This tasty and flexible muffin recipe is adapted from The Basic Sourdough Muffin recipe on the Cultures for Health site. They have lots of air pockets from the sourdough and soda, and a lovely chewiness/elasticity. Nice crust on top. Yum.

  • ½ cup sourdough starter
  • 1½ cups white or whole wheat flour, or a combination
  • up to ½ cup water, as needed (depending on wetness of starter)
  • ½ cup (1 stick) melted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • ½ cup sugar (evaporated cane juice, coconut sugar, Sucanat, or a similar dry sweetener)
  • ½ to 1 cup add-ins such as fruit, nuts, vanilla, and any desired spices (optional)


In the afternoon/evening (or, in the morning)

  • Gently mix together starter and flour until just combined.
  • Add water, a little bit at a time, until dough is JUST wet enough to mix (it should be very stiff).
  • Gather the dough into a ball, and cover bowl with a lid or plastic wrap to keep the dough from drying out.
  • Ferment for at least 8 hours or overnight.

In the morning (or, in the evening)

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Whisk together eggs, salt, sugar, and any spices or vanilla you are using, then gently and patiently work in the starter/flour mix, being careful not to mix too much. (The dough may still be quite stiff at first, particularly if given a shorter ferment time.)
  • Gently fold in the soda, then butter and any fruit or nut additions.
  • Fill prepared (greased or paper-lined) muffin tins ¾ full with batter.
  • Bake in pre-heated oven for 22-28 minutes, or until golden and not sticky (check, and be careful not to dry them out)
Some possible variations:
  • frozen raspberries, vanilla extract, cinnamon, corriander and ginger
  • chopped apples, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger
  • fresh or frozen blueberries, vanilla extract or lemon zest, nutmeg and ginger
  • chocolate chip with vanilla and cinnamon
  • chocolate chocolate chip with cocoa, cinnamon and vanilla
  • chocolate banana with cocoa and chocolate chips
  • or just vanilla, cinamon and nutmeg
One recipe makes 12-16 medium sized muffins, depending on how full you fill the tins and how much extra stuff you add in. You can be quite generous with spices in these muffins, as their ‘base’ flavor can be relatively strong. All or part whole wheat flour will produce a less elastic consistency than white flour only. I think that a fruit addition is nice because it adds moisture. You can also add a third egg to this recipe for a more cake-like consistency and a little extra protein.

The first time I made these, I used around 2/3 of a cup of raspberries (frozen) and some vanilla, cinnamon, corriander and ginger. I baked them around 24 minutes on a convection-bake setting. The finished product was awesome. The second time, I made apple cinnamon with 1/2 whole wheat flour, and I think I might have baked them too long, because they were rather dry. The next time, I styled them as cupcakes—I added an extra egg, and made them chocolate chocolate chip.

Because everyone’s starter/oven/room temperature/etc. are different, you may find you need to play with these instructions a bit. After many decades of severe intimidation, I have been finding that baking really is at least as much an art as it is a science. Please get creative, and let me know what you come up with!