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How to Make White Bread: A Beginner’s Guide

This recipe may just be the best thing since sliced bread – literally. With a golden-brown crust and a light, airy crumb, this simple white bread is not only delicious, it’s so easy to make! Using only 5 ingredients, it’s perfect for new bakers looking for a tasty recipe to start their bread baking journey.

Learn how to make this Simple White Bread recipe by watching the step-by-step tutorial video, review Gesine Prado’s tips, and get a full printable recipe below.

Simple White Bread Video Tutorial:

Gesine’s Guide to Making Simple White Bread:

Gesine Prado is sharing her Simple White Bread recipe. With only 5 ingredients (flour, water, sugar, salt and Platinum Yeast) and a little hands-on time for kneading and shaping, your kitchen will be filled with the aroma of freshly baked bread in no time!

Start by simply mixing all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

Platinum Yeast enhances the strength of the dough, giving you a beautiful rise every time. It’s better baking make easy!

TIP: Add extra flavor to your bread by using a flavored oil such as almond oil in place of olive oil.

This recipe uses the hand kneading method – no stand mixer needed! (However, if you prefer to use a stand mixer, instructions are provide in the recipe notes section below.)

After mixing, it’s time to knead the dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.

TIP: After turning dough out onto the counter, if the dough is sticking to your fingers, simply take some bench flour and do a “dry flour wash” by rubbing your hands together with the flour over a bowl or your garbage can. This prevents your sink from getting clogged up with dough!

As the dough develops during kneading, you’ll feel the ball of dough getting tighter and stronger and in about 10 minutes, the dough will look shiny and smooth.

Kneading Gesine's simple white bread dough

TIP: While kneading, only add in enough extra flour to keep the dough from sticking to the counter. Adding in too much flour will create a tougher and denser bread.

After kneading, place dough in a well-greased bowl. Cover and let rise until double in size, about 1 hour.

After rising, it’s time to shape the loaves. See pictures below for a shaping step-by-step guide, and watch the full video above for more shaping tips and tricks.

Kneading simple white bread

TIP: Once you shape your loaves and place them in the pans to rise, lightly spray the top of the dough with non-stick cooking spray so the dough doesn’t stick to your plastic wrap as it rises.

Bread dough poke test

TIP: You know your loaves are ready to go into the oven when they pass a poke test. Simply dip your fingertip into some flour and give the top of the loaf a gentle poke. When you remove your finger, you should still be able to see an indent where your finger was. If it stays indented and doesn’t spring back up right away, you are ready to bake!

Simple White Bread for Beginners

Simple White Bread for Beginners
Gesine Prado's simple white bread recipe has only 5 ingredients! With and a little hands-on time for kneading and shaping, your kitchen will be filled with the aroma of freshly baked bread in no time!
Yield 2 (8½x4½-inch) loaves



  • 2 cups (454g) lukewarm water (100°F)
  • 2 tablespoons (25g) extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons (12g) fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon (10g) granulated sugar
  • 5 cups (600g) bread flour
  • 1 (0.25oz) package (7g) or 2 1/4 teaspoons Platinum Yeast


  • In a large mixing bowl, add the water, olive oil, salt and sugar.
  • Add the flour to separate bowl and then the yeast. Stir/whisk to combine. Add to the water mixture.
  • Using a wooden spoon or a Danish dough whisk, stir until most of the flour is absorbed into the dough. Turn the dough over with your hands in the bowl a few times to work in the rest of the flour. The dough will look very shaggy.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Set aside a small bowl of flour (‘bench flour’) to use during kneading as needed.
  • Knead the dough by gently flattening the dough into a rough 8×11-inch rectangle. Grab the top half and fold over, folding the dough in half. Use your palm to push dough forward, "sealing" the dough at the fold seam. Turn the dough 90 degrees and fold, seal and turn again. Knead for 10-12 minutes, or until the dough is shiny and smooth and stays put when shaped into a taut ball. Another way to test if the dough is kneaded enough is to poke it with your index finger, and if the dough springs back it is ready. (See notes for stand mixer directions.)
  • Place the dough into an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to double in size in a warm place, about an hour.
  • Prepare pans: spray two 8½ x 4½-inch bread pans with nonstick spray.
  • Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half (approximate 550g for each half). Press one dough into a rough 8×12-inch rectangle (this also de-gasses the dough). Fold one long side edge over to the middle, repeat with other long edge; pinch seam in middle to seal. Starting at the short edge on the top, gently roll the dough up towards you, pressing down and pushing slightly forward with each turn. Place into prepared pan, seam side down. Repeat with other dough piece. Spray tops of dough with nonstick spray and cover bowl with plastic wrap or a shower cap.
  • Proof loaves until doubled in size and the dough rises to crest or dome slightly above the edge of the loaf pan, about one hour. If an indentation remains after lightly touching the risen loaf, it has risen enough.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Bake at for 30-35 minutes or until the bread is golden brown and the internal temperature of the bread reads 200ºF.
  • While bread is still warm, rub butter over the top of the crust.
  • Remove loaves from pans and let cool on a wire rack.
  • Bread can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week. To freeze bread: wrap completely cooled loaf well in plastic wrap, and then wrap again in foil. Freeze for up to one month.


Stand mixer directions:
  1. Add water, olive oil, salt, and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.
  2. Add the flour and yeast.
  3. Mix on medium-low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, is shiny, and a small piece of dough, stretched thin, does not tear, about 7 to 10 minutes. (Note: If dough is too wet/sticky after the first couple minutes of mixing, add in additional flour – 1 tablespoon at a time – until your dough becomes more cohesive. Be careful not to add in too much flour!)
  4. Continue with step 6.
Recipe was developed using King Arthur bread flour. Adjustments in the amount of flour and kneading/rise times may be needed if using other flour brands.
Recipe by Gesine Prado.

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This dough is perfect for both sweet and savory applications. See how you can take this simple dough recipe to bake up these other delicious favorites.

Gesine Prado

Gesine Prado is a self-taught baker, teacher and author. Visit Gesine’s website for more of her delicious recipes.

Review & Comments

Bessie | Reply

I proofed the dough all together. Can I split it after proofing then add to separate pans for baking?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Bessie – Yes, the first rise can be done in bulk (the entire dough). Then separate into 2 loaves, shape, place into pans and let rise until an indentation remains after lightly touching with your fingertip.
Happy baking!

Jeff Willaford | Reply

5 stars
I made this bread and thought it was extremely good. We froze one loaf and ate the other. When we ate the second loaf about 2 weeks later the texture was not like the fresh loaf and seemed dryer and crumbled easier.

Debra Mettler | Reply

is there only 1 raise in recipe after you shape it

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Debra – Yes, there is one rise after shaping the loaves.
Happy baking!

Sarah | Reply

I was looking at the related recipes (cinnamon knots, pesto bread, braided bread) to use half of the dough from this recipe (which I am about to try for the first time). I noticed that the other three recipes say to use this white bread dough, but when they give the ingredients, they all include 1 TBS sugar, which this white bread recipe does not. Is there a reason for that? As I will be making one batch, 2 loaves and substituting the preparation pesto approach for one of the loaves, I am debating between making both doughs WITH or WITHOUT the sugar. Which would you recommend?


Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Sarah – All the related recipes and the simple white bread use 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar in the dough.
Happy baking!

Earl | Reply

5 stars
What is the nutritional stats on this bread or calories. As I am on a diet with my fitness pal and would really like to know how many calories or a close estimate. I made it and it was great. Better than the bread I made in my bread machine

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Earl – We’re so glad you enjoy the recipe! We don’t have the nutritional information available, however if you google ‘recipe nutrition calculator’ you’ll find websites that you can plug in the ingredients to get the information. Serving size depends on how thick the slices are. Typically 10-12 per loaf.
Happy baking!

KRC | Reply

5 stars
I made this recipe this morning and it is fantastic. I used a whole grain bread flour so I needed to up the water by a bit, but it all turned out fantastic. The video and instruction are spectacular! Thank you!

Judy Garden | Reply

Hi Gesine, Your recipes are always amazing but I have a concern re the measurements of the flour for this bread recipe. I have always used my go to measure of 135g to a cup of flour. Your bread calls for 5 cups or 600g. As a test I again measured flour in a cup. Fluffed the flour, spooned into the cup measure and levelled it off. It weighs 135 g. So as my dough was being kneaded it was super loose, much looser than in your video so I added the extra 75 g of flour and the dough came together beautifully. Still sticky but workable. Also, 2 1/4 tsp of yeast weighs 10.28g. The 7 grams is to me a standard weight for a bread recipe. I’m not sure what the effect would be on the bread if more yeast is put in. I’m making a cinnamon raisin bread with one half of the dough recipe. Should be delish!

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Judy – This recipe was developed using King Arthur bread flour, which is 120 grams per cup. If you are using a different brand or type of flour, we recommend using the weights listed in the recipe and adjust based on the absorption of your flour (go by how the dough comes together during mixing and kneading). For the yeast, one (7gram) packet is approximately 2 1/4 teaspoons. The packet is filled by weight, the measurement is approximate but the standard is 2 1/4 teaspoons per packet.
I hope you will find this information helpful.
Happy baking!

Dorothy | Reply

I have high blood pressure can you make bread without salt ?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Dorothy – For best results, we recommend keeping at least 1 teaspoon of salt because it helps with developing the dough and also regulates the yeast activity.
Happy baking!

John VanDyke | Reply

RE: Simple white bread–> Can you substitute some whole wheat flour? Maximum ratio? Adjustments required?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi John – Gesine recommends to start with swapping out 1/4 of the bread flour for whole wheat flour, adjusting the water accordingly (you’ll need to increase the amount a bit, go by how the dough comes together during mixing and kneading). Then play around with it until you get a whole wheat/bread flour ratio and finished bread that you’re happy with.
Happy baking!

Scott | Reply

Made this bread last night for the 1st time ever making scratch built bread! It turned out exactly as was promised!!!
Love and it’s a Do Over for me!!! Thank you!! It was easy to make.

Dorothy | Reply

5 stars
I have been making bread for years and you have some great ideas that I have never tried. Like adding oil and the way you roll the dough for baking. I find homemade bread really is quite easy to make and so much better than store bought bread. After hand kneading for years I finally got a stand mixer and that makes it even easier. I like to make 3 loafs instead of 2, just like the smaller size.

Zen | Reply

Hi. Can I use instant yeast instead of platinum yeast?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Zen – Yes, substitute 1-for-1. Keep an eye on the dough, rise times may vary.
Happy baking!

Joanne Burns | Reply

5 stars
Thank you for such a great, informative video. Made this bread today and it’s fantastic. Definitely a keeper and one that everyone should try.

Wendy Hampton | Reply

5 stars
OMG! Such an easy to understand straightforward demo! I have an entirely different feeling about the bread dough process. This is really a clear and easy to understand lesson! Thanks so much for posting on the Platinum Yeast newsletter.

Donnalyn | Reply

Could I half the recipe to make only one loaf?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Donnalyn – Yes! Or you can make the full batch and freeze a loaf for later. 😊
Happy baking!

Pat | Reply

Could this be made in a breadmaker on dough cycle and then be baked?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Pat – Yes it can!
Happy baking!

Laurel | Reply

Could I use the sourdough yeast instead of the platinum yeast?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Laurel – Yes, use 1 full packet of Platinum Instant Sourdough.
Happy baking!

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