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GF Sourdough Starter

Average: 4.7 (3 votes)
This recipe makes 1 starter
Water1 cup
Active Dry Yeast2+1/4 tsp
White Rice Flour1+1/2 cup

Rice flour has the ability to ferment easily, creating a wonderful base for delicious breads with a slightly sour flavor. Once made, the sourdough starter can be used over and over again. Replenish it each time it is used to nourish the yeast and keep the starter alive. As the starter gets older, the flavor will become tangier; baked products made with "aged" starters will have more sourdough flavor. The starter serves as the leavening so no additional yeast is needed.


To make a starter: In a 4-cup glass, plastic or stainless steel container, combine 1 cup water (110° to 115°F) with 2+1/4 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast and 1+1/2 cups white rice flour. The mixture will be thick. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or foil. Let stand in a warm place one to three days, stirring 2 or 3 times each day. The starter will "rise and fall" during the fermentation period; it becomes thinner as it stands. When the starter is developed, it is bubbly and may have a liquid layer on top; stir into the starter before using. The starter can then be used for baking or placed in the refrigerator to use later.


To replenish starter: Always have at least one cup of starter left over and add 1 cup of water (110° to 115°F) and 1+1/2 cups of white rice flour. Cover loosely and let stand in a warm place 12 hours. The starter can then be used for baking or placed in the refrigerator to use later.



NOTE: You can substitute Instant (Quick Rise) in place of Active Dry Yeast in gluten free recipes. When using Instant Yeast, expect your batter/dough to rise faster - about 50% faster. Adjust your rise times accordingly.  Traditional methods: substitute equal amounts; Bread Machine: use 1/2 tsp Instant Yeast OR 3/4 tsp Active Dry Yeast per cup of flour in your recipe. Visit Gluten Free tips and Lessons in Yeast & Baking for more information.



This makes an awesome loaf but even though my starter smelled VERY strong, the sour taste did not come through in the bread. Did I do something wrong?

Hi Jeanne, I'm sure you

Hi Jeanne,

I'm sure you didn't do anything wrong.  Try it again when the starter ages a little more, maybe you'll get a stronger flavor.


~Carol @RSY

Feeding the starter

How often do you feed this starter and what do you feed it? Most starters you have to feed every 8 - 12 hours

If it is not used for baking

If it is not used for baking and replenished in the meantime, it should be fed once every 2 weeks.  Remove 1 cup of starter, then feed it by replacing it with 1 cup flour, 2/3 cup of water and 1 teaspoon of sugar.  Allow the replenished starter to sit at RT for about 12 hours, then refrigerate it.

rice flour question

I am really glad to find a good recipe for gluten free sourdough starter but was wondering if I could use brown rice flour instead of white?

Yes, you can substitute brown

Yes, you can substitute brown rice flour for the white in this recipe.  Happy baking!

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