Soft White Sandwich Bread
Make your own soft white sandwich bread easily with only a few staple ingredients! This bread is tender and delicious, and perfect for sandwiches, toast, and more.
If you think homemade sandwich bread is too difficult to make, then think again! All you need is a handful of ingredients you probably have in your kitchen, a few active minutes to mix and knead it all together, and some rest time to let the yeast work its magic.
And if you’re still intimidated, and need a little extra help and encouragement, I have step-by-step photos, instructions, and tips to make sure your loaf comes out perfect!
My family LOVES this bread so much (it’s so much better than store-bought!) that I try to make it as often as I can. I promise you’ll love it too!
Oh, and psst I have a 100% whole wheat bread that we love just as much.
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Bread flour
Do I have to use Bread Flour?
Bread flour is milled from wheat with a higher protein content, which is preferred for bread baking. Protein provides strength to the dough and enables loaves of bread to rise high.
In a pinch you can use all-purpose flour in this recipe, just know that your results may not be the same. I highly encourage you to use bread flour! You can find it in the baking aisle of all grocery stores.
How to Make Soft White Sandwich Bread
1. Warm liquid ingredients. Combine water, honey, and butter in a small saucepan and heat to 120-130°F.
2. Combine dry ingredients. Combine 3 cups of the bread flour, salt, and yeast in a bowl of a stand mixer, or a large bowl if kneading by hand.
3. Mix warm and dry ingredients. Add warm liquids to the bowl with the dry ingredients and combine to make a wet dough.
4. Add more flour and knead. Add remaining flour ¼ cup at a time while kneading with a dough hook, until dough is thick and elastic and no longer sticks to your fingers when pressed. You may not need all 4¼ cups flour, or you may need more.
5. Let rise. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place somewhere warm to rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
6. Shape. Gently punch down risen dough and shape into a ball. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to a rough rectangle 9 inches wide. Roll the dough up into a log and transfer to a greased 9×5-inch bread pan.
7. Rise again. Cover with greased plastic wrap and place somewhere warm to rise until doubled again, about 30 minutes. Dough will rise higher than the top of the pan. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F.
8. Bake. Brush the top of the dough with an egg wash made with 1 egg + 1 tablespoon water, then bake the bread until the top is golden brown and bread is baked all the way through, about 35 minutes.
9. Cool. Let the loaf of bread cool in the pan for a few minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.
Bread Baking Tips
- I prefer to use a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment to mix and knead this bread, but of course you can knead by hand. Here’s a great video to show you how to knead by hand.
- I get a lot of questions about why I don’t activate my yeast in warm water before adding it to the dry ingredients. And it’s because you don’t have to! I learned this method from Red Star Yeast and it’s how I mix all of my bread. It’s faster and easier, just make sure warmed liquids added to the dry ingredients are between 120-130°F.
- Use an instant read thermometer to make sure the liquids are at the proper temperature. Temperatures over 140°F will kill the yeast and your bread will not rise. If temperatures are too low your bread will take a lot longer to rise.
- My favorite yeast to use for bread baking is Red Star Platinum Yeast.
- The amount of flour you’ll need for your loaf will vary depending on a lot of factors. You may need more or less than 4½ cups. You’ll know you’ve added enough flour when the dough is still very soft and tacky to the touch, but you can handle it without the dough sticking to your hands. Do not add to much flour or your loaf will be dense and tough, add only as much as you need.
- I like to let dough rise in my oven. Heat the oven to its lowest setting for a few minutes, then turn it off. Place the covered dough on the center rack and close the door. More rising tips can be found here.
- The best way to store homemade bread is in an airtight plastic bag at room temperature. Bread will keep for several days. Storing bread in the fridge will cause it to stale more quickly.
- Bread freezes really well! Double wrap loaves or individual slices in plastic wrap and store in the freezer for up to a month. Thaw on the counter for several hours (for a whole loaf).
- Try my 100% whole wheat bread loaf, we love it too!
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Soft White Sandwich Bread
- 1 ½ cups water (355 ml)
- 2 tablespoons butter (28 grams)
- ¼ cup honey (60 ml)
- 4 ½ cups bread flour (540 grams)
- 2 teaspoons salt (8 grams)
- 2 ¼ teaspoon active dry yeast (1 envelope, 7 grams)
- In a small saucepan, heat the water, butter, and honey over medium heat until butter is melted. Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes (to 120-130° F).
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine 3 cups of the bread flour, the salt, and yeast. Add the liquids and mix on low until moistened.
- Continue to mix on low and add the remaining flour ¼ cup at a time until dough is firm (you might need a little more or less than 4½ total cups). Knead with the mixer for 3-5 minutes or by hand for 5-8 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic.
- Place dough in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, 1 hour. Punch down the dough, and let sit for 10 minutes.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out into a rough rectangle about 10 inches wide and 12 inches long. Roll up dough and into a greased 9x5-inch loaf pan.
- Cover with plastic wrap and let rise again until doubled again, 30 minutes.
- Bake at 375° F for 30-40 minutes, until loaf is golden brown. Let cool in pan 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to let cool completely.