Dutch oven bread stuck!

Ack! I just took some bread out of the oven that I baked with the Dutch oven/bread crock method, and it is TOTALLY stuck in there! I've never had the sticking problem before and don't know what I did differently. A) any suggestions for how to get it out? B) How do I keep that from ever happening again?



Marnie R. November 8, 2015
covering it again so some steam could work it’s magic totally worked! Thanks so much!
Leyanne T. January 5, 2014
I baked using my dutch oven for the first time this morning and the bread got stuck. I remained calm, resisted the urge to hack away at it, upturned the dutch oven on a cooling rack so the steam rose to the bottom. then after about 10 minutes I ran a pallet knife around the edges using a gentle side to side prising motion all around, then shook the bread loose onto the cooling rack. It came out intact eventually though next time I'll try greasing before baking!
GIOVANNI50 March 28, 2013
Add some semolina or rice flour to the bottom of the Dutch oven. It will not stick
petitbleu March 28, 2013
You might think about investing in a combo cooker. I know that if you already have a Dutch oven, you're probably loathe to get another Dutch-oven-y type thing, but I love my cast iron combo cooker. With this vessel, you don't have to worry about burning yourself nearly as much, since the "lid" of the cooker serves as the base for bread baking (the lid doubles as a frying pan and the base is a deep pot). So, there's no reaching into the pot to gingerly drop the dough in.
I don't know for sure if this would help, but you may also consider the temp of your oven. I bake my Dutch oven bread starting at 500F for 20 min (with the combo cooker preheated, of course), and then reduce the temp to 450. This really forms a thick, hard crust, which easily separates from the cooker when you take it out of the oven. It's almost like the intense heat of the pan cauterizes the dough on the bottom, preventing it from sticking.
fiveandspice March 28, 2013
Wow. That sounds awesome. I'm definitely going to look into that. Both the combo cooker and trying the temperature variation.
fiveandspice March 28, 2013
Ok, so lessons learned the hard way: A) certain wooden spoons are not strong enough to pry stuck bread out, and may instead snap and go flying. Oops. B) Antonia James is right as always, and if I had just been more patient and waited for the oven to cool for about ten minutes, the bread probably would have come right out, and not been as mangled as the part I pried out with the broken spoon. Now I know. I love the idea of baking on the lid, Droplet, but I do have a Dutch oven with a knob, so it wouldn't work...but now I know what to ask for when my birthday rolls around!
AntoniaJames March 28, 2013
How about baking on a (screaming hot!!) pizza stone, or terra cotta planter saucer, upside down, with the inverted casserole sitting over it? I'm thinking about trying that sometime, as my Dutch oven -- a perfect-in-every-other-respect Wagner Ware one from the 70's -- is much larger than is recommended. (I think it's about 10 quarts, which is fabulous for big braises, hams, etc. but not the best choice for artisan breads.) ;o)
fiveandspice March 28, 2013
I can't believe I've never thought of the pizza stone + inverted casserole idea! That's brilliant! I've tried doing just the pizza stone and spraying water into the oven, but that never ever seems to work as well as the Dutch oven. But with a cover, that may be perfect. I'm trying that for next week's bread!
Droplet March 28, 2013
This may not work for dutch ovens with a knob handle on the light (well not may not, it won't) but I've used a lidded glass casserole in the absence of a dutch oven and do it the reverse way- I put the bread on the lid and put the body of the dutch oven over it to be the lid. Makes putting the bread in and taking it out easier. If it was me I'd just let it cool completely in its stuck state and then cut it and take it out in sections, otherwise squishing the hot crumb will ruin it for you.
Droplet March 28, 2013
on the lid, not "light"...good morning, sorry

Voted the Best Reply!

AntoniaJames March 28, 2013
Letting it cool for a few minutes with the lid on might work, too, as moisture would build up on the bottom, which might loosen it. I know that works like a charm for stuck roast potatoes. If you're worried about it softening all of the crust too much, just let it sit in the hot oven on a stone or even just on the rack in the still-warm oven for a few minutes quickly to dry it out. ;o)
cookbookchick March 28, 2013
I frequently bake bread in Dutch oven type pots made of various materials (cast iron, enameled cast iron, ceramic). My breads always touch the sides as well as the bottom with no greasing or lining and they have never stuck. I wonder if ithe sticking was caused by some ingredient in the recipe you used this time?
aargersi March 28, 2013
Does it fill the oven? I bake in mine with parchment at the bottom, but it's a loaf sitting in the oven not touching the sides or anything ...
fiveandspice March 28, 2013
I think that maybe is the problem. It poofed over up against one of the walls, and got totally stuck against the wall. Should have been more careful with the transfer into the oven, I guess! I always get all worked up like, "ack! Super hot Dutch oven! Must get dough in without burning self! Eek! Eek!" And I dump it in and run away because I'm scared. :) So, um, any tips in that department may be helpful and also solve the problem.
Hilarybee March 28, 2013
I usually butter or oil my dutch oven if I'm baking bread in it--so I've never encountered the sticking problem. Have you run a thin knife around the edge to try to pry it out? I'd try to loosen the edges, and then put a plate flush with the bread and flip it up side down.
Good luck! Stuck baked goods are always a bummer.
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