My bread machine broke. I made 3 different batches of bread over the course of several days and they wouldn’t rise. I kept thinking it was my yeast. The yeast wasn’t expired, but I thought maybe it was defunct (like that ever happens). I went and bought some different yeast and made a 4th batch…ummm, it didn’t rise either. Maybe I’m defunct! But I started doing the math and guess what? My bread machine is TWENTY years old and I realized I had pushed it beyond its limits and it finally petered out. Can you believe it’s lasted me that long? So, I gave it its last rights and tossed it. I might have shed a tear.
Now I’m saving my pennies for a new one. In the meantime, I transferred my efforts from the bread machine to the Crock Pot. Didn’t I tell you how much I love my new Crock Pot? I’m totally obsessed with it. I mean, in the short amount of time I’ve had it, I’ve made BBQ’d Pulled Pork, Sloppy Joes, my amazing Roast Beef, my 5-star Beef Stroganoff, incredible Fall-Off-The-Bone Spare Ribs, and now this Classic White Bread!
Remember when I did the Artisan Bread In The Crock Pot? It was completely amazing, too, but it was made with pre-made dough. Many of you wanted a made-from-scratch recipe and I’ve conquered it! I’m doing the happy dance and am proud to present you with this recipe.
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (or 0.25 ounce envelope)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup lukewarm water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
- Egg wash: 1 egg plus 1 teaspoon water
- 1 tablespoon butter, melted
- IMPORTANT: Do NOT pre-heat your slow cooker.
- In a small bowl, combine the yeast, 1/4 cup warm water, and 1 teaspoon sugar. Let set for 10 minutes while it does its own thing and foams.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the egg, oil, 1 cup lukewarm water, salt, sugar, and yeast mixture and beat with an electric mixer on low for about 2 minutes making sure to scrape the sides down as you go.
- Next, add 3 to 3 1/2 cups of flour to the mixture and continue beating with the electric mixer on low until it is well incorporated and gets “gummy”. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and add a little flour at a time while kneading by hand until the dough becomes smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes). Keep in mind that the dough will be a little sticky. This is normal. Form into a ball.
- Line a 5-quart slow cooker with parchment paper. Place the ball of dough in the center of the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high heat for 2+ hours. Not all Crock Pots are the same, so after 1 1/2 hours, check your bread for readiness. The bread will feel firm when you gently press down on the top. If it isn’t done, check it every 30 minutes for readiness. NOTE: It will not be brown on top. That’s normal. Remove when done. Also note, some slow cookers cook unevenly. Mine does. So after an hour, I grab the edges of my parchment paper and gently rotate it 180 degrees so it cooks evenly.
- As mentioned, you’ll notice your bread top will not be brown. If you like a soft crust, leave the bread as is, remove and brush with melted butter. If you like a crispier crust, turn your broiler on high. Brush the top of the bread with egg wash, if desired. Place the loaf on a cookie sheet under the broiler on the middle rack for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with melted butter.
- Let the bread cool completely before slicing.
Recipe inspired by Stephanie Ashcraft and Janet Eyring of
“101 More Things To Do With A Slow Cooker”
Other Slow Cooker Breads You Might Want to Try: