Amish Friendship Bread: Starter and Bread Recipe plus the Story!

Amish Friendship Bread, the starter, the recipe variations, and all the lore surrounding the process is a fascinating topic. I was terribly tempted to title this post: Sharing a Delicious Recipe and Debunking a Few Myths. At the last minute I restrained myself. Amish Friendship bread is the kitchen’s version of a chain letter. There are no promises of great riches or good luck if you make the bread.Nobody will send you 500 embroidered handkerchiefs or 300 postcards or 250 teabags. If anything, you might gain a few pounds if you really like the results! If you break the chain, however, there are no threats of dire curses. Of course, the good news is that if you make the bread, you get a delicious treat.

First, I’ll share the recipe and then I’ll talk a little bit about the mythic mystique of this recipe.

[Note: At this point, this post is rather deep in our archives, but please feel free to talk amongst yourselves. If you see a point that hasn’t been sufficiently addressed in the comments, please jump in and and help each other out. If something new or unusual gets asked, we’re happy to come back to the conversation. NOW….back to the previously scheduled recipe!]

I’m going to copy straight off the recipe that I received with my ziploc bag of starter. I wish I could give better credit to the original recipe writer, but there is no indication on the paper where it came from. Wikipedia says that Amish Friendship bread started in the 1990’s, probably by a Girl Scout Troop.

Amish Cinnamon Friendship Bread

Important Tips:

  • Do not use a metal bowl or spoon for mixing (see my note about this below)
  • Do not refrigerate.
  • It is normal for batter to thicken, bubble, or ferment

Day 1: You receive the fermented batter in a 1 gallon ziploc bag. Do Nothing. Just place the bag on the kitchen counter.

Day 2: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 3: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 4: Add 1 c. of flour, 1 c. of sugar, 1 c. of milk. Squeeze bag.

Day 5: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 6: Add 1 c. each flour, sugar, and milk. Squeeze bag.

Day 7: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 8: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 9: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 10: In a large, non-metal bowl, combine batter with 1 c. each flour, sugar, and milk. Mix with a wooden spoon. Pour four 1-cup starters into individual gallon ziploc bags. Give away starters to friends with this set of directions. It is important to follow this sequence exactly.

To the remaining batter add:

  • 1 c. canola oil
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. salt
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1 large box of instant vanilla pudding
  • 2 t. cinnamon

In separate bowl, mix 1 t. cinnamon and 3 T. sugar. Sprinkle into well-greased loaf pans and coat the sides with sugar mixture. Do not use Pam or other non-stick spray. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until done.

Variations:

Banana Bread:

  • 1 box instant banana pudding
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 2 handfuls of nuts

Chocolate Bread:

  • 1 box of instant choc. pudding
  • 1 T. cocoa
  • 2 handfuls of chocolate chips

Now for Barb’s Unapologetically Non-conforming Notes:

First, the bit about not using a metal bowl or spoon? Horsefeathers. I think this falls into the “mystique” division. I always mix this up in my Kitchenaid METAL mixing bowl. The only metal things that I really avoid are old aluminum utensils. Aluminum is reactive metal. I haven’t personally seen this recipe react with aluminum, but I avoid it nonetheless. I suspect that the worst that might happen is the batter would take on a grayish cast.

Second, it is NOT necessary to follow these steps precisely. If you forget to do anything with your starter for a week, don’t toss it out. If you WANT to delay making the bread up, stick the starter in the fridge. It will last MONTHS in a good, cold fridge. If it turns pink, it’s spoiled and THEN you should throw it out.

Third, Pam spray works just fine for greasing the loaf pans. Maybe forbidding Pam spray is supposed to make this sound more Amish, but I MUCH prefer the texture that the Pam and the sugar makes on the crust.

Although my paper doesn’t say this explicitly, I have read many different places that only the Amish know how to make the starter and it’s a deep dark secret. But that is also myth. I have no idea if this recipe started in the Amish community, but there is nothing magical about the starter.

In fact, if you DO end up throwing out your pink spoiled starter, but have developed a taste for this friendship bread, you can start your own batch. Simply put 1 c. flour, 1 c. sugar, 1 c. milk, and 1 T. yeast in a ziploc bag and let it sit on the counter. Call that Day 1, and you’re good to go.

Interesting note: there is a similar recipe in Germany called Hermann cake. This cake uses a starter as well. I’ve had Hermann cake several times over the years in this country, so clearly that is also not a geographically proprietary recipe.

One thing that is NOT a myth is this. You MUST use boxes of Instant pudding. Cooked pudding mixes gives an entirely different and entirely unacceptable texture to this bread.

One last note: I’ve reduced the oil in the recipe to 2/3 c. with no bad effects.

It’s a funny thing. When I talk to people about Amish Friendship Bread, a LOT of folks feel quite a BURDEN when they receive a starter. It really helps a lot to know that if you keep all your starter for yourself, it’s okay. If you dump it the first day, you are only throwing out 1 cup of a sugar/flour/milk/yeast mixture. You’re not really letting anyone down or breaking a sacred trust. You’re not disrespecting any Amish people.You’re also not breaking some historic chain of breads.

It also helps to know that there are any number of rules that you can break with no real consequence. If I couldn’t make this bread in my mixer, I promise I’d never make it at all–so be free of rules against metal!

Barb

[Added Nov. 18, 2007] But first: for those of you just joining us on this now enormous post with a zillion comments…if you have questions about your AFB starter, try reading down the comments first. A great many questions have already been answered, and we’re starting to see a lot of repeat questions from people who have not read the answers that are there. Thanks! [Back to the normally scheduled recipe. ;-)]

[Added January 11, 2008: Our comment thread is nearing 100. In comments we’ve covered everything that *I* can imagine needing to know about AFB and a few things I never thought to even wonder about. We have some GREAT comments. If you have a pressing question, please read the comments FIRST because very likely it’s already been answered.]

[Added May 15, 2008: Our comment thread has reached 130 comments with lots of great ideas and tips for AFB. The length of this post has started to bog down my computer, so I’m starting a new post on AFB called Amish Friendship Bread, Part 2. The new post has some great new ideas from reader, Anne. The new post also has open comments! Please read through all the valuable comments from readers before posting new questions.]

PS: Don’t forget to visit Amish Friendship Bread Part TWO!

 

Amish Friendship Bread: Starter and Bread Recipe plus the Story!

Rating: 51

Yield: 2 loaves

Variations:

Banana Bread:

1 box instant banana pudding 1 mashed banana 2 handfuls of nuts Chocolate Bread:

1 box of instant choc. pudding 1 T. cocoa 2 handfuls of chocolate chips

Ingredients

  • 1 to 1.5 c. starter
  • 1 c. canola oil
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. salt
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1 large box of instant vanilla pudding
  • 2 t. cinnamon

Instructions

Important Tips:

Do not use a metal bowl or spoon for mixing (see my note about this below)

Do not refrigerate.

It is normal for batter to thicken, bubble, or ferment

Day 1: You receive the fermented batter in a 1 gallon ziploc bag. Do Nothing. Just place the bag on the kitchen counter.

Day 2: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 3: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 4: Add 1 c. of flour, 1 c. of sugar, 1 c. of milk. Squeeze bag.

Day 5: Squeeze the bag several times.

Day 6: Add 1 c. each flour, sugar, and milk. Squeeze bag.

Day 7: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 8: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 9: Squeeze bag several times.

Day 10: In a large, non-metal bowl, combine batter with 1 c. each flour, sugar, and milk. Mix with a wooden spoon. Pour four 1-cup starters into individual gallon ziploc bags. Give away starters to friends with this set of directions. It is important to follow this sequence exactly.

Mix above ingredients together. In separate bowl, mix 1 t. cinnamon and 3 T. sugar. Sprinkle into well-greased loaf pans and coat the sides with sugar mixture. Do not use Pam or other non-stick spray. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until done.

http://www.mysisterskitchenonline.com/2007/03/22/amish-friendship-bread/

176 thoughts on “Amish Friendship Bread: Starter and Bread Recipe plus the Story!

  1. LOL ~ thanks for the information, Barb. I remember when I received my first bag of starter years ago when we were living in CA, and I carried on the whole things for MONTHS until I got tired of it. I still have the recipe, you listed above, but always wondered how to make the starter. Now I can ~ thanks!
    ~ Paulla 🙂

  2. I enjoyed reading this! I made my final loaves yesterday and then decided I had to call it quits with all of this – the gaining a pound or two part is correct! I would like to figure out how to be able to just make one batch of the bread, without having to deal with the four other starters. Have you figured that one out yet? I just feel like I am wasting so much flour, sugar, and milk when I follow the directions but then just scoop the four cupos down the drain instead of turning them into other starters.

  3. Hi, Noel, just off the top of my head, one solution is to stick the additional four cups of starter in the freezer to use later. That takes care of the waste issue. Of course, each time you use one of those frozen cups, you’ll end up with 4 more cups of starter in the freezer. This could get out of control real fast.

    I need to do some measuring while I’m in the process. In the fermenting process, you add 3 c. each of flour, sugar, and milk over time to the original 1 c. of starter. I think that the trick might be to do a mini-starter. I’ll have to play with that one a bit to give you actual proportions. The other thing I would like to measure is how much starter actually goes into the recipe when you DO bake it off. I’ll get back to you on that one…

    Barb

    • Hi Noel and Barb, you wouldn’t even have to freeze the starter you can just make 3 or 4 batches of bread and then freezer the bread. Since this site has the recipe for a starter you could start fresh next time you want more.

    • thats odd that her recipe says to add 1c flour-sugar-water on day four AND six. the recipe i received was just adding the 1 cup stuff on day 6, and it came out great. i originally found this site cuz i had some day-10 batter that i didnt end up baking so i tossed iti n the freezer… hopefully its not pink… where do u buy yeast anyway??

  4. Barb, I used to make this years ago, about the time I started gaining all that weight I’ve worked so hard to lose recently. My son wants me to start this back up. I’ve successfully used 2/3 c. unsweetened applesauce and 1/3 c. oil to reduce the fat content. I’m going to try using splenda in place of sugar when I bake the bread, but I’m not sure about using splenda in the starter. I may try that, just to see. And I plan on using sugar-free pudding too. I’ll let you know how this goes. In fact, I’m going to start the starter today! (with splenda). This has my scientific mind intrigued…..

  5. Beth, I definitely want to know how that goes. I think that you’d need at least SOME sugar in the starter for the yeast to feed on. You probably don’t need as MUCH as the recipe calls for. You might also want to watch the starter closely because the amount of time you let things ferment might be longer or shorter. Good luck!

    Barb

  6. Barb,
    Finally! someone who has answers to this recipe! The starters that I have put in the freezer, are they ONLY used as starters for another time, or can I use this to make more bread.? Also, I have noticed there are recipes that do not require yeast. What is the differance? Do you know?
    Thanks!
    Charlene

  7. Hi, Charlene,

    I’m flattered that you think I have the answers…I can give you some tips, but I really am not a total expert on this. A lot of my cooking is trial and error and it almost always turns out just fine.

    You should be able to take the starters out of the freezer and use those for bread. The thing that I don’t know is how much starter you actually USE in a recipe. I know that it’s more than just one cup.

    Here’s what I would do. I’d take one of those starters out of the freezer and go thru all the steps. When it comes time to make up the bread, measure how much starter is left in your bowl that you DON’T theoretically put in ziploc bags. That’s how much starter you need to be putting in the ziploc bags in the future if you want to just pull it out of the freezer and bake bread with it. Does that make sense?

    About the yeast…if you notice, the only time you use yeast is if you’re starting the starter from scratch–NOT if you’ve received the starter from someone. From working with sourdough, I can tell you that you don’t NEED commercial yeast for the starter to grow. It might turn out a little more sour and have a different “personality” with wild yeasts. It also will take a few days longer without any commercial yeast, but it should work.

    Amish Friendship Bread is considered a quick-bread even though the starter has yeast in it. This is because you don’t knead it or get the gluten formation that you’d get in a true yeast dough.

    Good luck,

    Barb

  8. Barb,
    Thanks for the information. I have one more question. I kept 2 bags for myself and did not freeze them, but started them as day “2” as another start. It is day 5 and they do not seem to be growing as well as the original start I made.
    The one with NO yeast is bubbling but the one WITH yeast looks pretty flat! Am I doing this correctly? Thanks for your help!
    Charlene

  9. Charlene, it could be a couple of things. The less bubbly starter could simply be out of food and need to be fed. That’s what I’d try first. Also, what temperature is your kitchen? If it’s quite warm, then the starter feeds more quickly…and is prone to run out of available food. But if it’s quite cool, that can really slow things down.

    I’d give it another day, try feeding it, and then add 1/2 t. of yeast, just to try to jumpstart things. I’d try it in that order.

    Barb

  10. Barb,
    Could I add yeast to the one without yeast? If so, how much? Also, on the 1/2 t., how much warm water do I dissolve it in?
    Thanks

  11. Charlene,

    You could add 1/2 t. yeast to the starter without yeast. Don’t worry about dissolving it. The starter has enough liquid to dissolve. See what happens. The yeast should multiply rapidly because there is so much sugar to feed on. Add the yeast the day before you plan to feed the starter with flour, sugar, and milk. If it takes a few extra days to get bubbly, don’t worry. Eventually, it should happen. Let me know how this works out for you, okay?

    Barb

  12. Hi Barb, I just put some bread in the oven about 30 minuets ago BUT ( instead of using loaf pans I used a Bunt cake pan as I cannot find my loaf pans Hubby probably threw them out!) BUT on the recipe I have it does NOT have baking POWDER on it!!!! Only Baking soda! does this mean it will NOT rise? or taste funny??? Thanks Jamie

  13. Hi, Jamie,

    I LOVE the idea of using a bundt pan instead of a loaf pan. I bet it will make a wonderful cake. I have no idea if your bread will turn out tasting okay. Would you please let us know how it works? If it’s not good, I suspect it will be definitely NOT good. If you taste it and think, well that SEEMS okay, but I’m not positive it’s as good as it’s supposed to be…then don’t worry. It’s probably just fine.

    Let us know how it works out,

    Barb

  14. Hi Barb,

    I got a starter 12 days ago and baked my first loaves, they were delicious. My recipe called for 1C flour, sugar, milk on day 5 and on day 10 1/2 cup flour, sugar, milk. It said I would have 4 bags of 1 cup each, one to keep and 3 to give away as well as some to bake with. As it turns out, all I ended up with was 3 bags, 1 to keep, 2 to give away and 1/2 cup to bake with (I measured it because it didn’t seem like enough) but the bread turned out great and it made two full size loaves. However I altered the recipe before passing it on to 1C flour, sugar, milk on day 10 because of the different versions I saw on-line and the small amount left to bake with on my original recipe.

    Hope this helps with the amount to freeze to bake bread with for those wanting to save some for baking, not passing on.

    Monique

  15. Barb,
    Its me again with some more questions! I have made this bread twice. The last time I made it I used small loaf pans.
    The bread was good but a little dry, so I used the larger loaf pan. The bread did rise but sank in the middle. It never got a nice dome top. It was flat and dry, and wet in the middle. I’m not sure what I did wrong! I have searched the Internet for some trouble shooting help but cannot find one! I am so frustrated but determined to make the perfect batch! ha. Any suggestions???
    Thanks, Charlene

  16. Hi Monique and Charlene,

    Monique, thanks for sharing your baking notes with us. How has the recipe worked, now that you’ve altered it a little?

    Charlene, there are a number of things I think you should consider. I’ve never had this recipe turn out too DRY…so that kind of surprises me. Since I really don’t have all the information, here are some questions to consider.

    1. Do you live at altitude? When we lived close to 7000 feet, I had to adjust some of my recipes for altitude. If you live up high, you might need to make some of those altitude adjustments.

    2. Are you using all-purpose flour? If you use bread flour, it will probably make a slightly dryer loaf. If you use self-rising flour, that will definitely affect the outcome. Sometimes, all-purpose flour you can buy in bulk (like 25# bags from Sams Club or Costco) are somehow different. I have no idea why, but I can’t use Sams Club all-purpose flour sold in 25# bags to bake.)

    3. Is your oven the right temperature? An oven thermometer is an inexpensive tool that can make a big difference in your baking. Just this past week I started suspecting that my oven wasn’t heating properly. Sure enough…after 30 minutes, it was still only 250° when I had it set on 350°. Turns out that the bottom element had burned out and the top element was struggling to do the whole job.

    4. If the batter is too wet, consistently, you might try adding a tablespoon or two of extra flour.

    5. Are your leavening agents fresh? Is your baking soda and baking powder sealed up tight to maintain freshness? Are the eggs you use fresh? Are they extraordinarily large eggs or especially small eggs?

    6. Are you using the right kind of pudding? Instant pudding gives this bread the right texture. Cooked pudding makes the bread turn out wrong. Are you using the right sized box of pudding? You want a large box, not the small boxes. Two small boxes do NOT equal one large box.

    7. Did you open the oven while you were baking the loaf that fell in the middle? There is a small window of time after the bread rises and before the batter “sets” when even small bumps or jiggles will make the center fall in. Occasionally I will stick the test toothpick into the center of a loaf and will watch the whole thing cave in.

    These are some initial thoughts. Anything ring a bell here?

    Barb

  17. I have a question: Does anyone know if you can start baking the friendship bread a day early? My bake day is on a Monday and I would rather do it Sunday. Does anyone know if you can? Thanks

  18. I have also baked without pudding and it taste just fine.
    I have also used a mixer as I was having large cluster of flour after baking in my bread even though I was mixing well. The bread had different texture but was very good.

  19. Hi there, just found your website after I made my first batch of this bread. Like Monique, I had a recipe that only added 1 cup of ea. flour, sugar, milk on 5th day and then on 10th day before splitting off the starters to give away. I think I had roughly a cup of starter left to work with. Adding all the other ingredients, I found it is certainly not enoug to fill two large bread pans. BUT I also kept the starter in the fridge the whole time (we live in CA and it’s hot right now)…sooo maybe that had something to do with it?

    Anyway, just wanted to let you know that I did not have instant pudding at hand and used a cup of plain yogurt instead – it worked just fine.

    Barb, I have a question: it seems to me that if you keep the starter in the fridge when you receive it and do NOT add the flour, sugar, and milk within those 10 days, you could just use the starter to bake the cake with, no? For those of you who don’t want the perpetual cake. Or just add it once and have only half the amount. The amount you need to bake is about 1 cup of starter, I believe.

    Greetings from Babette

  20. Barb,
    I have a question: My mother is diabetic and I was wondering if I could use splenda and skim milk to the recipe, and do you know of any way to make it low fat and carbs?

  21. Kelley, a good friend of mine just went thru this whole process using splenda and skim milk. She emailed me the results to let me know how her “resesarch” came out. I’ve got a completely full schedule today and tomorrow, but tomorrow evening, I”ll look up that email and post her findings. I think I remember that she was happy with the results and that things DID turn out. Look for a better answer on this question by Saturday or Sunday evening!

    Thanks for jogging my memory on this because I’ve been meaning to post the low carb variation.

    bk

  22. Hello I just baked my bread from a started given to me 10 days ago, it came out amazing. I have been told that this particular starter has been going for close to 20 years, if it’s true or not I don’t know but I loved the bread. Now, it makes 4 cups at the end (add 1 cup flour sugar and milk on days 5 and 10) 1 starter to keep, 2 to give away and I measured what was left in the bowl and it was a cup, then I added a bunch more stuff that the recipe calls for (not one of the pudding ones) and I got 2 big loaves, that me and my fiancee loved. Yay! I can’t wait to start playing with the recipe.

  23. Barb,
    I made the bread with splenda, skim milk, fat free and sugar free pudding and my mother really enjoyed it. Know one could tell the differance. I’m looking mforward to the low carb one. Thanks

  24. Hi!

    I haven’t made Amish Friendship Bread in awhile but I would like to make some and I was wondering if I made the starter can I use it to bake on the same day I made it or do I have to wait the 10 days? Thanks!

  25. i was just curious if you could send me the recipe for the sugar free recipe. I was gonna try to play around with it myself but I wasnt sure if u add the same amount of splenda as u do sugar seemings tho 1 c splenda = more than 1c sugar….if you could I’d appreciate it. thank you
    Gretchen

  26. Has anyone ever used flaxseed in their bread? I’m thinking of using some in my loaves and wanted to know if anyone has any thoughts?

  27. Kelley and Gretchen, I’m working on a post to follow up on this one to share my friend’s findings on making this a low carb/low calorie recipe.

    Deedee, I’ve never used flaxseed in my friendship bread but I often use it in the regular whole wheat or white bread that I use. I often substitute a measure of ground flax seed for the same measure of flour.

    Two things to remember about flax seed. First, it needs to be ground to get the benefit of that great flax seed oil. If you put it in bread whole, it will just go through your digestive tract unscathed. It’s great roughage, but you don’t get the health benefits of the oils. I grind my flax seed in a coffee grinder and that works perfectly.

    Second, there IS a lot of oil in flax seed, so you may want to slightly reduce whatever oil you add.

    Best,

    Barb

  28. I did measure all the batter on “baking day”, after adding the flour, sugar, and milk, and before taking out any starters. It made 6 cups, so if one takes out 4 one-cup starters, that leaves 2 cups to actually make the bread with. I am running out of other innocent bakers to pass the starters along to, so last time I just took out 2 starters and made 2 batches of bread on the same day. This time, I put my two starters in the freezer because we are going away for a few days and my little village has no battersitters I can afford. It’s a great recipe, very versatile, but I can see it becoming like the Ancient Mariner’s albatross.

  29. Is there anyway to divide the ingredients down so you don’t have so many to give away? I would like to keep one bag and bake the bread with out having to give 3 away each time. Has anyone divided it down? What would the new measurements be for the flour, sugar and milk on day 5 and day 10? Thanks!

  30. If you don’t want to give the 3 away, just throw them out. You’re not losing much. Or put a couple in the freezer for the day when you’ve lost your starter.

  31. Hi – this site is great and it provided all the info I wanted on friendship bread, but I had a suggestion. couldn’t you just use the extra “share” portions to bake extra loaves if you didn’t want to mess with finding people to take the starters? I haven’t made the friendship bread for a while, but I remember getting to a point with it before where I didn’t want a starter and nobody I knew wanted one either. It’s hard to imagine getting tired of this wonderful bread, but it does happen after you have a bag of goo sitting on your counter for a few months straight! :o) It’s some GREAT bread though!
    Bonnie

  32. Hi, Bonnie, thanks for stopping by. YOu’re absolutely right that you could just use all the starters to bake bread. Several folks have also suggested freezing the starters to use later. I know that I have grown weary….or rather, my bathroom scale has grown weary of constant friendship bread around the house. At that point, I throw a ziplock in the freezer for weeks or months later….and I use up whatever I have on hand.

    Barb

  33. I had a friend of mine play with the numbers and she came up with a way to decrease amounts so that I only have to worry about adding enough ingredients to make my bread every 10 days and have enough for one starter, which I keep for the next cycle. My recipe is the same as the one on this site, but you add the milk, flour, sugar on days 6 and 10.

    Here are the amounts: to 10 tablespoons of starter, add 10 tablespoons each of flour, sugar and milk (Day 6).

    To 26 tablespoons of starter, add 14 tablespoons each of flour, sugar and milk (Day 10).

    Remove 10 tablespoons of start to keep until next time. Go ahead and continue the recipe as listed for the remaining 1 cup of start (will make two loaves). I do use 1/2 cup applesauce for 1/2 cup of oil.

    I have made this 3 times since my friend Nicole cut down the amounts and it always works. I add more of milk, flour, and sugar if I want to have an extra starter to give away.

  34. Hello-I have a question about the type of flour I use. I grind all of my own wheat into flour to make my bread. Can you use freshly ground flour in this recipe? I know that freshly ground flour will go rancid if not refridgerated or used within a couple of days. But, I am not sure if it is okay since it is reacting in the recipe, or if it will spoil????? Thanks for any comments.

  35. Hi Caroline, thanks for the details of scaling down this recipe. That is very helpful to me and I’m sure that readers will appreciate the information you shared.

    Angie, you should not have any problem with your freshly ground flour. Yes, freshly ground flour does go rancid as a result of oxidation with the air. If it’s stirred into the starter, it will be FERMENTING but not spoiling. It shouldn’t be a problem at all and it sounds like a really great way to make this bread.

    Barb

  36. This recipe sounds like the one I am looking for however I need a recipe for the starter to go with it.

  37. Tina, the instructions are in the body of the post for this. In short, here is the information: “Simply put 1 c. flour, 1 c. sugar, 1 c. milk, and 1 T. yeast in a ziploc bag and let it sit on the counter. Call that Day 1, and you’re good to go.”

    Good Luck,

    Barb

  38. I would like to make Amish Friendship Bread using Splenda instead of sugar, may I use it in the starter also. I would like to use freshly ground whole wheat instead of white flour, would this turn out well or would it be too heavy?

    I made the bread once before using sugar and I used applesauce instead of oil and it worked real well.

  39. Vicki, using whole wheat flour shouldn’t be a problem. It will produce a different loaf, but it should turn out. I would probably try it first using half whole wheat and half white flour, just to see how that works. I don’t know about using the splenda in the starter. Give it a try and let me know how it works out for you.

    Barbara

  40. Barb and all others,

    I just wanted to thank you all for your helpful comments and answers. I’d been looking for a way to keep just one bag of starter and be able to bake 2 loaves for myself every ten days without having to hand out the 4 bags every time. I seem to have a different recipe than your’s and Caroline(who scaled hers down). I think I have the same as Marilyn Crisp, so I’ll be working with mine and I’ll try to come on here and let you know what I end up doing. Anyway, thank you all for your help!

  41. Hi, I would like to make some of the bread. I have a recipe for the starter, my question is this. What kind of flour do I use… AllPourpose or Self Rising?
    Thank you for any help you can give me. Wanda

  42. Megan, thanks for your kind words! Let us know how the bread works for you.

    Wanda, do NOT use Self-rising flour. Self-rising flour contains other ingredients besides flour….like baking powder and salt, I think. I don’t personally know what that would do the bread, but I would not use it.

    Thanks for everyon’s comments….so much help!

    Barbara

  43. Hi. I just read these comments – some great ideas!! But that last one said do NOT use self-rising flour. This was what the recipe I had said – to add self rising during sitting time and all purpose for baking time.
    The loaves have come out fantastic every time. Just wanted to add my 2 cents!!

  44. Hi, you guys really seem to know what you’re talking about! I’ve never made this bread before but I received a starter 10 days ago so today is my bake day. Over the weekend my starter bag got a little hole so I dumped the starter into another bag and lost a bit of it on the way, the general consensus seems to be that you should have 1 cup to bake with and 4 to give away so I’m wondering if I can short that by a cup (possibly add slightly less of todays flour/sugar/milk?) and still have this turn out ok? I’m not sure how dead-on you have to be to make this turn out great…

    Also, about freezing the starters, this is the first I’ve heard of that but I like the idea! So you put it in the freezer on day 1, when you take it out do you start on day 2 and still follow all the steps like you would a normal starter? Is there any limit on how long you can freeze it for?
    Thanks!!!

  45. I got this recipe a while back and was told I need to chant over the batter as I mixed it, does that fall in the “mystique” division too? My friend likes to play pranks on me, so I’m not sure if I should trust him.
    Thanks for your help!

  46. Patty, I’m glad that the self-rising flour has worked for you. I’ve never seen that in an Amish Friendship Bread recipe before. I probably won’t use that in the future, but if your recipe is working for you, keep doing it that way!

    Shannon, you should be able to adjust the amounts of flour and water that you add if you do it proportionately. I don’t have any idea how long you can freeze the starter, but if you let it go too long and it ends up going bad, just start another one!

    Bill, your comment made me laugh out loud. Can’t say I have ever heard about chanting over the batter and I have a hard time picturing that fitting into any kind of Amish culture. I would say that your friend is having some fun at your expense…or else you’re trying to have some fun at ours! Either, we’ll laugh with you.

    Barb

  47. Hi, My oven was broken, so as of yesterday I am on my THIRD rotation of keeping the starter on my counter (and trying to find people to take more starter)…UGHHH! Anyway, They came and fixed my oven today, and I am wondering… can I bake the bread from starter that is on day one? In other words, yesterday was my day 10 and I added the 1 1/2 Cups of flour, sugar and milk, so now I have 6 bags of starter that are on day one of the cycle. Can I take two cups of the starter and bake them today with the additional ingredients? Or can some be frozen?

    Thanks!

  48. Laura, you can freeze some, you can bake some off today, you can give it away, you can throw it away. The key is to do what works for you. I don’t think it will hurt anything to bake the starter that is on Day 1 in bread. It should work for you.

    Glad you got your oven fixed!

    Barbara

  49. A co-worker gave the starter and absolutely loved making the bread. It’s the first time I can actually say I baked something. Personally I don’t like baking but this was a little more than that.

    The first time I followed the recipe exactly like she gave it to me. Nothing more, nothing less. But the second time i experimented. Day 10 turned until Day 12 and it was no different. Everything turned out perfect until something went wrong with a switch and my stove stopped working. So my bread was actually baked on Day 13 and came out just fine. It is a little on the chewy side and I think that’s because it sat a little too much before baking but other than that the flavor is the same.

    I starting the process over but this time I’m going to split the ingredients for Day 6 in half and the other half on Day 10 and then bake. I’m going to try it that way because I don’t want to end up with 4 starters. i already have 3 in the freezer for more experiments that Ihave in mind. I think doing it this will work out fine because I figured that way I’ll just end with the almost 2 cups of starter that I need to bake (I measured how much was left from last time). I’ll let you know how it turns out.

    I have to admit this is a little addictive but fun. 🙂

  50. Hi, Barb!
    I’m enjoying all your Amish bread comments. I was afraid to take a starter from a friend, but decided the worst I could do is throw out the extra. But I typed “Amish Friendship Bread” in my browser and got lots of other recipes to use. Now I can make pancakes, brownies, waffles, cornbread, biscuits … all sorts of goodies. So now I make 2 loaves of bread, something extra, and have 1 cup left for my starter. I find the starter very forgiving. I’ve forgot to feed it for 2 or 3 days extra and sometimes don’t use it until day 14 as I find more time for baking on weekends. It’s been fun and very tasty!

  51. Glad to hear that no one has died from some kind of yeast/ bacterial inbalance, while baking on the wrong day! Thanks for all of the help. I am going to fire up the oven!

  52. Thanks! I adjusted my ingredients a bit and my bread turned out great! I’m still a little confused about freezing the starter, do you put it in the freezer on day 1 and then when you take it out, let it go through the 10-day process? Or do you freeze it on day 10 and then when you’re ready to bake just take it out of the freezer and bake it that day? I would love to make this for the holidays but don’t want to be baking every 10 days between now and then! Also, this is probably a more general baking question but I’m fairly new in the kitchen so thought I may be able to get an answer here, I plan on baking 2 batches of this stuff this week (so 4 loafs) if I put 4 loafs in the oven at the same time will my bake time need to be adjusted? Or will they still be done after an hour? Thanks for all the info, this is a really helpful site!

  53. Shannon, sorry I wasn’t clear enough about freezing the starter. The truth is that it probably doesn’t matter all THAT much when you freeze it. Personally, I would freeze it after the end of the process (when I’d hand out starters to my friends, I would stash an extra in the freezer.) Then I would take it out of the freezer and start it on Day 1 when I was ready to make more bread. Does that help?

    Thanks everyone for the great comments!

    Barb

  54. My daughter brought home a starter from school. She added the day six 1 cup flour, sugar, milk.

    I did not know and miscounted the days. The next day I added the 1 cup flour, sugar and milk.

    Can we still use this starter?

  55. I didn’t read all the comments so I’m not sure if I’m repeating what someone else has said. If you only want enough starter for 1 batch each time, feed it 1/4 cup of sugar, flour and milk each time. It will give enough to make the recipe and some to start again. Also, I do use a metal whisk when feeding my starter and have noticed no change to the starter.

  56. Wanted to add another comment. ;o) I keep my starter in a large margarine container. The bag always leaked for me. I just “shake” the container instead of squeezing the bag. When I bake the bread, I wash the margarine container to re-do the starter.

  57. Hi Kim,
    Yes, this starter is remarkably forgiving. I think the main thing is to get that fermentation/sourdough process going well, and it really won’t make a huge difference if you goof on the day count.

    Laura

  58. Susan, Thank you for chiming in–I’m sure there are a LOT of people who will find it very helpful to know how to do just enough for your own batch, without “blessing” 10 of your friends each time you make it. 🙂

    I haven’t used the container idea with the Amish friendship bread, but I use a big ice cream bucket for my sourdough starter, and find it to be much easier to keep it tidy that way.

    Thanks,
    Laura

  59. Somewhere I have read a variation on the Friendship Bread that would make it Gingerbread. Does anyone have that recipe?

  60. Bonnie, here’s a gingerbread one that I found, the only thing is I had to go look around at other gingerbread recipes to fiqure out the spices, so not sure how this works. The gingerbread recipe I found for the Amish Friendship Bread only said this: Substitute 2 TB of molasses for equal amount of sugar, add spices. So here’s the spices I came up with: 1 tsp ground ginger, 2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground cloves. Good luck!!

  61. Hi everyone,

    I am having so much fun experimenting with this thing. So what I did was on the 6th Day I added 1/2 cup each of sugar, milk, and flour and let it sit there. I did squeeze the bag everyday but to be honest I sorta lost count of the umber of days. I think that it was like a 14 Day process this time. Anyways I added all the ingredients for Baking Day and separated the mixture in half. In one I mixed in Banana Cream Instant Pudding; the girls told me it tasted fantastic. They really liked it. I can’t say anything about it because I’m allergic to bananas. Now for the other half, I mixed in a Chocolate Instant Pudding. Oh man is it good. If you are a chocoholic like me or even simple just like chocolate, you must try this. It’s very, very good.

    Since my favorite holiday is only a couple of weeks away and yes I’m talking about Thanksgiving. I am going to make a pumpkin version. All I have to do now is find Pumpkin Instant Pudding. I went on the Jell-O website and saw that they do make one that is only sold seasonally. So I hope they sell it where I live. I’ll let you all know how it turns out.

    Sandra

  62. I wonder if you could use canned pumpkin in place of at least part if not all of the applesauce and/or maybe part of the milk? That is, if you can’t find the pumpkin pudding. Also, I’ve made the chocolate before, but added mini chocolate chips in the batter and then sprinkled more chips on top the last couple minutes of baking – YUM! Lemon is quite good too!

  63. I just made one batch using 2 bananas (1/2 cup), 1/4 cup canola oil, 3 eggs, 2 C flour, 1 C sugar, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, & the starter (I had 1 cup left after dividing it). Baked this at 350 for 40 minutes. One in a glass loaf pan, the other in a stoneware pan. the stoneware pan took an additional few minutes (5). I then took another cup of the starter and followed the same recipe except I substituted 1 cup canned pumpkin. Texture seems a little coarser, but all in all very good. I am taking a loaf of each to Sunday School in the morning. (Oh and for the pumpkin, both loaves came out at the same time, but I had switched sides when I put the pans in this time) I really need to get a second stoneware pan. Much prefer it. I think I would like to try lemon poppyseed. I didn’t use any pudding in either recipe, but did add tsp vanilla extract to banana. I’m nut really sure what the pudding does except add flavor. Maybe try box lemon pudding, and poppy seeds, and tsp lemon extract.

  64. To the question on the applesauce – pumpkin substitution, some of the WW recipes I have for WW friendly cakemixes call for using either pumpkin OR applesauce. The can be substituted equally. And both are great for replacing oils and even eggs.

  65. I was sick and missed day 6 to feed it-my question is will it still work to feed it on day 8? My 8 year old kept mushing the bag since it was her job but I did not look at the recipe for a few days. Did I ruin it or will it still work? thanks

  66. Sandra, another suggestion, if you can’t find pumpkin pudding mix is to try butterscotch pudding mix. With the pumpkin pie spices, it will still taste like pumpkin bread.

    Julie, I love the idea of eliminating the pudding mix altogether from this recipe. Suddenly, it’s a very inexpensive treat to make. As we head into the holiday season, I’m always trying to stash extra loaves of homemade sweetbread in the freezer to hand out as gifts. Thanks for experimenting with this!

    Cindy, not to worry….your starter will be just fine. Carry on. It’s very forgiving.

    Thank you so much, Bonnie and Brenda for helping each other out!

    Barb

  67. Hi Barb,

    I haven’t read through every single question/comment, but I did read what you wrote at the top. I’ve never heard of Amish Friendship Bread until one of my student’s parents gave it to me last week. I had it on my counter for four days and my husband accidentally put it in the fridge on day 5. I was furious with him. I took it out and wanted to throw it away. But from what you said, I can just continue with the process of mushing the bag? I was really looking forward to making this bread.

    Thanks!

  68. DW,
    yes! Mush away! Unless the starter is some icky color, carry on. Actually, putting this in the fridge for a few days is one way of just delaying the action. (For example, if you are going out of town for Thanksgiving, you can stick the starter in the fridge and pick up where you left off when you get home.) This is a VERY forgiving recipe, so don’t feel that you ruin the whole thing if you don’t get all the days exact.

    Laura and Barb

  69. Hello, I’ve been making friendship on and off for 12 years. Here are a few things I have learned:

    1. I substitute Applesauce all the time at a 2/3 to 1/3 oil all the time. No worries.

    2. As a math teacher I did the Math for reducing, as I never pass out starters. instead of 1 cup of Milk, sugar and Flour use 1/3, and them on day 10 feed again and pull out 1 cup for your next go around. Perfect.

    3. I am having some trouble with the newest batch out of Mississippi. It’s not cooking at the required 325 for 60 min, I bumped it to 350 for 60 min and the ends are getting dry. Any suggestions?? Thanks for the website.

  70. Hi Carla,

    Where did you live before Mississippi? When we lived at 6800 ft elev. in CO I needed to cut back on the baking powder and soda and sugar to account for the altitude. If you’re coming from high altitude, you might want to stir in an extra T. of flour and 1/4 t. more baking powder as an experiment. Also, have you tried baking it at 350° for 50 minutes instead of the full 60?

    I think this is just going to take some trial and error to find the right solution….Let us know how it goes.

    Barb

  71. I would like to freeze some starters from my batch. I read that it is okay to freeze. How do I prepare to start the 10 days cycle once I remove the starter from the freezer? I also have a problem with my bread sinking in the middle every time I cook the bread. The only difference I noticed on the recipe is that I have been using vegetable oil in place of canola oil. Would this cause the bread to sink?

    Thanks for the advise and love your website.
    Crystal

  72. I have baked the bread and have had the 3 starters out on my counter for a week without doing anything. Are they still ok to give away or are they bad? How long wil they last.

  73. I began making this bread about 7 years ago and carried on for sometime. At that time I found a site on the internet with the starter recipe and several variations from someone named Pam. I printed these and tried them all. They were wonderful! She had even made a chart for the ingredients needed to make up to ten loaves at one time and basically she used one cup of starter for every two loaves. So if on bake day, you do not want to find someone to give the starter to, you can use all but your “keeper” starter and make many loaves. You can freeze the loaves, give them away, or eat them all, but that carries a great warning!

    Now years later my sister “gifted” me with a bag of starter and what do I do… start baking. But please understand, I have lost about 35- 40 lbs. and do not want to gain it back. My husband is now pre-diabetic so… I just made my first loaves using Splenda Brown sugar which is half the sugar of regular brown sugar. You can also use white sugar, but I like the flavor of brown sugar. Next I’ll try it using Splenda baking sugar and just regular Splenda. I also use sugar free pudding. My loaves taste fine. They are a bit dry, but that could be because I left them in a little long and I only had a small package of pudding mix. But still good!

    I’ll have to take a starter and see what happens with Baking Splenda in the starter. The baking splenda still has some sugar.

    As others have said this is a fairly forgiving bread and starter.

  74. Well, here it comes again the baking frenzy before Christmas. Your blog is fun, I forgot that I had 6 starters in the freezer and I loved all the comments on how to change this to a healthier recipie as both myself and my husband love carbs and well this bread is just to good to give away! Since they have been in the freezer for a year LOL I’ll let you know if they rise or not, I bet they will.

  75. I love all the ideas for variations on this recipe! I think I might try the banana version this time around, one question though, do you still add the cinnamon to these variations? Or does it go from being a cinnamon-sugar bread to being a banana bread instead?
    Thanks!

  76. Crystal, using either vegetable or canola oil is fine. It should make a difference in how it bakes. YOu might try adding a tablespoon or two of flour to your batter and see if that helps with that Central Cave-in problem.

    John, if the starters have been on the counter for a week without feeding, you should try feeding them just to make sure they haven’t died. They’re probably fine, but it would be kinder to the people you will be gifting with those starters.

    Teresa, I’m so pleased to hear that your adjustments to splenda have turned out well!

    Mary, I’m betting that if you feed those year-old starters, they’ll start to grow!

    Shannon, whether or not you add cinnamon to the other flavors of bread is totally up to you. I would probably not add cinnamon to banana flavored bread. I have experimented, in the distant past, with pistachio pudding and almond extract and THAT turned out really yummy….although a trifle odd looking because it was quite green. But if you LOVE cinnamon, then add it to every flavor!

    Barb

  77. Hi Barb,
    I just found out about Amish Friendship Bread last week when a co-worker brought in a pile of starter bags. I’m on day 10 (getting ready to bake for the first time) and was already feeling overwhelmed by the whole thing until I did a bit of research online. I’m wondering what role does the instant vanilla pudding play in the recipe? Is it flavor or is it important to the chemistry of the bread? I’d rather not use it if possible.

    I saw this recipe on cooks.com and it has vanilla extract, no pudding.

    1 cup Amish Friendship Bread Starter
    2/3 cup oil
    3 eggs
    2 cup flour
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 teaspoons baking soda
    1/2 teaspoons salt
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
    1 cup sugar

    Thanks, Lynn

  78. Lynn, I know that the pudding affects the texture. I think it’s certainly worth trying WITHOUT the pudding simply because the pudding adds extra cost. It would be interesting to try it both ways and then decide which one you prefer. Thanks for stopping by!

    Barb

  79. Lynn, I was talking to a friend just this past weekend and she had never seen the recipe with pudding. She said she has never used pudding and she still loves it. I use pudding, jello, applesauce… whatever comes to the imagination.

    I also recently made several loaves with pistachio pudding, coconut, small can of drained crushed pineapples and marchino cherries on top. Looks very festive! when my youngest daughter saw me making it she said “Yuck! Mom, Green?? nobody will like that. I cut a loaf fresh from the oven and it is her favorite. She asked me to bake it for all seven of her teachers! Only I added coconut flavoring rather than vanilla, kept the cinnamon. Now it is my favorite variation! Her science teacher is asking for starter.

    My husband even asked me to try Peach. I used a small box of peach jello (should have used 2) and drained sliced cling peaches. It was ok. When I make it again I’ll use 2 small boxes of peach jello and fresh peaches.

    When feeding my starter I use white sugar, but when making my bread I use Splenda and sugar free puddings.

  80. I have had starters given to me several times in the past, and have made starters once or twice myself. Like many others, I don’t always have enough willing recipients of starters, though I have many willing recipients of bread. I have usually just fed the starter as directed, then taken out 1 cup to keep and doubled the bread recipe with the rest of the starter. It has always worked fine. I do reduce the amount of baking powder to 1 1/4 t. (mine called for 2 t.), and the soda to 3/4 t. (it called for 1 t.) because I had the center-cave-in problem. I live at a high altitude, and reducing the leavening helped solve that. I quickly got tired of having a bag on my counter, so I have kept it in a cute Rubbermaid-type bowl ever since. I just stir it everyday instead of squeezing the bag.
    I had not made the bread for years, then a neighbor gave me a start 20 days ago – that’s when I discovered your fun blog! I was looking for a recipe for gingerbread. Bonnie asked about it awhile back, and today I got it just right. It made my house smell like Christmas, and it tastes great! So here’s my recipe for Pumpkin Gingerbread:
    4 eggs 2 t. ginger
    1 c. oil 1 t. cloves
    1 c. pumpkin 2 1/2 t. baking powder
    1 1/3 c. molasses 1 1/2 t. baking soda
    2/3 c. sugar 2 t. salt
    2 t. cinnamon 4 c. flour
    I measured out 2 c. of starter to keep, then used the rest with this recipe. If you wanted less, you could take out the regular amount, then 1/2 the recipe. I greased my pans, but didn’t sugar them. (I meant to flour them, but forgot – they came out OK, though.) I made 8 mini loaf pans (5 1/2″x3″x2″)and baked them at 325 for 37 minutes, then baked an 8″ square pan for 30 minutes. I am going to give away the little ones for Christmas, and let my kids have the other one for snack when they come home from school. I hope you like it, Bonnie!

  81. Oh! I forgot to say that I, being the cheap-skate that I am, haven’t made it with pudding very many times. I found a recipe early on that left out the pudding and 1/2 c. milk, and I have made it that way ever since.

  82. What a fabulous site! I’ve been searching the web for hours now for “the best” recipe and hints on making this Amish Friendship Bread. I want to start it off among my group of friends. I’ve found loads of recipes and tips, but this is by far the most sensible, logical and well informed page I’ve found so far. So many thanks!

    I wonder though, now that all the myths have been debunked and wonderfully useful tips added, if anyone has suggestions on the ideal “instructions” to give out with bags of starter? I’m trying to put together my own, to give to friends, and want to make sure that I fully inform them, without making them feel overwhelmed or burdened.

    Any suggestions? Barb, what would you give out to Amish Friendship Bread virgins to get them started?

  83. I have just put my first loaves of AFB in the oven. Really looking foward to it. My question tho, is this…if I put my starter in the fridge and want to wait a few weeks before baking with it, providing it doesn’t go bad…Is the day you pull it out of the fridge Day 2? Thanks.

  84. Hi Theresa,
    Yes, I’d treat the first day you pull it out of the fridge as day 2. You do want some days of unrefrigerated fermenting/aging. I have found this recipe to be VERY forgiving, so take it out of the fridge and see what happens. I think you’ll be pleased with the results. Merry Christmas!

    Laura and Barb

  85. Hi Frank, oh yes, I’ve frozen the bread often. I wrap it tightly in foil and then put it in a ziplock bag. The reason for the foil is so that I can pop it in the oven and heat it up to serve. It’s very important for ME not to wrap it in plastic first and then in foil. The reason I can’t do that is that I have been known to put the foil-wrapped loaf directly in the oven without checking for plastic wrap first. That doesn’t turn out so well…..:(

    Barb

  86. I have been baking the amish friendship bread for about a year now. My mom accidentally baked off our batch so I had to start our batter over, but since then I haven’t been getting good collor to my bread. It tastes good, but the popyseed bread will be more of a brown tan a yellow like before. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong. Also the recipe I’m using I add the flour, sugar, and milk only on day 6, but it’s 1 1/2 cups of each. Please help!
    Vicki

  87. hello i been getting your Amish friendship bread mixes and my sister is dibet. if you have one could you please send it to me…thanks Louella

  88. Louella, I’m afraid that perhaps you’re mistaking us for someone else. There is a business by the same name that our blog has. If you look them up in your yellowpages, online or on hard copy, you should find a listing for them. I”m sorry we can’t help by sending you bread mixes!

    Barbara

  89. Am I reading it correctly that the starter requires 1 TABLEspoon of yeast & not one package? I saw on another site that they said to put the whole package in the starter.

    I’m getting ready to have my Girl Scout troop of 11 girls make the starter & then pass on to their friends/family. So I definitely need to make sure I have the recipe correct!

  90. Stephanie, a packet of yeast IS pretty much a tablespoon. I believe that the precise measurement is a little more or a little less, but for general purposes, you can do a packet or a T. of yeast.

    One thing about yeast is that it GROWS. So if you only put a teaspoon of yeast in, after a little while, you’ll have a fermenting brew. You can jumpstart something with more yeast, but you might end up with a yeasty flavor. The other thing about yeast is that most kitchens are filled with WILD yeast. For this reason, if you can take an extra week to grow that initial starter, you can do it without adding commercial yeast at all!

    Good luck to all your Girl Scouts on this recipe,

    Barbara

  91. I’ve made the bread with pudding for several years and there is nothing better on the planet! My grandkids love it as an afternoon snack and beg me to make it so for the past year I have kept it up. I became ill a few months ago and was in the hospital and not able to keep everything going and lost my last batch of starter. Just today began a fresh starter so in ten days will bake again. My entire family loves this stuff! Thanks for the hints and tips and information about this wonderful bread.

  92. I read all the comments and didn’t find anything about my question. I would like to try making the bread with bran or oats, how much oats or bran can I substitute for the flour? We are dieting, but love the bread for breakfast, I would just like to make it healthier.

  93. Hi, I found your site today and I had a few questions/comments on the bread. A nagging question I have is …if the starter batter has yeast, why the need for the baking powder and soda? Makes me question the need for the starter altogether. The bread recipe is really no different than the average “from scratch” quick bread such as banana. Any thoughts? I also plan to use the some of the starter frozen on day 10 by thawing and baking bread with it, not starting the process over but baking the day I thaw the starter. Does that work? Thanks for the great website! Juliet Locke

  94. Hi Sarah,
    I checked on the Quaker Oatmeal website, and they say you can substitute oats for up to 1/3 of the flour in a recipe. So why don’t you try that and let us know how it works–that would be a great tip to add to our communal knowledge. Start with substituting on a 1:1 basis: if the recipe calls for 3 cups of flour, make it 1 c. oats and 2 c. flour. I would bet that the same general principle might hold for substituting bran, as well.

    What about you other Amish Friendship Bread people? Has anyone already tried this? Do you have any hot tips for Sarah?

    Laura

  95. Juliet,
    Actually, the bread is more like a sourdough recipe. There is a unique tang to the batter of AFB that comes from the starter, and you can’t get it without allowing the starter to age. The yeast in the starter provides SOME leavening, but its purpose is more to keep the batter “alive”–the yeast continues to consume the flour and ferment. Thus, you really do need the other leavening agents.

    As for baking the bread from starter that just came from the freezer, that’ll work just fine.

    Yours,
    Laura

  96. Sarah,

    Adding to what Laura told you….

    I’m always pushing bran and whole grains into muffins and sweet breads. I have to admit that I haven’t done this with AFB, but there’s no reason you can’t. What I have found through experience is that it takes about 1 1/3 to 1 1/2 c. wheat bran to replace a cup of flour. This is due to the fact that wheat bran doesn’t really absorb moisture like flour does. The texture also makes it NOT a 1:1 substitution. Oatmeal may be different. I haven’t tried it with oatmeal. Sometimes I add 1/2 c. wheat bran without reducing the flour at all. Oat bran behaves a little differently and you will use less oat bran than wheat bran.

    I often substitute ground flax seed. I grind it in an old coffee grinder. It ends up the texture of flour. THIS I do substitute one to one. If I do more than a cup of flax, I will reduce the oil in the recipe a tablespoon or two because flax has a LOT of oil in it.

    One last suggestion for incorporating more fiber…..if you doing any juicing at all, you often end up with a lot of dry pulp after you’ve extracted the juice. If you clean the fruit/veggies carefully before you juice, the pulp is perfectly acceptable for human consumption. I frequently stir in the pulp from carrots or apples when I’m making bran muffins. I can’t begin to describe what great muffins this makes!

    Let us know what works for you.

    Barb

  97. Thanks everyone for the great ideas on adding fiber to AFB. I will try the oats first, I think, as I have those on hand, and let everyone know how that works out. Next I will try the wheat bran, and give feedback on this as well. Yeah, how cool!

  98. I just wanted to thank everyone for the awesome suggestions you have all made. I ran out of starter a little less then a year ago and have been waiting very impaitently for someone to have a starter they needed to give out but finally decided to make my own. This site is wonderful. I have a starter on my counter right now and hopefully it will turn out fine when I bake it in about 6 days. Also I wanted to mention that I am using unbleached wheat flour instead of the white flour. I am also hoping to use the splenda and sugar free pudding next time. I have read all the comments. Does anyone know the correct substitution for using Splenda instead of sugar? Do you have to use a special kind of Splenda? Also for making the bread without having 3 or 4 starters someone said use 1/4 sugar, flour, milk instead of 1 cup. Does that apply to day 6 and day 10 before you would take out the extra 3 cups for friends and then you just take out 1 cup for yourself and then follow your recipie? Thank you so much everyone for your help and sorry my comment/questions are so long.

  99. I wanted to thank everyone who has left feedback about the Friendship Bread. I had let my run out about a year ago and could not wait any longer to hope someone would have an extra starter so I started my own. I have seen a lot of comments about making the bread less fattening. The starter I just started I am using unbleached flour instead of white. It should still turn out ok though right? Also I love the idea of using skim milk, sugarfree pudding, and Splenda instead of regular sugar but does anyone know the amounts of Splenda? I am also going to try and do the 1/3 flour milk sugar combination so I don’t have to give the starters away because people just don’t want the “work”. I will let everyone know how it turns out.

  100. I wanted to thank everyone who has left feedback about the Friendship Bread. I had let my run out about a year ago and could not wait any longer to hope someone would have an extra starter so I started my own. I have seen a lot of comments about making the bread less fattening. The starter I just started I am using unbleached flour instead of white. It should still turn out ok though right? Also I love the idea of using skim milk, sugarfree pudding, and Splenda instead of regular sugar but does anyone know the amounts of Splenda? I am also going to try and do the 1/3 flour milk sugar combination so I don’t have to give the starters away because people just don’t want the “work”. I will let everyone know how it turns out.

  101. Thank you all for all the information. I received a starter about 11 days ago and baked 2 loaves yesterday. The original recipe states that the starter can be started just with 1/3 c of milk,flour, and sugar. no yeast. So I followed the recipe and it was dry. Tasted good but just dry. So I read your recipes and noticed that my recipe didn’t have 1/2 cup of milk in it (not the starter part but the bread recipes itself). I’m hoping in 9 days to try again and with milk. So what does everyone think, was my bread dry because my starter didn’t have yeast or because it was missing the milk? I really don’t want to go through this for a bad piece of bread in the end….I need it to be good ….okay my waist line doesn’t. LOL

  102. Hi!
    I am new to the whole amish friendship bread thing! I received 2 bags of “white gooey stuff” a 6 days ago. We just added our 1st round of flour/sugar/milk to each bag and have mashed the bags until really well mixed. So far, so good. This is really exciting. My question is this, when I get to day 10, and I start my “three bags” per bag, to give away, do i add yeast to the individual bags, or is the yeast added ONLY when the starter is started fresh … with no old starter used. Thanks for clearing this up!
    Renee

  103. I really enjoyed reading this comments and all. I have just one question to ask, i’m fairly good at baking and cooking as i’ve been at this since I was about 3 years old (so for a long time since i’m in my mid 20’s). My question is this, I’m lactose intolerant, so I was wondering if using the Lactose free milk, would it harm this in anyway or should I just not worrie about using different milk and tread on with this. I plan to start fresh from a fresh starter as well. Any tips would be great, Thanks!

  104. Brenda, Thank you for the Gingerbread Recipe I’m excited to try it. I do have a question though before I make the recipe.

    Brenda Said: “The gingerbread recipe I found for the Amish Friendship Bread only said this: Substitute 2 TB of molasses for equal amount of sugar.”

    Could someone be more specific regarding the “2TB of molasses for equal amount of sugar” What does that mean? Do I add 2 TB of molasses for every 2 TB of sugar I use?

    My suggestions for Healthy Substitutes:

    Use Rice or Soy milk, this will reduce the Fat content (the bread turns out just the same as regular milk)

    Use Egg Beaters which are cholesterol-free Instead of Real Eggs. 1 serving of Egg Beaters is also about 1/2 the calories as an equal serving of a real egg. (the bread turns out just the same as real eggs)

    Thanks for everyones input. This site is a great resource for anyone who is addicted to the Amish Starter.

  105. I got my starter batch and followed the 10 day process, then baked my two loaves. Delicious!!!
    Well, I have no one to give my next batches to, so my questions are: Do I leave them on the counter and start the 10 day process over again? Or do I just bake them now (day 1) to avoid spoiling. What day are the bags considered?

  106. I made friendship bread for the first time today. I followed the directions as I was supposed to, but the batter was very lumpy when I got it out of my ziplock bag to add all the other ingredients to bake. What did I do wrong?

  107. Greetings…
    Just made my first bread – delicious!
    2 questions:
    Has anyone sized this to allow for less to give away? Neither I nor my circle of friends can afford to bake this often…I would like an amount that gives me just one batch of the starter after I am done baking…

    Can the starter be frozen? (I know – that is probably blaspheme!!)

    Thanks all.

  108. I love your site.How long once you bak e Amish friendship bread can you leave it in the fridge?Also how long can you freeze the starter for?Thanks so much for all the good advice.

  109. We have been making this for years. There is always an issue with whether or not to use a small or a large pudding mix. Our recipe calls for small. Others call for large. We prefer the small. We like to measure out our 1 1/2 cups of starter before we dilute with fresh ingredients and divide. It has a bit more flavor and tang.

  110. Hi all,
    Wow! Has this been a fun site & topic to explore or what?! I’ve been lurking off & on now for the past couple of weeks. But now I’ve finally decided to take the plunge & join in on the fun!! 🙂

    My very 1st encounter w/AFB starter was way back in 1996 (did it for several months & then quit…got too blasted hot to bake in SoCal in the summer with no AC), then I started it back up briefly in 1999 (having a baby w/a difficult pregnancy kind of put the cahbosh on my baking sadly). I have been looking & looking for SOMEONE to give me a starter ever since & lo & behold I received one about a month ago & now I’m a happy camper once again! LOL

    My 1st go-around w/AFB back in ’96 I had run out of friends to give the starter to, so I ended up sending mini-loaves along w/my hubby to his jobsite & he ended up selling them for $5 a mini-loaf!! They’d eat the whole loaf for lunch along w/a quart of milk or a cup of coffee bought at the local 7-11! lol It got quite profitable & they looked forward to my 10th day of baking that’s for sure! I also had come up w/quite a few of my own variations:
    ~ Blueberry Bread (add 1/2-3/4 cup fresh or frozen, thawed blueberries to original recipe WITH lg box vanilla pudding mix)
    ~ Apple Bread (sub 3/4 cup of UNsweetened applesauce for the oil & add only 1/4 cup oil; add 1/2-3/4 cup finely chopped apples with skins)
    ~ Banana (optional Nut) Bread (sub 3/4 cup banana puree & add 1/4 cup oil; add 1/2 chopped nuts–prefer Pecans–which are optional)
    ~ Pumpkin (optional Nut) Bread (sub 1/2 the 1 cup oil with 1/2 cup pumpkin puree; along w/cinnamon in original recipe add 1/2 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp cloves, & a pinch of nutmeg; add 1/2 chopped nuts–prefer Pecans–which are optional)
    ~ Choco-Chocolate Chip CAKE (sub chocolate pudding mix for vanilla, omit cinnamon, add 3/4 cup Ghiradelli 60% cocoa bittersweet chocolate chips to batter & bake in oiled & plain sugared bundt stoneware pan @350° for 45 mins. You can “Mexican’ize” this recipe by leaving the cinnamon in the original recipe & dusting the inside of the bundt pan with cinnamon sugar. Also, a quick glaze for your slightly cooled cake can be made by combining 1 cup frozen thawed whipped topping like Cool Whip & 1/2 cup chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl; nuke on high for 30-45 seconds or until melted; do NOT over nuke it; just stir until all the chips are melted & then pour immediately over top of cake letting it drizzle down the sides.)

    Here are a few more things I’ve discovered over the years as well:
    Baking Variations–Bake…
    MUFFINS @ 325° for 1/2 hour
    FLUTED/BUNDT PAN @ 350° for approx 45-50 minutes
    MINI-LOAVES @ 325° for 45 minutes

    Btw, thanks for the Gingerbread recipe as well as the Pistachio one!! Can’t wait to try those out!

    Also, I have an actual hard copy manilla file folder that I started back in 1999 w/print outs from websites (most of which are no longer in existence today unfortunately). In rereading them just recently I discovered a biscuit recipe which is exactly the one that’s been shared over on Armchair.com recently. Well, I went & gave it a try with disastrous results. It was just WAY too gooey. Any help there on how to make an AFB starter BISCUIT recipe? I would LOVE to have a decent AFB biscuit recipe!! Thanks in advance for any help there!

    Also, I couldn’t help but comment that I’ve ALWAYS used all-purpose flour from both Sam’s Club AND Costco in the 25lbs bag & have had absolutely no prob with it whatsoever (I leave only a tupperware canister filled w/flour on my countertop with the rest being stored in a tall kitchen trash bag in my upright freezer outside in the garage).

    Speaking of flour….one thing I’ve learned over the years whenever you’re working w/a recipe that calls for dry & wet ingredients GENERALLY it works best to combine them separately until the end where you gradually add them together. I usually whisk the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, spices, baking soda/powder, salt) together before I add them to the wet ingredients. This will generally eliminate your clumping problems as well any “spice pockets”. In fact, upon my “starter feeding days” I will whisk together my flour & sugar in a small bowl, add the milk to my starter 1st then add my flour/sugar mixture last. Either the flour coats the sugar crystals or the sugar coats the flour, but whatever the case, they work in tandem keeping each other inline & spaced out to avoid clumping!! lol

    Also, I heard you can add a cup of your starter to pancake/waffle mix. Can’t WAIT to try that out as well.

    By the way, on Day 5 I only add 1/2 cup of each to my starter: flour, sugar, milk. Then on Bake Day/Day 10, I’ll add 1 cup of each of the above & then separate. I will bake TWO batches using 1 cup of starter for each recipe, save 1, & only give one away. This way I’m not going through my friend’s list too fast! lol Although I AM tempted to cut back my Day 10 rations to only 1/c cup measurements & see what I’ll end up with after I run out of friends.

    Well gotta scoot on outta here. Lord knows I’ve talked way too much for my 1st time! lol Will check back often. Thanks for all the fab tips & LOVED the debunking of the myth of using of metal utensils to stir the starter with. Psst! I now use a metal whisk to stir the recipe with… & I also don’t worry if I’ve missed a Feed Day or Bake Day thanks to you all!! So I’m proof positive that you really CAN teach an old dog new tricks! lol

    Blessings,
    ~Marian~

  111. I read threw most of the comments above, hopefully I didn’t miss the answer to this question-

    I got the starter, and my day 10 is next wed. I work long hours, and would much rather bake on the weekend. Can I bake it this Sunday (that would be
    Day 7). Has anyone baked that early?
    If so, would it require a modification of the feeding ingredients?
    thanks.

  112. Hi Ryenne,
    Because the key part of this recipe is the sourdough process, I’d probably wait until NEXT weekend (i.e. day 13 or 14) rather than do it earlier. It’s not going to harm the recipe to sit a bit longer. However, there is also nothing wrong with doing it on day 7–it may have a little less of that extra-whatever-it-is, but it won’t be a failure.

    LB

  113. hi:) i’m not sure if this is answered already, i looked through the posts but did not see it. I forgot to feed my starter on day 5, it ended up being on day 9. so my question is, do i go ahead and bake it on day 10 or do I need to wait a few days?

  114. Hi, I tried to read through but did not see the answer. Can I freeze AFB on day 10 before feeding it? so I can take it out, let it thaw then feed it and cook it the same day?? Thanks!

  115. I finally made some batches of Amish Friendship Bread and was I so excited to try the Chocolate. I used devils food pudding, dutch cocoa, and special dark chips. After cooling off I cut into the cake and the bottom 1/3 portion was green, does anyone know why?

  116. One more thing, I forgot to add starter to a batch of blueberry nut cake…What happens without the starter.

  117. Lori,
    I have no earthly idea why your AFB would be green–wild! My boys would think that was either fantastic and exciting, or too gross to even be in the same room. 🙂

    I’m guessing that without the starter, your blueberry nut cake will be fine, just a bit more tame, without that extra tang that the starter adds. Please let us know how it turned out.

    Laura

  118. Hey, has anyone ever made PIZZA DOUGH using the starter? Just curious, especially since I was successful making Sourdough-Style Amish Buttermilk Biscuits last go around with my starter. The thought popped into my head while I was kneading the biscuit dough if I could make a Pizza Dough out of this stuff, thus creating yet ANOTHER use for my starter. With the hot months of summer just around the corner I thought this would be cool to add to my pizza on the grill repertoire.

    Btw, I followed a from-scratch recipe for Amish Pancakes last go around that were to-die-for. The only thing I did different in the recipe itself was to substitute Buttermilk in place of the milk. WOW!! Were they big & FLUFFY & oh-so-filling, too. It took only 2 of these puppies to fill me up.

    Call me selfish but I’ve got it down to the point where I’m not even sharing the starter anymore (but then again I don’t have too many of my friends left to give the starter to). With a half cup of each of the 3 feeder ingredients added to my 1 cup of starter on Day 5, when Day 10 rolls around I add 1 cup of each of the feeder ingredients. I use up 3 cups of my 4 cups of starter from Day 10 in misc recipes I’ve discovered recently, so I end up with just 1 cup of starter to start all over again.

    Ok, I promised myself I wouldn’t be so long-winded this time…LOL…so back on point:

    Amish PIZZA DOUGH recipes anyone?

    Many thanks in advance,
    Marian

  119. Marian,
    I’m pretty sure that using AFB starter to make pizza dough has been banned in at least 16 states.

    BUT! If you decide to give it a try, you know where we are, and you know that we’re all agog to hear how it turns out.

    😀
    Laura and Barb

  120. Pingback: Amish Friendship Bread, Part 2 « My Sister’s Kitchen

  121. This comment thread has gotten extremely long. Since I have a slow-ish computer and a slow-ish connection, I’m having trouble getting it to load sometimes. Therefore, we are closing comments on this post. Because you all have contributed such great ideas and creative variations on AFB, we definitely won’t delete the comments! There is a new, Part Two post on Amish Friendship Bread that we would like to invite you to check out: http://mysisterskitchen.wordpress.com/2008/05/15/amish-friendship-bread-part-2/

    The comments on the new post ARE open, so please feel free to post there.

    Thanks,

    Barb and Laura

  122. Pingback: the good old days » Blog Archive » “Amish” friendship bread

  123. Pingback: Starter, Anyone? « Cooking Llama

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  126. Pingback: Healthy oat muffins made with Amish friendship bread starter – Gardenwife's Plot

  127. Pingback: We Made Amish Friendship Bread!

  128. TIPS FOR USING SPLENDA (Sucralose)

    Step 1
    Replace the white sugar in your baking recipes with half the amount of sucralose. For instance, if your baking recipe calls for 2 cups of sugar, substitute 1 cup of sucralose.

    Step 2
    Cut the amount of sugar in your frosting, caramel, fudge or candy recipes by 25 percent. Replace the 25 percent with sucralose. For a candy recipe that calls for 2 cups of sugar, add only 1 1/2 cups. Replace the other 1/2 cup with 1/2 cup of sucralose.

    Step 3
    Adjust the amount of extract you use in your baking recipes when using sucralose. Increase the amount of extract by 1 tsp. for every 1 cup of sucralose.
    Step 4

    Check your recipe earlier than you normally would when cooking with sucralose. Set your baking timer seven to 10 minutes earlier for cakes and three to five minutes earlier when baking quick breads, cookies or any type of brownie.

    Step 5
    Mist your pies and quick breads with a light layer of cooking spray. Sucralose does not brown in the same manner as regular sugar. Spraying your recipe items with the cooking spray will help give them a golden brown glow.

    Step 6
    Substitute equal amounts of sucralose for sugar in your morning coffee and other beverages. Since 1 tsp. of sucralose equals 1 tsp. sugar, how much you use is a matter of taste.

    ********MOST IMPORTANT********
    Replace only the white sugar in your baking recipes with sucralose. In other words, if your cookie recipe calls for 1 cup of white sugar and 1/2 cup of brown sugar, add the brown sugar to your recipe and 1/2 cup of sucralose. Keep in mind that sucralose has a different consistency than ordinary granulated sugar. Often your creams will not appear as smooth as they would if made with ordinary sugar. This is completely normal and will not affect the taste of your recipe.

    Do not substitute all of the granulated sugar in your baking with sucralose if your recipe calls for yeast. Unlike sugar, sucralose does not activate yeast. Leave at least 2 tbsp. of granulated sugar in your recipe for every 1 packet of yeast.

    I would personally recommend using sugar for the original starter and every day 6 and day 10 addition. After the batter is separated into individual bags the final cup of sugar can be substituted with splenda. Because your body doesn’t break down splenda, the yeast is also unable to to break it down(ferment it). If the yeast manages to activate, it will only ferment residual sugars in the milk.

  129. i’ve made afb in the past but cant remember exactly how to make the starter. i dont remember adding yeast to the mixture. it seems like it only had 1cup flour,sugar & milk. if i dont add the yeast will it still make right. thanks

  130. I have made this bread several times and enjoy it. I had some starters in my freezer that I took out to start again. This time I’m only going to keep the starters a few days until it is time to ‘add’ to them, and will make my bread. I think adding to it just for the sake of having enough to pass along.
    I used to just throw the extra starters out when I first made the bread, then I began to bake multiple loaves and froze them along with a starter. Now I feel confident enough to try it with just letting the starter ferment for a few days, then making the bread. I’ll get back to you all and let you know how it turned out.

  131. My question is that I’m wondering if you haven’t found anyone who will accept the starter, can you eliminate the milk, flour and sugar which in my recipe and are all 1 1/2 cup on day 10 and just go into adding the eggs, oil, milk, sugar, etc? I hope someone will know this.

    Cheryl

  132. AAAAHHHHHH!!!!! Help! I have been waiting for 10 days to make this Yummy friendship bread! I was so excited I just started tossing all the ingredints in the bowl and forgot to put out my 3 starter bags!! ahh! Now what do I do!!! Help anyone a.s.a.p!! I still have it in my bowl triing to figure out what to do!!

    • I think your best bet is to start multiplying things…and add 3x of each ingredient in addition to all the ingredients you’ve added already. You’ll end up with 4x the original recipe and that means..what? EIGHT loaves?

      • That is what I was thinking! I love this bread! Guess we will add this to our meal along with our Turkey..LOL 🙂

  133. Hey this is my first time on your web page and I find it delightful. I initially was looking to see if I can refrigerate my mixture that is due for baking and do it tomorrow. (everything is in it). I do my own starter by using 1 cup milk, 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar; I use no yeast at all. Then I follow the ten day process and it always comes out perfect, so much until my family have requested 10 loaves for Thanksgiving.

    • I think this would work if you can wait to stir in the baking soda and baking powder. I have not had good results when I added those two ingredients to a mixture that was going to stand around for awhile. Good luck and let us know how this turns out.
      Barb

  134. I think I’ve read all of the posts and have not seen what the actual size of the “large” box of instant pudding is. I could only find 3.4 oz. Is this the small box? Is this why my bread sunk in the middle?
    Thank you so much for all of the information.

    • Lori, I did a quick check at the grocery store and it looks like 3.4 ounces is the small box and 5.9 ounces is the large box. Try stirring in a little extra flour into the batter to prevent that slump. If you live at altitude, you will need to reduce the baking powder a little.

  135. hey there. love the info! i have had gluten free/dairy free version of this sitting on my counter for the better part of a year. i started it the way that you said to but also i take care of it a bit different. i have two small kiddos at home so my time relevancy is totally off. i just feed it when i remember. also if i know i am going to bake that day i will feed it sometime before. i also do not share it anymore. i just add anywhere between 1/4 to 1/2 cup of ingredients (flour, sugar, milk) depending on how much i want to bake. i usually dont coat the pan in sugar and i experiment quite often also with the flavors. my favorites are chocalate/chocolate chip and lemon/chia seed. 🙂 yummm. anyway, i also make muffins most of the time (time adjusted to approx. 25 min.) thanks!

    • Thanks for the comment, Emily. I would love to hear what substitutions you make to keep the recipe both gluten-free and dairy-free. I’m always on the lookout for recipes that can make those accommodations. Care to share?
      Barb

  136. Hi y’all. I never made starter on my own and when I made it about 15 days ago, it stayed flat in my ziploc and made 6 starters, which I thought was really odd. It also only made 1 large loaf and 1 smaller loaf. It still tasted good, but I was not pleased w/it. So I made a new batch and it bubbled quite happily in my bowl w/ a strainer over it. Until I left it on my oven by mistake when I used it and now its flat. I’m on day 6 after I added milk, sugaar and flour. Did I do something wrong?

    • Leaving the live starter in the oven when it heated up killed the bacteria cultures that make friendship bread so unique. I’m afraid you’ll have to start over because once those little guys are dead, there is no resurrecting them. Sorry!
      Barbara

  137. I got a Day 10 bag (ready to bake) from my SIL and my recipe said to add 1.5 cups each flour, sugar, milk, then bag 4- 1 cup starters. Instead I made 2- 1 cup starters, and 2 batches of bread, total of 4 loaves. When I took out 4 cups of starter I measured what was left and it was 2 cups, so I just put 2 cups into another bowl and made 2 batches of bread. I was planning on giving a loaf and a bag of starter to 2 friends and not bother keeping a starter myself. I don’t need a perpetual cake lying around! Because that’s what it is after all- so much sugar in this recipe it can’t qualify as bread! 🙂

  138. I always use self rising flour so I don’t have to add the baking powder, soda or salt. That is what self rising flour has in it. My bread always turns out moist and delicious. Also, I always end up with about 2 cups of starter to make 2 loaves of bread. Hope this helps! 🙂

  139. I have a question, I have been given starters in the past and even started a couple before, but it has been several years since doing that. I would like to know if when starting a starter if you could use 100% whole wheat flour. Do you think it would still work or do I have to use white flour

  140. This is a great site and am enjoying learning more about Amish Friendship Bread. I have baked it for many years. I have made it as early as day 8 and as late as day 13 with success. I have had it go bad early by keeping the bag to close to the stove where it got to much heat which is the only time it spoiled on me and had to be thrown out. I have made a few flavors, but the original is my family’s favorite. I have made a starter batch with 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, and 1 cup milk and then when I made it used the big box of pudding. I have made a starter batch with 1/2 cup of flour, 1/2 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup of milk. I have made it with a small box of pudding or a large box of pudding at the time of baking and they both turned out. I have separated it out and baked all of it on day 10 as though I were the friends who received it ready to bake instead of squeeze and feed. I have also baked a couple of loaves for Christmas and kept the starters in the fridge and then baked them with all of the ingredients a few days later for New Years. This is a forgiving recipe indeed as you all say. I am looking forward to making it gluten-free to see how that goes and also trying some of the new flavors, including making it without pudding. Thanks to everyone for the sharing.

  141. Could you e-mail me with the answer to a question I have….It says in step 2 to add 1 cup of flour..is that all purpose or self rising flour..I am supposed to mix today and a bit confused
    mrs.mamann@yahoo.com

  142. I can find no mention of what kind of flour(all purpose, self-rising, or bread flour), to use in Amish Friendship Bread. Maybe it does not matter but I would like to know if one is better than the other.

    Thank you!

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