If you’re a sourdough bread baker, you’re probably familiar with the daily ritual of feeding your starter. But what do you do with the leftover discard when you don’t want to waste it? Thankfully, there are many delicious ways to use up your extra starter in both sweet and savoury sourdough recipes. From pancakes and waffles to crackers and pizza dough, the possibilities are endless. In this post, we’ll share some of our favourite sourdough discard recipes that will help you make the most of your sourdough journey while minimizing food waste.
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What is Sourdough Discard?
Sourdough discard is the portion of your starter that’s removed before the feeding process. This practice ensures the starter doesn’t become too large and maintains a balanced yeast and bacteria population. Essentially, it’s the unfed part of the starter that has lower wild yeast activity but can still be used in various sweet and savoury sourodugh recipes, reducing waste and adding a tangy flavour to baked goods.
Basic Pastry Recipes
If you have excess sourdough starter, a great way to use it is to make basic pastry recipes, like shortcrust or puff pastry to use in a variety of sweet and savoury dishes. Unfed sourdough starter is an inactive starter and does not have strong yeast colonies to make the pastry rise, but adds a delicious tang to your pastry!
If you’re a fan of homemade tarts and pies, why not take your pastry-making to the next level with Sourdough Puff Pastry? This recipe yields a delightfully flaky and buttery pastry that’s just as golden brown and delicious as traditional puff pastry. But what sets it apart is the addition of sourdough starter discard, which infuses the pastry with a distinctive and irresistible tang. Our Sourdough Puff Pastry recipe is versatile enough to be used in both sweet and savoury dishes, so you can let your imagination run wild with all the delicious possibilities.
Sourdough discard is a wonderful ingredient to add to shortcrust pastry. Not only does it make the dough more pliable and easy to handle, but it also imparts a distinctive tang that only sourdough can offer. If you’re planning on baking sweet treats like homemade tarts, mince pies, or other delicious desserts for your family this weekend, consider incorporating this simple yet flaky and buttery Sourdough Shortcrust Pastry recipe into one of your bakes. This is a great recipe to use to make sourdough pie crust, tart or tartlet cases or top your pie. All you will need are all-purpose flour, cold butter and sourdough discard!
Love making pies? This Sourdough Discard Pie Crust recipe may not use much discard starter, but the little amount goes a long way to ensure the flakiest, melt-in-the-mouth pie crust, you’ll ever take! What is more, you make make it sweet or savoury, by including or omitting sugar!
Sweet Sourdough Starter Discard Recipes
Whether you are looking to make a delicious dessert to enjoy after dinner, a sweet treat to take on a picnic or a hike or make an easy breakfast, we have you covered. Extra sourdough starter can be added to a bunch of sweet bakes, like sourdough sugar cookies, sourdough brownies, sourdough biscuits and even chocolate cake or sourdough banana bread with chocolate chips! Alternatively, make a delicious breakfast, like sourdough discard waffles or pancakes.
Have a look at the delicious recipes below and put your excess starter to good use.
Looking for a delicious way to use up your never-ending supply of sourdough discard? Look no further than these easy and fluffy sourdough discard pancakes! For the best results, make the batter the night before and let it ferment overnight, which not only makes the pancakes easier to digest but also gives them a light and airy texture from the extra rise. Come morning, all you have to do is give the batter a quick stir and cook up a batch of these delectable pancakes to enjoy with your favourite toppings. It’s the perfect lazy Sunday morning treat!
When it comes to crunchy, twice-baked cookies with nuts, there’s no better way to enjoy them than with a cup of coffee, tea, or dessert wine. Known as biscotti or cantucci in Italy, croquet in France, and mandelbrot in Germany, these beloved treats are enjoyed all over Europe. At our house, we love making Chocolate Sourdough Biscotti with Hazelnuts and Cocoa Powder. These crispy delights are perfect for dunking in a steaming cup of black coffee or enjoying as an after-dinner treat. So why not give them a try and discover the best way to savour the flavours of Europe right at home?
Take inspiration from the classic Lemon Drizzle Cake and whip up a batch of Easy Sourdough Lemon Muffins for a quick and tasty way to use up your sourdough discard. With their tangy flavour and fluffy texture, these muffins are the perfect treat for a sweet breakfast bite or a midday snack at work. And if you’re feeling fancy, you can even transform them into decadent cupcakes. Keep reading to discover how to make these irresistible treats!
When it comes to beloved British Christmas traditions, nothing quite compares to the humble mince pie. These sweet and boozy treats, with their flaky buttery shortcrust and rich mincemeat filling, are guaranteed to warm your heart and soul and transport you to the festive season. But why not add a new twist to this classic dessert by trying our Pear Mince Pies with Sourdough Pastry? These delectable pies feature a delightful combination of juicy pears and traditional mincemeat, all encased in a deliciously flaky sourdough pastry. Trust us, it’s a new Christmas tradition that you won’t want to miss!
Don’t let the unusual name fool you – these “squashed fly biscuits” are a deliciously crunchy and satisfying treat that happen to be completely refined sugar-free. Made with a generous helping of sourdough discard, our Sourdough Garibaldi Biscuits are lightly sweetened with maple syrup and feature a delightful hint of tang that perfectly complements the tart currants. Whether you enjoy them as a quick snack or as a delightful accompaniment to your favourite cup of tea, these biscuits are sure to become a regular in your baking rotation.
We absolutely adore our Christmas treats to be thick and soft, and that’s exactly how we love our Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies! These cookies are bursting with the warmth of aromatic spices and the richness of treacly brown sugar. Baking these cookies is not only a delicious endeavour, but also a truly fun activity that’s perfect for the holiday season.
Looking to switch up your classic lemon drizzle cake recipe? Why not try our twist on the British family favourite with a double dose of tangy citrus flavour in our Sourdough Lime Drizzle Cake! This zesty cake not only packs a punch of lime flavour but also makes great use of your sourdough discard for a deliciously tangy and moist texture.
Looking for the perfect afternoon tea treat? Look no further than our Lemon & Blueberry Sourdough Scones! These light and fluffy scones have just the right amount of sourdough tang and are loaded with juicy blueberries and fresh lemon zest for a burst of flavour in every bite. Soft and buttery, they’re best served with a generous smear of butter and a steaming cup of tea. But be warned, these delicious scones won’t last long!
Try incorporating some discarded sourdough starter into your banana bread! It makes the bread softer, and more flavoursome and it stays fresher for longer!
Savoury Sourdough Discard Recipes
If you don’t have that much of a sweet tooth, no problem! Leftover sourdough starter can be used in different ways to make savory recipes: snacks, quick breads (like sourdough discard focaccia) and delicious sourdough crackers to add to your cheese and charcuterie boards. Here are some of our favorite things to make:
Making Yorkshire Puddings is a great way to make use of your sourdough starter! No Sunday roast is complete without a puffy Yorkshire Pudding that soaks up all the delicious gravy. Our recipe for Sourdough Yorkshire Pudding is incredibly simple, and they puff up beautifully, turning golden brown and crispy in the oven. An easy recipe that uses either an active starter or extra sourdough discard that you may have.
These Fruit & Seed Sourdough Crackers are a perfect addition to any cheeseboard. With a crunchy texture and loaded with seeds and chewy dried fruits, these crackers are both simple and sophisticated. The best part? You can make them with leftover sourdough discard and whatever dried fruits you have on hand. Try this easy recipe to elevate your next cheese platter.
Use up a good portion of sourdough starter by making these delicious herby crackers. These moreish sourdough crackers have a satisfying snap, and are salty, herby, and slightly sour. Perfect as a snack to take to work instead of crisps, these Sourdough Starter Discard Crackers are also a great addition to any cheeseboard!
One of our favorite sourdough discard recipes – Discard Focaccia with Olives and Herbs! Made with bread four, a generous portion of the starter discard and olive oil, this Italian bread is one of the most exciting and one of the easiest ways to use up 225g of discard!
Transform your sourdough discard into irresistible Sourdough Cheese Crackers and never waste any of it again! Packed with sharp mature Cheddar cheese and a tangy sourdough flavour, these crispy and crunchy crackers make the perfect snack for work or a delicious addition to any party platter when paired with hummus and other dips.
Try making Sourdough Grissini to avoid wasting sourdough discard! These breadsticks are flavoured with a touch of honey, generously studded with seeds, and have a satisfying snap. They make a perfect mid-afternoon snack or can be paired with crudités as a scooper for hummus and other dips.
Hope you found a bunch of sweet and savoury sourodugh discard recipes to add to your repertoire!
Looking For Active Sourdough Starter Recipes?
Head straight to our compilation of amazing recipes using bubbly and active starter to make soft pretzels, naan bread, focaccia, sourdough pizza crust and delicious French pastries, like pain au chocolat or croissants. In these recipes, the wild yeast acts as a leavening agent and makes the dough rise.
Have you made any of these savoury or sweet sourdough recipes? Let us know in the comments below or share your bakes on social media and tag #somebodyfeedseb.
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Christmas Sourdough ebook
Celebrate the holiday season with a unique twist this year with our 24 Christmas Sourdough recipes! Discover the magic of using active sourdough starter, sourdough discard, and leftover baked sourdough bread to create a memorable and flavoursome Christmas feast.