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It’s easy to make homemade croutons! This croutons recipe makes crunchy, well-seasoned bites that are tastier than store-bought.

Homemade Croutons
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Or the best way to step up your salad recipes? Try Homemade Croutons! This croutons recipe is the perfect way to use up a loaf of bread that’s starting to go stale, or a way to add an elegant touch to a salad. Cut up bread chunks, add some olive oil and seasonings, and bake until they’re crisp! There’s nothing better than the crispy, garlicky crunch of a crouton fresh from the oven. This is a back-pocket recipe we pull out often: here’s what you need to know!

Ingredients for homemade croutons

Croutons are cubes of re-baked bread that’s seasoned and used to add texture to salads and soups. The word comes from the French croûton, which means “crust.” Croutons were invented as a way to use up stale bread (before the invention of store-bought bread with additives and preservatives), much like bread pudding or panzanella salad.

You don’t have to wait for stale bread to make croutons: you can make this recipe immediately with whatever bread you have on hand. Here are the ingredients you’ll need for homemade croutons:

  • Bread: A hearty artisan bread loaf makes the best croutons, because the open crumb allows for the best crunchy texture. Loaves like Sourdough bread and French bread are preferred over something like a whole wheat sandwich bread.
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper
Homemade croutons

How to make croutons

Once you’ve got the ingredients, the process to make homemade croutons is very simple. Here’s what to do:

  • Slice or tear the bread: Cut the bread into cubes. (Keep in mind that 1 medium slice of bread is about 1 cup of cubes.) You also can tear the bread into small pieces, which makes for crispier croutons with crevices that catch the dressing.
  • Mix with olive oil, garlic powder and salt: Place the cubes in a bowl and mix them with olive oil, garlic powder and kosher salt. The garlic powder makes for the most delicious, garlicky salty croutons.
  • Bake for 15 minutes: Bake the croutons at 300°F for about 15 minutes until they’re crunchy and golden brown.

Variations and flavor ideas

Use this homemade croutons recipe as a template! There are so many different ways to mix up the flavor and seasonings in a crouton. Here are some ideas:

  • Sourdough bread for sourdough croutons
  • Rye bread for rye croutons
  • Ranch seasoning for ranch croutons
  • Smoked paprika for a hint of smoky flavor
  • Dried parsley for herby flavor
Homemade croutons

Ways to use homemade croutons

Of course, there are infinite ways to use homemade croutons. We suggest making them if you have bread to use up or to impress friends or family with a stunning salad. They take any salad recipe from good to incredible! And of course, they are essential for a homemade Caesar salad. (Like, 100% required.) Here are a few ways to use croutons:

Caesar salad

Storage info

You can store leftovers of homemade croutons, but you’ll need follow a few tips to make sure they stay crispy over time. How long do homemade croutons last? You can store them for up to 2 weeks, keeping in mind the tips below:

  • Bake the croutons until golden brown. Underbaking the croutons allows moisture to stay in the bread, which makes them become soggy over time. If you’re not sure, bake the croutons a few minutes longer.
  • Allow the croutons to come to room temperature before storage. This way, they’ll be fully crisp with no extra moisture from the oven.
  • Store in a sealed container for up to 2 weeks. If you’re worried about the croutons staying crisp, you can add a paper towel to the container, which absorbs extra moisture.

More salad recipes and resources

Love salads? Here are a few collections of our favorite salads and salad dressings:

This homemade croutons recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Homemade Croutons

Homemade Croutons

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 ,omites
  • Total Time: 0 hours
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x


It’s easy to make homemade croutons! This croutons recipe makes crunchy, well-seasoned bites that are tastier than store-bought.


  • 4 cups bread, cut into cubes (about 4 medium slices)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Fresh ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F.
  2. Cut the bread into small cubes or tear it into bite-sized pieces. Place the cubes in a medium bowl.
  3. Toss with the olive oil, kosher salt, garlic powder, and a few grinds of black pepper. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and top with the bread cubes.
  4. Bake until evenly golden brown and crisp, about 15 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 to 10 minutes, which lets them crisp up fully. (Croutons can be made in advance. Allow to cool completely to room temperature, then store in a sealed container for up to 2 weeks.)
  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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