Lavash is a traditional Armenian flatbread that is delicious, versatile, and easy to make at home. This scrumptious bread is soft and pliable enough for wraps yet sturdy enough to dip into stews. Plus, it is made with only 5 simple ingredients!
Lavash is a simple dish with major staying power. This time-honored traditional flatbread is temptingly thin and crispy while remaining soft, flexible, and foldable. It is easy to understand why this Middle Eastern gem has been around for thousands of years!
This Armenian flatbread recipe is simple and straightforward to make. In fact, the only necessary ingredients are flour, yeast, oil, salt, and water. However, it does require some time and patience. Have faith and resist the temptation to skip or rush through any steps! I also highly recommend a stand mixer. It isn’t absolutely necessary but will make your life much easier.
Table of Contents
- Flour – Any standard, all-purpose flour will do the trick. For the best flavor, I prefer unbleached and not bromated.
- Instant Yeast – Helps the dough rise and gives the bread those lovely, airy bubbles.
- Vegetable Oil – Adds moisture, richness, and pliability to the dough.
- Kosher Salt – Enhances and harmonizes the natural flavors of the dough.
- Sesame Seeds – (Optional) Add a light nutty flavor and a delicate crunch.
- Make the Old Dough. Combine the flour, water, and yeast in a large bowl and mix with a rubber spatula until a thick paste forms. Transfer the paste to a small, oiled container and set aside to rise for about 1 ½ to 2 hours, or in the fridge overnight. You want the old dough to double in volume. If you chill the dough overnight, let it come to room temperature for at least 2 hours before proceeding.
- Start the Fresh Dough. Transfer the old dough to a stand mixer along with the water, oil, and kosher salt. Use your hands to squish and break up the old dough in the water.
- Add Flour. Fit your mixer with the paddle attachment. Add one cup of flour and mix on low until the dough resembles pancake batter. Add the remaining flour and continue to mix on low until fully incorporated. Use a kitchen towel to cover the bowl. Set it aside for about 20 minutes, allowing time for the flour to hydrate.
- Smooth the Dough. Replace the paddle with the dough hook attachment. Remove the towel, return the bowl to the mixer, and mix on medium for about 4 minutes. You want the dough to appear smooth and to no longer be sticking to the sides of the bowl.
- Rest. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl with an 8-cup capacity, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside for 3 hours or overnight in the fridge.
- Rise. Just like with the old dough, make sure that it has doubled in size and is at room temperature before continuing.
- Divide the Dough. Move the dough to a flat, clean, lightly floured area and divide it into 8 roughly equal pieces. They should weigh about 3.5 ounces each.
- Shape into Balls. Use a circular motion on the counter to form the dough into balls. Transfer to a lightly oiled baking sheet, making sure they aren’t touching, then cover them with a lightly oiled piece of plastic wrap and set aside to rest for at least an hour.
- Roll Flat. Lightly dust a clean surface and rolling pin with flour. Work with one piece of dough at a time, keeping the rest covered and moist. Roll each one out into a rectangular shape. If desired, use the rolling pin to incorporate some sesame seeds into the dough.
- Heat the Pan. Heat a large cast iron skillet or griddle over medium-high heat until a drop of water instantly evaporates.
- Cook the Lavash. Add the flatbread to the hot skillet and let it blister and brown for about one minute. Carefully flip it over with tongs and brown the other side for no more than 30 seconds. If you want browner bread, flip it over and cook for another 30 seconds on the first side. Place each cooked flatbread under a kitchen towel while you repeat with the rest of the dough. Serve warm.
Eat the lavash soon after making it or store it in plastic bags to keep the bread pliable once cooled. It’s okay if it dries out and turns brittle; rehydrate it by misting the lavash with water and covering it with a towel to let it soften. Soon after, it should be pliable enough to roll up without cracking. If it’s still cracking, mist with more water.
For the best results, you want to roll the dough out quite thin. This will make the lavash flatbread more pliable and give it more of those big airy bubbles. Aim for about ⅛ inch or even a little thinner.
Yes! Once the dough has been divided and shaped into balls, you can choose to cover it with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Then, when it is time to make the lavash flatbread, all you will need to do is roll it out and cook it.
Here are just a few of the countless ways to enjoy this soft and thin flatbread:
– Wrapped around roasted meats like Grilled Koobideh, Lamb Shawarma, or Chicken Kofta.
– Dipped into Mutabal, White Bean Hummus, Whipped Feta, or any of your favorite dips.
– Stuffed with Baba Ganoush, Tabouli Salad, and Falafel for a quick vegetarian lunch.
– Served alongside hearty stews like Lamb Tagine or this Moroccan Chicken Stew.
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Lavash (Armenian Flatbread)
- Using a rubber spatula, mix together the flour, water, and yeast in a bowl until it forms a thick paste. Scrape the paste into a small, lightly oiled container, cover, and let it sit out for 1½ to 2 hours (See Note 1). Old dough should have doubled in volume.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the old dough, water, oil, and salt. Squish the old dough with your hands to break it up in the water.
- Add 1 cup of the flour and using the paddle attachment, mix on low speed until the dough looks like pancake batter. Next add the remaining flour and mix on low speed until fully incorporated. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let the dough sit for 20 minutes (See Note 2).
- Remove towel, attach the dough hook to the stand mixer and mix the dough on medium speed until the dough releases from the sides of the bowl without sticking and feels smooth to the touch, about 4 minutes.
- Lightly grease an 8 cup bowl and place the dough inside. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let it rest for 3 hours or until doubled in volume (See Note 3).
- Dust a clean surface lightly with flour and place the dough on top. Cut the dough into 8 pieces about 3.5 ounces each.
Shape the dough
- Cup the palm of your hand over one portion at a time and move your hand in a circle. The friction from the counter will help form the dough into a ball.
- Lightly oil a rimmed tray and place the dough on the tray, don’t let dough balls touch. Cover with plastic wrap lightly coated with cooking spray or oil. Let rest for 1 hour (See Note 4).
- Dust a clean surface lightly with flour. Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll each ball of dough into a thin rectangle about 8×12 inches. Work in batches and keep dough covered in between. OPTIONAL: once dough is rolled out, sprinkle sesame seeds on one side, and with rolling pin, press seeds into dough. These doesn’t have to look perfect.
Cook the Lavash
- Place a large cast-iron pan (or griddle over two burners) over medium-high heat for a few minutes or until a sprinkle of water instantly evaporates.
- Place the dough in the pan or over the griddle. Cook for 1 minute or until puffed slightly and blistered. Turn over using tongs to cook the other side, no more than 30 seconds. For extra browning, flip it over for 30 more seconds.
- Transfer the lavash to a baking sheet and cover with a dry kitchen towel while you cook the rest of the dough.
- Eat the lavash soon after making it or store it in plastic bags to keep the bread pliable. It’s okay if it dries out and turns brittle; rehydrate it by misting the lavash with water and covering it with a towel to let it soften. Soon after, it should be pliable enough to roll up without cracking. If it’s still cracking, mist with more water.
- Or refrigerate overnight and bring to room temperature for at least 2 hours before using.
- This allows the flour to hydrate.
- Or refrigerate overnight and let the dough come to room temperature for at least 2 hours before portioning.
- At this point you can refrigerate for up to 3 days, covered.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.