Dry Texture

Here are some helpful solutions for the common causes:

  • Bread was overbaked
    • Set the timer for the shortest period of time in the baking range. To check the bread for doneness, remove the bread from the pan and tap the bottom or sides. If it sounds hollow, the bread has finished baking. Leaving the bread in the oven too long will dry out bread.
    • If the bread has finished baking before the minimum time stated in the recipe, the oven temperature may not be correct. To insure the correct temperature each time you bake, always use an oven thermometer. Place it in the center of the oven. Adjust oven dial up or down to correct the oven temperature.
  • Ratio of dry ingredients to liquids was too high
    • Too much flour makes dough too stiff to rise properly, creating a dry texture. A range of flour is always given in yeast bread recipes because flours vary in moisture content, reacting in different ways depending on the time of year, weather conditions, etc.
    • Be careful measuring flour. When flour is "scooped" into the measuring cup directly from the container, it compresses or becomes packed. This means you will be adding more flour than called for in the recipe. Spoon flour from the container into the measuring cup and use a metal spatula or the flat side of a knife to level the flour even with the top of the cup.
    • Add about two-thirds of the flour called for in the recipe. The partial addition of flour gives the baker greater control. The results will be a thick, rough, lumpy batter not stiff enough to hold its shape. Gradually stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a stiff, but not dry dough. The secret is to add just enough flour to keep the dough from being sticky.
    • Add as little flour as possible when kneading the dough.
  • Allowed to rise too long before baking

    Once loaf is shaped, the second rising period is much shorter than the first (20 to 60 minutes). Make sure loaf doesn't rise too long before baking – it should only double in size. If it rises too much, the dough will collapse on itself during baking and will have a dense, coarse or dry texture.

  • High altitudes cause faster evaporation of liquid and quicker drying out of baked products

    Because of the drier air at altitudes over 2,500 feet, it is often necessary to use less flour and more liquid. Like all yeast breads, however, the exact amounts will depend on weather conditions, the time of year, etc. Also, wrap yeast breads as soon as they have cooled completely, before the dry air dries them out. Learn more about High-Altitude Baking.

  • Incorrect storage after baking

    Wrap cooled loaf in plastic wrap, aluminum foil, airtight container or place in plastic bag and store at room temperature. Since no preservatives are used in home baking, baked products tend to dry out quickly and should be consumed in 1 to 2 days. Do not refrigerate. Refrigeration pulls moisture from bread, which speeds up the staling process and causes bread to dry out. Freeze any unused portions in an airtight container up to three months.