I love nothing more than tucking into warm, doughy, fluffy, homemade bread in the morning, or all day for that matter.
I am a bread lover and in all honesty, I panic a little when I run out of bread in the house.
I woke up a few mornings ago craving bread (like I do most mornings), and to my dismay, the loaf of bread I made a few days ago had disappeared (in my belly probably)!
To make matters worse, I had run out of yeast! No bread and no yeast and it was only 9 am, could this day get any worse?
Going to the supermarket seemed like far too much effort at this stage so I decided this would be a great time to do some experimenting and see if I could make bread with just flour and water and whatever else I had in my cupboard.
The great news is that I did manage to make something that resembled bread with just flour and water and it was super easy to do it!
So, if you want to know how to make bread with just flour and water, keep on reading as I take you through some of the recipes that worked and some that didn’t.
Can you make bread with just flour and water?
The short answer is yes, you can make bread with flour and water. Will it be the most delicious loaf of bread you will ever make? Probably not. Unless you have a thing for bland food, making bread with just flour and water will be a pretty tasteless experience!
I have tried a common few recipes (which I share below) although most use olive oil, salt, sugar, or herbs to add extra flavor. That said, for all you curious bakers out there, I made some dough only using just flour and water and gave them an old-fashioned taste test.
What I did discover is that you can’t make bread from just flour and water alone. And when I mean bread, I mean a whole loaf of bread. If you want a proper loaf of bread without yeast, you need some sort of raising agent.
This could be in the form of self-rising flour, baking powder or baking soda. And definitely use any herbs or spices that you have in your cupboard, it’ll take your water and flour bread to a whole new level.
Let’s take a look at what I made!
How to make bread with just flour and water
Quick Flatbread Recipe
- 200g all purpose flour
- 100ml water
- Put 200g of all purpose flour in a bowl and gradually add 100ml of lukewarm water while stirring with a spoon or fork. You might not need all the water, so make sure you add it a bit at a time.
- Start kneading your dough on a floured surface for about 5 minutes. If your dough still feels wet and is sticking to your fingers, add a bit more flour until it stops sticking. If your dough feels really dry, add a splash of water to loosen the dough up a little bit.
- After you’ve kneaded the dough for 5 minutes, shape it into a ball and cover it with cling film or a kitchen towel. Let your dough rest for about 30 minutes.
- Once your flour and water flatbread dough has relaxed, heat up a frying pan in medium heat with a little olive oil.
- While your frying pan is heating up, divide your dough into 4 or 6 equal balls, depending on how large you want your flatbreads to be.
- Flatten out the dough balls with the palm of your hand. Make sure you do this on a floured surface so your flatbreads don’t stick.
- Take your rolling pin (or a wine bottle/glass if you don’t have a rolling pin) and start rolling out your flatbreads. After every roll, turn your dough 90 degrees. Keep doing this with your dough balls until you get a smooth, round flatbread.
- Place your first flatbread in your pan and cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until you start seeing brown spots form. Do this with all your flatbreads.
- Enjoy your flatbreads in wrap or with your fajitas.
This is probably the easiest no yeast flatbreads you could ever make! And in general, flatbreads don’t need yeast so it doesn’t matter if you have yeast or not.
If you want to make a big batch of them, they freeze really well.
Baking tip: If I am dividing dough I always do this with my kitchen digital scales.
It might seem like an unnecessary step to make, but it makes all your dough ball equal. If you don’t have digital scales, what are you waiting for? You need them in your life ASAP!
Naan Bread Recipe With Self Raising Flour
This method is very similar to that of flatbreads. The only difference is that for naan bread you will need to use self rising flour.
Naan bread tends to be thicker and puffier than a normal flatbread, so self rising flour gives it that lift it needs.
If you don’t have self rising flour, mix some plain flour with half a teaspoon of baking powder.
I absolutely love naan bread and I knew that with just flour and water it would be very bland and I didn’t want them to go to waste.
So, I made 1 with just the self rising flour and water to show you how it would turn out and to the rest of them I added a bit of olive oil, garlic granules, salt and mixed herbs so I can enjoy with my curry.
Let’s take a look at the recipe!
- 200g self rising flour
- 100ml water
- Mix 200g of self-rising flour with 100ml of water in a bowl. Gradually add the water as you might not need it all. Add more flour or more water depending on whether your mixture is too dry or too wet.
- Knead the flour and water dough for about 5 minutes until you get a smooth ball.
- Just like with the flatbreads, let your naan dough rest for 30 minutes.
- Once it has rested, divide your dough into 4 balls on a floured surface.
- Using a rolling pin (or glass) flatten out each dough ball. Don’t worry if it’s not a perfect round circle. Naan bread isn’t meant to look perfectly round anyway.
- Heat up a frying pan to medium heat with some olive oil.
- Place your first naan dough in the frying pan and cook on each side for around 5 to 6 minutes or until the naan starts to puff up and has brown spots. Do this with every naan dough.
Enjoy your naan recipe with self rising flour with a delicious curry.
The naan on the right I flavoured with salt, sugar, olive oil, garlic granules and herbs and took the naan bread to a whole new level!
It puffed up nicely and had huge pockets like you would expect with a naan bread.
Individual Mini Loaves
These mini loaves are great if you are after some bread but don’t want to make a whole loaf. that will just sit and go stale in your bread bin.
And you don’t even need to bake them. Pop them on the frying pan and you’re good to go.
I must admit though, it did take me a few attempts to get these right as I couldn’t quite get them to cook through on the frying pan.
I made them too thick the first time and they were completely raw in the middle.
I also think that these will be very nice baked in the oven instead. I will try that this week and update you on how they turn out.
These can’t be made purely with just flour and water and they need the baking powder to give them a nice lift.
- 170 grams plain flour (1 cup)
- 80ml warm water
- 2tbsp oil
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1/2tsp salt
- Mix all the ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
- Knead the dough for 5 minutes and divide into 4 or 6 small dough balls on a floured surface.
- Shape your dough balls into small patties by flattening them out with the palm of your hand,
- Heat up a frying pan and drizzle some olive oil.
- Once your frying pan has heated up, place your mini loaves in and cook them for about 6 to 7 minutes on each side.
- Enjoy warm with a bowl of soup.
I added some herbs to mine to make them even more delicious.
If you want to make a more substantial loaf of bread but have ran out of yeast, then soda bread is another quick and easy bread creation.
This isn’t a recipe you can make with just flour and water, like you can with flatbread or naan bread. You will need a few extra ingredients which I am sure you have in your pantry and fridge.
Seeing as it’s called soda bread, the most important ingredient that you will need is bicarbonate of soda (duh!).
You will also need buttermilk for this recipe. The buttermilk reacts with the bicarbonate of soda, making the soda bread rise in the oven.
If you don’t have buttermilk, it is really easy to make at home. All you need to do is add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or white vinegar to your milk and voila you have buttermilk!
- 500g flour (plain or wholemeal)
- 1tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2tsp salt
- 400ml whole milk
- Juice from one lemon (or 2tbsp of bottled lemon juice)
- 2tsp honey (or substitute with sugar)
- Firstly, make your buttermilk by combining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or white vinegar to 400ml of milk. Let it rest for 15 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 356F/180C/gas 6 degrees.
- Mix all your dry ingredients together in a bowl.
- Once your buttermilk starts to curdle, add it to your dry mixture and mix well.
- Knead dough into a rough ball and score the top.
- Place on a tray and bake for 40 minutes.
- Once baked, let it cool for 10 minutes before cutting.
- Enjoy with some butter and jam and a cup of tea.
Soda bread isn’t my favourite type of bread and I don’t make it very often. I find it quite dense.
But, if you are craving some carbs and don’t have any yeast or don’t want to wait for your dough to rise all day, soda is a great option which can be made in just under an hour!
So, the answer to ‘Can I make bread with just flour and water?’ is ‘Absolutely you can!’.
It will be bland and very very tasteless, but if you are desperate, you can definitely make something that resembles bread in the form of flatbreads, naan, and mini loaves.
If you are looking to make a more substantial loaf of bread, you won’t be able to rely solely on water and flour.
You need other ingredients to give your loaf a lift and some flavor.
Some baking powder, salt, sugar, olive oil and herbs and spices will turn your bland bread into the most delicious loaf ever.
If you want to find out if you can make bread with self-rising flour, take a look at our most recent bread article!