Its name consists of two parts: 'Sang' in Persian means stone or pebble and 'sangak' means little stone. The bread is baked on a bed of small river stones in an oven. There are, normally, two varieties of this bread offered at Iranian bakeries: the generic one which has no toppings; and the more expensive variety which is topped with poppy seeds and/or sesame seeds.
A very similar bread called kaak is made in Balochistan province of neighboring Pakistan. Kaak is normally served with whole roasted lamb or chicken called Sajji and is a staple of the cuisine.
Sangak bread was traditionally the bread of the Persian army. It is mentioned for the first time in the 11th century. Each soldier carried a small quantity of pebbles which at camp were brought together with the "sangak oven" and used to cook the bread for the entire army. It was eaten along with lambkabab.