Sourdough Rye Recipe -
Sourdough Rye Recipe
  • READY IN 16+ hrs

Sourdough Rye

Recipe by  

"This bread takes a bit of time, but your effort is repaid with two chewy, flavorful loaves."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 2 loaves Change Servings
  • PREP

    30 mins
  • COOK

    40 mins

    16 hrs 40 mins


  1. The night before you want to bake the bread, feed the starter with 1 cup rye flour, 1/2 cup bread flour, and 2/3 cup water. Cover, and let stand at room temperature overnight.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together expanded starter, 1/4 cup water, salt, sugar, oil, seeds, and 1 cup each rye and bread flour. Add more or less flour as necessary to get a soft dough.
  3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until satiny. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn once to oil the surface. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise in a warm spot until doubled.
  4. Punch down dough, and shape into loaves. Place on a greased baking sheet. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40 minutes, or until it sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom.
  6. Alternate baking method for chewier, salty crust: Bake 20 minutes at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup water and 1 teaspoon salt. Remove loaves from oven and brush crust with salt water. Continue baking for 25 minutes more, brushing at 10 minute intervals.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Jan 26, 2004

Since I've been given a sourdough starter, I've been making sourdoughs like crazy so the starter doesn't take over my fridge. This is the best of the whole wheat ones I've tried. It rose nicely, but that probably has something to do with me kneading the heck out of it and also me being patient with the dough. I read James Beard's advice about sourdough rye, and he says to let it rise for 2-3 hours on each rise. I didn't let this loaf go that long, but pretty close. Anyway, I recommend this one to folks who like rye bread.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Jul 19, 2007

Question-Are you supposed to add the first ingredients to 1 cup of starter or are you supposed to add the ingredients to your starter and then use 1 cup of it? I did the latter, and the bread turned out okay, but it only made one small loaf.

Jul 20, 2003

I've been making this bread for over a year. It's AWSOME! Dense, rich, heavy, and SOUR :-) when done correctly. It's gooey and sticky to knead when first mixed together but well worth all the trouble. I use a GoldRush brand sourdough starter for this which has been working for over two years. Give this a try! You won't be disappointed!

Jul 14, 2005

really good! I have a 33 year old starter,so I have been using sourdough for quite a number of years.I only made a couple changes.. one, I added one package of yeast to the 1/4 cup water, and I just added the first ingredients to my starter and let it sit for an hour or so, cause I didn't know I was gona make this.I did use someones suggestion that onion be added, so I used dry chopped onion in the bread and sprinkled some on the baking pan. I did an egg wash,( one whole egg with a tsp. of water, mixed) and brushed it on the bread before baking, then added a sprinkling of caraway seed. It was really good.Its a real keeper! I made one big fat loaf instead of two.

Aug 25, 2010

Really, really yummy! I followed the directions exactly, and used Sourdough Starter II on this site. I got a really nice crust by placing a pan on the bottom of the oven and filling it with boiling water to create steam... left it in for about 10 minutes, then dumped the water. Delicious crust and a soft, chewy bread. Thanks for the recipe!!

Apr 09, 2012

I'm frustrated with the way this recipe is written. It may work wonderfully for an experienced sourdough baker, but to someone new to the process it's not helpful at all. I tried this as the first bread with my new rye starter and, after a complete failure (well, not complete - I turned it into some lovely sourdough rye crackers) I dove in and did more research on sourdough baking. I realize now that what the recipe author intends is for the baker to make a sourdough "sponge" the night before baking. It's too bad the recipe never mentions that word, or I'd have looked into what a sponge was sooner. As directed, I fed my starter the night before but I fed my *whole* starter, not simply taking out a cup then and making a sponge. The steps for doing this are completely unclear for anyone who is unfamiliar with the ins and outs of sourdough breads and really ought to be clarified. NOW, I have a sponge sitting on my counter and will try again the proper way tomorrow. Lesson learned.

Feb 06, 2009

This is a delicious recipe. I was nervous that it doesn't call for any yeast. I almost went ahead and put a teaspoon in, since my sourdough starter is not very mature, but I decided to stick to the rule, for once: make the recipe as-is the first time around. And it turned out great! I did change one thing: I fed the starter with rye flour 24 hours before I started the bread, not just the night before. I make all bread in my food processor, so I just put the starter and the additional flour in my processor, pulsed it a few times until it was mixed, then left it 24 hours. This morning I mixed up the bread, and left it 3 or 4 hours for the initial rise, then 4 or 5 hours for the second rise. I think this was necessary because my sourdough starter is immature. Thanks! Great recipe!

Jan 20, 2008

This was easy to follow and delivered 2 great little loaves of bread. I did vary the recipe a bit. I changed the final cup of bread flour to 1/2 cup of bread flour and 1/2 cup of corn meal. It was a hit at dinner with friends. Nice dense, flavorful, slightly sweet rye. I gave the recipe and starter out as take homes.


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  • Calories
  • 85 kcal
  • 4%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 16.6 g
  • 5%
  • Cholesterol
  • < 1 mg
  • < 1%
  • Fat
  • 0.9 g
  • 1%
  • Fiber
  • 1.8 g
  • 7%
  • Protein
  • 2.5 g
  • 5%
  • Sodium
  • 245 mg
  • 10%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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