Today, I’m thrilled to share with you my beloved air fryer bread recipe, along with some personal twists and turns I encountered along the way.
In the UK, high-quality bread is a rarity and we often find ourselves paying a hefty £3-5 for a loaf of high-quality bread. But what if I told you that, with an air fryer, you could not only cut down the cost but also add a dash of fun and creativity to your baking routine?
As someone who loves to experiment in the kitchen, the challenge of baking bread in an air fryer was irresistible. I remember the excitement of seeing that first loaf emerge, golden and aromatic
This recipe is my tried and tested guide to making that perfect loaf, suited for both seasoned bakers and newbies. I’ve included clear, step-by-step instructions, and a few tricks I’ve learned, and I’m eager to hear about your experiences too!
Here’s What I Will Cover
Air Fryer Bread Basics
Air fryers work by circulating hot air around the food, creating a quick and even cooking environment.
This makes them perfect for bread baking as they can mimic the consistent, dry heat of a traditional oven, giving your bread a beautiful crust and soft interior.
Here are a few things to consider when choosing an air fryer for bread:
- Size: Make sure it fits the size of your bread.
- Basket Shape: Square or rectangular baskets are more bread-friendly.
- Preheat Capabilities: A quick preheating air fryer is your best friend.
What You Need
The ingredients are simple, and you probably already have them in your pantry. Here’s what I use for a basic loaf
List of Ingredients for Basic Air Fryer Bread
- Flour: 400g (I prefer bread flour* but all-purpose flour will do as well, read more in this section)
- Yeast: 2 tsp (Instant or active dry yeast, I use Allison)
- Sugar: 1 tsp (Helps feed the yeast)
- Salt: 2 tsp (For flavor)
- Water: 300ml (Lukewarm, for activating the yeast)
- Butter or Olive Oil: 20 grams melted butter or 1 tsp olive oil (For dough elasticity)
*A side note on flour choices:
If you’re using all-purpose flour instead of bread flour, be prepared for a slightly denser texture.
This can also mean your bread might need a tad more time in the air fryer to get that perfect bake.
All-purpose flour has less protein content which means doesn’t form as much gluten as bread flour, so it doesn’t trap air as well, leading to a denser loaf.
- Air Fryer: The star of the show. Make sure it has enough capacity for the size of the bread you want to bake.
- Mixing Bowls: For preparing and resting the dough.
- Measuring Cups, spoons, and/or kitchen scale: For accurate ingredient measurements.
- Dough Scraper (Optional): Helps in handling and shaping the dough.
- Parchment Paper (Optional): Useful for lining the air fryer basket to prevent sticking.
- Kitchen Cloth or Towel: For covering the dough during rising.
Air Fryer Bread: Step-by-Step Directions
Step 1: Mixing the Dough
- Combine the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
- Add melted butter and gradually add 300ml lukewarm water mixing until a dough forms.
- If the dough is too dry, add 10-20ml more water; if too wet, add a bit more flour.
Step 2: Kneading the Dough
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead for about 3-4 minutes until it’s smooth and elastic.
- Tip: Knead by pushing the dough away with the heel of your hand, then folding it back on itself. Repeat this process, rotating the dough as you go.
Step 3: Resting the Dough
- Place the dough in a warm place and cover it with a kitchen towel.
- Let it rest in a warm place for about 1 hour or until it doubles in size.
- Once risen, gently punch down the dough to release air bubbles, do some extra kneading, and put it in a lightly oiled bowl for the next 30 minutes (so it can grow vertically now)
- Tip: Avoid drafts and keep the dough in a consistently warm area for best-rising results I usually keep it on the cutting board at room temperature
Step 4: Shaping the Dough
- Shape the dough to fit your air fryer basket. Round, oval, or even a simple loaf shape works well.
- Tip: Don’t overwork the dough while shaping; gentle handling maintains its light texture.
Step 5: Setting Up the Air Fryer
- Preheat the air fryer to 200°C (400°F) for about 5 minutes.
- Optionally line the basket with parchment paper to prevent sticking and place the shaped dough inside.
Step 6: Baking the Bread
- Bake the bread for about 15 minutes at 200°C (400°F) then for another 30 minutes at slightly lower temperature of 180°C (360°F), or until it’s golden brown
My Personal Twists and Tips
- First Attempt: My first loaf was a bit too dense. I realized I hadn’t let the dough rise enough. Patience is key!
- Too Brown, Too Soon: On my third try, the top started browning too quickly. A simple foil cover did the trick.
- Shape Matters: I experimented with different shapes – a round loaf has a certain rustic charm, but a rectangular one is much better for sandwiches in my opinion.
Tips for Best Results
- Avoid opening the air fryer too often, as this can cause temperature fluctuations.
- Cover the bread with foil to prevent burning if it is browning too quickly.
- Whole Wheat Bread: Replace half of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour (I use Allison’s very strong wholemeal bread flour if I want the bread to be wholemeal).
- Gluten-Free? No Problem: Swap the regular flour with your favorite gluten-free blend. Keep an eye on the moisture level, as these flours can behave differently.
- Herbed or Cheese Bread: Add herbs like rosemary or thyme, or fold in grated cheese during the shaping step.
Troubleshooting Common Problems I Was Facing
It happened to me once when I was in a rush. My fix? I just increased the baking time a bit and lowered the temperature. It lets the bread cook evenly without charring the crust
Too Crusty Exterior
If your bread’s outer shell is turning into armor, try lowering the temp and using some foil as a shield for part of the baking time. It keeps the crust tender while the inside bakes to perfection.
This could be due to over-proofing. Let the dough rise only until it’s just about doubled in size. Over-proofed dough loses its structure and collapses when baked.
Bread Not Rising
Ensure the yeast is fresh and activated. The water temperature for mixing with yeast should be lukewarm, not hot. Check the expiry date of your yeast and store it properly.
To prevent the bread from sticking to the air fryer basket, line it with parchment paper. Make sure the paper is slightly larger than the bottom of the basket to protect the sides of the bread.
After baking, let the bread cool for a few minutes in the basket before gently lifting it out. This helps to release the bread more easily.
Serving and Storage
- Fresh and Warm: Serve the bread fresh and warm from the air fryer for the best experience.
- Pairings: Pair with soups, stews, or salads. It’s also perfect for sandwiches.
- Toppings: Try it with butter, jam, honey, or your favorite spread.
- Cool Completely: Allow the bread to cool completely before storing.
- Airtight Container: Store in an airtight container or bread box.
- Refrigeration: Avoid refrigerating as it dries out the bread. If you must refrigerate, wrap it well in cling film or foil.
- Freezing: Bread can be frozen for up to 3 months. Slice before freezing for easy portioning.
Some Questions You May Have (FAQ Section)
Can I bake any bread recipe in an air fryer?
Most bread recipes can be adapted for an air fryer. However, you might need to adjust the size of the loaf and the baking time.
Do I need to preheat my air fryer before baking bread?
Yes, preheating helps achieve a consistent baking environment. Preheat to the recommended temperature for 5 minutes.
Can I open the air fryer to check on the bread during baking?
Try to minimize opening the air fryer as it can cause temperature fluctuations. If necessary, do it quickly and carefully.
What’s the best way to tell if my bread is done?
The bread should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped (especially from the bottom)
If you like the recipe Pin it to your Pinterest board so you can always can have it handy
I’d Love to Hear from You!
- Have you tried this recipe or a variation of it?
- Any fun shapes or flavors you experimented with?
- Share your experiences, photos, or even your tips in the comments below!