Overnight Bread

5 from 9 votes
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Overnight bread is made with four ingredients, no kneading and ready to bake overnight. Crispy golden outside, fluffy soft inside. You will never waste money on expensive boules of bread in the bakery again! This bread is going to change your life.

Up close photo of bread with jelly next to it.
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Why Make This Overnight Bread

This bread is almost too good to be true (but yet it exists and I am here to share!) My stepmom put me onto this bread and I haven’t stopped making it weekly since. You can add so many different ingredients to it to flavor it and make it different but the simple, four ingredients on their own is enough to have you running to the kitchen to bake.

No kneading required! Yep you heard that right, you simple whisk, mix and rest. There is only ONE resting period with this bread and it’s for about 12 hours or, overnight. It only takes about 40 minutes in the oven and it comes out incredible, golden, crusty and super soft and fluffy on the inside.

What is overnight bread? Is it better?

Overnight bread is just a very basic, simple bread recipe. It is quite honestly one of the easiest recipes to follow. There is no kneading or multiple rises needed. It’s simple mixed up, covered and left overnight to rise. That’s it! It’s similar to a crusty french bread boule you would purchase the the grocery store. It’s very rustic and mild in taste.

Ingredients Needed

Ingredients for bread on a counter.

All Purpose Flour. This is the base of the bread. I have not tried using any other flour, but I am very confident all purpose gluten free mix would work.

Active yeast. I buy the little square packet sin the baking aisle. You only need a little bit of yeast for this recipe.

Salt. This is the flavor to the bread. Don’t skip this part, I accidentally did my first round and the bread was pretty lame without the saltiness.

Warm Water. Not boiling, not cold, but warm to hot water from the faucet.

Corn Meal or Additional AP Flour. This is to coat the service of the dutch oven. I also sprinkle a little on the top of the bread to give it a nice rustic look.

Steps To Make This Recipe

Step one to make bread in a clar bowl with flour and mix.

Step One. Make sure you have a ceramic or cast iron 4 qt dutch oven with an oven safe lid. If you don’t, I have linked a perfect one here. This one is almost identical to the one I have. They are great for baking and for soups, you will find a lot of use with this.

Step Two. In a large ceramic or glass bowl, add the flour, yeast and salt. Whisk really well to ensure everything is evenly mixed. Next, get warm/hot water from the faucet or microwave the water you have for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Slowly pour it over the flour mix.

Step Three. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, slowly mix everything together. Be sure all of the flour mix is soaked up and mixed in. You can press the spatula down on the flour mix to help absorb everything. You may need to add a little bit more water at this step since brands of flour can vary greatly! I would recommend less than 1/4 cup at a time, mixing and then deciding if you need more.

Step Four. Dough should be sticky, but not too wet. It should hold together somewhat well, not crumble apart. A good in between is perfect, be sure to look at the photo of my dough to compare.

Steps to make the bread in a clear glass container and enveloping bread.

Step Five. Cover the glass/ceramic bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Make sure there is no air leaks. Leave in a warm area for at least 12 hours or overnight. The dough will double inside and appear humid in the bowl.

Time To Bake The Bread

Step Six. When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 450º. Place the dutch oven, without the lid on in the oven to heat up while the oven is preheating.

Step Seven. While the oven is preheating with the dutch oven in it, sprinkle a little flour over the dough, pull it out of the bowl, turn it upside down and fold it like an envelope. This just means to form a ball shape by folding the edges into one another (see photo for example). Pull the dutch oven out, sprinkle a little corn meal or flour on the bottom of the pot. Pick up the dough and gently place it in the pot. Cover it and place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes.

Bread right after the first inital cok.
How the bread should look once you take the lid off to cook for another 10 minutes.

Step Eight. After 30 minutes take the lid off of the dutch oven with oven mits, carefully and cook uncovered for another 10 minutes or until the top of the bread is golden in color. Let the bread cool a bit before slicing.

Bread on a white plate with jam on it.

FAQ’s & Recipe Tips

What type of yeast do i need?

You can actually use any yeast of choice for this recipe, it’s very forgiving. I have you active yeast/instant yeast and then regular yeast and both have worked.

Is this bread vegan?

Yes, this bread is vegan if you are okay with eating yeast.

Is it okay to leave the bread to rise longer than 12 hours?

Yes, you can let it rise for up to 24 hours. I wouldn’t wait much longer than that.

Recipe Parings

You can pair this bread with just about anything. I like to have mine fresh out of the oven with a little butter and jam. You can pair it with a salad like my Asian Cabbage Salad or my Kale and Beet Salad. This bread would also pair wonderful with Balsamic Bruschetta With Peppers. Really the options are endless!

Recipe Variations

Yeast. Use active yeast/instant yeast or dry yeast.

Flour. I have only tried this recipe with all purpose flour. If you want to try to make gluten free bread, I would only suggest all purpose gluten free blend flour.

Add Ins. I have tried this bread with different herbs added in, it’s wonderful. I have also mixed in chopped roasted garlic. Add these in when you are flouring and folding the dough up to go in the oven.

Other Baked Recipes To Try

If you loved this recipe let me know! Also, follow me on Instagram & Pinterest for even more fun recipes to make you feel good from the inside out. Thanks for being here.

Bread up close on a cutting board with jam.
5 from 9 votes

Overnight Bread

Overnight bread is made with four ingredients, no kneading and ready to bake overnight. Crispy golden outside, fluffy soft inside.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Rise Time: 12 hours
Servings: 9

Equipment

  • 1- 4 Qt Dutch Oven with lid Or something similar

Ingredients 

  • 3 cup all purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp yeast, *see notes
  • 1½-2 cup warm water, *see notes
  • tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour or corn meal , to sprinkle the raw dough with

Instructions 

  • Make sure you have a ceramic or cast iron 4 qt dutch oven with an oven safe lid. If you don't, I have linked a perfect one here. This one is almost identical to the one I have. They are great for baking and for soups, you will find a lot of use with this.
  • In a large ceramic or glass bowl, add the flour, yeast and salt. Whisk really well to ensure everything is evenly mixed. Next, get warm/hot water from the faucet or microwave the water you have for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Slowly pour it over the flour mix. Start with 1.5 cups, you may need more as you mix since flour absorption can vary greatly.
  • Using a wooden spoon or spatula, slowly mix everything together. Be sure all of the flour mix is soaked up and mixed in. You can press the spatula down on the flour mix to help absorb everything. You may need to add a little bit more water at this step since brands of flour can vary greatly! I would recommend less than 1/4 cup at a time, mixing and then deciding if you need more. Max would be 2 cups (which is what I typically need)
  • Dough should be sticky, but not too wet. It should hold together somewhat well, not crumble apart. A good in between is perfect, be sure to look at the photo of my dough to compare. 
  • Cover the glass/ceramic bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Make sure there is no air leaks. Leave in a warm area for at least 12 hours or overnight. The dough will double inside and appear humid in the bowl. 
  • When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 450º. Place the dutch oven, without the lid on in the oven to heat up while the oven is preheating. 
  • While the oven is preheating with the dutch oven in it, sprinkle a little flour over the dough, pull it out of the bowl, turn it upside down and fold it like an envelope. This just means to form a ball shape by folding the edges into one another (see photo for example).
    Pull the dutch oven out, sprinkle a little corn meal or flour on the bottom of the pot. Pick up the dough and gently place it in the pot. Cover it and place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes. 
  • After 30 minutes take the lid off of the dutch oven with oven mits, carefully and cook uncovered for another 10 minutes or until the top of the bread is golden in color. Let the bread cool a bit before slicing. 

Notes

*active/instant/dry/fast acting yeast
*water needed will vary, read the instructions in step three carefully. You will start with 1.5 cups and may need more, up to 2 cups max. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 156kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 0.4g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 389mg | Potassium: 49mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin C: 0.001mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Bailey
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Rise Time: 12 hours
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 9
Calories: 156
Keyword: Side Dish, snacks
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Recipe Rating




12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This was so easy! I can’t even believe I made my own load of bread, I feel so accomplished. Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    This is good. But why does my bread stick to the bottom of my Dutch oven? First bathes didn’t but the last couple have. Any idea? I sprinkle flour at the bottom.

    1. Hi Alicia, a few ideas for you to help prevent sticking. Try adding just a little less water to the mix. Another idea would be to add cornmeal instead of flour to the bottom it tends to prevent sticking better than flour. Let me know if that helps!!! Xoxo

  3. Hi, I love your recipes! I’ve made this bread a couple of times and love it!! Just have a question. Is it supposed to get rock hard after the first day? Other than that it tastes delicious! Thank you for your recipes!

    1. Hi Christy!
      It should not turn rock hard after 24 hours. Be sure to store it in an airtight ziplock bag on the counter for up to 2 days or up to 5 days in the fridge. It won’t be as crispy cutting right into it, however it crisps right back up in the toaster. I hope this helps! Happy Baking xoxo

  4. 5 stars
    This bread is frickin’ amazing! Could not be easier; I’ve never been much of a break baker because it’s seems like to much trouble. Well, not anymore! Thanks for such a great recipe!!! The crust is perfect, the interior is chewy, it’s perfection!

    1. Hi Andi!
      I am so thrilled to hear that you enjoyed this recipe and it was easy for you. That makes me so happy. Thanks for letting me know.

  5. 5 stars
    This was an easy and very good recipe. I will keep it and make again.

  6. 5 stars
    Can’t get over how easy this is to make me love this recipe. Thank you Bailey!

  7. 5 stars
    MAKE THIS RECIPE! it’s so easy and I’ve been making it for months. I have it memorized but always come back to dbl check. Thank you Bailey! We love this and your Garlic Roll recipe both are so easy.