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May 27, 2019

No Knead Bread

Making no knead bread is a relatively easy way to achieve a crusty loaf. All you need is flour, water, salt, yeast... and time. 

No Knead Bread

One of my favorite ways to blow off steam is to bake bread. In fact, a few weekends ago, after a long five weeks of creating an on line class in the evenings for my teaching job, I cranked out three bread recipes over the two days, and it didn't feel like work at all.

It felt creative. There is something about it... you just have to try it to understand. Peter Reinhart, Nancy Silverton, Ken Forkish, Chad Robertson, and countless others say it best in their books.

No Knead Bread sliced open

If you have never baked bread, this is the perfect way to start. This bread is wonderful. When you take it out of the oven, you can actually hear the crust crackle and sing! Seriously. The crust is thin but crispy, and the crumb (interior) is full of holes and just begs to be buttered. This will get you into bread baking.

I promise.

How to make no knead bread:

To make the dough, you simply mix the ingredients in a bowl with you hands, a dough whisk, or a large spoon until they are combined in a bowl large enough for the dough to triple in size. Cover it, and set it aside for at least 12 hours, and up to 18 hours.

The dough will be sticky and bubbly when it's ready to shape. It will look a lot like this when you turn it out of the bowl.

No Knead Bread dough

To shape the loaf, you will need a dough scraper to fold the dough over itself to form a ball. If you scoot the shaped loaf on your work surface with the dough scraper, seam side down, you will be able to develop surface tension on the loaf, which will help it stay round and not flatten while baking.

The second rise should be in a flour dusted tea towel-lined bowl, and will only be one to two hours.

A long fermentation (first rise) and a very wet dough take the place of kneading to produce a crusty and airy artisan style loaf. In addition, you bake the loaf in a preheated cast iron Dutch oven to create a hot and steamy environment similar to professional bread ovens.

  1. See this post for photos of the process of transferring the risen loaf to the hot Dutch oven. 
  2. After removing the lid from the Dutch oven, I usually transfer the loaf to a sheet pan to finish baking to prevent it from getting too charred on the bottom. 

Crusty No Knead Bread

No knead bread first became well known when Mark Bittman introduced it to the world in his New York Times column in 2006. He learned of the technique from Jim Lahey of Sullivan Street Bakery in NYC.

I hope you'll give it a try!

This is an updated post from 2012. One of the original photos is at the end of this post.

Easy Crusty No Knead Bread

No Knead Bread Recipe

Easy Crusty No Knead Bread sliced
Yield: 1 10-inch round loaf


  • 3 cups (400 grams) bread flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons (8 grams) salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1 gram) instant yeast
  • 1 1/3 cups (300 grams) cool water (approximately 55 to 65 degrees F)
  • Wheat flour and rice flour for dusting


How to cook No Knead Bread Recipe

  1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and leave out at room temperature for about 12 to 18 hours.
  2. Using a dough scraper, spatula, or bench knife, gently scrape the dough out onto a floured surface.
  3. Wet your hands and your dough scraper and gently stretch and fold the dough into a ball of sorts. Imagine grabbing each side of the bread blob as if it were an envelope and folding it from the bottom to the middle from all four sides. The scraper and your hand should be wet so you don't stick. 
  4. Place the ball, seam side down, on your work surface and tuck the scraper under it all around to create tighten the loaf just a little. 
  5. Line a 9 inch bowl or banneton basket with a tea towel and generously dust it with flour, bran, or a 50/50 mixture of wheat and rice flour.
  6. Place the dough ball in the bowl, seam side up.
  7. Spray the top of the dough with spray oil and cover loosely with oiled plastic wrap. Let it sit for one to two hours.
  8. While the dough is proofing, place a large cast iron Dutch oven in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees.
  9. Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven and remove the lid.
  10. First, remove the plastic wrap from the bowl, and top the dough with a piece of good quality parchment paper.
  11. Top the parchment with a dinner plate, and then flip the whole thing over.
  12. Remove the towel from the dough and lift the dough with the parchment paper and place it in the Dutch oven, leaving the parchment under the dough. 
  13. Optional: Score the dough with a single slash. 
  14. Cover the pan and return it to the oven for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 to 20 minutes more, until the interior of the bread reaches 210 degrees. (See note above about transferring the loaf to a sheet pan for the final 15 to 20 minutes.) 
  15. Cool on a wire rack. Do not cut into it immediately as much as you would like to or it will not be finished cooking and may be gummy. If you want warm bread, reheat in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes before serving.
bread, no-knead bread
Created using The Recipes Generator
This recipe was adapted from Jim Lahey's book, My Bread: The Revolutionary No-Work, No-Knead Method. 

Would you like to comment?

  1. Thanks for sharing.......looks wonderful..............I sent this website off to a few of my friends!!!

  2. Looks very nice! I use SAF Instant Yeast for all my commercial baking, too.

  3. Bought bread flour and a cast iron dutch oven. Ready to make bread!! Saw the last week and I was really excited- it looks fool proof. Can't wait to try it out on Emily.

    1. Definitely let me know how it turns out!

    2. It was terrific! So yummy. Going to have to do that again. Thanks for the inspiration.

    3. Thanks Sarah! You'll have to try sourdough next! =)

  4. Kneading is my least favorite part of bread making. I'm never confident I've done it well so no knead is perfect for me!

  5. This is like the lazy person's bread! I love that there is no kneading involved and it looks amazing!

  6. That's a great recipe and method, one I used to do all the time, in my pre-blogging days. Haven't made it in a while, good that you brought it back to my radar....

    1. It had been a long time for me too. It's so fool proof!

  7. I love baking bread, but love the smell of it baking and that first hot slice more! I will be making this! Love the no-knead!!

  8. It looks so perfect! Funny that you say you work off steam by baking bread. Kneading dough does sound like a good way to do so, but of course you don't knead this one!

    1. For me it's the time it takes. Makes me slow down.

  9. I always love seeing your breads and that looks so good!

  10. What a beautiful loaf! It has been a while since I made bread, I need to get back in the habit.

  11. Oh wow does that look delicious. I haven't made bread in a long time.

  12. This looks fantastic! Thank you for all of the tips.

  13. I know my husband would love it if I started making bread, and this one looks like a delicious place to start! Love the crusty, golden top!

  14. I was a total beginner... my first loaf was amazing. Ive now made 3 loaves. My next loaf will be her Dill Bread .


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