Amish White Friendship Bread

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If you are looking for a new way to use your Amish friendship bread starter, try this easy, white bread that is perfect for sandwiches and savory meals. No additional sugar added!

For at least a year now, many have asked for new ways to use up your friendship bread starter. The most commonly requested recipe? A simple white bread. Not sweet like a dessert, but one that you could slice and serve as a sandwich.

When yeast started becoming scarce a few weeks ago, I pulled a friendship bread starter out of the freezer that had been in there a year. Yes a year. I added ½ cup each of flour, milk and sugar and got the whole sourdough process started again. This classic homemade white bread was the first recipe I tested. And Maddie called it “super addicting“. That’s what we want! 🙂

loaf of white bread with butter

What exactly is Amish friendship bread starter?

You’ll notice that this recipe calls for ½ cup of Amish Friendship Bread Starter. Click here to find that recipe. It is a sweet sourdough (sometimes called Herman sourdough) made from milk, flour and sugar. It’s a 10 day process, but it is super easy. It’s called friendship bread because after the 10 days, you divide the starter into a few bags to give to friends. That way they can enjoy the amazing breads this starter makes!

Important Note: Plan Ahead!

This sourdough bread is a little different than traditional artisan sourdough. It takes a little longer to rise a loaf of bread. Because of that, you’ll want to plan 48 hours to make this bread. Don’t worry…that’s not 48 hours of hands on time. In fact, there is hardly any hands on time at all. Most of the 48 hours is rise time.

Ingredients for Sandwich Friendship Bread

You’ll need just 5 ingredients to make this bread:

  • friendship sourdough starter
  • oil. We use vegetable oil, but others would work too.
  • water (The water should be warm. About 100º Fahrenheit should work.)
  • salt
  • flour. Unbleached flour generally works best with sourdough. And bread flour will give the bread better structure, but all-purpose will work too.
sourdough starter in a glass bowl on a scale

How to Make Friendship Bread

This recipe starts with the Amish friendship bread starter. We have not tested it with traditional sourdough starter (the kind without sugar). Most likely it would work, but know that we have not yet tested it.

Pro Tip: Sourdough recipes work best if you weigh each ingredient based on grams. A kitchen scale works best for this. This is the kitchen scale we have and love.

Mix the dough.

  • Take a glass bowl and whisk together the starter, oil, salt and warm water.
wet ingredients for sourdough bread in a bowl with a whisk
  • Then add in the flour and mix until it becomes a shaggy dough.
  • Allow the dough to sit for just 30 minutes.
  • Pick the dough ball up and form a ball with the dough.
  • Then spray a clean bowl with cooking spray. Place the dough ball in the glass bowl and cover loosely with a piece of plastic wrap.
friendship bread dough not risen

Let Rise.

Allow the dough to rise for about 24 hours room temperature. How fast the dough rises will depend on the temperature of your house. If your house is cold (which ours often is!), place the bowl in the oven and turn on the oven light. Make sure the bowl is not touching or very close to the oven light. Close the oven and allow the warmth of the light bulb to help the bread rise.

This trick helps our dough when we feel it is having trouble rising, but remember that the dough is in there. We’ve forgotten the dough was in there and turned the oven on only to ruin our rising bread!

friendship bread dough in a bowl after 24 hours

Quick Knead.

After about 24 hours, the dough should be slightly risen. Pick the dough ball up and knead it about 10 times. It should feel tacky, but not too sticky. This takes less than a minute. No need to knead the dough for minutes on end!

hand kneading bread dough

Let Rise.

Spray a 9×5″ loaf pan with cooking spray (or coat it with oil). Form the dough into an oval “loaf” shape and place it in the prepared pan. Cover it again with plastic wrap and let it rise another 24 hours.

bread dough in a 9x5 baking pan

We found the second rise took less time than the first rise. After about 14 hours our dough looked like this:

risen bread dough in a loaf pan

We let it sit another 6 hours or so and it didn’t really rise anymore. Plan 24 hours for each rise though, and be pleasantly surprised if it takes less time!


When your dough has risen to fill the pan, it is time to bake! Preheat the oven to 325º Fahrenheit. Bake for about 35-40 minutes or until the bread is golden brown. If you think it is browning too quickly, cover it loosely with foil and continue to bake.

golden brown white bread in a loaf pan wrapped in a towel

What is this bread good for?

This bread is excellent for slicing and serving with just butter. Or top with honey or your favorite homemade jam. It’s also good for:

Basically anything you use regular white bread for!

white friendship bread on a plate with two slices cut

Other Recipes to Use Friendship Bread Starter

slices of Amish White Friendship Bread with butter
slices of Amish White Friendship Bread with butter

White Amish Friendship Bread

4.61 from 33 votes
If you are looking for a new way to use your Amish friendship bread starter, try this easy, white bread that is perfect for sandwiches and savory meals. No additional sugar added!
Servings 10
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Rise Time 2 days

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  • This recipe works best if you weight out the ingredients. We highly recommend a kitchen scale.
  • In a medium size bowl, use a whisk to mix together the starter, oil, salt, and water.
  • Add the flour. Use a rubber spatula to mix the ingredients together until the flour is absorbed and a stiff dough forms.
  • Allow the dough to rest for 30 minutes.
  • Using your hands, form a dough ball.
  • Spray a large glass bowl with cooking spray. Place the dough in the bowl, then cover with plastic wrap. Leave the dough overnight at room temperature.
  • At about the same time the next day, check the dough. It should be slightly risen. Remove the dough from the bowl and knead about 10 times to form a smooth ball.
  • Grease a 9×5 loaf pan with oil or cooking spray. Form a small, smooth loaf with the dough and place it in the pan.
  • Cover the pan loosely with plastic wrap and allow it to sit again at room temperature overnight.
  • You should find the next day that the dough has risen nicely to fill the pan.
  • Preheat the oven to 325º Fahrenheit and bake for about 35-40 minutes. If the top is getting too brown, cover loosely with a piece of foil so it doesn't get any more brown.
  • Allow the bread to cool for 5-10 minutes. Loosen the edges of the bread with a knife and remove it from the pan to cool on a wire rack.
  • Store in an airtight container.


The calories shown are based on the bread being cut into 10 pieces, with 1 serving being 1 slice of bread. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information.**


Calories: 195kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Sodium: 117mg | Potassium: 40mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 2mg
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Calories 195
Keyword bake sale, comfort food

Recipe slightly adapted from Friendship Bread Kitchen

About JulieJulie Clark

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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4.61 from 33 votes (25 ratings without comment)
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5 months ago

4 stars
I made this for the first time today. It turned out really dense and I followed the recipe exactly as written. Not sure what happened. Any ideas as to what I could have done wrong?

1 year ago

After mixing in the flour my dough looks too thick and dry. I have tried it twice the second time adding the flour a little at a time. I did not use all of the flour the second time and my dough looks the same again. Help?!

1 year ago

The first time I tried this white bread it was wonderful. The last two times it has not risen at all. I’ve let it rise for longer than the recipe says, put it in a warm, moist place, but still no rise. My starter looks fine, so I don’t think it is that. I’m not sure what has happened or if I can salvage it or not.

1 year ago

Can the Amish White Bread be frozen for future use (if there is any left over)? And, if so, would it be any good (soggy, dry, etc)?

2 years ago

Amazing recipe. Too fun to have something else yo do with amish cinnamon bread starter.
Im going to try to season a little in the last rise session see how it goes!

3 years ago

5 stars
I love this recipe because of the simplicity! 🙂 I’ve tried it for the first time today and it turned out good… Enjoying the moist texture! 😀 I have a question – may I add walnuts to this recipe?

3 years ago

Can monk fruit be used instead of sugar?

3 years ago

If your starter doesn’t seem to be rising a lot can you add more yeast to the bag?

Holly Douglas
3 years ago

I put my dough in the oven with the light on for 24 hours and now it’s just a big sticky mess. It’s not a dough ball at all. Is it salvageable?

Lee Kearns
3 years ago

The recipe reads 3 cups/450g flour. AP flour weighs between 120-130g in conversion charts. Can you clarify these measurements?

3 years ago

you mention putting dough in oven with light on if it hasn’t risen enough. How long should you do this for?

Catherine Nelson
3 years ago

What day should your starter be on when making this recipe? Does it rise better if the dough is mixed on a certain day in the 10 day starter process?

Heidi Knowlton
3 years ago

5 stars
Great recipe! I love that it uses only the starter to make it rise and no additional yeast. My starter was very active so each rise took about 10 hours. Delicious bread! This is a keeper.

Gabrielle Pritt
3 years ago

2nd comment! Doubling the recipe has worked out fine! Just make sure you use a large glass bowl. I’m at the 2nd rising stage now. Just split my dough in half and put them each into a greased bread pan.

Gabrielle Pritt
3 years ago

I doubled the recipe, couldn’t use a rubber spatula to make sure all flour was mixed in so I used my hands. I hope that doesn’t mess it up. It’s doing it’s first 30 minute rest right now. I’ll be sure to update as the process goes along to let people know if doubling in one bowl is a good idea or not. So excited to try this! Thanks for the recipe!