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Cheese And Onion Pot Bread Recipe

Published by: Chef Amy Hand • Updated: January 23, 2024 • Checked By: Chef Matty Riedel

This cheese and onion pot bread recipe is delicious and brilliant with soup or any saucy dish. The bread mops up the sauce, cheese, and onion, making it extra tasty. The family will love the taste, and you will love how easy it is to make. I love this because the whole meal can be prepared the day before if you do a slow cook stew and bake the bread – then you have to warm it up the next day! It’s like a day off.

The smell of baking bread is comforting and homely. The po-bread recipe below can be changed to make it your own by adding your favourite spices and cheeses. This can become your own recipe to share with friends and family once you add your own touches.

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Ingredients For Cheese And Onion Pot Bread


For this recipe, we will be using wheat flour. More specifically, white bread wheat flour. The flour is what gives the dough its structure. The higher protein in bread flour strengthens the dough more than all-purpose or cake flour. Bread flour has folic acid and vitamin B, which are great for your body’s health.


You are going to use instant yeast for this recipe. It makes it quicker and easier to bake bread. Yeast is used as a leavening agent to cause your bread to rise. Without a leavening agent, your dough will not rise, and you will have flat, hard bread. Yeast helps you to digest your food, which means that the vitamins in your food are more readily absorbed.


To activate the yeast and give it a bit of a boost, you add a little sugar. The sugar does not really affect the taste of the bread but helps to get your rising agent started.


For this recipe, we are going to use cheese and butter. The butter gives the bread a higher rise, the crust is crispier, and it lasts longer once baked. This recipe will use cheddar cheese because it pairs well with the onion and spice. 


White onion adds a nice sweetness to your bread.  Onion is delicious and adds moisture to the bread, even once baked, not to mention it is full of vitamins and antioxidants. Be sure to chop your onion very finely. You can even grate it to get it smaller if you like.

Herbs And Spices

Adding herbs and spices to your dough gives the bread a wonderful taste and boosts the nutritional value. We will use some mixed herbs and some cayenne pepper to take this bread to a new level. We will be adding garlic, too, to pump up the flavour. You can add paprika for extra smokiness if you like the taste.

Alternative Ingredients

  1. Wheat flour – several wheat-free flours are available at health stores and good supermarkets. You can use other flours, but health benefits and texture may suffer.
  2. Yeast – though yeast is a good nutritional leavening agent, you can swap out your yeast for baking powder. Remember, the ratio is 1:1, so using baking powder might alter the overall taste of your bread. 
  3. You do not need an activator if you use baking powder instead of yeast. So, the sugar is not required. Yeast can also be activated with honey or molasses.
  4. Butter is a dairy product that is easy to replace with good quality plant-based butter.
  5. Cheddar cheese can be replaced with your favourite cheese, but do not use soft cheese like cream cheese or brie. Great cashew-based cheeses that taste and act just like normal cheese are available.
  6. Onion is a wonderful flavour addition to the bread, but you can use scallops or chives.
  7. Garlic is a miracle bulb. We use minced garlic in this recipe, but you can use fresh garlic or eliminate the garlic altogether.

Serving Tips

This bread can be baked in a cast iron pot, as the name suggests. or in two bread-baking tins. 

Serve with soup or to make a delicious sandwich, or if you feel like a delicious treat, just spread some butter on the warm bread and eat just as is.

You can make a delicious savoury French toast if your bread gets stale.

Storage Tips

Your homemade cheese bread can be kept out of the fridge for up to 2 days before going stale.

To freeze the bread, ensure it is completely cooled, wrap it in cling wrap and aluminium foil and freeze. To thaw the bread, leave it in the fridge overnight to thaw or leave it to thaw at room temperature. You can warm the bread using a toaster.

Cheese And Onion Pot Bread

Cheese And Onion Pot Bread Recipe
Cheese And Onion Pot Bread
Click The Stars Below To Rate This Recipe:
5 from 1 vote
PREP TIME 40 minutes
COOK TIME 45 minutes
COURSE Side Dish
CUISINE South Africa
CALORIES 4360 kcal



  • 1 kilogram White bread flour
  • 20 grams Instant yeast
  • 10 grams Sugar
  • 10 grams Salt
  • ½ stick Butter
  • 500 ml Water, warm
  • 150 grams Cheddar cheese
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped, or 1 tablespoon dried onion
  • 5 ml Cayenne pepper
  • 5 ml Dried herbs
  • 5 ml Ginger, minced


  • In a large bowl place your flour, yeast sugar and salt. Rub in your margarine with your fingertips.
  • Add your warm water, onion, garlic, cheese, herbs and spices and mix thoroughly, knead until your dough is smooth. If dough is too sticky, add a bit of flour, if it is too dry, add a bit more water.
  • Cover the dough and put in a warm place for half an hour or until it has doubled in size. Knock the dough down.
  • Lightly oil a cast iron pot or two bread baking tins. Put your dough into the pot and cover. Let the dough rest for a further 10 minutes.
  • While the dough is proofing preheat your oven to 400°F.
  • Put the pot with the dough in the oven and bake for 40 to 45 mins or until golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for ten minutes before removing from the pot or the bread tins.
  • Serve and enjoy.
Chefs Tips
Please note that if you are using bread tins the baking time is slightly reduced, check your bread from 35 minutes onward.
Nutritional Information
Calories: 4360kcalCarbohydrates: 754gProtein: 164gFat: 71gSaturated Fat: 32gPolyunsaturated Fat: 10gMonounsaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0.02gCholesterol: 151mgSodium: 4895mgPotassium: 1457mgFiber: 33gSugar: 14gVitamin A: 3806IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 1321mgIron: 16mg
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The Pot Bread Back Story

The connection between potbread and the ancient Egyptians is quite intriguing. The ancient Egyptians were among the earliest known civilizations to practice the art of bread-making, and their innovations in this field had a significant impact on later cultures and bread-making techniques worldwide.

  1. Early Bread Making: The ancient Egyptians were skilled bread makers as early as 3000 BC. They cultivated wheat and barley; the grain was ground into flour, mixed with water, and then baked to create bread. This was a staple in the Egyptian diet.
  2. Ovens and Baking Techniques: The Egyptians used a variety of ovens for baking. One common type was a conical clay oven, where the dough was placed inside the oven on the hot walls. This method is somewhat similar to the later potbread method, as both utilize enclosed, heated spaces for baking.
  3. Fermentation and Leavening: One of the most significant contributions of the ancient Egyptians to the art of bread making was the discovery of natural fermentation. They noticed that the dough would rise when left out, resulting in a lighter, more palatable bread. This natural yeast would later become a cornerstone in bread-making across the world.
  4. Cultural Importance: Bread held a significant place in ancient Egyptian society. It was a daily staple and had religious and ceremonial importance. The bread was often included in offerings to the gods and the tombs of the deceased as sustenance for the afterlife.
  5. Influence on Future Cultures: The bread-making techniques of the ancient Egyptians were passed down and adapted by successive cultures, including the Greeks and Romans. While the specific technique of pot bread, as known in South African cuisine, may not directly originate from ancient Egyptian methods, the overall evolution of bread-making practices certainly owes a lot to Egyptian innovations.

In summary, while the direct line from ancient Egyptian bread-making techniques to the specific method of South African pot bread might not be straightforward, the innovations and practices developed by the ancient Egyptians undoubtedly laid the foundations for many modern bread-making techniques, including baking in enclosed, heated spaces. Their understanding and development of yeast and fermentation processes revolutionized how bread was made and consumed, influencing countless generations and cultures.

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Chef Amy Hand