I like to buy fresh Italian & French bread, but we rarely finish it before it gets stale. Also, I often buy torpedo or kaiser rolls for parties, and of course I always buy too many because I don’t want to run out. These fresh breads and rolls tend to get stale very quickly. And these days,  even those dry crusty end pieces from the loaf of sliced bread we use for sandwiches and toast seem a little precious to just toss in the trash. So what to do with all of those bread scraps?

I make Homemade Croutons! (yummy!)


I throw them in a zip-lock bag and stick it in the freezer. Any leftover pieces of bread that would normally get thrown out go in the bag. When I get a nice “collection” of assorted scraps in the bag, I make homemade croutons.

Cube up the bread and throw it in a big bowl.


(There’s those whole wheat crusts that no one wants to make a sandwich out of….)


Drizzle the bread cubes with some olive oil, salt and pepper, and dried Italian seasoning. Toss to coat the bread cubes. (At this point you will be tempted to sample- they smell and taste like the bread that you dip in seasoned olive oil at the Italian restaurant.)


Place in a single layer on a sheet pan.


Bake at 350 degrees about 10 minutes, stir, then continue baking until they are toasted (another 10 or 15 minutes.)


These actually got a little too brown. But they are still yummy. We put them on salads and float them on bowls of soup. We have also been known to eat them by the handful as a crunchy snack. Store them in a sealed plastic container, they will keep in a cool dark place (not the refrigerator) for a week or 2. They are a thousand times better than the croutons that you buy in a box at the grocery store.
You could also save your bread cubes for making bread pudding. Do you have any other ideas?
Not bad for something that you were probably going to toss in the trash anyway, don’t you think?