How to Turn All-Purpose Flour into Bread Flour

all purpose flour and vital wheat gluten in measuring cups

I love working with all-purpose flour. It’s so cheap and easy to buy huge bags from my local Walmart or Smith’s or Costco and dump them into my fifty-pound plastic storage container.

Whenever I feel like baking, I just roll out my flour container and scoop out whatever I need.

But some bread recipes call for strong flour or bread flour. Bread flour tends to be more expensive than all-purpose flour, especially if I choose well-known brands over store brands.

Since I’m more of a hobbyist, amateur baker, I’d rather not spend more money than necessary. On several occasions, I’ve asked myself “do I really need bread flour for baking bread? Why bother?”

So I decided to do a little research on bread flour versus all-purpose and the difference it makes.

slices of bread on a plate

Secrets to a Softer Crust

I love crunchy crusts on artisan bread, but when I want a sandwich, I want soft crust. Here's how to adjust your baking to make softer crusts.