Walnut and Oats Sourdough

I love walnuts in bread. They give an almost buttery and nutty flavor and are perfect when the bread is used for making toast. The oats add some added silky softness to the crumb and help keep the loaves moist and soft even when the bread is toasted.


Using the lazy sourdough method is actually quite simple. The real key to this method is that you can use your unfed starter straight from the fridge without the need to make a levain. There’s also no autolyse which saves about 30 minutes.

Schedule: Here’s a link to the lazy sourdough method.

The exact schedule I used is at the bottom of this post.


This recipe makes two loaves. Simply divide all the ingredients in half if you only want one loaf.


  • 800g Ardent Mills Kyrol high protein flour (14.3% protein)
  • 150g King Arthur All Purpose flour (11.7% protein)
  • 50g dark rye flour
  • 740g filtered water @ 93’F
  • 190g unfed starter straight from fridge (100% hydration)
  • 20g sea salt
  • 150g chopped walnuts (added at first fold)
  • 125g rolled oats (soaked with 125g warm water for 30 minutes… added at first fold)


After mixing the flour, starter, water and salt, I performed 4 stretch and folds within the first 2 hours, adding the walnuts and soaked oats at the first fold. It was a little difficult to get the nuts and oats mixed in well, but don’t sweat it. After the subsequent folds it will all come together.

I let the dough bulk ferment at room temperature for about 7 hours and 20 minutes. Bulk fermentation can take anywhere between 7-9 hours depending on the temperature of your kitchen and how active your culture is. My bulk ferments using this method often take a little less than 8 hours.

Once the dough had doubled, I shaped the loaves and put them in bannetons that I liberally dusted with rice flour. I added some sesame and poppy seeds to the bannetons for some extra visual appeal. The bannetons were wrapped in vegetable bags and then placed them in the fridge for a 17 hour cold proof.

One hour before baking I started preheating the oven, with dutch ovens inside, to 450’F. When it was time to bake, I took the loaves straight from the fridge and placed them in the preheated dutch ovens, gave them a quick score and then put them in the oven. The walnuts might get in the way of the scoring. If that happens, you can gently nudge the walnut out of the way and continue scoring

I baked the loaves at 450’F for 20 minutes covered, then removed the lid of the dutch ovens and baked for an additional 30 minutes.


The oven spring on these loaves was great. I was running into overproofing issues on previous batches but I think that was due to using a much larger percentage of high gluten flour. Taming that down slightly with AP and dark rye seems to put the fermentation activity in check.

The walnuts are nicely distributed throughout the loaves and the extended fermentation and proofing time helps soften them so they cut easily and don’t mess up your crumb while being sliced. The oats have fully disappeared into the flour visually, but still lend some extra smoothness and moisture.

A few of the walnuts made it to the crust, where they browned a little more than the flour, but not enough to look or taste burnt.

As with pretty much all of my cold proofed batches, there was some really nice blistering around the base of the loaves.

My Baking Notes

  • Ambient Temperature @ mixing: 65’F
  • Mixed @ 11:10am on March 1st
  • Dough was 79’F at mixing
  • 4 stretch and folds in first 2 hours
  • Started proof @ 6:35pm on March 1st
  • Preheated oven @ 10:30am on March 2nd
  • Out of fridge and into oven @ 11:20am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s