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No-Knead, No-Fail Freshly Baked Bread

If you've got flour and yeast in the pantry you can start a batch of bread that will be warm and fragrant by dinner time. Whipping up the dough takes less than five minutes, too. Bonus!

Let's get right to it.

In a large container add and stir together:

3.5 cups very warm water

2 packages of yeast

1.5 tablespoons of salt

1 tablespoon of olive oil

To the water mixture, add:

6.5 cups of flour

Stir it all together with a wooden spoon. Toward the end you will likely need to get your wet hands in there to form a ball. Leave the ball in the container and cover loosely to rise.

After two hours turn the dough out onto a floured surface and divided into four pieces*, shaping each into a ball by tucking the ends under.

Let rest 1 hour, but after 1/2 hour turn the oven to 450 degrees.

Flour the top of each ball and with a serrated knife cut an "x" so the bread will rise nicely when baking. Put two dough balls on a sheet lined with parchment paper and bake 20-30 minutes until nicely brown. During baking you can mist the loaves with water from a clean squirt bottle 2-3 times. This will ensure a crispy crust. When done, repeat with the remaining two loaves.

Get the butter ready***, but be sure to let them cool a bit before diving in!

* the recipe makes four small-medium round loaves. If you choose to make one at a time, just leave the remaining dough in a loosely lidded container in the refrigerator till ready to use (within a week).

** these make great gifts, fresh from the oven, for neighbors.

*** try getting some butter to room temperature and adding in some honey to make honey butter.


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