This recipe for Fluffy French Bread is my go-to bread recipe. It makes one loaf and is easily doubled to make for a crowd.
Everyone needs a recipe for the perfect Fluffy French Bread. There’s nothing like fresh from the oven warm bread to have with Sunday dinner. Especially with some melty butter. Mmmm. Maybe a little garlic and Italian seasoning.
The trick with any bread recipe is to give the dough long enough to rise. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started to make bread only to be rushed at the end, not giving it enough time. There are a few tricks like preheating the oven for a few minutes that help, but it really makes a difference when you put in the time for rising. If there are leftovers, I like to use them to make bread pudding the next day or meatloaf.
The reason I like this recipe so much is that it makes a reasonably large loaf, and it’s easily doubled to make two loaves if I’m making it for the family. I usually make two loaves anyway, because I could eat slice after slice. IT’S THAT GOOD.
Fluffy French Bread
- 1 cup warm water
- 2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 Tablespoon white granulated sugar or honey
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon oil
- 2-1/2 to 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 egg beaten for top of bread
Preheat oven to 375 F. Prepare a baking sheet with silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
In bowl of stand mixer, combine warm water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit 5-7 minutes or until foamy.
Mix in salt, oil, and 2 cups flour on low speed until combined. Add half cup flour at a time until dough pulls away from sides of bowl and is only slightly sticky. Mix on low to medium speed for 3-5 minutes, or hand knead.
Place dough in greased bowl and let rise for 45 minutes at room temperature, it should be almost double in size. Roll out into a 9X13 inch rectangle and then roll up into a long roll, about 2-3 inches high and 13 inches long.
Place on baking sheet and slice slits in top of bread 2-3 inches apart, and about ¼ inch deep. Let rise one hour, or until about doubled in size.
Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes, top should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. Brush egg onto top of loaf and bake for another 2-3 minutes. This gives the outside of the loaf a nice shine and a little crunch.
Notes: Placing dough in the oven and preheating it to 200 F and then shutting the oven off and propping the door open with a wooden spoon can decrease rising time by 15-20 minutes on either rise.
If you have a love of bread and cheese, try my recipe for Cheese Biscuits just like the ones from Red Lobster!