What to cook with Sourdough discard

May 27, 2021


Each time you feed your sourdough starter you need to discard half. So what do you do with it? Ideally you cook with it rather than throwing it to the chickens (who love it by the way) or putting it in the bin.

If you are like me and don' use it all that often it can be hard to come up with recipes for the discard because there are only so many baked goods you can consume in a week. 

My favourite things to make are Sourdough cinnamon scrolls, a sourdough loaf or sourdough English muffins. With the small amount of discard I get before feeding it can be a challenge to think of something to make. 


Discard is what you remove before feeding your starter. This halves the amount of starter you have and means you don't need to feed it as much flour and water and it also doesn't burst out of the jar you are keeping it in. For a small user such as myself this is usually no more than about a cup of starter. 


Active discard means it has been fed in the last 12hrs usually. It can vary recipe to recipe but it will generally say how active it needs to be. You should remove your starter from the fridge for 3hrs before feeding then leave it out for 8hrs before returning to the fridge. If returning it to the fridge then leave out for 8hrs and collect the discard then feed and leave for another 8hrs before returning to the fridge.


 If your recipe calls for more starter than you have then skip the discard step before feeding and double the feed. Son if you start with 200g starter then 200g flour and 200g water, rather than discarding down to 100g before feeding. This will double your starter giving you more to cook with. If you accidently use it all up then just reserve some of the dough after rising and feed as you usually would. As the starter is in there it should still be active in the dough. Its not ideal but it will get the job done.


My go to discard recipes are crumpets and pizza bases. 

Both are super easy and require almost nothing added to cook with besides the discard. 

Sourdough Discard Pizza Bases

Scoop out half of your starter (or about 1 cup) and use it to line a hot pan like a giant pancake. It will puff up a little so don't worry if it looks a little thin. Drizzle oil, herbs and toppings on top and slide the pan into an oven on about 180C (if your pan isn't oven safe then slide the pizza onto a tray first). Cook for about 5-10mins to melt your toppings.

Done! Amazing right?

Sourdough Discard Crumpets 

You will need:
Sourdough discard
Bicarb soda

Add 1/2 cup discard to a bowl and stir in 1tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp bicarb soda. Use it straight away and fill two greased crumpet rings about half way. Keep the pan on low as this is what makes them rise and bubble like a good crumpet should.

Cook them until the top goes dull and most of the bubbles have appeared. For a more holey texture you can pop the bubbles. Remove the rings and gently flip the crumpets, cooking a few seconds longer to get a golden top.

Slather these in butter and any honey or jam. They taste absolutely amazing hot straight from the pan.

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