The Easiest Homemade Bread

This recipe has circled the foodie world for a few years now, I must’ve been out of the loop. Either way, it’s time to let you in on this secret of simplicity: how to make the easiest homemade bread!

Texas 032Emily, thank you for the baking lesson! Jim Lahey, you’re a genius.

This loaf is made up of four ingredients: flour, salt, yeast & water. Yup, that’s it. And all you do is mix them together. I know.

You do need to have a little patience; this bread is easy, but not quick. Prep time is ~5 minutes, but the wait time is ~20 hours, total. Stick with me here…

No-Knead Bread, via Jim Lahey

3 cups All Purpose Flour (option: substitute ~1/3 – 2/3 Whole Wheat Pastry Flour)
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Yeast
1 5/8 cup Water

Combine the flour, salt and yeast in a bowl. Add the water and stir until a dough forms. Cover this bowl with plastic wrap; let it sit and rise for ~12-18 hours at room temperature.

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…12-18 hours later:

On a floured counter, sprinkle the dough ball with flour and fold it over once or twice. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 15 more minutes.

…15 minutes later:

{We were a little lax with the recipe’s Step 3}. Cover the ball with a floured towel on either side and let it rise for another 2 hours.

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One half hour before the dough will be ready, preheat the oven to 450*, placing a heavy covered pot (i.e. Dutch oven or cast iron pot) in the oven as it heats.

…2 hours later:

It’s time! Place your dough in the pot, and bake for 30 minutes with the lid on.

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Remove the lid, and bake another 10-20 minutes, until the top is golden brown and flaky.

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Let it cool, and slice it up! You’ll never go store-bought again.

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Have you tried making your own bread before?

I was pleasantly surprised at how simple this process is! I’ve always been intimidated by the yeast and kneading – two things that are easy to screw up. But this could not be more fool-proof! It may test your patience, but the kitchen smell and fresh warm loaf are completely worth the wait.

Do you have a different bread recipe to share? Let’s see it! I’m open to the challenge.



Filed under about me, baked goods, food, recipes

10 responses to “The Easiest Homemade Bread

  1. now can we just make it Gluten Free? Ahhh, that would be amazing (for my gut).
    It looks so perfect!
    so…’s the beach?

  2. Anna

    These are my 2 favorite bread recipes. Both are super easy and also require no kneading. I grew up eating my mom’s homemade whole wheat bread, but I also grew up watching her spend one Sunday a month kneading and baking. I love homemade bread, but not the hassle. These are the perfect combo!

    Bubbly Beer Bread
    * 1 1/2 Cups White Flour
    * 1 1/2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour
    * 4 1/2 Tsp. Baking Powder
    * 1/3 Cup Brown Sugar
    * 1/4 Cup Butter (Melted)
    * 12 Oz. Beer (you can use whatever kind you like – I love it w/ Blue Moon)

    1. Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
    2. Mix all dry ingredients together.
    3. Add beer and mix thoroughly until dough is still.
    4. Place dough in a lightly greased loaf pan.
    5. Drizzle the melted butter over the top.
    6. Bake until golden brown (approx. 60 minutes).
    7. Remove from oven and let rest for 15 minutes.
    8. ENJOY!
    Tip: Sifting flour for bread recipes is a must. Most people just scoop the 1 cup measure in the flour canister and level it off. That compacts the flour and will turn your bread into a “hard biscuit”. If you do not have a sifter, use a spoon to place the flour into the 1 cup measure.

    Whole Wheat Molasses Bread
    This is a great and versatile recipe that is open for variations and additives of your favorite flavors.

    * 2 Tsp. honey
    * 2 2/3 Cup lukewarm water
    * 4 Tsp. dry yeast
    * 3 Tbsp. Molasses
    * 5 Cups whole wheat flour
    * 1/2 Tsp. salt
    * 1/4 Cup wheat germ (I’ve made it w/o this before and it still turns out well)
    * 1 Tbsp. Oatmeal (optional)

    1. Preheat oven to 400 Degrees F.
    2. Stir 2 teaspoons honey into 2/3 cup lukewarm water.
    3. Sprinkle yeast over the mixture. Set aside for 10 minutes.
    4. Combine 3 tablespoons molasses with 2/3 cup warm water and combine with yeast mixture.
    5. Stir into flour. Add salt, wheat germ and 1 1/3 cups warm water. Dough will be sticky.
    6. Pour dough into a non-stick loaf pan.
    7. Smooth top with wet spatula.
    8. Sprinkle Oatmeal over top of loaf, if desired.
    9. Allow to raise to top of pan.
    10. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes.
    11. Cool 10 minutes on a rack, then turn out of pan.
    12. Cool before slicing.
    13. ENJOY!

    • heatherdc

      Oh, yes, Beer Bread is the best! I’ve actually made it with JUST Flour, sugar & beer before. Works like a charm 🙂

      Thanks for sharing, Anna!

  3. I’ve always been intimidated by bread too. Maybe I’ll give this a shot.

  4. that’s almost identical to my pizza crust recipe. 1 cup warm water, 1 package of yeast, 1 tsp suger, 1 tbsp oil, add flour until awesome (2 cups wheat flour).

    i also posted a great beer bread recipe that made the most amazing bread i have ever eaten in my life, i’ll see if i can find it and send it to you. YUM.

  5. I’ve always assumed that bread was above my skill level. But I will definitely have to try this!

  6. Becky

    I use my breadmaker. I have one with a timing feature so I can come home to fresh bread or wake up to the smell of it in the morning. I also recently made a cake in my breadmaker. Not your usual cake shape but it was a tasty experiment.

  7. mmm, i’ve seen a couple other bloggers make this bread before too. i’ve never made my own bread before. only quick breads. i definitely think i could handle this one though!

  8. That looks amazing; I will definitely try that recipe! Thanks for sharing.

  9. Pingback: Vacation Mode | Dietitian on the Run

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