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Perfect Homemade French Bread only requires a handful of simple ingredients for perfect, bakery style bread at home! 

A sliced loaf of French bread

There’s nothing quite like homemade bread. This homemade French bread is perfectly soft, with a nice chewy crust. It’s also incredibly simple and easy to make at home using just a handful of ingredients that most bakers will already have on hand.

It really doesn’t take much time either. Yes, it’s nearly 3 hours from start to finish, but your actual hands on time is quite minimal. A few minutes here, a few minutes there, and you have deliciously perfect homemade french bread at home.

  • Pan Options:

    If you don’t have a French bread pan, you can always use a regular baking sheet. Just be sure to give your loaves enough space in between them so that they don’t end up connected.

    If you come to love homemade french bread, I highly recommend investing in a french bread pan. It is perforated (has a lot of holes) which allows for even heat circulation. This ensures the best, highest quality of loaf at home. I highly recommend purchasing one. They are cheap and make a world of difference in the end result.

  • All-Purpose vs. Bread Flour

    Both all-purpose and bread flour can be used in this recipe interchangeably. Bread flour has a higher protein content which will produce more gluten, giving you a slightly chewier crumb and crust.

  • Why is my dough the wrong consistency?

    We know how frustrating it can be to follow a recipe and still have it not look like it is supposed to. With bread, you want to look at any recipe simply as a guide. Altitude, humidity, and temperature, among other things, can all impact homemade bread. Because of this, you always want to go off of the feel of the dough rather than following the recipe exactly. If your dough is at the perfect consistency and you haven’t used all of the flour, don’t worry about it. If you’ve added all of the flour required and your dough is too sticky, go ahead and add more until it is the right consistency. You will get a good idea of what your bread needs the more you make it!

  • Scoring the Bread

    This bread loaf requires you to cut slits into the top of the bread before baking. This process is called “scoring the bread.” As bread bakes, it expands and scoring helps release some of that pressure so that the bread can expand without awkward bulges.

    • Use a sharp knife or even a clean razer blade for scoring.
    • Rely on the blade itself rather than applying pressure to the bread.
    • Don’t go too deep or too shallow. 1/4 inch should be perfect.
  • How long will homemade French bread last?

    Due to the fact that there are not any chemicals or preservatives in homemade bread, it does not last more than a few days before going stale. The secret to keeping bread fresh is to have a little bit of airflow in whatever container you choose. Old school bread boxes are great for this, as well a linen or cotton bread bags or towels to wrap in.

3 whole loaves of homemade French bread

Watch the video below where Rachel will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

3 whole loaves of homemade French bread
Learn how to make Perfect Homemade French Bread. It only requires a handful of ingredients to make perfect bakery style bread at home!
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons instant dry yeast
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 1/2 - 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg beaten
Instructions
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, add yeast, water, salt, and 5 cups of flour. Knead on a slow speed until the flour has started to combine. Increase speed to medium and gradually add in remaining flour until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
  • Transfer to a lightly greased mixing bowl, cover with a towel, and let rise until double in size, about 1 hour.
  • Divide dough in half. Roll each half into a large rectangle. Roll up tightly from the long end. Place onto a lightly greased baking sheet or into a french bread pan. Cover and let rise 30-45 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Use a sharp knife to cut diagonal slashes on the top of each bread loaf, about 1/4 inch deep. Brush loaves with beaten egg.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown.
Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 1406kcal | Carbohydrates: 287g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 1796mg | Potassium: 460mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 120IU | Calcium: 76mg | Iron: 17.8mg
Course: Bread
Cuisine: French
Keyword: French Bread
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Barbara Dewey
July 15, 2020 12:32 pm

I’m making this recipe for the first time today. I’ve made other recipes for French bread but never yours. I’m hoping it turns out as good as all your other recipes, because I haven’t eaten anything yet that’s turned out bad! You’re my favorite chef, whether at home or as a professional chef and thank you for all your expertise and experience.

Sandy
May 28, 2020 9:45 am

Made this bread and it turned out perfect! Easy and delicious.

Kim Santamaria
May 23, 2020 8:55 am

This recipe makes excellent bread! Family loves it! Decided I would be making it often, so bought the French bread pans. Definitely a go-to recipe! Thank you!

joy
March 31, 2020 4:03 am

love this recipe. just baked it tonight and it came out very delicious. thanks for the recipe

June 11, 2020 9:53 pm

5 stars
Thank you for showing us the easiest n coolest way how to make french bread! Luv it, will try it!

March 27, 2020 12:34 pm

Thanks for sharing. The french bread are delicious. They came perfect. I love yo see you on Facebook

Lesley Castro
August 20, 2020 12:52 am

5 stars
Can you use bread flour. The recipe looks lush.

Cheryl
May 7, 2020 3:11 pm

5 stars
My family loved these French bread loaves, so much so that I am making them weekly for the family. Thank you for sharing a great recipe!

October 24, 2020 10:57 am

5 stars
First time I tried this recipe,, it came out perfectly…I will be making this again and again and…………..👍🥰.

Evelyn Thies
October 22, 2020 9:01 am

5 stars
So delicious! So easy! Made us all smile! Thank you

Sandra M Ryce
October 21, 2020 12:09 pm

5 stars
Almost ready to go into the oven! Can’t wait to get them out! Thanks for a great, easy recipe and love the videos!

Elaine Wallach
October 20, 2020 1:27 pm

Rachel- Could you add sourdough starter to give it the sourdough taste, and if so how much starter?

October 22, 2020 10:27 am
Reply to  Elaine Wallach

I would start with adding approx. 1 cup of sourdough starter to this recipe if you like, however it will change the consistency of the dough and you may need to add more flour to account for that. Everyone has a different preference on just how sour they like their bread, so you can always experiment around with using more or less starter. You would still need to use commercial yeast in addition to your starter though, to keep it on the same rising schedule. Sourdough without added yeast takes MUCH longer to rise.

Marlene DeBlau
October 14, 2020 10:21 pm

5 stars
Easy and delish. I had no idea I could bake bread!

Elizabeth
October 8, 2020 10:58 am

Excellent video instructions. I’m ready to try this recipe – thank you!

Leslie Tipton
October 7, 2020 1:48 pm

Hi Rachel.
I usually do not leave reviews but, couldn’t escape this time.
this French bread recipe automatically became my wife and Family favorite(absolutely delicious) ty

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