Perfect for anyone who needs a fresh loaf in a hurry, easy enough for all for new bakers!
Self raising flour bread
Can self raising flour be used for bread? Yes, absolutely! The resulting bread is a lovely rustic loaf that you can rustle up with just four ingredients.
This self raising flour bread recipe produces a no yeast loaf that is similar to soda bread but without that slightly bitter taste, using regular everyday flour – no need for strong bread flour!
It’s perfect for a quick lunch, delicious warm and fresh from the oven slathered with butter. Make it whenever you run out of your usual bread or when you want something fresh to serve to unexpected guests.
This sort of bread doesn’t last long in our home, but if you have any left over, slice and toast it the next day.
Why make this self raising flour bread
- It’s quick and easy.
- No kneading.
- No yeast.
- No rising/proving time needed. Just mix, shape and bake.
- Just four ingredients, and one of those is optional!
What is self raising flour?
Self raising flour is just plain flour with added raising agents – usually sodium bicarbonate and calcium phosphate, which are the active ingredients of baking powder. By By using a mix of these two ingredients you don’t need to add something acidic to get a loaf or bake to rise.
If you baking with baking soda as the only raising agent you need to add something acidic to react with the baking soda so the mixture rises. This is why you need (acidic) buttermilk to make a soda bread.
Ingredients for self raising flour bread
Only four ingredients!
- White self raising flour – This needs to be reasonably fresh and not out of date for this bread recipe. If your flour has been in the cupboard too long, the raising agents may have oxidised and won’t work. Make scones, cakes etc. to use flour while it is still in date. Treat yourself! We are not using bread flour for this recipe!
- Salt – Ordinary cooking salt, or if you prefer, posh sea salt.
- Milk – Full, semi skimmed or skimmed, dairy or plant based. Fresh or made up from dried powder! It doesn’t matter. Just use what you have.
- Oil – This makes the loaf last longer and is optional! Bread is best enjoyed fresh, though. This loaf is best fresh from the oven, or toasted on day 2.
How to make self raising flour bread
Step 1 – Gather your ingredients. Heat the oven to 190°C Fan (210°C regular) / 375°F /Gas Mark 6. Put a baking sheet or stone in the oven to heat. Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl.
Step 2 – Add the milk and oil, and mix the ingredients in the bowl until they come together into a rough dough.
Step 3 – Turn the dough out onto the work surface and give it a very quick knead until smooth. It doesn’t need a lot of work.
Step 4 – Form into a flat disc, no more than about 1½”/3 cm thick. Important! Your dough must not be too thick. If it is, the bread won’t rise or bake through properly.
Step 5 – Score the top in a deep cross, cutting most of the way through the dough. As you can see, it’s formed into a round pancake, about 1½” (3 cm) thick, and deeply scored with a cross across the top.
Put the dough on a silicone baking sheet or piece of baking parchment. Then place in the oven on the hot baking stone or sheet and cook for about 35 minutes. The bread will still be quite pale once cooked. Don’t expect, or wait for it to be golden brown.
Step 6 – The bread will rise as it cooks. Check the bread is cooked by flipping it off the baking sheet and giving it a tap. If it is done, it will sound hollow. Remove from the oven, and allow to cool enough to enjoy!
Self Raising Flour Bread – FAQs, Hints and Tips
What happens if you add yeast to self raising flour?
There’s no point in trying this, as you don’t leave the dough to rise. This is a no yeast bread.
Can I use bread flour?
Self raising flour is usually everyday flour for baking pastry, cakes etc. It is a different product from bread flour which has a higher amount of gluten.
Can I make a vegan self raising flour bread?
Absolutely yes! Use your favourite soy or nut milk.
Can I make this gluten free?
Sadly not – I have tried with a straight swap to gluten free flour and it wasn’t successful. Let me know if you manage it.
Can I freeze self raising flour bread?
Yes, this self raising flour bread freezes well. I like to slice it, wrap in a plastic bag, freeze, then toast from frozen.
Can I make self raising flour bread using cup measures?
Yes! But never mix cups and metric measurements. I have included conversions in the recipe below, but please check using your favourite trusted conversion tool. I scale my conversions to give rounded numbers so the amounts are never a direct conversion.
Having said that, I recommend buying kitchen scales. They are inexpensive and will result in far better baking as they are so much more accurate than using cups. Once you get used to them, weighing ingredients will become second nature.
Troubleshooting – mistakes to avoid
This recipe really works. We have made this loaf successfully many many times. Here are some of the common problems people have how to make sure you avoid them.
- The measurements are wrong – I always weigh my ingredients, cup conversions are not always accurate. If the dough is too dry, add more liquid. If the dough is too wet, add more flour.
- The dough is over-handled – it needs a light touch and gentle shaping.
- The dough is too thick and hasn’t been scored. Those score marks are not just for decoration. The bread will not rise and it will not cook in the middle without them.
- The oven is at the wrong temperature. Too hot and the outside will burn before the inside is cooked. Too cool and the bread won’t rise. Most oven thermostats are inaccurate and will be consistently too hot or too cold. If you plan on baking more than once a month, buy an oven thermometer and adjust the thermostat to reflect the real temperature.
- Your flour had been in the cupboard for too long and the raising agent had gone off. Self raising flour lasts well, but it will eventually go stale.
Because the loaf doesn’t have much time to rise, your no yeast bread will never have a particularly light texture. This self raising flour soda bread style recipe will always result in a hearty, rustic loaf that’s at its best fresh from the oven and dripping with butter.
Self Raising Flour Bread
- 400 g plain flour (regular white self raising flour)
- 1 tsp salt
- 250 ml milk
- 1 tbs oil (optional)
- Heat the oven to 190°C Fan (210°C regular) / 375°F / GM 6. Place a baking stone or heavy baking sheet in the oven to heat.
- Mix the self raising flour and salt in a large bowl.
- Add the milk (and oil, if using), and stir together to form a dough.
- Turn the dough out onto your work surface and knead briefly until the dough has a uniform consistency.
- Shape the dough into a round disc, about an inch to an inch and a half (about 3 cm) thick. Score the top deeply with an X. This is important! Don't make a round ball of dough as it won't cook in the middle.
- Bake on the hot stone or baking sheet for about 35 minutes until risen and the crust is hard. (This loaf won't turn a deep gold so don't wait too long to check it.) When ready, it should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- Important! We cannot stress enough that the dough needs to be a flat pancake not more than 1.5" (3 cm) deep when it goes into the oven, or it will not cook properly in the middle.
- If you don't have milk, you can make some up with powdered milk, mix up yogurt and water. You can even use water with a spoon of oil or melted butter or spread.
- Delicious served freshly baked for breakfast with our homemade Seville orange marmalade