Sourdough Garlic-Herb Croutons

CATEGORIES: Condiments, Other, Sara

If you’ve never made your own croutons, they’re the perfect way to use up slightly stale bread, plus they’re so much better than anything you can make at the store. After you make these Sourdough Garlic-Herb Croutons, you’ll never go back!

Keep reading after the recipe…
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Sourdough Garlic-Herb Croutons

  • Author: kate jones

Description

These homemade sourdough garlic-herb croutons are the perfect way to use up slightly stale bread–plus they’re so good, you’ll never go back to buying them from the store!


Ingredients

4 cups sourdough bread cubes
1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon real butter
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon granulated onion/onion powder
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried parsley
Optional: 1-2 tablespoons crumbled Parmesan cheese
Also an option: scrap all of the seasonings above and just throw on this garlic bread seasoning!

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl combine salt, onion, garlic, oregano, and parsley and set aside. Melt butter in the microwave until completely melted and then combine it with the olive oil. Place bread cubes in a large bowl and pour the butter/oil mixture over the bread cubes making sure to distribute evenly over the cubes in a small drizzle. Don’t dump it all in one place. If you do that, a few lucky little bread bits will soak up all the buttery goodness and the rest will get hurt feelings from being left out. Immediately use your hands to toss making sure to coat each bread cube with the butter mixture. Sprinkle the herb mixture over the bread cubes, again, making sure to distribute it evenly and use your hands to coat well.
Spread cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Place in oven and cook for 10-20 minutes, stirring and flipping every 5 minutes so they cook evenly. The time is going to vary depending on the type of bread used and the size of the cubes. The croutons should be golden brown. Generally, they will take 15-20 minutes.

When finished, remove from oven and immediately toss with Parmesan cheese if desired. Let cool completely.. Store in an airtight container.


So, croutons. I’m a crouton girl. Sometimes I eat a salad just so I can put croutons on it. The same goes for homemade ranch dressing. So sometimes I forego the vegetable part all together and just dip croutons in ranch. Cutting out the middle man, ya know? I also love fresh croutons on hot soup. The way that crunchy bread soaks up the hot liquid so it’s soft and buttery on the bottom and crisp and crunchy on top? So beautiful it almost makes me tear up just thinking about it.
Making your own croutons at home is so easy and they are so much better than anything from a box. It’s a great way to use up bread that’s still good, but just a tad bit too dry to eat on its own. So enjoy this how-to and put it to the test. You may never go back to store-bought again!

Notes on bread

Although the recipe below is for sourdough croutons, you can certainly use any type of bread you like. Experiment with different flavors and textures and you’ll have fun finding your favorite. I think a hearty, rustic loaf works best, as opposed to say scraps of Wonder Bread. A day old baguette would be perfect. Fresh, or slightly dry bread works fine, but skip the super dry, stale stuff unless you’re in the mood to break a tooth. The fresher the bread, the more light and airy the crouton.

Notes on herbs

Play around with flavors depending on how you’re using them. Doing a southwest salad? Try using chili powder and cumin. A little smoked paprika tastes awesome when they top Smokey Bean Soup with Ham and Bacon  or Split Pea Soup with Ham.

Notes on cooking method

You can cook croutons in the oven as well as on the stove top using a skillet. If you just need a few croutons, just bust out a fry pan and cook a single slice of bread on medium heat until golden brown. If you’re cooking a whole batch, like in my recipe below, go for the oven. I personally like the texture and finished product of baked croutons, so I do most of mine in the oven.
To make these, you’re going to need 4 cups of sourdough bread cubes, olive oil, butter, and herbs and spices OR this garlic bread seasoning.
In a small bowl combine salt, onion, garlic, oregano, and parsley and set aside. Melt butter in the microwave until completely melted and then combine it with the olive oil. Mix the butter/olive oil mixture with the garlic-herb mixture.
Place bread cubes in a large bowl and pour the butter/oil/herb mixture over the bread cubes making sure to distribute evenly over the cubes in a small drizzle.
Don’t dump it all in one place. If you do that, a few lucky little bread bits will soak up all the buttery goodness and the rest will get hurt feelings from being left out. Immediately use your hands to toss making sure to coat each bread cube with the butter mixture.
Spread cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet.
See how they all have a little bit of everything??

Place in oven and cook for 10-20 minutes, stirring and flipping every 5 minutes so they cook evenly. The time is going to vary depending on the type of bread used and the size of the cubes. The croutons should be golden brown. Generally, they will take 15-20 minutes.

When finished, remove from oven and immediately toss with Parmesan cheese if desired. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

30 comments

  1. If there are croutons in the house, I will eat them just by themselves! I love them on soups, too, when they get just a little mushy on one side 🙂

  2. I used to work at a restaurant that made fresh ones and made their own ranch dressing. I frequently had a snack of croutons and ranch dressing!

  3. Oh, yum! I will definitely be trying this out. I am a crouton girl, too. Yum. Yum.

    (And I wanted to thank you for the Molten Lava Cake recipe. It was the perfect find for the Valentine’s dinner I made. We had something very similar to that on a cruise we went on last summer and I have been looking for a good recipe ever since. Your recipe was PERFECT. Just like we remember. So thanks!)

  4. I have been dying for a homemade crouton recipe!! Talk about an early birthday present! My sister in law HATES salad but when we go to Texas Roadhouse, she’ll order croutons and a side of ranch instead. Yeah, so you’re totally not alone!

  5. In college I used to put them on top of my spaghetti since I never had garlic bread to go with it. I love croutons! By the way, I’m going to get back to you guys soon – I just have some questions that I need to word right. Evan is sick so my brain is gone. Expect an email soon!

  6. Hey I just wanted to say that I love your blog, I’ve been reading it for a couple of months now. I was wandering do you have a recipe for homemade ranch dressing, I have yet to find one that I like.

  7. Thanks Velecia!
    What a beautiful name you have too 🙂

    Funny about the ranch dressing. I too have made a lot of different recipes, and have yet to find “The One.” Mostly because no matter how good they are, strangely I always like the taste of Hidden Valley Ranch mix (the seasoning mix you make at home- not the plastic bottle, ick!) better! And the really funny thing is that I can’t tell you how many times I have come across restaurants giving out their “secret homemade ranch” recipe and it begins with “one packet ranch dressing mix…” haha.

    I do however like to doctor it up sometimes. I’ll make the packet and then add fresh garlic, parsley, etc.

    So, yes, I have recipes, but no not one I LOVE. But it’s on my list of things I’m constantly experimenting with. Anyone out there have a good one? Let us know and maybe it will make an appearance here!

  8. Actually, Kate- don’t you have one?? I kinda remember seeing that on our schedule once. Have you been holding out on us?!

  9. About the ranch dressing…I’d love a recipe too! Or at least a recommendation on a store-bought one that tastes like the restaurant ones! My husband claims that they all just use bottled Hidden Valley, but I say No Way! (I guess I’m a ranch snob 🙂

    Anyway, I only ever put croutons on salad or eat them plain. And I guess since I do eat them plain, I never have them around to try on other things, like soup.

  10. I love a good crouton and will sometimes eat salad just to eat croutons!! We have a local grocery store that makes amazing croutons in their deli. I go there just to buy croutons! Will definitely be giving these a try! Thanks!

  11. Ranch Dressing

    MAKES ABOUT 1 1⁄2 CUPS

    This condiment isn’t just for salads—it’s also a dip, a marinade, and a flavoring for snack foods (think Doritos).

    1 cup mayonnaise
    1 tsp. onion salt
    1⁄4 tsp. dried chives
    1⁄4 tsp. dried parsley
    1⁄4 tsp. garlic powder
    1⁄4 tsp. salt
    1⁄4 tsp. freshly ground white pepper
    Pinch ground dried oregano
    1 cup buttermilk

    1. Put mayonnaise, onion salt, chives, parsley, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and oregano into a medium mixing bowl and stir to combine. Beat mayonnaise mixture with an electric mixer on low speed for about 5 seconds, then increase speed to medium and beat until smooth, about 20 seconds. Scrape dressing down sides of bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase speed to high and gradually add buttermilk, beating constantly until all the buttermilk is incorporated and the dressing is very smooth, about 2 minutes more.

    2. Cover and refrigerate dressing for at least 12 hours. Stir dressing well before serving. Dressing will keep, refrigerated in a cover container, for up to 2 weeks.

    This recipe was first published in Saveur in Issue #76

  12. I made these the other day using the whole-wheat bread I make, and left out the parsley, ’cause I didn’t have any.
    They were great!

  13. I also like to lightly drizzle Balsamic vinegar over them before baking to add a little punch.

    Ranch Dressing–I grew up with and still love the Hidden Valley mix, but the Buttermilk version.

  14. I love croutons too, in fact, when I am eating a salad and I run out of croutons, that's it, I am done with my salad. Claim Jumper restaurant makes some delicious corn bread croutons, I'd love to try to make some of those as well.

  15. This is insanely good with rye bread. I had rye garlic croutons at a restaurant in Park City and fell madly in love. Even my picky husband liked them and he doesn't like rye! I bet these would be great with some rosemary on them too.

    1. I just store them in an air-tight container in the pantry. They’re definitely good for a couple of days. Beyond that I’m not sure because they’ve never lasted that long at my house! lol

  16. I just have to tell you how much I love these croutons! I’ve been using this recipe for over a year. They are a hit at home and wherever I take them. Thank you!

  17. Made this crouton recipe for our chicken caesar salad tonight. We had a half loaf of sourdough bread that had gone stale, which were a great base for the croutons. They were delicious and perfect!

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