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This easy sourdough naan flatbread recipe is made using sourdough starter discard and doesn’t require yeast! Plus, it’s brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with garlic, what more could you want?
If you’re new to sourdough starters or baking with a starter, this is a great recipe to try! (Says the woman who has yet to make an actual loaf of bread with her two-year-old starter…)
Ingredients you'll need:
- Sourdough discard (what is removed from the starter before feeding)
- Whole Milk
- Greek Yogurt (or Sour Cream)
- Baking Powder
- Butter (for serving)
- Garlic (for serving)
I still haven’t gotten up the nerve to bake a loaf of sourdough bread, even though I have two simple recipes that are, in theory, “fool proof.” That’s because they’ve never been attempted by me. I’m not good with yeast. I’ve mentioned this before and I’ll mention it again (and again and again). The whole reason I’m attempting this starter situation is because I want to be better with yeast.
To that end – I made this sourdough naan recipe using discard! There isn’t actually any yeast in it – but it does the proofing and the resting and the rising of yeasted dough.
How to make this Sourdough Discard Naan Recipe:
- Whisk together the dry ingredients.
- Whisk together the wet ingredients.
- Combine the dry and the wet ingredients.
- Let the naan dough rise a first time in a warm space.
- Turn out the dough and knead it gently.
- Divide into four equal pieces.
- Roll out on a lightly floured surface.
- Cook in a hot, DRY skillet to get those characteristic sourdough naan bubbles.
- Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with garlic and chopped herbs.
It’s still a miracle to me that I’ve managed to keep my starter alive for over two years. It still happily eats when I remember to feed it (even if that hasn’t happened for six months). It makes delicious chocolate chunk blondies and muffins and, of course, this naan recipe. All without yeast! The wonders of sourdough starter!
Ways to serve naan bread:
- As a side to chicken tikka masala (or any other delicious Indian dish!)
- Sliced with a side of hummus.
- As the crust of personal pizzas!
- As the wrap part of a Chicken, Bacon, Ranch Wrap (or any other wrap, actually).
Sourdough Discard Naan Recipe
- ½ cup sourdough starter discard
- ¼ cup whole milk warmed slightly
- 2 tablespoon full fat Greek yogurt or sour cream
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour divded
- ½ tsp. baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- In a large measuring cup, whisk together the starter, milk, and Greek yogurt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together 1 cup of the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Pour liquid ingredients into dry and whisk until a loose, somewhat sticky dough is formed. If dough seems too sticky, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. Dough is ready when it is tacky but not sticky. Cover with a clean dish towel and let rest in a warm place for 1 – 2 hours.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about three minutes. Cut into four equal pieces.
- Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out each piece of dough into a circular/oval shape. Cover again with a dishtowel and let rest for five to ten minutes.
- While the naan rests, preheat a large griddle over medium-high heat. One by one, place the shaped naan onto heated surface. Cook for three to four minutes on one side, dough should puff up and form bubbles, kind of like pancakes. Flip over and cook for three to four minutes more. Repeat process with remaining dough.
- While naan is still warm, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with additional salt, fresh garlic, chopped parsley or other seasonings, if desired.
- Fed or active sourdough starter can also be used in this recipe, if desired.
- Recipe adapted from My Kitchen Addiction
How do you make the starter?
I was actually gifted it from a friend. But, if I'm not mistaken it can be made with flour and water and the wild yeast/bacteria in the air. I'd imagine there are instructions online!
I saw this thing on tv one time. Some place was still making bread with a starter that came over from Europe in the 1840s!
DLCS Management says
I’ve got a link to A blog and video of the Zero Waste Chef on my blog, I made my starter based on her tips.
I got my starter from King Arthur Flour.....excellent!
Can this be frozen? I’ve tried this recipe and will use it often.
Hi Bill, so happy to hear that! Yes, it can be frozen. When it is fully cool, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. I like to throw it in a ziploc bag too, if I know I won't be using it for awhile. Defrost in the fridge overnight and then warm it up on a dry skillet or in the oven!
DLCS Management says
My starter has been alive for about 3 weeks now and my first bread wasn’t fluffy or airy, but it was beautiful and tasty. My discard crackers and pancakes were great though, looking forward to trying your naans!
I made this last night 7/26/20. Turned out really good, was fluffy. I would not expect airy in a quick rise, although I let mine rise room temp for 2 hrs then put in the fridge to stop it so I could work outside. I did need to add more milk to get it to be tacky and I am sure it is because of the discard, some could be different than another. I also made a yeasted naan to see the difference. The discard one was much fluffier and tastier.
I am so happy to hear you enjoyed it! I've let mine rise for over an hour too, just too see what happens (and also because I've forgotten about it!) and have always had success. You're absolutely right about moisture differences among starters. Every one is so unique!
Do you have the measurements in grams?
Hi Gavin! They are: 100g starter, 123g milk, 30.6g yogurt, 192g flour, pinch of salt, 14.2g butter, 8.6g garlic. Hope this helps! If you ever encounter a recipe without gram measurements, a simple google search will help you convert! That's what I've done before. Also, my starter is relatively loose, so you may need to add a pinch or two of extra flour to get the dough to combine. Just FYI. Happy making 🙂
Wendy Tran says
Hi! I am looking forward to using this recipe!! I am wondering though does it have to be whole milk or can it be 2%? Thank you 🙂
Hi Wendy! I've never tested the recipe with 2% milk. I imagine it would turn out very similar to the original (there will just be less fat in the recipe), but don't recommend trying it with anything lower fat than 2%. Let me know how it turns out!
Can I make the dough the night before and put it in a bowl in the refrigerator? I'd like to make them fresh tomorrow
Hi Stacey! You can absolutely make the dough ahead of time, but just note that you'll want to let them rise twice as long (if not longer), because the starter will be sluggish from the cold! Enjoy!
Workin Mama says
What does the yogurt do in the recipe? Is it just for flavor / texture, or does it play a different role. I only have vanilla yogurt, which may work (but maybe make it too sweet). I also have plain cream cheese.
Hey Workin Mama! The yogurt does a few things - it adds flavor, yes. That tangy, creaminess from a whole-milk yogurt. But! It also adds fat which lends moisture to the dough. Vanilla *may* work, but you're absolutely correct that it will change the entire flavor of the dish. I think you're best using the cream cheese - or even sour cream if you have it!
I hate just throwing out starter, so I found this recipe; definitely a keeper, even my husband raved and he will eat pretty much anything I put in front of him - he doesn't cook at all and appreciates the fact that I love to. Super easy to make and delicious - I planned an Indian meal around the Naan - lentil madras, basmati rice, garnished with cherry tomatoes from my garden (still have a few - hasn't reached freezing weather here yet) and parsley. Yum! BTW...I received my starter from Cultures for Health just a couple of days ago and now I know how starter should really look and smell; it was live and liquid and I had to use it right away - it worked exactly as described.
Oh Rita I am so happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe! And your husband too! And fresh tomatoes in December?! What a dream! Thanks for commenting 🙂
Looking forward to trying out this recipe later this week! I do need to say this though, sourdough starter IS yeast! It’s made of wild yeasts from the air. So when you say, “all without yeast!” You’re actually using the most naturally occurring yeasts 🙂
Yes, of course! I should say "without additional yeast." I sure hope you enjoy the recipe!
This was an easy, tasty way to use the discard I always feel guilty about throwing out. It is also a hot bread you can do in a few hours after work to have for dinner. Yummy, Thank you!
Oh I am so happy to hear that! Thanks so much for enjoying <3
Megan Littlejohn says
I recently bought a starter on a trip to San Fransisco. I have kept it fed and happy and finally am using it this weekend. My first creation was this naan. I had to make a couple substitutions. I only had 2% milk and full fat sour cream so I used that. I used 1/8 tsp salt and i may increase it next time or lightly salt the surface after cooking as the recipe suggests because it could have used a little salt. I added a small dash (maybe 1/2 tsp) avocado oil to make up for missing fat from milk to dough. My starter was quite active and rose beautifully. The slight sour taste was nice and mild. I used 1/4 tsp granulated garlic mixed in with the dry ingredients. I let the dough stay sorta sticky and only floured as much as i needed to keep it manageable. Pressed out and stretched by hand because i don't have a rolling pin at this time.
Cooked in a 10 inch iron skillet. Tried cooking dry and with avocado oil. Cooking dry as instructed is best. So delicious. I'm adding chives to the dough next time. This is going to be a household staple! Ty for the great recipe.
I'm happy to hear it turned out so well Megan! Thanks for making my recipe 🙂
We've been eating a lot of chicken Tikka masala lately and always serve it with this naan! 10/10!
Wendy Graham says
I have only recently re-visited sourdough, having lived through the pervasive but short lived "Friendship Bread" craze during the 80's and receiving starter from my daughter for this past Christmas-the gift that keeps on giving! The difference between using sourdough of 30 plus years ago and now is the benefit of having access to amazing recipes like this one online. This naan is so good, easy to make, and uses discard-no need to throw away or compost that. I am loving it as a personal pizza with pesto or pizza sauce. Thank you, Amanda!
Robin Skiff says
FYI, if you liked the friendship bread, I've found that if you culture your sour-dough starter according to the friendship bread recipe (equal parts milk, sugar & flour), it makes the friendship bread just fine! You don't have to wait for some Amish grandma to start sending it around any more, lol.
monique macdonald says
What do I do with the leftover 1/2 cup of flour?
Amanda Gajdosik says
Hi Monique, that extra half cup is meant to be used *just in case* - not every sourdough starter is the same - some are runnier than others. In step 3 of the recipe, I explain what to do with that extra 1/2 cup. "Pour liquid ingredients into dry and whisk until a loose, somewhat sticky dough is formed. If dough seems too sticky, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time. Dough is ready when it is tacky but not sticky. Cover with a clean dish towel and let rest in a warm place for 1 – 2 hours." It's all about the feel of the dough. If you don't require the extra flour because of how hydrated your starter is, there's no need to use it. Hope this helped!