Kitchen Tip: Making Homemade Croutons

Breads, Kitchen Tips & Tricks | 18 comments

I never buy croutons. I think it’s a waste of money and I can make them better at home anyway. The Light Whole Wheat Baguette I baked on Sunday is perfect for homemade croutons. It’s already a little dried out and I don’t want the last bit to go to waste.

how to make croutons

The beauty of making homemade croutons is that you control what is in them. The ingredient quality, lack of preservatives or any other nasties, and the flavor. You don’t have to buy several different varieties depending on your mood. Instead, just change up the seasonings.

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How To Make Homemade Croutons

1. Start with quality bread for quality croutons. Leftover homemade bread is perfect for this, especially if it is a couple days old. Baguette or French Bread are my favorite choices. If you can’t use homemade, use a nice bakery loaf.

2. Cut the bread into 3/4 to 1 inch sized cubes. They won’t all be perfect, but try to get them at least close to the same size so the smaller ones don’t over-cook while you wait for the larger ones to be done.

3. Drizzle the bread cubes with 1-2 tablespoons of melted butter or olive oil per 2 cups of bread cubes, tossing to evenly coat.

4. Add any seasonings you desire. Some ideas are: salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, fresh herbs (thyme or rosemary are great), or dried herbs (basil or Italian seasoning are great).

5. Bake on a cookie sheet in a preheated 375 degree F oven for 10-20 minutes, or until the bread cubes have reached your desired crunchiness. Stir the croutons every couple of minutes to ensure even browning.

  • Alternatively you can toast in a toaster oven.
  • I like them a little crunchier for use in soup since they will soak up a lot of liquid. Less crunchy croutons become soggy faster.

6. Cool completely before storing in an airtight container to maintain freshness and crunch.

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Homemade croutons can serve many purposes: garnishing a salad, adding crunch to a big bowl of soup (see: Roasted Red Pepper Soup for an example), or to make stuffing. Do you have any favorite uses for homemade croutons?

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    Tracy - January 11, 2011 @ 8:06 am

    I love being able to control what goes into my food. So many times it is packed with preservatives, or worse, unnecessary allergens. Love this!


  • 2
    peggy - January 11, 2011 @ 8:10 am

    I too love home-made croutons. My MIL makes the best! Lots of crunch and spice without much fat. Thanks!


  • 3
    Kristen - January 11, 2011 @ 8:11 am

    I love making croutons! Kids will eat them like they are going out of style.


  • 4
    Cookbook Queen - January 11, 2011 @ 8:19 am

    mmm….I LOVE homemade croutons but have never actually made them myself.

    Thanks for the tips, I plan on trying them!!


  • 5
    Wenderly - January 11, 2011 @ 10:37 am

    Yet another reason for me to make this wheat baguette!


  • 6
    Liz @ Blog is the New Black - January 11, 2011 @ 11:24 am

    Love homemade croutons!


  • 7
    Katie - January 11, 2011 @ 11:25 am

    I agree! Homemade are the best! You can also make them in a snap by toasting them in a little olive oil in saute pan. I hate the store bought ones because they are way too hard and I feel like they’ll break my teeth!


  • 8
    Heather (Heather's Dish) - January 11, 2011 @ 12:08 pm

    homemade croutons are the bee’s knees…they’re so amazing and i burn my tongue on them every time i try them!


  • 9
    Mindy - January 11, 2011 @ 12:29 pm

    I use my homemade croutons for gazpacho in the summertime. It adds a nice crunch to the soup!


  • 10
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction - January 11, 2011 @ 2:58 pm

    Yum! I love croutons! Great tips :)


  • 11
    ann - January 11, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

    Great idea for the croutons. My family loves them.


  • 12
    Lisa {Smart Food & Fit} - January 12, 2011 @ 5:25 am

    I love making homemade croutons, I make gluten free croutons all the time for my gluten intolerant sister.
    I use homemade croutons for my stuffing instead of the store bought stuff. Another beautiful photo!


  • 13
    Happy When Not Hungry - January 12, 2011 @ 7:12 am

    I love homemade croutons! Your salad looks delicious too!


  • 14
    betsy breuer - January 12, 2011 @ 12:38 pm

    I want the salad and the croutons! But I do need to make these.


  • 15
    Peggy - January 14, 2011 @ 7:00 am

    I’m with you on this one! I think it’s pointless to buy that $3 or $4 bag of croutons, when really, all you need to do it cub up some leftover bread at home (which most households normally have anyway!) Great tips!


  • 16
    Patty - January 16, 2011 @ 8:41 am

    I make mine just like you make your, sometimes I add cayenne making croutons spicy (when in the mood, or making a spicy soup). I also like to eat croutons as a snack.


  • 17
    Twinkies - January 28, 2011 @ 6:03 am

    I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work Look forward to reading more from you in the future.


  • 18
    Kenni - February 15, 2011 @ 7:46 pm

    I always take these to the movies instead of popcorn.


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