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Sourdough Sandwich Bread

Mastering a perfect sourdough sandwich bread recipe can be frustrating. You may follow all the steps and still end up with a flat or gummy loaf. I have tested my soft sourdough sandwich bread recipe more times than I can count to make it as easy to follow as possible. This recipe is easy and straight-forward to follow and results in a light and fluffy sourdough bread that is perfect for sandwiches, french toast, and any recipe you need a good loaf of bread for.

Sourdough sandwich bread cut into individual slices. The front slice has a pat of butter on it.

Why You Will Love this Sourdough Sandwich Bread Recipe

I provide detailed instruction with photographs so that you can see exactly what you need to do to achieve great results for your sourdough loaf bread.  The bread produced from this recipe is super light and fluffy and soft. It works well for toasting or eating it cold with a cold cut sandwich. The best part? It only requires a few simple ingredients you probably already have. 

How to Use Sourdough Starter to Leaven Sandwich Bread

The strength of your starter is the most important factor that will affect your sandwich bread. If you do not use an active starter that is consistently bubbling and doubling after every feeding, you probably won’t have good results. 

Note

If you need help maintaining your sourdough starter, check out my ultimate guide to caring for your sourdough starter. 

You want to feed your sourdough starter 8-12 hours before you are ready to bake. This ensures you are giving it enough time to consume all the “food” from the feeding before adding it to your recipe. It is okay if it is starting to deflate and fall slightly before baking with it. This is a sure sign it is ready to use and consume more flour in your bread recipe. 

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • 500 g bread flour: I have used all purpose flour in this recipe as well but I recommend bread flour especially if you are a beginner. 
  • 125 g sourdough starter
  • 12 g salt
  • 20 g sugar
  • 1 stick butter
  • 300 g water

How to Make

Step 1: Feed your starter 8-12 hours before baking. If you are pulling your starter from the fridge and it has not been fed in the past few days, you may need to feed it a couple of time before using it. Plan to start feeding your starter 2 days before you want to make your bread and feed it every 12 hours. 

When ready for the final feed before baking, you can feed it one of two ways:

  • Feed your entire jar of starter. I generally maintain a small starter so this is typically the method I use. 
  • In a separate jar, combine 25 g of starter, 50 g of water and 50 g of flour. You will use this entire amount of active sourdough starter in the recipe. 

Step 2: Combine all ingredients except the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. Use the dough hook attachment to mix the dough on low speed until a shaggy dough forms. Cover and allow to rest for 15 minutes. 

Step 3: After the 15 minutes are up, continue to mix on low speed for 5-7 minutes. Allow to rest another 30 minutes. 

Step 4: After the 30 minutes are up, continue to mix the dough on low speed. Slowly add the softened butter to the dough, piece by piece until it is completely incorporated and the dough appears somewhat elastic (about another 5-7 minutes). 

sourdough sandwich bread dough in the bowl of a stand mixer after it has been completely mixed but before the first proof.

Bulk Ferment

Step 5: Now it is time for the bulk fermentation or first rise. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise a warm place until it is increased in size by 75%.

sourdough sandwich bread dough in a bowl after the first proof. The dough has nearly doubled in size.

Shape

Step 6: Line a 1 lb loaf pan with parchment paper so that the paper covers the long edges of the pan but the short edges are free. 

Step 7: Once the dough has risen, transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Spread the dough into rough squares about the width of your loaf pan. 

Step 8: Roll the dough into a cylinder. Tuck the ends slightly and carefully transfer to the prepared bread pan, seam side down. 

Image depicts four steps to shape the sourdough sandwich bread. Step 1 shows dough that is spread into a square roughly the width of the loaf pan. Step two shows two hands rolling the dough into a cylinder. Step 3 shows the hands tucking the ends of the dough. Step 4 shows the dough that was placed in a loaf pan lined with parchment paper.

Expert Tip

If the dough is feeling excessively sticky at this point, do a couple of stretch and folds before transferring it to your work surface. This should reduce the stickiness and help strengthen the gluten structures one last time before the final rise.

Final Proof (Aka the second rise)

Step 9: Cover the bread pan with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise until it is doubled in size and peaking over the rim of the pan. 

This is a double batch of sourdough sandwich bread dough after second proof. The dough is peaking over the edge of the pans.
This image depicts a double batch of sourdough sandwich bread.

Expert Tip

The first few times you make your bread, you may have trouble determining when the bread is done proofing and ready to bake. My advice is to let the dough rise a little bit longer than you think. If your sandwich bread bursts open at the side when it bakes, that is sign it needed to proof a little longer. Do not worry though, it will still taste delicious even if a little under proofed.

Bake

Step 10: Bake at 350F for 50 minutes. The bread will rise even more in the oven and the top should appear golden brown. 

baked sourdough sandwich bread in loaf pan. The crust appears golden brown.

How to Store Homemade Sourdough Sandwich Bread

I recommend storing your bread in a large airtight plastic bag. You can purchase sandwich bread bags or keep them in a gallon storage bag. While you can leave this bread at room temperature, I recommend storing it in the refrigerator. In my experience, my bread gets moldy within a week if left at room temperature but will last several weeks in the refrigerator. 

I hope you enjoyed this simple sourdough bread recipe. If you love sourdough recipes, check out some of my other popular sourdough recipes:

Sourdough sandwich bread cut into individual slices. The front slice has a pat of butter on it.

Sourdough Sandwich Bread

This sourdough sandwich bread is soft and fluffy and straightforward to make. You just need a few simple ingredients and an active starter to make a perfect loaf of bread ready for your favorite sandwiches.
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 50 minutes
Proofing Time 14 hours
Course Breakfast, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 24
Calories 117 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 500 g bread flour
  • 300 g water
  • 125 g sourdough starter active and bubbly
  • 20 g sugar
  • 12 g salt
  • 112 g unsalted butter softened to room temperature

Instructions
 

  • Add the flour, water, sourdough starter, sugar and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment.
  • Set the mixer to low speed and mix until fully combined and a shaggy dough forms. Cover and let rest for about 15 minutes.
  • Set the mixer to low speed again and knead the dough for 5-7 minutes. Cover and let rest another 30 minutes.
  • Once again, set the mixer to low speed and slowly add the soft butter to the mixture. Continue to mix until the dough is fully combined and no chunks of butter remain (about 5-7 minutes).

Bulk Fermentation

  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature until it increases in size by about 75% (usually about 6-8 hours).
    Watch the dough rather than clock as the temperature of your home can greatly affect how long this takes.

Shape the Dough

  • Line a loaf pan with parchment paper with the paper coming up the long side of the pan. The short edges of the pan should be free of paper.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface.
  • With floured hands, gently pull the edges of the dough so that it forms a rough square about the width of your loaf pan.
  • Roll the dough into a cylinder and slightly tuck the edges underneath the dough.
  • Carefully transfer the dough to the loaf pan, seam side down.

The Second Rise

  • Loosely cover the loaf pan with plastic wrap.
  • Allow the dough to rise a second time until the dough doubles in size and appears smooth on top. It should be peaking over the top of the loaf pan when fully proofed.

Bake

  • When the dough is ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350℉.
  • Remove the plastic wrap and bake in preheated oven for 50 minutes. The top should appear lightly golden brown when done.
  • Allow to cool in pan for a few hours. Then, remove from pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack at room temperature before transferring to storage bag.

Nutrition

Calories: 117kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 3gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 195mgPotassium: 22mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 117IUCalcium: 5mgIron: 0.2mg
Keyword Sourdough
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