Artisan Baguette


Artisan baguette made at home!So a few weeks ago behind the scenes in the food blogging world, I heard about a cookbook swap. Since what I need in life is to swap my cookbooks rather than perform a general downsizing (joking…I have way more cookbooks than I have space. It’s a modern-day tragedy), I joined the fun. So basically, I was assigned a food blogger, Camilla from Culinary Adventures with Camilla. I visited her blog and got a feel for what she might like, and I sent her one of my cookbooks that was collecting dust (Alex Guarnaschelli’s Old School Comfort Foodthat, to me at least, was neither old-school nor comfort food and definitely more adventurous than how I usually cook, haha.) and then another blogger did the same for me. I love mail and I love cookbooks, so this was pretty much a recipe for excitement.

I was so excited to get my book from the lovely Lauren at Healthy. Delicious. The book she chose for me was The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day


which is the perfect way for me to get my fancy bread fix while maintaining my rock and roll rural Louisiana lifestyle.

This book is amazing–it has all sorts of master recipes that come together in just a few minutes, you store the dough in your fridge, then you cut off what you need to make individual loaves when you’re ready. All those fabulous crusty breads that you get at your favorite bakery? Bam. The dough is in your fridge, ready to go.

Lauren recommended the baguette, so being strongly prone to suggestion, I took her up on it. It was an excellent choice.

In terms of equipment, you’re going to need a sharp knife, a pizza stone, a pizza paddle, a metal baking pan (I used a 9″ cake pan that I don’t have particularly strong feelings toward), a kitchen scale (not totally necessary, but it will come in handy) and some flour or parchment paper.

baguette equpiment

To make the dough, you’re going to need 3 cups of warm (about 100-105 degrees F) water, granulated yeast, kosher salt, and all-purpose flour. And if you’re not going to weigh it, you’re going to go against everything I’ve ever told you to do and scoop it out of the container and level it with a knife. That’s right. We’re rebels. It feels good, I’m not gonna lie.

Place the water in a 6-quart lidded bowl or container. Add the yeast and salt and stir to combine. Add the flour all at once and stir

flour and water

to combine. You’ll probably need to mix it with your hands at some point. Mix until the dough is uniformly moist.

baguette dough

This step should take about 5 minutes from start to finish.

Cover with the lid, but don’t seal it completely, just leave it cracked. Let it rise for about 2 hours at room temperature or until it begins to collapse.

baguette dough risen

You can either use the dough now or refrigerate it for up to 2 weeks.

When you’re ready to bake your bread, sprinkle a pizza peel lightly with flour

sprinkling peel with flour

(this will be where the dough rests)

floured pizza peel

and sprinkle the dough lightly with a little all-purpose flour. You can also line the pizza peel with parchment paper  (instead of flouring it) if you prefer.

Gently pull up a large handful of dough (1/2 pound), about the size of a large orange.

orange-sized ball of dough

Gently pull it down on the bottom to form a ball, coating the ball with the flour that you sprinkled on top before you cut it. Don’t knead the flour into the dough–most of it will fall away.

Shape the dough into a cylinder that’s about 1 1/2″ in diameter. You can roll it gently if you want, just be careful not to push so hard that all the bubbles come out of the dough. Work with the dough–if it’s fighting you, let it rest for 5-10 minutes and then try again. Taper the ends so they’re kind of pointy on both sides.

baguette dough

Place it on the floured pizza peel (or the parchment paper) and allow it to rest for 20 minutes.

baguette dough

Place a pizza stone on the center rack of your oven and place a small metal pan next to or under the pizza stone.

pans in oven

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. When the loaf has rested for 20 minutes, use a pastry brush to brush it with water,

water and baguette

brushing water on baguette

then make a few diagonal slashes across the top of the loaf with a sharp knife.

baguette with slashes

Use the pizza peel to carry the loaf to the oven, then jiggle the pizza peel to slide the loaf onto the pizza stone. Pour 1 cup of hot water into the empty metal pan and quickly close the door. Bake for 25 minutes or until deeply golden brown. Remove from oven and serve.

Artisan French Baguette from Our Best Bites--recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. The dough takes 5 minutes then stays in your fridge until you're ready to bake it!

This recipe will make several baguettes (or other free-form loaves–the instructions are available in the book).

Thank you so much, Lauren, for picking this book for me and to Alyssa of and Faith of for hosting the Food Blogger Cookbook Swap. I sent a cookbook to a food blogger and received this cookbook in return! Here’s a list of all the other participating food bloggers:

A Baker’s House
An Edible Mosaic
avocado bravado
Blue Kale Road
Blueberries And Blessings
Cheap Recipe Blog
Confessions of a Culinary Diva
Create Amazing Meals
Cucina Kristina
Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Cupcake Project
Dinner is Served 1972
Done With Corn
Eats Well With Others
Everyday Maven
Flour Me With Love 
From My Sweet Heart 
Great Food 360° 
Healthy. Delicious. 
I’m Gonna Cook That! 
Je Mange la Ville 
Karen’s Kitchen Stories 
Kitchen Treaty 
Olive and Herb
OnTheMove-In The Galley 
Paleo Gone Sassy
poet in the pantry 
Rhubarb and Honey 
Rocky Mountain Cooking
Shikha la mode 
Shockingly Delicious
Sifting Focus 
Spoonful of Flavor 
Tara’s Multicultural Table 
The Not So Exciting Adventures of a Dabbler 
The Suburban Soapbox 
The Whole Family’s Food 



woman in denim shirt holding a salad bowl
Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. You are not going to believe this…. I went to make bread this morning and my cookbook is GONE!!! Seriously I have checked EVERY SINGLE BOOKCASE in our house and it has vanished… or so I thought until I started asking questions. Well it would appear that my family thought the shopping bag filled with books and a couple of shopping bags was for Goodwill. and they knew that I have been working hard to keep the clutter down. yes you see where this is going…. they DONATED them! One issue of Folk magazine, two issues of Souvenir, Five minute Artisan Bread, my sketch/idea notebook, a couple of watercolor cards, colored pencils, and my 2 favorite shopping bags (3 including the one it was all in). I almost cried…. okay so maybe I did shed some tears in private. You would be so proud of me… I did not let them know how greatly it saddened me. They really thought they were doing a good thing… and when a teenage boy takes the initiative to help out with ZERO prompting.. well who am I to fuss. (yes I am in the process of making myself a couple of new bags… and saving up to replace the magazines/cookbook.)

  2. I have the original book and LOVE it! If you don’t have a pizza peel, I use a cookie sheet that doesn’t have sides and sprinkle it with flour or cornmeal (depending on the recipe). It works great! Thanks for the reminder that I need to make another batch of dough.

  3. I made this dough yesterday and baked it today. It was amazing. I even forgot to pull out my pizza stone before I heated my oven and so I just baked it on a cookie sheet with a Silpat and it was still perfect.

  4. That’s a great looking baguette! I love that book and always have a tub of dough at the ready. Kiddo and I usually have pizza once a week from it. Hope u enjoy the rest of the recipes as well.

  5. I have this book and it is fantastic! Your baguette looks perfect – so crusty on the outside. Thanks so much for participating and helping us make the swap a success!

  6. I agree, this book is life changing. We sent the pretzels rolled in cinnamon and sugar for my son’s birthday snack at school. It was a HUGE hit!

    1. I wouldn’t use, like, that instant pizza yeast, but any other yeast should be fine! 🙂

  7. I need to check out that book! Thank you so much for the baguette play-by-play. I’ll definitely be trying this recipe soon!

  8. Such a great looking baguette! I love making bread and have no idea why I haven’t gotten this or the original yet. Going right on the amazon wishlist.

  9. These are some of my favorite recipes. Our family loves to roll it out just a bit and add some toppings. We put in: olive oil, sun dried tomatoes, basil, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Roll it up and let it rise .

  10. Thank you so much for participating in the swap and helping to make it a success! I love the Artisan Bread books, but I haven’t tried the baguette. Your baguette looks amazing!!

  11. I have the original book and I love it. I’ve been making bread in the fly for years and never been happier. I tell anyone who will listen about how great this book is!!!

  12. This is one of the many cookbooks that I’ve seen on the swap today that I’d LOVE to have in my kitchen. Your bread turned out so well, hope you enjoy the rest of the recipes in the book.

  13. I LOOOOVE this book. I have never before (or so many times) described a COOKbook as “life changing”. Best ever.

  14. Their brioche recipe makes amazing cinnamon rolls. I almost always have dough in the fridge for making pita–from cold oven to fresh bread in less than 10 minutes–I use the 5 minute sheet pan preheat and non-stick foil, the parchment tends to get brittle at 500 degrees for pita.

  15. The original version of this book is my most loved cookbooks! its pages have chocolate smudges and oil stains, the binding falls open to our favorite recipes, and it just plain smells heavenly! Enjoy! (does the new version carry some of the sweet breads such as chocolate brioche? heavenly!!!)

  16. I love this book, too, and got my sister hooked on all breadmaking through it. Great book for beginners, but the results will still satisfy bread loving connoisseurs. 🙂

  17. I had to chuckle when I saw this today (breads like this are my weakness) right after the post about getting in shape yesterday. Talk about torture! I loved the exercise blog and wish I lived 3 minutes from a gym, let alone one that costs $8 a month. I know….all things in moderation 😉
    Thanks for the great blog posts!

  18. I gave this cookbook to my husband a couple years ago for Christmas (the gift that keeps on giving) and lately we use it to make amazing pizza.

    What a fun idea for a swap.

  19. I’ve been using this bread book for a while now and I love it! I have some of this dough in my frig right now!

  20. Gorgeous photos! Really, is there anything better in this world than freshly baked bread? I’ve heard great things about this cookbook, thanks for sharing. It’s been so fun visiting all the blogs through the swap. 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Rose! And I totally agree. Freshly baked bread is my ultimate weakness. 🙂

  21. This is an awesome concept in how to make bread. It makes store-bought bread fairly unappealing. I have all their cookbooks. (I also have the First World problem of where to store all my cookbooks.) I have both of yours, too. 🙂

  22. I have been looking for a recipe like this for months! YAY!!! I have also been coveting that recipe book, I just already have a pile of books I don’t use anymore…maybe I should get rid of those and get this one! Thanks!

  23. I. LOVE. THAT. BOOK!!!!!!! I also have the “healthy” version that I am anxious to put to work and would LOVE to have “The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking” ( since I don’t have the original- I swipe it from the library and LOVE it as long as they’ll let me………………..

  24. Yay I’m so glad you like the book! Your baguette looks beautiful!

    1. Thank you so much! I’m so excited to put the rest of the book to good use!

  25. I have the original version of the book and I LOVE it! I almost always have dough in my fridge. I love the variety in the book too…baguettes, sandwich bread, pizza, pitas.
    For anyone who is interested in this recipe but doesn’t have a pizza stone (like me), I just use a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.

  26. I love artisan bread and my mom, my sisters, and my aunts have been making it for years, but their recipe is a 24-hour recipe where you have to do things at very specific times. With our family schedule I never know if I’m going to be able to do a specific thing in exactly 6 hours, 2 hours after that, 5 hours after that and again an hour later, and 10 hours after that so I’ve never tried it. Mix for 5 minutes, rise for at least 2 hours, keep in the fridge up to 2 weeks is way more up my busy mom alley!