The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

What size should sandwich bread be?

Plantaholic12's picture

What size should sandwich bread be?

No, not how wide is a pickle, but how wide should bread be? The humorous responses should be easy enough: wide enough to wipe your face, wide enough to hide the peanut butter, etc, etc.

I pose this question as I have been struggling with my conversion from a Kitchen Aid Pro 600 with stripped gears ( I confess, I make whole wheat bread, two loaves every two weeks, for breakfast toast, and in 80 weeks I killed my worm follower gear ) to a Bosch Universal Plus mixer.

My trials are detailed in another section of this forum, I believe I'm close to adapting.

But this question keeps popping up: how big should a slice of sandwich bread be? I want toast, whole wheat, two slices everyday with my eggs and potatoes. Most any size will do, but I want the American slice, the one that fits the toaster without trimming but sticks up tall enough that I don't burn myself.

I went to the current "source of all knowledge", google, went to the images and found the one attached to this post. There was also a photo of Billy Cystal with a head ache...why??

But there was no American Standard Measurement for a slice of sandwich bread. Like 4 1/4 by 5 3/4 by3/8 inches. Just like that.

Maybe I should start getting my compost tea brewer ready for spring. Maybe this baking avocation is too much. Maybe I'm over yeasted.

Can any one guide me to a standard loaf size, 9 x 5 x??



MisterTT's picture

Pullman pans are most often made to have a square cross-section that measures 4 by 4 inches, so that would be the "standard" American measurement of a bread slice.

I don't live in the US, or America for that matter, so the question you ask is somewhat humorous to my mind: who cares what anyone thinks the "standard" size of bread should be? Just make it the size that is best for you!

Antilope's picture

The 4" x 4" pullman pan is not the standard sandwich size to me. To me it seems somewhat small. 5" x 5" from a standard 9 x 5 loaf pan would be more of a common sandwich size. Even a 8 x 4 loaf pan would probably produce a bread slice sized 4" x 5".

gary.turner's picture

The 4×4in Pullman loaf is what is commonly labeled sandwich bread. The 4×8in loaf pan makes the traditional 1# loaf, with the height being just under 5". That size is hard to find nowadays, the 4½ ×8½in, 1.25# loaf, being the most common pan size. Again the loaf height is just under 5". You can get a 5×9 pan for 1½# loaves. The height is the same as the other loaves.

Does that help?


MangoChutney's picture

I make my whole wheat sandwich bread in a "10 x 5" pan, which is about 5" wide at the top and about 4" wide at the bottom.  I use USA non-stick steel pans.

Plantaholic12's picture

I thought tall, I meant tall, I wrote wide. But your answers are all correct, of course.

Remind me to unplug the toaster before I measure it. Thanks. 5 by 5 inches would probably work better than what I'm putting in the toaster. Of course, that will change with what part of China your toaster is made in.

So I'm looking for a five inch tall loaf from a 9x5 pan to be making "sandwich" bread. Or toast. For a certainty, Mister TT is correct in the absolute: size is in the palm of the slicer. For me, I want a slice that will hide most of a slice of baloney.

I must say that I have wondered what bread aficionados do with there bread as I haven't seen a listing for the "best" peanut butter, smoothest strawberry jam or most satisfying olive oil. Not that it's any of my business. 

Thanks for the help. Now I know I need to get at least an inch more rise from my whole wheat bread. I just have to learn how...

gmagmabaking2's picture

I like all those answers.. I mostly make round loaves, so my sandwich and toast sizes really vary as I move from the center of the bread... I cut the whole loaf across the middle and then put cut side down and slice it... so I have good sized sandwiches and itty bitty sandwiches... and chunks for the dogs and our cockatoo.... 

Obviously a relative question and a most interesting one to read what people have to say.

happy baking, Diane