I always thought you can't make real French baguettes at home, but once I tried it I realized I was wrong. Again. You're going to be fairly shocked when you realize just how simple this is. The only way to make bread this any more French is to put some butter on it!

Chef John
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Ingredients

6
Original recipe yields 6 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Place yeast into the bottom of a large mixing bowl and stir with water; mix in salt. Beat flour into yeast mixture with a wooden spoon until dough is thick and sticky and pulls flour from the side of the bowl, 5 to 10 minutes.

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  • Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let stand in a turned-off oven until doubled in size, 12 to 14 hours. Dough will be bubbly and very sticky.

  • Place a silicone baking mat onto a baking sheet and dust generously with cornmeal.

  • Use a floured spatula to scrape dough out onto a well-floured work surface and dust dough with flour. With well-floured hands, pat dough into a rectangle and cut into 4 equal-size pieces.

  • Dust a piece of dough with flour and use your floured fingers to gently roll and stretch it out into a log about 10 inches long and 1 1/2 inches around. Gently transfer to prepared baking sheet. If desired, wipe off excess cornmeal with a damp paper towel. Repeat with another piece of dough. (Reserve remaining dough to bake later or prepare 2 baking sheets to bake all 4 at once). Dust loaves lightly with flour. Dust a large piece of plastic wrap with flour and drape plastic lightly over the baking sheet with floured side down.

  • Let loaves rise, covered, until doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hour.

  • Move oven racks to the bottom and middle positions. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F (260 degrees C) or as high as your oven will go. Place an oven-safe baking dish full of water into bottom rack of the oven.

  • Use a sharp kitchen shears to cut 4 or 5 angled slashes into the top of each loaf. Poke down the little sharp tips of dough left by the scissors. Spray loaves with water, using a spray bottle.

  • Bake in the preheated oven until baguettes are browned, about 15 minutes, spraying loaves with water after 5 minutes and 10 minutes. Turn the pan around on the second spraying.

  • Transfer baguettes to a cooling rack and let cool to room temperature before slicing with a serrated knife.

Cook's Note:

For best results, measure by weight, not volume for this. You should measure out 325 grams water and 18 ounces flour by weight (500 grams).

Partner Tip

Reynolds® parchment can be used for easier cleanup/removal from the pan.

Nutrition Facts

305 calories; 0.8 g total fat; 0 mg cholesterol; 682 mg sodium. 63.8 g carbohydrates; 8.7 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (82)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
11/29/2013
A very nice baguette recipe. The dough was much looser (wetter) than I remember from culinary school, but it turned out great. I doubled the yeast to half a teaspoon and got a nice rise in about 7 hours - still plenty of time to develop great flavor. I like the kind of baguette you almost break your teeth on with a thick hard crust - this recipe won't give you that but it's the best you'll get from a home oven. Still a crisp and satisfying crust. Don't trust any recipe with an egg wash if you want that crisp crust! Helpful Tip: If you don't have a silpat silicone sheet you can do what I did and nest one sheet pan inside another equal sized pan, and this will insulate against over-browning (aka burning) on the bottom of the loaf. Parchment paper is always your friend. Otherwise an excellent recipe from Chef John. Don't forget your imported french butter! Read More
(52)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
02/21/2017
In the video chef John says to weigh ingredients but gives no amounts. In the actual recipe the amounts are given but the flour quantity is incorrect . It was way too dry before it got to 4 cups. It should only read 3 cups. Otherwise they tasted great! Read More
(6)
101 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 83
  • 4 star values: 12
  • 3 star values: 2
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 5 stars
11/28/2013
A very nice baguette recipe. The dough was much looser (wetter) than I remember from culinary school, but it turned out great. I doubled the yeast to half a teaspoon and got a nice rise in about 7 hours - still plenty of time to develop great flavor. I like the kind of baguette you almost break your teeth on with a thick hard crust - this recipe won't give you that but it's the best you'll get from a home oven. Still a crisp and satisfying crust. Don't trust any recipe with an egg wash if you want that crisp crust! Helpful Tip: If you don't have a silpat silicone sheet you can do what I did and nest one sheet pan inside another equal sized pan, and this will insulate against over-browning (aka burning) on the bottom of the loaf. Parchment paper is always your friend. Otherwise an excellent recipe from Chef John. Don't forget your imported french butter! Read More
(52)
Rating: 5 stars
12/23/2013
Very easy and very tasty. Almost full proof. I used Bread Flour instead of all purpose flour and I think got better results. Read More
(20)
Rating: 5 stars
02/03/2014
I made this no-knead bread this weekend and it was delicious. My husband and I ate all four loaves in two days. I froze 2 loaves and let them thaw on the counter and then stuck them in a 350F oven for 5 minutes and they were just as good as the fresh baked ones. The crust was crunchy and the inside was soft and full of holes for the butter to sink in. This is now my go-to recipe for baguettes. I was worried about the texture (sticky), but it came together beautifully! So easy and so good. I started the bread the night before and we had fresh bread for lunch and dinner. FYI, I did use unbleached flour, and I put a cast iron skillet on the bottom rack of the oven and threw a glass of water in the skillet right before putting my bread in the oven (more steam)those were the only changes. Read More
(15)
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Rating: 5 stars
12/11/2014
Excellent recipe and techniques. If making for bruschetta I suggest rolling into logs about 3/4 of an inch thick and reduce cooking time by 2-3 minutes still allowing for 3 mistings. I also tried one loaf adding in some fresh roasted garlic and it was amazing. Read More
(6)
Rating: 4 stars
01/27/2014
My first attempt I must not have let the dough rise sufficiently because my bread was a bit too moist and underdone even though the crust browned perfectly. My second attempt was much better. I let it rise for almost 14 hours and made one loaf. It looks great and the bite I sliced off the end had good texture and taste. Read More
(6)
Rating: 3 stars
02/21/2017
In the video chef John says to weigh ingredients but gives no amounts. In the actual recipe the amounts are given but the flour quantity is incorrect . It was way too dry before it got to 4 cups. It should only read 3 cups. Otherwise they tasted great! Read More
(6)
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Rating: 2 stars
12/08/2013
I made this bread today was not impressed. It was dry and very dense waste of my time. Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
01/26/2015
Followed directions to a T and the bread was perfect! Very crusty and wonderful. Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
01/15/2016
Excellent recipe! I have made this dozens of times and find it to be an excellent no-kneed French Bread recipe. I typically make the dough into three small baguettes but I've also used this method to make bread bowls and "Boule" loaves. Three quick tips: 1. Use about 1/2 tsp. of yeast rather than 1/4 tsp. I have found this is the best amount for me. 2. I have found this works best if you can let this rest for at least 14 hours. I really think this delivers the best result. 3. PUT SOMETHING NON-STICK ON YOUR PAN. I can't emphasize this enough. You will need an uncoated steel or aluminum baking sheet and it is absolutely critical that you cover it with a silicon mat parchment paper or non-stick foil. If you don't you will NOT be able to get the loaves off without tearing them apart. You have been warned... Read More
(5)