This No-Knead Bread recipe is the best and easiest way to make perfect bread at home! No kneading is needed! This recipe is super easy to follow and makes the best bread loaf at home.
Why This Recipe Works
This bread is exactly what your next sandwich or a steaming bowl of soup needs. A thick slice of home-baked bread. It's simply too easy not to try it. Just stir all of the ingredients in a bowl, cover, and let sit overnight. Next day, bake, slice, and enjoy!
Homemade bread is one of my very favorite things to bake. It's very gratifying and be used for sweet sandwiches (peanut butter and strawberry jelly come to mind) or loaded with cheese and meat, tomatoes, lettuce, and peppers OR dipped into thick tomato soup. By the way, this bread is amazing for grilled cheese sandwiches!
- Start by measuring out the flour by scooping it with a spoon into a measuring cup, then level off the top.
- Combine water, sugar, and yeast in a bowl. Add flour and stir in well.
- Cover the bowl and let the dough sit for 24 hours. It should double in size.
- Place dough onto parchment paper, shape into a ball and let sit while you preheat the oven.
- Place dough in Dutch oven and bake, covered, until the top is golden. Remove lid and bake for a few more minutes.
What to use if you don't have a Dutch oven?
If you don't have a cast iron Dutch oven with a lid, you can use a shallow cast iron skillet and a deep cast iron skillet. Use the deep skillet as a lid. The whole setup is heavy so be aware and have kitchen mittens on hand. You need to create a closed environment for the bread to bake with steam.
What size Dutch oven should I use to make this bread?
I've tested this recipe with different sizes of the Dutch oven over the years and anything between 3qt and 5 qt will give you great results. If you want to use a bigger pot, double the recipe. Keep in mind, that if baking the bread in a 3-quart Dutch oven, the bread will have more height, while bread baked in a 5-quart Dutch oven will spread out more.
Can I make this bread with a yeast starter?
The starter, also called levain, is a mixture made with naturally occurring yeast. To make it, you mix flour with water and let it sit letting the yeast and bacteria activate. You can use it in place of yeast in this recipe. Our readers used about 1/4 cup of starter to make the no-knead bread and had fantastic results!
- sugar: There are a lot of no-knead bread recipes out there, most of them using only 3 ingredients: flour, yeast, and water. While these ingredients are indeed required, I do not think they will make the best-tasting bread. You need to add sugar to make the yeast happy and bubbling and salt to give the bread flavor. So it's 5 ingredients but the result is the best bread you will make at home.
- flour: Make sure you measure out flour the proper way. Do not dunk the measuring cup into the flour container, but use a spoon to scoop it out into the cup, then level off the top.
- slicing: Cool the bread completely before slicing or you will pull the crumb and the slices won't have the pretty air bubbles.
- garlic and herb: add minced garlic and fresh or dried herbs to the dough before rising.
- lemon and garlic: add citrus zest and minced or roasted garlic to the dough before rising.
- cranberries and nuts: add dried cranberries (or any fruit) and chopped nuts to the dough before rising. Orange zest would be great too!
Yes, honey or maple syrup can be used in place of sugar.
A dough made with active dry yeast rises slower, hence the overnight step. If you are using instant yeast, you can cut the rising time to even 2 hours. Watch the dough if it doubles in size. You will also need to use more of it, I suggest 1 teaspoon of instant yeast. The bread will taste the same, but the crumb won't have as many holes.
If the dough doesn't double in size after the rising time, it means the yeast is old and it didn't activate. Start over with a fresh batch of yeast. Also, make sure you measure out the flour properly.
Yes, bread flour or all-purpose flour can be used.
More easy bread recipes:
If you like this recipe and make it, let me know in the comments below! Don't forget to rate it if you enjoyed it!
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- ¼ teaspoon granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 ½ cup warm water
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar, salt and yeast. Add water and stir just until incorporated. Do not overmix. The dough will be shaggy.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit on the counter, at room temperature for 8 to 24 hours. The dough will rise and have lots of air bubbles.
- The next day, lightly flour a piece of parchment paper. Place dough onto paper. With floured hands, shape into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap.
- Preheat oven to 450° F. Adjust rack to lower position. Place Dutch oven inside. Preheat for 30 minutes.
- When oven is ready, carefully place the parchment paper with dough inside the Dutch oven. Cover with Dutch oven lid and bake for 30 minutes. Remove lid and bake 7 to 10 minutes more or until the top is golden brown, has cracks.
- Carefully remove Dutch oven from oven. Remove parchment paper with bread and place on a wooden cutting board. Let cool completely.
- To measure out flour the proper way: do not dunk the measuring cup into the flour container, but use a spoon to scoop it out into the cup, then level off the top.
- If you are not sure if your yeast is still good, dissolve 1/4 of a teaspoon of it in 1/2 cup of warm water. If it foams up, your yeast is still good!
- Cool the bread completely before slicing or you will pull the crumb and the slices won't have the pretty air bubbles.
- Please note, that the nutrition value can vary depending on what product you use. The information below is an estimate. Always use calorie counter you are familiar with.