The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

baguette size and weight

james9's picture

baguette size and weight

Does anyone know what the traditional size and weight of a baguette should be? How many slashes etc..


many thanks.

Chode's picture

... is that the definition of a baguette is that it is 250g.  Some are short and fat, some are long and thin --but they all weigh (or are supposed to) 250g.

As for the number of slashes, that will depend on low long your baguette is. Mine are 16" long as that is the length of my baguette pan.  Generally 5-7 cuts are enough to go end to end. Each cut overlaps the previous one by 25-30%

dwcoleman's picture

A baguette (pronounced /bæˈɡɛt/) is a specific shape of bread, commonly made from basic lean dough, a simple guideline set down by French law, distinguishable by its length, very crisp crust, and slits cut into it to enable proper expansion of gases and thus formation of the crumb, the inner soft part of bread. The standard diameter of a baguette is approximately 5 or 6 cm, but the bread itself can be up to a meter in length, though usually about 60 cm. A Parisian baguette typically weighs 250 grams (8.8 oz), but this is not legally regulated and varies by region[1]. It is also known in English as a French stick or a French bread.

There is a definition from wikipedia, as for the validity I'm not sure.  I do recall hearing that the number of slashes must be ODD, the French considered loaves with an EVEN number of slashes to be inferior. 

However, I scale most of mine around 454g prebaked for a 16" long baguette.


dghdctr's picture

Hi James,

In France, the scaling weight (raw dough) is 350g, according to 2 different French sources I've consulted.  They should traditionally be a meter long, which, as you might realize, would make them very skinny.  These original baguettes were seriously high in their crust-to-crumb ratio. 

The ones you see most often in the US are fatter than that, shorter, and often heavier -- this may be because we like to use them for sandwiches.  Most "baguettes" I've seen for sale in the US were 14-16 ounces, and about 24 inches long.  All the US versions use the name "baguette", but in France they're a bit more specific about naming each size and/or shape. 

A shorter baguette at the same weight is a batard, a skinny one at about half the weight (I think) is a ficelle.  A half-length loaf with half the original weight is a demi-baguette.  Versions at 500g are termed Parisienne.  Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking Volume Two has a nice chapter on breadmaking (she learned from Calvel), and she goes into some detail to describe sizes and shapes of the varieties made from this one dough. 

--Dan DiMuzio

james9's picture

Thanks folks, I was just wondering, as I was making some around 250g but they seemed a little small to me, and there was no real definitive answer on the net that i could find.