Amish Friendship Bread Starter Recipe (Sugar-Free)

Submitted by: Friendship Bread Kitchen
Image (c) Friendship Bread Kitchen

“This sugar-free starter is the perfect alternative for those watching their sugar intake. Use with our low-sugar/diabetic-friendly Amish Friendship Bread recipes.”


1 (0.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110° F/45° C)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup milk


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes.
  2. In a 2-quart glass, plastic or ceramic container, combine 1 cup flour. Mix thoroughly with a whisk or fork.
  3. Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture.
  4. Cover loosely and let stand at room temperature until bubbly. Consider this Day 1 of the 10 day cycle. For the next 10 days handle starter according to the instructions for Amish Friendship Bread and omit the sugar when feeding on Day 6 and Day 10.

Kitchen Notes

The surface of the starter may have a chalky, powdery-like substance. If so, just stir back into the starter. Remember to leave the starter at room temperature. Drape loosely with dish towel or plastic wrap. Do not use metal utensils or bowls. If using a sealed Ziploc bag, be sure to let the air out if the bag gets too puffy. For instructions and the recipe for Amish Friendship Bread, click here.

Image Gallery

L to R: Sugar-free starter, unstirred (c) Friendship Bread Kitchen; Sugar-free starter (c) Friendship Bread Kitchen;


Recipe Tools

  • Add to favorites
  • Print
  • RSS


  1. how does the rest of the recipe work without sugar? Does using sugar-free pudding work out?

    • Thank you so much for the sugar free starter – as a diabetic it will work for me. I was wondering though, is it possible to use a whole heat flour rather than all purpose flour? I’m thinking yes since historically access to white flour is a relatively new thing.

    • Kia ora Susan,
      Thank-you soooo much for posting this sugar free recipe!! I’ve had two different friends talk to me about Amish Bread recently and today one had some for us and the children to share!! OMG YUM!! I broke our rules around cane sugar to try it as I know its taken her time to make and I’m so glad to find a version without sugar as I’ve spent a wee while this evening looking online for one and it is super simple too!
      I love all the other recieps for the starter too 😀
      ♥ ♥ ♥

  2. Mary t. Visalli says:

    I think this website is very good. Iloved the sugar free amish friendship bread it was very tastey

  3. Gail Lynch says:

    I need to get the original recipe to start a starter. Thanks a lot! Gail

  4. Sharlene Rank says:

    I, like many others in their sixties now, made this bread 30 years ago until we could make no more – froze some starter for awhile, but then threw it out; just finished the book, loved it and since I am now diabetic, will start anew in a healthy for me way. Thank you.

  5. Help! its me again….I made the most delicious sourdough bread. Its so good toasted in the morning. Now I have my started ready to go and I would like to make some low sugar recipes but I cannot find any on the site. I try and it keeps bring me to the sugarfree starter which I have already made….now I would like to bake something low or no sugar, even sugar sustitute…do we have any thing like this?

    • You can substitute cup for cup Zylitol for the sugar. I use it for everything baking or otherwise instead of sugar. You can purchase at health food stores, The Vitamin Shoppe or online. Zylitol is made from the birch tree and is very similar to sugar with out raising the glycemic index. It taste much better than splenda or stevia in the raw.

  6. Can’t wait to try this sugar free version. Love friendship bread.

  7. OMG Thank you! I have so many diabetic older ladies at church that nearly cry when I bring my various friendship breads to events that I’ve been trying to find a sugar free one. My self created recipe attempts have failed miserably so I’m trying this one. Thanks again!

  8. Hi there, I know you said that you tried this sugar free recipe w artificial sweeteners and they did not work out,did you also try w stevia which is not a chemical sweetener? Thanks! 😉

  9. Glad to find this starter- Thanks!

  10. Deb Westbury says:

    Thanks for posting a sugar free starter as well as a sugar free recipe…

  11. Marsha Null says:

    Does anyone know how many weight watcher points this bread is?

  12. Jean McLain says:

    Can you use any non dairy liquid to make the bread? I use Stevia as my sweetener for my drinks. Love it.

  13. Can Splenda be used?

  14. Leigh Mott says:

    I was wondering if the regular starter can be weaned off the sugar? A friend gave me a starter already. My husband is diabetic and getting him to eat the way he should is a challenge. He loves the sweets. If I can slowly turn my current starter into a sugar free start that would be great.

  15. I am liking this Bread a lot,,using it for every function we have lately! Thanks!

  16. Jinnie Rivera says:

    Is there a non-sweet recipe I can make sourdough bread. My starter is soooo sweet. I like it for sweet treats, but I would love to make a sourdough bread. Thanks!

  17. meghan rehberger says:

    This is great. My mom is Diabetic, and I really didn’t want her to feel left out. – she’ll love it!!! Thanks!!!

  18. I am borderline diabetic and so excited to see sugar free friendship bread. The days where it says to add sugar would you just skip the sugar and add the other ingredients?

  19. Beckie Tyrone says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe!! My son is ADHD and we are reducing his sugar and carb intake. Question…have you tried this version with Coconut Flour? (It’s less carb than regular flour)

  20. Linda Shope says:

    My Mom just gave me your website since I make so much friendship bread. I try to make as low-fat, low-sugar as possible, using egg beaters, applesauce or pumpkin for oil, and splitting sugar as half sugar, half splenda. I am glad to find the sugar-free starter, as that was the one thing I didn’t change because I was afraid it wouldn’t work right with splenda. Can’t wait to try a sugar-free starter! I’ve done many variations, some with sugar-free pudding and some regular. Favorites are butterscotch pecan, using butterscotch pudding; pumpkin with pumpkin pudding; chocolate mint with chocolate mint pudding and chocolate mint chips and gingerbread pecan with gingerbread pudding. They’re always big hits!

    • Hi Linda! Welcome to the Kitchen, and if you don’t see an AFB sugar-free recipe in the Recipe Box that you want to make, please submit one! 🙂

  21. Maureen Wakefield says:

    Can’t wait to try the sugar-free recipe – losing weight may be easier with a nice sugar free recipe!

Speak Your Mind


Hi! Just wanna make sure you're real ... *