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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.


Sunday 7th of January 2024

Beginner sourdough baker here. I have tried loaves but have decided that bagels, EM, pretzels are more my success stories. This recipe is perfect. Like a few others that have commented, I should have rolled my dough thinner and used an actual cutter not a cup. Overall I am pleased with my attempt with this recipe and will definitely try again.

Butter For All

Wednesday 24th of January 2024

Hi Robin!

I LOVE hearing about your success! I'm wondering if you've tried my Butter Top Sandwich Loaf? This is a great loaf for beginners and like most (but not all) of my recipes it has an overnight bulk ferment that can be helpful when you have a young starter.


Tuesday 2nd of January 2024

I am not the best sourdough baker, as I have not been doing it for long. This is my 4th attempt at English muffins. Each one was acceptable and delicious but this recipe perfected them! The crumb was outstanding. I didn't get 2 doz (17 to be exact) but I know I could have rolled them thinner as they puffed up a lot and I don't have a biscuit cutter so I used a glass with "close enough" dimensions. Next time I am certain I will get the correct amount. This one is going in the file!!

Butter For All

Saturday 6th of January 2024

Hi Kim!

Well done! I love stories like yours. It usually just takes some time to find a baker whose style resonates with you. I hope you'll try a few more of my recipes. Thanks so much for leaving feedback!

Happy baking, Courtney


Monday 1st of January 2024

I read all the reviews/comments after my friend made these and highly recommended. I am an avid baker and I could not have been more disappointed. I followed the recipe to the letter and I knew the minute I looked at the bread dough in the morning this was going to be a mess. And it was. It was like watery glue. I did what I could but I knew there would be no rolling this out and being able to cut muffin rounds out of it. What a mess. I threw it all in the garbage. Any ideas? Suggestions?

Butter For All

Wednesday 24th of January 2024

Hey DD,

I'm so sorry to hear this. If you felt confident in the dough when you mixed it, and it wasn't wet/messy before the bulk ferment the your dough could have over proofed or been broken down by an acidic starter. If you think that's what happened, you can shorten the fermentation time, or do your bulk ferment in the refrigerator. If that's not the case, you can certainly always add a little extra flour, and this dough should be pretty sticky. It takes a lot of flour on your work surface to keep it from sticking while shaping. Even if the dough is especially wet, I've just patted it out instead of rolling, which works well. I'm sure you know, being an avid baker, that sourdough is all about adjustments and instinct. Recipes should be looked at as guides, but not absolutes! I really hope you'll give it a second attempt. If you need to add a bit of flour when mixing, to get the dough to a comfortable consistency, just go for it. You can't mess it up! But remember, to get good nooks and crannies, you want as high a hydration dough as comfortable.

Best of luck on your next batch (if you try again),


Oh, and a lot of times dough can be salvaged. Pour that dough out on a parchment lined pan and bake it off as a pizza crust, or you could look at it as a giant starter, add more flour, proof again, and make loaves, or add milk and eggs and butter and make pancakes!

Jeanette T

Sunday 25th of June 2023

I apologize if someone else has asked this but why no fat (butter, oil, etc) added ?

Also, I’ve read that EM should be covered with a lid, for awhile, when cooked on a griddle to help them puff up. Do you know if that would be helpful?

Thanks so much for your recipe as I’ll be making these next week and will report back.

Butter For All

Saturday 1st of July 2023

Hi Jeanette!

The recipe is mostly hydrated with whole milk which adds a decent amount fat already. And because fat will shorten gluten strands, I find I like the texture of these muffins as is. They produce a lot of nice nooks and crannies. But you are free to add melted butter to the recipe to see if you like the results. I think covering them is a great idea, I've seen people do that, but never really needed to myself. I think it helps a lot, getting the muffin cooked through if the dough is thicker. But because I make thinner muffins I have never needed the additional covering.

Can't wait to hear how it goes!



Saturday 24th of June 2023

A-freaking-mazing. Only the second thing I have made with my inherited starter and it was out of this world. The comments were very helpful as were your other posts about caring for a start. My starter was probably at 100% but very runny and it still turned out perfectly. I did have to finish them in the oven but mostly because I didn’t measure the thickness and only got 18 so they were probably too thick. I topped mine with mayo, fresh marinated tomatoes, fresh chives, and bacon. 10/10 the best thing I’ve eaten in a very long time.

Butter For All

Saturday 1st of July 2023

Hi Jenay!

You sound like a seasoned pro already! I love how you were able to course correct on your own, finishing them off in the oven. Well done! Thanks so much for the very nice feedback!


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