This easy recipe for No-Knead Buttermilk Bread takes just five minutes of prep and no kneading at all! Bake it in a Dutch oven, in loaf pans, on a baking stone, or simply a baking sheet - it's quite versatile!
6 1/2cupsbread flouror all-purpose flour, see notes below
cornmealfor dusting, if using a baking stone
Make the Dough
In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl, about 6 qt capacity), mix together the water, buttermilk, yeast, salt and sugar. Add the flour and mix using the paddle attachment (or mix by hand with a wooden spoon). Do not knead the dough.
Lightly cover the bowl and let it rest at room temperature for 2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size, then collapses.
At this point, the dough can be used immediately, or it can be stored in the refrigerator in a covered container and used within 5 days. The dough can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 weeks.
The dough can be baked as a sandwich loaf in a loaf pan, an artisan loaf in a Dutch oven, or as a freeform boule on a baking sheet or baking stone. See baking instructions for each below.
To Bake a Sandwich Loaf
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan with baking spray or butter.
When you are ready to bake, lightly dust the dough and take about 2 lbs of dough (this is half of the full portion). Dust the dough with flour and very lightly knead it and shape it into an elongated ball by stretching the edges of the dough to the middle. Turning the ball seam side down. Lightly cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let it rest for 90 minutes at room temperature.
Slash the dough with a serated knife. Brush with melted butter.
Place in the oven to bake for 45 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown with an internal temperature of 195° to 205°F. Brush the top of the bread with a little more melted butter upon removing from the oven. Take the bread out of the pan and cool before slicing.
To Bake an Artisan Loaf in a Dutch Oven
Prepare parchment paper to fit the size of your Dutch oven. Set parchment paper aside. Place the Dutch oven into the oven and preheat the oven to 375°F.
When you are ready to bake, lightly dust the dough and take about 2 lbs of dough (this is half of the full portion). Dust the portion of dough with flour and very lightly knead and shape it into a ball by stretching the edges of the dough to the middle. Turning the ball seam side down. Place in the parchment paper, dust with flour, and lightly cover with plastic wrap or a large bowl, and let it rest for 90 minutes at room temperature.
If you wish, use a serrated knife to slash the dough in your desired pattern, just cutting about 1/4 inch into the dough.
Carefully remove the hot Dutch oven from the oven. Lower the parchment paper with the dough into the oven, cover, and return to the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to bake for another 30 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown with an internal temperature of 205°F. Take the bread out of the pan and cool completely before slicing.
To Bake a Freeform Boule (On a Baking Sheet or Baking Stone)
When you are ready to bake, cut off your desired amount from the dough. I baked free form loaves from portions about the size of a grapefruit on a baking stone. Dust the portion of dough with flour and very lightly knead and shape it into an elonglated ball. Lightly cover with plastic wrap on an inverted bowl and let it rest for 90 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the rack in the center of the oven with the baking stone, if using.
If baking on a baking stone, lightly dust the bottom of the loaf with cornmeal. Otherwise, place on a parchment-lined baking tray. Lightly brush the top of the loaf with melted butter. Bake for about 45 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown. Brush the top of the bread with a little more melted butter upon removing from the oven. Take the bread out of the pan and cool before slicing.
From The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, Jeff Hertzberg, M.D. and Zoe Francois (Thomas Dunne Books, 2013).The original recipe for Buttermilk Bread as it appears in The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day calls for loaves to be baked in loaf pans, however, I provide instructions as well for making this in the Dutch oven or to make free form boules, in smaller portions.
No-Knead Buttermilk Bread Tips/FAQs
Can I use all-purpose flour? Yes, absolutely. If you swap out the bread flour for all-purpose flour, reduce the water to 2 cups.
My dough feels wet, is that okay? No-knead doughs are generally wetter and stickier than standard dough recipes. I recommend flouring your hands before handling the dough, and if you must, add more flour about a tablespoon at a time.
My dough isn't rising. Try to find a warm spot for your dough. How quickly your dough rises depends on your room temperature. If it's chilly in my house, I place my dough in a 100°F oven for a while, or a warm clothes dryer with the door oven.
How long can I keep the dough in the refrigerator? Up to 5 days.
Can I freeze the dough? Yes! Simply defrost the dough in the refrigerator overnight before baking.
How long can I keep the dough in the freezer? Up to 3 weeks.
How do I slice the bread? The first tip is to make sure that the loaf has fully cooled before slicing. If you try to slice into warm bread, it will be too soft and collapse under your knife. Use a serrated knife! Another tip is slice the loaf on its side to help keep its shape.
How is the nutrition information calculated? This recipe make two large loaves (or smaller loaves, if you prefer) - the nutrition information is calculated per large loaf and not by individual serving size.