Breads (Sourdough) - Soft Loaves

Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread

August 16, 2019 | Recipe by Bake with Paws
Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread

Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread

Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread

This Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread recipe is adapted from TheFlourFloozy with some modification.  Thank you Inna for the inspiration and recipe.

Characteristic of this bread:  The texture is especially soft, fluffy and moist on the first day and it lasts very well for 2 - 3 days.  There is a very slight mild sourness.

I have another soft sourdough recipe that you may like to try too. Soaked Multigrain Soft Sourdough Bread recipe. 

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.

Recipe - Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Bread

If you like recipe in buns, please click Oat Porridge Soft Sourdough Buns recipe.  You may also use the buns recipe to bake in 450g Loaf Pan.

Yields:  3 loaves in 600g Loaf Pan


Levain - 260g total (ratio 1:3:3):
40g sourdough starter (100% Hydration)
120 bread flour
120g water

Oat Porridge:
45g rolled oat
150g water or milk

Main Dough:
300g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
50g spelt flour (If you don't have spelt flour, just used 350g bread flour)
260g levain (above)
All oat porridge
40g raw honey
1 1/2 tsp salt
40g butter, room temperature
50 - 65g fresh milk or full cream milk

100g rolled oats

600g loaf pan (12" X 3.5" X 4"  or  31cm X 9cm X 10cm)

  1. Levain:
    1. One night before baking, mix all ingredients in a jar and cover.
    2. Let it ferment at room temperature (approximately 27-28C) overnight until tripled.  It took about 12 hours. You will get around 280g of levain.  But, you will only need 260g.
    3. Note - If you like to prepare the levain on the same baking day, please use the ratio 1:1:1.  Let it ferment at room temperature (approximately 27C - 30C) until tripled.  It took about 3-5 hours depend how strong is your starter.
  2. Oat Porridge:
    1. In a saucepan, cook the rolled oats in water for few minutes until become thick porridge.  Keep aside to cool.
  3. Main Dough:
    1. Put all ingredients (except butter), including sourdough starter (levain) and all the oat porridge into the bowl of stand mixer. Using the dough hook, knead for 3 - 5 minutes (Chef Kenwood mixer, speed 2.5) until the dough comes together.  Add in butter and continue kneading for another 10 - 12 minutes until achieve window pane stage.
  4. First Proofing/Resting The Dough:  
    1. In the same bowl, let the dough rest for 60 minutes. Keep it covered with clingfilm or use a lid.  The dough did not rise a lot in 60 minutes.
  5. To shape:
    1. Transfer the dough to a clean floured surface then divide into 3 equal portions. 
    2. Form each portion to a ball.  Flatten with rolling pin into a dish.  
    3. Fold right to centre and fold left overlap it.  Roll out with rolling pin into long rectangle shape. Roll up the dough like Swiss Roll until a small log is formed. 
    4. Brush top of the dough with water and dip into a bowl of rolled oats.
    5. Place all dough in the prepared loaf pan.  
  6. Final Proofing:
    1. Let it proof at warm and dark place until the dough is double in size.  It took about 4 hours for this bread at room temperature of 28C - 30C.  It may take longer depending on your ambient temperature and your starter.
  7. To bake:
    1. Fifteen minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 180C.
    2. Brush with egg wash.
    3. Bake at preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
    4. Remove bread from oven and let it cool on rack completely before slicing.



A healthy starter is very crucial as advised by Baking with Gina.   It is advisable to feed your starter regularly if you want your bread to rise nicely and to use the starter (levain) at its peak.  A starter that is fed regularly will be more active in general.  If the mother starter is not strong, the bread dough will not rise a lot even though the starter is used at its peak.  


Gluten forms when flour comes in contact with water.  Hydration of the flour causes the sticky and stretchy protein to form, giving structure to the bread.  This makes your bread trap air and rise. 

Gluten in dough can be developed by autolyse, resting, kneading or folding.

The windowpane test is used to determine whether the dough has been sufficiently kneaded.  By gently pulling the dough (or you may pinch off some dough) and trying to stretch it into a thin membrane.  If you are able to stretch the dough paper thin and translucent  without tearing, then the gluten is fully developed.  However, if you can stretch it without tearing but the membrane is not transparent, then the gluten is not yet fully developed.  

However, from my experience not all the recipe can achieve a thin and translucent window pane stage easily.   For example low hydration and low fat dough.  For such recipes, a reasonable window pane is good enough and it can be left to rest. Gluten will continue to develop while resting.  Exercising restraint to not over-knead the dough prevents the gluten from being overworked and broken.   Some of you may have experienced the dough breaking during the second proofing.  It is because the dough is over kneaded. 

The total kneading time for me is usually 15 minutes at low speeds except brioche dough with high fat percentage or dough using liquid fat which usually takes a little longer (maybe 18-20 mins).

From my experience, I found that high hydration dough with high percentage of fat will be easy to stretch and achieve a paper thin windowpane stage.


Why do I use milk powder?  
  1. Milk or milk powder will enhance the flavour of the bread and makes the bread texture softer due to the fat content of the milk. 
  2. Milk powder is shelf stable and you can have it anytime when you want to use.  Unlike liquid milk you need to finish within a certain time before it spoils.

For kneading, please regard the timing provided as an indication only. It is only meant as a guide.  Timing may differ depending on the brand of flour and electric mixer used. The protein content may vary from one brand of flour to another.


The right flour plays a very important role in bread making.   To achieve fluffy, soft and light bread, I used Japan High Gluten Flour in most of my bread baking.  The protein content is around  12 - 13%.


The liquid measurement given is also a guide.  It is advisable to always reserve some liquid and not add it all in one go.  This would give you the opportunity to adjust if necessary. If dough is too dry, add the reserve liquid one tablespoon at a time until the right consistency.  This is because each flour absorbs water and hydrates differently. 


Please note that the proofing timing may also vary depending on your climate, environment, flour and your starter. 

If you are unable to judge by just looking at the dough, you can do the finger poke test:

  1. Lightly press the side of the proved dough with your finger.  If it bounces back immediately without any indentation, it means the dough is under proved and needs more time before baking.
  2. If the indentation stays and it doesn’t bounce back, it means it has been over proved.
  3. If the indentation slowly bounces back and leave a small indentation, it is ready to bake. 
  4. There will be a final burst of rising once the bread is placed to bake in the oven and it is called oven spring. 

If your bread collapses or gets wrinkled on top after removing from oven, it could be because your dough over proved during the second proofing. Please proof until the tip of the dough just reaches the rim of the pan, around 80% - 90% in size.


Do also note that the baking temperature and timing provided are what works for my oven and should also be regarded as a guide only. Every oven behaves a little differently, so please adjust accordingly for your oven.


  1. Can I substitute spelt for rye or whole-wheat?

    1. Hi there,
      Thank you for asking. You can replace with whole wheat flour.
      If you want to replace with rye flour, please use small percentage like 10% - 15% of rye flour (40g - 60) from the total flour. The reason is because rye flour usually prevent your bread dough rise very high.

      Cheers :)

    2. Thanks for the tip! Tried your multigrain one and it was amazing. This is definitely next on my list

    3. You are most welcome... Happy baking :)

  2. Hi, can I use stretch and fold method to make the bread without kneading?

    1. Hi, thank you for asking. I have not tried stretch and fold on soft sourdough bread. I remember I have seen someone used this method on sourdough brioche. But, I am not sure whether it works on this recipe.

      Cheers :)

    2. I made this recipe (with a few substitutes to make it dairy free--soy milk and Earth balance) with a less kneading stretch and fold method and it turned out awesome! I don't have a mixer, so I mixed everything in the first step except the butter, let it rest 30 min, hand kneaded in the butter a pat at a time, then did a few stretch and folds each hour for the next few hours. It strengthened up great. It turned out delicious, so soft and very flavorful.

    3. Hi, thanks for your comment and try out this recipe with modification. Good to know that it works well with S&F method too.

      Cheers :)

  3. hi, if i want to use the water instead of milk, is the measurement of water same as milk-150gm ?tq

    1. Hi, thank you for your question. Yes, it should be the same. Cheers :)

  4. If I want to use 1:1:1 ratio for levain for same day bake, do I use 90g starter, 90g bread flour, 90g water for the 75% levain recipe? wait until it double or triple in volume?

    1. Hi, thank you for asking. Yes, it is right. Double or triple volume means when the levain rise till double or triple in height. Cheers :)

    2. Thanks for the reply, trying this recipe today. Will let you know the outcome :)

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Hi, came across your blog and I really want to try this recipe. If I want to use a yudane in this recipe, what modifications do you suggest I do? Do I subtract away the weight of the flour and water for the yudane from the original weights of flour and water for the 41% levain recipe? Thank you.

    1. Hi, thank you for your question.
      Actually, this recipe does not need Yudane method. This bread is very soft and moist due to oat porridge. I afraid the bread will be too moist if you use Yudane method.

      Yes, subtract away the weight of the flour and water for the yudane if you still want to try.

      Cheers :)

  7. hi, any difference if I don't do the first proof for 1hr? Just to let it rest for 15-20mins then continue on to shape the dough and do final proof?

    1. Hi, thank you for asking. Actually there is no different. You can let the dough rest for 15 minutes to 60 minutes will be fine.
      Cheers :)

    2. The top of my dough after proofing is a bit wrinkly. Any reason for it? Thanks.

    3. Hi, it could be over proofing.
      Try to proof up to 90% of the size instead of double.

  8. Hi there!
    Curious about the calculations for the levain. You wrote that "Total Flour is 350g + 130g (from levain) = 480g" however in the levain recipe total weight is 260g even though when you add up the starter + flour + water it's actually 280g. After that in the directions it's started that total fermented weight of levain is 165g.

    Just wanted to clarify what the actual grammage of the starter should be. Thank you!

    1. Hi Rachel,

      Sorry for the confusion. Actually, I have revised the recipe yesterday and forgot to change accordingly.

      You will get around 280g of levain. But, you will need only 260g for baking.

      I have already updated in the above recipe.

      Apologise for any inconveniences caused. Thank you for the clarification.

      Cheers and happy baking :)

  9. Hii! Is it possible to use instant oats instead of rolled oats? Rolled oats are rather pricy here:(

    1. Hi Andrea, Thanks for asking. Yes, it should be fine.
      Cheers :)

  10. How much water is added to the main dough? Do all the liquid come from the porridge and cream?!

    1. Hi, thanks for asking. Yes, all liquid come from the porridge and milk. I don't add water in the dough. I used fresh milk or full cream milk (whole milk).
      Cheers :)

  11. Hi, do you make the porridge the night before when making the levin, or on the morning of the bake?
    Loving your recipes, Thanks

    1. Hi, thanks for reading this recipe. I made on the same day and let it cool before using. I don't advise to make a night in advance because the porridge will become dry.
      Cheers :)

  12. Hi, my loaf hasn't rose in the oven. Looks a bit brick like. Can you please provide some ideas why?

    1. Hi there, Thank you for trying. It could be many reasons. It is very hard for me to point out the actual reason. Could be your flour, your kneading, your starter or others.

      It is important to use high gluten flour especially Japanese High Gluten flour and also healthy starter.

      Kindly read the general notes on the bottom of the post.

      Cheers :)


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