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Best EASY Homemade Country Bread Recipe: NO KNEAD

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Are you looking for an easy homemade country bread recipe that would rival a loaf of bread from a bakery? All you need to make it is a dutch oven and four simple ingredients: bread flour, cold water, dry yeast, and salt. It has a crispy, great crust and a beautiful texture inside.


The first time we made this rustic peasant bread, we couldn’t believe it came out of our oven!

Even if you’ve failed with making bread before, or haven’t quite found the right recipe, we’ve got you! You’ll be amazed at how little effort can result in such a beautiful loaf.





Bread flour is not the same as all-purpose flour. Bread flour contains a higher protein content versus all-purpose. It is the protein in the flour that forms gluten in your dough.

And the more gluten, the stronger and stretchier the dough is. This results in lighter, yet chewier loaves of bread. 

Our favorite flour to use for this recipe is King Arthur Bread Flour (link to Amazon). It’s the only flour we use for our homemade bread-making! 

To measure the flour, we prefer to use one of two methods. The best way to have the most consistent bread is to weigh the flour using a kitchen scale. Depending on how you measure the flour, the amount of flour can actually vary quite drastically!

If you don’t have a kitchen scale handy (we strongly recommend having one in your kitchen), then you can spoon in the flour into the measuring cup and then level it off with a knife.

If you just take your measuring cup and dip it into your bag of flour and level it off, you will actually have a lot more flour (in weight) versus the other two methods that I just described.

Having more flour will change the texture of your loaf and it won’t be as consistent each time you make it.



We use Red Star Quick-Rise Instant Yeast for this bread.


This recipe uses cold water so there is no need to measure the temperature with a thermometer to make sure that you have sufficiently warm water like many other recipes. Instead, you’ll have time on your side to make sure the yeast is activated. 


We like to use Baleine Fine Sea Salt, but you can use any fine sea salt (or even just plain table salt) that you have on hand. Just don’t use coarse salt. 



​You may be wondering why this recipe requires a dutch oven. The simple reason is that in our home kitchen, we don’t have the benefit of steam injected ovens like they have in commercial bakeries. 

By partially cooking the bread with the dutch oven lid on in your oven, the water from the dough evaporates and creates steam. As a result, you will get a very good rise. And then when you finish baking with the lid off, it results in a gorgeous crust.

For this recipe we use a 4.5 quart Le Creuset dutch oven, but a 3.5 quart dutch oven also works well! You can use any other brand as well.

Besides using them for bread, these dutch ovens are VERY versatile and we use them extensively to cook dishes on top of our stoves as well.


You’ll need a set of measuring cups to measure out the flour. And a 1 cup or 2 cup Pyrex Prepware measuring cup to measure the water. No kitchen should be without these!


You’ll need a set of measuring spoons to measure the dry yeast.


We like to use unbleached parchment paper sheets. You can buy the rolls too, but it’s so easy to just take a sheet out.


A kitchen scale is optional, but if you can weigh the exact amount of flour, your bread will turn out more consistent. Otherwise, simply spoon in flour into your measuring cups and level it off with a knife.

This rustic country bread recipe results in a beautiful crust and lovely interior texture.



Into a medium bowl, weigh out your 525g of bread flour. Or if you don’t have a scale, measure out 3 1/2 cups of flour. Measure your bread flour by spooning it into your measuring cups and level with a knife.

Keep in mind that you’ll need extra room for the dough rise, so you need a sufficiently large bowl.

Next, into the same bowl, add 1 1/2 teaspoons of fine sea salt, and also 1/2 teaspoon Red Star Quick-Rise Instant Yeast.

Finally, add 1 3/4 cup of cool water to the bowl.

Next, it’s time to combine all the ingredients. At this point, you can simply use a fork to mix all the ingredients. Keep stirring with your fork until all of the flour is incorporated and there is no visible dry flour left.


If you’d like to use your stand mixer with a dough hook, you can measure out all the ingredients into the stand mixer bowl, and then mix with the dough hook on low to medium speed until all ingredients are incorporated. 


Next, loosely cover the bowl with a piece of plastic wrap. If you plan on making the bread the same day, you’ll leave it on the counter at room temperature for 8-10 hours for this first rise.

Easy Peasy Tip #1 – Or if you’d like to make the bread dough the day before, you can place the covered bowl in the refrigerator overnight until the next day when you are ready to bake it.

Please note that if you refrigerate the dough overnight, you would do this in PLACE of letting it sit on your counter for 8-10 hours. As soon as you’re done combining the ingredients, cover with plastic wrap and place into the refrigerator overnight (let it sit in there for about 12-14 hours).

The next day, when you remove it from the refrigerator, place it on the kitchen counter for 45 minutes, or up to 2 hours, before proceeding to the next step.


Place your dutch oven, with the lid on, into the middle rack of your oven, and preheat your oven to 450°F (232°C). Most dutch ovens will have lid handles that are heat safe, so make sure that your particular dutch oven can withstand the oven temperature. 

Grab the edge of the dough ball, pull it up a little bit. (You may want to sprinkle a little flour around the perimeter of the dough ball of it’s a little sticky to handle.)


Then press it into the middle of the dough ball.


Turn your bowl 90 degrees and do it again. Fold your dough a total of 8 times or so. 

At this point, you can either leave the dough in the same bowl, or gently scoop it with both hands into a new, clean bowl.

It is easier to just use a new, clean bowl. Before you transfer it to the new bowl, if you sprinkle a little flour at the bottom of the bowl, it will make it easier to transfer your dough ball out of the bowl later.


Cover bowl again with plastic wrap. On your kitchen counter, let it rise a second time for about 45 minutes.



Take a sheet of parchment paper and place your dough ball in the middle. You can turn the bowl upside down. It should come out easily if you’ve floured the bottom of the bowl. Use your hands to dislodge the dough ball if it’s sticky at all.


Sprinkle some bread flour lightly on top of the dough ball.


And if you’d like, you can take a sharp knife and make three shallow cuts on the dough ball. You don’t have to go too deep (maybe 1/2 inch deep). This will simply give the final bread loaf a pretty design when it’s done baking. 


Here are the 3 scores on the dough ball.



Grab each of the four corners of the parchment paper and pinch them together so you can carry the dough to the oven. Open your oven, use an oven mitt to remove the lid of the dutch oven, drop the parchment paper with the dough ball inside.


Adjust the parchment paper so it’s not covering the dough ball.


Place the dutch oven lid on and close your oven door.


Set your timer for 30 minutes. Once 30 minutes is up, remove the lid to the dutch oven. This is what the bread looks like so far after the initial 30 minutes.


Next, leave the lid off of the dutch oven, close the oven door, and allow your bread to bake for another 15 minutes without the lid. 

After the 15 minutes is up, take the dutch oven out of your oven. Grab the corners of the parchment paper and lift the bread loaf out. Let it cool slightly so you can handle the bread, and place the loaf on top of a wire rack and cool completely before slicing. 

The finished product! This country bread recipe will become your favorite.


This bread is best eaten fresh the same day.  But you can also store it in the refrigerator for a few days and slice it up to make toast. It makes incredible toast! 

Easy Peasy Tip #2 – You can also freeze your bread for longer storage. Place any leftover bread (make sure it is completely cooled) inside of a plastic freezer bag and place in your freezer. You can freeze a half a loaf or, even cut it into quarters or thirds.

Once you’re ready to reheat your frozen bread, take it out of the freezer, let it sit for an hour on the counter in the freezer bag. While it is sitting, preheat your oven to 400°F.

Take your bread out of the freezer bag and place your bread right on a middle oven rack for about 10 minutes. 


Easy Country Bread Recipe

Yield: 1 LOAF
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 13 hours

A simply delicious, beautiful crusty bread.


  1. In a medium bowl, weigh out 525g of bread flour, or measure 3.5 cups of bread flour. Spoon in the flour into the measuring cups, and level with the edge of a knife.
  2. Into the same bowl, add 1 1/2 teaspoons of fine sea salt, 1/2 teaspoon of Red Star Quick-Rise Instant Yeast, and 1 3/4 cups of cool water.
  3. If you have a stand mixer, use the dough hook attachment and mix on low to medium speed until the flour is just incorporated. Or, you can simply use a fork. Keep stirring until there is no visible flour left.
  4. Loosely cover the top of the bowl with plastic wrap. If you want to make the bread the same day, leave on the kitchen counter for 8-10 hours for the first rise. You can also prepare the dough the day before and put it in the refrigerator overnight. If you choose to refrigerate the dough, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator as soon as you've mixed all the ingredients together and leave it in there for 12-14 hours.
  5. For this next step, if you've left the dough on the counter, you can start folding the dough after the 8-10 hours. If you've refrigerated the dough overnight, take it out the next day and let it sit on the counter for 45 minutes or up to 2 hours, and then fold the dough. To fold the dough, grab the edge of the dough ball, pull it up a few inches, and then press it into the middle of the dough ball. Turn bowl 90 degrees and keep folding the dough about 8 times.
  6. Place your dutch oven with the lid on right on the middle rack of your oven. Preheat your oven to 450°F.
  7. Right after you've folded the dough, it's easiest if you transfer the dough ball to another bowl. Sprinkle some flour on the bottom of a new bowl, and gently lift the dough ball with both hands and place it into the floured bowl. Cover bowl loosely with plastic wrap. Allow it to rise for a second time for 45 minutes on your counter.
  8. Next, take a sheet of unbleached parchment paper, tip the bowl over gently and let the dough ball plop to the middle of the parchment paper.
  9. Sprinkle some more flour on top if you'd like, and with a sharp knife, make 3 scores on top of the dough ball. Cut about 1/2 inch deep. This will make a pretty design once the bread is baked.
  10. Grab each of the four corners of the parchment paper and pinch them together over the dough ball. Carry it carefully to your oven. Open the oven, remove the lid to the dutch oven and set the dough ball in (parchment paper and all). Spread the four corners of the parchment paper open and then set the lid back on the dutch oven. Place the lid of the dutch oven back on. Close your oven door and bake for 30 minutes.
  11. After 30 minutes, remove the dutch oven lid, and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
  12. Take your dutch oven out of your oven. Carefully remove the bread from the dutch oven by lifting it with the parchment paper. Slide the bread off the parchment paper onto a wire rack and let it cool to room temperature before slicing.


For the parchment paper, we like to use half sheets of unbleached parchment that are 12x16 inches or 13x16 inches. You can use rolls too, but the sheets really come in handy!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 88Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 176mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 3g

Nutrition values are merely estimates and aren't always accurate.

If you have any leftover bread that has gone slightly stale, this bread makes wonderful croutons! Check out our easy, oven-baked crouton recipe.

We hope you have enjoyed this easy country bread recipe. If you’ve tried making it, let us know how you like it!

If you’d like a variation on this bread, try our delicious cheddar jalapeno bread recipe! Or if you want something a little sweeter, try our amazing cinnamon raisin bread.


Thursday 31st of August 2023

I’ve never found bread to be ‘easy’ but this recipe changed my mind- delicious and approachable. I’m looking forward to making it again!

Two Peas in a Kitchen

Thursday 31st of August 2023

So glad you enjoyed it Meredith! You should also try our Cheddar Jalapeno Bread and Cinnamon Raisin bread. We think you will love those too!


Monday 7th of August 2023

Just baked this bread this morning and it was amazing! Made it yesterday and let it rise overnight in the fridge. So easy and delicious!! Will definitely make it again.

Two Peas in a Kitchen

Monday 7th of August 2023

So glad you enjoyed it Amy! Thanks for taking the time to comment!


Thursday 27th of July 2023

Wonderful recipe! I have never experienced homemade bread so tasty and beautiful. It is a must-try.

Two Peas in a Kitchen

Friday 28th of July 2023

We're so glad you enjoyed it!!

David Reimer

Tuesday 25th of July 2023

You inspired me. I’m going to make this recipe this evening. Brilliant

Two Peas in a Kitchen

Tuesday 25th of July 2023

Enjoy! Let us know how it turns out :-D

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