When is a sourdough starter ready for baking? If it's bubbly, is it time? Here's everything you need to know about baking with a young sourdough starter — how soon is too soon, the signs of readiness, and great discard recipes for a starter that isn't mature enough for baking bread yet!
You just started a sourdough starter… when can you bake with it?
Is there such a thing as too soon?
I'm sharing the answer on today's #AskWardee! Keep reading or watching below to learn more!
The Question: When Is My Sourdough Starter Ready For Baking?
Sarah S. asked:
Hi, Wardee- After listening to your podcasts and watching your YouTube videos on sourdough, I've decided to try my hand at it again.
Here's my question: I'm on day three (started the new starter batch on Saturday- today is Monday) and while I've only started with 1/4 cup each of Berkey water and organic Rye flour, my starter is already bubbling like crazy and is even overflowing my glass pint jar. (And yes, I've been removing half of the starter before feeding it each day). I've wiped down the outside of the jar and shaken the jar a little to knock down the starter. Am I doing something wrong? It can't be that my starter is strong enough to bake with, right? It's only three days old. I've just never had starter react and grow and become bubbly that fast… I'd love any insight or idea have for me. —Sarah
Sarah, thank you for your question!
Because we're featuring your question today's #AskWardee, you're getting a gift — a FREE eBook and Video Package! Our team will be in contact with you so you can choose which one you'd like!
When Is Your Sourdough Starter Ready For Baking?
A sourdough starter might be quite lively in the early days, especially when using rye flour. It might also dip in activity after a few days as the organism balance shifts, and then get active again.
This is quite common and not a reason to throw it out! (Many people do, so sad.)
Just keep stirring and feeding (you can even skip a feeding).
As for when it's ready for baking…
If it's active and bubbly on day 5, even if it went through a lull, then use it sourdough recipes that are not dependent on strong leavening.
Wait a few weeks to make sandwich bread, because the strong leavening power will take that long to develop in a sourdough starter's culture.
However, you can make this no-knead einkorn bread (click here for free recipe) sooner than a few weeks because it's not dependent on the starter's leavening power quite as much as regular sandwich bread.
That's pretty much it!
FREE No-Knead Einkorn Sourdough Bread Recipe
Einkorn is a bit tricky to figure out how to use because it behaves differently.
Yet… you can skip the learning curve by using my free and AMAZING no-knead einkorn bread recipe!
The recipe is FREE, easy, and healthy, and takes only 15 minutes of hands-on time!
And soon your family will be saying: “This is the best bread EVER!”
Any Questions Or Comments?
If you have other questions or comments about your own experience with using a brand-new sourdough starter, be sure to leave them in the comments!
- FREE No-Knead Einkorn Sourdough Artisan Bread Recipe
- How To Make An Einkorn Sourdough Starter
- Sourdough A to Z eBook or eCourse
- Einkorn Baking eBook or eCourse
- Sourdough English Muffins
- Sourdough Pancakes
- Sourdough Waffles
- Sourdough Pizza
More Sourdough Posts from the #AskWardee Show
- Does Sourdough Bread Get Moldy? +Troubleshooting Dense Sourdough Bread #AskWardee 110
- 11 Tips For Lighter, Less Dense Sourdough Bread #AskWardee 053
- The Best & Healthiest Flours For Sourdough #AskWardee 065
- Sourdough Troubleshooting: How To Know When Your Starter Is Strong Enough For Bread-Baking
- Feeding Your Sourdough Starter… More Than Just Flour! #AskWardee 150
- Is Aged Flour *Really* Better For Sourdough? #AskWardee 122
- Can I Use Reverse Osmosis Water For Fermenting, Culturing, & Sourdough? #AskWardee 138
- How To Transition A Sourdough Starter To Einkorn #AskWardee 069
What Is The #AskWardee Show?
The #AskWardee Show is the weekly show devoted to answering your niggling questions about Traditional Cooking: whether it's your sourdough starter, your sauerkraut, preserving foods, broth, superfoods or anything else to do with Traditional Cooking or your GNOWFGLINS lifestyle.
I share tips and resources, plus answer your questions about Traditional Cooking!
When: Wednesdays at 10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern
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- Tweet your question to @TradCookSchool on Twitter; use hashtag #AskWardee
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What's your experience with a “baby” sourdough starter and what it's capable of baking? Share in the comments!
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