Sourdough Bread Bowls

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Delicious Sourdough Bread Bowls are sturdy enough to hold a hot bowl of soup and have a crisp exterior with a soft and slightly tangy interior.

A plate topped with a hollwed out bread bowl.

I don’t know about you but in the winter I love enjoying soup at least once a week.   Most weeks I will make a big pot on soup on the weekend and we will have it for dinner one night then for lunch several days during the week.

I usually make rolls or we have bread whenever I serve soup.  It’s one of those things we just need to have whenever we are enjoying soup.

So when I was telling my husband that we were having soup twice this week and I was going to make sourdough rolls he suggested that we have the soup in bread bowls one night.  I haven’t had a good bread bowl in forever so I was excited to try my hand at making my own.

A bowl with dough burst out and over the top of it.

I found several recipes for making them but the one I chose had an option to add yeast to speed up the process so that’s the one I went with.  You need several cups of sourdough starter so I had to start early in the morning so I could feed my starter and have enough of it to make this recipe.


  • yeast (optional)
  • warm water
  • sourdough starter
  • flour
  • sea salt

To make the bread bowls I first combined the yeast and warm water and let it sit.   Then I added my starter and mixed well.  If I wasn’t using yeast I would combine the warm water with the sourdough starter.

I added in the salt then began adding flour by half cups to the mixture in my bowl.   I ended up adding 4 cups of flour before it wasn’t feeling sticky anymore.

A cookie sheet with parchment paper on it and 8 bread bowls rising before baking.

I turned the dough onto a floured surface and began to knead it.  I ended up adding over another cup of flour while kneading the dough in order for it to become soft and smooth.

Once it was kneaded I put it in a greased bowl, covered it, and let it sit to rise.   My dough ended up rising way above the bowl and was huge!

I punched the dough down and then divided it.  You can either make 9 smaller bread bowls or 6 large bread bowls.   I opted for the smaller bread bowls so I divided it into 9 pieces and shaped each piece into a round disk shape and put it on a parchment lined cookie sheet.

Then I covered it again and let them rise.   After rising a second time I preheated the oven to 450 degrees and placed a cake pan filled with water on the bottom rack.

Right before placing the bread into the oven I scored an X on the top of each one and then put them in.  They got really tall in the oven and turned a nice golden brown color.  Mine were finished in 22 minutes.

Can I make the bread bowl with yeast?

Yes.   I have included directions for making it strictly with sourdough starter but I’ve also included directions for making it with sourdough starter and a bit of yeast.  The difference is using yeast makes the bowls ready to bake a lot sooner.

Pin Image: A cookie sheet topped with six golden brown bread bowls, text, A plate topped with a hollwed out bread bowl filled with creamy broccoli cheese soup and sprinkled with cheddar cheese.

How do I score the sourdough bowls?

I like to use a paring knife to score my bread because it is sharp and short so I don’t cut too deeply into the dough.   Only score the dough right before it goes into the oven otherwise your bowls will lose their shape.

Do I have to put a pot of water in the oven?

You don’t have to but then the outside of your bread bowls won’t be nearly as crisp.   The water helps to steam the bread which gives it the soft, pillowy interior along with the crisp exterior.

What type of soup goes well in a bread bowl?

Soups that are creamy like cream of crab or clam chowder are often popular choices to go in a bread bowl.  Other popular selections are broccoli and cheese soup or French Onion soup.  You can put any soup you would eat with bread or roll into a bread bowl.

These bread bowls are really sturdy and they held up well to the soup.   I cut a big hole in the top and then hollowed out the insides leaving about a half inch of bread inside.

A plate topped with a hollwed out bread bowl filled with creamy broccoli cheese soup and sprinkled with cheddar cheese.

I served the top of the bowl and the bread I scooped out on the side so that we could dip those bread pieces into the soup.  Since I opted for the smaller bowls I placed the bread bowls into a soup bowl then ladled in the soup so that it overflowed into the bowl.

This was a fun way to eat the soup.   I was glad I made the smaller bowls because they are very filling.  I was also able to wrap the bowls in plastic wrap, then foil, and place in a freezer bag so that I could freeze half of them to use later.  You can freeze them for up to two months.

Soups to Enjoy in a Bread Bowl

A list of soups that work well in a bread bowl.

If you’ve tried my Sourdough Bread Bowls or any other recipe on Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks please take a minute to rate the recipe and leave a comment letting me know how you liked it. I love hearing from you! You can FOLLOW ME on:

A plate topped with a hollwed out bread bowl filled with creamy broccoli cheese soup and sprinkled with cheddar cheese.

Sourdough Bread Bowls

Yield: 8 bread bowls
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 4 hours 3 seconds
Total Time: 5 hours 5 minutes 3 seconds

Delicious Sourdough Bread Bowls are sturdy enough to hold a hot bowl of soup and have a crisp exterior with a soft and slightly tangy interior.


  • 1 Tablespoon yeast (optional)
  • 1 1/2 c. warm water
  • 2 c. bubbly, active sourdough starter
  • 1 Tablespoon sea salt
  • 4-8 c. flour


  1. Place the yeast and warm water in a large bowl and let sit five minutes.
  2. Add in the sourdough starter and mix well to combine. (If not using yeast simply mix the water and sourdough starter together.)
  3. Add two cups of flour to the mixture and mix well.
  4. Begin adding more flour a half cup at a time, mixing well after each addition until the dough comes together and isn't too sticky.
  5. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead the dough for 10 minutes, adding additional flour as needed.
  6. Put the dough into a greased bowl, turning once, and cover.
  7. Allow the dough to double in size. If you used yeast this will take around two hours. If you did not use yeast this will take 4-6 hours.
  8. Once the dough has double punch it down and turn it out onto a cutting board. Divide it into 6 pieces for larger bread bowls or 8 pieces for smaller bread bowls.
  9. Line a bake sheet (or 2) with parchment paper. Shape the 6 or 8 pieces into the shape of a bread bowl and place on the parchment paper.
  10. Cover and let the bread bowls double in size. If you used yeast this will take about 1 hour. If you did not use yeast it will take 2-3 hours.
  11. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place a pan of water on the bottom rack of the oven.
  12. Just before you put the bread bowls into the oven slash a half to quarter in deep X on the top of each one. Then quickly place the cookie sheet into the oven.
  13. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and if you take a bowl out and knock on it it sounds hollow.
  14. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  15. Store in an air tight container on your counter for 3-4 days or wrap in plastic wrap then in foil and place in freezer bags to freeze for later.


Recipe from Back to our Roots

A close up of a golden brown bread bowl on a cookie sheet.

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