I seem to have an unlimited supply of sourdough discard, and these rye and spelt sourdough crackers are our favourite thing to make with it. With piles of flavour from whole grain flour, olive oil, and any variety of toppings, they’re a great easy bake.
Crackers sometimes feel like a bit much work for not much payoff, but like most things, they’re phenomenal when made from scratch. A little rolling and cutting is all it takes for some truly excellent crackers.
I’ve topped these with edible flowers (pansies and borage) from the garden, fresh dill, and chives. I equally love oregano and thyme or sesame seeds as a topping, but edible flowers are beautiful and suit the season so perfectly.
If you, too, have an excess of discard from feeding your starter, give them a try. These are adapted from our basic sourdough crackers on Baked.
- Spelt Flour: whole grain, but light (white) spelt can be used.
- Rye Flour: whole grain here too – I grind both the flours in my mill at home and don’t sift them.
- Sea Salt: a lot of cracker recipes call for flake salt but I think it’s a pretension – fine grain salt is more common in the average kitchen and if anything, provides a more even flavour.
- Sourdough Starter: rye, spelt, or any other kind of (gluten) starter will be fine.
- Olive Oil: the recipes uses quite a bit so go with one you like.
- Herbs: or spices, or seeds, or whatever you’d like to top your crackers with.
Notes and Substitutions
Any whole grain flours can be used in place of spelt and rye, including 100% of either rather than a blend. I haven’t tried making these with GF flour because I don’t have a gluten-free starter.
You will need to roll the crackers out between two sheets of parchment paper (or some kind of reusable baking mat) as the dough is on the sticky side. The thinner, the better, though we’re not going so far as to use a pasta roller or anything.
Splitting the dough in two parts exactly fills my large oven-width baking sheets. It should be the right size for your largest sheets – if you just have smaller ones, split the dough into three instead so it can be rolled out as thinly.
Brushing oil over the top of the crackers is what makes the toppings stick, so don’t skip this step. While herbs and edible flowers are both beautiful and delicious, seeds, spice mixes, or plain salt are all good too.
The dough can be refrigerated for up to 48 hours before baking. The taste will become more noticeably sour if it rests for any length of time, and the age of your discard will make a difference to the flavour as well.
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Sourdough Rye and Spelt Crackers
- 200 grams sourdough discard*
- 55 grams olive oil, plus extra for brushing
- 75 grams spelt flour**
- 75 grams rye flour
- ½ teaspoon sea salt plus extra for topping
- Herbs and/or seeds for topping
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Add the discard and olive oil to a large bowl and whisk until fully combined.
- Add the spelt flour, rye flour, and salt to the mixing bowl. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to stir until a shaggy dough forms.
- Tip the dough out onto a work surface and knead several times, until a smooth, soft dough*** forms. You shouldn’t need extra flour as the oil will keep it workable.
- Divide the dough into two halves and flatten each into a disc.
- Place one half of the dough between two sheets of parchment paper. Use a rolling pin to roll it as thin as possible, to around 30cm (12 in.) on the long edge (as long as this will fit onto your baking sheet).
- Remove the top piece of parchment and brush the top of the rolled out dough with about a teaspoon of olive oil.
- Top with herbs/seeds, then place the parchment back down and gently roll over to press the toppings into the crackers.
- Place the rolled-out dough onto a large baking sheet, using the bottom piece of parchment as a pan liner. Remove the top piece of parchment.
- Cut the crackers into small squares. A pizza cutter is ideal for this.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes, turning once if your oven bakes unevenly. Remove from the oven and cool fully on the baking sheet.
- Repeat with the second half of the dough**** and store the cooled crackers in an airtight container for up to one week.