Online Recipe Book

Po Boy Bread

4 very large rolls
Prep info
10 min prep + 15 min mix & knead + 60 min rise + 15 min prep + 90 min rise + 30 min bake
Prep time
Not set
Cook time
3 hours, 40 minutes
Time required
3 hours, 40 minutes
Oven preheat


  • 2 c water (100F-105F; not more than 110F)
  • 2 T active dry yeast
  • 2 T Sugar (Granulated)
  • 6 c Flour (Strong Bread)
  • 1 T Salt (Table)
  • 2 T shortening (or tallow, lard, or bacon grease)


Mix water, yeast, and sugar; let stand for ten minutes. Combine rest of ingredients and mix until combined.  Knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes (if you're not familiar with breadmaking, look for a good tutorial on the net to cover it). Let rise for 60 minutes.

Punch down, and divide into 4 balls. Roll each of these into loaves approximately 2" x 12" (give or take). Cover with damp rag; let rise for 90 minutes.

Bake at 375 for 30 minutes or until done. Slice lengthwise at a beveled angle.


Notes from source: Halve the recipe if you want to get a more manageable 2 loaves. Each is still going to be big enough for a VERY big meal, so don't underestimate the yield.

Traditionally po' boy bread is almost impossible to get right; it's made with white flour, lots of yeast, and contains a good amount of tallow or shortening for texture. Heavy leavening produces a bread that is strong, almost beery in taste, light in texture, soft on the inside and flaky and crumbly on the outside.

If you're not lucky enough to live near a store that stocks Leidenheimer breadt, any decent baguette with similar properties will do. Panini is a bit different from the traditional loaf, but works very well in my experience. Or, you can avoid shopping around and try this recipe.

SJ Notes: I don't always make this bread for the po boys, but when I do it's worth it.  Very tasty, and the texture is great.  When I skip making the bread, panini is readily available here and works just fine.