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Easy Homemade Sandwich Bread

Knowing how to make bread at home is a very simple skill that should really be taught in schools across the country. A basic food item that can save you hundreds of dollars a year, (not to mention commercial bread is filled with preservatives) every home cook should know how to bake their own homemade sandwich bread.

This homemade sandwich bread recipe I will share with you today will provide a base from which you can launch your own bread-making skills. A basic, wonderfully soft white bread, ideal for learning the basic skills of bread baking, before going on to make things such as homemade biscuits or sourdough bread.

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Is It Cheaper To Make Your Own Bread?

In the long run ...yes. It will be cheaper to bake your own bread at home as opposed to buying it.

Here in Atlantic Canada, commercially available bread will run you anywhere from $2.99 to $5.99 per loaf (or .18 to .37 cents a slice) depending on the brand and quality of the bread. Artisanal bread can cost even more.

A homemade loaf of bread using the recipe below will roughly come in around .15 cents a slice (or $2.50 /loaf). While the upfront cost of buying ingredients may be higher…….

  • $8.99 for 5 kg (11 lb) of flour
  • $4.58 for 100 g active dry yeast
  • $3.99 for 454 g (1 lb) of butter
  • $1.50 for 2 kg (4 lbs) Sugar

…….you are able to control the quality of ingredients much better. The cheapest loaves of commercial bread are filled with preservatives and ingredients you can’t even pronounce, (ever wonder why store-bought bread lasts so long?)

By investing the time to bake a quality loaf of homemade bread you can create a nutritious product that rivals the “higher-end” breads at a fraction of the cost.

Reduce your costs of baking bread at home even further by purchasing ingredients such as flour and sugar in bulk, and only when on sale! – Chef Markus

How Long Does Homemade Bread Last?

On average, a loaf of homemade bread when stored properly will last anywhere from 3 to 5 days at room temperature. If you live in warm humid conditions this may be cut short to 2 to 3 days due to the higher chance of mold developing.

Due to homemade bread not containing any preservatives, mold spores(which are present in the air around us) are able to grow and multiply much faster then they would on commercial bread.

What’s The Best Way To Store Homemade Bread?

To extend the shelf life of the bread as long as possible I would recommend letting the freshly baked loaf of bread cool completely (overnight on the counter), before refrigerating in a plastic bag, or clean linen bag specifically for that purpose.

By refrigerating the bread, you can easily get it to last you a week. If you don’t eat it all first.

Easy Homemade Bread

If this is your first time baking bread at home, this recipe will teach you the basic steps of making homemade bread the old fashioned way, without a bread machine.

You can make this recipe in an electric mixer (I used my Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer ) if you have one, otherwise, you can mix the dough by hand in a bowl and then knead the dough on a countertop.

a fresh loaf of freshly baked white sandwich bread

Before We Begin

All bread will contain some type of flour, (though it is most often a wheat flour), water and a leavening agent, such as yeast or sourdough starter.

Ingredients such as butter, eggs, sugar, nuts, grains, and fruit, can all be added to a basic bread recipe and will change the texture, flavor, and style of the bread.

The basic steps we will follow below are:

  1. Activating the yeast & measuring out ingredients
  2. Mixing & kneading the dough
  3. Proofing the dough
  4. Punching down and shaping the loaf
  5. Proofing the loaf
  6. Baking The Bread

These six steps are the basic actions most homemade bread recipes will need to follow in order to successfully bake bread.

Types of Yeast

Most modern bread recipes use some form of bakers yeast. These are most often found in dried ‘active dry yeast’ or ‘instant yeast’ versions. Fresh yeast is sometimes used as well, though not as common as it used to be.

  • Active Dry Yeast needs to be ‘bloomed’ or activated before being used in a recipe for best results.
  • Instant Yeast can be added right to the dry ingredients of a recipe, and does not need special activation.
  • Fresh Yeast should also be activated before use, much like active dry yeast.

Sourdough breads generally do not use ‘bakers yeast’ , and instead rely on the ‘wild’ yeasts found in the sourdough starter. Did you know you can make your own sourdough starter at home? – Chef Markus Mueller

Ingredients you will need:

  • 2 cups of warm water
  • 2 tsp of active dry yeast – I use fleischmann’s traditional yeast
  • 2 Tbsp of sugar (use your favourite kind, even molasses or honey will work!)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4-5 cups of all-purpose or bread flour
  • 1/2 cup soft butter or oil
  • extra flour for dusting the counter and kneading

1. Activating the yeast & measuring out ingredients

Begin by taking your active dry yeast and mixing it with your sugar in a deep bowl or another tall container. Add the warm water to the yeast and stir it once to make sure all the yeast is mixed with water and not clumped together.

Make sure that the water is WARM. A littler warmer then lukewarm is perfect but not hot, generally between 105F and 110F. If you use hot water you will kill the yeast (120F+), which is, believe it or not, a living organisim. Use water that is too cold, and the yeast will not activate. It needs the warmth and moisture to wake up, and the sugar to feed on and begin fermentation. – Chef Markus

You will see the yeast start to froth and bubble as it feeds on the sugar. The warmer the water the faster this process will go. Make sure you can easily hold your hand in the water without burning yourself. This is called blooming or activating your yeast.

2. Mixing & kneading the dough

While the yeast is happily frothing away, measure out your flour and salt.

Tip: Don’t add your salt to the water/ sugar mix at the start, as it can inhibit the growth of the yeast.

Once the yeast has doubled in size and” bloomed”,  you can add the whole liquid yeast mixture to your bowl or mixer with the flour and salt. Add in the butter or other fat, and mix it together until it forms a soft dough that you can either kneaded by hand on a counter or kept kneading(mixing) in a stand mixer.

If using a stand mixer as I did with my Kitchen Aid, you will want the dough to pull away from the sides without leaving behind any flour or gloopy mess on the sides of the bowl. The dough should be soft and elastic without overly sticking to you hands.

If mixing the dough by hand in a bowl, simply get it to a point where it holds together in a ball, and then place it on a floured surface to continue kneading the dough.

Mixing Bread Dough in an electric mixer

Knead the bread dough for about 5 to 10 minutes until it forms a smooth stretchy ball. While kneading the dough you are developing the gluten strands that form when flour and water are mixed.

The more you knead the dough the stretchier it will become resulting in a fluffier and softer end product.

Pizza dough for example, is kneaded for a longer time(12 -15 minutes)which results in a chewier and denser crust, while kneading biscuits for a short time (1-2 minutes) allows the dough to stay flaky and not become chewy.

3. Proofing the dough

To avoid the bread becoming chewy and dense we need to proof the dough. Proofing is the process in which you allow the yeast to go back to work consuming the sugar and releasing gas into the dough causing it to rise.

Since the gluten strands have been developed in the mixing/kneading stage, they will stretch, resulting in a nice fluffy ball of dough.

Bread dough proofing in a metal mixing bowl.

Proof your dough by placing it in a greased bowl. This helps to prevent the dough from sticking to the sides. Cover it with a clean linen dish towel and then placing it in a warm area, such as on top of your stove (which we will now pre-heat to 375F). Proofing takes about 20 to 30 minutes depending on the temperature of the dough and in the surrounding room. The dough needs to at least double in size.

4. Punching down and shaping the loaf

Once fully proofed, take the dough out of the bowl and place it back on a floured counter top/ surface. Punch out all the air from the dough, flattening it completely with your hands.

You may be asking well what was the point of that, if it was just all nice and fluffy? Don’t you worry! This first proofing stage is to help relax the gluten in the flour and lets the yeast use up some of its pent up energy. Proofing the dough twice (once after the dough is mixed, and then again after it is shaped), will give you a much softer and developed texture than simply proofing it once.

A series of pictures showing how bread is shaped before being placed into a loaf pan.

Next, we shape the dough. Starting at one edge of the flattened bread dough, start rolling it up into a tube. Make sure to roll it nice and tight to avoid any unnecessary air bubbles. Once it is rolled up, pinch the trailing edge to the rest of the dough to prevent it from unrolling.

Place the shaped bread in a pre-greased bread loaf pan or on a sheet pan if you want to bake a more rustic loaf. You should now have a simple shaped sandwich bread loaf!.

5. Proofing the loaf

Again cover the loaf with your clean dishcloth and let it proof again until double in size. This can take up to an hour if the kitchen is fairly cool. Once proofed a second time the bread can go right into your pre-heated oven.

6. Baking Your Homemade Bread

This is the easy part!

Bake the homemade bread at 375F for 15 minutes and then drop the temperature down to 350F. Baking it at a higher temperature ensures the bread rises just a little extra in the oven and produces a nicer crust due to the initial heat.

After dropping the temperature the inside of the loaf continues to bake without browning the outside to severely. Bake the loaf of bread for another 30 to 40 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow when you “knock” on the top.

Bread Baking in the oven

You can also check the temperature with a food thermometer. The temperature should read 220F.

Cooling The Bread

After your homemade bread comes out of the oven let it cool on a wire rack until you can touch it with your bare hands without burning yourself. If baking the bread in a loaf pan, let the bread cool in the pan until you can turn it out with your hands, and then cool on a wire rack.

A freshly sliced loaf of homemade sandwich bread

Slice the bread and bag it up for storage. This homemade bread will keep on the counter for 2 to 3 days or 5 to 7 days in the fridge. Once completely cooled you can also wrap the whole loaf in plastic wrap and then Ziploc bag it and freeze it! When you need to thaw it out simply place it in the fridge in its wrapping until completely thawed.

Made the recipe? Comment & Rate it below, then take a picture and tag me on Facebook & Instagram: @earthfoodandfire . For more from scratch recipes follow me on Instagram & Pinterest

Super easy recipe for homemade bread. Great for sandwiches and toast!

Homemade Sandwich Bread

Markus Mueller
Making bread at home is so easy, not to mention cheap, that everyone should know how to make a basic loaf of white sandwich bread. This bread recipe makes a perfect loaf of homemade sandwich bread.
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 20 mins
Course Bread
Cuisine French
Servings 1 Bread loaf
Calories 2838.7 kcal


  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter or oil
  • 4 – 5 cups all purpose flour


Bloom the Yeast

  • Measure out the yeast, warm water and sugar.
  • In a tall measuring cup or other container, combine the sugar yeast and water, stirring once to ensure all the yeast is mixed, and doesn’t clump together. Set this mixture aside and let the yeast activate and double in size.

Mixing & Kneading the Dough

  • Measure out the flour,salt, and butter. Ensure the butter is at room temperature.

With an Electric Mixer

  • Add the flour, salt and butter to the mixing bowl. Once the yeast and water mixture has risen and doubled in volume, add the liquid to the dry ingredients. Mix on low until the dough forms a solid mass, and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Keep kneading for about 5 minutes.

Mixing by Hand

  • In a bowl mix the flour and salt. Pour the flour mix onto the counter and make a “well” in the middle of the flour. Melt the butter and pour it into the yeast and water mixture. Pour the liquid mix into the well slowly, making sure it does not breach the flour walls.  
  • Using a wooden spoon or your finger slowly mix flower from the edges into the liquid until the liquid starts to become thicker. Keep mixing in the flour until you do not have to worry about the liquid “escaping” and running across the counter.
  • Keep mixing the flower into the liquid mix until you form a dough. Knead the dough by hand for 10-12 minutes until it is smooth and slightly stretchy.
  • Pre-heat your oven to 375F

Proof The Bread Dough

  • Once the dough is mixed, set it in a greased bowl and cover with a clean linen dish towel. Set the bowl in a warm area(such as ontop of a pre-heating stove) and let the dough proof for 30 to 40 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.

Shaping The Bread Loaf

  • Remove the proofed dough from the bowl and place it on a lightly floured surface. Punch down the dough until all the air has been pressed out and the dough is flat on the counter.
  • Form the dough by rolling the flattened dough into a roll. Pinch the trailing edge together to prevent it from unrolling. Place the loaf in a bread loaf pan or on a sheet pan.
  • Again cover the dough and let it proof in a warm spot until it has doubled in size again.

Baking Your Homemade Sandwich Bread

  • Once doubled in size, you may brush the top of the dough with an eggwash if you like.
  • Place the dough in the pre-heated oven. Bake at 375F for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350F and bake for another 30 to 40 minutes(for a loaf of bread – if making rolls bake for 15-20 minutes). The bread should be a nice golden brown, and sound hollow when you knock on it. You can also check the internal temperature of the bread with a thermometer. It should read 220F


Calories: 2838.7kcal
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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  1. Lisa Banville

    5 stars
    This is my go to bread recipe now! To make this whole wheat though, what would need to be adjusted or would it just be a simple flour change?


    • Awesome! That’s great to hear! To make the bread with whole wheat flour I would suggest using half whole wheat, and half all-purpose flour. You will likely also need to add an extra egg and a quarter cup of water. Whole wheat flour simply absorbs so much more moisture than the all-purpose flour, the bread would be very dry otherwise. Happy baking!

  2. Heather in Ottawa

    Can you tell me what size pan you used to bake the bread? It looks larger than a standard pan, so I might have to hit Amazon for the right one. Thanks for the great instructions and steps.

  3. Anxious to try your recipe. I see the print version says 1/4 cup of butter. Your picture shows a half cup and also your comment section. So I am going with the half cup. I wanted to also confirm the pan size, I plan on using my large Pullman loaf pan which it looks like that is what you used. You pictures really made me want to try this, so good job!

    • Hi Christa, you can use either amount, I had updated the recipe a while ago to make the bread a little softer and not as dry. I guess I forgot to update the butter in the recipe card. I will do so now. Have a great day!

  4. Hi!

    I tried this recipe with instant yeast, I really enjoyed the outcome!

    Is it at all possible to freeze the dough and bake it fresh when I need it?


    • Hi Shania, it is in theory possible to freeze the dough. I would do so after initially mixing and kneading it. Then when you go to bake with it you only need to that and proof the dough. That said, if frozen to long, the yeast may die and not rise well enough once proofed.

      Happy baking,

  5. Hi! I was wondering if you could make rolls out of this bread dough ? Thanks

  6. Teresa Doyle

    Hi Marcus. I have been making bread & rolls with relatively good success for years but always like trying a new one. You can bet I’ll be trying this, it looks delicious. It’s always nice to find a recipe from a fellow Maritimer (I’m in N.S.) and I will also be sharing it with my daughter. (One of her best friends was born and raised in P.E.I. and is a wonderful cook. She has probably heard of Earth Food and Fire. I’ll share this with her as well!)
    Can’t wait to try it, stay well!

  7. 5 stars
    Very easy to follow. Thanks!

  8. Marybeth

    5 stars
    Excellent recipe, very easy, very tasty

  9. Jacqueline Frost Frost

    What is the butter for?

  10. 5 stars
    This is such amazing bread! I bake a lot but yeast has always terrified me. One bad experience ruined it. I decided to finally jump that hurdle using this recipe. The easy to follow instructions made it so easy! The bread turned out soft and delicious with the perfect crust! My family loves it! We’ll never buy store bought again! Thank you!

  11. It’s in the oven right now! This recipe made two loaves for me! I can’t wait to try it! You broke it down so easy for me and I’m a new bread baker. Thank you!l so much!

  12. 5 stars
    Loved this recipe. It was super simple and makes for excellent soft delicious bread! Mine came out absolutely perfect and I’m still new to bread making. This will be a staple in my recipe book from now on!

  13. 5 stars
    Really easy recipe to follow and I’ve made this 3-4 times now! I added chia seeds once and that turned out really well. I am adding raisins to this batch so here’s hoping it turns out well too ?? What are some different ways you modify the recipe when you make it?

    • Hi Heather!, Glad you liked the recipe! I’ve added dried fruit to the recipe (like you are doing with raisins..I would suggest soaking them in warm water first to plump the fruit up.) I’ve also added fresh herbs, sundried tomato, and played with mixtures of various flours to make multigrain, or wholewheat loaves. I’d love to see a picture of your next loaf! Tag us on social media @earthfoodandfire!

  14. Claudia J. Glennan

    How do you substitute sourdough starter for the active dried yeast (in this or other recipes)?

    • Hi Claudia,

      In order to use sourdough starter instead of yeast, I would suggest using 1 cup of active sourdough starter in the recipe above. Mix everything together and if the dough seems a little tacky add a bit more flour. Knead the dough as you would if using yeast, and then let the dough sit to rise and proof (double in size). Punch the dough down, shape it and then let it rise again before baking.

      I’d love to hear back how that works out for you!

      Cheers, Chef Markus

  15. Brittany Maas

    5 stars
    I’m just putting the loaf in the oven. I halved the recipe since it’s my first time making bread in while so I figured I’d make one.

    I love your walk though of the recipe and how you broke it down easily for others to learn from and do. Thank you!

  16. My husband loves homemade fresh bread from the oven. Like, really, really loves it. Can you blame him? I’m intrigued by your recipe. I’ll have to try it out. To make my husband happy of course. 😉

    My bread never turns out that pretty however. Ha!

  17. Hey Markus, I love the tutorial! It’s easy to follow and the bread looks good! Now all I want to do is lather a slice of bread with butter and honey. I’m hungry.

  18. I love to make bread ! Your recipe is nice and easy to follow. My kids love to help me punch down the puffy dough, especially my daughter ! Thanks for the recipe.

  19. 5 stars
    I love homemade bread and your looks perfect!

  20. I love fresh baked bread especially when it has that nice crust and good air pockets inside. Yours looks amazing almost reminds me of a brioche. Nice!

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