Recipe | Sourdough Charcoal Bread

July 17th, 2023
Lauren Leone
Read Time: 7 Minutes
Meet Simply Bread Co customer Kevin Grenz (@MeloBread)

Recipe | Sourdough Charcoal Bread

July 17th, 2023
Lauren Leone
Read Time: 7 Minutes

The world of baking has seen a remarkable trend: the rise of sourdough charcoal bread. This unique type of bread combines the traditional art of sourdough with the distinct flavors and striking appearance of activated charcoal. Join us as we delve into the secrets behind this intriguing bread, and follow along with our recipe for a unique culinary experience!

Before we dive straight into the fascinating world of sourdough charcoal bread, it’s important to understand the foundational technique behind it: sourdough baking. Unlike traditional yeast bread, sourdough bread relies on a natural fermentation process consisting of wild yeast and bacteria. This time-honored method is what gives sourdough its tangy and complex flavor profile, along with its distinctive chewy texture.

Activated charcoal, most commonly used throughout different industries for its absorbent properties, has found its way into the culinary world. As an ingredient in sourdough bread, it adds a vibrant black color to the dough, making it visually captivating. The enticing black color is achieved by incorporating activated charcoal into the dough during the mixing process. While the charcoal itself is odorless and tasteless, it can make your sourdough an eye-catching centerpiece.

Beyond its unique appearance, activated charcoal offers a range of potential benefits when incorporated into bread. It’s believed that activated charcoal may aid in digestion by binding toxins and helping in their elimination from the body. While these claims have not yet been scientifically substantiated, they are an intriguing conversation starter for food enthusiasts!



#1 - In a large mixing bowl, combine your bread flour, whole wheat flour, activated charcoal powder, and salt. Mix your dry ingredients together until evenly distributed.

#2 - Add your sourdough starter into the bowl, and gradually pour in the water while stirring. Mix until your dough begins to come together.

#3 - Once the dough has formed, transfer it to a clean work surface and knead for about 10-15 minutes, or until it becomes elastic and smooth. If your dough is sticky, dust your work surface with flour.

#4 - Place your dough into the mixing bowl, or your Simply Bread proofing basket, and cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Allow your dough to rest at room temperature for about 3-4 hours, or until your dough has doubled in size. This fermentation period allows the sourdough culture to develop flavor.

#5 - After the bulk fermentation, gently remove your dough from the bowl or proofing basket, and shape it into a loaf. Place your shaped dough onto a well-floured surface.

#6 - Preheat your oven to 450° and place a Dutch oven or a baking stone in your oven to heat up.

#7 - Cover your shaped dough with a kitchen towel and let it rest for another 1-2 hours, or until the dough has risen and feels light and airy to the touch.

#8 - Carefully remove the hot Dutch oven or baking stone from the oven. If using a Dutch oven, place your dough inside. If you are using a baking stone, transfer the dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

#9 - Score the top of your dough with a sharp knife or a razor to create a decorative pattern.

#10 - Place the Dutch oven or baking sheet into your oven and bake for 30 minutes with the lid on (if using a Dutch oven). Then, remove the lid and continue baking for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the bread has a deep golden crust.

#11 - Once baked, carefully remove your bread from the oven, and transfer it onto a wire rack to cool.

Slice, serve, and enjoy!

For a savory experience, try topping your sourdough charcoal bread with avocado, smoked salmon, or your favorite cheese. On the sweet side, experiment with honey, nut butter, or fruit.

Enjoy your very own homemade sourdough charcoal bread! Its striking black color, tangy flavor, and the satisfaction of producing your own unique loaf are guaranteed to have you coming back for seconds!

Sourdough Charcoal Bread Recipe on Instagram

Sourdough Charcoal Bread Recipe on Facebook

Join the Simply Bread Community

Read about unique artisan bakers’ stories and latest recipes, and connect with the baking community.

We will even notify you about our exclusive promotions, new product releases, oven software updates, and more.