This soft & tender Buttermilk Bread is simply the best!! It’s not only great for sandwiches…it makes great french toast. It’s great for freezing, so you can eat one loaf and freeze the second one for later.
One of my very favorite things to do is to play with yeast. It’s so amazing how a small packet of yeast can be used to create the most delicious bread ever. It’s also amazing that after all these years of playing in the kitchen, I still have flour everywhere when I bake.
When I make this buttermilk bread it makes two loaves. I usually make sandwiches with some of it and slather some with butter to go alongside my dinner. After a couple of days, I use some of it to make french toast. It’s soft and tender and delicious any way you eat it.
If you’ve never played with yeast or made homemade bread, don’t be intimidated. Once you start playing with yeast, you’ll be wanting to make all kinds of yeast recipes.
Just in case this is your first time using yeast, I’ll give you a quick overview of how I made this easy buttermilk bread. There are a few steps but all of them are easy.
I started by adding a warm mixture of buttermilk, butter, and sugar to some flour, yeast, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer with the hook attachment. I kept adding flour, using the hook attachment until the dough was smooth and elastic and I transferred it to a lightly floured work surface. I formed the dough into a ball and placed it in a greased bowl and left it to rise in a warm oven until it had doubled in size.
Once the dough had doubled in size, I punched it down and transferred it to a lightly floured surface again.
Top Left – I cut the dough into 2 halves.
Top Right – I rolled each half into a rectangle. Then I rolled each rectangle into a cylinder, starting with a short end.
Bottom Left – I pinched the seam together on the bottom of each cylinder of dough.
Bottom Right – And I pinched together the ends and tucked them under.
I placed each loaf of dough in a greased loaf dish. I covered them with a towel and transferred them to a warm oven to rise again. The second and final rise. Once they had doubled in size, I removed them from the oven. Note: In the picture on the left, I inadvertently brushed the loaf with butter, which is not necessary at this step, but it also doesn’t hurt it.
Top Left – Shows the loaves once they had risen for the second and final time.
Bottom Left – I made a long slash lengthwise on the top of each loaf, about 1/4 inch deep, then I brushed each loaf with butter and allowed the dough to rest while I preheated my oven.
Bottom Right – I baked the loaves until they were golden brown on the tops and sides. I removed them from the oven and brushed them with butter again.
You see, it’s really not hard to make bread. There are a few steps, but they are all easy.
- For a soft tender crust, brush the loaves with milk, buttermilk or butter prior to baking.
- For a crisp chewy crust, spray the loaves occasionally with water during the baking process.
- For a shiny crust, brush the loaves with an egg wash (a mixture of egg and water) prior to baking.
Note: The loaves in the picture above were brushed with melted butter.
- Always make sure the bread has completely cooled before storing or freezing it. If bread is not completely cooled, condensation can form on the inside of the bag or container and cause the bread to mold.
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This soft & tender Buttermilk Bread is a great anytime bread. It’s great for sandwiches, french toast, slathered with butter, or toasted. It’s also great for freezing.
- 1 packet dry instant yeast
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4 1/2 cups bread or all-purpose flour, divided
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 cups full-fat buttermilk
- 1 stick unsalted butter, divided
Preheat oven to 160 degrees and turn off.
- Add the yeast, salt, and 2 cups of the flour to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Lightly whisk the ingredients together and set aside.
- Add the sugar, buttermilk and 6 tablespoons of the butter to a small saucepan. Mix and heat over medium heat until mixture is very warm (120 to 130 degrees). The butter does not have to be totally melted. Remove from heat.
- Add the buttermilk mixture to the mixing bowl and beat on low speed just until combined. Increase mixer to medium speed and beat for 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
- Add 1 cup of the flour and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add an additional 1 1/4 cups of flour to the mixing bowl and beat on low speed just long enough to incorporate the flour. Turn the mixer to high and beat with dough hook for about 3 minutes. The dough should be stiff but smooth and elastic and should pull away from the sides of the bowl and cling to the dough hook and center of the bowl.
- Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface. If the dough is sticky, add additional flour as needed, up to about 1/8 cup. Try not to use any more flour than is needed to be able to handle the dough. Form dough into a ball and place in a large greased bowl. Turn the dough over once to ensure that both sides of the dough are greased. Place a towel over the bowl and transfer the bowl to the warm oven. Allow dough to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Remove from oven.
- Punch down the dough. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half with a sharp knife or a bench scraper. Cover the dough with a towel and allow it to rest for about 10 minutes. Using a rolling pin, roll each half into a rectangle. Starting at a short end, roll each piece of dough into a cylinder, (like a jelly roll). Pinch the seam and ends and turn the ends under. Place the two dough cylinders, seam sides down, into 2 greased loaf pans, 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″. Transfer the pans to a warm oven and cover with a towel. Allow dough to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Remove from oven.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter.
- Using a sharp knife, cut a long line on the top of the dough, cutting 1/4 inch deep, the entire length of the dough. Brush the tops of the loaves with half of the melted butter.
- Transfer the loaves to the center rack of the preheated oven, making sure the pans are at least 2 inches apart. Bake loaves for approximately 30 minutes or until loaves are golden brown on top and are slightly pulling away from the sides of the pans. If the loaves start to brown too quickly on top, loosely place a piece of foil over them. Remove from oven. Allow loaves to cool for 5 minutes. Brush the loaves with the remaining melted butter. Transfer loaves to a wire rack to cool.
- Store bread loaves in an airtight container or plastic bag.
- Bread is best if eaten within 2 days.
- Bread can be frozen for up to 1 month if wrapped securely.
- Preparation time does not include rising time.
- You can choose to not slash the tops of the loaves if you prefer. The purpose of slashing the tops of some loaves of bread is to allow the carbon dioxide to escape, helping to prevent cracks in the bread.
- Use a serrated knife for easy slicing of bread.
Keywords: Buttermilk Bread, Bread, Homemade Bread, Sandwich Bread, Bread Loaves,