Crusty Cranberry Nut No Knead Bread

Yeasted bread has never been easier. This simple mixing method produces the most beautiful and crusty cranberry nut no knead bread with practically zero hands-on work!

No-knead super crusty, soft, and EASY bread made in the dutch oven! Filled with dried cranberries and walnuts, the bread is delicious! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Here’s a recipe you’re going to memorize and I’m not saying that because it’s so simple. I’m saying it because it’s an unbelievably and awesomely delicious homemade bread with a major crust, a soft and chewy texture, and plenty of irresistible nuts and dried cranberries to keep each piece interesting and unique. You won’t be able to stop making it. You won’t be able to stop eating it. And, as such, you’ll memorize the recipe in no time. That’s a guarantee.

I’ve made this no knead bread 4x within 2 weeks and I’m not even a bread person. But it MADE ME A BREAD PERSON. Not sure if that’s a bad thing?

No-knead super crusty, soft, and EASY bread made in the dutch oven! Filled with dried cranberries and walnuts, the bread is delicious! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

“Homemade bread” and “easy” are terms that don’t typically go hand-in-hand. When you think of homemade bread, you get pretty freaked out, right? Seems like a terrible idea, majorly complicated, and a general waste of time. This recipe, however, will completely change that universal thought. I realize that’s a pretty big promise, but I’m confident your perception of homemade bread will switch from “too fancy schmancy” to “wow, I can do this.”

Baking with Yeast Guide

Reference this Baking with Yeast Guide whenever you work with baker’s yeast. I include practical answers to all of your common yeast questions.

This bread, like my homemade artisan bread, has all the bells and whistles and takes zero effort to make. If you’re feeling lazy…. awesome. Because this recipe is for you.

How to Make No Knead Bread

  1. Stir 5 ingredients together. Don’t even break out your mixer.
  2. Stir in extras like chopped walnuts and dried cranberries.
  3. Shape into a ball and leave it alone for a day.
  4. Kick up your feet and don’t knead the dough.
  5. Score an X on top of the dough and bake it.
  6. You’re done.

This whole no-work, no-knead, professional-bread-at-home concept has swarmed the internet and after some research, I found it originally came from Jim Lahey of Sullivan Street Bakery in NYC. It’s all very basic ingredients, but his method is unique, which includes an 18 hour rise time. 18 hours?! Yes! Don’t be nervous, this 18 hours gives the dough a chance to ferment. And the fermentation time requires absolutely nothing from you. Just set it on your counter and forget about it until the next day. The magic happens when you’re not looking!

Red Star Yeast - Platinum

Only 5 Ingredients for No Knead Bread

You don’t need a lot of ingredients to make homemade bread and you might already know that if you’ve tried my sandwich bread recipe. You only need 5 ingredients here, which include kitchen staples like flour, salt, and honey. You’ll also need a little warm water to bring all the ingredients together and activate the yeast. For the yeast, we’re using Red Star Platinum, my favorite. Don’t be nervous– yeast doesn’t bite, I promise. 🙂 It’s just another ingredient you’re adding.

Honey isn’t usually added to traditional no knead bread recipes, but I wanted a little extra flavor here. A couple Tablespoons of flour make up for the added liquid. There’s also lots of walnuts and cranberries for interesting texture. Not that this bread needs any assistance in the texture category. It’s SO crisp and crusty. Just look at it! And that long rise time ensures an amazingly chewy texture.

How to make easy crusty no-knead bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

You’ll bake the bread in a super hot dutch oven. If you don’t have one, you can use any heavy duty pot with a lid, providing it’s oven-proof.

Why Bake No Knead Bread in a Dutch Oven?

Baking the bread with the lid on traps steam inside the pot, creating that perfect crust. A lid is KEY to this bread recipe’s success! You won’t regret picking up a dutch oven.

No Dutch Oven? No Problem.

While the dutch oven is key to this bread’s texture, you can get around it. Instead, place the rounded dough on a parchment paper lined or generously floured baking pan. Score the bread as noted in step 3 below. Preheat the oven. After the oven is preheated, place a shallow metal or cast iron baking pan or skillet (I usually use a metal 9×13 baking pan) on the bottom oven rack. Carefully and quickly pour 3-4 cups of boiling water into it. Place the scored dough/baking pan on a higher rack and quickly shut the oven, trapping the steam inside. The steam helps create a crispier crust.

No-knead super crusty, soft, and EASY bread made in the dutch oven! Filled with dried cranberries and walnuts, the bread is delicious! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

No-knead super crusty, soft, and EASY bread made in the dutch oven! Filled with dried cranberries and walnuts, the bread is delicious! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

It’s so easy, you’ll be silly not to try it. And you’ll really be missing out!

Step-by-step pictures and additional tips below the recipe.

Print

Crusty Cranberry Nut No Knead Bread

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf; 8-10 servings
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Yeasted bread has never been easier. This simple mixing method produces the most beautiful and crusty cranberry nut no knead bread with practically zero hands-on work!


Ingredients

  • 3 cups + 2 Tablespoons (390g) all-purpose flour, (spoon & leveled) plus more for hands
  • 2 teaspoons coarse sea salt (I find the flavor lacking using regular table salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Red Star Platinum yeast (instant yeast)
  • 3/4 cup (95g) chopped nuts (I like walnuts or pecans)
  • 3/4 cup (105g) dried cranberries*
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) warm water (about 95°F (35°C))

Instructions

  1. *No need to grease the bowl.* Stir the first 6 ingredients together in a large bowl. Stir in the warm water. The dough will be pretty sticky– don’t be tempted to add more flour– you want a sticky dough. Gently shape into a ball as best you can. Cover tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Set on the counter at room temperature (honestly any normal room temperature is fine!) and allow to rise for 12-18 hours. The dough will double in size, stick to the sides of the bowl, and be covered in air bubbles.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and, using lightly floured hands, shape into a ball as best you can. Doesn’t have to be perfect! Transfer dough to a large piece of parchment paper. (Large enough to fit inside your pot and one that is safe under such high heat. I use this parchment and it’s never been an issue.)
  3. Using a very sharp knife, gently score an X into the top. Cover dough lightly with plastic wrap and leave alone for 30 minutes.
  4. During this 30 minutes, preheat the oven to 475°F (246°C). (Yes, very hot!) Place your dutch oven (with the lid) or heavy duty pot inside for 30 minutes so that it’s extremely hot before the dough is placed inside. After 30 minutes, remove the dutch oven from the oven and carefully place the dough inside by lifting it up with the parchment paper and sticking it all– the parchment paper included– inside the pot. Cover with the lid.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes with the lid on. Carefully remove the lid and continue baking for 8-10 more minutes until the bread is golden brown. Remove pot from the oven, carefully remove the bread from the pot, and allow to cool on the counter for 30 minutes before breaking/slicing/serving.
  6. Cover and store leftover bread at room temperature for 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: The dough takes up to 18 hours to rise, so this is a wonderful recipe to begin 1 day ahead of time. You can also bake the bread, allow it to cool, and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving. You can also freeze the dough. Complete the recipe through step 2. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in a freezer-friendly container. To bake, allow dough to thaw overnight in the refrigerator, or for 2-3 hours at room temperature. Continue with step 3 and the rest of the recipe instructions.
  2. Dutch Oven: 6 quart or higher dutch oven or any large oven-safe pot with a lid (lid is crucial– see post!) No dutch oven? See post above for alternative.
  3. Yeast: If you don’t have instant yeast, you can use active-dry. I’ve never had a problem using active dry yeast in this recipe– and with no other changes needed. Works wonderfully!
  4. Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | Wooden Spoon | 2-cup Glass Measuring Cup | Dutch Oven
  5. Whole Wheat Flour: You can swap all-purpose flour for whole wheat flour. The bread will have a tougher and heartier texture, as expected. To maintain a chewy and softer texture, use half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour.
  6. Cranberries: Dried cranberries (or raisins!) are best for this wet dough. I haven’t tried this bread with fresh or frozen cranberries.
  7. Parchment Paper: If your parchment paper can only be heated to a certain temperature, bake the bread at that temperature. Bake the bread a little longer to compensate for the lower temperature.
  8. Reference my Baking with Yeast Guide for answers to common yeast FAQs.
  9. Recipe adapted from Red Star Yeast, method originally from Jim Lahey.

Gently stir all of the ingredients together:

How to make easy crusty no-knead bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

This will be a super sticky dough. Remember, do NOT be tempted to add more flour. It will stick to your hands. That’s nothing a quick wash can’t fix!

How to make easy crusty no-knead bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Let the dough rise at room temperature. This recipe is very forgiving. Any normal-ish room temperature is fine. You’ll know that the dough is finished rising when it has doubled in size and air bubbles have formed on top.

How to make easy crusty no-knead bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

The dough will still be super sticky after rising. That’s ok! Using lightly floured hands, form the sticky dough into a ball and place on a large piece of parchment paper. Allow to rest for 30 minutes, then score an X on top:

How to make easy crusty no-knead bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Bake! Eat! Enjoy!

How to make crusty no-knead cranberry walnut bread on sallysbakingaddiction.com

452 Comments

  1. This sounds great, but I’m not a fan of nuts. Whole Foods makes a cranberry ginger loaf that I love. Would I add candied ginger to the dough? Thnx!

    1. I don’t recommend it for this recipe. For best success (and so you don’t waste your time!), I recommend finding a recipe that’s formulated just for that type of flour.

  2. Hi! Thanks for sharing. I added 360ml water and it is very runny. It is sticky as described but a lot looser than I expected. It looks nothing like the picture before the risen dough. Does this sound right? Thank you 🙂

    1. If it doesn’t resemble the picture, add a little more flour– I recommend 1/4 cup (31g). The dough should be sticky, though.

  3. I read and reread this recipe to make sure I was seeing it right, then compared to your other no-knead breads, calling for only 1/2 t. yeast but 2 t. salt! I wanted to make it with gluten free flour using methods that work, like extra yeast and sugar, plus a little vinegar. I cut the salt to 1 1/2 t. and added a little more honey, but after 16 hours it was not “fermenty” so I mixed up and added another spoonful of yeast with a little warm water and a small amount of sugar. Twenty hours and I finally decided to get it into the oven where it still is for a few more minutes. What I did notice in tasting the dough is that it is horribly salty. I’m not hopeful that it will come out edible at all, but I will add an update later.

    1. Hi Beth! My artisan bread recipe is the only other no-knead bread recipe that calls for more yeast, but the same amount of salt. Make sure you’re using coarse salt– table salt will create a salty bread that lacks depth of flavor. I wouldn’t taste the raw dough because it will taste different, of course, then the baked bread.

      1. The bread was a little doughy in the middle, which is common with some of my breads. I baked it for 35 minutes at 425, then the additional 10 minutes, but it should have baked longer. You are right, the finished bread was not as salty tasting as the dough ( I used Himalayan sea salt), but I still made some cinnamon butter with a little honey mixed in to dip the bread in. I will probably try it again with the additional yeast and longer rise and bake time. For anyone wanting to try it, I used Namaste brand gluten free flour.

  4. We fell in love with the seasonal cranberry/walnut bread from Costco. This is so close. Followed the directions exactly (except used regular red star, couldn’t find platinum) …it’s perfect. Could I add more honey for a sweeter taste? How would I adjust the flour?

    1. Hi Lisa! You can add granulated sugar– that way you can use more of it without altering the bread’s texture. Try leaving out the honey and using 4-5 Tbsp of sugar.

    1. So glad you enjoyed this bread, Amanda! I use all-purpose flour here since it’s more readily available to most bakers. However, I love baking bread with bread flour and it can definitely be substituted with no other changes needed to the recipe.

  5. Can I use a AllClad 5qt stockpot with lid to bake this bread? My cast iron Dutch oven is so heavy it’s difficult to use with arthritis in hands. Can’t wait to try as I really like the Costco cranberry nut bread. Thank you.

    1. You can let the dough rest in the refrigerator overnight, but the cold air slows the fermentation. It will need to sit in the cold air for longer than 18 hours. I recommend letting it sit at room temperature.

  6. I have been wanting to try bread for awhile but have been very intimidated. Thank you for sharing such an easy first timer recipe, the directions were clear and easy to work with, the pictures helped a lot too. I’m currently waiting for my loaf to cool down to eat but I’m so excited.

  7. Hello, and thank you for another incredibly easy recipe to follow and replicate! A friend and I recently visited a restaurant/bakery where we purchased a loaf with similar flavors that she had been raving about to me. I wanted to re-create it to surprise her, and then I saw this post-perfect timing! I made just a few tiny changes: I used 1/3 white whole wheat flour, subbed pecans for walnuts, and used 1/4 cup of my sourdough starter in addition to a 1/4 tsp. of ‘insurance’ yeast. To accommodate my crazy schedule I split the long room temperature rise over two days, refrigerating in between, then shaped the loaf and refrigerated it again overnight. I baked the loaf per the recipe in a Lodge cast iron combo cooker after about an hour at room temperature (an indent made by poking my finger into it filled in slowly, which was my ‘readiness’ test), removed it from the baking vessel and gave it an extra couple of minutes straight on the oven rack at the end of the recommended bake time because my friend’s preference is a well-done crust. The finished loaf was a very deep golden brown – absolutely beautiful!
    Here are the comments I received via text when she discovered her surprise upon arriving home later that day – and I quote: “I am in LOVE with this bread! It’s unbelievable – better than any bakery or restaurant. You really rocked it – it’s delicious AND beautiful!
    “Hubby was taking too long to unlock the door. I couldn’t wait and it smelled amazing! I picked it up and ripped a chunk off it and took a bite right outside in the driveway! He took my piece for a bite and he didn’t give it back.”
    “I don’t just like it …I LOVE LOVE LOVE it.”
    Thanks, Sally, for helping me bring some joy to a dear, sweet friend who is always so generous and kind to me. Now I guess I’ll have to bake another this week so I can taste it, too!
    I have a feeling she and I will be making this wonderful recipe again and again.

  8. I came across this recipe after trying to find a way to recreate a cranberry walnut bread my 78 year old Dad could no longer get from Costco. Bread this easy is addictive to make! This week alone I’ve made the cranberry walnut, the jalapeño cheddar, a cinnamon raisin and a plain with a little rosemary. Your directions are foolproof- even for those, like me, who do not consider themselves bakers. I do have a Dutch oven and it worked beautifully. I feel so impressed with myself thanks to your wonderfully simple and delicious recipe. My family, friends and colleagues thank you as well since I cannot eat all this bread myself

  9. I started the dough last night and baked it this morning. We had it for lunch. It is much lighter than I thought it would be and we both loved it! Thanks for a great recipe.

  10. I have made this recipe several times using a cup each (instead of 3/4 cup) of craisins and walnuts, plus 1 cup of whole wheat and two cups of white flour plus 2 T flour. 2 tablespoons honey instead of 1. Shows recipe is flexible and forgiving. Thanks so much.

  11. we love the bread, but any recommendations on how to make this in a bread machine? I tried making once with above recipe but it didn’t turn as soft and chewy and didn’t rise much. we want it so that I mix all in the bread machine and next morning its baked and ready!

    1. I actually don’t recommend a bread machine for this particular recipe. It needs to sit undisturbed for 12-18 hours and then the baking method of using a dutch oven (or placing a pan of water in your oven as described in the post above), is what gives the bread it’s beautiful texture. I’m unsure of how to replicated that steamy environment in a bread machine.

      1. Thanks! Your recipe beats the bread machine! Love the chewy texture. We make it about twice a week and was hoping to make our life easier 🙂 thanks for the very quick reply!

  12. This bread is divine! I love to bake but bread/yeast is not my thing. I was so pleased that I tried this, the results were fantastic! Can’t wait to make it again. I was wondering though, orange flavour would be so nice with it. Do you think I could try adding orange zest with the cranberries and leave out the nuts? Has anyone tried this? How much would I add?

    1. Hi Janessa! The zest from 1 medium or large orange would be great! You can leave out the nuts. I’m so glad you tried and loved this bread!

    1. If it says only up to 420, then I wouldn’t use it. I use this one. It says up to 450, but I haven’t had an issue. I’m unsure of the exact bake time if you decide to lower your oven temperature.

  13. I’ve made this bread at least 2 times a week in the last 6 weeks. We dont bother with store bought bread anymore.
    Cranberry pecan as suggested. That was my starting point.
    I’ve made mango with pumpkin seeds and cherry with almonds.
    Every one of them have been delicious.

  14. I love this bread! I used a cast iron Dutch oven and parchment paper and the bottom of the bread was a little dark. What could I do to keep this from happening next time? Also if I wanted to make a cinnamon raisin bread how much cinnamon would I need to add? Thank you so much for this recipe!

    1. Hi Jann! This has happened before with my oven when it wasn’t heating evenly. It’s easy to fix, too. Lower your oven temperature by 25 degrees and lower your oven rack as well. The bake time will be a bit longer since you lowered the oven temperature. For cinnamon, I recommend at least 2 teaspoons.

      1. Thank you so much! I am so inspired by your recipes! Oddly enough the first recipe of yours I used was a yogurt popsicle recipe and they were great!

  15. Hi. I too love the Costco one but I want to make my own. They use wheat and rye flour. Can those be used instead on ap flour?

    1. Hi Pam! Due to their nature, both flours will create a denser bread. I haven’t tried this recipe with either, so I can’t give much advice. Let me know how it turns out!

  16. First one did in the Dutch Oven and came out great. About to put another one in, without the “Dutch Oven” method. Should the oven be set to 475F anyways? Seems a bit hot for an open bake?

    1. Went for it today. No Dutch Oven way. about 5-7 mins at 457F + 20 mins at 400F. Came out perfect. Also substituted honey for a molasses. It gave a bit color and a different taste. Perfect recipe and easy to make. Thanks!

  17. Thank you Sally for this recipe. It’s very forgiving indeed. I left it to rise for almost 24 hours before 2nd rise/baking. It turned out beautifully. It tastes just like the cranberry walnut bread we love from Henriettas Table in Cambridge. This will be my go to bread recipe from now on.

  18. The recipe works great. The shell is hard and crunchy. The internal is moist and flavorful. Thank you.
    I really like cranberry and walnut. I will try to use double portions of cranberry and walnut to see what happens. I have a question – I would like to make internal bread rise more or more volume like Costco’s. Do you have any suggestion? Maybe bread flour ?

    1. Hi Lake! Bread flour (to replace the AP flour) could definitely help give it a little more height and structure in the center. So glad you enjoy it.

  19. I made this bread recipe for the first time and it turned out just as the picture looked! I’ll be using the bread to make French toast tomorrow. I wish I could post a picture 🙂

  20. Can I bake this at 350F since that is the max that I have on my compact oven.
    If so, how many minutes vs the 475F recipe temp.?

  21. I loved this bread…I used bread flour, cranberries, hazelnuts, some orange zest and golden syrup instead of honey…and it was amazing. Thank you for sharing your recipe

  22. I am very much a rookie in the bread making department so I followed this recipe to the letter. Wow! What an amazing result. You could have used my loaf for the pictures. Absolutely delicious and even better when you slice it and toast it. Up next…jalapeño and cheese loaf.

  23. I’m one of those weirdos who learned to make bread early on and have always enjoyed making it! I love your recipes due to the simple fact you nice you understand the rules- it’s soooo much fun to break them all. Thanks for so many resources to experiment with.

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