My rosemary garlic white bean soup this past week was complemented with a quick, easy batch of homemade croutons that I whipped together in no time.
When I made these, I thought, “I really need to tell you how easy these are to make.”
The crisp, crunchy texture of these croutons will make your soup or salad taste great, but they’re also an excellent way to recycle leftover bread. It’s a win-win situation.
Yes, Croutons sounds difficult to make, but it’s not as difficult as you think, discover with Apronese how to make it and give it to the whole family to enjoy.
Homemade Croutons: How to Use Them
Croutons are one of the most classic types of crunchy salad toppings, and they also make a great garnish for any thick soup, such as Tomato Soup from scratch, Split Pea Soup from scratch, Rosemary Garlic White Bean Soup, and Smoky Potato and Chickpea Stew from scratch.
It is also possible to crumble the croutons and use them as a crispy topping on pasta to add a little crunch (as a non-dairy alternative to Parmesan cheese), or even crush them and use them as a breading to put on meat or fish instead of regular or panko breadcrumbs.
Croutons: How to Flavor Them
Here is a recipe for basic homemade garlic herb croutons, but you might be pleasantly surprised to find they’re delicious even when seasoned with just salt. And here are some suggestions of other ways to season them:
- Grated Parmesan
- Cracked pepper and sea salt
- Ranch seasoning
- Garlic herb seasoning
- Cajun seasoning
- Rosemary and pepper (fresh rosemary is probably best for this one, chopped finely)
What Kind of Bread is Best for Croutons?
Homemade croutons should definitely be made with a thick, crusty, fairly dense bread if you want them to be solid.
Whenever you eat something light and airy, like white sandwich bread, you won’t be able to get the structure required to make a good crouton.
You won’t be able to crunch it in your mouth, it’ll dissolve in your mouth like cotton candy.
Homemade croutons can be made from either fresh or stale bread. Take advantage of the ends of a loaf of bread that is about to expire by making homemade croutons.
How to Store
Since homemade croutons are definitely best when made fresh, I chose to make just a few cups of this recipe, which is about 4 servings.
After baking and cooling, you can store leftover croutons in an airtight container, although you should expect them to go stale much faster than store purchased croutons (the actual length of time will vary depending on a number of factors).
In order to extend the shelf life of your homemade croutons, you can freeze them (in an airtight container once more).
Easy Homemade Croutons
The homemade croutons are super easy to make and their crispy, crunchy texture adds a whole new level of flavour to any soup or salad.
With just five easy ingredients, you can make them in no time
Servings: 4 about 3/4 cup each
- 4 slices sturdy bread ($0.33)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
- 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend ($0.03)
- 1/8 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
- 1/8 tsp salt ($0.01)
- The oven should be preheated to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut the bread into small cubes, and you should be able to get about 4 cups of bread cubes, loosely packed in a cup.
- The bread cubes should be placed in a large bowl and drizzle olive oil over top of the bread cubes. Either use a spatula or gently toss the bread cubes with your hands to ensure they are coated with oil on all sides.
- There are many Italian seasoning blends on the market today. To prepare, simply blend the Italian seasoning blend, garlic powder, and salt together in a small bowl, and then sprinkle the mixture over the bread cubes. Gently mix the cubes together to ensure that the seasoning is evenly coated.
- It is a good idea to spread the bread out evenly on a baking sheet, then transfer the baking sheet to your oven for about 10 minutes*, checking the bread after every five minutes to see how it is cooking. Using a brush, stir the croutons and cook them for 2-3 more minutes, if necessary, until they are a nice, deep golden brown. Let the croutons cool for a few minutes before serving.
*If the bread is stale or fresh, the cook time may vary significantly depending on the density and moisture level of the bread, so it is important that you check the croutons after five minutes after they are added to the pot.
Calories: 134.93 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 14.08 g ・ Protein: 2.78 g ・ Fat: 7.55 g ・ Sodium: 252.93 mg ・ Fiber: 0.6 g
The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.
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Homemade Croutons: How to Make Them – Step by Step Photos
This is a recipe for homemade croutons that I created for a small batch because I truly believe they’re the best when they’re fresh, and this is the perfect size for when you only have a few slices of bread left.
You’ll need about 4 slices of bread or approximately 4 cups once cubed. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
The cubes should be as uniform as possible so that they bake evenly. You can also tear the bread into chunks for a more rustic look, but again, try to get them to be as uniform as possible.
In a large bowl, take the bread cubes and drizzle two tablespoons of olive oil over them. Gently toss the cubes to ensure that the olive oil is evenly distributed over them.
Taking the seasonings and mixing them in a small bowl first will ensure that they are evenly distributed on the croutons. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend, 1/8 tsp garlic powder, and 1/8 tsp salt.
The herbs should then be sprinkled over the bread cubes and gently tossed again so that they are completely coated in them.
The seasoned bread cubes should be spread out onto a baking sheet and baked.
It is important to take note of the baking time of the croutons as it can differ quite a bit depending upon the density of the bread and the amount of moisture that it contains, so check them every 5 minutes or so while they are baking.
Once they begin to brown and begin to turn golden, stir them gently and bake them for a few more minutes until they are well cooked.
Having baked the croutons for 10 minutes, then stirring and baking them for 2 more minutes, I let them cool for a few minutes before serving.
You’ve never tasted stale bread like this before.
A simple, healthy dish that doesn’t take much time, you should save the recipe, right?
Apronese believes that with ingenuity, you will create delicious and palatable Croutons for your family. Let’s do it and share it in the comments section below.