31 Best Bread Recipes

Few foods are quite as traditional — and universal — as bread. With ancient bread debris dating as far back as 14,000 years ago, baking may even predate agriculture. Nevertheless, mixing together dough and throwing it in the oven still seems mystifying to many. However, with a good recipe in hand, and just a little trial and error, crafting a loaf is not only accessible but fun too!

Plus, bread is consumed in so many cultures — meaning there are endless styles to choose from. In this list, we've rounded up everything from Portuguese sweet bread to Ethiopian flatbread and classics like banana bread. And there are some combinations to excite even veteran bakers, like a pickle juice loaf or cheesy beer bread.

Sure, some of these preparations require patience, but nothing quite beats the sight (or taste) of a homemade loaf. So get out your stand mixer, and turn on the oven. Here are 31 of the best bread recipes.

1. Easy French Bread

It's hard to beat the versatility of a classic French loaf. With a soft interior and a perfect exterior crust, it's the ideal vehicle to sop up every drop of a delicious sauce. What may come as a surprise to bakers is the ease of creating such a bread.

Kick-start fermentation with just dry yeast, sugar, and lukewarm water in a bowl. Mix in the olive oil, salt, and flour, and knead the dough for only minutes. All that's left is to rest it, form it into loaves, and bake for 15-20 minutes. With such simplicity, it won't be hard to justify throwing together a loaf for dinner!

Recipe: Easy French Bread

2. Brown Butter Banana Bread

There's nothing worse than making banana bread that's just too dry. To combat this common mistake, we've revamped the recipe with a bit of sour cream. The dairy product's fat content brings a newfound richness and moisture to the bread.

Plus, some melted browned butter in the mix adds an intricacy of flavor, which really sings alongside the cinnamon and nutmeg. All this complexity comes together with a straightforward preparation — combining wet and dry ingredients, then baking for about an hour. Just a dollop of vanilla ice cream on top, perhaps?

Recipe: Brown Butter Banana Bread

3. Cheddar Beer Bread

Cheese, bread, and beer... now that's a likable combination of components. In this recipe, the brew is added not only for flavor but also to accelerate fermentation. From mixer to countertop, this fresh loaf will be ready in under an hour.

Just mix dry ingredients — flour, salt, garlic powder, baking powder, and cheese — and then pour in honey, the booze, and melted butter. Depending on the beer utilized, the loaf will have a distinct taste, so reach for a favorite from the fridge. After the thick batter bakes in the pan, make sure to eat the bread warm for a delightful gooey texture.

Recipe: Cheddar Beer Bread

4. Fresh-Baked Sourdough Bread

Though it's one of the most ancient forms of bread, sourdough still deserves the hype. The bread's pleasant tang not only makes it the ideal canvas for grilled cheese but also improves its shelf life. Sourdough requires only a handful of ingredients — flour, water, salt, and sourdough starter.

However, you do need some baking chops to master it. For starters, measurements must be laser precise. Additionally, each component must be carefully considered. For example, the flour must have a specific protein content and the water should be at a certain temperature. However, a deft combination of every element yields a magical result.

Recipe: Fresh-Baked Sourdough Bread

5. Braided Easter Bread

What better way to celebrate the holidays than by baking? This stunning Easter loaf catches the eye with its round shape — decorated with drizzles of glaze and colorful Easter eggs. Plus, its sweet lemon flavor is delightful, proving that it's not only about the looks.

It may seem like this bread can only be crafted by a pro, but it's doable even for a beginner. Just make sure to time the rise carefully and apply egg wash for the aesthetic sheen. And don't stress about the braids — the dough rolls are fairly thick, making them easy to handle.

Recipe: Braided Easter Bread

6. Easy Pumpernickel Bread

Boasting a hint of sweetness from molasses, spice from the caraway, and the earthiness of rye, this easy pumpernickel recipe delivers some incredible flavors. This versatile bread is suitable for both sweet or savory accompaniments. Pair it with cold cuts or a compote alongside a mug of tea.

Although dark loaves are less popular in the U.S., this German-style loaf isn't too difficult to craft. Simply mix the flour, salt, and flavorings, add the water and molasses, then stir to combine. Next, knead for 10 minutes, allow it to rest, and voila — it's ready for baking.

Recipe: Easy Pumpernickel Bread

7. Cinnamon Roll Monkey Bread

Sticky, sweet, and bursting with cinnamon flavor, monkey bread is a cheerful way to start the day and perfect for a family or group of friends. Tearing apart the dough balls by hand is a great way to get everyone involved.

Although the treat was originally brought over by Hungarian immigrants over a century ago, this version eases preparation with a quintessentially American ingredient — Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. Simply divide the dough into balls, and cover them with cinnamon and sugar. Bake in a bundt pan with butter for half an hour, pour icing on top, and this tasty breakfast is ready to be served.

Recipe: Cinnamon Roll Monkey Bread

8. Cocktail Party Rye Bread

Nothing wrong with a charcuterie spread served with crackers, but truly impress your guests by making a fresh rye loaf. Not only does the rye's earthy flavor go great with dips, cold cuts, and cheese, but any leftovers can be use to make great sandwiches.

The ingredients — rye flour, caraway seeds, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and instant yeast — create the perfect chewy yet aromatic rye bread. While assembly involves a few steps, it can be breezily interspersed between other party preparations. After all, it's this recipe's one-hour proofing time that makes the difference.

Recipe: Cocktail Party Rye Bread

9. Greek-Style Pita Bread

Flatbread is especially versatile, and it's hard to beat the soft, pliable, and delicious Greek-style pita. Although it can't be stuffed, it's a great vessel nevertheless — serve it as a fresh grilled chicken gyro, with hummus, or as a simple accompaniment to a salad.

This recipe does involve a bit more work since every pita dough must be divided and rolled out individually. However, uncooked portions will store for several days. So put in the effort ahead of time, then fry each flatbread alongside meal preparation — it'll hit the spot when warm.

Recipe: Greek-Style Pita Bread

10. Classic Boule Bread

Oftentimes, normal white bread is what hits the spot. It doesn't get more traditional than a French boule — with a perfectly crispy exterior and a soft white interior. Enjoy it with butter, or dip it into a bowl of steaming bouillabaisse.

The bread requires only four ingredients — yeast, water, salt, and flour. Yet, as with other bakes, that means every component, especially the flour, makes a difference. The other secret to this boule stand out is a double fermentation, which creates an indescribably airy consistency.

Recipe: Classic Boule Bread

11. Portuguese Sweet Bread

Few joys can compare to pulling apart a fresh, fluffy roll from the oven. To craft a batch, opt for this delicious baked good. In fact, it's similar to Hawaiian rolls, which originated when Portuguese workers brought the recipe for sweet bread to the tropical U.S. state. Despite its Iberian roots, there's nothing unfamiliar with the components. It comes together with pantry staples like bread flour, milk, dry yeast, and eggs.

Plus, there are no curveballs in preparation either. The only aspects involving patience are the 10-minute kneading and the three-hour proofing time. After 20 minutes in the oven, seven of these delights emerge.

Recipe: Portuguese Sweet Bread

12. No-Knead Rosemary Bread

Kneading, rolling, and forming... baking bread may feel so intimidating. This recipe is specifically tailored to beginners, involving minimal manual techniques. Instead of hand power, the dough's gluten activates with a prolonged rise time — 18 hours!

Despite the simplicity, the resultant loaf doesn't compromise on flavor. It boasts an aromatic note of rosemary, which makes it the perfect appetizer alongside high-quality olive oil and balsamic. Best of all, it'll retain freshness for five days at room temperature, so leftovers are encouraged.

Recipe: No-Knead Rosemary Bread

13. Irish Beer Bread

When hearing the phrase "Irish beer," assuming that means Guinness is a completely fair speculation. This recipe cleverly integrates the popular stout to create a complex dark loaf that's greater than the sum of its parts. With a malty, slightly sweet flavor, this bread makes for a nice breakfast item alongside some butter and a mug of tea.

Its assembly is deceptively simple. Brown sugar, flour, vanilla, baking powder, and salt are mixed in with a bottle of Guinness. The beer kick-starts fermentation, and the bread rises over a 45-minute bake time. All done in less than an hour!

Recipe: Irish Beer Bread

14. Classic Zucchini Bread

Zucchini offers many tasty possibilities — it can be pasta, pizza bites, and, yep, even bread. The vegetable contributes to a moist but good-looking loaf that has a texture reminiscent of a muffin.

The spices really come out to play in this recipe — cinnamon, ginger, and clove all imbue their aromatic character. Plus, pecans keep it interesting, adding an element of crunch. And the secret to the light composition? Folded-in egg whites. It may all seem like an unorthodox combination of ingredients, but this quick bread will have you reaching for another slice.

Recipe: Classic Zucchini Bread

15. Spiced Sweet Potato Bread

A fragrant sweet loaf is the right move for a weeknight treat. After about an hour and a half of prep and baking, you get an accompaniment to coffee for several days in a row. This recipe incorporates loads of flavors — cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, vanilla, applesauce, molasses, and three types of sugar, all underpinned with grated sweet potatoes.

Such a shopping list may seem hefty, but it's completely worthwhile. All the ingredients merge into a colorful symphony that makes each bite sing. And don't stress about the assembly. Just mix the dry and wet ingredients separately, combine everything together, and then bake for an hour.

Recipe: Spiced Sweet Potato Bread

16. Homemade Sandwich Bread

Flavored loaves are tasty and all, but when it comes to sandwiches, the bread should allow other ingredients to shine. Such is the case with this buttery loaf, whose delectable texture takes center stage instead. It has a moist and delicate feel — ideal for the full range of potential fillings, from BLT to egg salad. Plus, it makes for a beautifully crisped toast too.

Such an airy result is achieved through an elaborate series of steps, so it's best to attempt with some baking experience. However, when it's done properly, no store-bought loaf can compare.

Recipe: Homemade Sandwich Bread

17. French Onion Pull-Apart Bread

Baking from scratch isn't for everyone, but that doesn't mean pre-made bread can't be a centerpiece. This dish draws upon the flavor profile of French onion soup for an eye-catching pull-apart loaf. There is a bit of prep involved, but with techniques that anyone can handle.

First, the onions are slowly caramelized, the cheese shredded, and the butter infused with garlic, salt, and pepper. Next comes the tricky part — diagonally cutting up the bread to get crevices just deep enough to stuff the onion filling and cheese inside. Bake for 25 minutes, and the perfect party appetizer emerges.

Recipe: French Onion Pull-Apart Bread

18. Homemade Garlic Bread

Crispy, buttery bread garnished with garlic — it doesn't get any more Italian American than that. For the tastiest result, make your own version, especially since it takes less than 10 minutes.

This recipe calls for ciabatta as the base and adds an herbal tinge with chopped parsley, and it also allows for personalization over just how garlicky and cheesy the bread is. If you're anything like us, load it on. After a few rounds in the broiler, deliciousness is served.

Recipe: Homemade Garlic Bread

19. Pickle Juice Bread

Once the jar of pickles is done, there's plenty of opportunity to get creative with the juice. How about a vinaigrette, a cocktail... or even a loaf of bread?

Yep, all that brine makes for a delicious bread base, and little pickle chunks only add to the tangy appeal. Rye flour is used to balance out the acidity with its earthy notes. The no-fuss assembly comes together in just under an hour, creating a loaf that goes well with Eastern European classics like borscht and pickled herring.

Recipe: Pickle Juice Bread

20. Irish Brown Soda Bread

With its approachable flavor profile and biscuit-like texture, soda bread is an excellent candidate for breakfast. Serve it with jam, or alongside eggs and bacon; its subtle hint of sweetness makes it amenable to accompaniments.

For an added dose of textural variability, this recipe also incorporates chewy raisins. And to create a wonderfully crispy crust, the exterior is brushed with butter, and the whole loaf is baked in a cast iron pan. If it comes out a little uneven, that's totally fine. This loaf is about the rustic appeal!

Recipe: Irish Brown Soda Bread

21. Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Olive oil rarely makes an appearance in sweet breads, but its presence is underrated. Not only does it offer better nutrition than refined oils, but it also adds an appealing flavor.

Like with the other banana bread recipe on this list, the addition of sour cream keeps the texture moist. The assembly is a breeze — with flour, baking soda, and salt blended in one bowl, and bananas, eggs, vanilla, olive oil, sour cream, and two types of sugar in another. Mix the two together, fold in the chocolate chips, and the banana bread is ready to bake.

Recipe: Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

22. Traditional Fry Bread

Fry bread is associated with Native American cuisine, but it's actually a product of food scarcity that was invented after tribes were kicked off of their agricultural lands. Unable to grow crops, they subsisted primarily on government-issued supplies, such as flour and sugar. Such a backstory explains the bread's simple assortment of ingredients.

Though it has sad historical origins, the Southwestern classic is tasty and easy to make. Simply combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix in milk, and then stir to form a dough. Next comes the fun part: forming the flatbreads, with a small hole in the center of each one. Finish by frying the pieces to golden, crispy perfection.

Recipe: Traditional Fry Bread

23. Zucchini Carrot Bread

This sweet bread doubles down with carrots and zucchini — both frequent fridge leftovers. No need to worry about using the vegetables for dinner — they can become a moist loaf instead!

To balance the water content, the veggies are grated, and then the liquid is squeezed out with a spatula. Meanwhile, the dough comes together in both dry and wet parts, while a sprinkling of cinnamon and ground ginger adds flavor. Stir the two mixtures together, fold in the shredded vegetables, pour everything into a loaf pan, and bake for about an hour.

Recipe: Zucchini Carrot Bread

24. Monkey Bread

A sweet and sticky finger food, monkey bread evokes childhood nostalgia. However, that doesn't mean it can't be elevated for adults with a bit of booze. This recipe crafts a delicious dough — completely from scratch — and dresses it with decadent bourbon caramel.

Maple syrup goes into the dough, glaze, and caramel, while a dusting of cinnamon adds warm spiced notes. The dough comes together fairly easily in a stand mixer and can be proved in the fridge overnight. Rolling every individual ball during assembly does take some time, but it's also the most fun part of the process — other than eating, of course.

Recipe: Monkey Bread

25. Applesauce Bread

This recipe not only hits all the right notes in terms of taste but provides nutrition too. The inclusion of wheat germ ups the fiber content, so pairing a few slices with a couple of eggs can create a well-balanced breakfast.

The loaf's flavors are a delight — cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg combined with a cup of applesauce. Plus, some golden raisins round out the texture. After a single bake, this bread is bound to become a repeat go-to.

Recipe: Applesauce Bread

26. Pumpkin Banana Bread

Sometimes, crafting comfort takes some effort — so don't shy away from the lengthy shopping list for this autumn-inspired loaf. Additions like pumpkin purée, pumpkin pie spice, honey, vanilla, and mashed bananas all coalesce to create a loaf with homey appeal. Meanwhile, the use of Greek yogurt keeps the bread moist.

More of the effort lies in shopping than in assembly. Dry and wet ingredients are mixed separately, then combined together along with optional personal touches like nuts, dried fruit, and chocolate for textural variety. The batter is poured into a loaf pan and baked for about an hour. 

Recipe: Pumpkin Banana Bread

27. Shortcut Injera (Ethiopian Sour Flatbread)

Soft injera is indispensable to an Ethiopian feast; use it as a vessel for spiced lentils, kitfo, or even a curry from another cuisine. Its porous, bubble-filled texture and sour taste make it an ideal companion to sopping up stews and sauces.

The secret to injera is teff — an ancient domesticated crop that is the world's smallest grain. For this recipe, it's used in flour form and mixed with some all-purpose flour. Some instant yeast speeds up the fermentation, and apple cider vinegar adds a tang. Cooking the injera is reminiscent of pancakes — the batter is ladled into a pan.

Recipe: Shortcut Injera (Ethiopian Sour Flatbread)

28. Green Chile and Tomatillo Corn Bread

In this recipe, cornbread gets an ultra-flavorful boost with Southwestern ingredients. First, poblanos, jalapeños, and onions are broiled to bring out a delectable char. Meanwhile, the dough, made with cornmeal, baking powder, flour, baking soda, sugar, and salt, gets a sprinkling of cumin for a savory backbone.

The filling comes together almost like a salsa — tomatillos are thrown into a blender alongside an ample serving of cilantro, more peppers, as well as egg, buttermilk, and butter. The dry ingredients meet the wet ones, and the charred ingredients are folded in. The result: a perfect food to bring to a barbecue. 

 Recipe: Green Chile and Tomatillo Corn Bread

29. Pumpkin Spice Babka

A Jewish classic, babka brings together a soft, airy texture with loads of flavor. Its most quintessential characteristic is the interior swirl. While the technique may seem intimidating, you can actually pull it off just by halving the dough and twisting the strands.

Most babkas integrate chocolate or cinnamon, but this loaf innovates with the use of pumpkin spice. That means reaching for many pantry components — cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and nutmeg, all mixed with pumpkin purée and brown sugar — but the taste is worth the effort.

Recipe: Pumpkin Spice Babka

30. Breakfast Focaccia

Bread never ceases to amaze with its impressive versatility. In this focaccia recipe, the bake itself makes for an entire morning meal. Throw in breakfast sausage, bacon, a roasted red pepper, and even half a dozen eggs — with yolks cooked to runny perfection.

The dough, which is made completely from scratch, comes together easily. Simply mix in warm milk with yeast and sugar, then combine with flour, grated cheese, and olive oil. Sure, an hour and a half of proofing time takes some patience in the morning, but once the bread hits the table, you won't regret it.

Recipe: Breakfast Focaccia

31. Homemade English Muffins

Looking to upgrade your homemade eggs Benedict? Give the English muffins extra attention. While grabbing a package at the store is easy, there's nothing quite like a fresh batch from the oven. And the bake is delicious when served with jam too.

The preparation does take some time, but it's nothing too technical. Just add sugar and yeast to warm water, then stir in melted butter, flour, and salt. Next comes the fun hands-on part of the process: kneading, forming the dough balls, and then frying. Just don't forget the cornmeal sprinkle — it's necessary for the perfect crust.

Recipe: Homemade English Muffins