Basic White Bread

Home-baked, crusty loaf of bread with knife, close-up
Peter Anderson / Getty Images
    2 hrs 30 mins
Ratings (4)

This is an excellent recipe for basic white bread. Not only does it taste great, it makes the whole house smell wonderful.

Related Recipe: Bread Machine Country White Bread

What You'll Need

  • 2 cups warm water, about 100 F to 110 F
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 6 cups flour, more or less, divided
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 envelope instant yeast
  • 2 cups very warm water, about 100 F to 110 F
  • 2 tablespoons softened butter

How to Make It

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the warm water and yeast; stir and let stand for 5 minutes.
  2. Add 2 cups of the flour, sugar, and salt, and butter. With the mixer on low speed, beat until well blended.
  3. Continue beating at high speed for 3 minutes.
  4. Add 1/2 cup flour and beat 4 minutes longer. Stir in 3 cups flour, or enough to make the dough soft.
  5. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic, adding more flour as necessary.
  1. Place dough in a large buttered bowl, turning to butter top.
  2. Cover with a clean towel and let rise for about 1 hour in a warm place, free of drafts. Punch dough down; knead until smooth.
  3. Cut dough in half, cover with the mixing bowl and let stand for 15 minutes longer.
  4. Roll each half into a 12x9-inch rectangle. Starting with the narrow edge, roll up, turning ends under to make loaves to fit pans.
  5. Place rolls seam side down in greased loaf pans, 9x5x3-inches. Cover pans with a clean towel and let rise in a warm place until doubles it size, it will take about 45 minutes.
  6. Bake the loaves at 400 F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until loaves sound hollow when tapped with fingers. Remove from pans to racks; brush with butter for a soft, more flavorful crust, if desired.

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