This buttermilk sandwich bread has an ever so slight tang and an almost cake-like in texture and toasts amazingly. It’s also ideal for, natch, sandwiches of any sort.–Renee Schettler Rossi

A partially sliced loaf of buttermilk sandwich bread on a wooden cutting board with a bread knife lying beside it.

Buttermilk Sandwich Bread

5 / 8 votes
This buttermilk sandwich bread is a classic recipe that turns out tender bread, perfect for toast, sandwiches, bread pudding, and beyond.
David Leite
Servings16 servings
Calories133 kcal
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk , (either low-fat or full-fat)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold or room temperature, plus more for slicking the pan
  • 3 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon wheat bran, (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (a 1/4-ounce or 7-g packet) instant yeast
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons melted butter, for brushing the loaf


  • Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan.
  • In a small saucepan, heat the buttermilk and butter over medium heat until it registers about 130ºF(54°C) on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from the heat.
  • In a stand mixer fit with the flat beater, mix together 1 1/2 cups of the flour, the sugar, wheat bran (if using), salt, and yeast on low speed just until combined. Add the warm buttermilk mixture and mix until all the ingredients are smooth and combined. Add the egg and continue beating for 1 minute.
  • Add the remaining 1 3/4 cups flour and continue mixing for 5 minutes. The dough will be sticky and will not come away from the sides of the bowl. Scrape the dough into the prepared pan and brush the top with the melted butter.
  • Cover the pan loosely with waxed paper and let the dough rise to within 1 inch of the top of the pan, about 25 minutes. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat it to 375ºF (190°C).
  • Bake the loaf until the top feels firm and is lightly browned, about 40 minutes.
  • Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto the rack and let cool completely before slicing into roughly hewn hunks or slender sandwich slices.
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Serving: 1 sliceCalories: 133 kcalCarbohydrates: 22 gProtein: 4 gFat: 3 gSaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 1 gTrans Fat: 1 gCholesterol: 19 mgSodium: 175 mgFiber: 1 gSugar: 2 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2010 Elinor Klivans. Photo © 2010 Susie Cushner. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Wow. This may become my new basic bread recipe. I’m terrible with yeast breads, so I tend to stay away from them. I’ve made no-knead breads, but sometimes you want a soft, tender sandwich loaf. This is that loaf! It’s like the love child of a traditional sandwich bread and a no-knead bread—no kneading but also no waiting all day for the rising and proofing stages.

Mixing the dough for 5 minutes is crucial to its success. I could visibly see the difference in the dough from when I started compared to after the 5-minute period. The recipe says you’ll have a batter but mine was more like a very soft dough. I think with some practice, you could shape it or form little buns.

Also, watch your dough during the first rise! I left my first loaf alone for 40 minutes and came back to find the dough billowing out of the pan (I poked it back to deflate it a little and then baked it and it was no worse for wear). I also started checking the loaf after 30 minutes of baking and found 35 minutes to be my sweet spot.

It made great toast. I love this bread—the crust is soft, the crumb is tender, and the flavor has a hint of tanginess from the buttermilk.

I love the idea of making homemade sandwich bread but it always seem to involve too much time and then the bread disappears so quickly. Luckily this recipe comes together easily and in the blink of an eye. The results are delicious.

The buttermilk adds a nice tang that give it much more flavor than store-bought white bread. I can see myself making this all the time.

This buttermilk sandwich bread is very easy to prepare and can be made even by people who consider themselves “yeast phobic.” It’s a nice white bread prepared in no time and looks like the real thing.

I prepared it for the weekend, but it was finished by 6 pm on Friday. The bread is very light and easy to cut it into nice slices a few hours after baking. I’ll try to make another batch during the week for morning toasts.

This is a very nice everyday bread. You can mix up the dough in the morning and have fresh bread for lunch. It’s a little richer than most breads because of the addition of the egg. It makes very nice toast.

The flavor is good. The texture on the inside is perfectly soft and the crust allows for a good crunch without being too hard. I didn’t use the bran. I followed the directions but if I made it again, I might try to deal with smoothing the top a little or something. It wasn’t perfectly rounded.

It was almost cake-like when sliced. Very quick and easy. Will do this one again—can do it on a weeknight. Makes great toast!

I used low-fat buttermilk for this recipe as it was all I had. I did add the wheat bran for a little extra fiber—it wasn’t very noticeable in the finished product, so I will probably use more next time. Ended up baking it for an extra five minutes to get a nice brown color on top.

About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    When I don’t have buttermilk on hand, I have substituted 1 cup of milk + 1/4 cup full fat yogurt. The bread comes out every bit as good as when made with buttermilk.

  2. 5 stars
    I whipped up this loaf last night after dinner and made myself wait until this morning for toast. Delicious! Light crumb and tangy flavor! I used active dry yeast so proofed it in the buttermilk after letting it cool a bit after coming off the stove. The 25 minute rise in the loaf pan was adequate, and the loaf was done after 35 minutes in the oven. I can see a grilled cheese sandwich coming for lunch. I agree 100% with Ruthie on kneading, so next time I might double the recipe and and try that method. Either way, this is a quick and tasty loaf!

    1. Fantastic, Lisa! We are thrilled that this turned out so well. Toast for breakfast and grilled cheese for lunch sound like a perfect day. Please let us know what you try next.

  3. 5 stars
    This bread is so good! I love to bake but breads have never been my expertise. This recipe really is no-fail. It was so easy to make and fast (for bread) – enough so that I can’t imagine buying bread again. I highly recommend trying this – especially if you’re intimidated by bread making.

    1. Teresa, that is superb!! Such a loaf!! Now, others, take Teresa’s lead and start baking this loaf!