Eating anything with marinara sauce is just so much better when you have a garlicky, crispy piece of bread, with a soft center to sop up the extra sauce. So, while I was planning my Pesto Stuffed Shells this week, I thought about grabbing a box of garlic bread from the freezer aisle… after all, it’s very cheap, only about $2 a box. Then I started thinking, “Well, I can buy a HUGE loaf of fresh french bread for a dollar… can I make homemade garlic bread for less?” You bet!
Originally posted 3-6-2010, updated 1-16-2017
What Kind of Bread is Best?
Many grocery stores sell giant loaves of Italian bread hot from their bakery every day for $1-$2. I like these slightly large and fluffy loaves for garlic bread because they soak up all that buttery goodness really well. You can also use French bread or a baguette if that’s what you have available. Just. keep in mind that baking time can vary depending on the density of your bread.
How to Freeze Homemade Garlic Bread
After spreading the delicious garlic butter mixture onto your loaf, freeze the garlic bread flat on a baking sheet until it’s solid, then transfer it to an air-tight container. It can then be baked straight from the freezer, with just a couple of extra baking time added. Or you can slice the bread first, like in my Freezer Garlic Bread recipe.
How to Make Garlic Bread even Better
Garlic bread is pretty magical as-is, but if you want to go over the top there are a few things you can add to garlic bread to make it even better. Here are some ideas:
- Try stirring a tablespoon or two of grated Parmesan into the garlic butter mixture for a super umami punch and a slightly crispy top layer.
- If you like more melty cheese, try topping your garlic bread with a hefty handful of shredded mozzarella and BAM, you have cheesy garlic bread.
- Try using flavored olive oil in the garlic butter mix. Chili oil or herb-infused oil would be incredible!
- Add more fresh herbs. If you have an herb garden, try chopping some fresh basil, oregano, or thyme and mixing that into the garlic butter.
- Add pesto. Try mixing a spoonful of pesto (any flavor) into the garlic butter for an extra punch of flavor.
- Make it extra garlicky by adding some garlic powder in addition to the fresh garlic in the garlic butter mix. Fresh garlic and garlic powder have different flavors, so you’ll get an even more robust garlic flavor.
And don’t forget to make some Homemade Pizza sauce to dip your homemade garlic bread (or cheesy garlic bread) in!
See this recipe used in my weekly meal prep.
Homemade Garlic Bread
- 1 loaf Italian or French bread, approx. 24" long ($1.29)
- 4 Tbsp butter, room temperature ($0.44)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced ($0.24)
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped ($0.12)
- a pinch salt ($0.02)
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. In a bowl, stir together the room temperature butter, olive oil, minced garlic, chopped parsley, and a pinch of salt until relatively smooth.
- Cut the bread into two 12" long pieces, then cut each piece open lengthwise. Lay the bread on a baking sheet cut sides facing up. Spread the garlic butter mixture evenly over the open surfaces of the bread.*
- Bake the bread for 10-15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and crispy. Cut the bread into 2-inch sections and serve hot.
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Scroll down for the step by step photos!
How to Make Homemade Garlic Bread – Step By Step Photos
Begin by preheating the oven to 400ºF. In a bowl, combine 4 Tbsp room temperature butter, 2 Tbsp olive oil, 3 cloves of minced garlic, about 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, and a pinch of salt.
Mix these ingredients together until they’re evenly combined.
Cut one large French loaf (24 inches) into two 12-inch sections, then cut each section open lengthwise. Lay the bread pieces on a baking sheet, cut side facing up. Spread the garlic butter mixture over the open surfaces of the bread.
Bake the garlic bread in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, or until it is golden brown and crispy on the edges. Cut the bread into two-inch sections and serve.
Yaassssssss. Garlic bread ❤️ forever.