Slow Cooker Bread Recipe

Yields: 1 loaf
Prep time: 15 minutes + rising time
Cook time: 2-3 hours

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups (375g) bread flour (or all-purpose flour)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 ¼ teaspoons (1 packet) instant yeast
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ cups (360 ml) warm water (105-115°F/40-46°C)

Equipment:

  • Slow cooker (crockpot)
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Parchment paper
  • Optional: Cooking spray for the slow cooker

Instructions:

1. Activate the yeast:

  • In a small bowl, combine the warm water, sugar, and yeast. Stir gently and let stand for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is foamy (this indicates the yeast is alive and active).

2. Make the dough:

  • In the large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.
  • Add the activated yeast mixture to the dry ingredients and stir using a wooden spoon or sturdy spatula until a rough dough forms. It’s okay if it’s shaggy at this point.

3. Initial rise:

  • Lightly grease the mixing bowl or coat with cooking spray.
  • Place the dough in the greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel, and let it rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours, or until it has doubled in size.

4. Prepare the slow cooker:

  • Cut a piece of parchment paper that fits the bottom and slightly up the sides of your slow cooker. This prevents the bread from sticking.
  • Lightly grease the parchment paper or the slow cooker with cooking spray (optional).

5. Shape the dough:

  • Gently punch down the dough to release air bubbles.
  • On a lightly floured surface, shape the dough into a round loaf. Don’t over-knead, you just want to form a basic shape.

6. Cook the bread:

  • Place the loaf into the prepared slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours. Check at the 2-hour mark. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and it sounds hollow when tapped.
  • If the bread isn’t quite done, let it cook for another 15-30 minutes.

7. Cool and enjoy:

  • Carefully lift the loaf out of the slow cooker using the parchment paper. Let it cool on a wire rack for at least 10-15 minutes before slicing.

Important Tips:

  • Water temperature matters: Using water that’s too hot will kill the yeast, and water that’s too cold won’t activate it properly.
  • Room temperature helps the rise: Find a draft-free, warm spot in your kitchen to help the dough rise.
  • Every slow cooker is different: Check the bread at the 2-hour mark as cooking times can vary.
  • Get creative: Experiment by adding herbs, seeds, or a sprinkle of cheese on top before baking.

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