Learn to make a simple loaf of homemade artisan sourdough bread that has a soft interior and a golden crispy crust in a fraction of the time it takes to make traditional sourdough bread!
This super easy sourdough bread recipe uses yeast instead of a starter which means you’re enjoying homemade bread by the end of the day. It’s a no-knead recipe perfect for beginner bakers and anyone who loves sourdough bread but doesn’t have a week to wait for a sourdough starter. Healthy blueberry lemon bread or gluten-free pumpkin bread are other quick bread recipes to try!
Quick & Easy Sourdough Bread Without Starter
I love the taste of sourdough bread. That slight tang, soft crumb, and crusty exterior is everything I want in a loaf of bread. It’s perfect for toasting, stuffing with my favorite sandwich fillings, making homemade croutons, and even just breaking off pieces of it to sop up the remaining sauce off my plate! The thing is, traditionally, sourdough bread takes an average of about 1 week to get just the starter going, never mind the bread-making process. It’s a process of fermenting the dough, which is great for digestion among other things, but sometimes I just don’t have that kind of time!
There is a simple solution to this. Using just a sourdough starter and basic pantry staples for the dough, this easy, no-knead, sourdough recipe is a major time saver. When made without a starter, but with yeast instead, you get the same results as classic sourdough bread, but in a fraction of the time. The dough and bread are all made on the same day and anytime I can have a basket of sourdough bread by dinner time, I’m in. Follow along with this easy guide and by the end of the day, you too will have your very own sourdough bread!
Why this recipe works
- A quick and easy sourdough bread made with 4 simple ingredients!
- Perfect for beginners who might be hesitant to try making bread from scratch.
- It’s delicious and rivals the flavor of a traditional loaf of sourdough.
- Made without a starter which means no waiting a week, and feeding it daily.
- Made with sourdough yeast which is what gives it that signature sourdough flavor.
- There’s no kneading involved, which is as low maintenance as you can get.
- The versatility of this bread knows no bounds. Use it on the side of soups, stews, and chili, or as a sandwich, grilled cheese, and more!
- All-purpose flour – The foundation for the structure of the bread.
- Instant sourdough yeast – Red Star Platinum has sourdough yeast. Not to be confused with regular dry instant yeast. The latter won’t get you sourdough!
- Salt – Needed to bring out a little depth of flavor.
- Warm water – The liquid needed to bring the dough together, as well as help incorporate the yeast.
How to Make this Recipe
This recipe is made with 5 minutes prep time, 45 minutes bake time and a few added hours of rising time. It’s an easy way to have a basket of sourdough bread by dinner time!
Step 1: In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast, and salt. Then, slowly add the warm water and stir well until the dough forms.
Step 2: Cover the dough with a damp towel and let the bread rise at room temperature for 2 hours before transferring to a floured work surface to stretch and fold it. Create a round dome shape and tuck the edges into the bottom.
Step 3: Let the dough rise for another hour. With 30 minutes left of rising time, line an enameled Dutch oven with a piece of parchment paper and place it, with its lid on, into a cold oven and turn the oven on to preheat.
Step 4: At the end of the dough’s rise time, using a lame or a very sharp knife, slice 3-4 shallow cuts along the top of the bread, if desired. Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven, remove the lid and sprinkle the parchment paper with a bit of flour.
Step 5: Reduce the oven temperature and place the dough onto the parchment-lined Dutch oven, cover with the lid and bake for 30 minutes before removing the lid for the remainder of the bake time.
Step 6: Lift the bread out of the Dutch oven by the parchment paper and allow it to cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!
Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment: Add the flour, yeast, and salt to the bowl. Add the water and beat on medium-low until the dough is sticky. Then cover and let rise for 2 hours.
Using a baking sheet instead of a Dutch oven: Once the dough has risen for the additional 1 hour, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and sprinkle with a little flour. Place dough on top and cover tightly with foil around the pan. Bake for 30 minutes before removing the foil to finish baking for an additional 10-15 minutes.
- You want to make sure to use warm water to help activate the yeast. Anything too hot will kill it and anything too cold won’t allow it to do what it needs to do.
- Try other flours if you’d like. Bread flour, rye, and whole wheat all would work nicely.
- Don’t forget to use sourdough yeast. If you use regular yeast, well, there’s nothing wrong, but it’s just not going to be sourdough bread!
- Some people enjoy adding sour cream or greek yogurt (or a bit of both) with active cultures to their dough ingredients when making bread without a starter. It allows for a little extra richness and tang.
A loaf unsliced can remain uncovered at room temperature for a few hours. Once sliced, however, you want to keep it in an airtight container so it doesn’t dry out. It can remain at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Sourdough bread freezes very well once completely cooled. Since this is a quick and easy version, go ahead and make two loaves at a time and freeze one for later.
Quick Sourdough Bread
- 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 packet Instant Sourdough Yeast like Red Star Platinum
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- 1 ¾ cups warm water 105-110 degrees F
- In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, instant sourdough yeast, and salt.
- Slowly add the warm water and stir well until a dough forms. If you need to add some water for dry spots or left over flour add a tablespoon at a time.
- Cover the bowl with a damp towel for 2 hours at room temperature. (You can also cover the bowl with plastic wrap and poke a few small holes in it to allow gasses to escape.)
- Sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of flour onto a countertop or cutting board and place the dough on it and sprinkle a little over top and smooth it around the outside to make handling it easier.
- Stretch and fold over the sides to create a round dome shaped with the edges tucked into the bottom. (do not work the flour into the dough)
- Let dough rise for one additional hour at room temperature to rise further. You can also place it in the refrigerator overnight. If refrigerated, let dough sit at room temperature for an 1 hour before baking.
- Line an enameled Dutch oven with parchment paper.
- When the dough has 30 minutes left to rise, place the parchment paper lined dutch oven with the lid on into a cold oven and then turn the oven on to preheat oven at 500 degrees F. Allow the dutch oven to stay in the oven for those 30 minutes.
- If desired, slice 3-4 the shallow cuts along on the top of the bread with a sharp knife.
- Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven, remove the lid and sprinkle about a tablespoon of flour on the parchment paper.
- Reduce the heat on the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Place the dough onto the parchment paper in the dutch oven and place the lid on.
- Bake for 30 minutes (with lid on).
- Then remove the lid and bake for another 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from oven, remove bread from the dutch oven by lifting it out by the parchment paper and let cool on a wire rack.
- Follow the exact instructions above for dough prep.
- After the dough has risen for the additional 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven 425 degrees F
- Place parchment paper on a sheet pan and sprinkle with a little flour.
- Place dough on top of the parchment paper and cover with foil with a tight seal around the pan.
- Bake for 30 minutes.
- Then remove the foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and place bread on a wire rack to cool.