Homemade French Bread for Beginners Recipe

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This is an easy, no-knead recipe for French bread that requires some mixing and 2 days refrigeration (cold fermentation) before baking. Plan in advance to make this bread, which is so much tastier than bread bought at the grocery store.

Refrigeration allows the bread to produce alcohol (it bakes off) and other yeast by-products that add flavor.

If you have never made baguettes before, look on Youtube or some place else for instructions, as it's better to see how it's done. If you don't want to do that, make rolls.


medium mixing bowl
plastic wrap
mixing spoon
measuring cup/spoons
parchment paper
cornmeal (optional)
baking sheet
spray water bottle
cookie rack

Prep time:
Servings: 6-8


Cost per serving $0.03 view details


  1. Combine water and yeast, and 1/2 tsp. oil.
  2. Add flour and salt.
  3. Mix the ingredients until well-combined. (I use a spatula and go beneath the dough and turn it over the top, turning the bowl as I go.)
  4. This dough should be sticky to the touch. Do not add more flour. If not sticky, add a tbs. of water, mix, add more if necessary. You may feel you'll no be able to handle the dough later, but it will change in the fridge.
  5. Let the dough rise (in a warm place) until doubled.
  6. Cover with plastic, leaving a little breathing room, and refrigerate for 2-3 days.
  7. When ready to bake, remove the dough from the fridge. Using floured hands, divide and shape the dough as desired.
  8. Sprinkle cornmeal or flour on the parchment paper and transfer the dough pieces. (I don't have a baguette proofing pan, and just rig up something similar using a 11x 13 pan, using parchment paper folds to divide the baguettes.)
  9. Let rise, covered, for one hour.
  10. Heat the oven to 450 degrees.
  11. When the oven is hot, sift flour over the tops of the loaves and use the scissors to cut 3 diagonal slits on top of each baguette, about 1/2 " deep.
  12. Spray the baguettes with water and place in the oven. Spray again after 3 minutes, then 6 minutes, being careful to not let heat escape the oven door.
  13. Turn the baguettes after 12 minutes and remove when golden brown.
  14. Let cool on cookie rack for an hour or two.
  15. To freeze, let baguettes cool completely, wrap in plastic and freeze up to 2 weeks.
  16. Makes 2 medium baguettes or 12 rolls.


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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 60g
Recipe makes 6 servings
Calories 1  
Calories from Fat 0 0%
Total Fat 0.02g 0%
Saturated Fat 0.0g 0%
Trans Fat 0.0g  
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 390mg 16%
Potassium 7mg 0%
Total Carbs 0.13g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0.1g 0%
Sugars 0.0g 0%
Protein 0.13g 0%
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  • ShaleeDP
    January 16, 2014
    Oh I like French bread. this is a good recipe to try with on my own.

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