Focaccia Bread Recipe (VIDEO)
Focaccia Bread with a crisp chewy crust, airy soft center, and amazing garlic rosemary topping. Watch the video tutorial and see how easy it is to make homemade Focaccia (and you don’t have to wait overnight).
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Focaccia Bread Video Tutorial:
There’s nothing like freshly baked Focaccia bread. This one was inspired by our favorite Chicken Bacon Avocado Sandwich on Focaccia. It bakes up thick and beautiful so it’s perfect as a side with dinner or sliced in half for sandwiches.
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What is Focaccia?
Focaccia (pronounced fuh-kaa-chuh) is a classic Italian bread. The name focaccia is derived from the Roman “panis focacius,” which means “hearth bread” indicating that it was originally baked in coals back in Roman times.
It is considered a flatbread and the texture is similar to pizza dough. It’s baked with a generous amount of olive oil in the pan which creates a crisp edge. It can be made a hundred different ways by changing up the toppings that sit in the classic dimples on top.
Ingredients for Italian Focaccia
The key to making great focaccia is using a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil which creates a crispy and flavorful crust.
- Flour– use all-purpose flour or bread flour for focaccia.
- Yeast – get one packet (7grams) of instant yeast. The label should say “quick-rise” or “rapid rise.” The right yeast is key to making this bread in about 4 hours from start to finish.
- Honey – helps activate the yeast and balances flavor
- Salt – we use fine sea salt for the dough and sauce then sprinkle kosher salt over the top before baking.
- Water – use filtered warm water (105˚-115˚F).
The Best Topping for Focaccia
While the dough is proofing, I like to make the topping early so the oil gets infused with wonderful garlic and rosemary flavor which soaks into the dough dimples. Combine the oil, water, garlic, rosemary, and salt, and vigorously whisk to combine.
How to Make Focaccia
- Proof Yeast – Combine water, honey, and yeast and let sit 5-7 minutes until foamy.
- Make the Dough – Combine flour and salt then mix in the yeast mixture with a wooden spoon until a moist mass of dough forms without streaks of flour. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and mix it in with your hands. Cover and rest for 30 minutes.
- Develop Gluten – Perform 4 stretches and folds, allowing the dough to rest covered for 30 minutes between each set. Turn the bowl between each stretch and fold and pull the dough gently without tearing it. See the video tutorial for a demonstration.
Pro Tip: When handling moist dough, dip hands in water to keep the dough from sticking to your hands.
To Form Italian Focaccia Bread
- Mold to the Pan – after the fourth stretch and fold, immediately transfer it to a 9×13 pan coated with 1/4 cup olive oil. Turn the dough and gently stretch to the edges. If it is difficult to stretch, rest 15 minutes and try again then cover and rest 45-60 minutes.
- Dimples – dip fingers in water and poke fingertips into dough going straight down in a quick motion like playing the piano. Go over the dough 2-3 times to create plenty of dimples.
- Add Toppings and Bake – Re-whisk topping then drizzle it evenly over the top of the dough. Bake at 450˚F for 22-25 minutes until golden brown. I aim for 25 minutes for a crisp crust. Immediately transfer bread to a wire rack and rest 10 minutes before slicing.
Focaccia is a flat bread with a texture that is similar to good pizza dough.
This recipe produces a crisp chewy crust with a soft and airy center. If your bread ends up dense or tough, be sure to measure flour correctly and check that your yeast is still active.
There could be a few reasons – use a thermometer to ensure your water temperature is 105-115˚F so you don’t kill your yeast. Check that your yeast isn’t expired – if it doesn’t form a foamy later in the first step, discard and start over with fresh yeast. Also, measure flour correctly.
You can use a jelly roll pan for flat bread, or cut the recipe in half and bake in a 9-10″ cast iron skillet or cake pan.
Yes. Bread flour and all-purpose flour can be substituted equally in this recipe.
How to Serve Focaccia
- Side Dish – serve focaccia like you would dinner rolls. We love to pair it with Zuppa Toscana or Italian Wedding Soup.
- Sandwich Bread – when baked in a 9×13 pan, the focaccia is easy to slice in half for sandwiches. It makes the best ever BLT Sandwich and of course our Chicken Club Sandwiches.
- With a Dipping Sauce – you’ll love this restaurant-style bread dip: In a small dish, combine equal parts extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar with a sprinkle of black pepper.
- Room Temperature – loosely cover focaccia in plastic wrap for 2 days at room temperature.
- Freezing: When the bread has cooled to room temperature, wrap in several layers of plastic wrap and freeze for 2 months. Freeze the bread the same day it’s made and it will taste fresh when thawed.
- Thawing: Thaw at room temperature or speed thaw in the microwave at 15-second intervals until no longer frozen.
- Reheating: Once thawed, place on a baking sheet and bake uncovered in oven at 350˚F for 8 minutes, or in an air fryer at 350˚F for 3-4 minutes until warmed through.
I hope you’re inspired to make homemade Focaccia bread. It will make you feel like a pro baker and it’s really simple with very little active time.
More Bread Recipes
If you love this Focaccia bread, then you won’t want to miss these bread recipes.
- Crusty French Bread
- Cheesy Garlic Bread
- Dutch Oven Seed Bread
- No-Knead Bread Recipe
- Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
Focaccia Bread Recipe
Focaccia Dough Ingredients:
- Proof the yeast: Pour warm water into a measuring cup and stir in 1 tsp honey. Stir in 1 packet of yeast and proof for 5-7 minutes or until surface is foamy.
- Make the Dough: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 3 3/4 cups flour and 1 1/2 tsp salt. Pour in your yeast mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until no dry flour remains and a sticky dough mass forms. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and use your hands to work the oil into the dough until fully absorbed. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and rest at room temperature for 30 minutes until visibly puffed.
- Make the Topping: In a small bowl, combine 2 Tbsp oil, 2 Tbsp water, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1 1/2 tsp finely chopped rosemary, and 1/2 tsp salt. Whisk vigorously until well combined and set aside
- Develop Gluten: Once dough is rested, use the stretch and fold method to develop gluten strands (see video for a demonstration). Dip your hands in water to prevent sticking and do four stretches and folds: Pull up one corner of the dough gently without tearing the dough then fold it over onto itself. Rotate the bowl and continue this process 3 more items. Cover with plastic wrap and rest 30 minutes at room temp. Perform 3 more stretches and folds, letting it rest covered for 30 minutes each time. Right after the last stretch and fold, transfer to an oiled baking pan.
- Mold to the Pan: Pour 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil into a NON-STICK 9×13 baking pan to coat the bottom. Transfer the dough to the oiled pan and turn to coat in oil. Gently stretch the dough to the edges. If it has difficulty stretching, cover and let it rest 15 minutes before working dough to the edges. Cover and proof 45-60 minutes until well risen and puffy.
- Create Dimples: Dip hands into cold water and use your fingertips to poke into the focaccia, going almost through the dough. It should be a quick motion, like pushing keys on a piano. Go over the dough a couple of times to get a generous amount of dimples. Release any big air bubbles trapped under the dough by gently lifting the dough at the edge.
- Add Toppings and Bake: Re-whisk the topping if it has separated then drizzle evenly over the top. Sprinkle kosher salt or flaky sea salt over the top of the bread and bake at 450˚F for 22-25 minutes until golden brown (we prefer 25 minutes for a crisp edge). Immediately transfer to a wire rack to cool so the base doesn’t steam soften and let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Cut into squares to serve or slice lengthwise for sandwiches.