Cheater Sourdough Discard Bread

This cheater sourdough discard bread makes a loaf of bread that has all the flavor of sourdough. Yet it has all the ease of commercial yeast.

Hello. My name is Joanne, and I make a cheater sourdough discard bread.

Like many of you, I was given a sourdough starter in 2020. It was started by a friend who died suddenly a few years ago, and it seemed to me that baking sourdough would have the secondary effect of keeping a bit of him alive.

slice of sourdough discard bread with walnuts on a plate with cheese slices.

In those early months of the pandemic, I dutifully fed my starter every few days. I made sourdough discard crumpets. I made sourdough discard crackers. And occasionally I’d guiltily throw the discard away because I wanted to bake something else. But I felt obligated to bake sourdough and to keep my starter alive.

Then something happened. A friend who had been given a sourdough starter unrelated to mine cried out one night on social media. She couldn’t handle one more responsibility. The pandemic was hard enough with all of us trying to keep everyone safe and work from home and remote school the kids and everything else.

In watching her react to her last straw, I gave myself permission to do whatever is necessary in order to make life easier. I give you permission to do the same.

Here’s my cheater sourdough discard bread, made into a loaf of course, with no discarding and a smidge of yeast to get a loaf of bread in about 9 hours. You can of course dutifully feed your starter the night before and skip the yeast, but please don’t feel obligated.

Recipe source

This sourdough discard bread is adapted from the Sea Wolf Bakery instructions for sourdough and uses a small volume starter (20g starter, 80g flour, 80g water). The loaves in the pictures are made with 1 cup of whole wheat flour.

Tips and tricks for this sourdough discard bread

The joy of this sourdough discard bread is that you get all of the flavor of sourdough with the ease of making bread using commercial yeast.

I love this ceramic baker. Note this post is non-sponsored and non-affiliate! I just really love it.

a black Emile Henry ceramic loaf baker.

It gives you a crusty loaf that is perfect for sandwiches.

a loaf of cheater sourdough discard bread on a cooling rack.

Related recipes

Check out other breads for sandwiches like this pretzel bread loaf, Russian rye sandwich bread, or my orange raisin challah.

Cheater Sourdough Discard Bread

5 from 1 vote
Category: Bread
Cuisine: Unspecified
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Rising and resting times (total): 8 hours
Servings: 16
Calories: 106kcal
This cheater sourdough discard bread makes a loaf of bread that has all the flavor of sourdough. Yet it has all the ease of commercial yeast.
Print Recipe


  • 160 grams starter
  • 1 cup (125 grams) whole wheat, rye, semolina, etc flour
  • cup (375 grams) bread flour plus extra, as needed
  • ½ teaspoon instant yeast
  • cup warm water
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup nuts or seeds or other add-ins optional


  • Pour off any liquid on top of the starter. Into a large bowl, put all of the starter except for what is needed to refresh and maintain the starter.
    160 grams starter
  • Add the remaining ingredients except for the salt and mix, initially with a wooden spoon and then by hand until smooth. Add flour as necessary but it will ultimately be a sticky but workable dough. Let rest for 30 minutes.
    1 cup (125 grams) whole wheat, rye, semolina, etc flour, 2½ cup (375 grams) bread flour, ½ teaspoon instant yeast, 1½ cup warm water
  • Add the salt and knead until incorporated. If adding seeds or nuts, add them here and knead to incorporate. Form into a ball and oil the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and put in a warm location. The microwave or a 90°F oven works well here.
    1½ teaspoon salt, 1 cup nuts or seeds or other add-ins
  • Every 20 to 30 minutes for 2 to 3 hours, depending on your zoom call schedule, reshape the dough into a ball. Do not stress if it's shorter or longer than 20 to 30 minute intervals.
  • Shape and let rise. I really love my bread loaf baker, which gives it a great crust and that loaf shape that I need. A dutch oven also works. I lightly butter my bread loaf baker. Let it rise. How long will depend on whether you were using a well-fed or un-fed starter or the amount of yeast.
  • Preheat the oven to 450°F at least one hour before baking.
  • Bake at 450°F in the dutch oven or bread baker for 30 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°, remove the lid and bake about another 15 minutes.


Variations – add in up to 1 cup of toasted nuts or seeds.
Nutritional information was calculated for the base recipe with whole wheat flour and no nuts or seeds.
Time for the recipe will vary depending on your sourdough discard and the yeast you use.


Calories: 106kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.04g | Sodium: 219mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.1g | Vitamin A: 0.4IU | Vitamin C: 0.001mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 0.4mg
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If you too make a cheater sourdough discard bread, please tell me in a comment!

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