Learn how to make the BEST Crostini at home ... it's so simple! These crunchy mini toasts are a delicious, easy to prepare appetizer you'll make again and again. Pair them with our favorite topping ideas for an impossible to resist snack!
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Are you looking for an easy crowd-pleasing appetizer? One that works for pretty much any situation? Then you're going to LOVE this Crostini recipe!
There is something so fancy about these tiny toasted bread slices, especially when pared with a tempting topping (piled high, of course). They feel special, but they're also truly simple to make. And everyone loves this easy Italian appetizer, which is a major win when you're planning a party!
Don't save these toasted slices of deliciousness just for parties though. Make this recipe anytime you find yourself with an extra baguette or a bit of leftover or stale bread ... they make a delightful snack or light meal, too!
Ready to try this easy recipe for yourself? Then keep reading for all the mouthwatering details ... plus, simple tips and tons of crave-worthy topping ideas!
The best thing about this recipe? It uses super basic ingredients that you probably already have on hand! Here's what you'll need:
- Bread - Because the ingredients are so minimal, make sure to start with high-quality bread. A baguette is the classic choice, and it really does work best. Stale bread is fine ... this is an excellent way to use up leftover bread!
- Olive Oil - You'll brush the slices with extra virgin olive oil before baking. The oil helps the bread crisp up, while adding a wonderful taste.
- Salt - A pinch of salt is all you need for a boost of flavor. I recommend using Kosher salt for best results.
This recipe is naturally vegetarian, vegan, and dairy free, which makes it perfect for creating an easy appetizer that everyone can eat! To make this recipe gluten-free, simply start with a GF baguette.
Best Bread for Crostini
When making Crostini, you want to use a long, thin loaf of bread. Look for crusty artisan bread that will stand up to slicing thinly. A baguette works best, but other types of rustic bread will also work, as long as they are narrow enough. You can also use whole grain, sourdough, or flavored breads if you can find them.
No matter what bread you choose, keep in mind that the slices should be just big enough for two bites ... any larger and things will get messy once you add toppings!
You'll Also Need
To make this recipe, you'll need a sharp serrated knife, which is essential for neatly cutting the bread into thin slices. You'll also use a pastry brush for brushing the slices with oil before baking, and you'll need a large baking sheet or two (these sheet pans are my fave!) to bake the bread.
How to Make Crostini
Homemade Crostini couldn't be easier to make! You'll find a detailed recipe card below, but here's an overview of the steps:
- Slice bread. Begin by thinly slicing your bread into ¼-inch thick slices. You should be able to get about 40 slices from a ½-pound (255 gram) baguette, as long as you slice it thinly. Tip: Slice the bread on an angle. That way, there will be more surface area for toppings.
- Brush with oil. Next, brush both sides of each slice with olive oil. Then lightly sprinkle the slices with salt (just one side).
- Bake. Cook the bread until it is crisp throughout and lightly browned on the edges. Watch it closely so it doesn't overcook. Tip: Because the bread is sliced so thin, you do not need to flip the slices as they cook.
- Add toppings. Once the bread is crisp throughout, remove it from your oven. Then add your favorite toppings.
And that's all there is to ... time to enjoy your crunchy baked baguette slices! Wasn't that easy? Serve Crostini with your choice of toppings (check out the next section for lots of irresistible ideas!), alongside a dip or spread, or with your favorite soup for dipping.
Tip: To make Garlic Crostini, cut a large clove of garlic in half. Then rub the cut side over the freshly baked bread slices.
Wondering what to put on Crostini? This recipe is super versatile ... you can top these crispy mini toasts with almost anything! Here are some ideas to inspire you (feel free to mix and match):
- Tomatoes - Juicy tomatoes pair perfectly with this crunchy base! Mix them with garlic, basil, and olive oil for a bruschetta-esque topping, pair them with other ingredients (like cheese or olives), or drizzle them with a balsamic glaze. Cooked tomatoes work great, too ... these Roasted Grape Tomatoes are one of my favorite toppings!
- Mushrooms - Sautéed mushrooms are a classic topper. Serve them on their own or atop a creamy cheese, like goat. Don't miss my amazing Mushroom Crostini!
- Avocado - Turn these Crostini crackers into mini avocado toasts! Mash avocado with lemon juice, then season with salt. Spread the mashed avocado over the bread, then drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with Everything Bagel Seasoning or crushed red pepper flakes, or top with crumbled feta.
- Artichokes - Marinated artichokes would make an excellent topping. Serve them on their own or paired with other ingredients, like tomatoes or olives.
- Other Vegetables - These toasts are perfect for cleaning out your fridge! Almost any fresh, pickled, sautéed, or roasted veggie makes a great topper. Try roasted asparagus, caramelized onions, mashed peas, roasted sweet potatoes or carrots, sautéed or roasted bell peppers, cauliflower, and more.
- Fruit - Sweet fruits (fresh or dried) are unexpectedly delicious! Figs, apples, peaches, pears, strawberries, blackberries, grapes, citrus, blueberries, and more will all work. Enjoy them on their own or pair with cheese for a sweet-savory combo.
- Jam - Gourmet jams will also work great! Try pairing jam with savory ingredients like cheese for the most intriguing flavor.
- Cheese - Flavorful cheeses (like feta, ricotta, blue, goat, brie, parmesan, burrata, or fresh mozzarella) are a natural paired with these crisp mini toasts! Depending on the cheese, you can spread it, slice it, or sprinkle it over the top as a finishing touch. Try my crave-worthy Goat Cheese Crostini!
- Dip - Serve Crostini alongside your favorite dips / spreads. Try them with Guacamole, Homemade Hummus, Cream Cheese Dip, Baked Ricotta Dip, Caramelized Onion Dip, Mexican Spinach Dip, Whipped Goat Cheese, and more!
- Pesto - Classic Pesto Sauce can be spread on the bread or drizzled over other ingredients. Other flavors, like Rosemary, Macadamia, Cilantro, or Kale Pesto will all work great, too.
- Olives - Briny olives are an excellent way to add a punch of flavor, especially when paired with other toppings, like fresh tomatoes. Tapenade would also be delish.
- Roasted Garlic - Spread these bite-sized toasts with homemade Roasted Garlic for a quick, savory snack.
- Capers - Salty capers make a wonderful garnish! Pair with anything that needs a little pop, like fresh veggies or mild cheese.
- Herbs - A sprinkle of fresh herbs (such as thyme, basil, rosemary, chives, and more) is the perfect way to add touch a bright, fragrant flavor.
- Nuts - Add a little crunch by finishing your appetizer with a pinch of chopped nuts. Walnuts, pecans, pistachios, almonds, and more would all work well.
Tip: To keep Crostini from getting soggy, make sure to add the toppings (especially juicy ones, like tomatoes) just before serving. You can also place the toppings in bowls and let your guests serve themselves.
Store leftover Crostini in an airtight container (such as a ziptop bag). It tastes best when eaten within a few days, but will stay fresh for up to two weeks (as long as it is completely dry and toasted throughout). You may also freeze it for one to two months.
Looking for similar recipes? Try one of these easy ideas next:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Crostini (which is Italian for "little toasts") are thin, small slices of bread (typically a baguette) that have been brushed with olive oil, then baked until crisp. They're usually served as an appetizer with various toppings, such as veggies, cheeses, and more. The singular version is crostino.
Crostini and bruschetta are similar, but different. Crostini is typically made with a baguette, brushed with olive oil, and then baked just until crisp. Bruschetta is more often made with rustic-style bread, sliced a little thicker, and rubbed with garlic. It's also traditionally prepared on the grill, giving the finished bread a little char.
Crostini may be served hot, room temperature, or cold, depending on the toppings you pair it with. It's often eaten at room temperature, making it perfect for feeding large groups at parties!
Crostini should be crunchy, but not necessarily hard. If your Crostini is too hard, try slicing it thinner (about ¼-inch thick is best) or choosing a bread with a lighter texture.
Crostini, which means "little toasts" in Italian, are small slices of toasted bread.
- 1 (½ pound / 255 gram) baguette (see note)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt
- Serrated Knife
- Pastry Brush
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Using serrated knife, slice baguette thinly on an angle, ¼-inch thick.
- Place bread slices on a baking sheet in a single layer (you'll probably need more than one). Brush lightly with olive oil. Flip, then brush the other side with oil.
- Sprinkle slices lightly with salt.
- Bake for 5 to 10 minutes, or until crisp throughout and lightly golden (no need to flip).
- Serve with your choice of toppings. Enjoy!