Loaf pan breads work beautifully with my method

People think of artisan-style loaves as being free-form, but my high-moisture, stored-dough method also works beautifully in loaf pans. Read on to hear more about getting great results with traditional un-coated loaf pans.

In the books, I’ve tended to be on the careful side about loaf pans.  Since this dough is so wet, I recommended non-stick pans and even so, to grease them well.  Yet a very heavyweight aluminum pan works beautifully too– all you have to do is grease it well (I like olive oil even for American-style breads but you can use any liquid or solid shortening you like):

… and be sure the formed dough is well dusted with flour before putting it into the pan— it shouldn’t feel all sticky as it goes in.  If it does stick a bit, just let it sit for 10 minutes after taking it out of the oven and it will “steam” itself out.  I love this pan, and when I say it’s heavyweight, I mean it.  The pan weighs a full pound…

This was a big loaf 2 pounds, 5 ounces of dough, using my Master Recipe. Loaves this large need to rest for 90 minutes after shaping, and they tend to need extra time in the oven.  For this size, a lean dough needs 45 to 60 minutes at 450 degrees F, and enriched doughs will need about an hour at 350.  Or more. If you’re finding that there’s over-browning or scorching in your oven at this temp, try again 25 degrees lower (Fahrenheit) and increase the bake-time by 10 or 15%.  Go by the loaf color and the firmness of the crust:

A reader recently asked about REALLY big loaves, in a 16-inch long pan (but still 4 inches by 4 inches h*w), in a pan like this one. That’ll work too, but you need a lot of dough: 54 ounces / 1530 grams, almost a full batch of my Master recipe. Have a great fall, and follow on Twitter, and on Facebook too… 

Red Star Yeast (Lesaffre Corp) sponsored this post, and supplied yeast for recipe testing.

Note: BreadIn5.com is reader supported. When you buy through links on the site, BreadIn5 LLC earns commissions.

784 thoughts to “Loaf pan breads work beautifully with my method”

  1. I have made a couple of your bread recipes, and my family loves every one of them. I have been wanting to make the cinnamon raisin bread so I think that’s going to be my next adventure after reading this post!

  2. I just made 14 baguettes to donate to our school fundraiser, and a double batch of the granola…all from your first book. Love ya!

  3. I haven’t had home backed bread since leaving home 50+ yeaes ago. It would be fun to give it a try. Winning the gift package would be great to get started.

  4. That’s great news that the dough works with loaf pans. Just ordered the healthy bread book. Please enter me in the drawing.

  5. I would love to enter the drawing. In addition, thank you so much for including gluten free breads here and in the new book. I had fallen in love with the 5 minute method before discovering my gluten intolerance. I despaired ever being able to make bread so easily again…and then you guys came to the rescue! And I have loved Red Star ever since I worked at a bakery while in college! I’ve always gotten consistent results from those guys as well.

  6. That looks like a great book that I might just have to buy The dough whisk is interesting… Would like to try it!

  7. Love making your breads, except I need to slow down due to weight gain! My son is now making his own pizza almost everyday. I think it’s time to show him how to make the dough also because I can’t keep up with him. I’ve gotten others into your method, thank you so much.

  8. Love the bread and this website. I tell everyone about your books and my new fun hobby! I can not believe I use to make bread the hard way!

  9. Decided to look up artisan bread and your blog came up. You have some wonderful recipes that i am going to try for my family. I was just looking at bread loaf pans to buy.

  10. I make cinnamon raisin on your ww brioche at least once a week. Everybody loves it.
    Awesome advertising for your books.

  11. I have always wanted to master bread making so this is a great way to start out with your book and maybe more!!

  12. I have a yeast question actually – can you use metal spoons or containers with the yeast / bread dough? I can’t find anything in the book but I know that if you’re making friendship you aren’t supposed to let it touch anything metal.

    1. Hi Christie,

      I have never heard that before? It is okay to use stainless steel, but you don’t want to use a metal that will have a reaction to the alcohol that is produced by the yeasts. I have made our bread in a stainless pot and had absolutely no issues at all.

      Thanks, Zoë

  13. The danish whisk is great and easy to clean after using. I didn’t know it was offered on Amazon or I would have gotten mine sooner for the price is much more reasonable than where I got mine. One question, what do you mean by lean dough? For the loaf Artisan bread.

  14. I have my first loaf in the oven from the master recipe as I write! Looking forward to the next four loaves….I hope they all turn out.

  15. I’m curious if anyone has had any luck using a stoneware loaf pan? I have a pampered chef one that I’m thinking about using but I see you mention “non-stick” as preferred. And might it would for other breads too?
    Thank you, love ABin5, I used to be afraid of yeast, not anymore – have gotten several friends hooked too 🙂

  16. I bought ABin5 and it is a Godsend! Coconut flour has recently been touted as being “healthy.” I want to try it. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Kathy,

      The coconut flour has no gluten so it can’t replace much of the all-purpose flour. You can take out a 1/4 cup of AP and replace it with 1/2 cup of the coconut and see if that produces a nice dough. If that works well for you, try a little more the next time.

      Thanks, Zoë

  17. Recently I was told by my dentist that I should not be eating my crusty breads. *sigh*. (Actually I was having a lot of trouble eating the crusty breads so it wasn’t a surprise he told me to stop, LOL) I’ve been experimenting a little with your recipes by putting into a pan and baking a little lower temp. I am still having a bit of problem chewing those. I have good success with the Raisin Bread however. Do you have a suggestion concerning getting a good texture but NOT a crispy crust with the basic wheat and rye breads without the addition of milk?? I do get an acceptable bread with milk, but I really prefer wheat and rye bread without milk. BTW…That raisin bread recipe is great for Turkey Sandwiches believe it or not! I also found that using my boiled cider syrup (from KA Flour) is a great substitute for the egg wash that is spread on the rectangular dough, then rolled up. It seems to “stick” the layers/rounds together without the need for using a beat up egg.

  18. Specifically about the Swiss Muesli Bk-fast bread in AB in 5 – when i added the wet muesli, it was basically a slurry. So the dough became a thick batter. Had to keep adding flour (approx 1.5 c total) to handle it. Ended up much like a batter bread in texture, still tasted yummy. Should i have poured off the excess milk before adding the muesli? or did i do something else wrong?

    1. Hi Julie,

      What kind of Muesli are you using? When we have made this the muesli is much thicker than you are describing. It sounds like perhaps yours isn’t absorbing the milk as much, so you may need to pour off the excess liquid.

      Thanks, Zoë

  19. Thanks, Zoe. I think it’s Bob’s Red Mill (bought in bulk at the Food Co-op). Next time I have brioche dough, i’ll try again with drained muesli. It really IS a tasty bread! 🙂

  20. Regarding loaf pans–I often bake my favorite recipes (Ten Grain, Dill Rye, Pumpernickel) from the Artisan book in pans for sandwiches. But I wonder if you have ever baked your breads in a pain de mie (pullman) pan? Would any of your wholegrain recipes bake successfully this way? (Not that I need another pan, but I’m tempted.) Thanks for your splendid books & advice!

    1. Zorra: Funny you ask, we kept wondering whether one of us should buy one of those and test it, but it didn’t seem to come up much among readers.

      But I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. If you’re successful, please let us know over here. May sure to bake it fully, this is a big loaf– see my post on big loaves at https://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=2267 Jeff

  21. My dough for the last two batches has been really wet and wont form well/come together. My bread ends up all being flat bread. I have made dozens of batches before that, and they haven’t been wet like this. We moved and have a new fridge. Everything else is the same

    1. Erin: How about bleached flour, any chance you’re using it in place of unbleached? Other than that, have you checked through the suggestions in the FAQs page?

      In order to help you better, we’ll need to know which recipes, from which book(s) of ours (page numbers) are you using? Jeff

  22. First I made the master recipe, and then i made the peasant bread. Still tastes good but gooey gooey mess

    1. Hi Erin,

      What brand of flour are you using? Are you making the master from ABin5 or HBin5?

      Do you use an oven thermometer?

      We’ll need more detail to help you better.

      Thanks, Zoë

  23. Hey Zoe:

    I am an AB5 loyalist. Will eventually check out HB5, but AB5 is doing it for me. I don’t currently have an oven thermometer, but it hasn’t been an issue in our old oven. Still, the issue is that the dough is going all gooey before i get it in the oven. I’m using unbleached flour. I made beautiful loaves (https://www.flickr.com/photos/faerygrrrl/5434596801/) before, it’s just these last two batches that have turned out gooey and messy and disappointing.

    1. Hi Erin,

      That loaf is gorgeous! Has the weather changed at all since you baked it? If there is a lot more moisture in the air it may effect the flour, making your dough too wet. It may be that you just measured the flour differently in this batch and it is a bit wetter. The last thought is that if the air temperature is hotter than the first time you baked the loaf may be getting over proofed and spreading out too much.

      Do any of those reasons sound possible?

      Thanks, Zoë

  24. Hi Zoe:

    Thanks for the compliment! I have been so proud of my loaves, esp since I’d been afraid to try making bread for about a decade! It’s quite the opposite. The weather has gotten cooler and dryer, as we move away from hot summer into autumn. I’ve always done the scoop and sweep (like my ma taught me as a girl) Maybe I should just increase the flour slightly?

    When you say proofed, do you mean in the initial stage? Because i’d been having a hard time getting this to even form into a ball. Mostly i just end up with a blob…..2 batches in a row. Planning on throwing together another batch tonight, to see…but nervous

  25. All my loaf pans are glass. I take it they will not work? I have considered a cast iron lodge loaf pan as a replacement. Any thoughts?

    1. Glass loaf pans are fine, just don’t use glass to catch water for steam-creation (they will shatter if you do).

  26. Thanks, Jeff. Nice to be able to use what I have. I may skip the steam. The artisan crust doesn’t sound like it goes well with Vascular, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. I had some problems with my jaw not too long ago and soft crusts really sound appealing.

  27. I made your Healthy Artissian Bread and the Brioche Bread and so far it has all worked to plan. I have been sick and unable to follow thru wihth any time consureming labor intensive tasks, and with a little hrelp I have made the dough and will try a loaf tomorrow with some soup for dinner, And may make some as christmas gifts.

  28. I am so frustrated with the shape of my loaves. When I bake on parchment and a heavy duty sheet pan, my loaves look like fling saucers with a raised wider diameter slightly above the bottom. This happens to me every time (but not on clay). I have to use the sheet pans for large batches. Then today I tried the loaf pans with slashing the top. I ended up with what looked like a race car from the side view. In the post: “Loaf pan breads work beautifully with our method– giveaway of baking equipment from Red Star Yeast (GIVEAWAY CLOSED, see winners on 10/12 post)” the loaves weren’t slashed at all and the bread was perfectly even lengthwise. Help me make pretty loaves, please. Thank you.

    1. Hi Pat,

      Which recipe are you using? Let me know which book and I can try to help you. Does your dough seem wetter than ours? Have you seen any of our videos, to compare your dough?

      Thanks, Zoë

  29. I made a batch of Bavarian Style Whole Grain Pumpernickel Bread. I do not have a banneton. I have decided to use 1 1/2 of dough in a small dark non stick loaf pan. What temperature and how long do I bake the loaf?

    1. Same temp, maybe (and I do say maybe) a 15% increase in baking time. Usually a good idea to check oven temp with something like https://ow.ly/8CVPU Trick is to get it to bake through before burning the outside. Can always turn down the temp and increase time, but that wouldn’t be my first choice.

  30. What should I expect if I bake the Master Recipe in a loaf pan without using the steam method. Will the top crust be too soft?

  31. My brother-in-law gave me this book for Christmas and I’ve already made 2 boules and 1 couronne! My favorite part was listening to the bread pop! C’est super!

  32. For baking in a loaf pan, do you slash? Do you still use steam? If I wanted a softer top crust, could I brush with olive oil and skip the steam? These are general questions, but right now I am working with Olive Oil bread from book 2. Thanks!

    1. Slashing isn’t an absolute requirement here because the pan prevents crazy spreading. Yes to the fat if you want a soft top.

  33. I have had the hardest time finding the pan size you recommend. 9x4x3. All I can find is 9×5 or 8×4. I use the 9×5 pans now but a recipe that should make three loaves 1.5 lb (like the whole wheat) I’m stuck making two 2 lb loaves if I want any height. Any suggestions? Would it just be best to do the 8×4?

  34. A friend bought a bread pan for me that works AMAZINGLY with wet dough! It is from USA Pan, and it is non-stick because it has a silicone coating on it. I still grease the pan the way I would a non-stick pan and the loaf just slides right out after baking. No worries about sticking at all! When I bake a loaf with steam, the crust is beautifully crisp, top and bottom. I use the small size loaf pan which costs $18.99 currently. You can buy them online from the manufacturer and also on Amazon.

    I’m currently experimenting with using your recipes with other flours (today it is half spelt, half all-purpose) and using a loaf pan. What an incredibly versatile recipe and technique for bread making! Thank you!

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