clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Pain Au Levain Vs Sourdough – Differences To Know

Pain Au Levain Sourdough Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

No reviews

A simple pain au levain makes the perfect sourdough recipe for first-time bakers. And here’s how to make it!

  • Total Time: 6 hrs 10 mins
  • Yield: 1 loaf 1x



For the levain

  • 60g strong white bread flour
  • 10g active sourdough starter
  • 40g of water

For the dough

  • 310g of strong white bread flour
  • 30g of rye flour
  • 7g of salt
  • 220g of water


  1. Make your levain by mixing the water, sourdough starter, and flour. Let this ferment for 10-12 hours. The levain should have doubled in size, with a stretchy texture, it should not be runny.
  2. Mix the remaining flour with the leftover water. Sprinkle salt over the dough, cover, and leave to hydrate for 30-60 minutes.
  3. Add the levain to the dough and knead for 5-6 minutes. This should depend on the temperature of your dough. The cooler your dough, the longer it will take to be ready.
  4. Let your dough ferment or rest for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  5. Then stretch and fold your dough 4 times at 30-minute intervals.
  6. Shape your dough into a loaf, and place it into a lightly floured proofing basket.
  7. Let it rest for 3 hours. Meanwhile, preheat your oven and Dutch oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  8. Score your dough, and bake in the Dutch oven with the lid on for 25 minutes.
  9. Remove the lid and continue baking for 15 minutes.
  10. Let this cool down completely before slicing.


  • The dough is pretty low in hydration, making it very easy to handle.
  • You can experiment with any type of flour you fancy, to create the loaf you desire. 
  • Author: Natasha Krajnc
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Category: bread
  • Cuisine: French/Italian


  • Serving Size: 1 loaf
  • Calories: 500 kcal
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 85 g
  • Protein: 20 g