- Food: Crisp Crostini
- Writer: Nicolas Wilson
- Content-Type: Food Blog
Who doesn’t enjoy a golden and crisp crostini? Crostini are thin slices of crusty bread drizzled with olive oil and roasted to perfection in the oven or on the grill.
I like how it shatters in my teeth, providing a nice contrast to a creamy spread or dip.
Crostini is an Italian term that means “small crusts.” Crostini are often associated with party appetizers and cheese plates, but you don’t need to throw a party to enjoy these small toasts.
A stale baguette, for example, can be revived by turning it into crostini. With crostini and condiments from your refrigerator, you can make a quick lunch or snack in no time.
Start with a round of crostini and a creamy spread to make an everyday supper more festive. Crostini is the solution!
To go with my caponata recipe, I recently cooked some crostini. As I looked up how to create crostini in my bruschetta recipe, I noticed I wasn’t the only one who was stumped.
As a result, here I am waxing poetic about Italian toasts. Did you know that crostino is the singular form of crostini?
Today, I’m sharing all of my favorite crostini topping ideas as well as a simple, reliable handmade crostini recipe. In the comments, let me know how you like your crostini!
Tips and Tricks for Crostini
Before you start, here’s all you need to know about crostini:
- Start with a decent loaf of bread. A baguette is ideal, but any stretched crusty bread would suffice.
- If your bread is stale, don’t worry; your crostini will still taste great. (However, do not use bread that has mold on it.)
- Slicing bread is best done with a serrated knife. I recommend slicing your bread thinly, approximately 1/2-inch thick or a little less—any thinner and your bread will fall apart.
- Cut your bread on the diagonal to make larger crostini with more room for toppings (as shown in these photos).
- Cut the slices straight across for smaller, bite-sized appetizers (perpendicular to the long edge).
- You don’t have to flip your toasts while they’re baking. Regardless, all sides of my always turn out wonderfully golden.
- When the crostini are golden on top and sound hollow when tapped, they’re done.
- Add a small sprinkling of salt and any extra toppings you choose to your crostini. Continue reading for topping ideas!
Temperatures and Timing for Crostini
I frequently need to toss crostini on an open oven rack while I’m baking something else when I’m prepping for events. As long as the timing is adjusted appropriately, this works out nicely.
I just advise against using the broiler because the temperatures fluctuate greatly and you may easily burn your toast. My notes are as follows:
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and bake for 10 to 12 minutes (Fahrenheit)
- At 400 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes
- 450 degrees for 6 to 9 minutes
For a smokey flavor and grill markings, you can also grill your crostini. It’s quite straightforward. For further information, refer to the recipe notes.
Crostini Dips & Spreads
This crostini is strong and works well as a dipping vessel. Alternatively, simply smear something creamy on top. Room-temperature goat cheese or other soft cheeses are always a good choice.
- Avocado Pesto
- Baked Goat Cheese and Tomato Sauce (shown above)
- Pimento Cheese
- Creamy Homemade Hummus or Green Goddess Hummus
- Dip with Spicy Red Peppers and Feta
Toppings for the Crostini
Add any of the following to your pile:
- sliced cheese
- Jam or fruit
- Pickled or roasted honey peppers
- Pickles or pickled vegetables of any kind
- Tapenade or pitted olives
- Garlic that has been roasted
- Vegetables roasted: Brussels sprouts, carrots, cauliflower, and other similar vegetables
- Balsamic glaze or thick balsamic vinegar
- Fresh, leafy herbs, torn (basil, dill, parsley, etc.)
- sliced tomatoes
|Time to Prepare: 6 minutes
Time to cook: 9 minutes
15-minute total time
In this straightforward recipe, you’ll learn how to make golden, toasted crostini. They’re simple to prepare in the oven (or on the grill, see note). Crostini is an excellent base for party appetizers or a light supper with side dishes. Depending on the length of the baguette, this recipe makes 16 to 24 small toasts (demi or full size).
- 1 pound of baguette (crusty French bread)
- as needed 2 to 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
- To taste, flaky sea salt or fine salt
Instructions For Crisp Crostini
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit (or a gas grill*). If preferred, line a large-rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup. You may need to make the toast in two batches if your baking sheet is smaller than mine.
- Cut the baguette into 12-inch wide sections on the diagonal. On my large baking sheet, I can generally fit 20 to 24 slices; you may have some bread left over. Brush each slice with olive oil on both sides (this will require about 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil).
- Place the slices in a single layer on your prepared baking sheet and bake for 6 to 9 minutes on the center rack, or until crisp and golden on top. Season the toasts with a pinch of salt. If preferred, transfer the toasts to a serving tray and use them as desired.
- HOW TO GRILL CROSTINI: Brush the slices with olive oil and set them directly on the grill grates with tongs, as indicated. Cover and toast the bread for approximately 3 minutes. Flip them carefully using tongs when the undersides are brown and have excellent grill marks, and continue on the other side. Serve on a large serving plate with chosen toppings.
- OTHER BAKING TEMPS AND TIMES: You might wish to bake crostini on an empty oven rack while roasting something else. Your crostini will be ready in 10 to 12 minutes if baked at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. They’ll take 8 to 10 minutes to bake at 400 degrees.