How to Feed Sourdough Starter

Wondering how to feed sourdough starter? Here’s all you need to know about on feeding and maintaining sourdough starter, including how to tell if your sourdough starter is bad.

how to feed sourdough starter | feeding sourdough starter | maintaining sourdough starter | storing sourdough starter | sourdough starter container

Got a sourdough starter? If you’re baking sourdough bread at home and suddenly mom or dad to a sourdough starter, the new responsibility might feel overwhelming! Luckily, feeding and maintaining sourdough starter is quite simple. As part of our series How to Make Sourdough Bread: The Simplified Guide, we’re showing you how to feed sourdough starter. A sourdough starter is essential for making sourdough bread. And in order to have bread on the regular, you have to learn to feed sourdough starter to keep it happy and healthy. Keep reading for how to feed sourdough starter, storing and maintaining sourdough starter, and how to tell if sourdough starter is bad.

Watch the video to learn how to feed sourdough starter

But first, here’s our video on the process: watch Alex show you how to feed sourdough starter!

Finding a sourdough starter

A sourdough starter, also called levain, is a fermented dough filled with natural yeast. The starter is used to make sourdough bread rise and give it that characteristic sour flavor. If you’ve ended up here, we assume at this point you already have a sourdough starter on hand.

But if you don’t have a sourdough starter, did you know you can make it at home? Here’s our guide on how to make sourdough starter, complete with all our tips. You also can get a sourdough starter from a friend or purchase it online…but what’s the fun in that? Making sourdough starter takes very little hands on time. It takes 5 days of waiting time before the starter is active and ready to go.

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Storing sourdough starter

To store your starter, you’ll need a sourdough starter container. Any covered jar will work, but here’s our the sourdough starter container. Just place the starter right into the container, which is now his or her home. (Note: Over time the starter’s home can become gummy: every week or two, take the starter out of the container and wash it, then replace the starter and follow the normal feeding instructions below.)

You’ll want to store your starter in the refrigerator until you’re ready to make bread. When you make bread, you’ll feed the sourdough starter the night before (see the recipe below), then return the sourdough starter to the refrigerator until you’re ready to bake again.

how to feed sourdough starter | feeding sourdough starter | maintaining sourdough starter | storing sourdough starter | sourdough starter container

Feeding sourdough starter

So, you’ve got a sourdough starter and it lives in its container in the refrigerator. What’s the frequency for feeding sourdough starter?

  • You can leave the starter in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days at a time between feedings. We recommend feeding sourdough starter at least twice a week for best results.
  • Remember, if you’re planning to make bread on a given day, you’ll feed sourdough starter the night before you bake. So depending on how often you want to make bread, you may end up feeding your starter more often.
  • For us, we make a loaf of sourdough bread about 4 times a week, so we feed it 4 times per week (every night before we make bread). If we have a week where we plan to make less bread, we’ll still feed the starter 2 times per week, regardless of whether we’re making bread.
  • What are the actual steps for how to feed sourdough starter? Go to the recipe below.

If you’re actively using your starter to make our Sourdough Bread recipe, the instructions in the recipe below will allow just enough leftover sourdough starter to have enough starter for the next day’s bread. If you’re not making bread every few days, you’ll need to discard excess starter as part of the feeding process to keep it healthy and happy.

What is a healthy sourdough starter like? A healthy starter smells funky and fruity, in a good way. It’s a floury paste that’s lightly bubbly. If things start to take a turn, see the Troubleshooting section below.

how to feed sourdough starter | feeding sourdough starter | maintaining sourdough starter | storing sourdough starter | sourdough starter container

Troubleshooting your sourdough starter

Every once in a while something can go wrong with your starter. If you don’t feed it often enough, the sourdough starter starts to smell like alcohol. You may also find that the starter loses its vibrancy and doesn’t get too bubbly and active after a feeding. Don’t worry, you can always get the starter to recover. Throw away all but about a teaspoon of the starter and nurse it back to life following the instructions for making a sourdough starter. It should take 5 days or less to be healthy again.

how to feed sourdough starter | feeding sourdough starter | maintaining sourdough starter | storing sourdough starter | sourdough starter container

What if I go on vacation?

What if you want to go on vacation: what should you do with your sourdough starter? In our experience, we’ve found that if you’re leaving for over a week, it’s best to discard your sourdough starter and start again with the process of making a sourdough starter. Of course if you have a friend or family member who can babysit your sourdough starter, that’s even better! Actually, in Sweden you can hire a babysitter for your sourdough starter. So maybe it’s not so far fetched!

Alright, if you’ve made it this far you’re ready to learn how to feed sourdough starter. See the recipe below!

Related posts

This post is one of three in our series on making sourdough bread:

Print
Sourdough starter

How to Feed Sourdough Starter


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (46 votes, average: 3.76 out of 5)

  • Author: Alex
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 80 grams starter 1x

Description

Wondering how to feed a sourdough starter? Here’s all you need to know about on feeding and maintaining sourdough starter, including how to tell if your sourdough starter is bad.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 50 grams all-purpose flour
  • 50 grams filtered water (room temperature)

Instructions

  1. At around 9:00 pm, take the active starter out of the refrigerator.
  2. Remove and throw away all but about 1 tablespoon of the starter.
  3. Add 50 grams of purified water and 50 grams of all purpose flour.
  4. Stir, cover, and leave out on a counter at room temperature overnight.
  5. The following morning when the starter is active and bubbly and about doubled in volume, use in bread or place it in the refrigerator.  (We find that the starter takes about 12 hours in our home to double in size; timing in your home may vary slightly.) If you’re using the sourdough starter in bread, place any remaining starter that you didn’t use in the recipe in the refrigerator until the next feeding.

Notes

Note: Our sourdough bread recipe calls for 80 grams of sourdough starter, leaving 20 grams of starter for the next batch. If you’re using a different bread recipe that calls for more starter, you can add any amount of flour and water as long as the weights are the same.

  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: French

Keywords: Bread, Sourdough Bread, Sourdough Starter, Feeding, Starter, Baking,

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

72 Comments

  • Reply
    Nadia
    March 26, 2019 at 3:31 am

    Hi couple cooks,
    I made sour dough using your recipe and the checklist was like super helpful
    Thanks alot.
    One question though, i didn had bread flour in hand so i used 150 grams of wholewheat and 200 grams of all purpose.
    The bread was fine but had a little gummy texture, not chewy but gummmy, what could be the reason?
    Bread flour makes that much difference i wonder.
    Thanks again

    • Reply
      Alex
      March 26, 2019 at 12:05 pm

      Hi! Yes, the protein in the bread flour lends a strength and chewiness to the bread that would be missing otherwise!

    • Reply
      Angel
      January 7, 2020 at 12:05 am

      Sourdough starter at 50% hydration which is a stiff leaven.
      It can stay refrigerated for months and do not need to feed every week

      • Reply
        Robert D Hill
        April 9, 2020 at 3:53 am

        That’s my experience as well though my sourdough is a milk one that’s been in my family for about 70 years. My grandma got it from a friend who’s family had it about 60 years. It originally came to Washington state on covered wagon from Arkansas. My grandma (and I) have forgot to feed it for months and it always bounces back quickly.

        • Reply
          Kelsey
          April 24, 2020 at 12:30 am

          Uhm JEALOUS ROBERT! What a cool story, thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    Shannon
    April 12, 2019 at 12:31 pm

    How do you share a starter? Do I give them the part I would usually discard?

    • Reply
      Alex
      April 12, 2019 at 12:35 pm

      Hi! Yes, just feed the part you’d normally discard! You can share with a new friend every day :)

  • Reply
    Phoenix Haynes
    April 14, 2019 at 12:15 am

    Okay, two questions:

    1. I’m on day 5 of the starter process (so it should be ready to use) but my starter doesn’t seem to be rising and falling much as far as I can tell. Does the float test really work? whats the best way to make sure my starter is active and ready to bake?

    2. The starter smells pretty good, no liquid sitting on top, and no rancid alcohol smell, but the bubble are very small/ almost foamy and only on the top. I don’t see any around the sides or bottom of the jar. The starter is also a more liquid consistency than I’ve had with other starters in the past. Almost like crepe batter. Is this okay or should it be more gelatinous ?

    Thank you!

    • Reply
      Alex
      April 14, 2019 at 10:44 am

      Hi!

      It sounds to me like maybe you just need one more day. I’d switch to the standard feeding so that you get that thicker consistency. Discard all but about 1 tablespoon of your starter and I would think it will look good tomorrow!

  • Reply
    Julie
    May 12, 2019 at 12:36 pm

    Hi- first of all, thank you so much for the printable checklist! My starter is looking great and I have all my tools ready to start my first loaf! Question: your recipe says to leave it proofing in the fridge overnight – but can I leave it in the fridge longer – like, 20 hours?? Thank you!

    • Reply
      Alex
      May 12, 2019 at 8:27 pm

      Hi! It will continue to proof the longer it is in the refrigerator. 20 hours is probably right on the edge of overproofed. If you do this, make sure to have your fridge on the coldest setting!

      • Reply
        Alex
        May 12, 2019 at 8:38 pm

        You could also place it in the refrigerator right after putting it in the basket :)

  • Reply
    Ryan
    September 16, 2019 at 5:11 am

    In terms of going on holiday, I’ve frozen my starter before. When I got back, I simply allowed it to warm to room temperature, gave it 2 days of feeding without going into the fridge and it was right as rain.

    If you have a dehydrator, you can also make starter ‘chips’ by spreading it it thin on a piece of baking paper and allowing it to fully dehydrate. Have managed to revive a starter chip after about 3 weeks with no issues. Makes a handy way to share with friends by post.

  • Reply
    Daniela
    October 2, 2019 at 11:00 am

    Hi there,

    I just completed the 5 days and the starter is more liquid than thick. It does not smell bad but it doesn’t look super healthy either. I’m thinking it might have been too warm? Thank you!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      October 2, 2019 at 1:42 pm

      You should be able to recover it! Try just doing a standard feeding keeping 1 tablespoon.

  • Reply
    Marisa
    January 29, 2020 at 10:48 am

    Hi! I was wondering when you are in the proofing steps and keeping the dough in a warm place, are you putting it back in the ziplock bag and then in the oven every time? Is the plastic bag safe to go in the oven at 80 degrees? Thank you!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      January 29, 2020 at 10:54 am

      Hi, yes we’re returning to the ziplock for each proof. 80 degrees is fine for plastic (a lot less heat than being outdoors in the summer!).

  • Reply
    Paul
    February 9, 2020 at 2:58 pm

    Most advice that I have seen on feeding a starter says to use equal parts starter, flour and water. Can you explain why you like to only use only 1T of starter to 50 grams each of flour and water.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      February 10, 2020 at 9:07 am

      We find that 1 tablespoon is the perfect feeding for an active starter in 12 hours. Your welcome to adjust to your kitchen temps!

  • Reply
    Martha
    February 25, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    Hello Alex and Sonja,

    Just discovered your site and am giving it a go. One question. Tomorrow is day 5 for the starter. It looks good but I am not baking. I have been feeding at about 11 am. So, do I simply place my starter in the refrigerator tomorrow morning instead of feed again? Or, do I feed and then place in the refrigerator immediately after? Thanks, Martha

  • Reply
    Kerrie
    March 2, 2020 at 2:31 am

    You’re Blog is so fun and informative! Our fam of four just made our first sourdough bread using your recipe and the videos were so helpful. The loaf turned out beautifully and it’s oh so yummy! One clarifying question I have is about feeding the starter. If I want more starter for other recipes, do I need to add 1Tbsp of starter per 50 grams of both water and flour or do I just use 1Tbsp of starter to whatever equal parts of flour and water depending on how much I need?

    I’ve been putting 2Tbsp of starter in a jar and adding 100 grams of flour and 100 grams of water. It looks nice and bubbly after 12 hours at room temp. Am I on the right track?

    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      March 2, 2020 at 11:38 am

      There’s not exact math to it, but keeping the same ratio as you did should work just fine.

      So glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Reply
    JimC
    March 17, 2020 at 3:46 pm

    My question is whether the starter should be stored in glass jar with a tight-fitting lid (whether storing in the frig or feeding it in preparation for baking. This doesn’t seem to be mentioned in your instructions. I would assume it does but I’m a rank amateur and need some guidance.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      March 17, 2020 at 7:53 pm

      Yes! It needs a little air to breathe, but as long as it isn’t filling the entire jar there’s plenty of air inside.

  • Reply
    Wannie
    March 24, 2020 at 11:22 am

    Can u add a pkg of yeast if starter doesn’t rise

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      March 24, 2020 at 1:56 pm

      I would give the starter some more time rather than adding yeast!

  • Reply
    Elizabeth
    March 29, 2020 at 12:43 pm

    I’ve a starter I’ve not used in a very long time in the refrigerator. Can I revive it?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      March 29, 2020 at 7:54 pm

      Yes! It should revive after a few days of feedings.

      • Reply
        Elizabeth
        March 30, 2020 at 3:09 pm

        Should I dump all but a small amount before feeding?

  • Reply
    Kate
    April 7, 2020 at 10:52 pm

    I am on day 5 of creating my starter. It has bubbles but smells like nail polish or nail polish remover maybe??? Help. Is this normal? What did I do wrong??

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 8, 2020 at 10:35 am

      This is probably due to your room temperature being a bit on the warm side. Just keep going with the feedings (only keeping a few tablespoons of the starter). If you see it rise and collapse quickly, feed it again or move it to the refrigerator.

  • Reply
    Kylie
    April 8, 2020 at 12:38 pm

    Hi, I’ve accidentally feed my starter double the amount of flour & water. What should I do?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 8, 2020 at 2:18 pm

      It won’t be an issue!

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    April 9, 2020 at 6:27 am

    Hi I’m on Day 5 of my starter which I normally feed at 1pm every day. It’s doubled in volume and just about floats! I would like to bake a loaf tomorrow using your sourdough bread recipe so what to do next?
    Do I still feed it today at 1pm or do I put it in the fridge and take it out at 9pm this evening, discard all but a tablespoon of starter and add 50g plain flour and water? Thanks

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 9, 2020 at 9:45 am

      Hi! The second option, refrigerate and then feed tonight!

  • Reply
    Jenni Thompson
    April 9, 2020 at 7:27 pm

    Hi! I made my loaf today and I’ll be baking it tomorrow. What do I do with the remaining starter? I most likely won’t be baking another loaf until Saturday. So do I discard all but a tablespoon feed it and put it in the fridge?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 9, 2020 at 9:12 pm

      Just put the whole thing in the fridge and then discard and feed the night before baking!

  • Reply
    Faffi
    April 12, 2020 at 2:59 pm

    Hi! Like many others during quaratine I also started my sourdough journey but I am still a bit confused with feeding the starter and just scared to kill it.
    I got 5 grams of starter from a bakery and last night I fed it 20 grams of water and 20 grams of flour (mix of white flour and whole wheat), it doubled overnight and looked pretty good and bubbly. Now it’s about 24 hours later and I have No idea how to continue this… Can you help me? Greetings from Amsterdam

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 13, 2020 at 10:08 am

      Hi! When it’s peak bubbly it’s ready to use in bread. If not baking today, you can place it in the refrigerator and take it out and feed it again in 3 or 4 days. You just want to be sure to feed it the night before baking!

  • Reply
    Debbie
    April 13, 2020 at 10:02 am

    So I made a sourdough starter and followed your starter directions. Thank you! Question: after feeding my starter in the evening and leaving it out overnight, in the morning when I remove what I need for making bread, do I put remaining starter in fridge right away or do I feed that remaining starter and then place in fridge? The reason I ask is because I have a rye starter that when ready to make bread I take out what I need for recipe, feed it then put it in fridge, so just clarifying what you recommend for your starter. Thanks

  • Reply
    Hansa
    April 13, 2020 at 10:58 am

    I dont have bread flour what can i use instead can maida and whole wheat flour be substituted for it

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 13, 2020 at 11:11 am

      Unfortunately, you need a high protein flour for the sourdough recipe.

  • Reply
    Jesse
    April 13, 2020 at 4:09 pm

    Hi. Sorry, this might sound dumb…I’m a newbie with sourdough starter and trying to learn as much with how-to’s. A neighbor gave me some and she said it’s a lot of fun baking with it. It’s refrigerated.
    One site said I must feed it 3x before I can use it. So after the first feeding, do I discard again some of the starter and retain just what I need and feed it? Or, do I feed the entire thing with water & flour with the original measurements I used as the first feeding?
    I am totally lost here….And then I saw your site and you said only 1 feeding prior to baking with it.
    Help, please…

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 13, 2020 at 9:14 pm

      Hi! If it’s an active starter that your neighbor has been using, one feeding should be fine. Just discard most of the starter and feed with the measurements seen here!

  • Reply
    Stacy
    April 14, 2020 at 5:44 am

    Hi,
    I started a starter from scratch following your instructions four days ago (April 11 at 19h). It has been sitting on the counter in the kitchen at around 21C and I feed it at 19h daily following your instructions. This morning, I noticed a lot of clear liquid in the container & think that means it’s hungry (if I’ve understood correctly). Even though it’s only 11h, I threw out half & added 50g flour & 50g water. Was that the right thing to do? Do I repeat the process again this evening? Does that mean I could start using it to make my first loaf of bread tomorrow? Thank you for your help. Anxious to try some bread as we’re in lockdown & yeast has not been available here for weeks.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 14, 2020 at 9:23 am

      Hi! That was the right thing to do! If it’s bubbly and doubled in size tomorrow then you can start baking!

  • Reply
    Kathleen Etheridge
    April 14, 2020 at 4:57 pm

    I do not have “proof” setting on my oven. What do I do instead?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 14, 2020 at 9:27 pm

      The sourdough recipe calls for setting up a warm proofing area where the bread can sit between 80°F and 90°F. You can turn on the oven to preheat for about 1 minute and then turn it off before you place the dough in the oven. Or, you can pour a few cups of boiling water into the oven beneath your bowl to raise the temperature. Whatever the case, while the bread is proofing, be careful not to accidentally turn on the oven for any other reason! (We’ve had this happen before, and it’s not pretty!)

  • Reply
    CH
    April 16, 2020 at 10:59 am

    Hi,
    Been researching sourdough lately and following your website as well. I read both the “How to Make Sourdough Starter” page and “How to Feed Sourdough Starter” page. Can you please explain why starter in an active state (post 5 days) needs to be “all dumped except for a tablespoon” on subsequent feeds?? That is throwing out 5-6 tablespoons of starter every time (when not baking), is that not a waste of good active starter?? Is there a science or preference for keeping just 1 tablespoon of starter??

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 16, 2020 at 5:53 pm

      Hi! You can find lots of recipes online for using discarded starter. I only feed my starter when baking, so I don’t have to discard much or any at all.

  • Reply
    CH
    April 16, 2020 at 9:46 pm

    Can you explain why you recommend keeping exactly “1 tablespoon of starter and then discarding the rest” plus 50g flour:50g for feeding is significant? 15g starter : 50:50 flour/water. I want to know these ratios are important to you. I am reading anywhere from keeping 10g starter to 50:50 flour/water to experienced sourdough breadmakers keeping ratios that are way higher in starter content. If the ratio of starter to flour/water is too low, is it true that the starter will not have enough to feed on and it will be “hungry” way sooner than the ~12h mark??

  • Reply
    Nicole
    April 20, 2020 at 11:43 am

    Hi, I’ve followed the instructions for creating the starter… and now on day 6. The starter did not rise after the 12 hours on the counter – does it require a warmer environment?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 20, 2020 at 12:31 pm

      It probably would like a slightly warmer environment if you can!

  • Reply
    Adrienne
    April 20, 2020 at 4:35 pm

    Hi! I do not have a kitchen scale, so I’m unable to weigh out 50 g of flour and water! Can you tell me approximately how many ounces of water would equal 50 g and how much flour (in cups) that would be?

    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 20, 2020 at 10:31 pm

      It’s about 1/2 cup of flour and 2 ounces water.

  • Reply
    Nance
    April 20, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    I am on about day 7 of my starter. Initially I think it was too cold in the house here in New Zealand but now I am putting it in the hot water cupboard. It is looking close to being done. Can I use this initial starter for my first loaf of bread, saving some out to be fed etc for later loaves. Separate question, it seems difficult to mix salt sufficiently well into the dough so that you don’t bite into big clumps of salt. Is that ever a problem?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 20, 2020 at 10:32 pm

      Hi! Once it’s nice in bubbly you can go straight into using it in recipes.

      We don’t have any issue with salt, we just try to sprinkle it evenly across the top.

    • Reply
      Rosie
      May 19, 2020 at 10:27 am

      Dissolve the salt in a Tablespoon of water then poor into dough.

  • Reply
    lynne
    April 24, 2020 at 5:35 am

    Hi! I have been absorbing all the information to make my first sourdough and found your instruction so helpful! I purchased a starter, which I had in the refrigerator for 2 days and used just 1 tablespoon of that starter into another glass jar and added the 50g flour and water to feed it the night before so I could start to preparing the dough the next morning. [I did not want to use the entire purchased starter in case I needed to have some backups.] 1) Was it ok to just use 1 tablespoon of the purchased starter and assume that after feeding the next morning my starter should be ready to use because it is from an established starter? The reason I ask is that my starter did not really go so well so I discarded and fed again. 2) So say that my starter was nice and bubbly and doubled, then you start the first step in preparing the dough – mixing flour and water and rest for 1 hour. That is quite a bit of time before you add your starter in step 2, so my question is when I see that my starter is ready, then I immediately do step 1, is the starter still going to be ok after probably over 1 hour before it is added in the 2nd step? I’m still really trying to understand starters but would like to feel confident that once I start the dough process with a ripe starter it will still be in that condition by the time I get to adding it in the dough. Also I live in a hot and humid climate all year around so I’m wondering how this might effect the success of my starter. Look forward to your advice on this.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 24, 2020 at 1:04 pm

      Hi! A well-fed starter should be active and bubbly for a few hours, so you don’t need to worry about adding it to the dough at an exact moment.

      Regarding the hot and humid climate, it will probably shorten the time to feed your starter (and maybe your proofing times for the bread). You’ll just need to make a few loaves to hone it in.

      Good luck!

  • Reply
    Nance
    April 24, 2020 at 8:45 pm

    Hi Alex. Thanks for your ongoing help and great recipes. My first loaf was a great success but I have a few questions. When the dough is shaped and placed in the banneton for 30 minutes, do you proof it on the counter top at room temperature or proof it in the proofing area (at a warmer temperature). My loaf was a bit flat so I think that may have been my mistake. Also, I don’t have a banneton. Is it best to use a colander lined with a floured linen cloth? If I do that, should I put the whole colander in a plastic bag or just cover the top in plastic wrap? Also, my oven doesn’t go to 515 (only about 480) so I think I was supposed to bake it longer than 17 minutes in the first go around? I am in lock down and running out of all purpose flour and will have to use half whole wheat in my next loaf. Should the recipe stay the same other than that? Thanks for your help.

  • Reply
    Marni Durkan
    April 27, 2020 at 2:52 am

    Hi Alex, I made my first ever sour dough starter. I put it in a cupboard in the laundry room (which is warmer then my kitchen) 18 hours later it has doubled! Do I start to feed it or do I stir it vigorisly and put I t in a cooler place?
    Thank you
    Marni

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 27, 2020 at 1:22 pm

      Hi! You should feed it once it has doubled or store in refrigerator until ready to feed+bake. Good luck!

  • Reply
    Lesley
    May 6, 2020 at 11:11 am

    Hi, thanks for all the amazing info and guidance. One problem I have is that I have run out of all purpose flour to continue to feed my starter. I only have self raising flour or white bread flour??? I have looked in all the shops and online, can’t seem to find? Which is best to feed with?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      May 6, 2020 at 12:31 pm

      I’d do the bread flour!

  • Reply
    If'at Bar- Thal
    May 8, 2020 at 9:11 am

    Hello from Israel!
    I recently found your blog and have been enjoying your varied recipes, videos, and tips, thank you so much!
    I saw this question above which was not answered and was wondering if you could please provide an answer?
    Debbie, April 13th:
    So I made a sourdough starter and followed your starter directions. Thank you! Question: after feeding my starter in the evening and leaving it out overnight, in the morning when I remove what I need for making bread, do I put remaining starter in fridge right away or do I feed that remaining starter and then place in fridge? The reason I ask is because I have a rye starter that when ready to make bread I take out what I need for recipe, feed it then put it in fridge, so just clarifying what you recommend for your starter. Thanks

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      May 8, 2020 at 9:58 am

      Hi! We place the remainder in the fridge and then feed it in the evening (if baking the next day), or after a couple of days.

  • Reply
    Kristina E.
    May 13, 2020 at 1:25 pm

    My starter is continually rising to it’s peak at around 4 hours, and then falling back down. I’m discarding and feeding at the bottom, but this has been roughly every 8 hours. I have not been refrigerating it this week since I want to ensure it’s healthy for weekend baking, and a friend needs a new starter as well. The temp is roughly 70 degrees on the counter. I’m probably keeping 4-5 TBSP of the starter each feeding. Would this account for the rapid ascent/descent? I’m a bit afraid to pour out so much.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      May 13, 2020 at 6:05 pm

      That sounds like a super-active and vibrant starter. I’d probably decrease to just 1 tablespoon of starter so that it doesn’t burn through the flour so quickly. You can always split the starter in two if you want to be extra sure you have a good one :)

  • Reply
    Fay Jones Day
    May 29, 2020 at 6:59 pm

    Hi- I’m wondering if the sourdough starter will become active in a cold house. We don’t keep our house very warm Thanks.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      June 1, 2020 at 12:41 pm

      I would try to find a warm place if you want to get a good starter. Some people use their oven light for a bit of warmth or a heating pad.

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