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Perfectly Puffed Pita: 5 Tips

Updated on March 31, 2010

Pita bread is a flatbread of Middle Eastern origin. This bread is simple to prepare and full of healthy grains. At times, however, achieving the signature hollow core or “puff” can prove tricky.

Puff Secret: Steam and Heat

The key to a perfectly puffed pita loaf is the combination of steam and heat. The steam will become trapped inside the pita and, toward the end of baking, begin to inflate as a result of the heat. If the dough is too dry or the oven is not hot enough, the pita will not puff.

Use Wet Dough

Be sure that the pita dough is wet enough to generate the steam that will inflate the loaf when placed in a hot oven.

Roll a Thin Pita

When rolling out the wet dough, be sure that the resulting pita is very thin. This will make the bread more conducive to puffing.

Do Not Slash

Experienced bread bakers know that a standard loaf of western bread, such as an artisan baguette, is slashed across the top with a serrated knife just before entering the oven. Pita should not be slashed because then there would nothing to trap steam in within the loaf.

Use a Very Hot Oven

Be sure that the oven is hot enough. A standard temperature for baking pita bread is 500 degrees Fahrenheit. An oven lacking the proper heat will not allow the steam grow and hollow the pita.

Watch a Pita Puff to Perfection

All writing copyright of Beth Morey, 2010. Reproduction/reprinting is prohibited, although linking to this hub as an information source is permitted.

Talk back! What's your favorite flatbread?

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      Abdul 5 years ago

      Gluten is necessary for the puffing. No gluten means no puffing.

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      Pam Jacob 5 years ago

      Can anyone help me.. I have attempted making gluten free pita bread twice now and the bread tastes great but I can not get them to puff. Please can anyone help?

    • betherann profile image

      Beth Morey 7 years ago from Montana

      Let me know how it goes, Sablirab! Baking is such an art.

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      TheSablirab 7 years ago

      I think I may be too impatient for baking, but I may just have to give this a try!

    • betherann profile image

      Beth Morey 7 years ago from Montana

      Good luck, askjanbrass! I'd love to hear how your next pita-making adventure goes.

    • askjanbrass profile image

      askjanbrass 7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Add me to the list of those that don't bake enough (though I will admit, I do get into these stretches where I bake all the time). Regardless, great tips! I've only tried making pita bread once before, and to no avail. I'm going to try these suggestions next time (hotter oven and slightly wetter dough) and see what happens. Cheers!

    • betherann profile image

      Beth Morey 7 years ago from Montana

      We do too, Patti Ann! I am also guilty of not baking enough...

    • Patti Ann profile image

      Patti Ann 7 years ago from Florida

      Wow - I never thought of making pita bread - We eat a lot of it in our house.

    • betherann profile image

      Beth Morey 7 years ago from Montana

      Thanks, Heather! I adore all flatbreads. Yum!

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      Heather (Where's the Beach) 7 years ago

      YUM. I love pita bread!