Healthy eating is probably one of the most common New Year’s resolutions, right? Well, if you’ve resolved to eat healthier this year, make these croutons. They’re guaranteed to amp up your boring salads! The slight bit of cheesiness and the lovely herb notes are deliciously pleasing. I tell you what, these croutons are so good that I even eat them on their own sometimes as a snack! Plus, they’re way easy to make.
You know what else? They’re the perfect size. Maybe I’m weird, but I find it annoying when croutons are so large that they have to be stabbed with a fork, which then just causes them to crumble. No, these ones are perfectly small and “scoop-able.” Of course, if you happen to like giant croutons, you can go ahead and cut these into giant pieces. 😉
So far we’ve got amplification to salads, ease to make, and perfect size, BUT if you need another reason to make these croutons, here you go: They’re a great use for leftover bread! I made too many dinner rolls for Christmas dinner, and I didn’t use the whole loaf of French bread for my egg bake. Therefore, lots of bread was about to be thrown out if it didn’t get used up real soon. Enter Homemade Parmesan & Herb Mini Croutons! Yum.
If you’ve never made croutons before, go grab some bread and get started! You’ll never want to spend money on store-bought croutons again.
- approx. 7 c. cubed bread (I used 5 each of leftover dinner rolls and French bread slices.)
- 1/4 c. plus optional 2 Tbs. oil, divided (I used olive oil.)
- 2 Tbs. grated parmesan cheese
- 1 Tbs. Italian herbs
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the bread into 1/4 inch cubes (or larger, if you prefer bigger croutons).
- Pour the 1/4 c. of oil into a large bowl, and stir in the herbs and parmesan cheese. Add the bread cubes, and toss until all are coated.
- Spread the bread cubes in an even layer on the baking sheet. Add the additional 2 Tbs. oil if needed; you want nearly every cube to have at least some oil on it.
- Bake the croutons for 30 to 45 minutes, or until they’re crispy and golden, stirring every ten minutes or so.
- Enjoy the croutons on a salad or as a snack! Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Whether you’re bored with plain salads, you’re looking for a snack alternative to potato chips, you’ve got some leftover bread to use up, or all of the above, consider making these croutons.
In other news, say hello to the newest member of our family: Petra the dog! 😀
Isn’t she cute? Petra is a 10-week-old black lab/shepherd mix, and we’ve had her for just a couple weeks. A local animal rescue organization found her abandoned and living outside in the -60 degree windchill weather. Brrr! She’s quite the handful (as most puppies are), but we love her to pieces, and she’s sure happy to be living in a warm home with such fun people. 😉
We like taking adventure/nature walks on the frozen Red River (when it’s not 30 below, that is).
Wherever you are, I hope you’re staying warm and having a wonderful 2014!
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