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Homemade Rosemary and Garlic Croutons are Super Simple to Make

by | Nov 8, 2021 | Recipes

If you’re into wasting less food, you’re gonna love these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons. Do you love big salads with a crunchy topping? If so, you’re gonna love these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons. And, if you love crusty, airy artisan bread drizzled with olive oil infused with rosemary, garlic, onion, and salt for good measure, then you’re gonna love these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons, too. Get the picture? You’re gonna freakin’ LOVE these croutons–they’re well-seasoned, easy to make, and simply addicting. I dare you to just eat a handful!

close up of rosemary and garlic croutons in bowl

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Have you ever made croutons at home? Good Lord, I hope so! And if you haven’t, well then there’s no time like the present to learn. It’s so easy to make these toasty little cubes of bread. Once you make these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons, you’re going to start saving your old bread to make another batch–trust me! You may even find yourself deliberately checking out the “yesterday’s bread” section of your local supermarket. I’ve literally been eating these croutons as a snack like a normal person does crackers or chips. (Please send help! LOL)

JUMP TO:

INGREDIENTS    SWAPS    TIPS & TRICKS    HOW-TO    RECIPE

Rosemary and Garlic Croutons

It took me 20+ years in the kitchen before I decided to dive into learning how to make homemade croutons. I knew it was simple to make them at home with leftover bread. But, I always thought, “is it really worth the bother?”. Now, I know that the answer to that question is a resounding “yes!”—and I kick myself for all those years of settling for subpar croutons from the grocery store.

These Rosemary and Garlic Croutons make the most of dried out, stale bread and common pantry seasonings. Nothing fancy is needed to make them–just an olive oil you love and some garlic powder, onion powder, dried rosemary, and a smidgen of kosher salt. And they take less than 30 minutes from start to finish! My recipe is flexible because I want you to be able to make the kind of croutons you like. You can use a day-old loaf of crusty, airy artisan ciabatta or keep things more simple with packaged, pre-sliced bread.

crispy rosemary and garlic croutons atop a garden salad

Also, because not everyone loves a super crunchy crouton like I do, I did the hard work for y’all. I tested multiple batches of croutons to find the perfect toasting times for crunchy and for a little chew inside. So now you’ll know how long to bake your croutons based on the bread you use and the crunch factor you desire. See the Ingredient Swaps & Variations section below for the toasting time that results in your perfect homemade crouton.

Gonna try out this recipe?

Leave a star rating or review in the comments to let me know what you think!

Ingredients For Homemade Rosemary and Garlic Croutons

  • Day-old or Stale Bread – When making homemade croutons, it’s best to start out with bread that is already stale. For “artisan” breads, this usually means bread that’s a day or two old. For packaged sliced bread from the bread aisle, you’ll need to take an extra (but simple) step for these croutons.
  • Dried Rosemary – Give it a rough chop using a large knife if you find the texture a bit too “woody”.
  • Garlic Powder – The garlic in these croutons is what makes them *pop* as little bites of crispy, crunchy, savory goodness.
  • Onion Powder – The onion takes a back seat to the garlic and rosemary here. But it’s still an important player in the seasoning line up.
  • Salt – Salt makes everything taste better. So there’s a small amount to ensure the rosemary, garlic, and onion shine.
  • Olive Oil – This is where the magic happens. Our little bread cube friends get a generous showering of the infused olive oil for maximum flavor and crispiness.

Pin this recipe to make later!

Rosemary and Garlic Croutons Recipe Pin Graphic for Pinterest

Ingredient Swaps & Variations

The Swaps…

  • Flavor Swaps! – The beauty of homemade croutons is that you can make them any flavor that your heart desires! Other flavors that I’ve found to be finger licking good and a tasty topper on salads and soups alike are Thyme, Garlic and Parmesan, Sage, Herbs de Provence, and Italian Seasoning.
  • Oil Swaps! – If olive oil isn’t your thing, sub in an equal amount of another neutral cooking oil or melted butter.
  • Add a Cheesy Twist! – You can easily add cheese to these rosemary and garlic croutons in one of two ways, if you so desire. First is to use shelf stable grated Parmesan cheese; you know, the kind with the well-known green plastic shaker top. When using shelf stable grated cheese like this, add the cheese directly into the olive oil and seasoning mixture prior to drizzling it over your cubed bread. The second way is to use freshly grated cheese. I find the best way to add freshly grated cheese is to toast your cubed bread as directed in the recipe (full card below) and then hit them with a sprinkle of cheese IMMEDIATELY once you take your baking sheet out of the oven.
close up of crispy crunchy rosemary and garlic croutons

The Variations on Cooking Times (to get your perfect crouton)

  • For Artisan Bread, Crunchy – Follow the recipe exactly as it’s written in the recipe card below (cause you and me both like ’em crunchy!).
  • For Artisan Bread, with Slight Chew – Reduce the baking time to 10-12 minutes. 10 minutes will give you a light toast; 12 minutes will give you a moderate toast.
  • For Packaged Sliced Bread, Crunchy – Working with packaged bread is a bit more difficult to get a crunchy crouton. First, you’ll need to let your bread cubes sit out overnight, uncovered. Then, when baking, reduce the time to 12-13 minutes. This will give your croutons a nice crunchiness and you should have minimal croutons that are slightly chewy as well as minimal croutons that are nearly burned.
  • For Packaged Sliced Bread, with Slight Chew – Because packaged bread has enzymes in it that help keep it soft longer, even if you want a slight chew to your crouton, you’ll still need to let your bread cubes sit out uncovered overnight. Then, when baking, reduce the time to 10-12 minutes. This will give your croutons a nice lightly golden brown color, a crunch around the edges, and a slightly soft interior.

Recipe Tips & Tricks

What to Remember – Add your seasonings to the oil before you begin cubing your bread; this will allow them time to infuse into the oil and flavor the oil.

What to Avoid – Avoid burning your croutons! Keep a watchful eye on your baking sheet once you hit the 10 minute mark if you’re going for a less crunchy crouton. If you’re making a crunchy crouton, start watching your baking sheet closely around the 12 minute mark.

Ways to Use Leftovers of these Rosemary & Garlic Croutons – Leftover croutons are great for making breadcrumbs to use as a crunchy topping on casseroles. They’re also a great swap-in for when making stuffing for holiday dinners. Or you can be a weirdo like me and just eat them as a snack!

homemade crouton seasonings infusing into olive oil

Recipe Notes

Storage – Let your homemade croutons completely cool (1-1.5 hours depending on how big of a batch you make). Then, transfer them to an airtight glass or plastic container or ziploc bag. Store the croutons in the airtight container or bag at room temperature. Stored properly, these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons will stay fresh and crispy for 3 weeks!

Servings & Nutrition – One serving of these Rosemary and Garlic Croutons is 1/2 cup. This recipe makes 5 servings. Each serving has approximately 113 calories, 12 g of carbohydrates, 2 g of protein, 6 g of fat, and 1 g of sugar. For the full recipe and additional nutritional information, please see the recipe card below.

How to Make Homemade Rosemary and Garlic Croutons

Step 1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Next, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Then, add the olive oil, garlic, onion, salt, and rosemary to a small bowl. Mix well to combine and then set aside.

Step 2. Cube your stale bread into half-inch cubes. Then, add the cubed bread to a large mixing bowl.

Step 3. Drizzle 2-3 spoonfuls of the seasoned oil over the cubed bread, then toss to more evenly coat the bread cubes. Continue drizzling oil a few spoonfuls at a time and then tossing the cubed bread, until all oil has been added to the bread cubes.

steps to make homemade croutons

Step 4. Transfer the bread cubes to the baking sheet, making sure to arrange them in a single layer and ensure that the cubes aren’t crowded very closely to each other.

Step 5. Bake the cubed bread for 8 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and flip the bread cubes. Return the baking sheet to the oven and continue baking another 7 minutes.

homemade croutons on a garden salad

If you make this recipe, tag me in your photos on Instagram—I love seeing what you guys decided to make!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use white bread for my croutons or can I use wheat bread instead?

You can use any kind of bread that you’d like to for making these homemade rosemary and garlic croutons, just as long as its a bit stale. Whole wheat bread would make an excellent pairing, but you could also use other dark breads like pumpernickel and rye if you’d like.

It seems like this recipe uses quite a bit of olive oil, can I cut back on the oil at all?

I know, I know, it does seem like a lot of olive oil, but it’s what helps ensure that each crouton gets well-coated with the seasonings and has a good crisp at the end. When I make these croutons, I figure out the amount of oil to use by adding up the number of cups of bread that I have and subtracting one cup–that tells me the number of tablespoons of oil to use. So, if I have 8 cups of bread, I would use 7 tablespoons of olive oil. You could certainly reduce the amount of oil you use for your croutons; I’d use this same formula and subtract 2….so for 8 cups of bread, try 6 tablespoons of olive oil.

I’ve got a bunch of hot dog and hamburger buns leftover from a party, could I use them to make these croutons?

Certainly!! And I love that you’re trying to find new ways to use the leftover buns instead of letting them go to waste. Cut them up into the cubes as directed and then let them sit out overnight in a single layer like I’ve noted above in the post to do with packaged sliced bread you’d typically get from the bread aisle at your local grocery store. Then, follow the recipe as directed and you should be good to go!

Other Recipes You May Enjoy

close up of rosemary and garlic croutons in bowl

Homemade Rosemary and Garlic Croutons

Yield: 2.5 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Savory herb infused oil transforms stale bread cubes into the perfect crispy, crunchy topping for any soup or salad!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups of cubed bread
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, add the olive oil, salt, garlic, onion, and rosemary. Stir well to combine, and set aside.

2. Cut your stale bread into 1/2-inch cubes. Add the cubed bread to a large mixing bowl.

3. Drizzle a few spoonfuls of the seasoned olive oil over the cubed bread, then use a large spoon to toss the bread to mix the oil and seasoning around. Repeat drizzling and mixing until all oil has been added to the cubed bread.

4. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

5. Pour the bread cubes out onto the lined baking sheet; spread bread cubes into a single layer while making sure cubes aren't crowded too closely to one another.

6. Bake bread cubes for 8 minutes, then remove the baking sheet from the oven and flip the bread cubes over.

7. Return bread cubes to the oven and bake another 7 minutes.

Notes

For 3 cups of cubed bread, you'll need approximately 1 loaf of French, Italian, Ciabatta, or Sourdough "artisan" style bread or 1/2 loaf of packaged sliced bread.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5 Serving Size: 1/2 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 113Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 234mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 2g

This nutrition data is provided and calculated by Nutritionix. Please keep in mind that your specific nutritional values may vary based on the brand of ingredients you use to make this recipe.

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Hey there! I’m Krystal, the sassy-mouthed, self-taught, home cook behind the content here at Sweet, Savory & Sassy. I have a deep love for sharing food with people and showing folks just how easy it really is to make dishes that will bring a little extra joy to those you love. There’s nothing like making something special for friends and family and seeing their face light up in delight during that first bite!
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