Easy sourdough bread

Don't be daunted by making a sourdough bread starter at home – this easy, overnight version makes a lovely loaf

  • Prep:30 mins
    Cook:30 mins
    plus overnight fermenting and rising
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 172
  • fat 1g
  • saturates 0g
  • carbs 33g
  • sugars 0g
  • fibre 3g
  • protein 6g
  • salt 1.3g


  • 100g strong white bread flour
  • 100g organic dark rye flour
  • ½ x 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • 400g strong white bread flour
  • ½ x 7g sachet fast-action dried yeast


Develop the flavour

The longer it takes a bread dough to rise, the more flavour it develops. For the best flavour and the slowest rise, leave the dough in the fridge – the cool temperature means that it will take longer for the yeast to work.

For regular bakers

If you want to make this bread on a regular basis, keep back about 100ml of the starter and a small handful of the kneaded dough. Put the two together in a jar, keep it in the fridge and use as the base to your next starter and loaf. Repeat every time you make a loaf. The pre-fermented base to a new starter will give it even more of a sourdough flavour.



  1. To make your starter, place all the ingredients in a bowl and add 250ml cold water. Mix together thoroughly with a spoon until you have a spongy mixture, then cover with cling film and leave at room temperature at least overnight, but up to 24 hrs if you have time.

  2. To make the bread dough, tip the ingredients into a clean bowl and add 1 tbsp fine salt, 200ml cold water and your starter. Bring all the ingredients together to a dough, adding a splash more water if too stiff, then tip out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for at least 10 mins until smooth, elastic and springy (this will take 5-7 mins in a mixer with a dough hook). Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl, cover with cling film and leave until doubled in size – about 1 hr at room temperature, 3 hrs in the fridge (see tips, below).

  3. Tip the dough onto a floured surface and gently shape into a round – you don’t want to knock too much air out of the dough. Dust a piece of baking parchment heavily with flour and sit the dough on top. Cover with a tea towel and leave to prove for 1 hr until doubled in size.

  4. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Place a sturdy flat baking tray on the middle shelf of the oven and a smaller tray with sides underneath. Dust the dough with flour and slash with a utility knife. Slide the bread onto the hot tray on top and throw a few ice cubes (or pour some cold water) onto the tray below – this creates a burst of steam, which helps the bread form a nice crust. Bake for 25-30 mins until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Leave the bread to cool completely.

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