Homemade Salad Croutons

Olivia Miller | Thursday, March 23, 2023

Are you tired of buying pre-packaged salad croutons that come in plastic packaging and contribute to unnecessary waste? Look no further, because making your own homemade salad croutons is not only easy and delicious, but also a great way to reduce your environmental impact. In this article, we'll discuss why store-bought croutons are bad for the environment, the benefits of making your own, and provide a step-by-step guide on how to make them at home.

Why Store-Bought Croutons are Bad for the Environment

  1. Plastic Packaging: Most store-bought croutons come in plastic packaging, which is a major contributor to plastic pollution. According to National Geographic, only 9% of plastic is recycled, and the rest ends up in landfills or the environment, taking hundreds of years to decompose.

  2. Transportation Emissions: Store-bought croutons are often shipped long distances, resulting in carbon emissions from transportation. These emissions contribute to climate change and air pollution.

  3. Single-Use Mentality: By purchasing pre-packaged croutons, we are perpetuating a single-use mentality, where items are used once and then thrown away. This mindset is harmful to the environment and contributes to the depletion of natural resources.

Why Making Your Own is Better for the Environment

  1. Reduces Plastic Waste: By making your own croutons, you can eliminate the need for plastic packaging. Instead, you can store them in reusable containers or jars, reducing your plastic waste.

  2. Supports Local and Sustainable Ingredients: When making your own croutons, you have control over the ingredients you use. You can choose to use locally sourced and sustainable ingredients, reducing the carbon footprint of your food.

  3. Promotes a Zero-Waste Lifestyle: Making your own croutons is a great way to reduce your overall waste and promote a zero-waste lifestyle. By using up stale bread and other ingredients, you are preventing them from ending up in landfills.


What You'll Need

  • Stale bread (preferably whole grain)
  • Olive oil or melted butter
  • Seasonings of your choice (garlic powder, Italian seasoning, etc.)
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Mixing bowl
  • Knife
  • Cutting board


  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).

  2. Cut the stale bread into small cubes, about 1 inch in size. You can use any type of bread, but whole grain bread will provide more nutrients and a heartier texture.

  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the bread cubes with a drizzle of olive oil or melted butter. Use enough oil or butter to lightly coat the bread cubes.

  4. Add your desired seasonings to the bowl and mix well. You can use garlic powder, Italian seasoning, or any other herbs and spices you prefer.

  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the seasoned bread cubes in a single layer.

  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the croutons are golden brown and crispy.

  7. Let the croutons cool before storing them in an airtight container or jar.

  8. Enjoy your homemade croutons on top of salads, soups, or as a tasty snack!

Tips for Sustainability

  • Use up stale bread that would otherwise go to waste.
  • Use locally sourced and organic ingredients when possible.
  • Reuse a container or jar to store your croutons.
  • Compost any leftover bread scraps or use them in other recipes.


Making your own homemade salad croutons is a simple and delicious way to reduce your environmental impact. By eliminating plastic packaging, supporting sustainable ingredients, and promoting a zero-waste lifestyle, you can make a positive impact on the planet. So next time you're craving croutons, skip the store-bought version and try making your own. Your taste buds and the environment will thank you.

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