When it comes to using leftover bread, the possibilities are almost endless. From homemade garlic bread to go with your pasta to delicious bread pudding, you can undoubtedly put that extra loaf to good use.
This article will show you how to do just that. It will provide you with a handful of recipes that you can use your leftover bread in.
Recipes for Using Your Leftover Bread
By the time you finish reading this article, you will probably realize that having leftover bread can actually be a great opportunity to make something that tastes amazing. We will start with one of the easiest recipes that exists: garlic bread.
1 – Garlic Bread
There are not many people in this world who will pass up some crispy garlic bread that is fresh out of the oven. Making it by using your leftover bread is very simple, and it only requires some minced garlic, butter, and your bread.
First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Next, mince a couple cloves of garlic and put them in a pan over medium heat with some butter.
This is the garlic sauce that you will spread on the leftover bread. Once the minced garlic is browned and softened, you can put the garlic onto your bread, along with plain butter.
Put your pieces of garlic bread on a baking sheet, and pop it in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the bread is toasted. Feel free to also sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on top of the bread.
You can serve this on the side with a pasta dish of your choosing.
2 – Cinnamon French Toast
French toast is another fast, easy recipe you can use your leftover bread for. You need a couple of large eggs, a teaspoon of vanilla extract, a teaspoon of cinnamon, and a little butter, as well as whatever toppings you would like on your French toast.
First, crack the eggs into a medium-sized bowl, and use a whisk to mix them with the cinnamon and vanilla extract. Next, place a skillet over medium heat on the stove, and put some butter into the pan.
Once the butter has melted, dip a slice of your leftover bread into the egg, coating the whole piece evenly, and place it in the pan.
You can add as many slices of bread as will fit. It should take a couple minutes for each side to be properly fried to a golden-brown crisp.
After you remove the French toast from the pan, you can add syrup, whipped cream, or anything else you would like. You can also sprinkle a bit of extra cinnamon on top.
Keep in mind that French toast goes especially well with a side of sausage links.
3 – Panzanella Salad
The star ingredients of this salad, aside from your leftover bread, include basil and tomato, in true Italian fashion. You can also throw some hunks of fresh mozzarella onto it.
Keep in mind that this recipe is especially delicious with leftover ciabatta bread and other Italian breads, though any kind will do.
First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and cut your bread up into cubes. Next, dip the bread pieces in extra-virgin olive oil to help them get crispy in the oven.
You can make the salad dressing while your bread cubes are getting toasted in the oven.
To do this, simply mix together some extra virgin olive oil, a bit of red wine, and juices from your tomatoes. You can also add fresh thyme and garlic to the dressing.
After you have toasted your bread cubes in the oven, toss them with fresh basil, tomatoes (which you can cut in half to help release their juices), and mozzarella, and then drizzle the dressing over the salad.
Let the dressing soak into the panzanella salad for 20 to 30 minutes. You can let it sit for longer, but it is best to put it in the fridge to avoid bacteria growth if you let the dressing soak in for a long while.
4 – Bread Pudding
Why not create a delicately sweet dessert with your leftover bread? Bread pudding is a perfect option for using up the rest of that loaf, and it is super easy to make.
Here are the ingredients you will need:
- ½ loaf of leftover bread
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups milk or milk substitute
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and then cut your leftover bread into cubes that are about two inches in size.
Next, warm up the butter, milk, sugar, and vanilla extract in a saucepan over low heat until the butter has completely melted. After this, let the butter mixture cool, and put your cubes of bread into a baking dish that has been greased with butter.
Set the baking dish aside, and in a separate bowl, whisk the two eggs together with the butter mixture. After it is combined, pour it over the bread pieces in the baking dish.
After your oven has finished preheating, pop the baking dish into it for between 30 and 45 minutes. You will know that your bread pudding is done when the edges are slightly browned, and the custard is sturdy but still moves a little when you shake the dish.
You can serve this dessert warm and top it with anything you wish, such as chocolate syrup or fruit.
5 – Homemade Croutons
This final recipe is probably about as easy as the one we started with, garlic bread, and it actually can turn out better when you use older bread.
All you need is your leftover bread, olive oil, and whatever spices you want to use, such as garlic powder and dried basil.
First, you need to preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and pull out a baking sheet. You can lightly grease the sheet if you want to avoid peeling the croutons from it after they finish baking.
Next, take your leftover bread, and cut it into cubes that are about an inch in size. Take the olive oil and spices, and combine them in a bowl big enough to toss the pieces of bread in.
After you have tossed the cubes of bread and thoroughly coated them in olive oil and seasonings, you can spread them out evenly on your baking sheet. Once the oven has preheated, place the sheet into it, and let it bake for about ten minutes, or until the bread has become crispy as croutons should be.
You can throw your crunchy homemade croutons on your favorite salad or in your preferred soup. It is likely you will never be able to go back to store-bought croutons after you taste how delicious these are, so be prepared to hold on to your leftover bread in the future.
You should now have a pretty good idea of what you are going to do with that leftover bread you have sitting on your counter.
Whether you are craving breakfast, dessert, or something savory, this article should have you covered when it comes to getting that leftover bread in your stomach somehow. So, what are you waiting for? Start turning your old bread into yummy creations.
I have a bachelor’s degree in Film/Video/Media Studies, as well as an associates degree in Communications. I began producing videos and musical recordings nearly 15 years ago. I am a guitarist and bassist in Southwest MI and have been in a few different bands since 2009, and in 2012 I began building custom guitars and basses in my home workshop as well. When I’m home, I love spending time with my three pets (a dog, cat, and snake) and gardening in my backyard.