Make Your Own Series: Bread Crumbs & Croutons

I don’t know about you, but I love making my own bread crumbs and croutons in place of those that are conveniently made for us and sold at big box stores. Some reasons I like to make my own are they are generally cheaper, quantities needed can be easily adjusted based on the recipe, it can be made easily by students as part of a lab and then used in future labs and most importantly….I know exactly what is in the product!  No weird, unpronounceable ingredients! So in this Make Your Own Series, I’ll be sharing products that can easily be made from scratch, using common ingredients. Sharing…Make Your Own Series: Bread Crumbs & Croutons.


  • Let no piece of bread go to waste! I always had odd numbers of bread items left over from labs such as Baked French Toast, garden toast as well as from my sandwich unit. Keep a container or bag specifically for the heels and leftover pieces of bread or rolls until you have enough for the following recipes or enough for each kitchen to make a batch of bread crumbs or croutons in a lab, storing for future recipes.

Homemade Bread Crumbs Recipe

  • Take all of your stale, dried out bread pieces, especially the heels, break them into smaller pieces and place them in a food processor a few at a time. Process until fine and store in an airtight jar.  If you wish to add additional seasonings to your crumbs, place them in the food processor with your bread pieces. You can add garlic powder, parsley, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and/or basil in small amounts (1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of each per 4 ounces of bread).  I have never baked my bread crumbs before storing, but some people like to. If you’re one of those people, transfer your processed crumbs to a jelly roll pan. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 8-12 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Cool completely before storing in an airtight jar.

Homemade Croutons Recipe

  • Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. While it’s preheating, cut your stale bread (slices, rolls, baguettes. etc.) into cubes. When you have 2 cups, transfer to a shallow baking pan or  jelly roll pan. Melt 1/4 cup of butter in the microwave. Stir in 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder. If you desire other seasonings, you can also add 1 teaspoon dried dill or 1 teaspoon dried parsley.  Pour the melted butter mixture over the bread cubes and toss. Spread the bread cubes out into a single layer and bake for 10 minutes. Stir and finish baking for 5 more minutes until the cubes are toasted and dry.  Cool and store in an airtight container.  This recipe yields approximately 2 cups of croutons.

Ideas for Use

  • Use the homemade breadcrumbs when making breaded….anything….air fried pickles, chicken tenders, meatballs, toppings for casseroles, etc.
  • Have students prepare the croutons as part of a lab that calls for them such as French onion soup or a unit or lesson on salads (which I hope to offer on the website in the next few months).
  • Even if you don’t need either of these for a current lab, but like to have them on hand, then let your students prepare them for you as a lab for future use. The croutons especially will give them some practice using a knife and the bread crumbs will show them how to use a food processor. And, if you’re add any seasonings, they can apply measuring skills.

Recipes Ideas


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.