Skip to Content

Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread

My easy to make Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread is crusty on the outside with a buttery soft interior. It’s the perfect homemade bread for sandwiches, toast or simply to spread with butter.

This super easy farmhouse loaf recipe makes one large 2 lb loaf or two small 1 lb loaves. Your bread can be done and dusted in about 3 hours but that includes the dough rising and baking.

Hands on time is less than 20 minutes, so you can do something else as your dough rises and bakes.

Bread with jam and butter on a wooden board.

As a failsafe white bread recipe, this is ideal to try if you’re new to bread making. You’ll find plenty of tips to help you through the process including making the dough, shaping the bread and baking.

Once you see how easy this is to make, you’ll be baking a Farmhouse Loaf again and again. If you’re a more seasoned baker, you can, of course, skip the tips and go straight to the recipe.

Bread on a cooling rack.

You may know by now that I love making bread here at the Kitchen Shed. For me, you really can’t beat a homemade loaf:

  • you choose what to put in it
  • you avoid unwanted extras often found in mass produced bread
  • it’s much more economical to make your own
  • you can’t beat the aroma of homemade bread baking in the oven.

What is a Farmhouse Loaf ?

Farmhouse bread is a white, crusty loaf baked in a tin. It has a lovely soft texture perfect for sandwiches and toast.

Finished loaf in a tin with a cloth.

What equipment do I need ?

  • I use my KitchenAid stand mixer to knead the dough. Simply add the ingredients and mix on a low speed. But don’t worry if you haven’t got a stand mixer. All you need is a bit of elbow grease and you can easily knead by hand.
Finished loaf in a tin.
  • A 2lb loaf tin or two 1lb loaf tins – I use my favourite Masterclass tin. Its heavy gauge steel ensures a nice even bake and produces a good loaf shape. (Master Class bread tins come with a 20 year guarantee) A quality tin is a worthwhile investment.
  • A shallow baking tin containing hot water to place in the bottom of the oven. This creates the beautiful crispy crust.

What ingredients do I need ?

Ingredients with written labels.

You only need 6 basic ingredients to make this recipe:flour, water, butter, yeast, salt and sugar. See the recipe card for quantities.

Whilst you only need four ingredients to make bread, I add softened butter and sugar.


A small amount of butter is enough to increase the bread’s shelf life and contributes to a soft crumb. Such a small quantity of butter will not affect the lovely crispy crust.


Adding a small amount of sugar to your dough mixture speeds up the action of the yeast. This way you avoid the long proving time needed when making, for example, French bread or sourdough.

What type of yeast should I use ?

I’ve used instant yeast in the recipe, often called fast action or quick yeast. This yeast has the advantage that you can add it directly to your flour.

My favourite is Dove’s Farm Quick Yeast, which comes in a handy 125g packet. Once opened, Dove’s Farm Yeast will keep for up to two months if you store it in a cool dry place.

I order my yeast from Amazon in packs of three and the Use Before date has always been a couple of years in the future.

You can use active dry yeast in the recipe.

  • Add 2 teaspoons of yeast to warm water along with 1 teaspoon of caster/extra fine sugar.
  • Stir and leave for 10 to15 minutes to bubble up.
  • It’s now ready to be added to the rest of the ingredients.

What type of flour should I use ?

You will need a high gluten content flour, generally labelled as Bread Flour or Strong White Flour.

I like to use Marriage’s Very Strong White Bread Flour, which is milled from 100 % Canadian wheat.

This flour has the advantage of being high in protein, so producing more gluten than a strong white bread flour. It’s perfect for baking the best farmhouse loaf as it produces a higher rise and a better texture.

What temperature water should I use ?

Lukewarm water is best, that is, you should be able to comfortably dip your finger into your water. Cold water will work but it will take longer for the bread to rise.

A Themapen measuring the temperature of water.

REMEMBER: too high a temperature will kill your yeast. Just like us, yeast works best at around 37°C / 98°F. Using my Thermapen, I check the temperature is between 37°C / 98°F and no more than 40°C / 104°F.

How to make the Best Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread

Four images to show the ingredients in a mixing bowl being made into a smooth dough.

Make your dough

  • I use my trusty KitchenAid stand mixer. All you have to do is add the ingredients and set on a slow speed for 10 minutes. Once the dough is smooth and elastic, check it using the window pane test.
  • Equally, the dough can be hand mixed together in a bowl and then kneaded on a counter top. You will get the same results, all you need is a bit of elbow grease.

The Windowpane Test is a consistently reliable way to check your dough is ready. Pinch off a small piece of dough and gently stretch it apart, pulling and rotating the dough into a thin membrane, or window pane, which is translucent when you hold it up to the light.

  • Cover your dough and leave to rise for about an hour in a warm place. If it’s a cold day this may take up to 2 hours.
Two bowls side by side to show the proving process.

Shape your loaf

  • Transfer your dough onto a lightly oiled work surface. Use oil not flour as you want your bread to be nice and soft. If you were to use flour, this would be adding flour to your dough and give you a drier loaf.
  • I don’t knock back the dough as such. Removing the dough from your bowl and then shaping your bread will take enough air out of it. Why punch all that air out after you’ve patiently waited for it to rise ?
  • I’ve experimented with both approaches, knocking back and shaping without knocking back. Without a doubt, I’ve had the best results when not knocking back the dough.
Rectangle of dough being rolled into shape.
  • Shape your loaf by gently working your dough into a rectangle.
  • Roll up your dough tightly from the short side. If you roll up loosely you will end up with big air pockets in your bread.
  • Pinch the seams together and turn the loaf over so you have the long seam on the bottom.
  • Place in a greased loaf tin.
  • Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes.
Shaped loaf on the work top and then in a tin.

Bake your Farmhouse Loaf

  • Using a sharp greased knife, make 3 slashes in your loaf at a 45° angle. Now dust the loaf top with a little flour.
  • Bake in a preheated oven for about 40 minutes. See notes below about a crispy crust.
  • Once baked, tip your loaf onto a cooling rack. Tap the base of the bread to check it is cooked, it should sound hollow.
A food thermometer measuring the internal temperature of the baked loaf.


An easy way to check your loaf is sufficiently baked is to measure the internal temperature with a food thermometer. Again, my favourite Thermapen comes into its own. The internal temperature of your loaf should be 90°C / 194°F to 95°C / 203°F.

How To Get A Crispy Crust On Your Bread

Crusty slices of bread on a board.

Preheat oven to 230°C and place a shallow baking tin in the bottom of the oven. You add boiling water to this tin when you put your loaf in to bake.

This creates a nice steamy oven which keeps the dough’s surface flexible and moist. This flexibility allows for a higher rise of the dough during what is known as “oven spring”.

Steam also creates a lovely brown crispy crust as it combines with starches before forming a gel.

As the dough bakes this gel turns to a brittle and glossy shell, ie, your crispy crust.

Don’t be tempted to add too much water. One cupful is enough to create steam at the beginning of baking which is all you need. Too much steam throughout and you can end up with a thick tough crust.


Place your farmhouse bread in the oven and quickly pour a cup of boiling water into the baking tin. Gently close the oven door.

Four images to show a risen loaf being slashed and put inot hte oven with a tray of hot water.

How Long Will It Keep ?

Like most homemade bread, fresh is best but Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread will keep for a couple of days.

Can I Freeze It ?

A knife with slices of bread.

Yes, Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread freezes well. Make sure your loaf is fully cooled and place in a freezer bag before freezing for up to three months. It can also be sliced and then frozen so you can take out slices as you need them and avoid waste.

To defrost, remove your bread from the freezer a couple of hours before you need it and defrost at room temperature.

Serving suggestions

  • we love it toasted or as soldiers with a soft boiled egg.
  • with soup
  • sandwiches
  • to make croutons
  • breadcrumbs in recipes like fish fingers and Veggie Cassoulet topping
  • simply with butter and jam
Slices of bread on a board with jam and butter.

If You Like This Recipe …you might also like:

Let’s Keep In Touch! You can Find Me On PinterestInstagram, Facebook and Twitter

Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread

My easy to make Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread is crusty on the outside with a buttery soft interior. It’s the perfect homemade bread for sandwiches, toast or simply to spread with butter.
5 from 14 votes
Print Pin Rate this Recipe Save Recipe
Course: bread, Breakfast, Lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: British
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Resting Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 16
Calories: 162kcal
Author: Sarah James

Equipment

  • stand mixer – I use my KitchenAid or knead by hand.
  • Mixing Bowl
  • 2lb loaf tin or two 1lb loaf tins
  • shallow baking tin

Ingredients

  • 600 g very strong white bread flour plus extra for dusting
  • 2 tsp fine sea salt / kosher salt
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp instant yeast I use Dove's Farm
  • 50 g softened butter 4tbs
  • 350 ml tepid water

Instructions

Make Your Dough

  • By hand: Mix the flour, softened butter, salt, sugar and yeast in a large bowl and make a well in the centre.
  • Add a little water. Mix thoroughly, adding a little water at a time until you have formed a ball of dough.
  • Transfer dough to a floured surface and knead for 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Check your dough is ready by using the windowpane test.
  • KitchenAid: Add flour, softened butter, salt, sugar and yeast to the mixing bowl, make a well and add the water.
  • Mix on slow speed number 1 for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Turn up to number 2 speed for a further 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Check your dough is ready by using the windowpane test.

Prove Your Dough

  • Place your dough in a large greased bowl and cover.
  • Leave to rest in a warm place for at least one and a half hours or until doubled in size.

Shape Your Dough

  • Transfer the dough to an oiled work surface.
  • Shape your loaf by gently working your dough into a rectangle.
  • Roll up your dough from the short side.
  • Pinch the seams together and turn the loaf over so you have the long seam on the bottom.
  • Place in a greased loaf tin or tins.
  • Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 230°C and place a shallow baking tin in the bottom of the oven.

Baking Instructions

  • Using a sharp greased knife, make 3 slashes in your loaf at a 45° angle before lightly dusting your loaf top with a little flour.
  • Place your bread in the oven and then quickly pour a cup of hot water into the pre-heated baking tin. Gently close the oven door.
  • Bake for 10 minutes at 230°C /210°C.
  • Turn your oven down to 200°C / 180°C fan and continue baking.
  • Large loaf: 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown.
    Small loaves 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown.
  • Tip your loaf onto a cooling rack and tap the base of the bread to check it is cooked, it should sound hollow. Alternatively, check your loaf’s internal temperature – ideally it should be around 90°C / 194°F to 95°C / 203°F.
  • Leave to cool.

Notes

  • Makes one large loaf (12 to 16 slices) or two small loaves.
  • Like most homemade bread, fresh is best but Farmhouse Bread will keep for a couple of days.
  • Farmhouse White Sandwich Bread freezes well. Make sure your loaf is fully cooled and place in a freezer bag before freezing for up to three months. It can also be sliced and then frozen so you can take out slices as you need them and avoid waste.
  • To defrost, remove your bread from the freezer a couple of hours before you need it and defrost at room temperature. 
  • Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
Serving: 1slice | Calories: 162kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 315mg | Potassium: 49mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 79IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 1mg

Pin Crusty Farmhouse Bread For Later

Top image is bread with jam and butter.  Bottom image is a loaf in the oven with a tin being filled with water.

I have linked this recipe to #CookBlogShare run by Sisley & Chloe which is hosted this week by Chloe at Feast Glorious Feast

Sharing is caring!

Recipe Rating




Chloe

Tuesday 25th of January 2022

Soft white bread is my achillies heel and this looks just delicious. The only problem is that I could eat that whole loaf in an evening by myself!

Choclette

Tuesday 25th of January 2022

This looks like the perfect farmhouse loaf. I bet it tastes delicious. It's interesting how bread baking methods have changed over the years. I think Dan Lepard put a stop to me knocking back my loaves many years ago now.

Lesley

Tuesday 25th of January 2022

You can't beat a traditional white sandwich bread, lovely crust and soft in the middle. Really clear recipe with instructions that are simple and straightforward to follow.

Toni

Monday 10th of January 2022

Thank you so much for the tips and recipe! It turned out really good!

Claudia

Monday 10th of January 2022

This bread was delicious the family really enjoy it and will make again