recipe

Pita Bread: the easy recipe for a fluffy, delicious homemade pita bread

Total time: 40 Min + Resting Time
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 8 people
By Cookist
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Ingredients
Lukewarm water
1 cup
Active Dry Yeast
2 1/4 tsp
Sugar
1/2 tsp
All-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups
Extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp
Salt
1 1/2 tsp
Wheat flour
1/4 cup

If you've been searching for the easiest way to make pita bread at home, look no further than this recipe. Also called pitta in British English, homemade pita bread is soft, fluffy yeast-leavened round flatbread from the Middle East and Mediterranean area.

It's a million times tastier than anything you'll buy in the supermarket and the best part, it's super easy to make. You only need few ingredients for making this warm, fragrant pita bread recipe – sugar, olive oil, salt, wheat flour, all-purpose flour, warm water and dry yeast. Simply whip up the dough, let it rise and cook it on the stovetop or even in the oven until puffy, golden brown.

Pita bread is a delicious staple found across the Mediterranean, whose pockets are great for making sandwiches, mini pizzas, or toasting and dipping in hummus. For a quick, easy bread recipe, nothing beats this pita bread.

Anyway, don't confuse pita with Indian naan bread. Although they are very similar in appearance because they are two flatbreads, naan bread is usually fluffier because it also includes yogurt among the ingredients.

What equipment do you need for making Pita Bread?

For the easiest homemade pitas, it helps to have a stand mixer. You can knead by hand but using a stand mixer dramatically cuts down how long it takes to work the dough.

A cast-iron skillet is best for cooking the pitas, but you can use any large pan.

How to make Pita Bread

Making a pita bread at home is easier than you may think. Start by combining warm water, sugar and yeast in a small bowl and let it sit for at least ten minutes.

Once frothy, add flour, olive oil and salt, then begin combining the ingredients and kneading on a floured counter until you get a smooth ball of dough. Cover and let the dough rise for at least 2 hours or until it has doubled in volume.
At this point, divide the dough into 8 equal sized balls, let them rest for half an hour and then flatten them about 1/4″ thick with a rolling pin. Let them rest for another ten minutes or so, then bake the pita bread in a hot pan with oil for 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Once baked and removed from the oven, the pita bread will remain puffy for a short time, but will retain its pocket so that you can stuff it with your favorite ingredients.

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Can you make Pita Bread in the oven?

You can also make the pita bread in a preheated oven at 475°F. Place it on a baking pan on the middle rack, then bake the pita pieces for 2 minutes per side or until they will puff up.

Can you make the Pita Bread ahead of time?

Yes! You can let the pita bread dough rise and store it in the fridge until you want to cook it. If you store it properly, the dough can last up to a week.

Why did my Pita Bread not puff up?

If your pita bread didn't puff up while cooking, check if your ingredients are fresh. Don't forget to dust your counter with flour while kneading and to preheat the cast-iron skillet or oven.

What to serve with Pita Bread

Use your freshly made pita bread to create delicious sandwiches – you can fill pita pockets with just about anything. Roasted veggies and cheese, healthy tuna salad, grilled chicken, kofta kebabs, beans, personal mini pizzas – whatever you prefer!

You can also enjoy pita with dipping sauces such as hummus, tzatziki, guacamole, or souvlaki.

Tips for making Homemade Pita Bread

If you don't have whole wheat flour, you can also use 3 cups of all-purpose flour.

For the water, aim for 105 to 110°F. Too cold, and the yeast won't activate, and if the water is too hot, it will kill off the yeast.

If you make the pita dough thicker, it will cook without a pocket. Moroccans eat this thicker bread dipped in hot syrup made with butter and honey.

For gluten-free pita bread, replace all-purpose flour with a gluten-free option.

If your dough isn't coming away from the bowl, add ¼ cup of extra flour. Add more if needed.

You can leave the dough to rise inside your cold oven with the oven light on.

Use a kitchen scale to help you portion out the dough in equal pieces.

How to store Homemade Pita Bread

While pita bread tastes best fresh out of the skillet, you can let it cool and store it at room temperature in an airtight container for 3-5 days.

Can you freeze Pita Bread?

Yes! You can freeze pita bread for up to 3 months. Make sure to close it in zip-top bags and layer wax paper between each pita piece. Before serving, reheat frozen pita in a medium-heated oven.

Instructions

Place the water, sugar, yeast and wheat flour in the bowl of your stand mixer. Whisk together and leave for 10 to 15 minutes, or until it becomes frothy.

Add olive oil, all-purpose flour and salt to the bowl.

Combine the ingredients on low until the dough comes away cleanly from the side of the bowl. Continue to knead for about 5 minutes. Lightly flour a work surface, then turn out the dough, and shape it into a ball.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl.

Cover the dough and set aside in a warm area to double in size, for about 2 hours.

Once doubled in size, turn the dough out onto a floured surface.

Shape into a ball, then cut into 8 equal portions.

Roll each piece of dough into a ball.

Then cover with a clean damp cloth for 30 minutes to rest.

Take a rolling pin and roll the dough balls into flat pitas about 1/4″ thick. Cover and let rest 10 to 20 minutes.

Heat oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the pitas for 2 to 3 minutes on each side.

Wait until they puff up and turn brown.

Serve and enjoy!

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