Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

Does anyone out there have the ingredients to "start" the Amish Friendship Sweet Bread? Or you may know it as "Herman the Cake". I remember it from the early 1980s. It was a fun thing to have and share. I would also like the directions also, but will be happy for just the starting point.


Thanks ,
Great Granny Vi from Moorpark, CA


Amish Friendship Sweet Bread


  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 3 cups white sugar, divided
  • 3 cups milk


  • In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes. In a 2 quart container glass, plastic, or ceramic container, combine 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Mix thoroughly or flour will lump when milk is added. Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture. Cover loosely and let stand until bubbly. Consider this day 1 of the 10 day cycle. Leave loosely covered at room temperature.

  • On days 2 thru 4; stir starter with a spoon.
  • Day 5; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk.
  • Days 6 thru 9; stir only.
  • Day 10; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Remove 1 cup to make your first bread, give 2 cups to friends along with this recipe, and your favorite Amish Bread recipe.

  • Store the remaining 1 cup starter in a container in the refrigerator, or begin the 10 day process over again (beginning with step 2).

Editor's Note:

Once you have made the starter, you will consider it Day One, and thus ignore step 1 in this recipe and proceed with step 2. You can also freeze this starter in 1 cup measures for later use. Frozen starter will take at least 3 hours at room temperature to thaw before using. (03/12/2006)

By Julia

Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

Amish Friendship Bread (Cake)

  • one package active dry yeast
  • 2-1/2 cups warm water
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Dissolve yeast in 1 cup of the warm water. Stir in remaining warm water, flour, and sugar. Beat until smooth. Place in a glass bowl on countertop and do not refrigerate. Cover with plastic wrap. Do not use metal containers or spoons to stir the starter. After the starter has fermented for 10 days, you're ready to begin the next 10 days. Make sure you don't miss a day! Mixture might become bubbly, and that's OK.


Day 1: Begin or receive starter
Day 2: stir
Day 3: stir
Day 4: stir
Day 5: Add 1 cup sugar, 1 cup flour, 1 cup milk
Day 6: stir
Day 7: stir
Day 8: Do nothing
Day 9: Do nothing
Day 10: Add 1 cup sugar,1 cup flour, 1 cup milk.

After all 10 days are completed, put 1 cup of the starter in four separate containers. Give three to friends and keep one. If your put in Ziploc bags tell friends to "Burp" the bag each day to keep excess air out. When you give the starter to them, they are ready to begin the Day 1 instructions immediately.

Next, when you're ready to bake your bread add the following ingredients to 1 cup of starter:

  • 1 cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 large box or two small boxes vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Beat by hand until well blended. Grease two loaf pans and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 325 degrees F for one hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
That's it. Have fun.

If you want to try a variation of the recipe, replace the cinnamon and vanilla pudding with one of the following: poppy seeds and lemon pudding, chocolate pudding and mini chocolate chips, or banana pudding and walnuts.

By Opal

Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

In the past, I used the recipes that are posted. Now I use this recipe. This Friendship Bread tastes like the one made with the starter, without all the waiting.

Friendship Bread

  • 1 cup oil
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 3.5 oz. box vanilla instant pudding
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 - 1 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 1/4 cup milk

Sugar/Cinnamon Mix

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease two loaf pans. Mix oil and sugar, add eggs and vanilla; beat. In separate bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, including walnuts. Add dry mix alternately with milk until well blended.

Mix 1/3 cup sugar and 1 tsp. cinnamon together in small bowl. In two greased loaf pans, sprinkle mix on the sides and bottoms of the pans. Save some to sprinkle on top of loaves.

Pour batter into prepared pans, sprinkle top of loaves with the sugar/cinnamon mix. Optional, sprinkle chopped walnuts on top. Bake for one hour or until tested done. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. May be served with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Freezes well. Tightly wrap cooled loaves in plastic wrap, then in foil before freezing.


By mkymlp

Amish Friendship Sweet Bread


I have made this with chocolate chips, raisins, and coconut.
Next batch I used butterscotch pudding with cranberries and a few chocolate chips. Next time I am going to use chocolate pudding, mini marshmallows, and chocolate chips. Oh I love this it's so flexible you can put anything in it that you want. My mom used to make this when I was a kid and she would put 1/2 the batter into the greased pan, sprinkle with the sugar and cinnamon mixture and then put the rest of the batter and bake. (11/28/2007)

By Debbie

Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

For those of you wondering about making the cakes without sharing the batter, well I just did that tonight. I doubled "all" the ingredients for the 10th day, and then divided the resulting batter in half, adding a different instant pudding to each half.

To one half, I added lemon pie filling (the kind you use for lemon meringue pie), but did NOT bake it. I added the powder straight from the package along with 2 capsful of real lemon juice concentrate. It was amazing!

For each completed batch of batter, including the 3 "give away" cupfuls, you get (2) full sized loaf pans, (1) 8 inch square pan, and (4) mini-loaf pans.

So far I've made chocolate/chocolate chip cake, banana chocolate chip cake, and lemon. They have all been awesome! The best thing was that I didn't have to try and beg people to take the batter, I used it all up. They freeze really nicely too, either baked up or as batter.


By speedyqltr

RE: Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

Amish Friendship Sweet Bread

Amish Friendship Bread Starter


  • 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
  • 2 Tbsp. warm water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup milk


Day One: Combine yeast, warm water, and a pinch of sugar in a cup. Allow to stand a few minutes until it begins to foam. In a large glass or plastic bowl combine sugar, flour, and milk with wooden or plastic spoon. Stir in yeast mixture. Do not use metal bowl, spoon or beater. Cover loosely and keep at room temperature.

Day Two, Three, and Four: Stir through once each day.

Day Five: Add and stir 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Then stir in 1 cup milk.

Day Six, Seven, Eight and Nine: Stir through once each day.

Day Ten: Add and stir 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Then stir in 1 cup milk. Remove 4 cups of the mixture. Give 1 cup each to friends to use as starter (they put in a bowl and start at Day Two). Use one cup as your own starter with what remains in the bowl.

Amish Friendship Bread


  • 10th Day Friendship starter (approx. 1 cup)
  • 2/3 cup oil
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 large apple, peeled, pared, and chopped
  • 1/2 cup nuts, chopped


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Beat together the ripened starter, oil, flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, cinnamon, salt, eggs, apple, and nuts. Pour into two well-greased 9x5 inch loaf pans. Bake 40-45 minutes. Makes two loaves.


By Robin from Washington, IA


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