The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


cynthia7214's picture


What is the best container to use to store my sourdough starter, glass or can I use plastic?

Salilah's picture

Mine live in smallish (1litre?) square plastic food tubs with plastic lids from Lakeland


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

upper left corner... 

What you shouldn't use are jars with tight sealing screw top lids or too tight plastic seal containers, something that lets gas escape and keeps bugs out.  Wide open are easier to clean and it should hold about 5 times the amount of starter you put into it unless it is a low or no gluten flour starter that you are caging.   Many times a glass peanut butter jar with a plastic bag and just fitting rubber band work the easiest.  Gas building up inside the jar packs a good deal of pressure so loose fitting lids are ideal.  

Barbara Krauss's picture
Barbara Krauss

I keep my starters in wide-mouth Mason jars.  I bought some plastic lids for them, which I keep lightly screwed on, and I always make sure I have plenty of room for expansion.  As Mini said, at least 5 times the amount of the starter is a good rule of thumb.  I've never had a problem with too much pressure build up. I like the fact that the jars are wide enough for me to get my hand inside for cleaning, and the transparency of the glass lets me see the amount of bubble activity.  

Maverick's picture

Really there are only 3 criteria that are important (IMHO). 1. It needs to be large enough to handle the expansion. 2. The lid cannot be a really tight screw top. 3. It should be easy to get the starter out. If I had to add a 4th it would be that it should be easy to clean (think round not square, but rounded edges are okay too).

loydb's picture

From King Arthur ( They're perfect in size, and they all weigh the same, which is nice if I forget to weigh something before adding it to the container. I have anywhere from 4-6 in the fridge at any given time.

3 Olives's picture
3 Olives

I have 2 of these and need to buy 2 more. They are really nice if you have large hands.

Nickisafoodie's picture

I use a clear acrylic container with a hinged lid and rubber gasket.  While it seals reasonably tight due to gasket, is allows the gases to escape.  No micro holes to  hide bacteria given acrylic is dense.  similar containers made out of stainless steel

placebo's picture

I use one of these 0.2-liter canning jar without the gasket.

I only keep about 80 grams of starter though.

Maverick's picture

I like the air valve thing.

frankie g's picture
frankie g

I used to keep my starter in a mason jar - but it fell on the tile floor one day and that was that.  New starter.

I now use a translusent container with a lid, pictured below.


Maverick's picture

That looks like a nice container, but way to large for my daily starter. It might be nice for a build up in recipes that require more starter though.

Porkbutter's picture

I use the same containers that loydb above uses, and like them a lot. I picked up a set of three at Gordon Food Service for about $14. Other likely containers would be a plastic mayonnaise jar or the tubs that cottage cheese or yogurt comes in.

G-man's picture

Another vote for Cambro (the company that makes these specific containers). They make them smaller than those pictured above, too. I think the smallest one I have is about a quart.

I also have a couple small clear plastic squares that stack nicely, though they're not Cambro. They have rounded edges, and I tend to prefer them for starter storage personally. I wish I knew who made them.

LindyD's picture

One-quart Cambro is where my sourdough culture has lived for the past four years.  And I keep the lid on tight because I keep a small amount (around 70 grams) and there's no way the lid will be blown.   Actually, even with larger elaborations the Cambro lid stays on.  

The containers have a wide mouth and are easy to clean.

frankie g's picture
frankie g

Porkbutter (love the name by the way....)

We sell these on our site for $3.99

Frankie G