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Easy No Knead Ciabatta Bread

This is an Easy no Knead, One bowl Italian Ciabatta Bread. Two hours and you can have Homemade Bread for lunch or dinner. Perfect with your favorite soup or stew or with a slice or prosciutto!

Bread with 2 slices cut.


 

When I moved to Italy, I discovered that bread was a very serious business! Fresh whether it be the local bakery or homemade fresh daily bread was a must.

Recipe Ingredients

  • Water – lukewarm
  • Honey
  • Yeast – active dry
  • Flour – all purpose flour or bread flour
  • Salt

How to make a Ciabatta Bread Recipe

In a small bowl add water, honey and yeast, let sit 5-10 minutes then stir.

In a large bowl add the flour , make a well in the centre and add the yeast mixture and a little water, if the dough is too dry then add a little more flour a little at a time, until you reach a wettish dough. But remember Ciabatta is a high hydration bread, so do not over flour, or you will not get those lovely air pockets inside the bread.

Mix together with a wooden spoon, when almost mixed add the salt and combine. The ciabatta dough will be loose and sticky. Sprinkle the top with 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour.

mixing the ingredients to make ciabatta bread

Cover the bowl with a large tea towel or plastic wrap.

the ingredients mixed with flour sprinkled on top to make ciabatta bread

Place in a warm, draft free area and let the dough rise.

ingredients in a white bowl after 1 1/2 hour rise

Carefully move the dough from the bowl with a bench scraper or spatula to the prepared baking sheet, making sure that the floured top of the dough remains on the top. Using wet hands can also help with moving the dough easier.

ciabatta bread ready for baking

With a spatula or wet hands form the dough into an oblong loaf, place some ice cubes on a pan on the bottom of the oven to create vapor or add the pan when pre-heating the oven and pour 1 cup of very hot water into the pan before adding the dough to the middle rack. Bake until golden and baked through. Immediately move to a wire rack to cool before cutting and serving.

Why do I add ice cubes or hot water?

Adding the ice cubes or hot water to the preheated oven creates steam. They melt and evaporate at just the right time. Once they evaporate and are no longer creating steam this gives the bread a chance to form that lovely outer crust.

I recommend using a thick metal dish rather than a glass or ceramic cake pan if you are using ice cubes as the difference in temperatures can cause the dish to crack.

How to tell when bread is done

You can tell bread is done when you tap on the bottom of the loaf and there is a hollow sound, but if you want to be 100 percent sure, then using a thermometer is your best best, the bread is baked when the centre of the loaf registers 200 to 210 degrees.

A loaf of ciabatta bread.

What is Ciabatta Bread

This bread is originally from the North of Italy, from the Province of Rovigo in Veneto Region. It is a flat, elongated bread with a light texture. It is a very simple bread, made up of a very high quantity of water which produced a very wet dough. It produces a very large crumb. And is considered a typical old fashioned Italian bread.

Why I became intrigued with bread making I have know idea, it started in my early twenties and went from there.

I would try making something now and then from Bagels to Pizza and the occasional Loaf of Bread.

I also discovered that bread making isn’t nearly as difficult as I thought and this Italian Ciabatta (Ciabatta meaning Slipper in English, because of the shape and flatness of the bread).

bread with a slice of prosciutto.

Can I substitute active dry yeast?

Yes you can substitute with instant yeast, for every teaspoon of active dry yeast use 3/4 teaspoon of instant yeast. Also be aware it won’t need as much time to rise.

How to store it

Keep the baked cooled bread, closed in an airtight bag, for 2-3 days. You can freeze it in freezer safe bags, defrost the bread in the refrigerator as needed, passing them in the oven for a few minutes to revive them. It will keep up to 2-3 months in the freezer.

This Homemade Ciabatta Bread is a simple and delicious bread. The perfect addition to whatever you are serving, amazing as a dipping bread also! I hope you enjoy it! Buon Appetito!

A loaf of bread with a slice cut.

More delicious homemade bread recipes you may enjoy!

Bread with 2 slices cut.

Homemade Italian Ciabatta Bread

Rosemary Molloy
Homemade Italian Ciabatta Bread, an easy Italian Bread Recipe, perfect for dipping or using as an appetizer. Delicious.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Rising Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Bread and Pizza
Cuisine Italian
Servings 1 loaf
Calories 998 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • ¾-1 cup + 1 tablespoon water lukewarm (divided)
  • ½ teaspoon honey (or granulated sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 cups + 3 tablespoons all purpose flour (or bread flour) (divided) (273 grams total)
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl add ¼ cup of water, honey and yeast, let sit 5 minutes then stir.
  • In a large bowl add the flour , make a well in the centre and add the yeast mixture and 1/2 cup of water (if too dry then add the extra 1/4 cup 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach a wettish dough). Mix together with a wood spoon, when almost mixed add the salt and combine. The dough will be loose and sticky. Sprinkle the top with 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour.
  • Cover the bowl with a large tea towel, place in a warm, draft free area and let rise for 1 1/2 hours.
  • Pre-heat oven to 425F (220C), line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour.
  • Carefully move the dough from the bowl to the prepared baking sheet, making sure that the floured top of the dough remains on the top. With a spatula form the dough into an oblong loaf.
  • Place the baking sheet on the middle rack, bake for approximately 20 – 25 minutes. Move immediately to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing and serving. Enjoy!

TO CREAT VAPOUR

  • While the oven is pre-heating place an empty cake pan at the bottom of the oven, add 4-5 ice cubes or a cup of very hot water before adding the bread dough on the baking sheet to the middle shelf.

Notes

The dough should be wettish, so if it is too dry with 3/4 cup water then add another 1/4 cup (1 tablespoon at a time). 
Keep the baked cooled bread, closed in an airtight bag, for 2-3 days. You can freeze it in freezer safe bags, defrost the bread in the refrigerator as needed, passing them in the oven for a few minutes to revive them. It will keep up to 2-3 months in the freezer.

Nutrition

Calories: 998kcal | Carbohydrates: 203g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 4g | Sodium: 2342mg | Potassium: 496mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 3g | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 12.1mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a comment below or pin it to your Pinterest account!

Updated from November 27, 2018.

248 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I did not have high expectations because bread recipes all tend to look pretty similar, but WOW! I was so happy with how this turned out. I ate half the loaf in one sitting, it was so good. Thank you for this recipe! I used the ice cube method and it gave a thin, crispy crust vs the thicker crust I get when I mist with water. Will be sure to make it again

      1. 5 stars
        Hi Nisha here dis is d best bread recipe Thanks for d recipe what happens if d bread proven longer time Dan d recipe mention time

      2. Hi Nisha, if bread proofs too long it won’t bake as well as it should and it could also be misshapen. Hope that helps. Glad you like the bread. Take care!

  2. Could i make this into “rolls”? I was thinking after the first rise might be when i simply slice it into my “rolls” and then possibly a second rise? Or do you think i could just make the rolls before the first rise.

    1. Hi Ash, ciabatta bread dough is quite a wet dough, it will probably be a bit difficult to form into rolls. But if you want to try I would do it before the rise. Let me know how it goes. Take care!

    2. Most ciabatta buns are just cut into squares during the final shaping process because of how we the dough is. Use a bench scraper dipped in water to do so without mishap.

  3. Hi. I tried to follow your directions exactly, but I must have done something wrong, because my bread was dense, without holes like yours. Any advice? Thank you

  4. “In a small bowl 1/4 cup of water, honey and yeast, let sit 5 minutes then stir.”

    So does this mean I just dump the ingredients in bowl and let it set 5 minutes before I stir it all together, or do I stir it together then let it set 5 minutes? A different bread recipe i made i stirred those together then let it set so I’m confused.

    1. Hi Christina, yes in a small bowl add the water, honey and sprinkle the yeast on top, let it sit for 5-10 minutes and then stir together. Hope that helps. Let me know how it goes. Take care!

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious! Made in the morning to share for brunch with a friend. Love the simplicity and hands of approach.

  6. 5 stars
    i have tried other recipes, best one, easier. awesome texture and flavor to this bread !!!

  7. Hello Rosemary,
    Do the ice cubes go in the oven right before the bread, or well before the oven is heated?

  8. Not getting the ice cube directions? Do I add the ice cubes in separate pan or in same pan? And when do I put it in the oven, is it at same time?

    1. Hi Annamarie, I rewrote that part. While the oven is pre-heating place an empty cake pan at the bottom of the oven, add 4-5 ice cubes or a cup of very hot water before adding the bread dough on the baking sheet to the middle shelf. I hope that helps. Let me know. Take care!

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