If you’re a regular sourdough baker, you’re familiar with the process of feeding your starter — and dealing with the discard. But rather than just disposing of it, there are plenty of ways to bake with sourdough discard instead. You’d be surprised at the number of bread recipes that call for discard (no feeding required!), but also the amount of unexpected bakes you can make, like crumb cake and English muffins. Here, we share our 15 best sourdough discard recipes.

1) Pain de Campagne (Country Bread) 

Ideal for the low-maintenance sourdough baker, this loaf works on your schedule. It’s made with unfed (discard) starter, which means you don’t have to plan your days around when to feed your starter and ensure it’s ripe in time to mix. (Though, if you are using discard, we do recommend using a healthy starter that’s been fed within a week.) Helpfully, the proofing times are also long and flexible, so you don’t need to be handcuffed to your kitchen throughout the recipe.

Get the recipe: Pain de Campagne (Country Bread) 

Shop the recipe: Artisan Bread Baking Crock and Dutch Oven

Easiest Sourdough Discard Crackers Photography by Rick Holbrook; Food Styling by Kaitlin Wayne
These sourdough crackers are supremely snackable. 

2) Easiest Sourdough Discard Crackers 

Is there anything easier than a recipe that instructs you to dump, stir, then pour? There’s no rolling pin (or mess to clean up) in this seamless recipe, which takes just five minutes of prep time. Use a base of sourdough discard, melted butter, and salt as a foundation, then make these crackers your own with your favorite seasonings and toppings — za’atar and Pizza Seasoning are merely a starting point for these crunchy, flaky crackers.

Get the recipe: Easiest Sourdough Discard Crackers 

Shop the recipe: Za’atar and Pizza Seasoning

Quick Sourdough Herb and Scallion Pancakes Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
If you have a ton of starter to get rid of, this is the recipe for you

3) Quick Sourdough Herb and Scallion Pancakes 

These light, crispy pancakes are the perfect clean-out-the-fridge recipe. They’re made mostly of starter and a handful of whatever herbs you find in your crisper drawer. Plus, you can whip them up in about 10 minutes for a speedy weeknight dinner.

Get the recipe: Quick Sourdough Herb and Scallion Pancakes 

Shop the recipe: Field No.8 Skillet

Sourdough Popovers Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
A welcome addition to every brunch table. 

4) Sourdough Popovers 

Sourdough discard is an unexpected addition to a breakfast treat that’s light, airy, and custardy. These five-ingredient popovers maintain that crisp exterior and soft interior, with the addition of sourdough's signature tang. 

Get the recipe: Sourdough Popovers 

Shop the recipe: Popover Pan

Sourdough Pizza Crust Photography by Kristin Teig; food styling by Liz Neily
Leveling up your pizza crust has never been easier. 

5) Sourdough Pizza Crust 

The biggest flavor enhancement to your pizza crust? Sourdough! A smidge of instant yeast is added to give your dough a bit of insurance, but the nuanced, tangy flavor of sourdough will truly up your homemade pizza game.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Pizza Crust 

Shop the recipe: Pizza Pan

Classic Sourdough Pancakes or Waffles Photography by Rick Holbrook; food styling by Kaitlin Wayne
Why choose between waffles and pancakes when you can have both?

6) Classic Sourdough Waffles or Pancakes 

Breakfast classics like waffles and pancakes are one of our favorite ways to use sourdough discard. An overnight sponge adds a richer, more nuanced flavor than just the assertive tang typically associated with sourdough. Whether you choose waffles or pancakes, a light, airy interior is guaranteed. If you’re looking for a go-to sourdough pancake or waffle recipe, this is it.

Get the recipe: Classic Sourdough Waffles or Pancakes 

Shop the recipe: Cuisinart Double Sided Belgian Waffle Maker

Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookie Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
Sourdough discard fits into more dessert recipes than you'd expect. 

7) Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies 

If you think you’ve tried every chocolate chip cookie recipe out there, consider reaching for your discard. Each ball of cookie dough is rolled in chopped chocolate to ensure melty puddles in every bite, and the baked cookies have an ideal texture, with crispy edges and soft middles.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies 

Shop the recipe: Valrhona Dark Chocolate and Valrhona Milk Chocolate

Sourdough Granola Photography by Rick Holbrook; Food Styling by Kaitlin Wayne
A genius and practical way to make your own granola

8) Sourdough Granola 

Who knew you could use discard to bind your granola? Not only does the discard ensure the granola remains light and crispy (no rock-hard lumps here!) but using discard also means you can use less sweetener overall to bind the granola mixture.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Granola 

Shop the recipe: Half-Sheet Pan

Do-Nothing Sourdough Bread Photography and food styling by Kristin Teig
This sourdough bread doesn't ask much of you. We promise!

9) Do-Nothing Sourdough Bread 

This recipe is as low-effort, high-reward as it gets. The artisan-style loaf is made with sourdough discard you can use straight from the fridge (though make sure your starter is healthy and ideally fed within the past week), and there’s no kneading and very little shaping required. If you’re newer to sourdough baking, start here.

Get the recipe: Do-Nothing Sourdough Bread 

Shop the recipe: Brotform and Liner Set

Sourdough Zucchini Bread Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
This classic quick bread gets a few new twists. 

10) Sourdough Zucchini Bread 

What happens when you have a pile of zucchinis and a heap of discard to bake with? Enter Sourdough Zucchini Bread. Instead of the usual cinnamon flavoring, this recipe opts for lemon zest and nutmeg for a refreshing take on the original.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Zucchini Bread 

Shop the recipe: Stone-Ground White Whole Wheat Flour and Nutmeg

Sourdough Cinnamon Crumb Cake Photography and food styling by Kristin Teig
The more streusel, the better. 

11) Sourdough Cinnamon Crumb Cake 

There’s no such thing as too much streusel, and this Sourdough Cinnamon Crumb Cake is a prime example of that. Discard makes a wonderful addition to this otherwise traditional breakfast cake, infusing its signature tang.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Cinnamon Crumb Cake 

Shop the recipe: Pure Vanilla Extract

Sourdough English Muffins Photography by John Sherman; food styling by Liz Neily
Nooks, crannies, and plenty of sourdough tang guaranteed

12) Sourdough English Muffins 

It’s hard to go back to store-bought after a taste of these delightfully craggy, chewy English muffins. The recipe yields two dozen English muffins, so these are ideal for large families or meal prep that’ll last for weeks to come when stored in the freezer.

Get the recipe: Sourdough English Muffins 

Shop the recipe: Baker’s Special Dry Milk

Sourdough Chocolate Cake Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
Who knew sourdough discard and chocolate were such a fine pairing?

13) Sourdough Chocolate Cake 

Discard (plus baking soda) gives this cake its loft and plush texture. If you're worried that it will make the cake too sour, fear not: The discard just enhances the cake's deep chocolatey flavor. There’s copious amounts of chocolate and coffee here: cocoa in the cake batter, espresso powder in the icing, and melted chocolate chips in the drizzle. It’s baked in a 9" x 13" pan and can feed a crowd, but you’d be surprised just how quickly this sheet cake disappears.

Get the recipe: Sourdough Chocolate Cake 

Shop the recipe: Triple Cocoa Blend and Espresso Powder

14) The Simplest Sourdough Biscuits 

Bake these sourdough biscuits enough times, and you can commit this recipe to memory: One part liquid, two parts butter, three parts sourdough starter, and four parts flour. They’re flaky, tender, and just tangy enough. Take YouTube host Martin Philip’s word for it: “It’s impossible to eat this with a frown, right?” 

Get the recipe: The Simplest Sourdough Biscuits 

Shop the recipe: Bench Knife

Sourdough Banana Bread Photography and food styling by Liz Neily
A recipe for the inevitable overripe bananas on your counter. 

15) Sourdough Banana Bread 

Make the most of two ingredients at the end of their life: overripe bananas and sourdough discard. Not only does the discard improve the bread’s flavor, but it also increases its shelf life so you can snack on this quick bread all week long.  

Get the recipe: Sourdough Banana Bread 

Shop the recipe: Vietnamese Cinnamon 

Cover photo (Classic Sourdough Waffles or Pancakes) by Rick Holbrook, food styling by Kaitlin Wayne. 

Looking for more sourdough education? Visit our guide: How to Bake Sourdough

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About Tatiana Bautista

Tatiana Bautista is a writer, editor, and avid home baker and cook. She grew up on Long Island, New York, where her family helped instill a lifelong love of food through homestyle Toisanese dishes and weekly outings for dim sum. From a young age, she’s had an interest in baking thanks to her aunt, w...
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