FAQs and Recipe Additions for Amish Friendship Bread

No one has time to browse the 273 comments at my original Amish Friendship Bread post to find answers to their questions, so in an effort to put all my Amish Friendship info into one place, I spent some time yesterday copying and pasting all the best of it into this post. Read on for tantalizingly great recipe additions and helpful feedback, all from the best AFB bakers out there: my readers!

First, answers to the most commonly asked questions. Yes, you can most certainly…

  • use non-fat milk or powdered milk
  • use raw milk, just scald it slightly beforehand to inactivate some of the enzymes (thanks, Sharon!)
  • use water instead of milk (thanks, Sharon!)
  • substitute applesauce for the oil
  • use 2 or 3 eggs per batch, your bread will turn out fine, just a different consistency
  • use one large box of pudding OR two small boxes or no pudding at all, it doesn’t matter
  • use fast-rising yeast–it will not affect the outcome
  • use self-rising flour–it will not affect your outcome
  • use whole wheat flour (thanks, Sharon!)
  • no, you can’t use Splenda. Splenda is not sugar. Yeast won’t recognize it as food. Use sugar for the starter, it’s okay. Like Kombucha, the yeast eats the sugar. (thanks, Sharon!)
  • freeze your starter for up to a year (just note which day you were on when you left off, and pick it up at that same point once thawed)
  • thaw frozen starter at room temp for three hours before carrying on with recipe
  • skip a day of squishing with no problems
  • forget to add ingredients or bake EXACTLY on schedule, a day or two off won’t hurt this recipe
  • bake it in a 9×13″ pan for 35 minutes
  • bake it in a Bundt pan, not sure for this one on baking times so just watch it and use the toothpick test
  • bake it as muffins
  • bake ALL your starter by simply dividing it equally between 4 bowls then add your ingredients. Each bowl should make 1-2 loaves. Give away the baked bread and good-bye starter!

Reader’s favorite recipe additions/combos:

  • White chocolate sugar-free pudding (two small pkgs) with half a bag of white chocolate chips and a cup of dried cranberries
  • Sugar-free cheesecake pudding and butterscotch chips
  • Lemon pudding with poppyseeds, substituting lemon flavoring for vanilla (minus cinnamon-sugar topping)
  • Banana pudding, mashed banana and nuts
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries, 1 cup chopped apples, and 1 cup chopped walnuts (2 loaves worth)
  • Chocolate pudding and 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • Butterscotch pudding and 1/2 cup butterscotch chips
  • Pistachio with walnut (turns out a lovely green color!)
  • Pistachio with Marachino cherries
  • Cheesecake pudding with cranberry and walnut
  • Dried apricots, cherry craisins, and chopped almonds
  • Grated carrots, sunflower seeds, and additional spices
  • Lemon pudding with either raspberries or white chocolate chips (Lemon w/choc. chips tastes like Vanilla Wafers)
  • Blueberries with Cheesecake pudding
  • Pumpkin-spice–half a cup pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, 1/4-1/2 cup grated carrots or raisins
  • Savory Amish Friendship Bread – Omit cinnamon and sugar, add about 1 cup cheddar cheese and 3/4 pkg pepperoni, 1/2 flour and 1/2 cornmeal. 1 cup fresh corn. Serve with tomato sauce.
  • Make one with half the sugar and add lots of savory herbs, some ground beef and a taco seasoning mix instead of pudding. Great with spaghetti sauce.

Regular or Belgian Waffle recipe (from Erika)

  • 2 cups Starter
  • about 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. sugar (or less if you prefer less sweet)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda

Combine starter with enough flour for your preferred consistency. Add oil, eggs. sugar, salt and baking soda to the starter. Mix thoroughly with wooden or plastic spoon. Let the mixture rest for a little bit, maybe 10 minutes. Cook in your waffle iron. Serve with Syrup. Makes six fluffy Belgian waffles.

Website with recipes for cookies, biscuits, pancakes etc, all using Amish Friendship Bread starter

Mary’s original Amish Friendship Bread starter recipe (with all 273 comments)

Mary’s Easier Amish Friendship Bread recipe

Doesn’t it just make you want to get in on the fun? I’m on Day 6, and have BIG plans for my baking day! Please share your tips/recipe faves in comments!

118 thoughts on “FAQs and Recipe Additions for Amish Friendship Bread”

  1. I have had great sucess with a variation of the AFB, White Chocolate-Cherry. Yum! Omitting cinnamon from original recipe and using 3/4t almond extract instead of vanilla. I also add 2 boxes of French Vanilla instant pudding, a 1/2 bag of white chocolate chips, a good handful of dried cherries and a can of well drained tart cherries. Last time I made muffins I decided to add 1/2C more flour since the batter was so moist. Thay came out delicious.
    I do have a question about using a metal whisk. I have read that there is an acidic recation with the yeast and metal. What actually happens? Will it change the taste of my bread? I used metal to stir and all seemed fine?? Please explain, thanks!!

  2. Mmm, Lori, that combo is one of my favorites too! Winter is the perfect time to keep the AFB on hand, isn’t it? If your metal whisk is stainless steel, then I am pretty sure it is okay to use with AFB. Other metals do have a reaction of some kind, so they are best to avoid. Hope that helps!

  3. Thank you so much for the info…I added Self=Rising flour on day #5 and then noticed that the receipe for the cake calls for baking powder and I thought I had meesed it up.

  4. Have a question about freezing the bread. How long can you freeze it for? Also, when freezing a starter bag how long can it be in the freezer?

  5. My rule of thumb for freezing the bread is 3-6 months. I’ve had folks tell me that they’ve successfully frozen the starter for up to 1 year–can you imagine? I’ve never done that, but you should be fine up to one year!

  6. I didn’t read the first line and have refrigerated the dough for all 10 days. Today is baking day and I have put it out to get to room temp. Is it ruined or can I leave it out a couple more days and recover ingredience? Please advise ASAP

  7. Boy, I don’t know, Debbie. I think leaving it on the counter is essential for the fermenting time period. Personally, I’d try to get another starter and try again. So sorry to have to tell you that. The ingredients are probably not ruined tho, you could sure experiment and leave them out on the counter and begin again for the next 10 days?


  8. Yes…at least all the recipes I’ve used, or seen used, for AFB, feed the starter before baking. But I’m all for experimenting…if you decided to try it w/o feeding first, let us know how it works.


  9. I am curious about freezing starter for an extended period of time. How would someone verify it is “OK”? I will find out within the next 2 weeks and post…

  10. How long is an extended period of time, Ken? We have one commenter here who leaves it in for one year at a time, gets it out and bakes it up for holiday gifts…she says it works great! I’ve never left it longer than 3-5 months…

  11. I got my bag yesterday from my sister but my husband placed it on the refrigerator over night. Can I still continue? Does the process vary in any way?

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