Slow-Cooker No-Knead Artisan Bread {White and Whole Grain Recipes}


I'm a sucker for homemade bread.  I could eat bread, slathered with butter, for an entire meal.  Because of that, I'm thrilled with this recipe - you can make a small or large loaf AND it's so very easy.

I make small loaves so I'm not tempted to make a meal of bread...….

If you love to serve homemade bread but don't have a lot of time to make it, this could be your answer.  It's so simple and delicious that you'll find it in my refrigerator most weeks, waiting to be baked.  Taking only minutes to whip it up and a few hours to rise, you cut portions off the dough to bake throughout the week, leaving the remainder in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

It's that easy.

Below, you'll find instructions for baking it in the slow-cooker as well as the oven.  The oven versions makes for an all-over crusty loaf whereas the crockpot version makes a softer top and crusty bottom, although a minute under the broiler will crisp it right up if you prefer.

Both are delicious. 




No-Knead Artisan Bread
Source:  Artisan Bread In Five

White Bread Version
3 cups lukewarm water {100 degrees F or below}
1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
1 - 1/2 Tablespoon coarse salt (you can use regular salt, but decrease to 3 teaspoons)
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

In a 5-quart bucket or bowl {I use my kitchenaid mixer and dough hook then transfer mixed dough to a plastic food-grade bucket}, add the yeast and salt then pour the lukewarm water over the top.  Allow to sit a few minutes as the yeast and salt dissolve.  Don't worry if not all of it dissolves.  Mix in the flour, all at once is fine, just until thoroughly blended.  Don't knead - it's unnecessary.  The dough should be very wet - don't add additional flour. 



If you've mixed this in a bowl, transfer to a container you will use to store bread in, cover loosely, and allow to rise for 2 hours at room temperature.  Once it's risen, refrigerate dough {don't deflate}in loosely covered container for up to 14 days, cutting pieces off as needed to bake.




Whole Grain Version
5 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2 cups unbleached all-purpose Flour
1 1/2 Tablespoons active dry yeast
1 Tablespoon coarse salt {can be decreased if desired; you can use regular salt, decrease to 2 teaspoons}
1/4 cup Vital Wheat Gluten {or Vital Wheat Gluten Flour}
4 cups lukewarm {100 degrees Fahrenheit} water
1-2 Tablespoons whole seed mixture for sprinkling on the top {i.e. sunflower seeds, flax seeds, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, or a mixture}

In a 5-quart bucket or bowl {I use my kitchenaid mixer and dough hook then transfer mixed dough to a plastic food-grade bucket}, mix together the dry ingredients, except whole seed mixture, whisking to fully incorporate.  Add the water and mix. The dough should be very wet - don't add additional flour. 

If you've mixed this in a bowl, transfer to a container you will use to store bread in, cover loosely, and allow to rise for 2 hours at room temperature.  Once it's risen, refrigerate dough {don't deflate}in loosely covered container for up to 14 days, cutting pieces off as needed to bake.


Oven Instructions Baking Stone/Cookie Sheet:
On baking day, sprinkle the top of the dough with a few Tablespoons of flour.  Cut off a grapefruit-size piece of dough {about 1 pound}.  You can use a serrated knife or kitchen shears if needed to make this easier.  With floured hands, sprinkle the entire loaf with flour and quickly shape the dough by rounding it under, being careful not to deflate the dough.

Lightly sprinkle a baking peel or baking sheet with cornmeal.  Set the dough on the cornmeal and cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for 90 minutes.  30 minutes before baking, place a baking stone on the middle rack of the oven and an empty broiler tray on the rack directly below it, and preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.  {**I've also used a cookie sheet successfully, in place of the baking stone.**)

If you are using the Whole Grain recipe, immediately before baking, brush water on the top of the loaf with a pastry brush and sprinkle with the whole grain seed mix.

For either White Bread or Whole Grain recipe, using a serrated knife, slash 2 or 3 slashes across the loaf, about 1/4 inch deep.

Slide dough onto hot baking stone and add 1 cup of hot tap water to the hot broiler tray.  Close oven door and bake 25-30 minutes, or until bread is firm and instant-read thermometer reads 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

Allow to cool completely before slicing.


Oven Instructions Dutch Oven:
On baking day, sprinkle the top of the dough with a few Tablespoons of flour.  Cut off a 1 1/2 grapefruit-size piece of dough {about 1 1/2 pounds}.  You can use a serrated knife or kitchen shears if needed to make this easier.  With floured hands, sprinkle the entire loaf with flour and quickly shape the dough by rounding it under, being careful not to deflate the dough.

Tear off a piece of parchment paper, about double the size of the dough.  Set the dough on the parchment and cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to sit at room temperature for 90 minutes.  45 minutes before baking, place a dutch oven with lid on in the oven and preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.  {**leave the dutch oven in for the entire 45 minutes - it needs to be heated thoroughly**)

If you are using the Whole Grain recipe, immediately before baking, brush water on the top of the loaf with a pastry brush and sprinkle with the whole grain seed mix.

For either White Bread or Whole Grain recipe, using a serrated knife, slash 2 or 3 slashes across the loaf, about 1/4 inch deep.

Very carefully remove the dutch oven from the oven.  Remove the lid and quickly drop the dough on the parchment inside the pan.  Cover with the lid and place back in the oven.  Bake *14-20 minutes, or until bread is firm, golden brown, and instant-read thermometer reads 200 degrees Fahrenheit.  

Allow to cool completely before slicing.

{*cooking time depends on the amount of dough and how hot your dutch oven is*}


Slow-Cooker Instructions:
First, check with the manufacturer of your crock-pot to ensure your crock-pot is not required to be filled at least partially with liquid in order to safely use it.  Additionally, you should always be present when cooking in your crock-pot.

Line your crock-pot with a piece of parchment paper.  Using the instructions above, cut off 1 pound of dough and prepare.  Set on top of the parchment, turn crock-pot to "high" and cover with lid.  Bake for 1 hour.  Check bread for doneness {if you have an instant-read thermometer, bread should reach 200 degrees Fahrenheit}.  Bread should feel firm.

You can serve as is, with a softer top crust and harder bottom crust or, if you prefer a crispy crust, put under the broiler, on a broiler-safe pan, for up to 5 minutes, watching closely.

Remove, allow to cool slightly, and serve.

7 comments

Jennifer - The Deliberate Mom said...

This sounds like a fabulous and relatively easy recipe to make.

Thanks for sharing.
xoxo

Our Neck of the Woods said...

I'd love to try the whole grain version! I need to get a plastic container like you have for the dough to rise. It's the perfect vessel! And I'm with you - I could eat just bread with butter for a whole meal!

Angie said...

There is nothing on earth better than a loaf of fresh homemade bread. Very excited to try this, thanks for sharing!

daisy g said...

There's a reason why it's called "the staff of life". It's my go-to comfort food-and boy have I been missing it!
This looks so easy, especially if you have a mixer!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful recipe!!!

Thank you for sharing - I can't wait to try it out.

born ambitious. born imaginative. said...

My husband would love this!.

Elisha said...

Now I'm looking for the no knead cinnamon roll recipe... Is that on your blog??? Also would LOVE to try the rhubarb soda syrup this summer!!!!!!