Camaldoli Sourdough Starter

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Camaldoli Sourdough Starter

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Originating in Camaldoli, Italy, this sourdough starter culture has a mild pleasing taste. This is the ideal starter for making pizza dough or Italian-style bread. It is easy to use. For best results, we recommend feeding your sourdough starter weekly.

This sourdough starter is available as a dried culture. Dried sourdough starters are shelf-stable and do not have to be fed or cared for immediately. Dried sourdough starters can be ready to create baked goods within 3 to 5 days.

Detailed instructions will be included with your order. Click here to view our Camaldoli Sourdough instructions.

Click here for a comparison of our sourdough starters.


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Questions on Camaldoli Sourdough Starter

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  • From Teresa at 9/3/2014 12:44 AM
    • Hi, I am wondering what you mean by white flour, is that all purpose flour or white whole wheat?
    • All purpose flour is a good example of "White Flour". It is processed wheat flour (bleached or unbleached) without most of the bran or wheat germ.
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  • From Neville at 8/21/2014 5:36 AM
    • Can I use this starter with a gluten free flour ? Thanks
    • We recommend using the Brown Rice Sourdough starter for gluten-free flour.
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  • From Mindy at 11/2/2012 11:10 AM
    • Is this starter reusable like the buttermilk starter?
    • Yes, all of our sourdough starters are reusable and the Camaldoli has a wonderful flavor.
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  • From Melody at 5/1/2012 10:49 PM
    • Hi. I'm having trouble deciding which starter to get. The Nourished Kitchen blog that I am learning from said she prefers a white flour starter and the Parisian starter is her favorite, being pretty mild. But then I read about this Italian one being good for pizza dough and I also looked at the New England one and that sounded nice too. I would like a mildl, less sour bread, but one that is good for pizza and other things besides bread too, if possible. I once tasted something called Friendship bread, which was a kind of sourdough I think, and I loved the mild homey flavor of that. Any help would be appreciated.

    • It can be tough to decide but keep in mind that sourdough starter is very versatile and can be used to make bread, biscuits, pizza dough, cookies etc. Changing the flour and adjusting the proof time will also change the flavor. All of our sourdough articles and videos can be found here: and if you have any questions, send an e-mail to
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  • From Lute at 7/7/2011 9:19 PM
    • I bought the Camaldoli starter, and activated it per your instructions. During the first 2-3 days, it appeared vigorous, and gave off a lovely, almost flowery sourdough aroma. On the 3rd or 4th day, the bubbling vigor seemed unchanged, but the aroma became dull, such that it now smells like white flour activated with a commercial yeast; no real sour aroma. It is now roughly day 6; the vigorous activity remains constant, but the aroma still smells like flour and standard baking yeast. I haven't baked with it yet, for fear it will taste like it smells. FYI I have another starter I have been using for 6 months, and the aroma smells the same as the day I got it from a friend; very sourdough-like aroma. I have fed both starters the same flour, in a manner consistent with your instructions.

      What happened?
    • Sounds like something we might be able to help you by doing some troubleshooting. Can you please contact so we can chat about it?
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  • From Jessica at 2/16/2011 3:13 AM
    • If I buy a white-flour starter, can I feed it with other flours (ie. whole wheat, kamut, barley) without ruining it?
    • Yes, you can change flours in a sourdough starter. It's best to do it gradually, so the yeast and bacteria have a chance to get used to the new food. So, maybe the first day you replace a quarter of the flour with a new flour, and make sure the starter stays healthy. Then the next transition would be half new flour, and stabilize the starter again, etc.
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Customer Reviews

Great for pizza and sweet breads. Review by Kim

This sourdough starter really surprised me. I started with the New Zealand Rye, and that one is extremely sour! It makes awesome sourdough bread, but not so great for desserts, plain breads or pizza.

I decided to try the Camaldoli in addition. Two starters seemed like a lot to babysit (in addition to the two kefirs, veggies and booch I have going!) - but I learned these starters are two totally different animals, so to speak. I originally thought I'd decide between the two, and only keep one going - total plan change! They are so different, they have radically different uses. It's great.

The "sourdough" pizza crust from the Camaldoli isn't really sour - it's perfect for this application. It get a great crust when baked on a stone, and has a really unique "pizza house" flavor. Love it! And I still love the New Zealand Rye!

(Posted on 10/18/2014)

Delicious starter! Review by Lindsey

I have made basic sourdough bread and pizza crust with this starter. I love it! Excellent flavor! Even if I forget to feed it for a day, it always wakes right back up with one or two more feedings.

(Posted on 10/10/2014)

love this starter Review by Laurelei

This is not a super sour sourdough. It is lovely and creates delightful breads. The starter was easy to get going and it is staying strong!

(Posted on 4/14/2014)

WONDERFUL !!!! Review by Yvette

Wonderful culture. Very easy to get started and makes fabulous tasting bread. I haven't made that perfect loaf yet but I am working on it and getting closer. I am new not only to bread making but to sourdough so I won't be to hard on myself. Even though the bread didn't come out quite as planned it has had a wonderful flavor and texture. Have made pancakes and waffles and they to were also yummy.

(Posted on 4/3/2014)

Little Caesar Review by Sue

I call the Camaldoli starter, 'Little Caesar'. He's a tough character! Very active. I have had sourdough starters before, made at home. I was never very happy with these, so I went with this commercial starter. At first, I was a little OCD with getting this starter going, and then refreshing, then into the fridge. I would actually feel bad putting him into the fridge! Anyhow, now we have a system going. I'm not so manic about measuring the flour/water to get him to active status. I can 'eyeball' the measurements. The sour is pretty pronounced after a long, (24 hour) rise. Very happy with this purchase!

Response from CFH: We recommend measuring ingredients for the best results.

(Posted on 3/26/2014)

Great product! Review by Lily

I'm new to the world of sourdough, so this was a bit intimidating for me. I ordered the starter, followed the directions and BAM! I had lovely starter to work with. Crackers, waffles, pizza crust...SO Good. The starter is very resilient, and even when I neglected it for a few days, it bounced right back to life quickly with some TLC. Thanks for an outstanding product!

(Posted on 2/12/2014)

Good for beginners needs more clear directions Review by Rachel

This is my first sour dough culture. I'm proud to say that so far I haven't killed it. The culture is working well as long as I feed it correctly. I am still struggling to make "the perfect loaf" but I've only tried to batches so far. I believe that the directions could be more clear. At first I was throwing out all but 1/4 cup of the starter every time I fed it because the directions did not specify what to do. As far as the bread I have made so far, it had great flavor but the first batch did not rise correctly and dried out and the second batch rose too much. I am finding that sour dough is trickier than regular white bread. The directions should include a trouble shooting guide. All in all, I'm very pleased and so is my husband. Also, the biscuit recipe included need more salt.

(Posted on 2/7/2014)

Very active starter! Review by Jeannie

A friend of mine bought this sourdough starter and was gracious enough to share some with me once it was fully activated. I've only had it a few days and wow is it active! So many bubbles and you can actually hear it working at its peak! I've made 1 loaf so far (using the recipe included with the starter) and it was light and tasty. It was slightly sour after proofing for 10 hours. This was not only my first sourdough loaf but my first bread making experience ever! Despite my inexperience (and a few mistakes!) it is super easy to work with. Not sure what I'm going to attempt next but I'm thinking a pizza dough is in the near future!!

(Posted on 1/30/2014)

Wonderful! Review by ccwvu

Really just getting started, but I have made pancakes with extra starter and a couple cycles of bread-- both delicious. It's very tasty and not to sour, even my daughter loves it! Looking forward to exploring the many other recipes on the website to use this starter with!

(Posted on 12/17/2013)

I should have bought it sooner! Review by catholicmom24

I have tried and succeeded in making my own sourdough wild yeast starter. It died a few years ago. It was very sour.

Recently, when trying to do it again, I failed. I searched through nourishing blogs and found this website.

I bought the Camaldoli and it is wonderful. I don't like San Francisco sourdough myself. It's just too strong. I wanted something something that I could use for everything, pizza crust, biscuits, sandwhich bread.

It has the most pleasant yeasty smell and flavor. It will get stronger, of course, if you do long rises.

I don't use baking powder or baking soda for my recipes with this dough. It rises beautifully on the counter and in the refrigerator.

I did keep up with the starter activating it as directed and feeding it every 12 hours. After a month, I decided to put it in the refrigerator so I could feed it less. I took it out and put it in a warm spot until it came back to life. Then I fed it using flour and water as a part of the recipe that I was using. After 8 hours, I finished the recipe. It worked great.

Truly, a Godsend.

Thank you so much for providing it.

(Posted on 10/29/2013)

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