These Homemade Croutons are crunchy and so easy to make. If you have some leftover bread, make croutons and toss them over Caesar Salad as a healthier and tastier alternative to store-bought croutons.

Check out our video tutorial below to learn how to make croutons that are quick, easy, and perfectly crispy.

Homemade croutons on a metal baking sheet.

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Why Make Your Own Croutons?

Like my Homemade Ranch Dressing, inspiration for these homemade croutons came after I read the label on our favorite store-bought version. My son loves to munch on croutons, and the ingredients list on his beloved brand of garlic croutons wasn’t great. Enriched this, dehydrated that, mystery additives, you get my drift.

It turns out, it’s supremely easy to make your own garlic croutons at home. These homemade croutons offer a better alternative that already has my son’s stamp of approval (I know this because the bag I stored them in disappeared shortly thereafter). The best part is, this crouton recipe takes minutes to make in the oven and they keep well.

Easy Crouton Recipe Video

Watch Natasha make crunchy, flavorful homemade croutons in the oven with only a few basic ingredients. You’ll be skipping store-bought croutons from now on. Here’s why:

  • Super Crunchy – These homemade croutons bake up irresistibly crisp and golden, with loads of flavor thanks to some garlic and seasonings.
  • Less Waste – Save any stale bread laying around the pantry and easily transform it into flavorful, crunchy croutons to use on your favorite soups and salads. 
  • Healthier – Homemade croutons are a great way to satisfy a craving for crunch without all the additives, preservatives, and cheap oil that comes with store-bought croutons.

Ingredients

You only need 5 ingredients to make crispy and garlicky homemade croutons (find the full details in the recipe card below).

  • Bread – The best bread for croutons is crusty bread with a spongy center such as Sourdough, Focaccia, Crusty French Bread, or even a Baguette. See our tip below.
  • Olive Oil – Choose a good-quality extra virgin olive oil.
  • Italian Seasoning – This is a popular seasoning blend found in the spice aisle of most grocery stores. It combines dried Italian herbs like basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary. 
  • Garlic – We’ll use real garlic cloves if we have them, otherwise a teaspoon of garlic powder works perfectly.
  • Salt and Pepper
The ingredients for homemade croutons.

Pro Tip: You want your bread to be at least a day old. It’ll be easier to cut and holds its shape better. You could use one of our homemade bread recipes, or try a day-old loaf of bread from your local bakery with great results.

How to Make Croutons

Making croutons from scratch couldn’t be easier. It only takes about 5 minutes of prep.

  1. Mix the Seasonings – First, in a small bowl, whisk together olive oil with Italian seasoning, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  2. Cube the Bread – You can do this using your hands for rustic croutons or use a bread knife to chop the bread into 3/4” cubes. We like to leave the crusts intact for extra texture and crunch.
  3. Toss to Coat – Drizzle the seasoned oil over your bread cubes, and toss to get the bread evenly coated.
  4. Bake – You’ll want to bake your croutons on a flat, rimmed baking sheet. Spread the bread cubes out in a single layer and place the pan into the oven at 375ºF for 15-25 minutes. About halfway through, flip the croutons for even browning.
Step by step instructions how to make croutons

Pro Tip: The exact baking times will vary depending on the kind of bread you’re using as well as the size of your bread chunks. The croutons should be fully dried out and crunchy when they come out of the oven. It’s the perfect excuse to do a taste test toward the end, to check if your croutons are done.

Common Questions

How do you get homemade croutons crispy?

The key to crispy croutons is making sure that they’re fully dried out in the oven and crunchy all the way through. They should not be chewy when they come out of the oven. Bake croutons in a single layer on the baking sheet to crisp up the bread, rather than steaming it.

Why are my homemade croutons soggy?

It could be that you stored your croutons before they were fully cooled. Warm croutons trap moisture, and the croutons can become soggy if they’re stored airtight too soon. This can also cause them to go stale too quickly.

How do you store croutons so they don’t get soft?

Let your baked croutons cool completely, store them in a zip-top bag, and remove as much excess air from the bag as possible. See below for detailed storage instructions.

Homemade croutons on a metal baking sheet.

Ways to Use Homemade Croutons

Croutons are a classic garnish, and they’re equally delicious as a light snack. We recommend adding croutons to soups and salads just before serving, to prevent the crunchy croutons from getting soggy. Enjoy your homemade croutons as a topping with these easy meal ideas:

Make-Ahead

Homemade croutons will keep fresh for weeks when properly stored, so they’re great for making ahead.

  • To Store: Once the baked croutons have cooled completely to room temperature, transfer them to an airtight container or large zip-top bag. Store them on the counter for up to 2 weeks.
  • Freezing: You can also freeze croutons for longer-term storage. We recommend flash-freezing the croutons on a baking sheet until solid, then transferring the frozen croutons to an airtight freezer bag. Store them frozen for up to 1 month and thaw them in the fridge. You may wish to place your defrosted croutons into the oven for a few minutes to crisp them up again before serving.
Homemade croutons stored in a glass mason jar.

Sprinkle these homemade croutons wherever you need a bit of crunch! Making croutons from scratch will elevate any salad that calls for them. We can’t wait to hear your thoughts in the comments.

More Cooking Basics Everyone Should Know

If you love making your favorite snacks and condiments from scratch, try these other easy recipes:

Homemade Croutons Recipe

4.99 from 72 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Homemade croutons on a metal baking sheet.
Turn day-old bread into crunchy homemade croutons! Toss these oven-baked garlic croutons over a Caesar salad or snack on them by the handful.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 16 people (makes 6 cups croutons)

Instructions

  • In a small dish, add oil and seasonings. Stir to combine then set aside and let the flavors infuse into the oil while you chop your bread.
  • You can either tear your bread into rustic-shaped croutons or cut your bread with a serrated knife into 3/4" cubes. Keep the crusts on as they add variety and great crunch to these croutons. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  • Drizzle the seasoned olive oil over your chopped bread and toss until bread crumbs have an even coating of oil.
  • Spread the bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 375˚F for 15-20 minutes, or until crisp, stirring halfway for even browning. Bake time will vary depending on the size of your croutons and the type of bread used, so bake until crunchy and fully dried out.
  • To store, cool to room temperature then transfer to a large zip-top bag or an airtight container. Store at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Nutrition Per Serving

89kcal Calories11g Carbs2g Protein4g Fat1g Saturated Fat1g Polyunsaturated Fat3g Monounsaturated Fat165mg Sodium29mg Potassium1g Fiber1g Sugar2IU Vitamin A0.01mg Vitamin C13mg Calcium1mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Homemade Croutons Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
89
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
4
g
6
%
Saturated Fat
 
1
g
6
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
3
g
Sodium
 
165
mg
7
%
Potassium
 
29
mg
1
%
Carbohydrates
 
11
g
4
%
Fiber
 
1
g
4
%
Sugar
 
1
g
1
%
Protein
 
2
g
4
%
Vitamin A
 
2
IU
0
%
Vitamin C
 
0.01
mg
0
%
Calcium
 
13
mg
1
%
Iron
 
1
mg
6
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crouton recipe, Homemade Croutons, how to make croutons
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $
Calories: 89
Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the creator behind Natasha's Kitchen (established in 2009), and I share family-friendly, authentic recipes. I am a New York Times Best-Selling cookbook author and a trusted video personality in the culinary world. My husband, Vadim, and I run this blog together, ensuring every recipe we share is thoroughly tested and approved. Our mission is to provide you with delicious, reliable recipes you can count on. Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy you are here.

Read more posts by Natasha

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Shab Mitha
    June 3, 2023

    Sharks is in the pic with the dressing being poured into its open jaws!

    Reply

  • Alicia Forster
    June 3, 2023

    I found Sharky! He’s in the croutons, drinking the dressing as it’s being poured onto the croutons.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 3, 2023

      Good eye, Alicia!

      Reply

  • Jean Vazquez
    June 3, 2023

    Sharkie is in the pic where you pour the oil/herb mix into the bread crumbs. Pic 2/6 down on right

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 3, 2023

      Yes! You’ve caught him. We really need to be better about hiding him. Haha!

      Reply

  • Karen
    June 3, 2023

    Hi Natasha,
    Love all your videos and recipes and can’t wait to get your cookbook that I pre-ordered. Oh, I found sharkey in the picture of croutons in the bowl with the oil dressing being poured over them.😊♥️

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 3, 2023

      Hi Karen! Thank you so much for ordering my cookbook. I’m excited for you to get your copy!

      Reply

  • Freda
    June 2, 2023

    Sharpie in 2nd picture on right with dressing going right into his mouth

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 2, 2023

      You got him!

      Reply

  • Rebecca Hoge
    June 2, 2023

    Found sharkie in photo with crouton pouring dressing over him!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 2, 2023

      Great catch, Rebecca!

      Reply

  • Jose
    June 2, 2023

    Hi,

    I found Sharky. Sharky is eating dressing in the croutons picture.

    Hope I win!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 2, 2023

      Great eye, Jose! I hope you try this recipe soon!

      Reply

  • Cookie Cala
    June 2, 2023

    Very easy, quick, effective and I might add very handy to have around!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 2, 2023

      Yes, indeed they are! We love making these at home. So simple to make.

      Reply

  • Maryjane
    June 2, 2023

    I saw sharky in the picture where you were pouring the sauce on the croutons.

    Reply

  • Denise Simon
    June 2, 2023

    Shark is on page with 6 pictures. Shark is located in picture on right with dressing being poured in sharks mouth in bowl.

    Reply

  • Devika Naidu
    June 2, 2023

    I saw Sharkie in the bread croutons when dressing was put in. Yummm

    Reply

  • Deana Palmieri
    June 2, 2023

    Sharkie is in bowl of croutons drinking dressing Very cute Love your recipes Always.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 2, 2023

      Thank you, Deana! So glad you enjoy them.

      Reply

  • Barbara
    June 2, 2023

    Found sharky in the croutons were the dressing oil seasoning is poured on the croutons sharky looks like it’s being poured into his mouth lol

    Reply

  • Cheryl Jansen
    June 2, 2023

    I found sharky..in with the croutons and drinking the dressing

    Reply

  • Alicia Hirschi
    June 2, 2023

    So fun! Sharky is enjoying a mouth full of seasoning mix in the fourth picture of the step by step photos of making croutons!! Such a fun idea!!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 3, 2023

      Thanks for participating in the game, Alicia! Sharky has become quite the celebrity. Haha!

      Reply

  • Eva Falke
    June 2, 2023

    I saw sharks getting fed the dressing you made for the curtons. He’s in the bowl with his mouth open where your pouring in the oil mixture 🙂

    Reply

  • Jeanie Blair
    June 2, 2023

    Recipe looks great, as always! I spy Sharkie in the photo with the dressing being poured from a glass measuring cup over the croutons!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 2, 2023

      Sharky was being sneaky!

      Reply

  • Daisy Hernandez
    June 2, 2023

    Sharks 🦈 is on the fourth picture to the right drinking the dressing

    Reply

  • Simeon
    June 2, 2023

    Found Sharky in the 4th photo you are pouring dressing in Sharkey’s mouth

    Reply

  • Kristyn
    June 2, 2023

    I’ll take homemade croutons over store bought any day!! These are crisp & delicious & the perfect addition to any salad.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      June 2, 2023

      Totally agree!

      Reply

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