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Sourdough Discard Garlic Knots

These fluffy garlic knots are a delicious way to use up your sourdough discard! Plus, they only take 8 ingredients to make.

Garlic knots in a large cast iron pan on a cooling rack next to dipping sauce

Hi! Hello! Wow! January was way chaotic, but I’m back with a new recipe for the blog. And actually, I’ve posted a couple of new recipes exclusively to my instagram so you should definitely check out the Instant Pot Mushroom Lentil Stew and the Citrus Pecan Bread that I made for partnerships. Even though I took a lil’ blogging break, I did make some sourdough, so I’ve acquired more sourdough discard in the process.

ingredients in metal and glass bowls on a cutting board

Now, that leads me to these garlic knots! I had actually started developing this recipe last year, when I got a new pizza oven. It first started as a pizza dough, but I’d usually have some left over and would make garlic knots with them because who doesn’t love knots? I figured I’d actually solidify the knot recipe, since I already have a sourdough flatbread on here (though different), and share them with y’all!

collage of making sourdough discard pizza dough

Substitutions + Tips/Info:

  • Sourdough discard – this is necessary for this particular recipe, but if you don’t have any, try modifying my cinnamon knots recipe to be savory. Sourdough discard is the remnants of starter that does not get re-fed, and is usually saved in the fridge.
  • Bread flour – this is a higher protein flour that provides a really great texture in pizza/garlic knot dough. It can be found at most grocery stores.
  • Instant yeast – I keep a jar of this in my fridge for long-term storage, and like it because you don’t need to bloom it before using in a recipe, like active dry yeast. But, it can be subbed out with ADY in a ratio of 1:1.25, though some sites say it can be 1:1, just needs more rising time.
  • Olive oiltechnically you could make these knots oil-free, and mix the garlic with aquafaba to coat the knots, but the crunch won’t be the same. Delicious still? Yes, but not the same.
  • Garlic powder – now, I know garlic knots usually use fresh garlic, but I find the balance between baking the knots through, and not burning the minced garlic (therefore making it bitter) is pretty dodgy. So, I prefer to use a mix of garlic powder and salt, but you can do whatever you please.
  • Vegan cheese shreds – parmesan or mozzarella-style shreds are both great on these! I did end up using Daisy’s Italian blend in this case and it was great.
  • Dipping sauce – in the recipe card I’ve included my Pizza Sauce recipe from Vegan Yack Attack’s Plant Based Meal Prep, but you can use your fave marinara to short-cut the process.
collage of assembling garlic knots

More Sourdough Discard Recipes:

garlic knots before being baked
Thick marinara sauce in a small sauce pan
Yield: 12 knots

Sourdough Discard Garlic Knots

Garlic knots in a large cast iron pan on a cooling rack next to dipping sauce

These fluffy garlic knots are a delicious way to use up your sourdough discard! Plus, they only take 8 ingredients to make.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Proofing Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes


For the knot dough:

  • 6 ounces (177 ml) warm water
  • 1/2 cup (135 g) sourdough discard
  • 2 cups (285 g) bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon (3 g) instant yeast
  • 1 teaspoon (7 g) sea salt

For the garlic sauce

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cup (40 g) vegan parmesan or mozzarella shreds
  • Optional, minced parsley or basil for garnish

Optional dipping sauce (or 1 cup of your favorite marinara)*

  • 3 tablespoons (48 g) tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 15-ounce (425 g) can tomato sauce
  • 2 teaspoons (9 g) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • Pinch salt
  • Pinch black pepper


  1. For the knots, in a large mixing bowl, place water and sourdough starter, whisking to combine. Then, add bread flour, instant yeast, and salt to the bowl, and mix until it creates a shaggy dough. Cover and let sit for 10 minutes to allow the gluten to hydrate/develop, then knead for 2 minutes. If the dough is too tacky/hard to work with add 1-2 tablespoons flour and knead until well-mixed. You want the dough to be hydrated but not pulling apart too easily.
  2. Cover bowl with plate and set bowl in a warm place for the first proofing. For this, if my kitchen is under 75F (24C), I turn on my oven light and store the bowl in there (temp is typically 80F or 27C), to expedite the rise. Once the dough has doubled in size, which should take about an hour or so if in a warm area, remove the covering.
  3. Dust your work surface with flour and punch the air out of the dough. Cut your dough into 12 even pieces (about 50g each), then shape them into roughly 8x1-inch (20x2.5 cm) logs, then tie each one into a loose knot. Place them in a large cast iron skillet or on a baking pan, that has been brushed with a thin layer of olive oil. Cover them with a warm, damp towel and let them rise for another 30 minutes, or until they are a little less than double in size.
  4. In the last 10 minutes of rising, preheat oven to 425F (220C or gas mark 7), and in a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil, garlic powder, and salt until combined. Once knots have risen, brush garlic oil mixture over the tops of them, and sprinkle with cheese shreds. Bake for 23-28 minutes, or until lightly browned on the top. (If making sauce, do this while the knots are baking) Once baked, take out of oven and let cool for at least 5-10 minutes before serving. (sprinkle with herbs if desired)
  5. For the sauce, in a small pot, heat the tomato paste and garlic over medium heat until the mixture begins to brown and sizzle, about 2 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, sugar, onion powder, dried oregano, and dried basil and cook, stirring often, until warmed through, 3 to 5 minutes longer. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Store in the refrigerator for up to 7 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.


*This sauce recipe will make more than you need so you can freeze the extra as directed.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 knot with sauce

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 164Total Fat: 4gSodium: 500mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 6g

Did you make this recipe?

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Garlic knots in a large cast iron pan on a cooling rack next to dipping sauce

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Thursday 29th of February 2024

What are your thoughts on using more discard and less water and flour?

Jackie @ Vegan Yack Attack!

Friday 1st of March 2024

I think that could work! The texture may change a little bit depending on what flours you use to feed your starter.

Sam Strobel

Thursday 30th of March 2023

Made these for dinner tonight and they were really good! The only thing I did differently was using AP flour instead of bread flour, because I was out. Still came out great! Will definitely be making again, thank you!

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