The Easiest No Knead Bread Recipe

Learn how to make the easiest no knead artisan bread with just 4 ingredients! Perfect for beginners and seasoned bread bakers alike, this recipe takes just a few minutes to prep, no dutch oven or special tools and 2 hours to rise. 

The Easiest No Knead Bread Recipe | Modern Homestead Mama

If you’ve always been fascinated with the idea of baking your own bread at home, but you’ve been too intimidated to start, this is an excellent bread recipe for beginners.

I’ve shared this recipe with countless people in person, and hundreds over on Instagram. It’s my favorite thing to share with people who are interested in baking bread for the first time!

And it’s not just because it’s practically guaranteed to get you hooked on baking homemade bread. It’s because…

No dutch oven? No problem! You don’t need any fancy tools to make this no knead bread!

If you have a baking sheet, you’re set! Parchment paper, even better. Run to your store and grab some instant dried yeast and bread flour on the baking aisle, and you’re set!

This recipe holds a special place in my heart

As a matter of fact, this was the very first recipe I ever made, and it came out delicious, and gave me the confidence boost I needed to pursue bread making. I’ve made some slight adjustments over time, but it’s tried and true.

I was browsing Youtube one night when Big Family Homestead‘s video popped up. Honest to God, I had never even heard of bread flour at that point in time. I watched her make a loaf of no knead bread in under 3 hours and was absolutely amazed that it could really be that easy!

So, before we get into the recipe, I want to give a big shout out to Big Family Homestead. This recipe is almost exactly like hers. There are a few things I do differently, but there are also some tips she shared that I carry with me to this day that I found super helpful. I enjoy passing them along to others, as well as directing people to their Youtube channel. I’ve since found that many no knead bread recipes are more or less the same, but the tips shared on their video have stuck with me.

Thank you Big Family Homestead, for giving me the courage to jump into bread making! 

So let’s talk about this bread recipe for a minute…

I have made this recipe dozens of times, and it never gets old. I make it about once a week, and it gets eaten within a day or two. I dove head first into bread baking, from artisan sourdough boules to fluffy sandwich bread and (my son’s personal favorite), New York Style bagels.

Despite being up to our ears in a variety of different loaves every week, I still make this simple no knead bread all the time. I call it our “family bread.” I’ve made it at every family member’s house we’ve visited this year, because it’s so easy and you don’t need any special tools. I just pack a little yeast and some bread flour and that’s it! 

The biggest takeaway from their video for me, was the tip to do everything in a tall container with a loose fitting lid. 

Use a Tall Tupperware Container for This Recipe

Now look, you don’t have to do this, but I promise it’s worth it! After it rises, you can bake a loaf for that day and stick the rest of the dough in the fridge for later. These loaves last a few days without molding or going stale as long as it’s stored properly, but who doesn’t love a freshly baked loaf? Especially when everything is ready for you to pull out and immediately bake!

This is the easiest no knead bread recipe around, I promise! 

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No Knead Artisan Loaf of Fresh Homemade Bread

2-Hour No Knead Bread Recipe

Are you ready to make your very own no knead bread in just 2 hours using only 4 ingredients?

Proceed with caution. Once you make your own artisan bread, you’re going to fall in love and never look back.

Ingredients and Materials

  • Large container with a loose fitting lid (you can use anything that allows room for the dough to rise, though)
  • 2 tbsp dry active yeast
  • 1.5 tbsp salt
  • 4 cups warm water
  • 8 cups of bread flour
  • Optional: 1 egg for an egg wash

How to make No Knead Bread

Step 1: Gather your ingredients.

2 hour no knead bread ingredients: salt, dry active yeast, large container with a lid, and bread flour

Step 2: Add salt to your container or mixing bowl.

Adding salt to the container for no knead bread

Step 3: Add yeast to your container or mixing bowl.

Adding yeast to the container for no knead bread

Step 4: Add warm water to your mixing bowl, and stir to melt the salt a little.

Adding water to the container for no knead bread

You can let it sit for a few minutes to bloom if you want, but it’s not necessary. Use water that’s warm, but not too hot to touch. High heat kills yeast, and cold water makes it take longer to rise. I usually stick to 90-100°F just to be safe.

Step 5: Add flour to container or mixing bowl.

Adding bread flour to container for no knead bread dough

Step 6: Using your hands or a spatula (I prefer using my hands, it’s much quicker and easier), mix until fully incorporated.

No knead bread dough after being mixed

Your dough should be sticky and a little shaggy, but fully mixed.

Sticky and wet bread dough

Step 7: Put a loose fitting lid, damp towel, or some sort of cover on your container and allow to rise for about an hour and a half to two hours.

Letting no knead bread dough ferment on the counter for 2 hours

Your dough should have doubled in size (if not more) by this time!

No knead bread dough after it has risen for 2 hours at room temperature

Step 8: Add some flour to the top and coat your hands as well.

Add flour to the top of the dough so it doesn't stick to you as you knock it down

Step 9: Knock the dough down to release the gas bubbles. Pull around the edges and let it fall.

Use your had to knock the dough down

Use your had to knock the dough down

Step 10: Using floured hands, pull out a chunk of dough and shape into a boule by pulling the top down onto itself. 

Artisan no knead bread boule

You can also do this on the counter using a bench scraper, but I’ve never found that to be necessary. It will be wet and sticky, but don’t panic! Just add some more flour to your hands and keep shaping.

Step 11: Place boule on a parchment-lined baking sheet and score.

Scoring the artisan no knead bread boule

You don’t have to score your bread, and these loaves usually end up doing whatever they want, regardless of how your score them, but to be fair, I’m not the world’s best scorer. 

No knead artisan bread boule after it's been scored

Step 12: Brush the top of the loaf with egg wash.

Egg wash and brush for no knead bread

Brushing artisan no knead bread boule with egg wash

From here you can add some sesame seeds to the top, or really anything else you might like! Or leave it plain. It’s delicious as is.

Alternatively, you can bake your no-knead bread in a loaf pan. Simply grease the loaf pan, shape the dough, and add it to the pan.

Greased loaf pan

You can score this as well, but it’s not necessary. Add some egg wash and cook it the same as you would the boule!

No knead bread in loaf pan for shaped bread loaf

Step 13: Bake at 425°F for 20-25 minutes. 

Artisan No Knead Bread with Sesame Seeds

And just like that, you’ve made a beautiful loaf of artisan bread without kneading, without sugar, and without waiting hours upon hours for the dough to rise! Amazing.

There’s nothing like a warm slice of freshly baked bread with a schmear of my homemade cultured butter. You’ve got to try it!

You can bake all of this dough off at once if you like, or you can stick it in the fridge for later use! It should last around 3 days in there, covered. You can pull it out and immediately bake another loaf, or let it come back up to room temp for an extra proofing. I usually just bake it straight out of the fridge, as crazy as it sounds. This easy dough is truly magical.

No Knead Bread with No Sugar

This usually makes about 3-4 loaves for me, though it will depend on how big you’re making your boules.

Recipe Recap

Ingredients and Materials:

  • 2 tbsp dry active yeast
  • 1.5 tbsp salt
  • 4 cups warm water
  • 8 cups of bread flour
  • Optional: 1 egg for an egg wash

Step 1: Add salt, yeast, and water to a large container or mixing bowl and stir.

Step 2: Add flour to container and mix until incorporated.

Step 3: Cover and let rise for 1.5-2 hours at room temperature.

Step 4: Using floured hands, knock the dough down.

Step 5: Grab a chunk of dough and shape into a boule. Place it on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, or drop it in a greased loaf pan. It’s a very sticky dough, don’t be put off by that. Just keep your hands nice and floured.

Step 6: Score your bread with a lame or a sharp knife if you like. It’s not necessary. (This is the lame I have)

Step 7: Brush the top of the loaf with egg wash. Top with sesame seeds if you want a special twist.

Step 8: Bake at 425°F for 20-25 minutes.

Step 9: Pull out and place loaves on a cooling rack so the bottoms don’t get moist.


No Knead Bread Loaves

Now Big Family Homestead‘s recipe included adding a pan of water to the bottom rack of the stove, but I’ve just never found it necessary. Doing this creates a steamy environment for the bread, giving it a fluffy inside, and crispy, crunchy crust. 

My loaves have always come out perfect without this step, but you may find it kicks things up a notch for you!

Have you made no-knead bread before? Do you have any tips for beginners? Let us know in the comments below!

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The Easiest No Knead Bread Recipe | Modern Homestead Mama

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