No Knead Bread: What Is It?

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No knead bread is what happens when innovators are short on time and hungry for fresh, home-made bread.

This recipe is so easy! Slap the ingredients together in literal minutes, leave it overnight, and pop it in the oven the next day. Yes, it is that simple.

no knead bread recipe

People can even have the dough mixed and ready before they leave for work in the morning. Bake it after work and have fresh, warm bread with dinner.

Delicious! But first…

What is No Knead Bread?

Essentially, no knead bread is a recipe where one does not have to work, beat, or roll the dough for gluten to form – the stuff that gives bread its texture and helps it rise.

All bakers have to do is make sure that the ingredients are mixed well and that the bowl is sealed tight.

The beauty of this bread is, instead of kneading (and making a huge mess!), the dough is given an extra-long prove.

Taste and texture wise, no knead bread has a light, flaky crust and a fluffy interior. It is perfect for sandwiches, dipping in soup, or making a cob loaf with, and large enough for the whole family to enjoy.

Given how easy no knead bread is, you can make it an introductory recipe for kids to try too since it makes far less mess than other types of bread dough, so mess-ups won’t be wasteful.

No Knead Bread Recipes

Lots of bakers, professional and hobbyist, have put their own twists on this recipe. Anyone can!

Just be aware, if adding something like fruit, nuts, or chocolate chips to the dough, it may not rise as high as it could.

Follow the no knead bread recipes below to get a feel for how it works and then start experimenting.

The Original

No knead bread all started with a New York baker named Jim Lahey. His version of the recipe can be considered the basic version, and there is nothing wrong with going back to the basics.

There isn’t a speedy no knead bread recipe, as the prove will eat up a fair bit of time, but actually making the dough is super fast and can be done with little fuss.

no knead bread


  • 400 grams bread flour
  • 8 grams salt
  • 1 gram yeast
  • 300 grams water


Throw it all in a large bowl, mix well, and cover with cling-wrap securely. Tuck the bowl somewhere safe and warm, but preferably away from direct sunlight.

Leave the dough to prove for 12 to 18 hours. (Really be sure that the seal is air-tight, as the prove will suffer if air can get in or out.)

Now, a good prove will double the size of the dough and little bubbles will be visible on the surface. Once the dough looks like this, it is time to shape!

Flour the countertop, drop the dough onto it, and gently fold the dough a few times. Shaping it is easy, and the most common style for no knead bread is a circle.

Then, cover it with a damp hand towel and let it prove for another hour or two. Once the second prove is done, preheat the oven to 446 °F and drop the dough into a pre-heated pot.

Pop the lid on the pot and let it bake for 30 minutes. Bake again, with the lid removed, for another 15 to 30 minutes depending on how dark a crust is desired.

After that, it’s done!

no knead bread

Cheddar and Jalapeno No Knead Bread

This fun and tasty variation on artisan no knead bread that can be made without fuss, and is great for a park picnic!

Using the recipe above, make the dough and let it rise overnight or over the day. Once done, prepare the extra ingredients.

The amount of cheese and jalapeno used will depend on personal taste, but one small (diced and seeded) jalapeno and four (4) ounces of diced cheddar is a good place to start.

Prep the surface you will be kneading the dough on (yes, no knead bread does require a bit of kneading when adding extra flavors in), and pop the dough onto it.

Drop the cheese and jalapeno in the center and fold the dough over itself. Keep gently folding until the add-ins are evenly distributed, shape the loaf how you want, and let it prove again for a good hour or so.

Pop it in the oven at the same temperature and time in the above recipe, but without the pot. Place the tray dead center in the oven, and let it bake.

For extra pizazz, cut three light, diagonal slashes over the top before you chuck it in the oven. This will give the loaf a professional look, and some extra crunchy bits!

This is just one delicious variation! Try out some interesting flavors, like chorizo and cheddar, or olive and feta.

The video below shows a cinnamon raisin variation.

No knead bread is so easy, and there are few limits on what flavors one can incorporate.

Do you have any tips for making no knead bread?

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