French Baguette – simple, no-knead recipe

French Baguette – simple, no-knead recipe

I am really passionate about baking and bakery, so very soon I came across the recipe for the French baguette. I regret not trying it earlier, it’s delicious bread, it’s easy to make and it is always a nice touch for a meal. Just as in the Ciabatta bread recipe, there is little effort, you only need to be a bit organized in order to be able to serve the baguette when you plan to.
The total preparation time is approximately 5 hours, but don’t get scared – it’s mostly time in which the dough stays in the bowl and rises. The work is easy and you have 4 main ingredients, the rest is just a bit of technique and attention. It is worth the effort of serving a real French baguette, crusty and nicely flavored.


White flour
550 g
preferably 12g of protein flour (check the label)
Warm water
370 ml
Active dry yeast
5 g
or 10g fresh yeast
12 g

Step by step


In a big bowl, mix the flour, the salt and the yeast.


Pour the water.


Mix all the ingredients with a spatula or a spoon, until you get a relatively compact dough, without crumbs of flour.


Cover the bowl with plastic foil and a cloth and leave it like this for 45 minutes at room temperature.


After 45 minutes, wet your hands with water and prepare the dough like this:

-Take one of the sides;


-And bring it to the middle of the bowl.

In the same way, bring the other 3 sides to the middle of the bowl, and this is it – now cover the dough again and leave it to rise for another 45 minutes


After this time, repeat the procedure: bring the sides of the dough to the middle.
This time, you can use a special plastic spatula for dough – it is very useful, if you see it in a shop, I recommend to buy it.
Cover the dough again and leave it for another 45 minutes


After its third rise, take the dough out of the bowl (using your moist hands or a spatula) and place it on the table after you have sprinkled some flour.
Sprinkle some flour over the dough as well.


Divide it in 3 equal parts and shape them into cylinders, approximately 10 cm long.
Leave them on the table for 10 minutes.


Meanwhile, prepare a big oven pan, line it with baking paper and sprinkle flour on it.


Now take each cylinder and start pressing with your fingers until you get a rectangle.
Sprinkle flour on the table to make shaping the dough easier.


Then start twisting the long side of the rectangle, and after each twist press the edges a little bit – look at the photo and see how I am pressing in the middle.


When you finished twisting, you have a baguette, now you can adjust it with your hands to fit in the oven pan.


This way you form 3 baguettes and place them in the pan, notice the big distance between them. 


Pull up the baking paper between the baguettes and get them closer to each other until they are stuck to each other, but still separated by the paper wall.


Roll 2 kitchen towels and place them in the pan next to the baguettes on the sides, to support them.
Leave them like this for 45 minutes, the 2 kitchen towels will help them rise upwards, not on the sides.


Cover everything with a cloth and, optionally, you can sprinkle a few drops of cold water.


Prepare the oven 20-30 minutes before -  preheat the oven to 250 degrees C, and down, at the bottom of the oven, place a small tray or pan and pour a cup of water in it. This is necessary for the steam to form inside – and this is how the baguettes will get that nice crust.


Now that the baguettes have risen, remove the kitchen towels on the sides and carefully pull back the baking paper – so that the baguettes come to their initial positions.
Sprinkle some flour over them and use a sharp knife to make the specific slashes.


Place them in the hot steaming oven and bake for 25 minutes.
Optionally, now you can sprinkle some more water on the oven’s walls, just to make more steam.


The baguettes are ready when they are nice and brown.


Carefully take them out of the pan and cover them with a kitchen towel for 15-20 minutes.
Let them cool down for a bit and serve with pleasure while they are warm.


Quantity: 3 pieces
Prep time: 400 min
Difficulty: intermediate
Ready in: 15 min
Publish date:

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