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Secrets to a simple but perfect Garlic Bread Recipe

Updated on June 25, 2009

First - the secrets to a great garlic bread

I have always loved garlic bread. It's a guilty pleasure when ordering it at a restaurant. It's so simple to make yourself, but yet it's still irresistible. You start learning which restaurant makes the best garlic bread, it it's usually the one that's almost bathing in butter, since they aren't skimping on ingredients.

It is possible to make a healthier (note - healthier, not healthy) garlic bread that's still wonderfully tasty. I would never be able to bring myself to pouring as much butter over my bread as you see done in restaurants. Being naive is bliss sometimes.

Garlic bread recipe

So, the tricks. Firstly, always use real butter, real garlic, and real parmesan. Sure, you could substitute margarine, garlic powder, and that weird green kraft shaker parmesan cheese, but don't expect the same results.

Secondly, a microplane rasp is a wonderful tool which works perfectly to grate both the garlic and the parmesan cheese. I think this tool itself is a wonder for parmesan cheese. Since parmesan cheese is such a hard cheese, it can be hard to grate without a good grater. The rasp solves that problem. It is also perfect for grating garlic. Mincing and dicing garlic doesn't work too well for garlic bread, because you end up with much to large pieces of garlic. A garlic press works well for garlic bread, but I find it easier to clean a rasp than the garlic press - and I already have to wash it because of the parmesan cheese....and I'm lazy.

Thirdly, having soft butter is key for being able to evenly spread the butter over the bread. If it's not really soft, you end up using far more butter than necessary and end up with an overly greasy garlic bread. I don't like margarine, so that's not an option. Melting the butter works but doesn't making spreading too easy, as you end up pouring it over the bread.

My solution? Melt the butter, mix in the garlic into the butter, then add the parmesan cheese into the butter as well. You end up with a texture similar to soft butter, it's nice and easy spreadable, and having the parmesan cheese blended into the butter allows it to melt onto the bread better. Otherwise I've found it just gets hard on top doesn't necessarily melt.

It's nice to add some dried oregano or basil to the mix too. I like herbs de provence. And if you want a really cheesy garlic bread, grate some mozzarella cheese and sprinkle it on top.

Microplane grater for easy garlic bread

Microplane 40020 Classic Zester/Grater
Microplane 40020 Classic Zester/Grater

My favourite tool for grating garlic, parmesan cheese, fresh ginger, nutmeg.. It has travelled with me from Ontario, to Vancouver BC, to Scotland. One of my must-haves.


Only real parmaesan

Simple Garlic Bread recipe


Two slices of crusty bread

Two tablespoons butter

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 small glove garlic, grated

1/2 tsp dried oregano, basil, rosemary, or herbs de provence

1. Melt the butter in a bowl on the lowest heat your microwave has, better to do it slowly then to rush it.

2. Grate the garlic and parmesan into the bowl

3. Sprinkle the herbs into the bowl

4.  Mix all ingredients together

5. Grill bread under the broiler at a medium-high heat,until lightly browned on top.  Don't set the temperature too high - you want the whole piece of bread to become toasty, not just the top.

- If you want a cheesy garlic bread, add some mozzarella cheese to the bread prior to grilling it.


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