Ciabatta Bread Recipe

Ciabatta Bread Recipe


– 3 cups all purpose flour

– 13 ounces water

– 1 package dry active yeast

– 1 teaspoon sugar or honey

– 1 teaspoon salt

– Extra flour for dusting


  1. In a microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, add the water and sugar, and heat it in the microwave for 1 minute. The water should be luke warm. If not, microwave for another 15 – 20 seconds.

  2. Once the water is luke warm, whisk the yeast into the water and sugar mixture and then set aside for about 8 – 10 minutes to activate it.

  3. While the yeast is activating, add the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl and combine well.

  4. The yeast will have activated when a light foam appears on the top of the water. When that happens, add the water to the flour mixture and stir well, with a heavy spoon or spatula, to combine all ingredients well. The dough mixture will be very thin.

  5. Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator or leave it on the counter overnight for the first rise.

  6. When you are ready to prepare and bake the ciabatta, preheat the oven to 425 degrees. If you refrigerated the dough overnight, remove the dough and let it come to room temperature before shaping (about 1 hour).

  7. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  8. Flour your work surface with a very generous amount of flour.

  9. Pour out the ciabatta dough onto your work surface and top with another generous amount of flour.

  10. Using a bench scraper, divide the dough into 2 pieces. Place 1 piece to the side. Work the other piece with the help of the scraper a few times, “kneading” the dough over itself about 5 times. To make individual ciabatta rolls, see notes below.

  11. After kneading, sprinkle the dough again with flour and shape it as best you can into a foot long loaf and place it on 1/2 of the parchment lined baking sheet. Placement will be slightly haphazard because of the wetness of the dough. Do what you can to get it onto the parchment and then, if possible, gently reshape any problem areas.

  12. Repeat steps 8 – 11 with the second part of the dough, placing it on the other half of the parchment lined baking sheet.

  13. Let the dough rise a second time for about 20 – 30 minutes. It will not really double in size, but it will probably spread a little bit and should become puffy with some bubbles.

  14. Place the baking sheet with the ciabattas in the oven on the center rack and bake for 35 minutes. The breads are done when they are a deep golden brown and sound hollow when you tap the bottom of them.

  15. Remove the bread from the oven and let cool at least 1 hour prior to serving.


Ciabatta is a very wet dough and can be difficult to handle. Do not attempt ciabatta if this is your very first time making homemade bread. The dough is also somewhat easier to handle in less humid conditions. A bench scraper is highly recommended for handling this wet dough.

If you wish to make dinner or sandwich rolls out of this recipe, follow the directions through step 10. Instead of placing the shaped dough onto the baking sheet, use your bench scraper and cut the dough again into 4 – 8 pieces. Flour the cut pieces and place them onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat this process with the remaining piece of dough. Let the rolls rise for 20 – 30 minutes and then place them on the center rack in the oven. Bake for about 20 minutes. The rolls will be done when they are a deep golden brown color. Remove the rolls from the oven and let them cool at least 30 minutes prior to serving. If using the rolls for sandwiches, allow them to cool for at least 1 hour before assembling the sandwiches.

This site contains product affiliate links. We may receive a commission if you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links.