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Overnight Sourdough English Muffins – A Long Fermentation for Better Digestibility

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I bet you can guess why I love English muffins!

Yep, all those nooks and crannies, little empty pools, perfect for catching all the melted butter!

A collage of stacks of English muffins with text overlay.

This easy recipe ferments and rises overnight at room temperature so you awaken to a soft, manageable dough.

Stacks of English muffins spread with jam and butter.

In the morning roll out the dough, cut out the muffins, preheat the griddle, cook these little sourdough puffers low and slow, and voilà, a beautiful butter-holding breakfast!

A close-up of stacks of English muffins with jam and butter.

What Should You Eat on These Sourdough English Muffins?

An English muffin spread with raw butter and jam.

If you are passionate about real food and love to make your own, try making my real Cultured Raw Butter.

For a special treat add a foraged jam or jelly like this immune-boosting Elderberry Jelly from Practical Self Reliance.

Or maybe you have some wildflowers in your yard? Try a very unique Wildflower Jam from Nitty Gritty Life.

Love the simple things in life? Me too. Nothing beats a buttery sourdough English muffin with Honey Sweetened Strawberry Jam like the one found at Texanerin Baking!

Try these muffins as the bread for an egg sandy with this delicious Pastured Pork Breakfast Sausage.

Or try them as the base for every kid’s favorite “Engamuff pizza!” Just spread each half with tomato sauce, mozzarella, and a few favorite toppings and bake at 375ºF until the cheese is golden and bubbly.

Whatever You Top Them With, These Overnight Sourdough English Muffins Are Sure to Become a Family Favorite!

A plate of English muffins with text overlay.

Overnight Sourdough English Muffins

Overnight Sourdough English Muffins

Yield: 2 Dozen Muffins
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

An easy to work with, traditional sourdough English muffin, perfect for holding a variety of toppings (like butter!)



The Night Before

  1. In a large bowl with plenty of room for proofing, gently mix all ingredients either by hand or in a stand mixer until a smooth sticky dough is achieved.
  2. Cover the bowl and let it proof at room temperature overnight, 8 to 12 hours.

The Next Morning

  1. With wet hands, do one series of stretch and folds around the dough in the bowl, deflating the dough, and loosely preshaping it into a ball. Wait 5 to 10 minutes before continuing.
  2. Generously flour your work surface.
  3. Turn the dough out on the floured surface and pat flour onto both sides.
  4. Pat or roll the dough into a 3/4-inch-thick sheet. Add more flour if you notice sticking.
  5. Use a large biscuit cutter to cut out as many muffins as possible. Make sure they are floured on the bottom and move them off to the side of your work surface to rest.
  6. Gather the remaining dough and brush off any loose flour. Shape the dough into a ball and re-roll it to 3/4-inch thickness. Cut out the muffins and set them aside. Repeat this step one more time if necessary.
  7. Let all the muffins rest for 30 minutes.
  8. Preheat a large cast-iron griddle to medium-low. Make sure it is thoroughly heated through.
  9. Add the muffins to the griddle with an inch of space around each. Cook them for 5 to 7 minutes per side. They should be golden to dark brown and fully puffed when done. Cool them on a wire rack before slicing.


These muffins freeze really well and defrost quickly!

For a longer fermentation, the dough can be refrigerated after the initial proofing for up to 72 hours.

A collage of stacks of English muffins with text overlay.


Wednesday 21st of September 2022

Hi. Can I use pasteurized milk? If so can that be left to ferment at room temperature?

Butter For All

Tuesday 27th of September 2022

Hey Sandra!

No one I know has ever had a problem using pasteurized milk. The sourdough fermentation process will inhibit bacterial growth, But you have to make that call for yourself! I hope you'll try the recipe. If you are nervous, just do a few hours at room temp and then a slower rise under refrigeration.

Hope that helps!



Friday 24th of June 2022

I decided to refrigerate the dough. Should I let it come to room temperature before doing the stretch and folds?

Butter For All

Wednesday 29th of June 2022

Hi Marianne!

Yes, definitely let to come to room temp!


Wednesday 22nd of June 2022

I just realized I am out of bread flour. If I were to use AP, how will the muffins be different? Thank you.

Butter For All

Wednesday 29th of June 2022

Hi Marianne!

All-purpose flour will work just fine. Bread flour has slightly more protein, so will make a little more gluten, therefor rising higher, but it won't be a drastic difference. Typically AP an d bread flour can be interchanged without issue.

Happy Baking!



Monday 28th of February 2022

This was my first attempt at English muffins, and I was a little nervous. A couple of issues, that maybe you can help me with. They didn't have but a few nooks and crannies, but the taste was fantastic. Also, when I checked the dough in the morning, the top was quite dry, almost hard in places. I've had really dried out dough on a different recipe in the past, so I dampened the towel, and I think it helped. After 12 hours it was not fully doubled, my kitchen is quite cool overnight. They puffed up nicelyin the pan, fully cooked, and golden brown. So, a warmer place to rise? A longer rise? I'd love to try again. Thanks for any help you can provide.

Donna-the newbie sourdough baker

Butter For All

Thursday 3rd of March 2022

Hi Donna!

First, welcome to the club! I'm so happy you are trying sourdough and finding my recipes.

This definitely sounds like an issue with the strength of your starter. With newer starters it's important to use it frequently or feed it up several times before starting a bigger batch of dough. You want the starter to be super active and bubbly! I think your intuition on a warmer longer rise is appropriate. You may need to just let them muffins proof longer after shaping so they develop more gas before baking. also, I always use an air tight seal on my proofing bowl overnight. Saran wrap (which you can reuse), a lidded bowl, or silicone bowl covers are my favorites. If you are using a flour sack towel definitely make sure it is completely saturated with water and then wrung out gently.


Thursday 3rd of February 2022

Mixed these up last night and finished them this morning - about 12 rise time - and they are excellent! I manage a rural B&B and like to make as much on-site as I possibly can. This recipe will be in my most used list! I have been using sourdough more than 50 years and I'm thrilled with all the innovative new recipes I'm finding lately. Thank you so much from an old gal who will never tire of learning new tricks.

Butter For All

Tuesday 15th of February 2022

Hi Peggy!

Wow, such a nice comment! I'm so happy you were so pleased with these muffins! I'd love to come stay in your B&B! Where are you located? Feel free to leave a link so other readers can go visit you too!!!!



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