Making croutons from scratch is easy, and cheaper than buying from the store. Customize with any seasonings you prefer for a tasty salad.Jump to Recipe
Almost any time of the year, I enjoy a grilled chicken salad for lunch or dinner. Sometimes both! We will marinate some chicken in Italian salad dressing, then throw it on the grill. Cut it into strips and throw it into a salad. Justin and I like very different salads, but the one thing we can agree on is having croutons in the salad.
I prefer more of a house salad with shredded cheddar cheese, a hard-boiled egg, and Italian dressing. Justin prefers a Greek-style salad with either mozzarella or feta cheese, olives if we have them and Greek dressing. We have always bought the Italian-Style croutons from the grocery store. One day, I decided to try making some at home.
We make our own homemade bread often, so I was able to use up some of that. Most of the time, we can finish off a loaf of bread in a couple of days, but others, it just doesn’t happen. So, rather than throwing it out when it eventually gets moldy, I used it to make some croutons.
In the end, the croutons didn’t take very long. And, since we used almost an entire loaf, we made enough for many salads over the next few days. Making them at home was also much cheaper than the store-bought and we can control exactly what goes in them.
The boys had a bit of fun helping with this one because it works best to use your hands to mix the oil and seasonings onto the bread cubes. Of course, any chance that momma allows them to get messy is always fun!
When the boys help make food, they are more likely to eat it. They’ll sometimes eat a bit of a salad, but their favorite part is the croutons. I made them the deal that they only got to eat these if they ate all of the lettuce too. It kind of worked. Not perfect, but got them to eat a small amount of salad!
Step by Step
Preheat the oven to 350F. Slice the bread into cubes about 1-inch square. If you like your croutons flat, you can cut them in half after making them squares. We didn’t have a problem with the square shape.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk the oil with the seasonings. You can add whichever seasonings you prefer at this time. We use Italian seasoning and garlic powder for our croutons. Add the bread to the bowl and gently mix it all together. I find using hands works best so you can be careful not to tear up the bread too much.
Lay the oil-soaked bread out in a single layer on a baking sheet. If it doesn’t all fit, you may have to do multiple batches of baking.
Bake for about 20-25 minutes, until they are golden brown and crunchy. Stir at least once to turn most of them over as they cook.
Originally Published On: September 11, 2017
Last Updated On: September 4, 2019
- 1 loaf French bread (slightly stale)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 4 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Chop bread into 1 inch cubes
- Mix oil and seasonings in a large bowl
- Add bread to bowl and gently mix to cover bread (using hands works best)
- Lay out on a baking sheet in one layer
- Bake about 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and crunchy
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutrition content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.
36 thoughts on “Italian-Style Croutons”
I love croutons but never think to add any to my dishes… I must confess, I’ve never made my own though, even though they’re so easy to make!
They are always a last-minute thing in my salad, too. Since they aren’t in the refrigerator where everything else is, I sometimes forget.
CROUTONS were my total JAMMMMM when I was a kid – I mean, that’s why I ate salads, YA KNOW?! LOL!! And I especially loved the ITALIAN ones with the garliccccccc! You’re bringing me back 🙂
My boys do the same… they only eat the croutons when we make a salad or at least eat them first!
My daughter is OBSESSED with croutons! I will definitely make these for her!!
My boys love them so much too! When I make them homemade I’ll leave some a bit bigger so they can just grab them by hand to eat.
These sound so good! I love croutons and could eat them by themselves!
There’s nothing wrong with that! I’ve done it before and my boys eat them by themselves all the time.
YUM, give them to me! I am a big crouton lover and these sounds absolutely delish!
Homemade croutons are so yummy and taste fresher than storebought croutons.
I love how you both of different ways of enjoying a salad. I like both versions! I’ve also wondered how hard it would be to make croutons and it’s way simpler than I thought.
I always had thought it would be much harder, too, until we gave it a try.
I enjoy a nice homemade chicken salad all the times. Let me share my secret with you, not only I enjoy those croutons on my salad, I snack on them.
I’ve done that a time or two as well. My boys especially enjoy eating the croutons plain.
I love home made croutons as they really do taste better than the packaged stuff. I eat salads year round, even in the winter, and adding a few to my dish gives me great pleasure.
I eat salads all year too. But we don’t get much of a winter in Houston, so it works well for me.
This looks so good and fresh. My husband loves thick crunchy croutons.
I prefer them that way, too. That’s the benefit of making your own, you control the flavor and size!
i love croutons in our salads! the garlic powder sounds great!
It’s a great addition to the croutons and adds so much flavor.
I definitely have to try this out. I can’t eat any salad without a good ol’ crouton.
I know what you mean! I have to have croutons in my salad.
I loved this idea! especially that it can be done with bread leftovers!
Yes, it’s a great way to use up some bread that may otherwise go to waste.
Oh this is too funny! Great minds think alike – at one point in my blogging schedule, my Caesar Salad with Homemade Croutons was scheduled to come out at the exact same time as this post did! Will have to try this version of a crouton recipe sometime, so we can completely cut out store-bought croutons from our lives!
Oh wow, that’s so crazy! I love when we can cut out storebought processed foods.
I love Croutons!! I haven’t tried making them though. It’s actually really easy and simple to make. Thanks for sharing this!
Making croutons at home is so easy, and they taste better and last longer than their storebought counterparts.
These sound good – I love croutons but rarely think to make them… will definitely have to make some now using your recipe!
As long as you keep them sealed, they last a long time. So you can make them once and have croutons for a few weeks at a time.
Croutons are great topping to add to salads, they make them so tasty! I didn’t know how easy was to make them from scratch!
Homemade croutons don’t take long, and you can then add any flavors you’d like to them for different types of salads.
I’ve always been to chicken to try making my own but it really isn’t that complicated! I’ll have to give it ago!
You should try it! Making croutons is much easier than you would think.
Croutons make or break a salad. These ones look fantastic i can’t wait to make them!
I agree, I have to have croutons on my salad.