Sourdough Rhubarb Snack Cake

Do you grow rhubarb? One of my childhood memories is of a wild and unruly garden our family tried and mostly failed at tending. Rhubarb, however grew plentifully. Mom would take these beautiful stalks of rhubarb, chop them, coat the rhubarb pieces in sugar and transform them into the perfect rhubarb pie (no strawberries…just sweet/tart rhubarb). Ever since, I’ve loved rhubarb with its sweet and tart flavor combination. This sourdough rhubarb snack cake reminds me of the rhubarb pie I grew up eating. Nothing but rhubarb and sweet sugar to give flavor to this cake. The rhubarb melts into the tender cake and sweet crumb topping and makes a delicious snack or dessert on a spring or summer day. The next time you see rhubarb at your local grocery or farmer’s market, pick some up! Add this sourdough rhubarb snack cake to your list to make this summer.

What is the Difference Between Green and Red Rhubarb?

What is the difference between green and red rhubarb? I asked myself this question as we tried growing rhubarb ourselves last year and the stalks mostly came out green with just a hint of red. Apparently, there is not much difference! The flavor of red and green rhubarb is the same. It’s just the color that looks different. The photos from this rhubarb snack cake were taken with rhubarb straight from our garden, which just happened to be more on the green side. Aesthetically, if you prefer the look of red rhubarb choose that when you pick up the rhubarb for this cake. It will taste delicious, no matter the color!

Using Sourdough Discard in Cake

A word of warning: not all sourdough discard is created equal. The age of the discard makes a difference. I prefer using a “fresh” discard that is only a day or two old (at the most). My family didn’t even know there was sourdough in this recipe because the discard I used came straight from the jar–right before I fed my starter again. Some of my family members like the tang in sourdough bread but not baked goods. Discard that has been sitting in the fridge for a week or two gives a lot more “tang” to this cake. You can also use bubbly sourdough starter for less sourdough flavor but all the sourdough benefits.

One Bowl Mixing Method

If you’ve been around for any length of time, you know that I love using the least number of bowls possible in baking (fewer bowls = fewer dishes to wash). While this recipe isn’t exactly a one-bowl recipe, the number of bowls can be reduced with these tips. Use a small bowl to mix together the rhubarb, sugar and lemon zest. Set it aside. To a medium-sized bowl, beat together the butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Add the egg, sourdough discard, sour cream and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. For the dry mixture: add the flour right on top of the center of the wet mixture (don’t mix it in yet…this is the one-bowl method). Add the baking powder and salt on top of the FLOUR. Use a fork to fluff the baking powder and salt into the flour to combine it just a bit. Then use the mixer to combine the dry ingredients with the wet until just combined. Spread this batter in an 8 by 8, parchment-lined pan, top it with the rhubarb and then mix up the crumb topping in the bowl the rhubarb mixture was in–see what I did there? Saved you from washing dishes!

Use a Parchment Sling

Do yourself a favor and use a parchment sling for this snack cake. Non-stick parchment paper makes this easy to lift out of your baking pan and cut into beautiful pieces. I like to lay parchment paper over the top of the pan, cut the corners out of each piece and then press it into the pan. You can watch a video of this process here. I used to think lining a pan with parchment paper was overrated. Nope! Now, I don’t bake without it! My favorite parchment paper is this one from Costco, though it looks like you can snag it on Amazon too. It holds up great for baking crusty sourdough and for all the cookie bars too.

Crumb Topping for Sourdough Rhubarb Cake

Don’t even think about making this cake without the crumb topping. The sweet crumbs nestled in between tart rhubarb is what gives this cake such a unique and delicious flavor. The crumb topping is quick to toss together and gives a deeper flavor by using brown sugar. For quick cleanup, mix up the crumb topping in the same bowl the rhubarb mixture sat in. You don’t even need to wash it out first.

Baking Sourdough Rhubarb Snack Cake

Stick the finished cake in a preheated 350 degree oven. Once the cake is baking, check on it after about 50 minutes by sticking a toothpick or thin knife into the center of the cake. If no wet batter streaks remain, the cake is finished baking. Most ovens vary in temperature, so it’s important to look for the signs of readiness instead of going purely off the written recipe time. Let the cake cool and enjoy!

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If you’re looking for other tart spring/summer desserts, this sourdough blueberry cake and these lemon bars are some of our favorites.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add strawberries to this cake to make a strawberry rhubarb sourdough snack cake?

I have never done this, but I think it would taste good (maybe a tad bit sweeter). I would chop ripe strawberries and replace them for about 1/3 of the rhubarb in the rhubarb mixture.

What can I substitute for sour cream in this recipe?

If you don’t have sour cream on hand, I like to replace this with the same amount of Greek Yogurt. Plain yogurt would work in a pinch.

What is 100% hydration sourdough discard?

100% hydration means an equal weight of water and flour added to a small amount of sourdough. Sourdough can be kept at different hydrations for different purposes. Most sourdough recipes will call for 100% hydration, meaning the sourdough starter was fed with equal weights of flour and water. If your starter is not kept at 100% hydration, you may need to increase the flour in the recipe (for higher hydration–more liquid sourdough) or decrease the flour for lower hydration (stiffer sourdough).

Sourdough Rhubarb Snack Cake

Sweet and tart, tender and delicious, this sourdough rhubarb snack cake is full of summer flavors perfect for a summer party or to enjoy on spring day.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 16 slices

Ingredients
  

Rhubarb Mixture

  • 1 1/2-2 cups rhubarb, chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 Tablespoon lemon juice fresh squeezed is best, save lemon to zest for cake

Sourdough Snack Cake

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup sourdough discard 100% hydration, see recipe notes
  • 2 Tablespoons sour cream or greek yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Crumb Topping

  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 2 Tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • pinch of salt
  • sprinkle of cinnamon

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Chop rhubarb into small, 1 inch pieces and toss into a small bowl. Add 1/3 cup sugar and lemon zest. Stir to combine and set aside.
  • To a medium sized bowl, beat together butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat again until fully incorporated. Add the sourdough discard, sour cream and vanilla extract. Beat together until incorporated.
  • To the middle of the mixture (or in a separate small bowl), add the flour, baking powder and salt. Lightly fluff the baking powder and salt into the flour with a fork (if mixing in a bowl, add it to the wet mixture now) and mix until just combined.
  • Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and gently spread into an even layer using an offset spatula or the back of a spoon. Pour the prepared rhubarb mixture over the cake batter, creating an even layer as best you can.
  • Stir together the crumb mixture: melt the butter and add the brown sugar, flour, salt and sprinkle of cinnamon. Once it comes together, use your fingers to spread chunks of crumb topping evenly over the rhubarb layer.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 50-60 minutes. The cake is finished when a toothpick is inserted into the cake and comes out clean–no wet cake batter. Cool completely and then remove the cake (using your parchment sling) and cut into pieces to serve. Enjoy!

Notes

Sourdough Discard: Not all sourdough discard is created equal. Discard that has been sitting in the fridge for a month will be more sour than discard sitting for a day or two. Using older discard can alter or deepen the sourdough flavor. If you don’t want much sourdough flavor and are making this recipe to use up discard, use a “newer” or less-sour discard. If you want to taste the sourdough flavor, choose a discard that has been in your refrigerator for awhile.
Keyword beginner sourdough, rhubarb, sourdough discard

Disclaimer: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a very small amount from qualifying purchases.

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas. Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

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Chocolate Banana Sourdough Muffins

Brown bananas and sourdough discard are two things that I am constantly looking for ways to use up in my kitchen. I’ve got a good sourdough discard banana bread recipe but this recipe for chocolate banana sourdough muffins hits me straight in my chocolate-loving heart. Chock full of banana, oats and sourdough I can at least pretend the health benefits outweigh the brown sugar. But seriously, these are decadent, delicious and you probably have all the ingredients you need on hand to make them today.

Sourdough Discard in Baked Goods

If you’re new around here, you may not know that I love baking with sourdough. I’ve got a whole bunch of recipes that use sourdough discard and sourdough starter. Because I refresh my sourdough starter often, I end up with quite a bit of leftover discard in my fridge. I don’t like this discard to go to waste, so I find muffins, waffles, crackers, pretzels and rolls to put it into. The sourdough discard enhances the flavor and creates less kitchen waste.

How Long Does Sourdough Discard Last?

Typically sourdough discard can last a couple of weeks in your refrigerator. The longer the discard sits in your fridge, the more fermented and sour it will taste. If you like this flavor in your baked goods, use discard that is older. For a more mellow flavor, use discard that is only a day or two old. If you love baking with sourdough but don’t want any sour flavor, use bubbly sourdough starter instead of the discard. You can use what you prefer. I typically use a 100% hydration sourdough discard–equal weights of water and flour mixed with the starter. If your discard is maintained at a different hydration you may need a splash of milk for a thicker discard or a little extra flour for a thinner discard.

Overripe Bananas and Ground Oats

Anytime you bake with bananas, whether it’s banana bread, banana muffins or these chocolate sourdough banana muffins, you will want to use overripe bananas. These brown or black bananas add a lot of flavor and moisture to the recipe. I also love the use of oats in this recipe. It gives an added punch of whole grains and combined with the flour gives a melt-in-your-mouth muffin texture. Grind up one cup of oats in a blender and mix it right in with the flour mixture. I haven’t used whole wheat flour or gluten-free flour in this recipe, but I bet either would substitute really well.

Good Quality Cocoa Powder

One of the key flavors in this recipe comes from the cocoa powder. I love this cocoa powder and buy it in bulk at Costco. It is deep, rich and flavorful. Use whatever cocoa powder you love, preferably one that has a rich flavor that will transfer through to the muffins. I also always use semi-sweet chocolate chips in this recipe. I prefer the rich taste of chocolate to come through. Good quality chocolate also helps mellow the sourdough discard flavor if you are using an older discard.

Mixing the Muffin Batter

Most of the time when I mix together this muffin batter I’ll smash the bananas, add the brown sugar, eggs, melted butter, vanilla extract and sourdough discard. I’ll mix that together really well until combined. Then I’ll add in the cocoa powder and mix it until incorporated. I’ll add the flour on top of the mixture and pour the salt and baking powder right on top of the flour, taking care not to get the salt/powder in the liquid mixture. I like to fluff the salt and baking powder using a fork to mix it into the flour (this saves me a bowl and makes clean up easier). Then I’ll add the ground oats on top and gently mix together the batter. Over-mixing muffing batter leads to gummy and dense muffins. I like my muffins light and airy so I don’t mind leaving a few little streaks of flour. Add in the chocolate chips for the perfect chocolatey banana muffin and stir gently before scooping and filling a 12 cup muffin tin.

Baking Temperature is The Key to a Nicely Risen Muffin

This recipe calls for baking the muffins at a high temperature of 400 degrees for the first 5 minutes and then reducing the temperature to 325 degrees for the last 15 minutes of baking. The reason: a perfectly risen muffin. The high heat helps activate the baking powder in the muffin which gives the muffin the perfect rise. If you don’t want to do this step, go ahead and bake the muffins at 325 degrees for the whole 20-22 minutes. You may not have quite the same bakery-quality rise, but they will still be delicious.

Don’t wait on these muffins! They are delicious warm and make for the perfect after school snack. Your family won’t even guess they have sourdough discard and whole grains in them. I hope you enjoy these chocolate banana sourdough muffins as much as we do!

These little fingers couldn’t wait to grab a muffin!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is my sourdough discard good for?

Sourdough discard is good for a couple of weeks refrigerated. After a couple of weeks my starter is a little too strong for me to enjoy in baked goods. If I haven’t used it up I will throw it away and start again.

Can I freeze brown and black bananas?

Yes! I love freezing my over-ripe bananas. They can stay good in the freezer for a couple of months. Before you use them in a recipe bring them back to room temperature and discard a bit of the liquid that collects before using in your recipe.

Can I make muffins in a blender?

You may think to use a blender to mix up all the ingredients of this recipe, but I would not. I’ve actually made this recipe in a blender and the muffins turned out gummy and dense. I prefer to mix lightly by hand which results in a light and fluffy muffin.

How do I store extra muffins?

Once muffins have cooled, store in a ziplock bag in the freezer. When you’d like to eat on, reheat in the microwave for 20-30 seconds or let sit at room temperature until thawed.

Does this recipe make mini muffins?

This muffin recipe works great for mini muffins. Bake for 5 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 10-12 minutes more.

Chocolate Banana Sourdough Muffins

Amy
Chock full of banana, oats and sourdough discard, these chocolate banana sourdough muffins are decadent and delicious. These muffins can be whipped up quickly and make the perfect sweet treat, breakfast or after school snack.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Bread, Breakfast, Muffins
Cuisine American
Servings 12 muffins

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats ground
  • 2 bananas over-ripe are best: brown or black bananas
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted and cooled to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sourdough discard 100% hydration (see recipe notes)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Pour 1 cup of old fashioned oats into a blender. Process about 30 seconds until the oats are ground into a fine powder. Set aside.
  • To a medium-sized bowl, mash the brown/black bananas. Add the brown sugar, eggs, melted butter and vanilla extract. Stir together to combine. Add the sourdough discard and stir until combined.
  • To a small bowl, whisk together the ground oats, flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder. Add this dry mixture to the wet banana mixture. Stir until just combined. You should still see some streaks of flour throughout the batter.
  • Add the 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and gently stir again until just incorporated. Over-mixing the batter can result in rubbery muffins. We are looking for light and tender muffins, so stir until just combined.
  • Lightly grease a 12 cup muffin pan. If using muffin liners, spray the muffin liners as well. Using a cookie scoop or 1/4 cup measuring cup, fill each muffin tin 3/4 of the way full.
  • Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 400 degrees. After 5 minutes reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 15 more minutes.
  • Let muffins cool in the pan for about 5 minutes and then turn out and place on a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Notes

Sourdough Discard: I feed my starter with equal weights of water and flour for a 100% hydration starter. If your starter is fed differently, you will want to adjust the amount of flour called for in the recipe; adding more flour for a starter that is fed with a higher percentage of water and less flour for a lower hydration starter. The longer your discard sits in the fridge, the more “tang” it will have. I prefer using a younger discard in this recipe to balance with the other flavors.
Mini Muffins: This muffin recipe works great for mini muffins. Bake for 5 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 10-12 minutes more.
Storage: Once muffins have cooled, store in a ziplock bag in the freezer. When you’d like to eat one, reheat in the microwave for 20-30 seconds or let sit at room temperature until thawed.
Keyword banana bread, banana muffins, chocolate banana bread, sourdough banana bread, sourdough muffins

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Disclaimer: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a very small amount from qualifying purchases.

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas. Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

Sourdough Focaccia

Focaccia bread – where have you been all my life? I have made focaccia before but it wasn’t until I started using my sourdough starter that focaccia has become a staple around our house. Airy, filled with craggy holes and a crisp, crunchy bottom, this focaccia bread is perfect for sandwiches, to dip in some oil and vinegar or just to eat plain. Every time I make this recipe, the bread disappears within a day. My family can’t get enough of it and I don’t blame them. It is show-stopper worthy!

This is an advanced sourdough recipe. Click the links some beginner sourdough tips, tools and recipes.

Jump to Sourdough Focaccia Recipe

Sourdough Takes Time

One thing to always keep in mind when working with sourdough is that it takes time. Sourdough starter is not the same as instant yeast. It’s going to take at least 24-48 hours for this focaccia bread to make it from your mixer to your belly, and that’s okay! Leaven is mixed and rises. Dough is mixed and folded using the coil fold technique. The dough is spread in a pan and left to sit overnight in the refrigerator giving a beautiful crust and flavor to the focaccia bread. You can find a sample schedule below:

Focaccia Sample Schedule

Day 1: Build Leaven

10 PM: Mix the leaven using ripe sourdough starter. Cover and let sit overnight.

Day 2: Mixing/Developing Dough 

8 AM: Mix the dough using a stand mixer (affiliate link). 

9 AM: Use coil folds to strengthen the gluten in the dough. Let the dough bulk rise

12-1 PM: Stretch the dough into an oiled pan, cover and refrigerate overnight.

Day 3: Bake Day

8 AM: Pull Focaccia out of the fridge, let it bubble up and come to room temperature.

12 PM: Top and bake focaccia

High Hydration Dough

This recipe for focaccia uses a very high hydration dough. Hydration is the percentage of flour to water in a recipe. For this focaccia you will be working with a dough that is 85% hydration. This can be a little tricky because the dough is so wet. The benefit of this high hydration is the beautiful crumb that will result in your focaccia. It will be airy, bubbly and have lots of holes throughout. To help deal with such a high hydration dough, keep a jug of water nearby to continuously water your hands as you work with the dough. This prevents dough from sticking to your fingers. The dough is initially mixed in a mixer on low speed for five minutes and then high speed for five minutes to develop the gluten. It will be very, very wet. Don’t worry! You will see a beautiful change in the dough as you proceed with folding the dough over the period of a few hours.

High Gluten Bread Flour

Another trick to help with the high water content is to choose a high gluten bread flour (affiliate link). High gluten bread flour will have a protein content at or above 14%. You can find it here. Please do not substitute all purpose flour for this recipe as written. Transforming the gluten in this dough is very important to a beautifully risen focaccia bread. If you don’t have high gluten bread flour, use bread flour and add vital wheat gluten (affiliate link) to the dough. You can find more information about the benefits of using vital wheat gluten in your bread baking here. Check the recipe notes for the exact measurements. If you are adding the vital wheat gluten instead of using high gluten bread flour, you can also try decreasing the amount of water in the dough by 25 grams to make the dough easier to work with.

Coil Folds

The coil fold is a technique of picking up the dough from the middle and letting the dough fall down onto and under itself, resulting in a coil. Once the dough is initially mixed, it will be very sticky. Place the dough in a rectangular container or glass pan. Cover it and let it sit. After half an hour, open the container and perform 4-6 coil folds. The dough will be very sticky for this first set of coil folds but will strengthen over time. Wet your hands with water. Place your hands under the middle of the dough and pull up. The dough will stretch up (but should not tear) and release from the bottom of the bowl. Once the dough releases, let the dough fall back under itself. Repeat the process for both sides of dough. Then turn the container and repeat the coil fold. Don’t worry if the dough is super sticky for the first one or two coil folds. It will transform into beautiful dough throughout this process.

I find it very helpful to watch this process before attempting it.You can watch the process here:

Focaccia Pan and Refrigerated Rise

After the dough has been developed through coil folds, let it bulk rise for an hour or two. Then it is time to put the dough in a pan. I have tried this recipe in a glass pan and a metal pan – the metal pan (affiliate link) wins hands down. I personally love using this pan. Coat a metal pan with olive oil and transfer the dough to the pan. Stretch lightly to get the dough into all four corners of the pan. If the dough resists, wait a minute and then try again, lightly stretching until the dough fills the pan. Cover the pan and place in the refrigerator overnight. This refrigeration process adds flavor and texture to the focaccia bread. I have baked the focaccia before without the refrigeration, and I think the bread turns out best when it has been refrigerated. If you really can’t wait, you can let the focaccia rise in the pan for another hour or two and get bubbly on top. Then dimple, cover with toppings and bake. For best results, though, use the overnight refrigeration method.

Good Quality Olive Oil and Salt

Another important step to amazing focaccia bread is using good quality olive oil. Olive oil coats the bottom of the pan that the dough is baked in. The focaccia will take on the flavors of the olive oil and give the most beautiful crispy crust. It may just be my favorite part of the focaccia bread. Top the focaccia bread with a flaky sea salt, some fresh herbs and maybe parmesan cheese for a delicious flavor. You can also top focaccia with tomatoes, olives, peppers, really anything that would be delicious in bread.

Dimpling the Dough

Focaccia bread is known for its dimpled look. Once the dough has been refrigerated overnight, pull it out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature (this may take longer in the winter months and shorter in the summer). Watch for the dough to bubble up and see that fermentation happening. Once the dough is bubbly and puffed up, top with desired toppings. Then take your fingers and press down lightly into the dough all around the pan. The entire top of the bread should look dimpled and bubbly. At that point it is ready to bake.

The Perfect Slice

Once the focaccia has been baked at high heat, let the bread sit in the pan for about 5-10 minutes. This lets some of the oil soak into the bread dough a little more and keeps the bottom nice and crispy. Remove it from the pan after 5-10 minutes and let cool completely on a wire rack. We all agree that focaccia is one of those breads that tastes better cooled or room temperature. The flavors have a chance to blend and it is just perfection!

If you’ve never made focaccia before, what are you waiting for? It is one of our favorite breads to snack on and never lasts more than a day around our house. If I ever have any leftovers I love to slice them up and freeze them in a big ziplock bag. I hope you love this recipe as much as we do!

Sourdough Focaccia

Crispy, light and airy sourdough focaccia bread. This recipe is made with 100% sourdough starter and makes delicious bread to eat as a sandwich or to enjoy plain.
Prep Time 1 d 12 hrs
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 1 d 12 hrs 25 mins
Course Bread, Sourdough
Cuisine Italian
Servings 1 9 by 13 pan

Ingredients
  

Leaven

  • 1 teaspoon ripe sourdough starter
  • 50 grams room temperature water
  • 50 grams all purpose flour

Focaccia Dough

  • 100 grams leaven
  • 425 grams room temperature water
  • 500 grams high gluten bread flour (14% protein or higher) see recipe notes for substitution
  • 13 grams salt

Instructions
 

Leaven (night before you mix the bread, day 1)

  • Mix together 1 teaspoon ripe sourdough starter with 50 grams water and 50 grams flour. Cover and let sit overnight at room temperature until bubbly and passes the float test. You can also substitute 100 grams of bubbly sourdough starter if you have some on hand.

Focaccia Dough (Mixing/Developing Dough day 2)

  • To a bowl with a stand mixer, add 100 grams leaven, 425 grams water and 500 grams high gluten bread flour. Mix together with a spoon until a sticky dough forms. Cover and let rest for 20-30 minutes.
  • Add the salt. Place the bowl into the stand mixer and fit it with a dough hook. Mix for 5 minutes on low speed (I use a 2 on my KitchenAid, affiliate link). After five minutes, on low speed, mix for 5 minutes on high speed (6-8 on my KitchenAid). Don't add more flour. The dough will be very wet but stays together.
  • Get your hands wet and transfer the dough to a shallow container. Cover and rest for 30 minutes.
  • Coil Fold 1: Open the container and perform 4-6 coil folds. The dough will be very sticky for this first set of coil folds but will strengthen over time. Wet your hands with water. Place your hands under the middle of the dough and pull up. The dough will stretch up (but should not tear) and release from the bottom of the bowl. Once the dough releases, let the dough fall back under itself. Repeat the process for both sides of dough. Then turn the container and repeat the coil fold. I find it very helpful to watch this process before attempting it. You can watch a video of the coil fold here. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes.
  • Coil Fold 2: Wet your hands. You will notice the dough is stronger than your first set of coil folds. Repeat the coil fold 4-6 times. Cover and rest for 30 minutes.
  • Coil Fold 3: Wet your hands. Repeat the coil fold 4-6 times. Notice the dough is getting stronger and the coil folds are easier to perform. Cover and rest for 30 minutes.
  • Coil Fold 4: Repeat the coil fold 4-6 times. Cover and rest for 1.5-2 hours.
  • After the long bulk rest, prepare a 9 by 13 baking pan (my favorite here, affiliate link) with 1/4-1/3 cup good quality oil. Pour the oil in the pan and tip the pan around to cover the entire bottom.
  • Turn the dough out into the pan and stretch slowly to fill the edges of the pan. Pull up gently on the underside of the dough to stretch it into place. If it doesn't want to stretch, let the dough rest for a minute and then try again.
  • Cover the pan with plastic wrap and stick in the fridge to rest overnight.

Baking the Focaccia (day 3)

  • Take the pan of dough out of the fridge and set on the counter. Let it come to room temperature (2-4 hours). The focaccia dough will begin to bubble up as it sits on the counter.
  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  • After the dough is at room temperature, puffed up and you see little air bubbles, take your fingers and gently dimple the dough. Start at the top and work your way down the dough until the entire focaccia is dimpled and bubbly.
  • Drizzle olive oil over the top of the dough. Top with your choice of fresh or dried herbs, salt and parmesan cheese (or any other topping you would like ie: cherry tomatoes, peppers, olives, etc…).
  • Bake for 25 minutes until bubbly, crispy and light golden brown on top. Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before removing to a wire rack.
  • Cool to room temperature before slicing. Enjoy!

Notes

High Gluten Bread Flour: The high protein content in high gluten bread flour is really important for this recipe because of the high hydration level in this dough. Flour with 14% protein content or more works best. You can buy that here or if you don’t have bread flour, you can substitute with:
440 grams all purpose flour and 60 grams of vital wheat gluten
475 grams bread flour and 25 grams vital wheat gluten
The vital wheat gluten adds enough protein to the flour to give a similar texture to the high gluten bread flour. 
Keyword focaccia, sourdough

Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

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Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

My family has shopped at Costco since I was a child. I was actually brought home from the hospital to Kirkland, Washington (Costco’s headquarters city) where my parents lived at the time. That name may sound familiar to you if you’ve shopped at Costco, because Kirkland is the “Costco” store brand. My grandma used to buy us Costco muffins (you know those giant muffins that are more like cake than muffin?!) and I would always, always pick blueberry. I love the taste of the tart blueberries mixed with a sweet muffin. The minute I cut into this sourdough blueberry crumb cake I had a childhood flashback to those Costco muffins. This cake is thick and full of blueberries. It also has considerably less sugar than a Costco muffin and is jam-packed with tart blueberries. The crumb topping takes it over the top and had me coming back for “tastes” throughout the day. If you are also a fan of blueberry muffins, you’ve got to try this sourdough blueberry crumb cake.

Sourdough Discard or Sourdough Starter?

If you’re new around here, you may not know that I love baking with sourdough. I’ve got a whole bunch of recipes that use sourdough discard and sourdough starter. Because I refresh my sourdough starter often, I end up with quite a bit of leftover discard in my fridge. I don’t like this discard to go to waste, so I find muffins, waffles, crackers, pretzels and breads to put it into. The sourdough discard enhances the flavor and creates less kitchen waste. Not all sourdough discard is created equal, though. The longer the discard sits in your fridge, the more fermented and sour it will taste. If you like this flavor in your baked goods, use discard that is older. For a more mellow flavor, use discard that is only a day or two old. If you love baking with sourdough but don’t want any sour flavor, use bubbly sourdough starter instead of the discard.

Fresh or Frozen Blueberries?

My local Kroger had a great deal on blueberries this past week, so I used fresh blueberries in this sourdough blueberry crumb cake. The fresh blueberries gave this crumb cake delicious flavor. If you can, I recommend using fresh blueberries. If fresh isn’t not an option, you can use frozen blueberries. Truthfully I don’t always have fresh blueberries on hand and more often than not have a bag of frozen berries available. Toss the frozen blueberries in 1-2 teaspoons of flour, lightly coating them before stirring the berries into the cake mixture. This helps so they don’t all fall to the bottom of the cake and will be more evenly dispersed throughout. I’ve made this sourdough blueberry crumb cake with fresh and frozen blueberries and it’s delicious both times. The frozen blueberry cake did take a little more time to bake, so be prepared to add on 5-10 minutes of bake time if you use frozen blueberries.

Blueberry Crumb Topping

One of the things that sets this cake apart is the delicious crumb topping. Melt the butter, add in the dry ingredients and mix together with a spoon until you get a thick and crumbly topping. Use your fingers to sprinkle the crumb topping all over the top of the cake. I also like to dot the top of the cake with a few more fresh blueberries, pressing them in between pieces of crumb topping so that there is blueberry in every bite. Once this crumb topping is baked up, it makes the perfect sweet, crumbly crust. My four year old could be found sneaking pieces of crumb topping all. day. long. And I don’t blame him. It is GOOD!

Baking the Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

Sourdough blueberry crumb cake takes a little over an hour to bake. It bakes up nice and tall and can be cut into 16 good sized pieces. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake the crumb cake for a little over an hour. I like to check on the cake after about 55 minutes (oven temperatures can vary). If the cake is jiggly in the middle, keep baking for another 10 minutes. I’ve found that my cake needs about 65-75 minutes to bake all the way through. If you are using frozen blueberries it may take a little bit longer than if using fresh blueberries.

I love this sourdough blueberry crumb cake. It is not overly sweet (you can add a little more sugar if you want a sweeter cake) and the blueberry really shines through. The cake rises beautifully and would be perfect for a family brunch, to pull out as a special after-school snack or even to drink with a cup of tea on a snowy day. If you are a blueberry muffin lover like me, add this recipe to your “to-make” list. It’s delicious.

Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

Sourdough blueberry crumb cake is a lightly sweetened cake made with sourdough discard, studded with sweet blueberries and topped with a sweet crumb topping. Perfect for breakfast, brunch or a snack, this crumb cake is delicious!
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 16 slices

Ingredients
  

Crumb Topping

  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour

Sourdough Blueberry Cake

  • 1.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sourdough discard or bubbly sourdough starter
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk see recipe notes for substitutions
  • 2.5 cups fresh blueberries see recipe note for frozen blueberries

Instructions
 

Crumb Topping

  • Melt 6 Tablespoons of butter. Add the sugar, vanilla, cornstarch, salt and flour. Mix together until it forms a moist, crumbly topping. Set aside the crumb topping for later.

Sourdough Blueberry Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • To a small bowl, add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Fluff together with a fork. Set aside.
  • Using a stand mixer or a handheld mixer, mix together the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and creamy.
  • Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Mix again, scraping the sides and bottom as needed until fully incorporated, light and fluffy.
  • Pour ¾ cup sourdough discard (direct from the fridge or use ripe sourdough starter) and add to the bowl. Mix together.
  • Add the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Pour in the buttermilk and mix until smooth.
  • Add 2 cups of fresh blueberries (reserving ½ cup for topping) to the batter and stir lightly to combine. See recipe note if using fresh blueberries.
  • Line an 8 by 8 pan (my favorite, affiliate link) with parchment paper. Pour blueberry cake mixture into the pan and spread evenly.
  • Sprinkle the crumb mixture on top of the cake, spreading it evenly and breaking up clumps with your fingers as you go. Dot the top with the reserved ½ cup of blueberries.
  • Bake the cake for 60-75 minutes until baked through. Once the cake has stopped jiggling in the middle, take a sharp knife and stick it straight in the middle of the cake. If it has batter on it, continue baking a few more minutes. If it comes out clean, the cake is finished baking.
  • Cool and slice to serve. The cake stores well at room temperature for a day or two or can be frozen for longer storage.

Notes

Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can substitute 1/4 cup milk mixed with 1/4 cup sour cream.
Blueberries: Fresh blueberries are best for this recipe, but frozen blueberries work too in a pinch. If using frozen blueberries, toss them in 1-2 teaspoons of flour and then gently stir into the batter. This helps the blueberries spread throughout the cake and not sink to the bottom. Using frozen blueberries may also increase the baking time about 10 minutes. 
Keyword blueberry, crumb cake, snack cake

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Disclaimer: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a very small amount from qualifying purchases.

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas. Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

Sourdough French Bread

As a girl living in the San Francisco Bay Area, I used to always add loaves of French bread to the grocery list from our local grocery store. It was light, fluffy and was easily one of my favorite breads of all time. That bread, however, doesn’t exist in many parts of the U.S. so I decided to make my own loaf of French bread using 100% sourdough starter and no commercial yeast in sight. While the end product doesn’t taste exactly like the Bay Area store-bought version (which undoubtedly has commercial yeast, dough enhancers, etc…), it is a stand-alone delicious bread in its own right. This sourdough french bread is initially a little crispy on the outside. As it cools it softens and you cut into a tender, light and just slightly tangy inside. With just a few simple ingredients and an active sourdough starter,  you can have this bread on your dinner table too!

Jump to Sourdough French Bread Recipe

Power-Feed the Starter Before Baking

Before beginning to bake a loaf using 100% sourdough starter, make sure that your starter is active. I like to “power-feed” my starter before beginning a loaf that has no commercial yeast in it. Starters can be trained to rise bread predictably and giving them a little power-feed refresh is the best way to do this. In the past when I have not power-fed the starter, I tend to get a sluggish rise from my bread. There’s nothing worse than spending two days to make a loaf of bread and coming out with a sub-par rise. Note that if your starter is already doubling or tripling in size every time you feed it, you may not need to “power-feed” before mixing your leaven.

How to Power-Feed Your Starter

A day before you mix up the bread, feed your starter 2-3 times in a 24 hour period. To do so, discard all but a few Tablespoons of starter. Feed with ½ cup flour and ¼ cup water (may need a tad more water depending on how you scoop your flour). Mix, mark your jar and let rise. About 6-8 hours later repeat the process, noting how much your starter rose. Discard starter for the second time (all but a few tablespoons), feed the remaining starter again and mark the jar. Six to eight hours later, before you go to bed, repeat the process a third time, discarding and feeding. When you wake up the next morning, your starter should be doubling or tripling in size (check it out with the marked jar). This is the kind of activity you want to see from a starter to be able to raise bread.  

Double Check With The Float Test

If you are like me and want to double check that your starter is ready to raise bread, you can always perform the float test. Fill a clear cup with some room temperature water. Take a little spoonful of bubbly starter and plop it in the cup. If it floats, you are ready to proceed with the recipe. If it sinks, give it a bit more time and test again in another hour. If your starter is still not floating, but it has doubled or tripled in size, it may be over-ripe. You can still use this starter, but your bread may end up with more “sour” notes. You can see a video of how to perform the float test here.

Making the Leaven

Once your starter is consistently doubling or tripling in size, you are ready to use it to mix up the leaven for the bread. I think of my sourdough starter as my “mother starter” that I constantly feed. To make any of my sourdough breads, I take some of the “mother starter” and add flour and water to it to create the amount of leaven I need to use in my bread. Technically you could directly use bubbly sourdough starter, but I find that recipes are easier to understand and come out more consistently when I use my starter in this way. To mix up the leaven, take 1 Tablespoon of sourdough starter and add to it flour and water. Cover it and let it sit 8-12 hours until it has risen and can pass the float test. Then it is ready to raise the bread.

Vital Wheat Gluten

I don’t always have bread flour on hand. To help combat this issue, I bought a large bag of vital wheat gluten (affiliate link). Vital wheat gluten is made from wheat flour and is almost pure gluten. I use this all the time in my bread recipes to increase the protein in bread, build structure and improve the elasticity and rise in my dough. A little goes a long way and I typically use about 1 teaspoon vital wheat gluten per cup of all-purpose flour, which makes a great substitute for bread flour. If you don’t have vital wheat gluten, you can substitute bread flour for the all purpose flour in this recipe and omit the vital wheat gluten.

Time and Health Benefits

As with all sourdough and natural yeast recipes, this recipe is going to take some time to rise. The cultures in your fresh yeast break down the bran of the wheat, making the bread more digestible and providing more health benefits than bread made with commercial yeast. The temperature of your kitchen will have an effect on the length of time the bread will take to rise. The recipe calls out a range of time because of those temperature factors. If you are making this sourdough french bread in the winter it may take closer to 6 hours for your loaf’s second rise (depending on the warmth of your kitchen). One of the reasons I love this recipe is that the bulk rise happens overnight, which means the starter is doing all the work while you are asleep.

A Sample Timeline: Sourdough French Bread

Day 1: Power-Feed Your Starter 2-3 times (omit this step if it’s already doubling/tripling in size regularly)

Day 2: 

  • 8-10 AM Mix the leaven. Cover and leave to rise until it has doubled in size and passes the float test.
  • 6-8 PM Mix the dough using a stand mixer. Cover and let rise overnight.

Day 3

  • 6-8 AM Shape dough, cover and let rise in a warm place until puffy and almost doubled.
  • 11-2 PM Score loaves and bake.

Baking Tips

I often place my loaves on a parchment-lined baking sheet to rise and they turn out great. If you want your loaf to turn out similar to a traditional baguette and you are planning to bake a lot of baguette style loaves, investing in one of these (affiliate link) special baguette pans is worth it in my opinion. They help give a crispy crust with the air flow around the entire baguette and produce a superior product. This is not to say you can’t get a beautiful loaf on a traditional baking sheet and if you aren’t planning to bake much baguette, I wouldn’t worry about a baguette pan. To help either type of loaf get a crispy crust, I like to throw a few ice cubes into the bottom of my preheated oven right before before baking the baguettes. The ice cubes produce steam throughout the baking process which gives a beautiful crispy crust to these sourdough baguettes. 

If you love sourdough or want an easy-to-follow recipe to use your starter with, this recipe is really a great one. The dough is mixed in a stand mixer, it rises overnight and produces a few delicious loaves of french bread. The only “tricky” part for sourdough newbies is just making sure your starter is active and able to raise a loaf of bread. I’m hoping these tips will help you feel confident to try it out! Before you know it you can be pulling out some beautiful loaves of sourdough bread to sop up some soup, enjoy with butter or just to tear apart on a a family picnic. Enjoy!

Soft Sourdough French Bread

Crispy but soft, tangy and light this sourdough french bread is made with 100% sourdough starter and is absolutely delicious.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Total Rise Time 16 hrs
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Servings 2 loaves

Ingredients
  

Leaven: 8-12 hours before mixing dough

  • 1 Tablespoon sourdough starter
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup room temperature water

Dough

  • All of the leaven or 1 1/4 cups bubbly sourdough starter
  • 2 cups room temperature water
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon salt
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 6-7 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons vital wheat gluten *see recipe notes

Instructions
 

Leaven

  • Eight to twelve hours before mixing the dough, add 1 Tablespoon of ripe sourdough starter to a small bowl.
  • Add 1 cup of flour and 3/4 cup water to the starter. Mix together and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit for 8-12 hours until it has doubled in size and passes the float test.

Mixing the Dough

  • To the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook add the bubbly leaven, water, sugar, salt, and vegetable oil.
  • Add 5.5 cups flour and the vital wheat gluten and mix. Continue adding flour until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl, the dough is tacky (but not overly sticky) and you can pinch of a piece of dough, roll it in your fingers and just have a little bit of residual dough on your fingers. Check out these tips to know if your dough is ready.
  • Knead the dough for about 8-10 minutes (set a timer and let the mixer go) and add a Tablespoon of flour at a time as needed.
  • Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 8-12 hours (overnight).
  • The next morning the dough will have risen. The amount of rise depends a lot on the temperature of your kitchen. Don't worry, if your starter is very active, it will be okay.
  • Transfer the dough to a countertop. Cut the dough in two sections for two large loaves or in three for three smaller loaves.
  • Pat the dough into a rectangle and roll up cinnamon-roll style, pinching the seams closed as you roll.
  • Repeat with the remaining sourdough loaves.
  • Place the loaves on a parchment-lined baking sheet or use a baguette bread pan. Cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Let the loaves rise for 3-6 hours until puffy and almost doubled in size (the time will depend on the warmth of your kitchen).

Baking the Bread

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Throw a handful of ice cubes into the bottom of the oven while it preheats.
  • Slash or score the loaves with a bread lame or sharp knife.
  • Bake the bread for 35 minutes until a nice golden color. Brush with melted butter and let cool completely before slicing. Enjoy!

Notes

Vital Wheat Gluten: If you don’t have vital wheat gluten (I buy mine here), you can omit it and use bread flour in place of all purpose flour. 
Keyword soft french bread, sourdough bread

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Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

Gingerbread Snack Cake with Sourdough Discard

Gingerbread has always been one of my favorite holiday flavors. As a kid living in Europe with my family, I grew up going to German Christmas markets: stalls filled with nutcrackers, handmade trinkets and intricately iced “Lebkuchen” (gingerbread). I was always intrigued by the sweet and spicy smell and the delicious flavor. This sourdough gingerbread cake evokes so many of those Christmas childhood memories and will make your whole house smell like Christmas. It is a soft and tender crumb, jam-packed with gingerbread/molasses flavor and uses up a bunch of sourdough discard. My kids especially love this sourdough gingerbread snack cake and always ask for extra whipped cream. It takes me back to my childhood Christmas memories and is the perfect snack cake to eat all winter long.

Sourdough Discard in Gingerbread Cake

A word of warning: not all sourdough discard is created equal, age makes a difference. The discard that has been sitting in my fridge for a week or two gives a lot more “tang” to this cake. For some recipes you will want to taste that sourdough flavor. For this recipe, I prefer to use sourdough discard that is only a day or two old, so it cuts down on the tang. My family didn’t even know there was sourdough in this recipe. You can also use bubbly sourdough starter if you want in this gingerbread snack cake and it should work well. If you want to taste the tangy sourdough along with the gingerbread spices, go ahead and use up that 2 week old discard from your fridge. It will still taste delicious.

Can I Use Blackstrap Molasses?

Molasses is made out of sugar cane, and it is categorized depending on how many times the sugar cane syrup has been boiled and then extracted. The first boiling/extracting is light molasses. Second boiling/extracting is dark molasses and third boiling/extracting produces Blackstrap molasses (affiliate link). It is the most concentrated molasses and has a bittersweet flavor on its own. Typically you will find the “light” molasses in a regular grocery store. Health food stores and some grocery stores will often carry blackstrap molasses due to the concentrated nutrients found in it. In this cake, I love the flavor the blackstrap molasses brings when combined with the sugars. It gives a depth of delicious molasses flavor that pairs so nicely with the spices. If you don’t have blackstrap molasses on hand, you can substitute it for regular molasses (it just might not have as “punchy” of a flavor).

A Few Gingerbread Snack Cake Tips:

  1. The first step in making this gingerbread snack cake is to mix very hot (nearly boiling) water with the molasses. This helps break down the sugars in the molasses and lets it fully incorporate into the cake batter. 
  2. I use one bowl for this gingerbread snack cake. I add my spices directly to the center of the bowl and mix them in before adding in the sourdough discard and flour. I like to go with “less cleanup”, and with four kids, we always have a lot of dishes. You can find some of my other favorite one-bowl recipes: here, here and here.
  3. I like to bake this cake at 400 degrees for the first ten minutes and then reduce the temperature and continue the bake. This hot temperature activates the baking powder in the cake, giving it a beautiful domed top. 

Deep Gingerbread/Molasses Flavor

If you really want the deep gingerbread flavor, this cake needs to cool completely before serving. As the cake cools, the flavors bloom and turn into the perfect mix of molasses/gingerbread heaven. If I am making this cake for my family, we will often snack on a piece fresh out of the oven…and then wait for it to cool and have another slice. We like to top it with whipped cream (fresh is best, but we don’t always have heavy whipping cream on hand), and it is just delicious. I hope you enjoy it too!

Gingerbread Snack Cake with Sourdough Discard

A soft and tender crumb, jam packed with gingerbread/molasses flavor and uses up a bunch of sourdough discard: the perfect Christmas snack cake.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 1 cake

Ingredients
  

  • 1/3 cup very hot water
  • 1/3 cup blackstrap molasses can substitute regular molasses
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar can also use dark brown
  • 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil any neutral flavored oil works
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup sourdough discard see note
  • 1 cup all purpose flour

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lightly coat an 8 by 8 pan with cooking spray or a parchment sling.
  • To a liquid measuring cup, add 1/3 cup water. Microwave it until very hot or almost boiling. You can also do this on the stovetop. Add the molasses to the hot water and mix together. Set aside.
  • To a medium-sized bowl, add brown sugar, granulated sugar and oil. Mix together with a wooden spoon. Add the egg and mix.
  • Add the molasses/water mixture, mixing as your pour it in (this helps temper the egg if the molasses mixture is still very hot). Continue mixing until completely incorporated.
  • Add the salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and cloves directly to the middle of the bowl and mix together, taking care not to splash any of it out of the bowl.
  • Add the greek yogurt and sourdough discard. Mix together. Then add the flour and mix until just combined.
  • Pour the mixture into your greased pan and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 30-40 minutes until the center is no longer jiggly and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool before serving. This gingerbread snack cake deepens in flavor as it cools. Serve with a sprinkling of powdered sugar or fresh whipped cream. Enjoy!

Notes

Not all sourdough discard is created equal. For best results, use discard that is only a few days old at the most. You can also substitute ripe, bubbly sourdough starter for the discard in this recipe.
Keyword gingerbread, sourdough

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Disclaimer: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a very small amount from qualifying purchases.

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas. Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake.

The Best Zucchini Bread with Sourdough Discard

I had big dreams this year of planting a large beautiful garden and watching it grow all summer long. This did not happen. My big beautiful garden did not grow very well this summer (thank you bunnies, weird weather and a somewhat last-minute long-distance road trip that kept me from tending to the garden much throughout the summer). I was hoping for big, beautiful zucchini to sauté as a side to any meal, turn into our favorite zucchini boats or make many loaves of this amazing zucchini bread. This zucchini bread is light, tender, fluffy and uses up some of the sourdough discard that I always seem to have lurking in the back of my fridge. Lucky for me, my local farmers market and grocery store carry lots of zucchini this time of year.

Sourdough Discard in Zucchini Bread

If you have zucchini coming out your ears and sourdough discard taking over your fridge, this recipe is for you! I love using sourdough discard in recipes, not only for the little tang it gives but also because I’m not a fan of wasting food. This recipe uses ½ cup of sourdough discard directly from your fridge (you can also use bubbly sourdough starter) and it enhances the flavor of this delicious zucchini bread. If you don’t have sourdough starter, don’t worry. You can still make an awesome loaf of zucchini bread: Omit the sourdough starter. Add 2 cups of flour instead of 1 2/3 cups and 1/4 cup of milk to the batter. That’s it. I made both recipes side by side (pictured above) and both were delicious. You don’t need sourdough starter to make this delicious loaf, but if you have it on hand, it is the perfect way to use up some of your sourdough discard.

Wring Out the Zucchini 

Did you know that 1 cup of chopped zucchini is made up of 90% water? Because of this high water content, it’s important to wring out the zucchini a bit before adding it to the recipe. The pictures below show the easy way I do this. Take a box grater, shred the zucchini and then use a paper towel to wring the zucchini. I give it about three squeezes over my sink and call it good. This little extra step will help your zucchini bread to turn out perfectly moist and delicious.

Baking Temperature and Time

One of the tricks I’ve learned over the years I’ve been baking is to bake quickbread, like zucchini bread, at a high temperature for the first 10 minutes and then reduce the temperature to finish the longer bake time. The high heat helps activate the baking powder giving a nice lift and rounded dome shape to your loaf of zucchini bread. This zucchini bread takes about an hour to bake. I like to stick a knife or toothpick in the center to see if it’s completely baked all the way through. Depending on the temperature of your oven it may need more or less time.

Quick Mix. Long Bake. Delicious Zucchini Bread

Whatever way you slice it, this zucchini bread is delicious. It is tender, moist and perfect to gift this time of year. It is my kids’ favorite way to eat zucchini. They do eat other preparations of zucchini, though maybe not as willingly. If I only had to make one zucchini bread recipe for the rest of my life, this would be the one. It is that good! I hope you enjoy it too.