Here are some of my favorite No-Knead bread recipes. Each is distinctly different from the others, touching on some of what’s possible with this simple and hugely time saving bread baking method.

Menu of No Knead Videos:
Cranberry-Pecan Seeded Sour
Parmesan-Olive Steel Cut Oats


(Note: If you’re brand new to no knead bread baking, I strongly encourage you to give the basic no knead recipe a try first before moving into the variations.)

In each of the videos you will see I’m using sourdough starter as the leavening agent. The use of sourdough starter is usually my preference in baking but as the written instructions indicate, you can just as easily substitute instant yeast for the starter by mixing 1/4 teaspoon of instant yeast in with the dry ingredients and leaving out the sourdough starter entirely. It’s that simple. I don’t want to see anyone deprived of the luxury of this bread experience if instant yeast is your preference for leavening.

As always, feel free to play with different flour mixes and ingredients to come up with your ultimate bread masterpiece.

Please leave your comments, questions and experiences at the bottom of the page.

Couldn’t resist adding this email from my new best friend ;). It includes some great no knead recipe variation tips…

“Hi Eric,

Ever since I found your website a couple years ago, we have not bought store bread (except for burger buns and pitas). Baking bread is a complete joy for me: making it is fun, seeing the results is amazing and the reactions I get from those I share it with are gratifying. Our “daily bread” is the regular sourdough (but I add 1 tsp.poppy seeds). The olive parmesan loaf is a special treat for when we have guests (my siblings love this one especially – we’re of Greek descent =)) – but I usually add a head of mashed roasted garlic to it.

I have even created my own sourdough KNM variation that I thought I’d share with you. Feel free to post it, if you’d like. It’s the basic NKM sourdough with 1/4c. chopped, pickled jalepenos and about 5 oz. shredded cheddar cheese mixed in. I was selling them to a neighbor for awhile, but then she started a weight-loss program that forbid bread (scary, huh?).

I currently take care of my elderly mother full-time, but all this bread-baking has led me to seriously consider baking as a career. I fondly imagine my own little bakery someday.

You have changed my life, Eric. Bet you don’t hear that everyday, but it’s true. Thank you.

– Elise Davies


Cranberry Pecan

Cranberry-Pecan Extraordinaire (makes 1 loaf)

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz.) whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups (13 oz.) all purpose or bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries
1/2 cup pecan pieces
1 1/2 cups purified water
1/4  cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

  • Combine the flours and salt
  • Mix the starter into the water until mostly dissolved
  • Mix the water/starter solution into the dry ingredients
  • Mix in the pecans and craisins
  • Cover bowl with plastic at let sit at room temperature for 18 hours
  • After 18 hours turn dough onto well floured surface and gently flatten enough to fold dough back onto itself a couple times to form a roundish blob. Note: This folding stage can be accomplished within the bowl, speeding up the process even further and leaving less of a cleanup.
  • Cover blob with plastic and let rest 15 minutes. During this rest period, coat a proofing basket or towel lined bowl with bran flakes.
  • Gently and quickly shape blob into an approximate ball and place in proofing basket or bowl.
  • Cover with a towel and let rise for 1-2 hours depending on room temperature.
  • As gently as possible, flip the dough into a Dutch oven or ceramic (e.g. La Cloche) baker preheated to 500F degrees and bake covered for 30 minutes. Remove cover and bake an additional 15 minutes at 450 degrees. See Great No-Knead Baking Techniques for more tips.
  • Allow bread to cool completely before slicing and eating. Warning: this most difficult step requires superhuman discipline and restraint.

You may have to adjust the baking times and temperatures to adapt to the various weights and materials of different baking containers.

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Seeded Sour

Seeded Sour (makes 1 loaf)

This recipe holds a solid spot on my “all time favorites” list. It is adapted from the George’s Seeded Sour recipe in Nancy Silverton’s Breads from the La Brea Bakery book.

1/4 cup (1 oz) rye flour
1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz) whole wheat flour
2 1/2 cups (13 oz) all purpose or bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
3 1/2 tsp. quinoa
3 1/2 tsp. millet
2 Tbs. amaranth
1/2 Tbs. poppy seeds

1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast
2 Tbs. yogurt

Seed Topping Ingredients:

1 Tbs. amaranth
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 1/2 Tbs poppy seeds
2 Tbs. anise seeds
1 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds

Combine all the dry ingredients (except the topping ingredients) and then add to that the combined wet ingredients.
The rest of the baking steps are the same as those listed above for the Cranberry Pecan bread.

As shown in the video, I coat the proofing basket with the combined topping ingredients so they stick to the dough during the final rise.

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Parmesan Olive

Parmesan-Olive (makes 1 large loaf)

This recipe makes one amazing loaf of bread. It’s great for special occasions, and considering the price of ingredients, you may want to reserve it for special occasions. Use fresh parmesan cheese and it’s likely you will not find this loaf’s equivalent in any bakery. They would have to charge too much!

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz.) whole wheat flour
2 2/3 cups (13 1/2 oz.) bread flour
1 tsp. salt
7 oz. grated fresh parmesan cheese
2/3 cup pitted kalamata olives (cut in half lengthwise)
1 3/4 cup purified water
1/4 cup sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

Follow the same steps as those listed above for the Cranberry Pecan recipe. Combine the dry ingredients (including the cheese) then add to that the combined wet ingredients and then stir in the olives. The ingredient measurements are a little different than usual as the cheese is salty to start with and the dry mix takes more water than usual.

Here’s a video from Breadtopia visitor, Archer Yates… Nice!

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Steel Cut Oats

Steel Cut Oats (makes 1 loaf)

It’s amazing what the addition of a mere half cup of steel cut oats can do to enhance and vary the quality of a basic loaf of no knead bread. During the long fermentation period, the grains soften and swell to give the bread a wholesome and satisfying flavor and texture.

Simple enough to whip together in a heartbeat and interesting enough to become a regular in your no knead rotation.

3/4 cup (3 oz.) whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (3 oz.) steel cut oats
2 1/4 cups (10 oz.) bread flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup firm sourdough starter or 1/4 tsp. instant yeast

Pictured here: Awesome steel cut oats no knead by Breadtopia reader Marianne Preston
Marianne's Steel Cut Oats NK
Another Breadtopia reader, Allan Castine, offered this…

In my last e-mail to you, I mentioned that I had made your steel cut oats bread recipe with mostly excellent results.  My only concern, as I told you, was that the bread was a bit bland for my particular taste.

I made the recipe again yesterday with a couple of alterations:

I added an extra 1/2 teaspoon of salt and, following a suggestion from a friend of mine, I lightly toasted the oats in a dry saucepan over medium heat before adding them to the flour mixture.

The results were great. The bread was very tasty, i.e., not bland.


And here’s a great rendition of this recipe from Eric Rochow who runs the website for DIY living. Check it out…

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No Knead Bread Variations

Comments from our Forum

Leave a comment ->
  1. melanieis says:

    The longer-ferment, 2 day in fridge, 2TBs of starter, makes an awesome loaf of sourdough. The bread of my dreams is that longer-ferment sourdough with cranberries and walnuts, but I thought probably I shouldn't leave cranberries and walnuts in a moist dough in the fridge for two days, so instead I covered the flattened oblong after the first long rise and then when I folded it together, the stuffs was folded in. I've done this three times now and it's extremely successful. The other day I tried to actually mix in the cranberries and nuts and see what happens to them in the fridge for two days - I think I'm not going to bake that. So now I want to bake that parmesan olive bread. I'm wondering if I should do the fold-in-after-rise method? Or can those things withstand two days in the fridge? I don't want to lose the cheese-everywhere splendor of the bread. Seems like a more expensive and annoying experiment to do it the wrong way.

  2. Eric says:

    I don't think anything would be worse off by sitting in the fridge that long. The only thing of note that I've found is that minimal handling of the dough after the olives are folded in keep them from getting too mashed up.

  3. GojiB says:

    I had the Seeded Sourdough and that was quite something... i did wonder as to how the yogurt fits into the recipe, i just blindly followed it and it was amazing, i am however not sure if this is something i should strictly only restrict to the seeded bread or i can try it for a regular sourdough.

  4. Eric says:

    Go for it. No reason not to try it in other recipes given your success with the seeded sourdough recipe.

Earlier Comments

572 thoughts on “No Knead Bread Variations

  1. PJ3

    Angela… Why can’t you use the Rubbermaid bowls for the first rise?? Is there that much difference in the bowls??

  2. Angela Spaccarelli

    Here are 12 loaves ready to go to a party.


  3. Angela Spaccarelli

    I use the same Rubbermaid bowls for my second rising as you do, I got mine in Walmart, they are the perfect size. I was making 22 loaves a week, not all at the same time, so I invested in the commercial 6 qt. bread rising buckets for the first rise. I was baking bread for a restaurant and a deli. I stopped baking for the restaurant because it consumed too much of my time and was not cost effective, I am baking from home and it was difficult. I still bake 4 loaves a week for the local Italian deli and whatever else we need at home. I am interested in hearing your results with the new pots when you get to use them.

    As wonderful as my Cuisinart mixer is, I never mix more than one batch at a time. I don’t know why. I guess because I need the size consistency in order to sell them, which I could achieve by weighing each dough ball! Some customers just don’t understand about Artisan rustic looking loaves and expect them all to be identical in size and shape. I also make so many different flavor variations that I cannot mix them together.

  4. Hi All,
    I haven’t been posting for some time as we are super busy with work. But, in the meantime, my work involves making bread almost everyday, depending on the number of Guests I am feeding. Yay!
    Question: Does anyone use a 20 qt. Hobart commercial mixer? A regular return Guest gave me one. (how cool is that?) It has a giant whisk, (I call it the bird cage) and the paddle. I’m hoping to find a dough hook, but should I? It would make life a bit easier when I’m mixing up enough dough to make several loaves. But I wonder about how well it will work… Any help is greatly appreciated.
    Have a great day & take care,

  5. PJ3

    does anyone on this forum have a Bosch or am I the only one??

  6. Mitch

    For the Bosch Owners,

    I just read these comments from two reviewers on Amazon’s website who love the machine but had this to say about cleanup:

    1 – Cleanup is not fun, not fun at all. I did not like the design of the bowl in this aspect. There are plenty of crooks and crevices that dough gets in that take some scrubbing to get out. Also, the top/center of the bowl serves as the “gears” for some of your accessories, but when not using them, they catch quite a bit of food in them, and it is difficult to clean.”

    2 – I had a kitchen aid before I bought the bosch. While it mixes dough really good, cleaning up is really not fun. With the kitchen aid, I had only the stainless steel bowl, and 1 attachment to clean. However, with the bosch, I have to wash the plastic splash shield, all those little paddle, and the bowl, the gear under the bowl…”

    Any comments?


  7. PJ3

    Sorry… from the video that I saw… it looked very small… I was so wrong
    here is info that I copied from
    the bowl is even larger than the Bosch… 8 qt against 6.5 qt
    The DXL
    The large 8 quart stainless steel bowl of the Magic Mill holds up to 28 cups of flour (7 lbs.), to make approximately 15 lbs. of bread dough (7-10 loaves). The efficient, high-torque 600 watt motor runs smoothly and quietly; coupled with an advanced transmission design, it providing ample power to mix and knead even the largest batch of heavy bread dough without straining. The Magic Mill was given its nickname, “The Workhorse Mixer” not by its manufacturer Electrolux, but by users who praise this powerful kitchen helper that’s so enjoyable to use.
    The Bosch
    Polypropylene 6.5 Qt. bowl holds up to 15 pounds of dough That’s enough to make up to nine loaves of bread, in one batch! The new Bosch Plus features an 800 watt motor… PS (I don’t think I could get 9 loaves… I fill mine to capacity and only get 6 loaves)

  8. Russ


    Just a quick correction – the DLX can easily handle up to 8 loaves at a time. I know you’re perfectly happy with your Bosch, I just don’t want anyone who might be considering a DLX to be misinformed.


  9. Mitch


    As I understand it, the older KitchenAid machines were manufactured by Hobart, and they were very well made and long lasting. It wasn’t until Hobart sold off the brand that the quality began to suffer.


  10. April


    Wow, I wasn’t aware that Kitchen Aid is now producing super high end mixers as per their website. I have the Heavy Duty 5 qt and you can still score one for a few bucks over $200 (just googled it). Still roughly half the price. I think I got mine at Macy’s but they are now carrying the more expensive models. I hope mine holds out a good while longer!

  11. Mitch

    Hi April,

    I cannot believe that I’m suddenly an active participant here.

    The KitchenAid Pro 600 lists for $500 and sells at most places (such as Bed Bath & beyond) for $400. Of course if you have the 20% off coupon, which they issue all the time, that drops the price to $320, which is not that much less than the Bosch machine at $400. And, you may have to pay tax on that KitchenAid depending where you live, but I don’t think they collect tax on that Bosch link, so the difference is even less.

    Of course as soon as one starts talking about a “better” machine than the KitchenAid, Electolux owners swear by the Electrolux, Bosch owner swear by the Bosch, and Cuisinart owners swear by the Cuisinart, etc. I have read comments from Electroluux owners who say that Customer Support on the Electrolux is horrendous (such as non-existent). But that’s another story.

    I think I read on either the Bosch site or the Electolux site that the machine kneads the dough so thoroughly that it needs virtually no fermentation time. Unfortunately, it’s the extended fermentation that gives bread its artisan flavor, which distinguishes it from commercial bread that essentially comes out of the mixer and into the loaf pan and out of the oven, all within about an hour. If I wanted a bread that came out of the mixer and out of the oven in a flash, I wouldn’t bother baking my own bread and I’d just buy it in the supermarket. So it seems strange that the manufacturer of a machine designed to mix a fairly large batch of dough at home would tout its ability to knead the dough so extensively as to essentially eliminate the need for a decent fermentation. Oh well.

    Angel, it’s interesting that you solved the problem of the dough climbing up the hook by adding more flour. Here is the quote from a kind person on that I mentioned earlier:

    “Thought I’d mention that my experience with the KA mixer is that the dough only climbs over the collar of the C-hook in one of two circumstances: 1) I’m exceeding the recommended amount of dough for my model by a significant amount, or 2) I haven’t got the hydration right either for the bread or the machine.

    “Re: #2 and contrary to advice in my KA manual, I usually have to add a little water — not flour. When I hear the slap slap of the dough against the sides of the bowl, I know I’ve got the hydration right. Sometimes all it takes is a few drops. ”

    My dough doesn’t necessarily climb OVER the collar but it sure climbs up to it. If I let it keep going it probably would go over the collar. I had written to KitchenAid about the problem and their representative claimed that even when the dough is all on the hook and just goes round and round, it is still kneading. Somehow, when the dough is clinging to the hook and just going round and round I don’t see that it’s kneading; to me it’s just going round and round and I can’t accept the fact that it’s doing anything other than that. Maybe I’m wrong. 🙂

    I suspect that these comments will elicit some response. 🙂


  12. PJ3

    Angle… I have read nothing but rav reviews on these pans… but not for the purpose of baking bread 🙂 they are very similar to the All Clad… I will be cutting off the handles to nubs so 4 will fit into the oven (ouch)… I for sure will let you know my results (they won’t be here until the 23 Sept)

    Shipping is free… however they are shipped to the local Walmart to be pickup up
    As far as mixers go… to each there own… the Kitchen Aid or the Electrolux DLX would NOT make 6 loaves of bread and that’s what I make the most… I make 6 loaves a week and give 5 of them away 🙂 nothing is more fun than giving bread away 🙂
    Angle… FYI… I am using the Rubbermaid “Take-A-Longs” 3.25 qt (even comes with a lid) as a proofing basket for the KN bread… I butter the sides so sesame seed will stick to the sides… works GREAT for me… I use it for the initial 12 hr rise and the 2 hr proof…
    Angle… How many KN loaves of bread are you making a week?? Are you selling them?

  13. Angela Spaccarelli

    Thank you PJ3 for the kind words. I love to see people succeed and also to share my knowledge, whatever it might be, because it can be frustrating when you have nowhere to turn for answers. Breadtopia is a wealth of knowledge, it’s like teamwork! We can help one another. Those pots sound good, went to the Walmart website and saw them. Do you think the bottoms of the pots might be thin? I didn’t see them in person, only the picture on the internet. I would be interested to hear how they work for the bread, that would be a lot lesser weight load on my oven rack being that I bake 4 at a time, my oven would thank me for that. I see that if you order from the internet, the shipping is free, that saves a trip to Walmart, I always say I’d rather get a root canal than buck the Walmart traffic!

    A note on the mixer, my recent purchase is the Cuisinart 7.0 quart- 1000 watt motor, model SM-70BC ( I did the research and found the Cuisinart to have the strongest motor and the largest capacity mixing bowl. I love this mixer, however, it is quite large for smaller jobs, I did call Cuisinart and they said that I could also use the 5.5 qt. bowl with this model. I use speed 3 for the bread dough and mix for 2 minutes. I mixed some bread dough last week and noticed that the dough was climbing up the hook too, I just added more flour and it came off, I am assuming that the dough was too wet. I only had that problem once. It wasn’t my usual bread recipe, I was trying something different.

    I found a real nice recipe for grissini (bread sticks) for anyone that likes making them, it’s easy and very rewarding. Even if you haven’t ever made them before, this is real fun. Here’s the link:
    I think if you like making bread, you will enjoy this. Of course, I fiddled around with the recipe too, I made some with black olives, and also made some with basil pesto. Enjoy!

  14. April

    Dear PJ3,

    It could be that the kitchen Aid mixer doesn’t cost $400. I nearly popped a gasket when I followed your link! My KA is 16 years old and still going strong, same model as available today.

    Not to say that the Bosch is bad, but if I were to spend that kind of money on a mixer I would also consider the Electrolux DLX recommended by Jeff Varasano.

  15. PJ3

    YIKES… the reviews that Kitchen Aid gets… I have a Bosch Universal Mixer and love it… I generally make wheat bread and I can make 6 – 1.5 lbs loaves at one time… so 4 loaves of KN is no problem, they are about 1 lb loaves. The Kitchen Aid must be good for everything else not sure I’ve never had one… (but have had friend that have had em) I just don’t understand the fascination of that machine… they come in colors?? The Bosch is hands down the best bread making machine on the planet… and by far the best and easiest for everything else too… I bought mine here –

  16. Mitch


    I have a teeny 20″ oven so it wouldn’t do me much good to mix 4 loaves at once, but I am curious as to what make and model mixer you have that allows you to mix 4 loaves at a time. I normally make two loaves at a time. I have a KitchenAid Pro 6 that, according to KitchenAid, is supposed to be able to handle a total of 2 pounds of bread and/or whole wheat flour at once. The dough keeps climbing up the “C” dough hook and is driving me mad. Some suggested (on that perhaps I was making too much dough at once or that the dough was too dry. So, yesterday, I made just a one pound (of flour) loaf and the dough wasn’t all that dry, and guess what? The dough still kept climbing up the dough hook. KitchenAid says that you shouldn’t use the newer model spiral dough hook (which supposedly prevents the dough from climbing the hook) on this model machine but I am so fed up with the dough climbing up the “C” hook that I’m willing to chance it — and if the machine dies in the process, so be it.


  17. PJ3

    Angela… your notes are always a joy to read… they are oozing with kindness… willing to share and not in fear that someone else is going to do better than you… always hoping that someone will do better than they are now… I have just ordered some Tramontina pots from Walmart… they are the Triply stainless steel ones… I have been cooking in an All Clad pot and having huge success… much lighter than the cast iron pots… I did start weighting my floor and that has help me out tons and I did start mixing 4 loaves at a time in the mixer… what a great way to do it, saves a bunch of time… my pots won’t be here for 2 weeks but will let you know how they work out… bless you for all of you kind words

  18. Angela Spaccarelli

    You are correct, experience is the key word here. After many trials, I am now able to tell just be feeling my dough if it has the moisture that I am looking for. I originally learned to mix the dough with the best tools we have been given, “hands” and really got the feel for the texture of the dough. After about 100 loaves, I was confident enough to use my mixer. Every day, every season is different, I think the flour dictates how much moisture we need to add. Sometimes the flour is more compact, or during the summer it does hold moisture, rather than use measuring cups I prefer to weigh. Also if you are like me, which I add every kind of ingredient under the sun to flavor my breads, some additions are more moist too. For instance when I add ingredients like fried onions, or roasted red peppers, I will cut back on the water. When I use dry additives such as sopresata, prosciutto, or salami, the water measurement stays the same. Another result that I discovered is that if I am using salty ingredients such as the dried meats, cheeses, or olives, I notice that the loaves sometimes don’t rise as much, of course then I consider cutting back on some salt. I also know that if I use moist ingredients, the crust doesn’t remain crispy. It is nice and crispy once I take them out of the oven, then after cooling off they soften up some. Cure for that is before serving pop in the oven for a few minutes, and the crust is crispy again (kind of like a biscotti, twice baked!). It’s fun to learn these tips and observations by experimenting and to keep moving on, don’t be disappointed keep trying and with a little adjusting here and there you will do just fine! and ask a lot of questions, between all of us there is a lot of experience here with all kinds of issues. Every loaf is as individual as we are, once you get comfortable with your recipe, the possibilities are endless.

  19. Mitch


    Please feel to “break in” anytime!!! I had tried the original NK bread (using 2/3 King Arthur bread flour and 1/3 King Arthur whole-wheat flour) a few times and it was invariably good each time. This time I again used the 2/3 and 1/3 flours but added 23% (Baker’s percent) of steel cut oats and 3% vital wheat gluten to help the rise given all of those oats. According to my notes, when I was finished mixing the batch (at 6:30 p.m) the room temperature was around 82F. I put the bowl on the windowsill (with the window open). The outdoor temperature was at 78F, predicated to go down to 63F overnight. I stopped fermenting at 12:30 p.m. the next day, which was 18 hours later. I failed to check the dough temperature at that time. After it rested, proofed, baked, and cooled, I tasted a slice and then gave the loaf to my son-in-law, for whom I actually baked it. His follow-up email on it was “Bread is good but not a ton of taste, but still good.” He was apparently happier with it than I was although he was not as enthusiastic about it as he usually is. He then said that dipping it in some salted olive oil boosted it considerably. Of course I judge the results BEFORE the bread is doctored up because to me that’s the true test, but at least he was able to improve the taste to make it better than it originally was. I will watch the dough more carefully next time and let that guide me more so than watching the clock. And I’ll soak the oats for a few hours just to be sure they aren’t too hard to enjoy eating.

    As Robert added above, temperatures as well as times would be helpful to those just starting on this journey.

    Thanks to you all.


  20. robert

    On the recipe texts – ferment, baking temps & times & internal temps would be helpful. The Parmesan/Olive loaf is wonderful. Thank You!

  21. I don’t remember the room temp when I went 16 hours, but like Angela, 12 hours seems very adequate unless the room is quite cold. I just haven’t made the steel cut oats recipe since going with the shorter times. Softening the oats was never a problem with the longer times. When I make it again, I’ll soak in water for at least a few hours first.

  22. Angela Spaccarelli

    Hi Mitch,
    sorry for breaking in…just wanted to give you some of my experiences. I think you are correct about watching the dough more than the actual hours. I have noticed if the dough is really slack and runny it’s been too long or too warm (room temperature). Quite honestly, I stop at 12 hours, that is sufficient, sometimes it may go 13-14 hours but, that’s it for the first rise. I’m not sure about the kind of bread you are making, those are just my experiences with the original NK recipe using white flour only. Hope this input helps.

  23. Mitch

    Hi PJ3,

    Steel cut oats are not like rolled oats that are used to make oatmeal. They are very hard and because of that they take much longer to cook than oatmeal. If they are not either pre-cooked or sufficiently pre-soaked, I don’t know if they would be soft enough to be satisfactory for eating.


    The bowl is covered with plastic wrap so it’s not picking up any moisture from the air. It’s just that the hydration is very high to begin with and after the long fermentation it becomes very, very slack. Perhaps the fact that it gets soooooooooooo slack is an indication that the gluten has broken down and that it has fermented way too long. In your video I believe you say “It’s been about 16 hours” and your dough appears to be somewhat more manageable. Do you recall what the room temperature was during those 16 hours? Once bubbles start to form on the top of the dough would you say that it has fermented enough regardless of the elapsed time?


  24. It’s definitely fine to add more flour (or reduce the water) to get a stiffer dough so it’s not so floppy later. The dough must pull moisture out of the air during proofing, since it can look fine when first mixed up. I’ve always been amazed at the variance of experiences with dough consistency between people following the same exact recipe and weighing out ingredients. But hey, who wants bread baking to be that easy? 😉

  25. PJ3

    I had huge success with watching the dough on the first rise… I let it rise until it just starts to fall… and I really like Eric’s (method) idea of erring on the short side of time for the second rise… I’m gunna try that next time

    My guess is if the steel cut oats are not offensive in texture… why soak them longer… I sometimes like a little texture in my bread

  26. Mitch

    Hi Eric,

    Actually, I didn’t get much, if any, rise in the oven (using a covered terra cotta baker) so it sounds as if the yeast may have been depleted by then.

    I think I will soak the steel cut oats next time or maybe even cook them up to be sure they are soft enough — and I will take into account any water gained or lost in the process.

    On the subject of water, I find that the dough after fermentation is so sloppily wet that it really is very difficult to handle. Would it really be a problem with this no-knead method if the dough was just a little drier, so that it didn’t flop all over the place?



  27. I didn’t think about softening the oats. You’re right about needing time for that. Maybe 12-14 hours wouldn’t be enough. Of course you could soak them in water for a while first. The second proofing doesn’t need to show a lot of rise before you bake as long as the yeast or starter is healthy and hasn’t used up a lot of its available food. I tend to err on the short side for proofing times and count on oven spring to get a nice final rise. It’s easier to get good oven spring with shorter proofing times since the yeast still has a lot of strength left and food to work with.

  28. Mitch

    Hi Eric,

    Thank you for your reply. The previous time when I baked this bread (without the oats and gluten) I did the fold after 16 hours and proofed for about 1-1/2 hours. It went to 18 hours this time because I had no way of knowing if the steel cut oats would be soft enough before that amount of time. Also, the nighttime temperatures were a bit lower, perhaps 70F so I figured I had better go a full 18 hours, but perhaps it was too much. It also proofed for 2 hours because it seemed to need that amount of time to get a decent rise in the basket.

    But with the next loaf I will go for the shorter times you recommend (assuming the same temperatures) and will post my results.

    Do you have any kind of chart suggesting the length of fermentation times for differing room temperatures?


  29. Hi Mitch,

    I don’t think it would have come from the oats but I haven’t added vital wheat gluten so not sure about that. I’d guess it has more to do with the 18 + 2 hour hours. That’s a long time at 75 degrees and would produce more acids which break down the gluten. Maybe try something like 12-14 hours on the long proof and no more than 1 1/2 on the final and see what happens (assuming your room temp is about the same 75 degrees).

    Please comment back here and let us know what you do and what happens.

  30. Mitch

    Vital Wheat Gluten?

    I’ve made the regular no knead bread and have had great success. Yesterday I baked the variation using the steel cut oats and added 3% (13.5g) vital wheat gluten in a recipe that contained 450g flour plus another 104g steel cut oats, so it doesn’t seem to be all that much vital wheat gluten that was added. The loaf came out perfect with large holes, etc., but the bread seems to have a slightly strange taste and after-taste. I have never eaten steel cut oats not have I ever before used vital wheat gluten, so I can’t tell if this taste can be attributed to either of these ingredients. The dough also fermented for a full 18 hours at about 75F and was quite bubbly when I placed it into the banneton where it proofed for another two hours, so I’m not sure I’m not picking up what amounts to a slight sourdough tang, although this has never happened with my prior breads not using these two new ingredients.
    Any comments would be appreciated.
    Thank you.

  31. Gluten free

    Can someone send me a recipe for No knead Gluten free bread.

    Thank you.

  32. JeffB.

    Looks great Angela. That’s what those Dutch Overns are for!

  33. Angela Spaccarelli

    I got an email that the upload for pictures has been fixed. I will try again to post the picture of the 4 Dutch ovens in my oven.


  34. Samuel gaxiola
  35. Michelle

    Correction- sorry that is 1/2 tsp of salt- not 1 tsp.

  36. Michelle

    These loaves are beautiful! I tried making some they came out so- so but the crust too hard and the baking made my home too hot. Since I love sourdough toast in the morning and not wanting to heat up my home in the summer I began to wonder if I could use my bread machine- I know this is taboo (smile). After some failed experiments I then came up with a pretty decent sourdough loaf – that is great for sandwiches and toast. So here is my version of a “non knead method” since the bread machine does the work- enjoy!

    You will need:

    Bread Machine
    1/2 cup of very active starter- I just use mine straight from the fridge(cold) without “feeding” – But I do feed what remains in my crock before putting that back in the fridge
    1 cup of lukewarm water
    3 cups unbleached white flour
    1 TBS sugar
    1 tsp salt
    1 TBS oil

    Add water, sugar, oil, and sourdough starter to bread machine pan and stir until starter is dissolved or almost dissolved. Add all remaining ingredients and set the machine to DOUGH CYCLE. You might want to watch for about 10 minutes to make sure you don’t need to add a bit more water or flour and that it is forming a nice ball.

    Trick for why this works. I set my machine up before going to bed- about 10 pm. The dough cycle which kneads the bread takes about 90 minutes and while I’m sleeping it is rising.

    When I get up at about 6 am I have a fully risen loaf!

    Now the most important step . DO NOT knead or punch down this loaf!!! You will bake from this point. Make sure you then just click the “BAKE” cycle, start, and then and in about an hour you should have a great tasting (non artisan) loaf of sour dough bread that is great for toast or sandwiches.

  37. April

    I, too, have made four loaves at a time and anyone can do it very inexpensively. Measure your oven dimensions with the rack in place and buy terra cotta saucers to fit the width, most likely the 8″ size. I can fit four of these in my oven easily in a zig zag pattern. The best pots to use are the shallow ones used for planting bulbs or azalea. These are shorter than the standard and fit best. Use the pots as the lid and make sure they fit the saucers. I used large washers and stainless steel eye hook to make a handle through the hole. I didn’t want to use any other metal for fear of fuming out or melting at high temps. I was planning to bake for my local farmers market although my plans fell through at the last minute. The system did work well, though.

  38. Angela Spaccarelli

    somehow the oven image didn’t appear, let me try again.

  39. Angela Spaccarelli

    Hello fellow bread enthuisasts,
    I am so happy to see that others share in the joy of baking bread and I am equally as happy to share my experiences and trials with others.
    As far as the pattern is concerned, after the last 2 hour rise, I flour the top of the dough balls then slash the pattern with a razor, then put in the dutch ovens to bake.
    I am truly sorry for omitting the most important ingredient-the yeast! I use the SAF yeast, 1/4 teaspoon. Yes, I just measured the oven, it is the standart 30″, the inside dimension of the oven is 24″ wide by 18″ deep. I got lucky at The Christmas Tree Shop and found the Dutch ovens, the perfect size, they are a “no name brand” but perform beautifully. I fashioned my own handles out of plumbing shut off handles. The pots are heavy and I can see the oven rack crying when I bake the 4 loaves, but heck what’s the oven for? The racks only bend slightly, but once I remove the pots they are fine. I know I shouldn’t do this because my oven isn’t the cleanest right now and the pots look real “used” but I am enclosing a picture of the pots in the oven, it’s haard to believe that I manage to get 4 pots in at one time, here’s the proof. After several uses I gave up scrubbing the pots after each use, it’s only baked on loose flour, I give them a good washing after a few bakings. My husband thinks they look like what they were intended for and the flour is more or less a badge of honor.
    Thank you all sincerely for the beautiful comments, I am happy to share any of my knowledge to help others. I am there too and enjoy reading all the trials and tribulations that we all have.


    Angel, thanks for all the tips but reading your recipe I think the yeast is missing are you using 1- 1/2 Tablespoons?
    And is your oven a standard 30 ” oven? What brand of dutch ovens are u using? Lodge logic? And are the 4 pots on the same rack? Dutch ovens are heavy.

    Thanks again for the info.


  41. Sherry

    Hi Angel, I agree, your beautiful breads are so inspiring! How do you make that cute decorative pattern on them (which I assume is flour or corn meal)? Is it just from the slashing pattern? (and thanks for all the ideas on added ingredients!)

  42. Angela Spaccarelli

    Hi PJ3,
    I’m glad I can try and help you. I use four 4 qt. size pots, they fit just perfect in my oven. I have a real standard GE oven too! I am surprised as well. They are really nice sized loaves. I am so proud of the bread because bread is the one thing that I have been trying for many years to successfully make. I did monkey around with the recipe for 2 months straight making bread every day, to the point where I found myself buying the economy size 50lb. bag of flour. The flour I purchase is from a restaurant supply it’s called, Gold Medal full strength, baker’s enriched bromated flour, however, I do get the same results if I use the 5lb. bag of bread or all-purpose flour from the grocery store. When I incorporate some whole wheat flour, the rise isn’t as high, but it is decent. I do use the SAF yeast.
    As far as the wetness goes, my dough is not wet at all. I’m sure that makes the difference in the crumb, you can actually form the dough into a ball by hand without it sticking sometimes needing a small amount of bench flour. The bread has a small holed crumb but the bread is not dense, it is hollow sounding when you knock on the bottom of the loaf after it is baked. When I make that Ciabatta bread I wrote about that dough cannot be handled, it is WET and it has a very large holy moist crumb.
    I used to let the dough sit for 15 minutes before forming into the balls, but again I was looking to expedite the bread production because I had to make so many loaves, I tried skipping the 15 minute waiting period, and it works. After the initial long rise, I dump the dough out onto a floured surface, fold it over itself as Eric instructs and form into the ball, dust with flour and put in the parchment lined bowl, cover and let rise for 2 hours.
    This is the recipe that works for me: 1 lb. 3 1/4 oz. bread flour, 1 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 1/2 cups water. When I add wet ingredients like the jarred roasted red peppers, I will cut back on the water because the peppers are rather moist and in place of some of the water I will add some of the liquid the peppers are packed in.
    Good luck, I hope this helps.

  43. PJ3

    I forgot to mention that I have some pretty awesome looking bread… I am just not getting the rise that you are……………

  44. PJ3

    Hey again Angela… how the heck are you getting 4 loaves of bread into your oven… those look like pretty big loaves 🙂 I have used the Cooks Illustrated method of making the knb and didn’t get as nice of crumb as I do when I don’t work the bread… are you letting the loaves rest for the 15 min before you put them into the bowls… I am at 4900 feet and I am pushing as much flour into the loaf as I can with a spoon and the dough is still WAY wet after 12 hrs… I am using a high quality bread flour to make the bread… what kind of flour are you using… [email protected]
    Thanks for all your posts… for sure

  45. Angela Spaccarelli

    Hi PJ3,
    Thank you for the compliment! No, I am not a pro, but I am really enjoying the bread making experience. I owe it all to Eric & Breadtopia. I always stick with the original NK bread recipe. I did learn that for me consistency comes with weighing the ingredients versus using measuring cups. I learned to make the bread by mixing the dough by hand and really getting the “feel” for the dough texture. Once I felt comfortable with that I bought myself the most beautiful Cuisinart 7qt. mixer. The mixer has a timer on it and I mix the dough for 2 minutes I also put my special added ingredients in at that time as well. I let it rise for 12 or more hours, after that I form the dough into balls, dust with flour and put in a parchment paper lined bowl and cover, let rise for 2 hours. After 2 hours, I sprinkle the dough ball with flour and slash with a razor blade and transfer the bread with the parchment paper into the cast iron pots and into the oven. I bake at 445 degrees for 45 minutes. I bake 4 loaves at a time because I sell my bread to a local deli so I have to somehow speed my production, that’s also why I use the mixer.
    I am now experimenting with Ciabatta bread, it is so EASY to make and is so rewarding. The recipe that I used is from the website. I have a real easy way to transfer that “wet” dough onto the baking sheet. It’s simple, once the dough has risen for the 18 hours, simply pour the wet dough onto a baking sheet lined with Reynolds release foil (you can sprinkle the baking sheet with flour or corn meal if desired), sprinkle the dough with flour, then cover and let rise for the additional 2 hours, then bake as directed. You never have to handle the dough. If you can’t get the recipe from I can give it to you, give it a try it’s so simple.
    Angel Spaccarelli

  46. PJ3

    Hey Angela Spaccarelli. WOW your bread looks FAB!! I loved you ideas on how to be creative with the bread… like are you a pro baker or what… are you slashing the bread just before it goes into the oven?? and are they all yeast recipes… great rise… I have noticed at my altitude I don’t get as good of rise (aprox 4900 ft) as I did when I was only at 2900 ft. Has anyone else seen this happen??

  47. Dave the Novice

    My wife and I recently went on a cruise that required us to criss-cross the US and then fly to South Amreica. 24 hours in planes and between flights, and the two daytime legs were in the US, where only the first class passengers get food. The rest of us could purchase a really bad sandwich for $10, if we were so inclined. So, instead of doing that, I made 2 batards of the cranberry pecan bread. We took that, some really great sharp white cheddar, some fully cooked sausages (debrecine) cut into bite-sized pieces, and apple wedges. I wasn’t too sure how the cranberry pecan bread would go with the cheese, but it turned out to be a wonderful combination. Thanks for a great recipe.

  48. Angela Spaccarelli

    I just created another bread variety. I used canned San Marzano tomatoes (like plum tomatoes) in sauce. Instead of adding water I hand squeezed 2 of the tomatoes into my measuring cup and poured the tomato sauce in the cup to make up the 1 1/2 cups of water. I also added about 1 tsp. of olive oil, some basil, and fresh cracked black pepper. The bread was excellent, it was like eating a summer tomato salad. I also made a loaf of bread with wine. I used 1 cup of water and 1/2 cup of wine, tasted pretty good. Didn’t have a real “winey” taste either.

  49. Angela Spaccarelli

    oh, two more I forgot to mention: very small fresh grape tomatoes & black pepper, and hot pepper flakes with a few dashes of hot sauce (CAUTION:wear rubber gloves when you mix this one)


  50. Angela Spaccarelli

    you can add sun dried tomatoes, if you get the ones packed in the oil, add about 1 tbs. of the oil, it adds a nice taste. I have added just about everything to the basic no knead recipe: basil pesto sauce, sauted spinach, sun dried tomatoes in oil & plain, eggplant caponata (jarred), shredded cheddar cheese, pepper jack cheese, salami, pepperoni, cappocollo, proscuitto & rosemary, fried onion, fried sweet red peppers, roasted red peppers & some liquid they are in, oil cured black olives & some oil they are packed in, artichokes…and on and on. I have had great results with all the above mentioned. I might even try some fried mushrooms, mmmm. You can use what you have left over, I once added some cubed fried potatoes & onion, that was delicious. Use your imagination, it is a great and very flexible recipe.
    Angel Spaccarelli

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