hours for your dough to rise. This slow rise is part of the beauty of a natural levain bread.”

      Hope this helps.

  47. I like to bake using mostly whole wheat flour. I’ve made 2 loaves. They have good flavor but come out too damp. The first was a one day, and the second sat in the fridge overnight. There is good rising in the oven. The second loaf I baked until internal temperature reached 220 F. My guess is that gluten development is necessary for whole wheat to have enough structure to vent the moisture. I do let the bread sit until cool before slicing. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you for the no knead technique!

    1. Arthur, did you weigh the ingredients? It’s odd that it was too moist. Whole wheat actually requires more water, due to all that bran sucking up the moisture.

  48. So easy! I don’t like complicated recipes so this one is keeper! Tastes like you worked on it all day!! Thanks David for sharing this recipe on your blog!!

  49. So I used the dough the day after, and after cooking it at 450°F for a good 40 minutes (btw, the stone I used was in the oven for a good 45 minutes), the crust wasn’t as dark as your pictures and the inside I feel Is still a little too wet in the middle. I don’t know what I did wrong. The taste is great though…

    1. Sal, the look great. You didn’t anything wrong. I’m almost certain that your oven is running cold. Do you have an oven thermometer? If not, let the bread bake another 10 to 15 minutes longer. That should do the trick.

  50. Shoot. I lost track of how many cups I put in, 5 or 6?! Should I err on the side of less flour or more? Hate to toss it.

      1. Finally found a grocery store that wasn’t sold out of “All Purpose” flour. This was my first attempt at making bread. The recipe was easy and bread was delicious. Both loaves are already gone.

  51. Hi! I am a very new baker in teh UK at my brothers place and am just getting ingredients. But I do not have access to a ‘baking stone OR an upside-down cast-iron skillet ! All we have are 3 oven trays/cookie sheets. Are the stone or iron skillet absolutely essential and if not, what might a substitute be? Thanks in advance!

    1. Veena, no the stones aren’t absolutely necessary. You do want something that can heat really well though. Any terra cotta tiles or an oven-safe skillet? I have made it on cookie sheets myself. The bottoms don’t crisp up the way they should. That’s the biggest difference.

      1. Ah, thank you so much, David. I will try to find terra cotta tiles or an oven-safe skillet. I asked my brother about tiles and he said they only had the finished tiles (from a bathroom project) which I assume will not work :-) Else I will just use the cookie sheet. My challenge now will be to find bakers yeast, both stores we went to today were out. (We had to buy essentials anyway.)

          1. Hi David ! yes I assumed that and will not use them! thanks for the tips Will post here once I get yeast and bake the bread! Much appreciation. Veena

          2. Hello! I made your bread and it was delicious. It was quite dense though. Please see my pic-should it have more bubbles inside? I let it sit on the fridge for 2 and a half days. Thank you so much

            1. Hello, Rebecca. The bread looks great! There should be more air pockets, but it’s not a deal-breaker. Did you knead it at all? Most likely you over handled the dough a bit. No worries: it’s what I did all the time early on.

  52. Today was my first time making bread in a very, very long time. It was really easy. The crust was crunchy and chewy. The taste was really good. The inside was chewy but a bit dense.

  53. Hi David,

    Would it be possible to add dried fruits, nuts, olives after I mix the dough? I had mixed the master recipe (which is quite a large batch for my small family) and don’t want to add the mix in at the first stage (so that we can have variety of bread from the master dough each time we bake). I’ve been reading through the book (healthy bread in 5 minutes a day) but could not find an answer. The guideline pretty much suggests the add-in be put together with the flour and water at the first stage. Will adding them later on (before the 2nd rise) effect the bread? Thank you so much!

  54. A great and very versatile dough. After three loaves of bread I used it to make a most excellent pizza and it turned out perfect!

      1. Eric – (or David perhaps?)I have the same question! what would the instructions be to make it a pizza crust ? just roll it and how long in oven? Thanks in advance!

        1. Veena, pull out an 8-ounce piece of dough from the dough bucket and quickly form it into a ball, no more than 30 seconds of work. Let it sit on the counter while you gather your toppings. Roll the ball out into a 1/8-inch-thick round. If the ball is resisting just let it sit for about 5 minutes and it will relax and allow you to work with it. And continue with your favorite pizza recipe! it definitely is best to use a baking stone.

  55. First time bread-maker here! I found this recipe very easy to follow and I was very excited to bake my first loaf, but something seems to have gone awry… Any idea why it would take this bizarre shape? It was in a nice round ball when it went in – I had no problem handling the dough – and it was baked it on top of a cast iron skillet. Help!

    1. Nikki, congratulations! It looks great. About the shape: I think your slash was too close the edge, so it gave the bread a place to really spread out. Also, it might not have been tightly shaped enough. But…let’s put things in context, here: If that is your first loaf, it’s an A+.

      1. My first one turned out the exact same shape and it ended up that I was tucking a little too much flour into the bottom and one part got loose basically. I was more careful the next Loaf and didn’t have that problem anymore.

  56. Because I grind my own flour from hard white wheat berries, spelt, and kamut, I’ve learned that this flour requires a great deal more liquid. I would like to try this bread but am wondering what to do about the quantities of water and flour in the recipe. Any suggestions?

    1. Carolyn, that is so cool! Home-gound flour des behave differently than its store-bought cousin. There are so many variables, the type of wheat, the fineness of the grind, etc, that contributes to the proper amount of water. We didn’t test the recipe with anything but storebought, as that’s what most people use. My suggestion would be to use regular flour and get a sense of how wet it is, then next time use your flour, adding more water to mimic the consistency.

  57. My first EVER bread. I added sugar, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder to the water and sprinkled some parmesan cheese on the bread before baking at 400 for 15 minutes in an air fryer! Thank you for this recipe! I’ve been learning to cook since the COVID 19 and my wife has been out of town. I paired it with a potato soup, olive oil & pepper dip. I can’t wait to bake more tomorrow!

  58. I can not bake anything, but your recipe made possible. Taste deliciously good.

    Thank you, Zoe and Jeff for this wonderful recipe.

  59. Couldn’t be happier with the results! Left it in the fridge for about 30 hours after the initial 2-3 hour rise. The inside was flavourful, moist and chewy encased in a beautiful, singing crust.

  60. We have been making bread in a bread machine for years. Our machine just bit the dust, we are considering not replacing it. The recipes (yeast bread) we make never require refrigeration. Is this a mandatory step? We eat plant-based and fruits and veggies take up most of the room in our frig! ;0)

  61. Hi, I love this bread. Thank you for the great recipe. May I ask in the David Says section, adding olives, onions,bacon etc. How and when do you add these ingredients? Sounds delicious. Thank you.

  62. Fantastic recipie. So easy to make. Would like to try a different shape and also to make them bigger.

  63. This is not a new recipe. It is exactly double the amounts for Laura Caulder’s “Miracle Boule”. I make her recipe often since seeing her do it on her former program French Cooking at Home. She should get credit for this simple, easy to make bread. By all means make this bread! It is excellent. I prefer letting rise the first time for 18 hours. Punch it down coated with corn meal or flour, and rise for 3 more before dumping into the hot Dutch oven. 30 minutes at 450 covered and 15 minutes more uncovered.

    1. Greg, I know that Zoë and Jeff developed the recipe almost two decades ago. Ms. Caulder’s program came out in 2010, I believe. But it’s always hard to pinpoint the exact moment something is created. Regardless, I agree with you: The recipe is excellent!

    1. Barely, Diane. (I know those who may say otherwise, although I have never owned a pizza stone and have made many a fine loaf or pizza on an upside-down baking sheet or, preferably given the high temp of the oven, an upside-down cast-iron skillet.

  64. What type of mixing bowl should I use? Ceramic, metal or plastic? I am just wondering how the bowl changes the texture of the boule.

  65. Thank you so much for this recipe! I have a couple questions (ok, I have 6 questions;) —

    1) How many pounds is the loaf in the video? And for how long would I bake a loaf of that size?

    2) Would there be a negative effect to skipping the 2-hr room-temperature rise, and stashing the dough in the fridge immediately after mixing? Then make the loaf a few days later?

    3) What effect would diastatic malted barley flour have (a few tablespoons)? I’d read somewhere that the malted barley flour is the secret to the great taste of European bread. My local baker from Germany also uses it. I added a few tablespoons, and my loaf came out totally gummy. However, I also realized that my loaf was more like 2 lbs, so I am not sure if the malted barley flour or the mistake in loaf size was the problem, or both! I didn’t weigh the dough, I just tried to make a ball the size of the one in the video, but re-reading the recipe I see that this recipe should make 4 loaves, not two. So my loaf was far too big for only 30 min.

    4) I live in South Texas. And my oven is gas. Should I do anything to accommodate for the humidity or the gas oven? I haven’t tested the oven temp for accuracy, but perhaps I should figure out how to do that.

    5) Would spritzing the dough prior to flouring and scoring the dough replace the need for a pan of water in the oven?

    6) What blade is recommended for scoring? I have been using a serrated knife.

    Sorry for so many questions. I am so excited to get this right! My first batch was promising, and my family is dying for me to keep up the practicing!

    1. KC, I’ll do my best to answer these, but my best advice is before you start experimenting, get a feel for the dough. Make one or two batches then go to town.

      1. The loaf is 1-pound and you would bake according to the recipe.

      2. Yes, there would be an effect. Negative? I can’t say. But the recipe is designed so that the rise happens first and then the dough is stored up to a week.

      3. This you would have to try! We never made it like that.

      4. Nope, no need to do anything different.

      5. No, spritzing the dough won’t replace the water in the pan.

      6. I’ve used everything from a serrated knife to a razor blade. Any sharp edge will do.

  66. I am so happy to find this recipe and can’t wait to try it. My question is, can whole wheat flour or White whole wheat flour be used. Thanks for the info.

  67. Yum, yum, yum! Super easy, I followed the instructions as written. Mixed by hand. I baked my bread in a cast iron skillet as I don’t have a baking stone. Came out perfect! Nice crust. Delicious! This is a keeper. Can I incorporate my sourdough starter into this recipe? If so, how would I do it?

    1. Hi Betsy. We’re thrilled that this worked so well for you and that you loved it. There’s nothing quite like freshly baked bread, right? Yes, you can incorporate starter into the recipe. On their site, Zoe and Jeff suggest that you can use 1 1/2 cups of activated starter, and cut the yeast amount in half. You will also need to reduce the flour by 3/4 cup and reduce the water by 3/4 cup. The initial rise may take a bit longer, depending on the strength of your starter. Let us know how it turns out, if you give it a try.

  68. OMG!!! I thought surely I had done something wrong because it CAN’T be that easy! I didn’t have a baking stone…and prob didn’t use enough salt but that’s FINE…it is AMAZING!!! I’m officially a bread maker and IN LOVE with this recipe!!

    1. Yes, Lisa, you ARE a bread baker! Am thrilled that you like this recipe so. This is exactly why we do what we do. So that readers including yourself can have this sort of experience in the kitchen. Because most “fails” are not about your ability. It’s about your recipe. You gotta have a reliable one! Merry, merry Christmas!

      1. Thank you! A great gift!! Merry Christmas. (Mine came out small, but certain I just used too little dough. I have more in the fridge to try again tomorrow!)

  69. Loved this bread. I’m wondering – how long does an uncut loaf stay fresh? If I need to bake it a few days before serving due to time constraints can I leave it in the cupboard, freeze and reheat in the oven, refrigerate? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    1. Miriam, this is what Zöe and Jeff say on their site: “We try to make only enough bread to eat on the same day, but if you have leftovers, the best way to store homemade bread is unwrapped and cut-side down on a non-porous surface like a plate, at room temperature (not in the refrigerator). This preserves the crust a little more than if you put it into a plastic bag, which softens the crust very quickly. The exception is pita bread, which is soft-crusted in the first place and is great in a plastic bag–but wait till it cools before bagging.

      How long can you store bread this way? Maybe 24 hours. You can extend that a little if you put it in a plastic bag (refrigeration optional), and it’s often OK for toasting a day or two later.”

  70. I am trying the recipe and want to make dinner rolls. But will changing the size of the loaves require me to change the baking time or temperature? Since they are smaller.

    1. Orysia, yes, it will change the timing. But this dough doesn’t make for a very good dinner roll. This is rustic with a crackly crust. You might want to think about some of the other dinner roll recipes on the site. If you do want to make rolls out of this dough, bake them for about 20 minutes. You might need to go a bit longer.

  71. Hello. I’m wanting to bake the whole recipe in a 12″ cast iron skillet to make 1 large loaf. Would you please advise me on a method? I’ve been doing 5 c. AP 1 c. wheat 1T salt 2 T instant yeast and 3 c water (120 degrees) Mix and let rise 30 min. Reshape on floured parchment and let in rise again until oven heats to 425 degrees. Lift parchment with loaf onto heated skillet and bake 15 min rotate and bake an additional 15 to 20 mins. The bread is alittle moist in the center and alittle burnt on bottom. Suggestions? Thank you!

    1. Lisa, it seems as if you’re making a different recipe or, perhaps, combining ingredients from one and method from another? This dough is supposed to rest in the fridge overnight, or, if you want to bake the same day, it needs to rest at least 2 hours on the counter. There’s no 30-minute rise. Plus, using all that dough you’re making a four-pound loaf, which is way too big. That’s why it’s burning on the bottom and not cooked in the middle. I’d suggest following this recipe to a T, then playing with it.

      1. Thank you for answering so quickly! I’m trying to yield a 12 inch diameter domed loaf of bread. Do you have any suggestions with my current recipe? Maybe cooking it longer at 400 degrees?

  72. Hello!

    Currently letting my loaf sit for the 40 min and realized I need a baking stone and I don’t have one! 😬 I am using an actual loaf metal container but I had some leftover dough that I wanted to make as the “sourdough” shape! What can I use, or should I just not make it? And for the loaf in the pan, what would you recommend for the oven times/temp? Thanks! I’m excited!

    1. Jaclyn, as far as the extra dough, you can make it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. I’ve done that many times. As far as the sandwich loaf, it depends on the size of the pan, really. If you have an instant-read thermometer, take it out when it reads about !95 to 200°F.

      1. Thank you for the quick response! It’s a 3.5×9.5in pan and yes I do have an instant thermometer! I’ll check it at about 25min!
        Thank you so much! I’ll keep you posted on how it turns out since it’s the first time trying it! 😊

          1. Well, it tastes good so that’s awesome! But, the outer layer is super super hard! Inside is good, a little doughy but not horrible, so I’m thinking it’s my oven? And the outside didn’t get that tan either! It was in for about 45min because the inside took forever to heat up to 195°. Also, when I was mixing everything in the bowl, I’d get some hard/stiff areas with the sticky, is that normal?
            Thank you!!

            1. Hi Jaclyn,

              Thank you so much for making the bread, I am thrilled you are enjoying it. I have a few of questions, then I can help you get the loaf you want.

              1. What kind of flour do you use? (Type and Brand)
              2. How long did you let the loaf rest before baking?
              3. Is your oven gas or electric?

              Thanks! Zoë

              1. Hi!! Thank you for replying! I used unbleached all-purpose Great Value brand. I let it rise for about 40-45min and have an electric stove!

              2. I made it about 10am yesterday, let it rise, and then left in fridge till the next morning! Just reread your reply! Sorry!

              3. Hi Zoë!

                Was going to try and make this recipe again, just seeing if you have any input as to what I should change? Thanks!

      2. Hello, does this recipe make two 1-lb loaves of bread? I wasn’t sure how to measure out 1 pound of dough. Thank you for your help!

        1. Hello, Sarah! If you look at the quick-glance bar (right above the ingredients list), you’ll always be able to see the yield. In this case, the recipe makes four 1-pound loaves.

  73. Haven’t made this recipe yet, but could I use it to make other styles such as granary or wholemeal – in other words using different flours? Thanks for your thoughts.

    1. Chris, you absolutely can. But because each flour has different density and absorption ratio, I would direct you to their cookbook. It’s an excellent resource to have.

  74. I am not much of a bread maker and I so want to try this recipe! However, I live at an altitude of almost a mile and I am nervous to make the bread as I am not sure what adjustments I might need to make when baking. Any suggestions?

    1. Sharon, we haven’t tried this bread at altitude, so I hesitate to give you any of the many options simply because we haven’t tested them as we do all our recipes before sharing them. I would, however, suggest you invest in Pie in the Sky, a book that’s dedicated to baking at altitude. It is a treasure of information not just for this recipe but for your every cooking and baking venture.

    2. I have made this recipe and we are 4800 Ft. It turned out great! I didn’t make any changes to the recipe…

    3. Hi, I live in Denver, 5,280ft. Many, many years ago someone told me to always add 2TBSP. of additional flour to my baking recipes. I have followed this maybe not so scientific rule of thumb for about 20 years. I followed the above directions as written, added 2 adtl. TBSP. flour (call me superstitious lol). I used a cast iron skillet heated for 30 min. in the oven as I don’t have a baking stone. Came out delicious!

  75. Yeast bread making can’t get much easier than this. The hardest part of this recipe (for me) is properly shaping the loaf so that it rises up and not out. My fist loaf tasted good but was pretty flat. I watched a few videos on how to properly shape a round loaf, and the next ones I baked were much better-looking.

  76. Hi everyone! This recipe was my first time ever making bread and it was a huge success!!! Thank you for sharing!

    I have two questions. I wonder if anyone else has tried:

    – To make this recipe with half white and half whole wheat flour?? How was it?
    – To double the loaf size (ie make a 2 lb loaf)? How long would you cook it for? This loaf is quite small for my big family!

    Thanks :)

    1. Hello, Carmen. I know the answer to both your questions is yes. If you head over to, that’s the website of the authors of this cookbook. They have a ton of resources and video that can gave you specifics.

  77. Help. My bread looks more like a flying saucer than a loaf of bread. It flattered more and more during the time before baking. I had a hard time getting the dough out of the container , it stuck to my hands really bad, the flour didn’t help. I measured the ingredients carefully but it seems to me the dough is to wet. What can I do to prevent this next time? It did raise while baking. It is fluffy and moist on the inside.
    Martina Jewell

    1. Hi. I just wanted to say I had the same problem. My first loaf came our very flat. I tried again a few days later trying to make a tighter ball and thinking it needed to rest more before baking but the longer it sat the flatter it got. my second (and third) tries were a little better but look nothing like the pictures in this article. It’s mostly flat with a small dome in the middle. Flying saucer is actually a great description. So disappointing.

      1. Ray and Martina, am incredibly sorry to hear that you had trouble with your experience. We’ve asked the author of the recipe to reach out and respond as she’s wonderful with troubleshooting and coming to understand what went awry. I’m certain she’ll have some suggestions to prevent this from happening again…

      2. Hi Ray,

        I hope you saw my response to Martina’s question. It sounds like you were having similar issues, so I hope it was helpful to you as well. Please let me know if you have any more questions about the bread.

        Cheers, Zoë

        1. Hi Zoe,

          Wow! Thanks for sharing that video. You definitely handled the dough waaaay more than I did in making my dough ball. I think I was too nervous about kneading it. It ended up looking a lot like your dough ball to start with but I figure it wasn’t shaped well or tight enough. Good know. Looking forward to trying this again soon. I’m just getting into baking bread and failing a lot lol.

    2. Hi Martina,

      It sounds like your dough is too wet. How did you measure your flour, with a scale or cups? If you use cups, did you scoop the flour out of the bin and then sweep it clean or did you spoon the flour into the cup. If you spoon the flour into the cup, it results in less flour and a very wet dough. I always suggest using a scale to make sure you are getting a consistent amount each time, but if you use cups, be sure to scoop and sweep.

      The other issue can be the proper way of shaping the dough. Here is a video on shaping wet dough.

      Thank you for trying the bread and let me know if this is helpful!


  78. I realize this is an older recipe but I’m hoping someone can shed some light on what went wrong. My loaf came out super dense, flat and pale as a ghost. I didn’t make any changes to the recipe. Cooked mine for 35 minutes at 450 on a stone preheated for close to an hour. At that point, the internal temp was well above 220 and has a super crispy crust but the loaf didn’t brown at all. Top, bottom, sides are all pretty much the color of raw dough or flour. It barely rose at all in the over too.

    1. Hi Ray,

      This really is an odd outcome, considering your internal temperature was at 220°F. Do you use an independent oven thermometer to make sure it is calibrated correctly? Do you bake in a gas oven?

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. Hello,

        Using a gas oven. Yes, I’ll have to get another thermometer to check the calibration. To be honest I’d be surprised. I’ve never had any issues with other cakes, cookies, banana bread etc., but it’s definitely worth checking. Any other ideas? I read somewhere that lack of color could be from “over-proofed” dough. I don’t know what that means, lol but could it be that?

        1. Hi Ray,

          This is actually a common result in some gas ovens. They tend to vent the steam, so it doesn’t soften or gelatinize the crust, so it is pale and dull looking. I would suggest that you try baking the bread in a Dutch oven and you will have a much nicer crust color and rise. Here is a post about baking in a DO:

          Thanks, Zoë

  79. This turned out amazing! I just changed the cooking method to a Dutch oven. I preheated the dutch oven for 30 minutes at 450 and cooked it for 30 minutes with the lid on and then 15 more with the lid off. I used parchment paper to lift it in and out of the pot. It made two round loaves. As a family, we ate a loaf in one sitting!

  80. I love this recipe but I somehow managed to fail despite the foolproof steps! When taken out of the fridge, my dough was so sticky that couldn’t add any shape or form into it–leaving me to put a big blob in the oven!

    What did it do wrong?

    Thanks so much.

    1. Valentina, the only thing you didn’t do was sprinkle enough flour on the dough before taking it out of the container. This is one sticky dough, so you need a lot of flour–on the dough and on the counter.

  81. This is the easiest artisan bread…ever! And oh so delicious. The dough came together in a flash and I anxiously waited for the rise, but it was so worth it. A couple of days later I had an itch for fresh bread again and with dough in the fridge, it was on. I got home at 5:15p and by 6:45p I had a fresh baked loaf. Yum! Yum! Yum!

  82. I tried this bread today. The dough has been in the for two days. I couldn’t wait to make it. The dough formed well into the shape and I let it rise on the counter for about 45 minutes. I baked as directed on a pre-heated pizza stone for 25 minutes. It looked great on the outside but the inside was gummy. I put it back in the oven for about 10 more minutes. The taste was good but still not done on the inside. What did I do wrong?

    1. Lyssa, sorry you had some issues. I’m almost 100% certain the culprit is your oven. I suggest buying two oven thermometers and hanging them on both sides of the oven. Chances are your oven is running cold, which would account for the gummy texture.

  83. Hello,

    I have been making bread from the recipes in the book Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day, and my family is in heaven. The first recipe I used came from your website. It was the Master Recipe of white bread. Once I made a few loaves, I had to purchase the book. Highly recommended by the way!

    The loaf pictured here is Deli Style Rye Bread and it is delicious. The caraway seeds and rye flour make this dough beautiful smelling and looking. The crust is crunchy and the inside crumb is moist, dense but surprisingly light tasting.

    I have been baking and gifting many different loaves and people are in awe of the creations. Love your website! Happy Baking!!

    a loaf of deli-style rye from Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day

  84. I found this recipe about 6 months ago. I had never made homemade any kind of bread before, but I’ve made this at least a dozen times now, following THIS recipe exactly. It is so simple!! 4 ingredients, not a lot of work involved, no kneading….and best of all, my whole family loves it!! I have never gotten the chance to refrigerate any, it all gets made on day 1 and we have no leftovers.

    1. Brandi B, where is the LOVE button that I can click for your kind and thoughtful comment?! It’s messages like this that are why we do what we do here at Leite’s. Thank you for sharing your experience. We’re thrilled to hear that everyone in your household loves it as much as we do! Looking forward to hearing which recipe on the site you try next…

  85. Instead of the baking stone and steam method, I used a heavy duty Le Creuset casserole with cover. I preheated the dish + cover in the oven for the 40 minutes while the shaped round of bread was resting. I quickly removed the lid, put the dough in and covered it back up. I baked it for 20 min with lid on, then 20 min with lid off and it turned out beautifully – the crust crackled when I removed it from the oven! Since the Le Creuset dishes are enamel coated to make them non-stick, I skipped the cornmeal flour. The bread still slid off the dish beautifully and had a lovely crust.

    As a first time bread baker, this recipe was incredibly easy to make. I now have fresh dough in my fridge and I can make a fresh loaf any night I want to.

    A woman holding an oval pot with mitts; in side is a loaf of five minute artisan bread

    1. Debbie, I love everything about this. Your technique, the crackly crust, and (especially) the fact that as a first-time bread baker you clearly know what the the heck you are doing. Thank you for sharing your modification with us. Wishing you countless more loaves of loveliness. And hoping you’ll let us know which recipe on our site you try next…

  86. Novice breadmaker here. My lovely aunt sent me a link to this recipe, and it has changed our lives. Here’s our second ever little loaf. I only wish I could send you the glorious fresh baked bread smell wafting through the kitchen.

  87. The recipe is simple to follow but I find that it has way too many steps. I don’t find the broiler pan part necessary but what happens if I don’t use it? I have time restrictions which makes it difficult for me to undergo so many steps since I need to pay attention to all of them. Wouldn’t it be easier if I just mix all the ingredients, let it rise, then shape the bread and bake and take out afterwards? I really don’t want to go to the hassle of going through the other processes.

    1. Cynthia, if you don’t use the broiler pan, you won’t get a good crispy crust. And the recipe is indeed simple. It is just a matter of mixing, rising, shaping, and baking. It may seem long or complicated, but the authors wanted to give all the information to assure success. From mixing to finished loaf, you’re looking at about 3 hours–2 hours and 50 minutes of which are unattended.

  88. A 5-star recipe for sure. My first try had a little user issue as I set my oven temp at 230°F…oops. I did crank the oven and rescued the loaf with an additional 20 min of baking at the proper temp. The second loaf was much much better. I am an avid jam and jelly maker and this bread complements it well. Cannot wait to try making a savory loaf next.

    A loaf of no-knead 5-minute artisan bread on parchment paper

  89. Amazing! My whole family looks loved it! I wonder if you could make it with whole wheat flour instead though..?

    1. Thanks, Carmen! We actually have a whole wheat no-knead bread recipe on the site. You can find it here.

  90. I find the recipe produces a heavy moist bread with a good crust. My loaves are very dense yet flavourful. I have not baked a loaf with the holes in it that others write about, and that is my goal. The bread rises nice and I get my best results when I bake it right away. I left half the batch in the fridge for 24 hours but it didn’t rise when I took it out. The second time I tried it the dough never got to room temp after three hours and didn’t really rise all. I’m not sure what the problem is. The bread is tasty but not as light as the recipe shows. If anyone has suggestions I’m open to trying something different.

    1. Brent, Jim Lahey and I have discussed this point several times. Don’t be a slave to the directions when it comes to time. There have been times I had to let the dough rise 8 or more hours at room temperature before it doubled in size. The holes are another result of time (and little handling of the dough).

      As Jim reminds readers in his books, patience is the most important ingredient when it comes to working with bread dough.

  91. “Blooby dough, not a newborn, broiler pan, pizza peel, jiggle and sing” and I know I have once again relocated my favourite “go-to” bread recipe! This is by far the best bread recipe I have ever used…I say “used” because I never quite follow any recipe but with only 4 ingredients…well, let’s say you can’t go wrong! I have tweaked this using various cheeses, seeds, flours, and more and this recipe never fails! Thanks! My co-workers thank you too! #canthavemannafromheavenalone

  92. I made this recipe using the pizza stone method as described, as well as using a cast-iron Dutch oven, and the dutch oven was superior. With the pizza stone, my crust was very tough and center was slightly undercooked.

    I baked the second loaf for 25 minutes in a covered and preheated Dutch oven and then another 15 minutes uncovered and the bread came out perfectly.

    1. Hi Alex,

      There are a few reasons you may have had less satisfying results with the pizza stone.

      1. The stone was not preheated thoroughly enough. If the stone is thick, this can take up to 60 minutes to really get it up to temperature. If you bake on a stone that is not fully preheated it will effect the crust and the ability to bake the bread through.

      2. If you are baking in a gas oven, they do not trap steam well and this creates a dull and tougher crust. It is not likely the culprit for the under baked interior.

      3. Your oven runs a bit lower than is indicated by the set temperature. Do you use an oven thermometer to check the true temp? The low temperature would effect the crust and the interior. (Because the Dutch Oven is a small, enclosed space, it will have a more intense heat and wouldn’t be as effected by the lower temp, so you would still likely have good results baking in the pot).

      Thank you, Zoë (co-author Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day)

  93. My 10 year old son and I made this bread and it was AMAZING! As good as any boule I’ve had in France. Slightly warm with salted butter – so delicious!

    1. Magnificent, Anne! Not just that you love this recipe as much as we do but that you enlist the help of your son in the kitchen. Thank you for taking the time to let us know. May you two continue to cook together for years…

  94. I have a wheat grinder that I use to make flour. With trying out this recipe can I use the same amount as listed? Or should I change the recipe? It sounds amazing, I can’t wait to try it!

  95. Despite me doing everything I could to mess it up (sticking it straight into the fridge rather than letting it rise for 2 hrs first). Not only did I get a fairly prompt reply to my question in the comments, but it was salvaged! I took it out of the fridge when I got home, stuck it in my oven and turned on the proof setting, 2.25 hrs later, it had risen beautifully and I stuck it back into the fridge. An easy recipe for delicious bread! I will be using this one over and over again.

  96. Help! I made a mistake and literally just popped it into the fridge immediately after mixing and left my house and won’t be back home for at least a few hours. Is there any way to salvage it?

    1. Poe, I’m sure it will be perfectly fine. Just take it out of the fridge and let it double in size. Then refrigerate it again until your ready to make the bread.

  97. I have just mixed up my first batch of this bread and can’t wait to see what my end results are. In the interest of full disclosure, I modified this recipe and take full responsibility should it fail. So, I added chia, flax, pumpkin & sunflower seeds as well as whole grain oats and some locally sourced honey. I also added a little additional flour, yeast, salt and water. I will share my results in a few hours.

      1. I am actually about to go bake my first loaf. I kept myself distracted so I would leave the dough alone for the night to ferment a bit. Considering I blindly modified an untested (by me) recipe, I am confident the results are going to be delish! I took pics along the way. Will post the pics once finished.

          1. My bread was a success! I slightly under-baked so we could toast and retain the chewiness. Tastes great w/salted butter, better toasted w/salted butter & jam. Am thinking sammies – ham & butterkase w/pineapple sauce or smoked turkey & gouda w/thinly sliced pears. Seasoned rare roast beef & havarti w/butter bibb.

            A round rustic loaf of bred on a wire rack

  98. What happens when you actually forget about your dough sitting out and leave it out all night, ehehe? Still salvageable?

    1. Erika, why, pray tell are you asking? I think it would be fine-ish. I’d shape gennnnntly it and bake away. Tell me what happens. (Or is this strictly hypothetical…?!)

      1. Unfortunately, that wasnt hypothetical :/… but surprisingly my bread turned out ok! It was a little more dense and the crust was a little tougher, but still soft and delicious inside. Im glad I gave it a go. Even with my goof it turned out nicely. This recipe might just be fail proof, haha.

  99. I’m considering trying this with a fresh milled flour that is sifted wheat and is 11.5% protein has anyone used local flours for this recipe or similar?

  100. I have made this bread numerous times and have had much success, although, I have not quite perfected it yet! I want my bread to be light and holey. Mine usually turns out heavy and moist. It still tastes great but I just wonder what I am doing wrong. I follow the directions exactly. I use my KitchenAid mixer with the dough attachment. What speed and for how long should I mix the dough? Also, I always bake a boule after the two hour rise before refrigeration. I use a dutch oven with the lid on as opposed to a baking stone. I cool for 30 minutes as any sooner and my crust is not brown. My crust is usually very hard..sometimes difficult to cut. My husband prefers it this way but I would like to know how to make both! Does anyone have any suggestions for me? Thanks in advance!

  101. I have a quick question, my baking stone cracked whilst the bread was breaking. Does anyone have any idea why this would happen?

    1. Nicole, wow, I’ve never had that happen while baking the bread. Did you allow the stone to heat up, or did you slide it into a hot oven? Had you washed it earlier? Water in the stone can cause it to crack. I know this is a wet dough, but there’s not enough water in it to cause the stone to crack.

  102. I made the dough Monday night and left it in the pan with lid ajar as instructed. I made the first loaf last night. Tuesday, in haste to make the bread, I forgot to slash top of dough and add flour 10/10. Is it ok to put a piece of plastic wrap plastic or a towel over the dough as got a little dry on top?


    Kim Farrell

    1. Kim, so happy you enjoyed the recipe. I’d advise against covering the dough with plastic wrap, as it could stick and prevent any slow rising in the fridge. The dough isn’t fussy. I’d make sure the lid is open just the slightest–truly. Even an eighth of an inch is plenty.

  103. Just baked my first loaves this morning, and they turned out so good I started another batch already. Nice crumb, excellent texture. This was exactly what I was looking for in a go-to bread recipe, I just didn’t anticipate finding one that was so easy to make. I just need to figure out the bake time for splitting the dough in half, rather than in quarters. If anyone has any suggestions, I am all ears! I was looking for larger loaves to make sandwiches out of, it worked well doubled up.

    1. Kim, isn’t the bread just great?! So glad you like it. I think 40 to 50 minutes should be enough for a 2-pound loaf. But to be extra sure, poke an instant-read thermometer into the loaf. The bread’s done when the thermometer reads 200°F.

  104. I started making this bread during Hurricane Harvey when, during a call from an old friend in NY to check on me, I was complaining there was no bread to be had anywhere. She said, “Do you have flour, water and yeast? Make your own, it’s easy!” Onto google, and “five minutes with no kneading” called out to me. I do low carb myself for health reasons, but this bread is so easy and so delicious, I have to cheat sometimes. Since my kids use it for toast, I bake it in a loaf pan, using half the risen dough. I have been experimenting with the rise and baking times, though. Know what else I love? Fresh baked bread like this in the store is $4 a loaf, and it has preservatives! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    1. You’re welcome, you’re welcome, you’re welcome, Paula! Love your spirit of innovation and also your spirit of moderation in allowing yourself an occasional cheat! Happy to oblige. Looking forward to hearing what you think, in due time, of other recipes on the site…

      1. Happy to report that I’ve made batches of this dough every single week since Hurricane Harvey. I usually make the smaller boules now, although my latest experiment is making little rolls. Shorter rising/baking time, and oven set at 425. These days if I don’t bring my principal and assistant superintendent some fresh bread every Monday morning in an old-fashioned paper lunch bag, they are sad—I’ve spoiled them so! I will be making these rolls for the school potluck this Wednesday.

        1. Love this, Paula! All of it! And yes, you have spoiled them so. What a lovely colleague you are! Many kind thanks for taking the time to let us know. Here’s wishing you all the magic of the season…

          1. Well, expect more visitors to your page, as I brought several loaves to the big Garrett family Christmas yesterday. Everyone not only raved about the bread, but was truly shocked, shocked, I tell you, when I told them I didn’t use a breadmaker. “But the bread is so perfect!” See, I think there’s a universal fear of breadmaking running rampant. I made sure to mention that your article/recipe puts to rest the long-standing notion that in baking you must get everything perfect or you’ll ruin it all. I made sure to tell them to read the comments and maybe see a few from Aunt Paula. :)

            1. Aunt Paula, I’m delighted to see your comment here. And I love that others enjoyed the bread as much as you did. Perhaps you’ll become our Culinary Moses, leading a multitude to the Promise Land of Perfect Loaves!

  105. Hi, I have made this dough 5 times. I have tried different plain flours just to see what works best. For some reason my bread takes about an hour to cook. Any reason why? I still get 4 lovely loaves but they just take a bit longer. I do have a big oven and i cook the 4 loaves at once. Thank you for a great recipe!

    1. Antonella, the timing in the recipe is for one loaf. I find when I make multiples of anything (cookies, cake, loaves of bread, etc.) it takes longer because there’s more cold items going in the oven. The oven has to heat up four times as much food. Another small factor is it probably takes you longer to slip four loaves in rather than one, so the oven door is opened longer, causing more heat to escape. I’d try baking just one loaf and see if the timing is correct. If not, you’re oven might need a small calibration.

      1. What is the best way to store the bread so it retains it’s crunchy crust the next day (if there’s any left over :)

        1. Antonella, the best way to store the bread is to turn it cut-side down on a cutting board. That way the inside stays nice and soft while the outside retains its crunch.

  106. I have made dozens of loaves from this recipe and just about always have it in the refrigerator. It”s requested by my friends as a hostess gift and I’m sure has garnered me many dinner invitations!

  107. How does it do with other flours like Rye, Semolina, Buckwheat, even Cornmeal? Of course I know not to use these things as anything but additive, but how about things like Millet? This dough is basically fermenting in the reefer, right? Does the salt keep it from souring?

    1. Andi, I can’t answer your question fully. I have used rye in some of the recipes in their book, and it works fine. As to the others, I can’t say. There are too many variables when you consider each flour. I’d suggest purchasing their book–it has recipes for a multitude of flours.

  108. My husband and I have been making bread using your recipe for a long time. It is amazing. We share our bread with our friends, family, and our kids. We are the cool teachers, neighbors, and friends. People prefer this bread than any other goodies we share. It is crusty, tasty, and so easy to make. Pure, fresh, and satisfying. The only problem we have is that it goes fast. Everybody loves it but we also love sharing it. I don’t know why but this is something that brings us close to old times, traditions, and nature. I am from Greece, the smell while the bread is baking brings me home every time. Thanks for sharing this recipe. We LOVE it!

  109. Hello, I sell bread at the local farmers market and I would love to try this recipe! Just wondering, if I want to put 4 loaves in the oven at a time, would i need to change the amount of time for baking? Or would i need to change the amount of water poured in the broiler pan? Also, if I want to make 2lb loaves, how much longer will I need to bake the loaves?
    Thanks in advance!! ?

    1. Rachel, what a great idea. Best of luck with that. You would need to change the baking time somewhat because you’re lowering the temperature of the oven more by baking four times the bread. I can’t give you a precise time because I’ve never done that. Look for a rich brown crust and a hollow sound when tappped on the bottom. Yes, I would pour in a bit more water: perhaps 1 1/2 cups. And for 2-pound loaves, 45 to 50 minutes should do it.

  110. Is it possible for it to rise for too long? I got involved with something with my son and left it out to rise for 3 hours, in a humid, tropical climate.

      1. It seemed to spread a bit and I didn’t get a super high boule like some of the photos, but it wasn’t super dense. I made it with fresh rosemary, and the unbelievable aroma coming out of the oven more than made up for any lack of rise. Slathered with French butter and my 8 year old nearly ate the whole loaf. The crust was perfect. Could have been a tad more done inside, next time will use a thermometer and not just thump it. Inspired to keep trying. Thanks!

  111. I’d like to try this recipe, but am not sure how to break off a pound of dough – about how many pounds does the recipe make?

  112. Alright…I just made it. Added some Italian seasoning and garlic and a little ground flaxseed for the husband’s health. It’s really great. Tastes wonderful. Has a BEAUTIFUL firm, crisp yet chewy crust. So fantastic.

    However, the inside is a little dense though. Not as airy or holey as I’d like. Really thick and spongy…in the best way possible. Haha. Don’t get me wrong…for my first time making bread EVER, it’s so amazing. Not wrong or bad…just different than I was expecting. I also didn’t let it refrigerate overnight, but just for a few hours. No time to wait! ;)

    Any suggestions for a lighter inside?

    1. Maisie, congests on baking bread! Regarding your question, let the dough sit in the fridge the required amount of time and give it some extra time on the counter. That should give it a bit more lift.

  113. Hi, I recently started baking artisan bread. I have a question. This recipe states all purpose flour. I live in South Africa. We have cake flour and bread flour. Do I use bread flour? The same quantity – 910g? If I want to use whole wheat or brown bread flour, will the liquid amount of 680g still be the same?

    Thank you and look forward to your feedback.


    1. Henriette, yes, you can use the same amount of bread flour. I’ve never made it with whole wheat or brown bread flours, so I can’t confidently say the amount of liquid won’t change.

  114. Used this recipe, but halved it and also added a pinch of sugar to the dough mix.

    Preheated oven with my baking stone in it.

    Removed dough from the bowl at approximately 2 hours. To my work surface, which had been dusted with a little flour. Did NOT punch it down. Gently dusted the top with some flour as well and formed it into a large long wide oval. Not as thin as a regular baguette. Ran a blade lengthwise along the top and baked for about 25 minuues and transferred to a cooking rack. Brushed the top with a little butter and let cool.


    Nice crust but not too hard. And lovely crumb (not too dense).

    I did not do any refrigeration at all. 2 hours on the counter and straight into the oven.

    Thank you so much!!

  115. So I tried this for my very first attempt at making bread ever. I don’t have a stone and really didn’t know what to expect for a finished product. I built the dough using the measured weight of the flour and water rather than the volume. I mixed the ingredients in a bowl according to the recipe and let it rest at room temperature for a little more than 2 hours then put it in the fridge. I removed the dough from the fridge an hour before baking and tried to take about half it out to make a boule. Much to my dismay everything deflated as soon as I started to slice off the part I wanted. I was left with this sticky mass in my hand and a totally deflated mass in the container (and I am saving this for a second attempt). I managed to roughly form a boule and placed it on a perforated pizza pan that had been coated with cornmeal. Since I don’t have a stone I thought using my pizza pan that I use when making pizza would work. I left the dough sit for the 40 minutes (very disappointed that it didn’t rise) liberally dusted the top with flower and then used a sharp blade to score it. I popped it in the oven at 450 (along with some water in a pan as instructed). To my surprise after 15 to 20 minutes the boule had increased in height by 3 to 4 times! After 35 minutes the bread was a nice golden brown so I pulled it from the oven and let it cool. I was surprised that the loaf slid right off the pan. The result was a dense bread with lots of little holes, a crispy crust with a nice chew. It was a great first attempt and I think it was edible. My wife loved it thinks I’m a genius. Next time around I need to figure out how to make the inside cook a little more as the bread was a little gummy at the center bottom of the loaf. I think if I cut the dough a little deeper next time (I was afraid to cut a half inch deep since the dough was only about 1 inch high) it may help get the moisture out of the bread. Also I read where I could turn off the oven and crack the oven door a couple of inches I could leave the loaf inside to cool and that may help. Anyway I think this is a fool proof recipe for some great classic bread. Thanks.

    1. Terry, you bet. Have you tested your oven temperature with a thermometer? It might be running hot, which would bake the crust but leave the inside a bit gummy. I also have an instant read thermometer that I stick into the loaves. I pull them out when it’s between 200 and 210 degrees F.

      1. Thanks for the tip David. I bought an oven thermometer on the weekend to test the oven temp. When my oven says 450 the thermometer says 430. When I put the loaf into the oven and add the water to the pan the temperature drops to 400 and stays there so I baked the loaf for 35 minutes. This time I scored the loaf deeper maybe a half inch deep. The loaf rose nicely. The outside is nice and brown and crispy, There is plenty of nice air pockets inside the loaf but it is still gummy. I don’t have a instant read thermometer so maybe I will get one of those next. I don’t think I could have left the loaf in the oven much longer as it was starting to smell over cooked.

        Sorry but I can’t seem to attach pictures here to show you what it looks like.

        1. Terry, as long as there was progress, I’m happy. And I think an instant-read thermometer would be a good idea. The way you don’t have to rely upon just your nose! You can send a picture to me at david @ leitesculinaria . com. I’ll happily add it to your comment.

  116. Turned out gorgeous! Easy. Love the slightly sourdough taste. Could this be made into a rye loaf? I love sourdough rye.

  117. Hi, I made this bread three times. The first time it came out perfect. The last two times, the dough seemed to be a bit mushy even though it was thoroughly cooked. I’m using the same cooking methods and techniques that I used the first time but something must be off. Any idea what would cause this? It’s just too soft. I use a cooking thermometer and the temperature is over 220°.

    1. Jenny, thanks so much for letting us know about your experience. I’ve asked Zoe Francois, who created this recipe, for her advice and either she or I will be back with you shortly!

    2. Hi Jenny,

      My apologies for the delay in responding. How old was the dough when you baked it the last two times? If the dough had sat for a number of days without being used, it may have lost some of it’s rising power, which can result in being a bit denser. Did it seem different in consistency when you pulled it out of the container? Any more details you could give me would help me advise you better.

      Thanks, Zoë

      1. Hi Zoe,

        I must’ve missed the notification that you replied. Anyhow, no the dough was fresh. I’ve made it a few more times and experimented with letting the dough fully cool. Although it was much less mushy it wasn’t that perfect artisan bread texture yet. I don’t have a Dutch oven so I’m wondering if it has to do with that. I was using a Pyrex dish with a lid… When I bake my batch today I plan on trying a stainless steel pot with aluminum foil covering it. I still can’t figure out what changed since the first time I baked this bread.

        1. Jenny, I think the problem is this recipes doesn’t call for a Dutch oven or any kind of pot. That’s a different artisan bread recipe. I know that some readers have baked the bread that way, but that’s not how the recipe is written. I’ve made this bread a lot, and have never used a pot.

          1. David,

            I did try it without the Dutch oven and baked it in a Wolfgang Puck pressure cooker oven, sealed and without a tray of water because there was no room for it. It came out great, close to perfect, I would say. But the bread consistency is kind of heavy the next day. Is there a problem with slicing it when it’s still warm right out if the oven? Will that affect texture?

            1. Jenny, I can’t really say what’s causing the heaviness. This recipe isn’t written for a pressure cooker oven or a Dutch oven. Have you made it is regular oven? And yes, it’s always best to let the loaf cool completely before slicing.

  118. Hi! I just popped my first try loaves in the oven, I’m so happy with how easy this was to make. Everything was going great and my loaves were poofed up but I really had trouble with the scoring. I used a new serrated knife and tried to slash quickly, but it snagged and deformed the loaf. Tried working slower on the second loaf, but that didn’t work great either. They’re not ruined and still looked pretty good, but the were bent out of shape. Any advice on how to do better next time? Thanks!!

      1. That did make a difference, thanks David! I’ll get better with practice too!

        I tried to mix in some caramelized onions while I was shaping the loaves; it was difficult to do. They came out well, but the onions could have been better distributed. Would the dough still work if I mix them in from the very beginning?

          1. Yes that sounds much easier; I’ll do that next time. I’m loving these loaves! I haven’t bought bread from the store since I made my first ones:)

  119. Has anyone ever tried making raisin bread using this dough recipe? i’m a complete novice bread maker but would be as simple as adding cinnamon and raisins to the dough when making it and baking as normal?

        1. Dave, it is, indeed, incredibly versatile! I wanted to share some advice with you on adding raisins (or nuts or olives) to bread dough from our resident professional bread baker. I’ve tweaked it slightly as it was in response to a reader query about adding olives to ciabatta, although it applies to raisins and any bread dough as well. There are two methods she recommends. Here’s what she has to say: “The first method gives a stronger raisin-y taste all through the bread by incorporating the raisins at the beginning of the kneading. This is what most beginners do with any addition such as olives, nuts, cheese. Yes, this means a more uniform distribution and the taste of the addition throughout the loaf, but I almost never do it this way because it requires adjustments to hydration (more for dry ingredients, less for wet ones) and, more important, it can interfere with gluten development. The second method, my preferred technique, is to add the raisins (or olives, nuts, cheese) after the dough has fully developed—that is to say, after it has been kneaded completely. Just knead the raisins in by hand before the first rise. With this method, you should not need to adjust the water. A problem that arises with additions (using either method above) is that they pop through the dough and whatever bits are exposed to the heat get dried out and hard. Not pleasant when it happens. With a regular country loaf, there’s two ways to minimize that. You can simply push the pieces that peek out after shaping the dough back into the dough before setting it to proof. That helps quite a bit. A fussier, but totally effective, approach is to cut off a piece of plain dough before the addition. I eyeball it at about 1/4 of the dough. Add the raisins to the larger pieces and shape the loaf. Then roll out the reserved piece to a thin sheet and drape it around the shaped dough, sealing on the bottom. This keeps all the bits inside, entirely preventing pop-throughs.” Kindly let us know how it goes!

          1. I absolutely adore this bread and have made a dozen or more loaves with great success. I have only tried the whole wheat recipe once (with hard red winter wheat) and while it was a bit denser than the AP version, it was still quite good.

            My question is about the addition of other ingredients. Do you mean above that you mix the dough as you would normally and then add in cheese/olives/nuts/herbs and then do the 40-90m rise? How much volume of additions would be acceptable to add? And would you grate or cube cheese? Would garlic or onion be better added as powdered or fresh chopped/minced? I’m just looking for some ideas to kick off my experimentation!

            Thank you to Jeff and Zoe for this unbelievable bread!!

            1. Lovely to hear that you adore this bread, Maddie! Thanks so much for taking the time to let us know. As for the addition of other ingredients, yes, in the method described in my comment above, I say to add those sorts of ingredients as you’re kneading the dough before the first rise. I think the amount is going to be dependent on personal preference and will depend on the specific ingredient but figure about a handful. As for the cheese, it depends if you want a more wispy hint of cheese that almost melts into the dough (grate) or blobs of cheese throughout (cube). If adding garlic, I would add roasted garlic that you’ve mashed into a paste or minced garlic that you’ve sauteed but beware garlic can be so pungent!