Sourdough

10 Clever Names for Your Sourdough Starters

When you bring a new pet into your home, what's the first thing you do? Name it!

Given that sourdough starters are kind of like pets (they do require attention and regular feedings, after all), it not too surprising that while covering Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice in our Baking Club this month, we learned that members have a lot of clever names for their starters, like Emilio Yeastevez, Carrie Breadshaw, and more. Here are the stories behind some of our favorites:

Feeed me. Photo by Rocky Luten
  • Kirsten Collins: I’m honestly not sure how I thought of Rye Breadbury, I’m not normally that punny. But he started off with pumpernickel flour so I wanted something to commemorate that.

  • AnnaMarie MacLean: Clint Yeastwood because I either heard it somewhere or stumbled upon it myself and it cracked me up.

  • Taylor Ashlock: Mine is Levi because we have two seminary graduates in this house so Biblical names are everywhere. Also because I thought it was a funny play on words like leavening and levitate, levity, etc.

  • Cathy Guinan: Love of My Life is decades old sourdough

  • Ashley Ferrer: Brady, because I started it after the Patriots advanced to the Super Bowl. (Heidi Walth Furth's quip in response: And your dough never deflates?)

  • Nicole Kriedeman: Mine is named Audrey. She is 16 months old and I named her after Audrey in the Little Shop of Horrors since I have to feed her every day.

  • Stephanie B: Mine is Berry because I used the yeast on wild black raspberries to get it going. Is most of the microbial community now maintained by whatever is in the flour I feed it with? Sure, but at one point there was some wild berry yeast in there.

  • Corey Cramer: Augustus Gloop. Always been a huge fan of Willy Wonka and it's both very sticky and amorphous.


If you don't have a sourdough starter of your own yet, read up on how to take care of it—you'll just need 5 minutes a day, or less. (And don't forget to give it a good name!)

Does your sourdough starter have a name? Tell all in the comments!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Dawna
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    Becky White
I like esoteric facts about vegetables and think ambling through a farmers market is a great way to start the day. My first cookbook, available now, is called Cooking with Scraps.

43 Comments

Dawna July 21, 2020
I have 4-
Jane Dough- 10 grain flour
John Dough- whole wheat
Cinderella- (she came from mostly discards & turned out to be the “princess”)
The Bitch- because she was always overflowing the jar! AP & Emmer wheat flour
 
Richard B. June 25, 2020
I just started last week, but I've decided on Dwight David Eisenflour (Ike for short).
 
LVPHOTOGUY June 14, 2020
My second attempt at a starter is now 7 weeks old and I needed to go obscure for a name.
As a fan of “Criminal Minds”, I named it after Garcia’s computer, “Persephanie“.
My wife does not understand but loves the sourdough treats made from her discards.
 
Wildbill May 1, 2020
Froggy is my principal sourdough. The name comes from “The Wind in the Willows”. Mole and Mr Toad are my other two based upon their characteristics.
 
Becky W. April 29, 2020
Mine is Sally Sourdough, affectionately known as Sal and christened by my daughter.
 
Daniel P. April 20, 2020
I named mine John B. KrasinskYEAST aka Jim Halpert. 4 days old so far.
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. April 21, 2020
I think that counts as Some Good News, for sure!
 
brhc9900 March 31, 2020
mine is "wild thang" since I grew he/she/it from wild caught yeast in my kitchen. on day 6 and it's turned the corner from a weird blob that smelled like school paste to something that has a smell I can't describe yet. not yucky, just different
 
Christine L. January 10, 2020
Mine is also called Audrey from Little Shop of Horrors....I followed the instructions in Nancy Silverton’s La Brea Bakery using grapes....she wasn’t pretty at the start and needed lots of attention.
 
Jane October 8, 2018
Hi everyone! I'm new to the site and to sourdough making, and have only just (3 days ago) given birth to my starter. I've decided to call her Blodwen which means white flower in Welsh. My OH is Welsh and it's the closest I could get to a pretty name that resembled anything "white flour"esque😂
 
Grant September 14, 2018
I named mine "Flour of Power"
 
Melinda September 9, 2018
I was looking for a name to remind me of my mother who gave me my love for baking. I came up with Momma Mia.
 
Melissa S. June 7, 2018
My starter's name is Jagger with their hit single "Starter me up"
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. June 8, 2018
Ha, nice one!
 
Sonia June 3, 2018
I named mine Bubbles 😁
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. June 3, 2018
Cuuute!
 
GILBERTO A. June 1, 2018
we have two Dionysus & Stiff
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. June 1, 2018
Two starters! Doubly impressive.
 
GILBERTO A. June 2, 2018
Dionysus is for savory breads & Stiff Is an osmotolerant sourdough for sweet breads we learnt it in Modernist Bread
 
My starter is named Percy Sludge after soul and gospel singer Percy Sledge. I love to listen to music when I’m in the kitchen (thank you Amazon Alexa, no more floury fingers on my phone to change music!)
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 29, 2018
I can't get over all of the great names!
 
amanda R. May 26, 2018
I'm on day 3 of my first sourdough starter, so this is timely. But how to choose? So many clever names!
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 27, 2018
It's going to be a tough choice for sure. Please report back with your selection!
 
Matthew C. May 25, 2018
The Clint Yeastwood thing is so funny. Currently I'm feeding Little Bread Rising Hood.
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 25, 2018
So many clever names, love it!
 
Keith May 25, 2018
I named mine Yolanda the yeast monster. My wife thinks I'm crazy. 😁
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 25, 2018
I think it'd be crazy not to give it a fun name!
 
Sing-Yi F. May 25, 2018
My sourdough starter is fondly known as Sir Mix-a-Lot!
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 25, 2018
So fun!
 
Jared K. May 25, 2018
I'm scared to put mine out there, but I was brainstorming good bread/yeast puns and thought of Ned Starch. Then in a mind blowing epiphany realized I could get the double pun with Lord Breaddard Starch.
 
Author Comment
Lindsay-Jean H. May 25, 2018
Haha that's great!