French Bread In One Hour

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This is my French bread in one hour recipe you can make at the last minute for any meal. It’s very simple to make and it’s moist and chewy in the center and crispy on the outside. This recipe is an old family recipe, and my four daughters would sell the bread door-to-door to make a little spending money when they were younger.

Of course, nowadays, I would never send my girls door-to-door to sell it. That was 40 years ago, boy things have changed.

We sold it at church bazaars and at school functions. We got orders ahead of time when people were having spaghetti and meatballs for dinner. It’s a favorite bread when taking dinner to neighbors with a pot of chicken noodle soup.

The original recipe from almost 50+ years ago calls for shortening. I use butter these days, but almost any oil could be substituted. Here’s the deal with this recipe, it says it makes three loaves. You could make two larger loaves or make the three skinny loaves. I made two loaves today with a special bread pan I’ve had for years.

French Bread In One Hour

Bowl or Bread Mixer

You can make this bread dough in a large bowl or use a Bosch bread mixer as I did. As you know, I love pictures to visualize what I’m going to make, so today here are my pictures for this bread.

Just so you know, I dump everything in my Bosch and start mixing. Yep, I start it on low and work up to high. I emphasize it’s easy to make this recipe, I promise. It’s actually a no-fail recipe that anyone can make. You can actually make French bread rolls with the same recipe.

If you have fresh ingredients you can make this recipe. Fresh is the keyword here. It’s so easy to make any beginner can make this bread.

Just mold them differently and cut the cooking time according to how big you make the rolls. You can make these loaves on a greased cookie sheet as well. You may remember, I worked at a fabulous Kitchen store and I love to buy quality kitchen tools because I enjoy cooking and baking almost everything.

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The thing I like about this recipe is that it doesn’t need eggs. So let’s get started with this easy French bread recipe.

Items You May Need In The Kitchen

French Bread In One Hour

Step One

I love to gather my ingredients before I start making the recipe for the day. You only need six ingredients, including the water!

French Bread In One Hour

Step Two

I dump everything in a bowl, or my Bosch bread mixer, and mix the bread dough for about 6-8 minutes.

French Bread In One Hour

Step Three

Mix until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bread mixer bowl.

French Bread In One Hour

Step Four

I then cut the dough with a dough cutter into two sections. 

French Bread In One Hour

Step Five

I roll out the two pieces of dough into a rectangle shape, roll them up into tube shapes, and then place them on a greased cookie sheet or French bread/baguette pan. I love my French bread pan, I think it helps the loaves maintain their shape.

French Bread In One Hour

Step Six

Make sure they are centered on the French bread pan so they bake evenly. They may flatten out slightly if cooked on a cookie sheet.

Roll the dough

Step Seven

Grease some plastic wrap to cover the dough and let it rise until double in size.

Cover with plastic wrap

Step Eight

Preheat the oven to (400°F) = (204°C). Just before placing the loaves in the oven to bake, remove the plastic wrap and use a sharp knife to slice a few shallow cuts on the diagonal on the top of the dough. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until golden brown.

Use a Knife to make cuts in the dough

Finished Product

Lightly brush the baked loaves with butter on the tops and serve while warm.

Finish Baking

French Bread In One Hour Recipe

5 from 6 votes
French Bread In One Hour
French Bread In One Hour
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Let Rise
20 mins
Total Time
1 hr
 
Course: Bread, Side Dish
Cuisine: French
Servings: 3 loaves
Ingredients
  • 2-1/2 cups hot water
  • 4 teaspoons SAF instant yeast
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon shortening or melted butter
  • 6 cups bread flour
Instructions
  1. I dump everything in a bowl or my Bosch bread mixer and mix the bread dough for about 6-8 minutes. I then cut the dough with a dough cutter into two sections. I roll out the two pieces of dough into a rectangle shape and roll up into a tube shape and place them on a greased cookie sheet or French bread/baguette pan. Grease some plastic wrap and cover the dough and let rise until double in size. Just before placing the loaves in the oven to bake, remove the plastic wrap and use a sharp knife to slice a few shallow cuts on the diagonal on the top of the dough. Preheat the oven to (400°F) = (204°C) and bake for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown. Lightly brush the baked loaves with butter on the tops and serve while warm.

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How do I store this bread?

I actually store my bread in bread bags. They are disposable and very inexpensive. Remember, this bread doesn’t have any preservatives so it will only be good for about 1-2 days sitting on your countertop. Bread Bags We love homemade bread and appreciate that it doesn’t have all the chemicals, including no preservatives, but it does prompt us to eat it faster.

Can I freeze it after baking it?

Yes, you can, that’s what I love about this recipe. You can make two loaves, or three smaller ones, and freeze some for another day. The frozen loaves will be good for 1-2 months in your freezer.

Can I freeze the dough?

I can’t recommend it because I haven’t tried freezing the dough. You have to remember, commercial bread companies have preservatives to freeze the dough.

Can I make French Bread Pizza with one of these loaves?

Absolutely, slice a loaf after baking it lengthwise. Scoop some pizza sauce on the halves, top with slices of pepperoni, chopped onions, sliced olives, green onions, and chopped tomatoes. Bake at (400°F) = (204°C) degrees until the cheese is melted.

How do I reheat my French Bread?

Preheat your oven to (350°F)= (176°C) Wrap the bread tightly in foil and bake for about 15 minutes.

Do I need a Baguette or French bread pan?

No, I used a cookie sheet for years. You do not need a special pan to make this recipe.

Final Word

I hope you try making my French Bread in one hour! There really isn’t anything like fresh-baked bread right from the oven. My kids still tell me how much they loved coming home from school to fresh bread smothered with butter and jam, yummy. Please let me know how making this recipe went, I love to hear from you. It’s all about cooking from scratch and teaching our kids and grandkids this critical skill. May God Bless this world, Linda

24 thoughts on “French Bread In One Hour

  • January 19, 2022 at 7:21 am
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    5 stars
    Linda, thanks for this recipe. I’ve been wanting to make some french bread for ages but all the recipes I’ve found are a night mare. question: Can I use regular flour or high altitude flour instead of bread flour for this recipe. Thanks, Pam

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 8:10 am
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      Hi Pam, thank you for the 5 stars, my friend! I used to live in Logan, Utah (4,534′) and the elevation was high. Back then I just used whatever white flour was on sale. Now, I only stock bread flour because I learned about it when I taught bread-making classes. Have fun, I’m working on an artisan bread right now. Linda

      Reply
      • January 19, 2022 at 8:30 am
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        Thanks for the info. I’m at nearly 9,000 ft., so baking is sometimes a challenge as you probably know. Today is cold and dreary so just might be a good bread baking day. Excited about your artisan recipe. I’ve got one I bake in one of my cast iron skillets but not all that crazy about it.

        Reply
        • January 19, 2022 at 9:16 am
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          Hi Pam, I just ordered this pan because I love kitchen stuff, LOL! I will work on the artisan bread this weekend, hopefully. I have never lived at 9000 ft. Wow! I bet that’s a challenge. Linda

          Reply
          • January 21, 2022 at 8:23 am
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            Linda, sorry, but I’ve thought of two more questions before I make this. 1. How hot should be water be. 2. Can this be made as one large loaf. Thanks, Pam

          • January 21, 2022 at 9:19 am
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            Hi Pam, I would cut the recipe in half before making one large loaf. I’m not sure it would cook all the way through???? I use my microwave to boil the water, not sure it’s even a real boil. I just need it hot, not boiling to help the bread rise faster. Linda

    • January 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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      This recipe is wonderful! Its quick and delicious! We made sandwiches with it! Certainly one I will have to write in my recipe binder! Thanks!!

      Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 8:52 am
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    5 stars
    Oh my Linda! I will have to give this a try. I’ve made all of your bread and roll recipes and they are so good. They make me look like a professional. Thank you!

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 9:12 am
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      Hi Paula, thank you for the 5 stars, my friend! I love love love making bread. Life is so good with bread baking in the oven! Linda

      Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 9:17 am
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    This looks so good. Tomorrow night is soup night so I’ll have to give it a try. Any suggestions or tips if we don’t have the baguette pan? Should I just roll it and set it to rise on a cookie sheet? Thanks!

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 9:26 am
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      Hi Steff, it works great on a cookie sheet! I baked two loaves on a greased cookie sheet for years, it works! Linda

      Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 3:07 pm
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    5 stars
    This sounds yummy. I need to find out what my husband did with my bread machine. It’s not a bosh but it works really well. I miss my homemade bread.

    Thanks for the recipe and I consider it more than 5 stars.

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 7:01 pm
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      Hi Jackie, thank you for the 5 stars, my sweet friend! I love making homemade bread! I just bought a bread machine (Zojirushi bread maker) a reader mentioned she loved hers, so I will be experimenting very soon with mine. I will not bake it in the machine but I will mix and knead it. I can’t wait. Linda

      Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 3:09 pm
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    5 stars
    Linda:

    This is a keeper and I would rate it much more than 5 stars lots more. I can’t wait to get my bread machine back. I love fresh made bread.

    Looking for more recipes for bread from you

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 7:02 pm
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      Hi Jackie, thank you for the 5 stars, my sweet friend! I am going to be sharing more and more bread recipes to help people get the confidence to make bread anytime they want to! Linda

      Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 3:27 pm
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    5 stars
    I had a friend tell me a bread making progress like this and when I see your recipe I thought I’d give it a whirl. I baked the loaves in bread pans, but only because i was looking for sandwich bread. My new year’s resolution is to not buy bread this year….so far so good. These look absolutely beautiful. And smell delicious. They’re cooling for now.

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 6:58 pm
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      Hi Jerilea, thank you for the 5 stars! What I love about this recipe is we don’t need eggs, that’s a win-win if a disaster hits. Or if I’m out of eggs! Either way, it’s good! I’m so glad you tried making it. Linda

      Reply
      • January 25, 2022 at 9:08 am
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        5 stars
        Since you posted this I’ve made it three times. My family really loves this bread recipe and it is very easy. My family loves any and all homemade bread, but I’ve been asked to continue making this particular recipe. My husband this morning said he’s been eating a couple of slices with his eggs for breakfast and really likes it. It holds up well for sandwiches too, or just plain buttered with a sprinkle of salt.

        Reply
        • January 25, 2022 at 2:51 pm
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          Hi Jerilea, oh thank you for the 5 stars, my friend! I love love love hearing your family loves this recipe! It’s so fun to make and so good!! I love any homemade bread as you do!! Life is so good! Linda

          Reply
  • January 19, 2022 at 4:37 pm
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    The French call day old bread “pain perdu – lost bread.” They would make it French toast, drop it into mixed eggs, fry it up and eat with breakfast, powdered sugar, maple syrup or honey.

    Reply
    • January 19, 2022 at 6:56 pm
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      HI Dave, oh, that sounds delicious! I love making French Toast! Linda

      Reply
  • January 24, 2022 at 2:40 am
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    Linda, thank you for this recipe! What a great idea for having French bread at the last minute!! You’re a genius!
    I love that your daughters used to sell it; sad that those days are gone now.

    Reply
    • January 24, 2022 at 7:20 am
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      Hi Janet, thank you for your kind words, my friend!!! I love the memories, but feel bad my grandkids can’t have that experience. They sold Cream Puffs and wrapping paper, oh how I loved the look in their eyes when someone could use what they were selling. Life is so good! Linda

      Reply

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