I cannot, for the life of me (no matter what recipe I try), ever get the bread to rise that last bit in the oven. It always falls a bit instead.

It proofs nicely, but it just won't rise more in the oven. This time, I tried cutting little slits in the top (in case there was some sort of dried crust on top... even though I covered it with a clear shower cap), and I also preheated the oven for 45 minutes with a cast iron pan of water in the bottom of the oven, and a pizza stone. I placed the bread pan directly on the pizza stone.

The theory for oven spring is that the bubbles in the dough heat rapidly and expand. So there needs to be room for expansion (humid oven, no solid "crust" preventing it from expanding), and rapid heat transfer (pre-heated pizza stone).

It. Just. Won't. Work.

Any ideas?

P.S. - This is for gluten-free bread-making, but it should work just the same. All the recipes I try all assume that you'll get that oven spring. But I never do. Ugh. In case anyone is wondering, the latest recipe I have tried is this one: http://www.lynnskitchenadventures.com/2014/04/light-fluffy-gluten-free-bread-recipe.html

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    Gluten free doesn't work "just the same". I can't tell you exactly what your problem is, but gluten is very much involved in regular bread rising. – rumtscho Mar 3 '15 at 22:14
  • Have you verified the temp of your oven? – Mr. Mascaro Mar 3 '15 at 22:26
  • @jbarker2160: Yes. I have an oven thermometer. – threehappypenguins Mar 3 '15 at 22:53
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    @rumstcho: No, you're not going to get as much as a spring as the gluten counterpart, but countless people are able to still get a spring with gluten free bread. I'm not only not getting a spring, it's falling a little. – threehappypenguins Mar 3 '15 at 22:53
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    In traditional bread making, a healthy rise followed by a failed or fallen loaf usually indicates over proofing. Try reducing your rise times. That said, I feel like I'm being harsh without intent, but the bread in the pictures looks more dense than fluffy to me. I'll jump on the wagon with @rumtscho. Look at the typical oven spring bread questions and you will find that gluten development is one of key tenets of any good answer. – Derpy Mar 4 '15 at 3:05

I would check your oven temperature to be sure it's actually right, and also I'm wondering if you're over-proofing your dough, which could possibly result in it deflating when it goes into the oven, or at the very least result in a lackluster rise.

  • I have an oven thermometer. Also, I follow the recipe directions to a T. In fact, I let it proof for the shorter recommended duration (1 hr 15 minutes). – threehappypenguins Mar 3 '15 at 22:54
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    A lot depends on the temperature in the room as you are proofing, too - if it's too hot or too cold, your proof times can change, so maybe 1 hour 15 minutes is too long (or too short!). Have you tried the "poke test" at the recommended proof time to see if the dough is really ready? Poke the bread with a finger about 1/2" in, then watch how the dough reacts. If is springs back and the hole fills in quickly, it's under-proofed and needs more time. If it slowly fills back about halfway, then it's ready. If the hole stays, then you've over-proofed. – franko Mar 4 '15 at 4:09

I've since figured it out. Gluten free bread is very particular, and the moisture has to be just right. If there's not enough water, the dough is too dense and won't rise. If there's too much water, it will rise, but in the oven, the bubbles bubble through the too, causing the loaf to collapse (I sat and stared and watched it happen). I've since learned what the dough must look like. It looks like thick cake batter. Should be smooth looking, but not soupy.

  • Thanks for sharing your insights! Happy to hear that you found a good solution! – Stephie Apr 28 at 18:56

I've worked very little with gluten free dough recipes but I have made a number of styles and recipes, and here's what experience and a little thought is telling me.

Maybe you have too much steam. Some bread recipes actually prefer a very dry, hot oven. If your bread has more protein than starch/gluten the moisture may be weakening the structure of the bread while cooking before it has a chance to "lock in" the shape, causing the collapse.

My suggestion is go to a hot oven, and depending on your loaf size up your temp by 20-30 degrees. This may give you the lift you're looking for.


Any chance there's a lot of noise in your kitchen? Maybe urban legend or not but I know every time my mom's made yorkshire pudding we have to be queit otherwise they won't rise properly.

I also strongly agree with the gluten differential - gluten brownies compared to gluten free brownies have a completely different texture and 'springiness'

  • Again, gluten free may not have as much oven spring as the gluten counterpart, but it will still have oven spring. Mine is not only not getting spring, but it's actually falling a little. Also, I bake mainly when my kids are napping. So I doubt that is it. – threehappypenguins Mar 4 '15 at 0:13

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