The *BEST* Not-So-Intimidating Sourdough Bread Recipe for Beginners

I began making bread about eight years ago in a bread machine, and I thought I was a pretty awesome baker. Still, there was one recipe that always intimidated me: sourdough bread.

My husband was the one who researched how to make sourdough bread, and he was the one who began making it for our family. It was delicious and would be devoured every time he made it. Then he taught me. I was intimidated at first due to the fact I was not using the bread machine to do the work for me, but I learned quickly! There was nothing to be intimidated about and the KitchenAid was just as, if not more, useful than my bread machine.

Now this recipe is a staple at our house that I typically make on a Wednesday morning. I can even predict that the first words my daughter will say when she comes downstairs will be, “Honey and bread, please.”

Whenever I have brought this bread in to work or given it as a gift to someone I get asked what bakery it came from. I always smile and say, “I made it.”

This recipe comes from the King Arthur website, but I have put in some extra advice that will help in making this recipe successful.

sourdough bread recipe

Rustic Sourdough Bread Recipe

(From King Arthur)


1 cup “fed” sourdough starter
1 ½ cups lukewarm water
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
2 ½ teaspoons salt
5 cups of All-Purpose Flour


1. Mix:

Place all ingredients into mixing bowl in the order of ingredients list.

Using your dough hook, knead all ingredients. Once all the ingredients have come together knead for 7 minutes. (If dough is sticky add ¼ cup of flour at a time until dough is no longer sticky. Dough may be stickier during humid times and this is okay.)

2. Rise 1:

Place dough in a bowl that has been lightly greased and cover with lid to rise. Let dough sit for about 90 minutes or until it’s double in size.

3. Shape: 

Gently divide the dough in half. It will be okay if it deflates a little.

You have two options:

The first option is to shape the dough into two oval loaves, approximately 10” to 11” long. This will give you a more rustic look. Place onto a grease baking sheet.

The second option is to lightly grease two bread pans. Make sure the dough is spread out and covers the bread pan across. (This is my adaptation to the recipe and works great when using the bread for sandwiches or toast.)

4. Rise 2:

Cover and let rise for about 1 hour. With 20 minutes left on the second rise preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

5. Bake:

Before placing loaves into the oven spray with lukewarm water. (If a dark crust is not desired don’t spray with water.)

*If using option one make two diagonal cuts with a bread knife into each loaf.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until there is a golden brown crust. Internal temperature should reach 190 degrees F. Remove from the oven and bread pan. Place bread on a cooling rack.

Let bread cool before storing bread.

6. Enjoy!

Once you have made this recipe you will want to find ways to incorporate it into meals. Here are two of my favorite meals we use our bread in.

French Toast

Grilled Cheese

What kinds of breads do you make? Share your recipe below.


Angelica was raised in West Liberty just a hop, skip, and a jump away from the Iowa City. After getting married to her high school sweetheart and living in the D.C. metro area, they decided it was not where they wanted to raise a family, and moved back to Iowa in 2012. They welcomed their daughter nine months after moving back. Then in 2018 added a yellow lab to their family. Angelica enjoys running, reading, and binge watching shows with her husband. She loves Disney, Reese's, and being a mom.



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