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easy bread on a breadboard

Homemade Artisan Bread

An easy recipe for delicious homemade bread using only four ingredients and no kneading.

Course Side Dish


  • 3 cups lukewarm water (100° F or below)
  • 1 TB granulated yeast
  • 1.5 TB kosher salt
  • 6.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • cormeal or parchment paper, for the pizza peel


  1. Put the water in a large (about 6 qt) plastic storage bucket with a lid. The water should feel just a bit warmer than body temperature.

  2. Add the yeast and salt to the water and stir. Don't worry about getting all of it to dissolve.

  3. Add all of the flour, cup by cup, without stirring in between. Use a scoop and sweep method of measuring the flour instead of pressing the flour down, which compresses it and will throw off the measurement.

  4. Mix with a wooden spoon. If it gets difficult, you can also mix it with wet hands. Don't knead! The dough should just be uniformly moist, with no dry patches. It should be loose and should conform to the shape of the container. (You can also mix it with a heavy-duty stand mixer with a paddle or with a Danish dough whisk.)

  5. Place the lid on the top of the container, but leave it cracked open. Allow dough to rise at room temperature until it begins to flatten or collapse (about 2 hours). Then refrigerate and use within 14 days.

  6. You can bake the bread right after the rising process or save it for another day.

    To bake, sprinkle a pizza peel with cornmeal or add a piece of high-heat parchment paper. Dust the surface of the dough with flour and pull off a piece about the size of a large grapefruit.

  7. Cloak the dough by gently stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball as you go. The bottom of the loaf will not be smooth, but will flatten as it bakes. The cloaking should take about 30 seconds - don't overwork the dough.

  8. Place it on the prepared pizza peel and let it rest for about 40 minutes. I like to put the dough toward the edge of the peel to make it easier to slide off.

  9. Pre-heat a baking stone in the center of the oven at 450° for about 20-30 minutes. Place a metal (never use glass because it could shatter) broiling pan on the oven rack that is below the rack the pizza stone is on.

  10. When the bread has rested, sprinkle the top with flour and use a serrated knife to slash a couple of lines (1/2 inch deep cross lines or tic-tac-toe lines). Slide the dough from the pizza peel to the hot baking stone in the oven. Just jiggle it a bit and then pull back sharply.

  11. Quickly pour 1 cup of very hot water from the tap into the broiler tray and close the oven to trap the steam.

  12. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the crust is richly browned. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack for best texture and slicing.

  13. Store the remaining dough in the refrigerator and use over the next 14 days. The dough becomes more flavorful as it is stored for subsequent days.