Homemade croutons are a great way to use up leftover or stale bread. By making the croutons yourself you can control the amount of fat and spices. All you need is a little over 30 minutes and a some pantry basics to make croutons yourself.
We really enjoy salads around here. We often eat a salad as a main course like Chinese Chicken Salad or Autumn Chopped Salad. One way that I get my kids to eat salad, or at least try them, is by adding croutons. My kids love their “crunchies!” But I don’t really like all the chemical junk on the store bought croutons so I try to make them myself whenever I have extra bread. I keep plastic freezer bags of random bits bread in my freezer. I throw in bread that is going stale to make bread crumbs or croutons.
For this recipe, I used two gallon sized storage bags of a mix of different breads. I used a mix of hamburger rolls, hot dog buns, and whole wheat dinner rolls that never quite rose properly. I let my bread thaw out a bit, but in retrospect, it would have chopped up better frozen because I had a lot of crumbs. This recipe is not exact – just use what you have on hand and adjust the seasonings and oil to taste. Have fun with it and make different flavored homemade croutons!
I baked this batch for 20 minutes at 200 degrees then I stirred. They baked again for 15 minutes and I stirred. Then I had to leave the house so I just turned off the oven and left for a few hours. My husband declared them “delicious” so I guess they turned out just fine! Chop bread in to chunks of any size you want and put in a large bowl.
Drizzle bread chunks with olive oil and sprinkle with desired seasonings. I like to use garlic powder, garlic salt, oregano and parsley. Toss to coat.
Spread bread on to a jelly roll pan or cookie sheet.
Bake at 200 degrees for 20 minutes. Stir croutons. Check to see if bread is dried out. If it is, the croutons are done. Otherwise, bake for another 10 minutes and stir again checking to see if bread is dried out and croutons are done.
Chop bread in to chunks of any size you want and put in a large bowl.
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