Ready to make this delicious white mountain bread from scratch instead of buying it from Publix? Follow along with this simple recipe, and you'll be able to enjoy a tasty loaf in a few hours!
Looking for more great bread recipes? Don't miss this Cuban bread or these hoagie rolls.
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Wondering what ingredients you need to make your own loaf of Publix copycat white mountain bread? Fortunately, you'll only need 6 basic ingredients.
- Bread Flour: Make sure to use bread flour instead of all-purpose. This type of flour has a higher protein content, which creates more gluten in the dough and gives the mountain bread a better rise and nicer texture.
- Yeast: I prefer to use instant (fast-action) yeast in bread recipes, as it allows one to skip the 10-minute blooming in warm water and sugar that active dry yeast requires. Feel free to use either type, though.
- Honey: This sweetens the dough and improves the texture of the mountain bread. You can substitute with an equal volume of maple syrup if you don't have any honey.
- Butter: This softens the texture and adds flavor to the bread. I like to use unsalted butter, as it allows me to control the amount of salt in my bakes.
How to Make
Gather the ingredients: flour, salt, yeast, water, butter, and honey.
- Pour the flour into the bowl of a stand mixer and add the salt and yeast on opposite sides of the bowl. Stir each one in with your finger. (This is to make sure that the salt doesn't touch the yeast directly, as it can kill the yeast.)
- Add the butter and honey, then mix with the paddle attachment on low speed until combined. Pour in half of the water and keep mixing on low speed. Gradually add more water until a somewhat sticky dough forms, and keep mixing until all the flour is picked up from the bottom and sides of the bowl.
The exact amount of water you need will vary depending upon the brand of flour you're using and the humidity in the room. If there's still flour hanging out in the bowl and the mixture looks really dry, don't hesitate to add additional water.
3. Let the dough rest, uncovered, for 10 minutes. This will make it less sticky during the kneading process. Then, knead on medium-low speed until the it cleans the sides of the bowl, but it still tacky to the touch. If the it refuses to clean the sides of the bowl, add some flour, a spoonful at a time, until it cooperates.
4. Let the dough rise in a warm place until at least doubled in size, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. (At this stage, you can put it in the fridge to rise overnight.)
5. Punch the dough down all over to knock out the pockets of gas. Fold the edges of the circle into the center to form a tight ball. Pinch the ends together, turn the mountain loaf seam side down, and let it rest for 5 minutes.
Turn the mountain bread over, flatten it slightly, and fold the edges into the center again, making sure it's quite tight. Turn it right side up and turn it, cupping your hands around the loaf as you turn to even the shape.
6. Place it seam side up in a floured banneton (if you don't own one, use a greased and generously floured bowl). Let rise at room temperature until almost doubled in size, about 45 minutes. It should slowly spring back when pressed with a fingertip.
About 20 minutes before it's done rising, preheat the oven to 450°F and slide a large pizza stone onto the middle shelf of the oven (use two baking sheets stacked on top of each other if you don't own a pizza stone).
7. Sprinkle some semolina or grits on a cake lifter or pizza peel. Turn out the moutain bread onto the prepared peel and gently massage some extra flour on top. Don't worry if it deflates a little; it will rise back in the oven. Slash with a lame (or a very sharp serrated knife) and carefully slide the loaf onto the preheated baking stone.
Bake at 450°F for 10 minutes, then bake at 425°F for another 20 minutes. The loaf should be browned and have an internal temperature of 200°F.
8. Let the mountain bread cool completely on a wire rack before slicing and serving.
White mountain bread is healthy when enjoyed in moderation. It contains a lot of carbs and not a lot of fiber since it's made from processed white flour rather than whole wheat flour.
Mountain bread often refers to a Lebanese flatbread that originated in the mountains, but we're not sure why Publix decided to call this bread mountain bread. It's likely due to the fact that the loaf resembles a mountain covered with snow.
Yes, Publix makes their bread from scratch at each bakery location. They use a mix manufactured at Publix's headquarters in Lakeland, Florida. The loaves are freshly baked throughout the day.
Per 2 ounces of mountain bread, the Publix loaf contains 160 calories and 31g of carbs and 1g of fiber. This copycat recipe contains 179 calories, 33g carbs, and 1g fiber per slice.
Leftovers: The mountain bread will keep for about 2 days at room temperature. Make sure it's sealed inside of a zip-top plastic bag to keep it moist. Don't store it in the fridge; the air in the fridge will make it go stale very quickly.
Freezing: Seal it in a zip-top plastic freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month. Thaw in a low oven, toaster, microwave, or on the counter.
- Always use bread flour. You won't get the very best results with all-purpose because it lacks the protein content.
- Feel free to mix and knead by hand if you don't have a mixer. You'll actually learn more and have more fun making it by hand.
- Let the dough rest for 10 minutes before kneading. It will improve the texture and help it not to be as sticky.
- Want a sandwich loaf? After the first rise, punch it down and shape into a rectangle the width of a loaf pan. Roll it up tightly, pinching the seam to seal and place inside the pan. Proceed with the recipe as written--omitting the part about the baking stone.
- Have leftovers? Eat within 24 hours of baking for best freshness, or seal in a zip-top freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month.
Other Yeast Breads to Try
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Easy White Mountain Bread
- 4 ¼ cups bread flour
- 2 teaspoons fine salt
- 3 teaspoons fast-action yeast
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 ¼ cups filtered water
Making the Dough
- Place the flour in the bowl of a stand mixer and add the salt and yeast on opposite sides of the bowl. Stir in each with your finger.
- Add the butter and honey and mix on low speed with the paddle attachment until blended. Pour in half of the water and mix on low speed to form a rough dough. Gradually add more water and mix until all the flour has been picked up from the bowl and a somewhat sticky dough has formed. Depending on the brand of flour you're using and the humidity in the room, you may not need all the water, or you might need a little extra.
- Turn off the mixer and let the dough rest uncovered for 10 minutes. This will help it be less sticky when it's kneaded.
- Knead with the dough hook for 5-8 minutes on medium-low speed until the dough is smooth and cleans the sides of the bowl. If it's too sticky and doesn't clean the sides of the bowl, add extra flour. The dough should also pass the windowpane test. Stretch a piece between your hands to form a windowpane. It should be translucent without breaking; if not, knead for a minute longer and check again.
- Shape the dough into a ball, put it back in the mixing bowl, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let it prove until at least doubled in size, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Alternatively, place it in the fridge to rise overnight (8-12 hours), and continue with the recipe as written the next day.
Shaping the Loaf
- Turn out the dough onto a clean, lightly floured work surface and punch it down all over to force out the pockets of gas in the dough.
- Shape it into a rough circle, then fold the edges into the center and pinch them together tightly to seal. Turn the loaf over so the seam is underneath, and let it rest for 5 minutes. Turn the loaf over, flatten slightly, and fold the edges into the middle as you did before, pinching the seam to seal. Turn the loaf seam-side down, cup your hands around the loaf, and turn it in a circle to shape it into a taut round loaf.
- Place the loaf seam side up inside a floured banneton and cover with a linen cloth or tea towel. (Use a greased and generously floured bowl if you don't own a banneton.) Let it rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending upon the temperature of the room. The dough is ready to be baked when it springs back when gently pressed with a fingertip.
- About 20 minutes before the dough is fully proved, preheat the oven to 450°F and put a large pizza stone in the oven to preheat. If you don't own a pizza stone, use two baking sheets stacked on top of each other instead.
Baking the Loaf
- Scatter some semolina flour or corn grits onto a pizza peel or cake lifter. Turn the risen loaf onto the peel and gently massage some extra flour onto the top of the loaf. Don't worry if the loaf deflates a little; it will rise back in the oven. Score the loaf in a shallow cross or decorative pattern with a lame. (Don't own a lame? Use a very sharp serrated knife.)
- Immediately slide the loaf onto the hot pizza stone. Bake the loaf for 10 minutes at 450°F, then lower the temperature to 425°F without opening the oven door and bake for another 20 minutes. The loaf should be a rich brown and have an internal temperature of 200°F.
- Let the loaf cool completely on a wire rack before slicing and serving, approximately 1 hour.
- Don't substitute all-purpose for the bread flour. Bread flour contains more gluten than all-purpose, resulting in a higher rise and more chewy texture.
- Don't have a stand mixer? You can make this recipe by hand--just mix and crush the dough with your hand instead of the paddle attachment, and knead on a lightly floured surface.
- Mix up the dough, then let it rest for 10 minutes before kneading. It will improve the texture and help it not to be as sticky.
- Don't want to have a round loaf? After the first rise, punch it down and pat into a rectangle the width of a loaf pan. Roll it up tightly, pinching the seam to seal and place inside the pan. Proceed with the recipe as written--omitting the part about the baking stone.
- Have leftovers? Eat within 24 hours of baking for best freshness, or seal in a zip-top freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month.
Serving sizes and nutritional information are only an estimate and may vary from your results.
This post was originally posted on December 27, 2017 and was republished on February 11, 2020 and December 16, 2022 with resized images and refreshed content.
Can I use just Active Yeast and not Rapid Yeast?
Yes, you can use active dry yeast, but you'll need to dissolve in the warm water and honey that's in the ingredients and let it stand until foamy, about 10 minutes, before using. Happy baking, Cheryl!
made this for my kids and they love it.
That's wonderful to hear, Price! Thank you for your review!
White mountain bread is my husbands favorite bread (he grew up in FL and worked at Publix as a teenager even). I would like to make this for him but I have fast acting yeast (not instant) so it requires 10 minutes in warm water to bubble and do it’s thing. How does that impact the order for making this bread? I don’t want to waste ingredients. Do I just mix the flour and salt together and then had the water and yeast after 10 minutes like I would for my other breads I make?
Fast action and instant yeast are the same thing, and they don't require blooming; however, active dry yeast does. I'd recommend adding the honey to the yeast/water mixture, as that will feed the yeast and encourage it to activate. You can stir the flour and salt together and let it sit while the yeast is blooming. I hope you and your husband enjoy this recipe! Let me know how it goes! 🙂
Should the water be room temperature or cold? My dough seems a little dry and I added extra water.
You can use room temperature or warm (115°F) water. Cool to room temp water will make the dough rise slower, while warmer water helps it rise faster.
Followed exactly with bread flour and used my instant pots yogurt cycle for the rise and it’s the best bread I’ve ever made, perfect. I didn’t even butter it because of the flavor. Great recipe
I'm glad you enjoyed it so much, Laura! Thank you!
My dough isn’t sticky at all! I added more water and it got weird. It’s a pretty tough dough so it’s impossible to “fold in the seams tight” on the bottom. Should I just add more water until it’s sticky?
Without seeing the dough, it's hard to see what the problem is. Did you measure the ingredients accurately? Did you make any substitutions? Keep in mind that you may have to add more water than the recipe states depending upon the humidity in the room and the brand of flour you're using. Gradually kneading more water into the dough should solve the problem. If you have any further questions, please let me know!
Absolutely amazing ! A new favorite !
That's wonderful to hear, Jen! So glad that this is a new favorite for you.
I made the loaf as stated and my wife and I ate two thirds of it the first day. The mountain bread I get at Publix has a soft crust and mine was hard. What do you think of lowering the temperature and cook it longer? Either way I’m still going to make this recipe, I put butter and jelly on a slice and my wife is compelled to take half of it. Thanks
Hi Keith, I'm so glad that you and your wife enjoyed the mountain bread so much! For a softer crust, sift the bread flour before making the bread and don't use steam in the oven while the loaf bakes. If that still makes the crust too hard for your liking, you can lower the temperature to 400 F for baking.
Used the kitchen aid which makes it easy and no mess. I should have measured my water better, I dissolve the yeast first just an old habit I have. Came out great ! Crisp brown crust soft and light inside
I'm so glad that you enjoyed it and that it turned out good. 🙂 Dissolving the yeast in the water is needed only if you're using active dry yeast. I always use fast-action (aka instant) yeast in my recipes to omit this step.
Native Girl Baking
How did you make the design on the loaf? I’m new to baking breads and my father loves white mountain bread. He actually sent this recipe to me. I’m sure he was wanting me to bake it for him and just didn’t say anything lol.! So anyway does it automatically turn white like that as well? It’s very beautiful and looks amazing. I hope mine will turn out like the one in the picture if not I will keep trying.
I used a special knife called a lame to cut the designs. If you're really into bread baking, I'd highly recommend getting a lame, because using a regular kitchen knife to score the bread is much more tricky. The particular design I used was inspired by Anna Gabur from Bread Journey on Instagram; although I'd recommend a simpler slashing pattern for beginners.
To make the crust white, spritz the loaf with water and gently rub it in to the loaf. Gently rub in the flour. I hope you and your Dad enjoy the mountain bread--please leave a star rating once you've tried it! 🙂
Can this be made in a bread machine ?
I've never made this bread recipe in a bread machine, so I'm not sure how it would turn out. 🙂 Feel free to experiment and let me know how it works for you!