Shape & Bake: Easy Sourdough Loaf Recipe for Beginners


Welcome to Shana’s Sourdough, where we make sourdough baking easy and enjoyable for beginners! In this recipe, we’ll guide you through the process of creating your first sourdough loaf using our master recipe. Whether you’re new to sourdough or looking to refine your skills, this recipe is perfect for you. Let’s get started!

Before diving into the written instructions, check out our accompanying video above for a visual guide to each step of the process.


  • 350g water
  • 50-100g sourdough starter
  • 500g flour
  • 7-10g salt


  1. Mixing the Dough:

    • In a large bowl, pour in 350g of water.
    • Spoon 50-100g of sourdough starter into the bowl and mix with water.
    • Add 500g of flour and 7-10g of salt to the bowl.
    • Mix the dough with your hand until it reaches an even consistency. Use a scraper to clean off any remaining dough from your hands.
    • Cover the bowl and set a timer for 1 hour.
  2. Feeding Your Starter:

    • If needed, take this time to feed your sourdough starter. In your starter jar, add 30g of water and 30g of flour. Mix well and wipe down the sides of the jar with a wet paper towel. Cover and let it rise for 4-6 hours, or until it has finished rising. Store in the refrigerator until next use.
  3. Stretch and Folds:

    • After the initial hour, perform the first set of 25 stretch and folds on the dough. Cover and set a timer for 30 minutes.
    • Repeat the process with a second set of 8 stretch and folds after 30 minutes.
    • Then, perform the final set of 8 stretch and folds after another 30 minutes.
  4. Bulk Fermentation:

    • Let the dough rise during its bulk fermentation, which typically takes around 8 hours. You can leave it overnight or while you go about your day.
  5. Shaping and Baking:

    • Once the bulk fermentation is complete and the dough has risen to the top line of the bowl, it’s time to shape and bake.
    • Shape the dough into a general oval shape and place it into a loaf tin.
    • If you have a roaster, place the loaf tin inside it. Otherwise, you can bake the bread directly in the tin.
    • Optionally, add a handful of ice cubes into the roaster for an extra crispy crust.
    • Cover the roaster with its lid and place it into the oven at 450°F for 55 minutes. If not using a roaster, tent the bread with foil 30 minutes into baking to prevent burning.

Congratulations, you’ve just made your first sourdough loaf using the Master Recipe and the Shape & Bake technique! Remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t worry if your shaping technique isn’t perfect the first time. Enjoy your delicious homemade sourdough bread and stay tuned for more recipes and tips from Shana’s Sourdough. Happy baking!

1 comment

Why does it say 50-100g of starter? Not sure how much to add. TY

Jeannette Johnson

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