• Prep 15 mins
  • Total 3 hours
  • Medium
  • Serves 4

Crusty Bread Recipe

There is just something about biting into a piece of homemade crusty bread. The crunch of the outside gives way to a soft, chewy middle to create the perfect bite. For many people, a meal isn’t complete unless bread is served with it. But to make the perfect loaf, you need a crusty bread recipe.

Luckily, you’ve found an easy crusty bread recipe that will allow you to serve the perfect loaf. Whether you make cheese bread, rustic bread or use a crusty French bread recipe, it will add something special to your meal.

What is Crusty Bread?

Crusty bread has a hard crust on top of the loaf. The middle consists of chewy goodness, and the combination of the two is why people are crazy about crusty bread. When you buy bread in  the store, it is full of additives and it can be difficult to find bread with that delicious crust. But when you make it at home, you can create the perfect crust and eat it as soon as it cools. 

5 Ways to Serve Homemade Crusty Bread

You can use this crunchy bread recipe and slather it with butter to eat by itself, or you can use the bread as part of a meal. Here are some options for your homemade bread.

Side Dish

Whether you make pasta or meat and vegetables, serving it with a loaf of crusty bread makes the meal more satisfying. To add an extra layer of yum, set a bowl of crusty bread on the table and watch diners dig in.


Is it any wonder that so many people believe that bruschetta is the perfect way to start a meal? When you add creamy mozzarella, freshly picked basil and Campari tomatoes to a base of crusty bread, you get culinary heaven.


You probably make sandwiches with store-bought bread, but if you have the choice of using homemade crusty bread, it’s a no-brainer. Add your favorite cheese, meat and condiments to create a sandwich that speaks to your taste buds.


Adding croutons to a salad makes it more interesting because the croutons add another texture to the mix. While store-bought croutons can add texture, they usually lack in flavor. But if you start with crusty bread and make your own croutons, you will benefit from both texture and flavor.

French Onion Soup

When cooking a pot of French onion soup, the smells travel throughout your home and speak of the deliciousness to come. But when you add the fragrance of freshly baked bread to the mix, you have what many consider to be the perfect meal. And crusty bread is the ideal accompaniment to French onion soup.

Tips for Making French Crusty Bread

When making French crusty bread, you may have more dough than you need to use right away. You can store it in the refrigerator to use within three days by following steps six through nine below.

If you’re wondering the proper way to store homemade crusty bread, it’s recommended to seal it in a plastic bag. Doing this ensures that mold will not grow on the bread. You can store it this  way on the counter for 3-4 days. You can extend its life by storing it in the fridge for up to a week.


Q: Is crusty bread originally Italian or French?
A: Crusty bread originated in France. The French use a wheat that is harder than Italian wheat. Also, French bread does not contain oils like Italian bread does, making it more crusty. 

Q: What’s the best way to reheat crusty bread?
A: To keep your bread crusty, you should heat it in the proper way. Start by letting the bread come to room temperature. Then put it in an oven set to 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes. 

Q: What’s the best way to cut into a crusty bread loaf?
A: To cut crusty bread, you should use a serrated knife. Wait until it cools, and then cut into the bread at a 45-degree angle to ensure the knife does not slip out of your hand while cutting it. 

Q: Why is homemade crusty bread better than store bought?

If you’ve noticed that recipes always taste better when they’re homemade, there’s a reason for it! Homemade bread is fresh, free from preservatives or artificial flavors, and made with personalized care. You also opt for organic ingredients to ensure your homemade crusty bread is as clean and wholesome as can be!

Q: How long does homemade bread last?
A: Homemade bread lasts 3-4 days when it’s kept at room temperature. If you put it in the refrigerator, it should last up to a week. Wherever you store it, be sure to keep it in a sealed bag to ensure that mold does not grow on it. 

Q: How can I keep homemade bread from drying out?
A: If you wrap your bread in cloth, plastic, or foil, it will help retain moisture. But keep in mind that with crusty bread, the more moisture the bread has, the less of a crust it will retain. 

Q: What makes crusty bread so good?
A: Crusty bread is loved by many because it has the perfect combination of a chewy middle surrounded by a crust. The crust adds texture to the bread that makes it irresistible to many. 

How to Make Crusty Bread

Are you ready to learn how to make crusty bread? Here’s the simple crusty bread recipe you’ve been looking for.


  • Contains Wheat

Tip: Allergy Advice

This dish contains the following allergens: Wheat

Cooking mode

Step-by-step instruction without your screen going to sleep

  • 4 leveled cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 3/4 cups water, lukewarm, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  • Parchment Paper
  • Large Bowl
  • Whisk
  • Stand Mixer
  • Step 1

    In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl, combine 3 1/2 cups flour, yeast, 1 1/2 cup lukewarm water, salt, and olive oil. Knead until a smooth, sticky dough forms. If necessary, add extra flour 1/2 tablespoon at a time. Remove dough from bowl and knead by hand until dough becomes less sticky.

  • Step 2

    Cut dough into 2 equal sized portions. Reserve 1 dough ball for the recipe. Place the remaining ball in a sealed container with headspace and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

  • Step 3

    Line the Cook & Crisp Basket with a nonstick silicone baking mat (or parchment paper), and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer dough to basket.

  • Step 4

    Place the basket in the pot. Close the lid, then move the slider to AIR FRY/STOVE STOP.

  • Step 5

    Select PROOF, set temperature to 95°F, and set time to 50 minutes. Press START/STOP to begin the first rise. When the rise is complete, remove the basket.

  • Step 6

    Add remaining 1/4 cup water to the pot. Deflate the dough by gently pressing on it, then reshape it into a ball. Transfer the dough to the basket, then place the basket in the pot. Close the lid.

  • Step 7

    Select PROOF, set temp to 95°F, and set time to 50 minutes. Press START/STOP to begin the second rise. After 30 minutes, check the dough to make sure it has doubled in size. If it has not doubled in size, close the lid and continue proofing for the remaining 20 minutes. Once complete, close the lid and move slider to STEAMCRISP.

  • Step 8

    Select STEAM & CRISP, set temperature to 350°F, and set time to 20 minutes. Press START/STOP to begin cooking (PRE will display for approx. 5 minutes as the unit steams, then the timer will start counting down).

  • Step 9

    When cooking is complete, the surface of the bread will be crusty and brown. Carefully remove the basket from the pot. Allow the bread to cool on a rack for about 30 minutes before serving.

    TIP: To cook the extra dough, remove from the refrigerator and follow steps 6–9.