Easy No-Knead Garlic Focaccia
This Easy No-Knead Garlic Focaccia recipe is shockingly good! Chewy on the inside, crispy on the outside. The secret is an overnight rise!
If you’re like me and you missed the whole pandemic bread craze, because bread, frankly intimidates you, then try this recipe! It’ll help break the ice and honestly the amazing low effort results are worth it.
Plus, focaccia is one of those breads that tastes great, you can flavor it with anything you like and it’s great on it’s own or in your bread basket with your fave meal.
Before we get stuck into the recipe, it’s worth noting that the slow rise technique used in this recipe is phenomenal. I’m totally converted to letting things rest in the fridge overnight. In this recipe it helps create way more air bubbles which results in a chewy, fluffy and pillowy bread!
Let’s Talk Slow Rise: Just sciency things.
Letting the dough rise slowly is the secret to getting an amazing Focaccia. That and using plenty of oil! The slow rise involves putting the dough in the fridge for its first rise rather than at room temperature. This slows the rising down and results in smaller air lot’s more air pockets that are smaller than dough left to rise at room temperature on the first rise. The second rise helps make these smaller air pockets go into overdrive! It results in a chewy, soft and pillowy bread dough with nice big air pockets which gives this focaccia it’s characteristic look!
What I love about this technique is that it’s a very hands off and low effort process with super impressive results.
The second reason why this works is because of the high ratio of water to flour in this dough. It feels sticky when mixing together at first and like somethings gone wrong, but it helps make the dough light enough that it rises in the fridge nice and slowly.
Focaccia: the easiest bread to make!
There are so many things to love about this crispy, chewy, easy Focaccia recipe! Although it’s not a quick recipe, most of the time you just let it do it’s own thing, so it’s hands off!
- No-knead – that’s right. There’s no need to knead and it still comes out nice and chewy!
- Simple ingredients and equipment – If you’re like me and bread kind of intimidates you, then this is a great starting point! Frankly, it’s the only bread recipe you should know how to make, and it accompanies any meal. The ingredients are few and simple and you don’t need any special equipment. No stand mixer!
- Make it your own! – you can top this with anything you like or knead your favorite flavorings into the dough before baking.
- Soft, pillowy and chewy! – the texture of this focaccia is the star of the show. It’s chewy, tasty and crispy on the outside. It’s my favorite thing about this recipe next to how easy it is to make!
- Use it as sandwich bread – This makes great burger and grilled sandwich bread. Especial when it’s grilled in a sandwich maker.
- Easy to freeze and re-heat! – Wrap tightly in plastic wrap for months and reheat in the oven for a quick and easy bread accompaniment to your next meal.
Make it your own!
This recipe will bend to pretty much any type of topping combo your mind can come up with. Here are some of my faves:
- Olives – put on before baking.
- Sundried tomatoes – put on before baking.
- Fresh cherry tomatoes – put on before baking.
- Basil – weave into the dough and top with fresh basil after baking.
- Sliced potato – put on before baking and drizzle with plenty of oil.
- Pesto – weave into the dough and top before baking.
- Sliced fig – put on for the final 15 minutes of baking time.
- Onion – weave into dough.
- Sliced peach – put on before baking and drizzle with oil.
- Your favorite cheese! – put on for the final 15 minutes of baking time.
The topping options are endless and you combine toppings to come up with something tasty and unique!
Garlic Focaccia ingredients are simple!
Note: the whole recipe, including the ingredient quantities, can be found at the bottom of this page – just scroll down to the bottom, or click the ‘Jump to Recipe’ button at the top of this post.
- All-purpose flour – you can use bread flour for a chewier and crispier bread but you still get a great result from using regular all-purpose, also known as plain flour.
- Sugar – I used regular granulated sugar.
- Salt – I used fine salt.
- Instant dry yeast – is sold in the baking isle of your supermarket. It is a dry form of yeast that when activated with wet ingredients creates gas and helps baked goods rise.
- Warm water – also known as lukewarm water sits between 36-40C/98-105F on a thermometer and helps provide the best temperature for yeast to activate.
- Olive oil – I used extra virgin olive oil. Don’t be light handed with the oil. It ads so much flavor!
- Flaky sea salt – I used the Maldon brand one, but any brand will do. You could even use something like smoked salt.
- Garlic – If you’re in Australia, buy Aussie grown garlic. It tastes way better than imported garlic. It costs a little more but seriously, way better and when cooked in this bread it goes sweet. Just a heads up, your garlic may slightly burn when this bread is baking. Check it at the 30-minute mark and then if it’s looking a little dark, loosely cover the bread with foil.
How to make Garlic Focaccia!
- Mix your dry ingredients together.
- Add your warm water.
- Use your hands to mix until a wet stick dough forms
- Drizzle with a generous amount of olive oil.
- Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 8-72 hours. More time in the fridge leads to a tastier bread.
- The dough will triple in size.
- Punch the dough down with wet hands. Pull one end of the dough up.
- Fold it over itself. Do this 4 times. Let the dough rest 10-15 minutes until it comes to room temp.
- Oil your baking tin really well.
- Add the room temperature dough and gently stretch out. Doesn’t matter if it’s not all the way to the corner it’ll spread with the second rise.
- Allow to rise for a second time. 1-2 hours until doubled in size.
- Cover with more olive oil, add toppings.
- Use your fingers to puncture the dough.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes. The longer you bake, the crispier and darker it is.
Tips and Tricks For Recipe Success!
- Weigh your ingredients by weight and not using cups. I used kitchen scales to measure my flour and yes, water because it’s far more accurate to ger consistent, great results every time you bake.
- Don’t skip the fridge rise, it helps develop the flavor in the focaccia and makes it really chewy which is what you want!
- Cover your focaccia while baking if you’ve added toppings like garlic or potato to prevent them from burning. Do this after the bread has been baking for 30 minutes.
- Don’t skimp on the oil, it adds so much flavor and it will prevent your bread from sticking to the baking tin. And make sure you use a good quality extra virgin olive oil!
- Let your dough come to room temperature before stretching in the tin. It will prevent it from tearing. It can take anywhere between 10-20 minutes depending on the weather.
- For a flatter focaccia, bake in a half sheet pan.
Frequently Asked Questions about Garlic Focaccia
What does it taste like?
Depending on the toppings you might use, this focaccia is perfectly salted, rich from the oil but still light and fluffy which makes it perfect for eating on it’s own or elevating pretty much any meal!
How do I store this?
Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 3 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months! Reheat in the oven or a sandwich press once it’s thawed at room temperature.
Can I skip the rising time in the fridge?
Technically you can. Are you gonna get the same fluffy, chewy and crispy results? In the famous words of wordsmith Lydia Schiavello: Nope.
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Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @thescranline on Facebook and Instagram!
Easy No-Knead Garlic Focaccia
- 3 1/2 cups (525 g) all-purpose flour (bread flour for a chewier bread)
- 2 tsp (8 g) granulated sugar
- 2 tsp (8 g) salt
- 2 tsp (7 g) instant dry yeast (see notes)
- 2 1/4 cups (470 g) water, lukewarm (36-40C/98-105F on a thermometer)
- 8 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- Flaky sea salt
- 8 cloves garlic halved (optional)
- Note: For best results. This recipe should be weighed using kitchen scales. Yes, even the water. For Googles sake I’ve included cup measurements. Ignore them, get scales!
- Add the flour, salt, sugar and yeast to a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
- To a jug combine 1 cup boiling water and 1 1/4 cups of cold water to get lukewarm water.
- Add the water to the dry ingredients and use your hand to mix until a very wet and sticky dough forms. Use a spatula to scrape the side and make sure everything (including any ingredients at the bottom of the bowl) have been mixed in properly.
- Cover the dough with 2 tbsp olive oil. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in the fridge for 8 hours or overnight. Can be left in the fridge for up to 72 hours for optimum flavor!
- Take the dough out of the fridge and unwrap (keep your plastic wrap!) and use wet hands to stretch the dough up and then over itself. Do this on each 4 sides. This will help develop gluten strands to make the dough even chewier! Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 20 minutes to let it come to room temperature.
- Preheat a fan forced oven to 200C/400F (220C/430F for no fan).
- Grease a 9x13-inch baking tin with 2 tbsp of olive oil or a half sheet baking tray with a 1-inch rim with olive oil. Obviously, the half sheet baking tray will result in a flatter focaccia, perfect for dips! It’ll also serve more people!
- Pour the room temperature dough on top of your baking dish and use your hands to spread or stretch out as much as you can. If it’s not perfectly at each corner, it’s ok! Cover with plastic wrap and let it rest between 1-2 hours in a warm spot. It will puff up, rise and bubble. Once risen, drizzle with 2 tbsp of olive oil and sprinkle with rosemary. Use your fingers to indent the dough. Bubbles will appear. You can pop those or leave them. Add garlic into some of the indents.
- Bake for 40 minutes or until golden and crispy. Sprinkle with sea salt flakes and serve warm or cold.