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  • Cariss Cole

Amish Friendship Bread Starter

Updated: Dec 29, 2020

Amish Friendship bread is a tradition that has been going around for a long time. The root of "friendship" bread goes well beyond the Amish culture, as the base is simply a sourdough starter mix.

This Amish sourdough variety is a simple base known for creating a sweet, mouthwatering cinnamon confection that bridges the gap between cake and bread. "Friendship Bread" has been coined as such due to it's tradition of the sourdough starter being passed from friend to friend as the mix "grows".

Sourdoughs date back several thousand years and have many varieties. There are many different methods of making sourdough starters. This recipe is simply to create a sourdough starter mix that can be used to create a wide variety of sourdough items from rolls to muffins and beyond.

Sourdough Starter Mix

  • Ready in 10 Days

  • Creates (4) 1 cup Starter Mixes


  • 1 packet of original active dry yeast

  • ¼ cup warm water

  • 1 cup milk

  • 1 cup flour

  • 1 cup sugar

  • Gallon zip lock bag or quart size jar

  • Additional 1 cup each: flour, sugar, milk to feed the starter on day 6

Starter Mix Preparation

1. Activate Yeast Stir ¼ cup warm water into one packet of active dry yeast and a tablespoon of sugar and place in a microwave or cover with plastic wrap to proof. Let stand 10 mins or until volume doubles.

2. Add one cup each : flour, sugar and milk into a large bowl.

3. Fold activated yeast into flour mix. Pour into a gallon zip lock bag or 1 quart (minimum) jar. Seal bag or jar. This is considered day 1. Hint: I like to use a dry erase marker on the lid of my jar to keep track of the day. You may also write with a sharpie on a zip lock bag.

NOTE: due to the nature of fermenting you MUST release air almost daily. It is natural for the starter mix to bubble, raise and ferment. Mix will begin to smell sour through the process.

  • Do not refrigerate the mix. Allow to sit on the counter.

  • The original recipe says not to use any type of metal in this process, I’ve tested every way I can and there is no difference with modern metals.

  • You can make this Amish friendship bread without sharing by discarding excess starter.

Sourdough Starter Mix Process

Day 1 _______________ Starter Creation

Day 2 ______________ Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 3 _______________Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 4 _______________Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 5 _______________Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 6 _______________ Feed Starter by adding 1 cup each flour, sugar, & milk and mix.

Day 7 _______________Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 8 _______________ Mush the Bag / Shake the Jar

Day 9 _______________ Mush the Bag/ Shake the Jar

Day 10 _____________ Mixing Day

Printable PDF Recipe


Do not forget to release air from the container throughout the process.

Mixing Day

1. Pour Starter Mix into a mixing bowl.

2. Add 1 cup each : flour, sugar & milk.

3. Mix thoroughly.

4. Pour (3) one cup starters into new gallon zip lock bags or quart jars.

5. Give to friends with instructions, freeze for a later day or discard extra as the starter will continue to grow and last as long as you continue to feed it.

Click here for the printable PDF for This Sourdough Starter Mix .

You'll love the delectable cinnamon bread that has become know in the Amish Tradition, which I will be sharing soon along with my favorite variations of the recipe for friendship bread.

Comment below or connect with questions on the process.

Keep Smiling Always

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