Homemade Croutons

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Learn how to make homemade croutons that are crunchy on the outside, slightly chewy on the inside, and SO much better than store bought croutons. Use in salads, soups, stuffing, and more!

Homemade Croutons

I love a good salad, especially when croutons are involved, but not any old croutons will do. I don’t like store bought croutons, I like homemade croutons. They are SO much better and SO easy to make, I promise.

Today, I am going to teach you how to make the best croutons in under 30 minutes. You can use them in salads, as a garnish for soup, chowder, chili, in your favorite stuffing, grind them up in a food processor to make breadcrumbs, and so much more!

You will never buy store bought croutons again…and you will want to use them in anything and everything because they are so good! Promise me you will make this Caesar Tortellini Salad. It’s our favorite!

Croutons Recipe

Easy Ingredients

  • Bread-To make good croutons, you need to start with good bread. Use a crusty loaf of bread, either French, Italian, or Sourdough. Don’t use wimpy white Wonder bread:) It is also best to use bread that is stale, that is at least a day or two old. So if you have stale bread sitting on the counter, don’t throw it out, make croutons! You can also use flavored breads to jazz up your croutons. Rosemary & olive oil, asiago cheese, or garlic are all great options. Don’t cut off the crust, the crust is what makes the croutons hearty and so delicious!
  • Olive oil AND Butter-I use olive oil and butter. You need to toss the bread cubes in olive oil so they will crisp up in the oven. I like to add melted butter too for added flavor. If you need the croutons to be vegan, you can use just olive oil.
  • Garlic Powder-I normally like to use fresh garlic, but with croutons, I like to use garlic powder so the garlic doesn’t burn in the oven and so all of the bread pieces are evenly coated with garlic.
  • Italian Seasoning-Italian seasoning adds great flavor to the croutons and we always have a jar in our pantry.
  • Salt and Black Pepper-Finish with salt and pepper for necessary flavor.

How to Make Croutons

You can make homemade croutons in about 30 minutes and most of the time is oven time. The prep is easy and the results are SO delicious!

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Cut the loaf of bread into 3/4-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Make sure the bread cubes are all the same size so the croutons cook evenly. You can also tear your bread if you want rustic bread cubes. I usually like to cut the bread with a bread knife to make sure they are the same size, but either way works!
  • Drizzle the bread cubes with olive oil and melted butter. Sprinkle the garlic powder, Italian seasoning, salt, and black pepper over the bread. Toss until all of the bread cubes are well coated.
  • Spread the bread cubes onto the prepared baking sheet, making sure the bread cubes are in an even layer and not touching. If they are too close and overlapping, they won’t cook evenly and won’t crisp up.
  • Bake for 12 to 20 minutes, tossing halfway through, or until the croutons are golden brown. Check early to make sure you don’t burn them. Time will depend on how thick your bread pieces are and how your oven cooks. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Warning, it is hard to walk by the pan and not grab a crouton or two…or a handful:)
  • Store croutons in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

More Homemade Recipes:

Homemade Croutons Recipe

Homemade Croutons

Learn how to make homemade croutons that are crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and SO much better than store bought croutons. Use in salads, soups, stuffing, and more!

4.74 from 15 votes
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Total Time
25 minutes
Cuisine
American
Servings
20

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf crusty French, Italian, or Sourdough bread
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

  2. Cut the loaf of bread into 3/4-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Drizzle the bread cubes with olive oil and melted butter. Sprinkle the garlic powder, Italian seasoning, salt, and black pepper over the bread. Toss until all of the bread cubes are well coated.

  3. Spread the bread cubes onto the prepared baking sheet, making sure the bread cubes are in an even layer and not touching.

  4. Bake for 12 to 20 minutes, tossing halfway through, or until the croutons are golden brown. Check early to make sure you don't burn them. Time will depend on the thickness of your bread and your oven. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Nutrition Facts
Homemade Croutons
Amount Per Serving
Calories 187 Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value*
Fat 13g20%
Saturated Fat 6g30%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Fiber 1g4%
Protein 2g4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keywords

croutons, homemade

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Maria Lichty

I’m Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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CommentsLeave a reply

  1. These croutons look amazing! I love the combination of olive oil and butter. This is a must try! Thank you for sharing these tips.

    1. I put chopped garlic in a small pot with the olive oil and strain…gives you the fresh garlic taste….

  2. 5 stars
    Yes, these croutons are indeed MUCH better than its store-bought version! I’m making this recipe for the second time, and this time I’ll make enough croutons for the whole week long, woo hoo!
    Thanks for the awesome recipe. Love you Maria & Josh! <3

  3. Love this recipe! Had leftover bread i had made. It was reheated once so it was ready to go ir to become croutons. Luckily I opted for croutons. Serving these with homemade soup. Can’t wait to pop these on a nice hot bowl of soup! Thanks for a great idea!

    1. 5 stars
      Ok, so this is the second batch I made. First batch was great but not ALL were very crunchy, but they were still amazing!!!! This time I lowered the oven to 350° so I could cook them just a little longer, about 18 minutes on the first side and then 5 minutes once I turned them. I have a little OCD so I turned each one by hand to get them evenly browned. I used aluminum foil under them and found they crisped better on the foil side. I also added some extra crushed dried parsley (1/4 tsp) and garlic salt (1/4 tsp) to the recipe. I mixed all the dry ingredients together in a small bowl and once the bread cubes were coated with the melted butter and oil, I was able to sprinkle the dry ingredients a little at a time. I intermittently added the dry mix while stirring the bread to coat each piece. They came out perfect and crispy.

      They are better than I’ve ever had in a restaurant or store bought! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I’m hooked and I’ll be making them at home from now on!

      I wish I could ass a photo to show how nicely they came out. But anyone who tries this recipe will be thrilled with the results.

  4. Excellent. I used left over Hot dog buns and they came out great.Served as side/garnish for potato soup and were delicious. Easy recipe thanks.

  5. 5 stars
    Mine never got crunchy but I gave the recipe five stars still because I think it had nothing to do with the recipe and either the bread I used or… something.

    Wanted to use what was left of my BFs first attempt at baking a load of homemade gluten free bread for me at Christmas.

    Surprisingly, while it was pretty stale in the fridge it wasn’t moldy and actually still had some softness to it. But I knew right away I wanted to try making croutons out of the rest of it and followed this recipe.

    Was very simple took me about 10 minutes to get everything together. I put them in for 18 minutes and they were still kind of soft in the middle so I put them in for an additional four.

    They crunched up slightly more but they’re still kind of soft and not crunchy like typical croutons!

    What would you suggest doing in the future? they started getting pretty golden brown I was afraid they would burn if I left them in longer. Maybe cut them smaller next time? Cut them into pretty typical size pieces.

    Too much olive oil?

    Perhaps it’s because it’s gluten free bread?

    They’re very tasty otherwise and incredibly easy. Just for some pizazz I added a little of lemon pepper seasoning to mine

  6. 5 stars
    I have made these delicious croutons 4 times and making them again today for our Sunday Family Dinner. They are simply yummy and surprisingly easy to make.

  7. We used our homemade rustic loaf and homemade French bread in your recipe. Loved it! The next time we used the same ingredients plus some of our homemade Italian seasoning and also added in some onion powder. Delicious. I can’t help myself with playing around with recipes.

  8. My recipe for croutons is similar but I add fresh garlic. I don’t melt the butter. I put all the ingredients into the food processor. Since the butter wasn’t melted you can spread this with a spatula on the bread slices and then cut into cubes.

  9. 5 stars
    I used leftover sesame seed hamburger buns and they still came out amazing. Your recipe literally changed my life/dinner. Every other night I have a Caesar salad with these croutons or soup with these croutons. Amazing with lobster bisque, New England clam chowder, squash soup, steak salad. Now I do not live without them!

    1. 5 stars
      Fantastic recipe. Super easy. Used left over split rolls and they look perfect and once they cooled off they crisped up beautifully. Love these in my caesar salad.
      Perfect!!!!

    2. i got 15 minutes in with mine, went for another 10 and they burned. and i know my oven is off. seems like lower temp, and maybe longer time or maybe not, works. i also may have made my pieces smaller so they just cooked faster. def gotta keep an eye on them.

  10. 5 stars
    These came out great! I used Some stale bread I had and added a small amount of crushed red pepper for a little kick. Thank you.

  11. 5 stars
    Takes salads to the next level. So easy to make and been eating this everyday! I use my small toaster over and eyeball the ingredients. A lil bit of this and a lil bit of that! Great as snack too!!

  12. I used whole grain hotdog buns that needed to be used up before going stale. I followed the recipe and cooking instructions but set my temp at 350 and only cooked for 15 mins because my oven runs a little hot, and they still got a little too browned. Just an FYI to anyone else who may have this issue. The flavor is good, so I will try again.

  13. 5 stars
    Husband approved! My husband loved these croutons I made him today. I added approximately 3 TBSP more of olive oil as my bread was very stale and needed the extra to coat it all, but not saturate. I love the versatility of this recipe and look forward to trying hard shredded cheeses on them next time.

    Storage: Could I put them in the refrigerator in an air tight container to increase shelf life? though I doubt they’ll last past this week as I am finding him snacking on them. LOL

    Thank you and looking forward to viewing more of your website contact!

    1. Sure, if you want them to last longer you can put them in the fridge or even freezer.

  14. Great recipes I had a loaf of la brea bakery cheese bread and added some pecorino romano to the butter/olive oil seasoning mix . Delicious

  15. 3 stars
    They were smelling wonderful at the halfway point of the oven time, but we’re burned at the end of the second half. 🙁 if I try it again I will cut down the temperature or the time.

  16. 5 stars
    I made these croutons with the last, dried out piece of artisan bakery French bread. Then I ended up eating all of them before they made it to the salad bowl. 🙂 One question – they were delicious but crunchy all the way through. How could I get them chewy in the center? Different bread? Different thickness of the pieces? Different time or temp in the oven? I would happily experiment!

    1. Don’t bake them as long if you don’t want them as crunchy. A different bread might help too, not super crusty loaf.

  17. 5 stars
    Have made these several times. So good! I just read through the comments and can’t wait to try rye bread. I’ve made several different recipes for homemade croutons and these are the BEST!

  18. Hi, Maria! I’m following you from Italy with a lot of pleasure, adore your recipes ❤ I think I’ll made this croutons with Tuscan bread but…ah…what’s Italian seasoning..?
    Many many Kisses
    Daniela

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