Janisa loves eating and experimenting in the kitchen. She enjoys creating new recipes and homemade versions of popular store-bought foods.
Why Homemade Garlic Bread?
Despite being slightly more time-consuming, making garlic bread at home has numerous advantages compared to buying something ready-made at the store. Store-bought garlic bread is delicious, I won't argue—but you never know just how long it's been sitting on the shelf, nor do you know exactly what was used to make it.
Working in the bakery section at the local grocery store forever changed the way I see store-bought garlic bread. At the store, my duties involved picking out the loaves of bread that were (almost) past their best-before dates. Next, I would cut the loaves almost in half lengthwise and then apply a thin layer of "garlic spread" inside each loaf. The end result smelled all right, but I could never look at store-bought garlic bread the same way now that I knew how it was made.
Store-bought or Homemade
Creating the Recipe
It was a container of garlic butter that made me want to try to make garlic bread at home. I've seen garlic spread sold at stores, but what I truly wanted was something made from scratch. I experimented by spreading this garlic butter on some bread and then throwing it in the toaster. It tasted good, but it felt like there was still something missing.
My next step was to discover what it was that added that special touch to exceptional garlic bread and how to replicate it at home, without using anything artificial. The trick was herbs, which help to give the bread a delicious aroma.
The challenging part was figuring how much to use of each ingredient to make the perfect garlic bread. This step involved a lot of experimentation and eating garlic bread on a daily basis.
I like my garlic bread cheesy, so I decided to incorporate this ingredient into my own recipe as well. You can add more or less cheese to taste or completely leave it out for a more 'traditional' garlic bread.
Prep Time: 7 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Ready in: 22 minutes
Read More From Delishably
Makes: 1 loaf of garlic bread; can be enough for 6 or more people if served as an appetizer
- 1 loaf of bread—I usually use French bread, but you can experiment a few times and decide which kind you prefer. Italian and calabrese bread are good for making garlic bread too.
- 3 tbsp of minced/chopped garlic—This is around 4-6 garlic cloves. Depending on your preference, available time and available ingredients, you may decide to use fresh garlic or jarred minced garlic. I find that fresh garlic gives the bread a slightly stronger taste, but jarred garlic works just as well. You may consider adding slightly more garlic (especially if you decide to use jarred garlic) for a stronger taste.
- 3/4 to 1 cup softened butter—Use more butter if you're going to want a moister bread with a richer taste. Less butter is better if your objective is to make something that resembles garlic toast. Salted butter can be used, but in this case, you do not need to add extra salt.
- Salt—to taste
Herbs are totally optional if you don't like them or don't have any at hand, but without them, your garlic bread will taste like there's something missing. You can add more herbs or take some out if you prefer, but the herbs listed below are those that I consider to be the best for garlic bread. At least, in my opinion. Fresh or dried herbs can be used.
If I am using fresh herbs, I take around 1.5 tbsp of each. When using dried herbs, I use around 2 tsp of each.
- 1/4 cup grated cheese—I love garlic bread with cheese, so my perfect recipe definitely would contain a generous amount. Parmesan or mozzarella cheese can be used for this recipe. For cheese lovers, I would recommend increasing this amount to 1/2 cup or more, depending on your preferences. However, based on my experience, normal people begin to say that the snack tastes too much like cheese bread if you use more than 1/4 cup of cheese.
Preparing this garlic bread for baking takes minutes, especially if you don't need to cut or grate any of your ingredients.
- Preheat your oven to 400ºF (200ºC).
- If using fresh ingredients, cut the herbs as small as you can (or use larger pieces if you prefer), grate the cheese and cut the garlic very small. I have heard of people who grate garlic, but I don't find this very convenient since garlic cloves are quite small.
- Place all ingredients into a medium bowl and mix until you get a uniform mixture. This procedure takes 2-3 minutes at most.
- Now, begin to cut your loaf like you would if you were making a large hotdog bun (cut it lengthwise, but don't cut all the way through).
- Spread your mixture generously on both the top and the bottom of the inside of the loaf.
- Wrap the bread in aluminum foil and place it on the middle oven rack. It shouldn't leak, but you can place the wrapped bread on a baking sheet just to be sure.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- Take the bread out of the oven and open the aluminum foil. Bake for 5 more minutes. This should help make the bread crispy and golden on the outside.
- Serve hot and enjoy! Homemade garlic bread is especially delicious with pasta.
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Moist or Crispy
As a garlic bread lover, I have eaten various kinds of this savory snack over the years. When it comes to taste and texture, I noticed that garlic bread tends to be either crispy or moist. In my opinion, in order to come up with a universal recipe for good garlic bread, one needs to find the perfect combination of crispy and moist. That was one of my challenges when coming up with this recipe. Store-bought garlic bread comes in foil bags, which help it retain its moisture when it is baked. Garlic toast slices tend to be made by placing them on the rack uncovered. My recipe uses both of these techniques in order to make the garlic bread moist and juicy on the inside and crispy and toasted on the outside. I hope you enjoy!
I would advise against making this garlic bread in advance since it may be very hard for you (or someone in your household) to resist the temptation to sample a little too much before you're ready to serve it. The last time I made garlic bread was less than a week ago and it was gone before I got a chance to take a good photo, so be careful!
© 2018 Janisa