A Simple No-Knead Bread Recipe That You’ll Love!!

No-knead bread became highly popular overnight when Jim Lahey’s recipe first appeared via Mark Bittman in the New York Times approximately 10 years ago. A delicious loaf of bread that requires no starter, no stand mixer, no kneading? Sign me up, right?

This recipe includes both the traditional, overnight version and a speedy bread-in-a-hurry version that only needs to rise for 1 1/2 hours. Something for everyone!

No-knead bread is practically foolproof since you toss all the ingredients into a bowl, mix everything up, and allow the yeast to do its thing. The overnight rise gives no-knead bread its sourdough-type flavour and soft, airy texture. The crust comes out crispy and delicious – hence its popularity. The faster version is still delicious and will give you a fabulous crunchy-on-the-outside loaf of bread quickly. Both versions allow you to add extra seasonings if you wish, and you can have the crust as crunchy or as light as you want, depending on the baking time.

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Your home will smell like a heavenly bakery as your bread cooks – and you may never want to make kneaded bread again!

Let’s get to the recipes. The ingredients and method differ slightly.

No-Knead Bread Recipe
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What you need to make no-knead bread

To make this easy no-knead bread, you’ll need the following equipment:

Using a thermometer will help you with controlling proofing times. For accurate dough temperature readings try this thermometer from Gdealer

Traditional overnight no-knead bread

Ingredients

Ingredients used to make this no knead bread
  • 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast*
  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour**
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water, between 105 to 110 degrees F (use a cooking thermometer if you have one. The water should feel very warm but not hot)
When you measure your flour, pour the flour into the measuring cups rather than scoop them into the flour for a more precise measurement. If you'd rather the measurements in grams see below.

Can I use instant yeast for this recipe?

If you only have instant yeast, use half the amount called for in the recipe. In other words, the overnight version requires 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast. The fast version requires 1 1/4 teaspoons of instant yeast. Simple!

Method for traditional overnight no-knead bread

1) Start the dough

Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Add in the warm water with a spatula or wooden spoon, stirring till the dough is well combined. The dough will be quite loose, which is normal.

Stir the ingredients
Into a mass

2) Bulk rise

With plastic wrap, cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 12 to 18 hours at room temperature.

The first rise

3) Shape into a ball

Next, place the dough on top of a floured surface and fold it on top of itself a few times. The dough should start to tighten up and hold its shape. Form a round ball of dough, adding extra flour as needed if the dough feels sticky.

Take the longest edge
and fold it over
Repeat until it forms a ball
Into a ball

4) Prepare to rise!

Cut some parchment paper that’s slightly bigger than the base of your dutch oven. Add a pinch of flour on top of the dough ball, flip it onto the parchment paper. Sprinkle more flour on top, then cover again with the plastic wrap so that it can rest while you preheat the oven.

Add some flour to the top
Cover to prevent the dough drying out

5) Preheat your Dutch Oven

Place an empty double Dutch Oven (I have been using mine from Uno Casa) inside your oven***, and then set the temperature to 450 degrees F (230C). Leave it in the oven while your dough continues to rest at room temperature.

Be sure to put the Dutch oven in the oven BEFORE turning on the heat to avoid cracking your Dutch oven. This recipe calls for a Dutch oven as it creates an even heat distribution that steams the bread while it bakes.

6) Time to bake

Using oven mitts, carefully take out the Dutch oven. Lift the edges of the parchment paper along with the ball of dough to gently transfer both to the Dutch oven.

Drop the bread into the dutch oven carefully

7) Bake it!

Cover the ball of dough with the Dutch oven lid, and bake for 30 minutes. Then remove the lid and bake for 10 to 20 minutes more to allow the top crust to brown to your liking.

8) Remove and cool

Remove the bread from the oven, remove the cover, and lift the edges of the parchment paper so that you can transfer your bread to a wire rack to cool. Let the bread cool for at least 60 minutes before slicing, serving, and enjoying!

The bread is baked and cool

Nutritional information per loaf

Calories: 1300kcal | Carbohydrates: 285g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 0g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 0g | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 19mg

Ingredients in grams

I prefer using scales to measure my ingredients as it gives a more accurate amounts. If you’d like to use scales too, use: 2 grams of active dry yeast, 420 grams of all-purpose flour, 8 grams of sea salt and 340 grams of warm water.

Quick version of no-knead bread

To speed to the process we add some sugar to the recipe. This will help the yeast do its thing quicker. Change the ingredients to make the quick version to:

  • 1 1/3 cups warm water, between 105 to 110 degrees F (measure with a cooking thermometer)
  • One packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast*
  • 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour**
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or honey

Method

As in the longer version, combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then add in the warm water. Stir to form an even dough, which will be loose.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap, and let it rest for at least an hour. Once it has doubled in size – you’ll know it’s ready. Bake as above.

Other bread recipes to try:

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8 Comments

  1. Can you use a cloche to make any of these breads, including the no knead. If making the no knead in a dutch oven, do you have to heat the cloche first also?

  2. Yes, sure you can use one. If your manufacturer states that you can preheat it then I would at least preheat the base (if yours comes with one), or use a preheated baking stone underneath.

  3. Hi, I am new to bread making.

    I want to make “whole wheat”, “no-knead” bread. I tried making regular bread before, but it was dense.

    I also only have non-stick pan / big cooker whistle removed setup.

    Can you tell me tips to make this type of bread possible, do I need to change the ingredient quantities or time-frame? I would really appreciate it!

  4. Hi Sarah, don’t make a 100% whole wheat loaf to start with. Swap a cup (100 grams) of white flour for whole wheat in this recipe and add an extra tablespoon of water. You can gradually switch more ww for white flour as you get more confident. Are you using the pan in the oven like a Dutch oven?

  5. Interesting, I’ve not used one of these for bread. Let me know how you get on!

  6. In one of your posts you mentioned, keeping dough in refrigerator for making it less dense. Where I live, room temperature is kinda hotter.

    How would one go about doing that with this one?

  7. Hi Gil! I’d put it in the fridge for 4-6 hours and only bulk ferment for ~ 8 hours for this recipe. The final rise time might need to be extended as the dough will be colder at the start. It’s not essential to use the fridge to make bread less dense, it just awards more time for the gluten structure to strengthen. You could knead the dough for 5 minutes longer to achieve similar results.

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