Now that you have a fresh, strong starter, it’s time to make something with it! We already had some bread and didn’t need more yet, so I decided to try making some sourdough crackers. I’d read they were easy, and I love snacks. Let’s get to the recipe… but first, a few dozen advertisements, and 3 pages of pithy personal anecdotes that no one is going to read:
Ain’t nobody got time for that. We have crackers to make and eat, dammit.
Sourdough Cracker Ingredients
You will need:
- 1 cup sourdough starter. Feed the starter the night before for a good strong flavor. We don’t care about leavening with these crackers.
- 1 cup flour. Any type works; experiment to see what works for you! I’ve used all purpose and wheat to good effect.
- 1/2 tsp salt.
- 3 tbsp olive oil (or another oil; your preference.)
- More salt and oil for brushing and sprinkling on top of the crackers before baking.
- Other seasonings or flavorings to add as desired. I’ll cover a few at the end, but for the pictures in this post, I added cheddar cheese to make sourdough cheese crackers. NOMF.
- Combine the starter, flour, oil, and salt in a bowl and mix by hand until a smooth dough forms. Only work it enough to combine everything, like cookie dough.
- Cut the ball into equal parts, wrap them in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled, 30 minutes or more. I cut into 4 parts for baking on a standard sheet.
- Heat your oven to 375 degrees. I used a stone to help cook the crackers evenly but it’s okay if you don’t have one.
- Work one piece of dough at a time; keep the others chilling. Flour a piece of parchment paper and roll out the dough with a rolling pin until it’s thin and uniform. I roll it until it’s about the size of a standard baking sheet, which works out to ~ 1/16″ thickness. You can go thicker or thinner; it will change baking times and crispiness. EXPERIMENT! Thin = crispy.
- Brush the flattened dough with oil and sprinkle lightly with salt. Coarse salt works best, in my experience.
- Use a knife and cut the dough into whatever shapes you prefer. I find it’s easiest to just make 1-2″ squares for starters. You’ll get some odd shaped ones around the edges, which just makes them more fun to eat. I’ve done small squares, large squares, triangles, and used a biscuit cutter to make circles. The large squares are my favorite, but try different shapes!
Baking your Sourdough Crackers
- Transfer the dough to a baking sheet (I just move the whole parchment paper they’re on) or place directly onto the stone, if you’re using one. Bake for 12-18 minutes until they’re a nice golden brown and crispy looking.
- Thicker crackers may need to bake longer; thin ones may be done faster than you expect. Try to roll out the dough to a consistent thickness; practice makes perfect.
- Remove and let them cool fully on a wire rack or other surface before storing in an airtight container. If they’re warm when you store them, they’ll get chewy.
- If you have thick ones that are a bit chewy, just bake them a little longer and they’ll crisp right up. I’ve done that the morning after and it worked perfectly.
- Celebrate the diversity of your crackers by eating them all equally.
Additions for Sourdough Crackers
This is a very versatile, basic cracker recipe. The best part is that you can add almost anything to it. I’ve experimented with several batches so far, and have yet to be disappointed. I’ve tried the following:
- Cheddar Cheese Sourdough Crackers: Add 1/2 to 1 cup of finely shredded cheddar cheese to the cracker dough before chilling and rolling it. You will have to bake them a bit longer and they won’t need as much oil or salt at the end. Don’t be afraid to let them brown a bit; it just makes the cheese flavor stand out more.
- Monterey Pepperjack Sourdough Crackers: Add 1 cup of finely shredded pepperjack cheese. Bake a bit extra until they’re browned and crispy. These go AMAZING with cheese dip.
- Sriracha Sourdough Crackers: Add 2 tbsp of Sriracha sauce to the dough when you make it. Add a little onion and garlic powder too if you want (~1tsp of each.) Bake normally. They’ll have a nice flavor without a lot of heat. Use more Sriracha or another, stronger hot sauce to bring the scorch factor up.
- Italian Chew Treats: My first batch! I added 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, 1 1/2 tsp of garlic powder, and 1/2 tsp of onion powder. I brushed them a bit more generously with olive oil than I otherwise would have, and sprinkled on coarse salt and Italian seasoning for a little flavor and color. They came out like mini bread sticks!
That’s it. These crackers are quick and easy to make, and they taste absolutely amazing compared to store bought ones.
Author’s Update: I just had an epiphany this morning. I put a thin layer of peanut butter between two cheddar cheese sourdough crackers and.. guys. GUYS. DO. THIS.