HOW TO MAKE SOURDOUGH BREAD AND STARTER

How to Make Sourdough Bread and Starter

Sourdough bread is the oldest form of leavened bread. The first recorded civilization we know about to have sourdough bread was the Egyptians around 1500 B.C.

Early settlers brought sourdough starters from Europe and it is said that Christopher Columbus had a crock of sourdough aboard ship when he discovered America.

I have tried many sourdough starters but find this one to be the easiest to get started and makes the best bread.

Sourdough Starter
3 tablespoons instant mashed potato flakes
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 cup warm water
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast or one package
Combine all ingredients in a glass container,  stir with wooden spoon. Cover with clean dish cloth or cheese cloth and let sit for 5 days, stirring daily with wooden spoon. Do not refrigerate.
On the morning of the 5th day, feed the starter 3 tablespoons instant potatoes, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 1 cup warm water. Stir and cover and let stand until evening or at least 6 hours.
Remove one cup of starter and place the rest of the starter in the refrigerator. Make sure there are holes in the top of the container.   The starter needs to be able to breathe.
Every 5 days repeat feeding instructions and remove 1 cup and discard or make bread.
TSLCCOOKBOOKBANNER1
Sourdough Bread Recipe
1 cup sourdough starter
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup corn oil (can use vegetable or canola)
6 cups all-purpose flour
Mix sugar, oil, salt, water and starter in a large bowl. Add flour. Turn out onto floured surface and knead several times until forms a ball adding flour if needed. Place the dough into a large, oiled bowl, turn once so that dough will be greased, cover with clean dish towel and let rise overnight.
The next day, punch the dough down, turn out onto floured surface, knead for several minutes, divide in half, place in 2 greased bread pans. Cover and let double in size. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Turn out to cool.

This bread makes your kitchen smell great while cooking and makes two great loaves of fresh bread for your family.

Note: If you can find a quart sized or smaller glass jar with a plastic top and punch holes in the top, this makes the perfect container for something to keep your starter in the refrigerator. I found one at the Dollar Store. I am posting a picture of my jar. The starter has to have air thus the holes in the top. Anything like this will work.

TSLCSourdoughbreadjarHow to Make Sourdough Bread Starter

Check out my recipe for Sourdough Waffles, Sourdough Muffins, Sourdough Biscuits, and Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls. You can make all these recipes with the starter above.

Click here to check out other tips from our site: Tips From The Southern Lady Cooks.

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187 Comments

  1. Jackie Spencer says:

    What should the starter look a couple days after starting ?

  2. Patsy Smith says:

    I was given this starter in 1986. It still works great. I now have 6 jars of it since I make rolls every week for a restaurant. I have found that it’s best to let it set on counter 24 hours after feeding and then refrigerate until ready to use again. I cover my jars with a folded half of a paper towel secured with a rubber band. I’ve found it’s easy to make and it’s what everyone asks for. Makes wonderful croissants also!

  3. Shelly cotter says:

    I was given a recipe for the most delicious bread with the starter years ago when I was a military wife living in Alabama. I ended up moving away & lost the recipe. I have tried in vain to find it again. The one thing I remembered about it was feeding the starter with instant potato flakes. Finally I decided to try a Google search last month and found your site. I am delighted to report it’s the same recipe & my family is once again enjoying this one of a kind bread!

    • The Southern Lady says:

      So happy you found us, Shelly and the recipe for the starter. Hope you enjoy as much now as you did then and thank you for letting me know. Have a great weekend.

  4. Hello,
    Can I use flour instead of instant potatoes ?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I wouldnt know, I make it the way the recipe is written. Some of the comments below say they have used bread flour.

  5. Mabel Cash says:

    I used this recipe for years. Getting ready to start again. I was using the recipe when my husband was transferred to Shanghai. I left my starter with a friend. On one of my visits home in Virginia I decided to take it back to Shanghai with me. Yes I did. I taught my maid how to feed and make bread. Was a favorite of our friends. When we returned home I carried my starter in my carry on bag and it got warm, started to bubble and I could smell the mix. I must say, it’s a 24 hour trip but I got it home with only a small amount of mess in my bag. It was worth it. So overall that recipe lasted about 5-6 years. Love it.

  6. Barbara Miles says:

    I have tried a sourdough starter before. The bread is very good yet because no yeast is added to the starter (after the initial start) it stopped being good bread after several bakings. I thought a starter would last forever or do you have to restart every so often to have the yeast in it to make the bread rise?

    • Lois Jones says:

      I have been using the same starter for almost two years now and have no problem with my bread. In fact we had some visitors come for a while and when I asked them if they wanted toast, their comment was “”only if you have that famous sourdough bread””.

    • Norma Long says:

      I have been using this starter since Feb. I see no change in it except the dough rose faster when it was new. Great thing about it now is I make it before I go to bed, then bake the next day. The texture seems nicer since it sits for over 12 hours.

    • Paula Lee says:

      My starter is over 30 years old. Got it from a dear lady and have used it ever since!

  7. Allyn Willis says:

    Thank you! I’ve been looing for this starter recipe for ages. I used to make sour dough regularly when I first moved out on my own and this was the starter I used. Unfortunately I screwed up and accidentally killed it.

  8. Carol Ann Speight says:

    I have just read your comment in response to “carol/April 22, 2016 at 6:40 PM”. (My name is Carol as well/I am in Canada)… Way back in 1971.. I was introduced to sourdough and was given instruction to feed “after every use”. That feed was 1 cup milk, 1/2 cup white sugar & 1 cup white/all-purpose flour. Never was it told to me to toss out what was left of my sourdough. Is this toss out done for a reason? Also I was never-ever told to use a jar with holes in the lid…My sourdough was very “prolific”.lololol….NOTHING in my refrigerator would of been safe had I used a jar with holes in the lid….lolol. I am NOT trying to be difficult…just trying to understand the practice of “nurturing” sourdough. , Thank you, Another Carol in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada.

  9. I have enjoyed making so many recipes with your starter. Today I used all but 1/2 cup of my starter for two recipes. My starter is over a month old. How do I feed it and increase the amount of starter to your original amount? I really don’t want to start all over again…

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I would start over and maybe make twice the amount of starter to begin with if you use a lot at a time.

  10. Ladybirdpdx says:

    I need to make bread more often than 5 days can I feed it more than recommend?

  11. I notice that some of the recipes use a lot more sugar for the starter (like 3/4 Cup) this 3 TBSP everyone is having good luck with?

  12. I just made artisan no knead bread in a cast iron oven……….wondering if anyone has ever baked sourdough round loves by this method? You put the cast iron pan in the oven for a certain time to heat, then add the round loaf to the hot cast iron pan. Very happy to find this recipe, used to have starter when I lived in Germany but had to leave it behind when I left. Now, off to store to get potato flakes! thanks again for recipe and hopefully insight on the cast iron dutch oven for baking.

    • Hi Norma~~ I don’t have the potato flakes, I have what looks to be a powdered form. Would that work, or should I be safe and get the flakes? Thanks so much!

      • I made one loaf of bread following this recipe for starter and bread dough yesterday. I used the remaining dough for a pan of cinnamon rolls that I topped with cream cheese icing. Both were wonderful. The bread has a slightly sour, yeasty taste and has a soft texture. (made a great peanut butter and jam sandwich!). Cinnamon rolls were light and fluffy and wonderful. The only problem I had, and it was a biggie…………I mixed my dough around 9:30 pm, and left it to rise “overnight” according to recipe. I woke up at about 1:45 am and came out to check dough. It had already doubled and then some. So, there I was at 2 am, getting bread and cinnamon rolls ready for second rise. Had to stay up for that and for the baking & cooling time. Hubby woke up to wonderful baking bread smells along with a strong wiff of cinnamon………..and a cranky, sleepy wife. We do live in AZ and it is warm, but think this might be a issue for some, have seen comment that this happened to another person. Can’t wait until my five days are up to bake again, but will adjust my feeding time of the starter so I am baking in the daylight hours. Thank you for sharing this!

  13. Should my starter be really thick when i first start it?

  14. I know for the bread. I was asking about the coffee cake recipe.

  15. Ready to make my bread can I use a cookie sheet to make a loaf of bread instead of a loaf pan . thanks

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I have never tried using a cookie sheet to make bread, Kim. I would think it would spread out all over the sheet and not rise up like it does in a loaf pan.

  16. Made my first bread today from my starter!!! Super easy and super delicious! Thanks for the recipe!!!

  17. I use to make bread from a starter, but it called for bread flour. Will this starter work with either flour?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I have not tried it with bread blour. I see no reason why it would not work though.

      • I use nothing but bread flour and it works wonderful. I have never used such an easy recipe to make. a never fail.

      • Bread flour works wonderful with this starter. That is the only flour I use.

      • I have used both bread flour and all purpose flour, I could not see any difference in the outcome. I love this sourdough bread and have been making it on a regular basis. I have not purchased a loaf of “store bread since I got my starter going almost a year ago.

  18. Karen Englehart says:

    I made my first ever sourdough bread. It turned out beautiful and yes, the kitchen smelled wonderful while it was baking. I do think it could have baked at least 5 minutes longer, a bit moist in the center, but my oven is not perfect. I felt the bread was a bit sweeter than I prefer but hubby thought it was great. I plan to experiment using less sugar or substititing honey. Thank you for getting me started with sourdough!

    • The Southern Lady says:

      So happy you are enjoying the bread and hubby likes it, too. Thank you for letting me know. Happy to have you on the site. Have a great weekend, Karen. Happy Valentine’s Day to you both.

    • I invested in a digital baking thermometer and bake my bread to an internal temp of 200*. It sure has taken the guess work out of baking my bread. I got mine at Bed Bath and Beyond. I just insert the thermometer in the end of the bread making sure it doesn’t touch the pan on the bottom or sides.

      • Thanks Chalotte, I may have to invest in a baking thermometer. I also did and now always use honey instead of sugar in my bread, now experimenting with adding whole wheat.

  19. I have been looking for a sourdough starter for a long time that was easy and I finally found one and it is your recipe. I made my first batch of bread this morning and both loaves turned out very good. I will be making this often. Thank you for sharing.

  20. Jean DeSousa says:

    I am making your sour dough bread. I made this bread many years ago but life got too busy so I stopped. I chose your recipe because it looked similiar. I have made it twice and it tastes great but my question is: it seems too dense and heavy, not airy. Did I not knead it enough or let it rise longer? I welcome suggestions. You have been making it much longer so I hope you can help. Thanks…

    • The Southern Lady says:

      The wetter the dough the less dense it will be, Jean. Don’t over knead it, just enough that you can handle it to get it into the greased bowl. Make sure the temperature while it is rising stays the same, like if you leave it overnight don’t turn the heat down in the room so that the temperature changes while rising. Make sure the bowl is well greased and you can see the oil on the dough once you turn it. I hope this helps.

  21. I’m a bread maker newbie, I made your bread and it turned out great. The bread is crumbly when I sliced it, is this normal or did I possibly do something wrong. Can’t wait to make another batch. Thanks so much for an easy recipe and all the hints that were given in your comment section.

    • The Southern Lady says:

      Mine is not crumbly. You may have just cooked it a little long. Try cooking a few minutes less next time and use a serrated knife to slice with if you have one. This bread is wonderful toasted for breakfast, makes wonderful French toast, too. It freezes great. Just be sure to wrap it well if you freeze it. So happy it turned out good for you. Thank you for letting me know.

      • Thank you, I did use the serrated knife and it doesn’t crumble all to pieces. I’ll take your advice and cook it just a little less, regardless I liked the taste and enjoyed the experience of baking it, and plan on doing a lot more.

  22. Dorothy Brown says:

    This was my first time ever to make bread, it turned out great. I always thought it would be difficult, but with this starter it was so easy. I’m getting ready to make it for the second time. Thanks so much for sharing.

    • The Southern Lady says:

      So happy to hear that you are enjoying this recipe Dorothy and congratulations on making your first bread! Happy to have you on the site.

  23. Karen Dahne says:

    Can I use instant yeast ?

  24. Jackie Spencer says:

    The first day I made the starter, it was foamy and smelled yeasty. The second day I went to stir it and the top was all water and not much of a yeast smell. What did I do wrong

  25. Sourdough Coffee Cake
    1 cup starter
    1cup all purpose flour
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 cup vegetable oil
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/2 tsp baking soda
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp vanilla
    1 egg
    Mix all ingredients well and pour in a greased and floured bundt pan or 9 inch pan. I always use bundt pan..
    Mix 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup melted margarine and 1/2 cup nuts.. I use pecans. Pour over batter. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes.. Let cool a little and turn out on a plate.

  26. Linnia Stahl says:

    I am so happy to see this about sourdough starter and bread. I used to make sourdough loaf bread, rolls and coffee cakes back in the 80’s and actually sold them. I kept 3 starters going most of the time. A lady gave me the starter and of course after about 8 years I got tired of fooling with it and let it go. I just recently tried to start a starter and bread will not rise… I’m going to try this and hope for the best…I have a great coffee cake recipe if anyone would like it. Thank you so much for this post.. It made my day!!!!! The instant potatoes I used to use are no longer made… Do you just use any instant potato flakes?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      Yes, Linnia, I just buy them at Walmart or Kroger.

      • Thank you so much for your reply…. My son is a picky eater and he asked me a few weeks ago if I would make him a sourdough coffee cake so i tried starting a starter which I’ve never done because of being given the starter before. I made the coffee cake but it didn’t turn out as well as it should because my starter isn’t exactly right.crazy thing it rose and bread wouldn’t. I’m going to start all over tonight or in the morning. I will post the coffee cake recipe shortly for anyone that would like to have it.. I’ve done a lot of searching and can’t find the recipe for it anywhere..

      • Southern Lady, you make this sound so easy, I had very good luck with this recipe when I first started it several years ago, now for the life of me, the bread doesn’t have the twangy taste and doesn’t rise. I keep reading all the posts and sounds like some have the same problem. Please help me if you can, and I know you can.

      • The Southern Lady says:

        I don’t know what to tell you Joy. My bread raises fine and I have not had this problem. I usually make my starter every year though and don’t keep it through the summer just because I get tired of making the bread. Maybe your starter gets old or something if you keep it too long.

      • thanks, I did see where you use plain flour. I was told years ago to only use bread flour. I’m going to try plain.

    • I would like the Coffee Cake recipe Linnia, thanks

  27. can you use self rising flour?

  28. I’ve increased mine up to a half gallon and it still works fine. I just feed it on schedule a time or two and don’t make bread. When I get as much of the starter that I want, I start making the bread again. This past Christmas, I made 22 loaves in four days.

    • The Southern Lady says:

      Thanks for the input Charlotte! That is amazing that you made so many loaves. I am happy to know that. Have a great day.

    • Michael Capristo says:

      Thank you so much for bring up the fact that you now have a half gallon of starter. My question is how much do you increase the measurements of what you feed it as the amount of starter grows?

      I’ve tried to make starter several times and it seems to get weaker and weaker. I’ve finally figured out (I think) that the amount of food (potato flakes, sugar) must be increased in proportion to the amount of starter I have. Am I thinking correctly or not?

      • I always use the same amount to feed the starter. I increased the volume of starter by feeding it and not removing a cup of starter until I had the amount of starter I wanted. My house tends to stay on the cool side so, at times I would place the starter in the oven with the oven light on. This provided the right temp for it to aid in the reproduction of yeast. You may need to place something in the door to hold it open just a little. As for the strength of the starter, if I felt it was getting weak, I would add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of yeast when I fed it and let it set an extra day before using it. I just love how versitle it is. Don’t be afraid to experiment with it. Just don’t try to use it in a bread machine. Enjoy.

  29. I am on the 3rd day of the starter and it seems rather thick, do I need to add any water or just leave it like it is? It is bubbling and smells like sour dough. Thanks!

  30. Once it sets up for the first 5 days & I feed it again….the recipe says to take out 1C & put it in the frig…..instead of putting it in the frig can I just go ahead & make bread with it while its room temp?

    Also your recipe says to put 1C in the frig in a glass jar with a plastic lid…..I was wondering if I can use a glass jar with a metal lid (old spag sauce jar)…..not sure the purpose of the plastic lid??
    Thanks,
    Teresa

    • You can use a metal lid. It will get gunky after a while, but just wash it and keep using it. I’ve had starter in my fridge for 23 years, and it’s never died. I only use bread flour. I tried plain flour once, but the texture was too fine for my liking. :)

      • Carol Ann Speight says:

        Hi Charlotte….you have had the sourdough for 23 years and it is the one made with potato flakes?

      • Yes it was. I have since stopped making the bread and got rid of my starter. Whenever I want to make it again for special occassions or gifts for friends, I just start a new starter.

      • Carol Ann Speight says:

        Thank you for responding, appreciate it.

  31. Just got my first batch rising. Used my Kitchen-Aid mixer because I don’t have the strength to mix by hand. Did have to add almost another cup of flour though to get it thick enough. My starter looked rather flat, had hootch on top, but smelled ok. Seems to be working. Tomorrow will tell the tale I guess! Think I am going to make one loaf to eat and some rolls to freeze.

  32. Hi! Great recipe! Do you ever feed the starter yeast again, or use yeast in the bread? I am feeding for the first time today but I am not sure if I need to use yeast in the dough. Thanks!

    • No you don’t add more yeast. The starter (the part you keep week to week) has live yeast in it, that’s what’s why you feed it.

  33. Got my first batch rising, beautifully!

    • This is the absolutely best bread recipe I have ever used! Now what am I gonna do with all the yeast I bought for storage! Someone asked about bread flour, that’s what I used and it was wonderful., thanks for sharing!

  34. Judy Mathison says:

    Can you use a plastic jar with holes in the lid?

  35. Sherry Baird says:

    When you make the starter, you said to feed it on the 5th day does the day you make it count as a day or is it 5 days from the day you make it? I am looking forward to some awesome bread Thank you so much for sharing.

    • The Southern Lady says:

      If you start it on a Tuesday, your fifth day would be Saturday and you make the bread that day, too.

      • Sherry Baird says:

        Thank you so much, have you even used a Kitchen Aid Mixer to make the bread?

      • The Southern Lady says:

        No, I don’t use a mixer myself but you probably could.

      • Been feeding my starter for over 2 years….I feed “Herman” every Saturday…he does just fine

      • Cheryl Brown says:

        Cindy that is every 7 days if you do it every Saturday – not 5 as the recipe states – and it still works fine? I know since I work monday thru fri. that would work better for me!

      • Cheryl….yes I feed it every Sat…been doing this for over 2 years with this new batch of starter….i did have starter years ago until I got tired of feeding it….even back then I fed it every Sat…..the every 5 days was just too much for me to keep up with:-)

  36. I’m on day 4 now and my starter is separating. Smells very yeasty but isn’t foamy. If I put my ear to the top of the jar I can hear it “sizzling”. But since it’s not foamy, has it gone flat? Foamed the first day but no more. It’s been pretty cold in the kitchen and I can’t find a place where it’s warm. Hope it’s ok.

    • The Southern Lady says:

      It doesn’t matter if it separates. It will go back together when you stir it. If you can hear it, I would say it is probably o.k. I usually set mine on top of my stove with the light on or put in oven when the oven is not on.

  37. Courtney Thompson says:

    I just made this bread for the first time. Followed recipe exactly and got a really nice loaf of bread. It has a great texture but doesn’t have that “sourdough” flavor. It tastes kind of like really good white bread. Also after the starter is refridgerated and you feed again on the 5th day, do you leave it in the fridge that day or sit it out for that day?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      The sourdough flavor will probably get stronger as the starter gets older. I always feed it again and let it sit all day then take out a cup each time. This bread is wonderful for sandwiches and French toast. I love it that way. Hope you enjoy it.

  38. When I put the remaining starter in the refrigerator after I take out my one cup. do you still stir it every day or just feed it on the 5th day.

  39. It has been years since I did this, but was told that you can freeze the Friendship Bread Starter and Sourdough Starter. Thaw and start it back up again. It takes awhile to get the flavor developed in either of these breads. Also, you sometimes get a clear/yellow liquid on top. Just stir it back in. It’s “Hootch” which comes from the bread making ’49s and the Alaskan natives vocabulary.

  40. Can you use bread flour?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I have never used bread flour in a starter.

      • I’ve always used bread flour, as a matter of fact I didn’t even notice the recipe called for all purpose. My old recipe used bread flour and when I started this new starter I used the bread flour

    • Yes, I use it just like regular flour. I have bought Bread Flour in 25lb bag at Sam’s for years and keep it in the freezer except for a canister on kitchen counter. Have been using bread machine and just came across this recipe about 3 weeks ago and it reminded me of when I made it many years ago. I am going to have to start cutting recipe in half so we only get 1 loaf every 5 days instead of two. Have been giving away lots of bread!

  41. I just made a new batch, but I used to have this starter and I fed it everyday, mostly around the holidays because I give it to people. is it okay to do that? It seemed to work

  42. Hollie Coston says:

    Can I make bread any time I want to as long as I feed the starter after taking out the cup? Or can I only bake every 5 days?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I only bake every five days.

      • I have more than a quart of the starter and recently I baked 22 loaves over a seven day period. My recipe says the starter can be fed every three to five days. I fed the starter, let it set, and didn’t bake until I got over a quart of starter. I have mine in a 64 oz jar because I do 2-3 batches of bread at a time. I still feed it like the recipe instructs.

  43. I used to have an Alaskan Sourdough Starter from back in the Gold Rush Days! (It was actually that old!). We moved and someone dropped the jar! I almost cried! My question is….could I use a plastic jar like an old mayo jar with holes in the lid? Or does it HAVE to be glass?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I think it would work with plastic.

      • I have a similiar question. Your recipe says a glass jar with a plastic lid. I thought of using a canning jar with the lid that came with it (metal type lid) instead of a plastic lid just because thats what I have. Will that work?

  44. Hollie Coston says:

    I’m day 4 on my starter. Every time I go to stir it, it has separated. It smells sourdough-y.but doesn’t look puffy or thick…what is it supposed to look like during the process?

  45. Is this starter one you can share with other people? If so, what do you do?

    • After you have fed your starter and it has set for the allotted time, stir it. Next take out a cup for the person you want to share with and take out a cup for your bread. Just make sure you have at least a cup left to keep your starter going.

  46. Vickie fletcher says:

    If I begin the starter on Tuesday, do I feed it on Saturday or Sunday? Didn’t know whether to count Tuesday as one of the 5 days or not. Thanks.

  47. Ok bread baking newbie here and I have a couple questions… How important is it to wait exactly 5 days? Could I feed and bake once a week instead? Would it create issues to feed half the amount and only take out half a cup? I really want to start baking my own bread but it would just be for me and my boyfriend

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I always follow the recipe. You can freeze the bread or it makes great gifts, too.

      • It’s also great for church bazaars, too. I took six loaves and they basically made it in the door before they were gone. We even made a list for others to sign up for me to make more loaves.

    • My recipe says it can be fed every 3-5 days, but, I have gone as long as 14 days without feeding. When I go that long, I take the starter out the night before I plan on feeding it. After feeding it, if it doesn’t look like I think it should, I throw a tablespoon of yeast or a packet of yeast in and let it set a few more hours. I have actually left it out three days to make sure it’s going good. You could cut the recipe in half and use only 1/2 cup of starter for one loaf. If you are going to be gone and can’t feed it, I feed it half the called amount, stir it and leave in fridge. It’s really forgiving. Yes, it freezes great. This makes wonderful gifts and the receiver will love you for sharing.

    • I bake every day with mine just as long as you feed it very time you bake it works out great

  48. Dawn Threewit says:

    Could I bake the sourdough bread in the Bread Machine???

  49. FLOY GLASSCOCK says:

    IS THERE A WAY TO MAKE SOUR DOUGH COOKIES WITH THIS STARTER?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      I have not made cookies with it. If you find a cookie recipe online using sourdough, you could probably use this starter with the recipe.

  50. Hi. I’m confused about the “5 days” for the starter part. Is it 5 days for each 2 loaves?

  51. My mom makes this! It is very good!!! She makes it into rolls sometimes instead of loaves.

  52. Do you think I could substitute freshly mashed potatoes for the flakes? Any ideas on the proportions?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      No, I don’t think you could, Cathy. I never heard of doing that.

    • I have substituted mashed potatoes, about a 1/2 cup, for the flakes and used the potato water for the water. The only thing is it was recommended to keep that starter for two weeks and make a new starter. I use mine so much that I didn’t replace it. My mother used to use potato water for the water for hot rolls. I don’t think I would use mashed potatoes each feeding.

  53. mary addison allen says:

    Do you feed the starter before or after
    taking out a cup to make bread?

    • The Southern Lady says:

      You take it out of the fridge the morning you plan on making bread and feed it. Let it set all day and take out a cup to make the bread that evening. Then, put the starter back in the fridge.

  54. Question: does the jar that you first use when the starter is left on the counter have to have holes in it or does that jar lid need to be completely closed?

  55. I have been searching for a starter that didn’t need a phd in chemistry to get going and i have now found it!! Thank you, I will definitely be giving this a go!

  56. I think a canning quart jar with a coffee filter on top would work…….?

  57. Hi when using Whole Wheat flour you need to increase the leavening or use half white, half wheat….I have made ww bread in the bread machine and it was very heavy. the nex
    t time I added more yeast and it was much lighter…………..

  58. Carol Campbell says:

    Hi, I want to try this! One question: When you say “Remove 1 cup and put bowl in refrigerator…” is that the one cup or the starter? Do you ever refrigerate it or does the starter stay on counter all the time?

  59. Texastumbleweed says:

    gonna do this one…I have always kept a starter from King Arthur Flour until I was ill and no one fed my baby :( Thanks for sharing. I have a SD Keeper crock with a loose fitting lid (King Arthur) hope it works for me.

  60. Can you use this in a kenmore bread machine?

  61. so what part do you freeze?

  62. Hollie Coston says:

    Can you take out more starter than one cup at a time? Like if you wanted to make 4 loaves at once?

  63. Lorrie Baldiwn says:

    Making a new batch of your starter for the winter. It will be used for Thanksgiving rolls, numerous pizza crusts, numerous pans of cinnamon rolls and Christmas pan rolls. The longest I have kept this starter going is 5 months!! Thank you again, for your wonderful postings and blogs!!

    • I had my starter for about ten years before I got rid of it. I started another one this past January. Last week, I made 22 loaves of bread from the starter. You can feed the starter and not use it until you get enough to make multiple loaves. My recipe calls for feeding of 3 TBS potato flakes, 3/4 cup sugar, and 1 cup warm water.

      • I do not use refined processed sugars due to having cancer, and cranked cells live refined sugars and was wondering if I can use honey and how much

      • Charlotte says:

        Nina, I’m not sure how honey would work. You would have to experiment with it and see. That would mean starting the starter with honey and feeding it with it. Honey would change the taste of the starter, but it might be really good. Surely if you googled “substituting honey for sugar in recipes,” you would find the conversion rate of honey to sugar. If you find out let me know. Good luck.

  64. Carol Ann Speight/CanadianShe_Wolf says:

    Think I found a recipe that is close to the Sourdough Chocolate Cake recipe I used nearly 45 years ago! Hope it is okay to post the link to it on here?
    http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/sourdough-chocolate-cake-recipe

  65. I love starter I have my grandmas starter , I am 46 and remember making biscuits with her when I was around five and she had it for years before that, my starter has been around for a long time to say the least.

  66. Jean Beicher says:

    I LOVE sourdough pancakes- Im getting ready to make a new starter and I think I will try this recipe! Thanks!

    I have to mention that most potato flakes contain sodium bisulfite- a preservative that is so dangerous the FDA has banned its use on fresh fruits and vegetables…. I am highly sensitive to it and will have an anaphylactic reaction if I get any. I only bring it up because you never know who you will be serving and there are preservative free potato flakes available 😉

  67. Marlene C Whelan says:

    Judy – I’ve been using this recipe for almost a year now. I’ve got 3 diff starters going. I make bread, biscuits, and cakes. My favorite cake is a Sourdough Carrot Cake. WONDERFUL.

  68. I love this recipe!!! It is so easy to make and bake!! Thank you for sharing! I enjoy reading through your blog on here and then facebook! I do have one question.. I tried WHOLE WHEAT flour instead of regular flour and turned out good but it was not as fluffy? I wonder, if I can add something else to make it “fluff” more? Thank you once again, Friend of my Kitchen!! =)

    • Maybe, someone else can advise you on this. I have never made it using wheat flour.

    • Patricia, a Southern Gal says:

      My suggestion (not from experience but from reading other recipes) would be to proportionately use some of each whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour. Better yet, maybe, research on the internet how whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour could be interchangeable or proportioned in a recipe.

    • You can use gluten flour to increase the fluffiness of whole wheat bread. I used to make all of our bread when my children were little, and that’s what I did…

    • I substitute one cup of Hodgens Mill whole wheat flour for one cup of the bread flour for whole wheat bread and it is still fluffy. I wouldn’t suggest using over 2 cups of whole wheat in place of the bread flour.

  69. Hello,
    My first batch of starter is about done and I’m excited to attempt my first loaf or biscuits!
    I’ve seen a few people say their starter goes bad or I effective… Is there anyway to tell if that happens??

  70. I have made the sour dough bread for years but would love to have your recipe for rolls, cinnamon rolls and other things that you make with the starter.

  71. Susan Helton says:

    Would this recipe work in a bread machine?

  72. Question, can you pour the starter into the cup or must it be scooped out? Also can you please share a recipe for fried chicken? Thanks

    • Kristin, I don’t think it matters how you get it out of the jar. When I fry chicken, I just add some salt, pepper, and garlic salt to flour. Roll my chicken pieces in the flour and fry in enough oil to cover the chicken half way up. Fry till browned on one side and turn. Don’t overcrowd your skillet, leave some room between pieces. Some people dip in egg or buttermilk before dipping in the flour.

  73. is this sour dough bread good for diabites

    • Hi Carolyn, If you check the internet, I found sites saying they could eat sourdough bread. I have a friend that eats mine all the time and he is diabetic. He says it doesn’t make his sugar spike. I cannot tell you whether or not to eat this bread. You will have to make that decision. I would check out some medical internet sites.

  74. I have been looking for sourdough recipe for over a couple of years and haven’t found one so this is awesome. Thank ou so much!!!!!

  75. Thisi is the best receipe for sourdough bread!!! I finally found it again …

  76. So I just made my first loaf of bread ever. I can’t believe making great bread was so easy. Now i’m off to waffles cuse that’s what I was looking for in the first place. I’m so pleased with the recepies THANKS A BUNDLE!!!

  77. I can’t wait to try this recipe this weekend!!! Thanks so much!

  78. Do you have a recipe for a starter for Amish Friendship Bread? I love that bread and make it for everyone, but my starter went bad, and no one has one around here to build off of. Thanks!

    • Hi Paige, This is the only starter recipe I have for Friendship Bread:
      1 pkg. active dry yeast
      1/4 cup warm water
      1 cup all-purpose flour
      1 cup white sugar
      1 cup warm water
      Dissolve yeast in warm water. In a glass container, combine the flour and sugar. Mix well. Slowly stir in warm milk and yeast. Loosely cover with saran wrap. Mixture will get bubbly. Consider this day one or day you receive the starter.
      I hope this helps. Judy

      • Carol Ann Speight says:

        Hi! Was wondering IF you happen to have a recipe for sourdough chocolate cake. One of the results of a move back in 1987 was the loss of my recipe card box with a mass of my cherished “scratch” recipes in it! Your above recipe for Friendship starter is real close to the one I used for the cake. When I used 1 cup of the sourdough, I would the feed it 1 cup of milk, 1 cup (OR 1/2cup /can’t remember for sure) of sugar and 1 cup of flour. I surely am long overdue for a feast/fix of sourdough chocolate cake with extra thick double butter-buttercream frosting slathered all over it!! Hope you can “whip-up” something to put me out of this withdrawl I’m in.

      • The Southern Lady says:

        Sorry, I don’t have that one, Carol.

    • Cindy Phipps jipson says:

      Paige would you share the recipe for the amish friend ship bread, you xan in box it to me… thanks

  79. Judy, I just wanted you to know that I came up with a variation–Sweet Potato Sourdough Bread–which is delicious. I posted it at http://recipesforben.blogspot.com/2009/01/sweet-potato-sourdough-bread.html, giving you credit for the original recipe, of course!

  80. I’ve had my starter going for almost a month now, made from Judy’s recipe, and it is working very well. I’ve made several batches of bread, pancakes, and waffles and am about to launch a series of recipe experiments with it. Judy, would it be okay for me to quote your recipe, with links back to your recipe blog, on a new blog that I am setting up? I need it for the foundation of all my future sourdough recipes. Thank you for considering my request.

  81. My sourdough loaves turned out great! You can see a photo on my blog. I found that the dough for the bread didn’t need all night to rise. I got up to check on it halfway through the night and it was ready to go into the loaf pans. My husband remarked in the morning that he thought he smelled something wonderful around 3AM!I have a question–do you find that the starter gets more of the characteristic sourdough “sourness” over time, or does the flavor really depend more on where you live and whatever is floating around in your local air?

    • Can you use rice flour and make this gluten free?

    • yes.. I think it gets better w/age. No need to baby it either.. I have broken all the ‘rules’ so far & each time it comes out wonderfully.
      always cover it with a lid while it’s in the frig.. it’s resting SO it doesn’t need to be open & ‘breath” .. :-)
      even spilled half of it on the stove .. added back in water sugar & p-flakes, let it sit out over night & it’s wonderful .. rising in the bowl as we speak..
      I never make it every 5 days , sometimes 7 or even 10.. brought it out, let it sit.. changed my mind & put it back in the frig.. It’s only food… not life or death :-)

      once it has some age on it, it’s a wonder tonic. Love the smell too. Yum

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