Can Fast Acting Yeast Be Used in Place of Active Dry Yeast?

Image by, courtesy of Sharon Mollerus

When baking bread at home, most people use packaged yeast to make the dough rise. Active dry yeast and fast-acting yeast are the two most common forms of yeast for home use. Either can be used in a bread recipe if a few modifications are made.


There are many names for fast-acting yeast, but they are all the same type of yeast and work in the same way. Fast-acting yeast is sold as instant yeast, bread machine yeast and Fleischmann's RapidRise yeast.


One packet of active dry yeast contains 1/4 oz. of yeast, which is about 2 tsp. When using fast-acting yeast, you should use 25 percent less, which will be 1 1/2 tsp. in most recipes.


Although active dry yeast should be mixed with water before incorporating it into the dough, using this method with fast-acting yeast will negate its benefits. Instead, mix fast-acting yeast with the dry ingredients and add the liquid ingredients that have been heated to about 120 degrees F.

Rise Time

When using fast-acting yeast, the dough should double in size within about 10 minutes after you stop kneading it. At this point, punch it down, shape it into a loaf and let it rise again until doubled in size, about an hour.

Longer Rises

Fast-acting yeast can be used for longer rise times, if you prefer. Just use it exactly as you would use active dry yeast, but add a little sugar to the water before mixing in the fast-acting yeast.