These sourdough English muffins come out light, fluffy and delicious every time. The kids love them almost as much as I do!
This sourdough English muffin recipe is my new favorite discard recipe, and it’s easy to see why! I swear I will be making these as often as I make sourdough because they’re that good.
They are very easy to cook, and just require some simple planning to make the pre-mix the night before.
Don’t get discouraged if you’re missing some kitchen tools. There are lots of kitchen hacks to make this sourdough English muffins recipe possible!
- If you don’t have a biscuit cutter, you can use a drinking glass.
- If you don’t have a cast iron pan, you can use a regular frying pan, or an electric griddle.
- If you don’t have a rolling pin, you can use a wine bottle or push the dough down with your hands.
I personally prefer to mix my sourdough English muffins using my stand mixer and dough hook. It’s easier, less messy, takes less time, and I think it does a better job. But some people prefer hand mixing and kneading, and that’s great too! Both techniques work equally well, it’s just a matter of preference.
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When I make my muffins, I don’t put them on the pan and walk away. I babysit them to make sure they’re perfect! I lift and check the muffins every minute. Obsessive? Maybe, but it takes mere seconds to go from perfectly cooked to burned. Trust me, I know from experience!
It’s important to keep an eye on the heat. Some stoves will be medium, some will be low. I set mine to low heat and let my cast iron heat for 7-8 minutes; otherwise, my muffins will burn. Better to start too low than to start too high!
After I lift and check, I rotate them slightly. I have an electric range (someday I’ll have a gas range again!) so the center of my pan is always warmer than the edges. By rotating them as they cook, it ensures they cook evenly and they’re browned all the way around.
I also switch the center sourdough English muffin with one from the edge about two or three minutes in. After I flip them, I do the same thing. Again, this ensures the center muffin isn’t way overcooked.
For more consistent results, try baking your English muffins on an electric griddle. You can control the temperature more closely, and make a lot more at once! This is my new favorite go-to method.
To avoid your English muffins from doming upwards, place a cookie sheet on top of your muffins after the first few minutes of cooking. This keeps the tops flat and still allows for some final rise, ensuring a perfect muffin at the end!
By the way, make sure you’re slicing your English muffins the right way: with a fork! Simply stab the fork tines in toward the center of the muffin and go all the way around. The muffin pulls apart and it makes a crumbly surface that toasts like a dream. Give it a try!
If you don’t already have a starter, get started making one using this guide and recipe: How to Make Sourdough Starter in Six Easy Steps.
And check out this exhaustive list of the Internet’s Best Sourdough Discard Recipes if you need more inspiration for other discard recipes to try!
Be sure to send me an email or leave me a comment if you try this recipe for sourdough English muffins! Would love to hear about your results.
Happy baking – and eating!
Click to watch the video recipe!
Oh, and by the way, if you’re looking for some more help understanding hydration, click here to check out The Beginner’s Guide to Sourdough Hydration.
And don’t forget I have a whole page of resources available to help you in your sourdough journey – click here to find it!
Simple Sourdough English Muffins
The Night Before
- 1/2 cup starter discard
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour or more as needed
- 1 cup milk
The Next Day
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour or more as needed
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- cornmeal for dusting
The Night Before
- To make your overnight sponge: combine discard with flour and milk. Stir well to combine, and cover loosely with plastic. Rest on countertop overnight, or for up to 18 hours.
The Next Day
- Dust baking sheet with cornmeal; set aside.
- Add flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda to overnight sponge, and stir well to combine. The consistency should be like bread dough, and highly depends on the hydration of your starter discard. If needed, add more flour or more milk a little bit at a time to achieve this consistency.
- Mix in stand mixer with dough hook on low for 2-3 minutes, or by hand on a floured surface for 4-5 minutes. The dough should be the consistency of a soft bread dough, very slightly sticky. Add more flour or milk to achieve this consistency.
- Lightly dust a rolling pin with flour and roll out dough to 1/2" to 3/4" thickness. Cut muffins using a biscuit cutter or cup rim, dusted with flour. Push straight down; do not twist!Combine remaining dough into a ball and let rest 10 minutes. Then roll out and cut as above, getting as many muffins from the dough as possible.
- Transfer cut muffins to cornmeal-dusted baking sheet and let rest for 45-60 minutes.
- Preheat a cast iron skillet over low or medium-low heat for several minutes (better to start your heat on the low side than on the high side!). Place muffins in skillet, six at a time, and cook for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown. Check undersides every minute. Dust tops lightly with cornmeal and flip, cooking 5-7 minutes more.
- Serve warm, or toast before serving if cooled.