Croutons add that crunch your salad may be lacking, but take a look at the nutrition info on some and you'll vow never to consume one ever again! This crouton recipe, however, contains only 36 calories, 1 SmartPoint and ZERO grams of fat, so you can indulge in the classic salad topper.
Recipe: Homemade Italian Ciabatta Croutons
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 14-16 minutes
Yield: 32 servings
Serving size: ¼ cup
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
½ tsp onion powder
1 lb Ciabatta bread, cut into ¾- inch cubes
⅛ cup reduced-fat Parmesan cheese
½ tsp salt
⅛ tsp black pepper
Preheat oven to 325ºF. Spray a small skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Over medium heat, sauté garlic for 1-2 minutes until golden brown. Stir in the Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Remove from heat and set aside.
Place bread cubes in a large bowl. Drizzle the olive oil 1 teaspoon at a time. Mix gently with a spatula between drizzles.
Sprinkle in garlic, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and cheese. Mix until evenly coated.
Lightly spray two baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer croutons to baking sheets. Lightly spray the tops with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bake for 12-16 minutes or until lightly browned.
Toss croutons over half way through. Optional: Broil for the last 2 minutes. Watch carefully so they don't burn.
Let cool. Store in airtight container. Yields 8 heaping cups.
Per Serving: (¼ cup)
Calories from fat: 2
Saturated Fat: 0g
3.1 The nutrition content of recipes on Popculture.com has been calculated by Registered Dietitian, Jessica Penner, of Smart Nutrition.