Crostini are some of the best appetizers for entertaining. Who can say no to crusty bread with a heap of delicious toppings? These little toasts are easy to make yet full of flavor.
Whenever I need a quick appetizer for a crowd, I often turn to crostini. Toasting bread and piling on cheese, spreads and other toppings is easy and always has delicious results.
We've pulled together the top crostini recipes for entertaining, plus a few tips on how to make them.
What Is Crostini?
Crostini is the name for little slices of toasted bread drizzled with olive oil and then grilled or baked. In Italian, crostini means "little toasts."
Think bruschetta, but with other flavors and toppings than just tomato and basil.
Crostini is typically made from slices of baguettes or another similar crusty bread. You can eat crostini with dips, soups and even make simple appetizers with them!
If you're feeling really adventurous, make a fresh homemade baguette and turn it into crostini!
Best Bread for Crostini
You don't need much to make crostini, but you do need to start with bread!
The best bread for crostini is a baguette. You can purchase a fresh baguette from your grocery store bakery or local bakery.
A smart way to save a bit of money is to look in the discounted baked goods section. Often, stale or day-old baguettes are placed there since they're still ok to use in certain recipes! You can make delicious crostini from stale bread, just make sure there's no mold.
You can also ask the bakery to slice the baguette for you, but if you do this, you should make the crostini within a day as it goes stale fast.
Toppings for Crostini
If you want to make up your own crostini recipes with whatever you have on hand, go for it!
Here are some things to consider putting on them.
- Cheese: goat cheese, feta cheese, gournay cheese, cheese spreads, feta spread, cream cheese
- Spreads: jam, preserves, hummus, basil pesto, flavored olive oils, guacamole
- Fresh herbs: basil, mint, thyme, sage, rosemary
- Fruit: berries, peaches, apples, pears
- Veggies: squash, zucchini, roasted tomatoes, roasted peppers
- Meats: salami, prosciutto, coppa, grilled chicken
- Drizzles: honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, preserves
How to Make Crostini
You'll want to start with little toasts like sliced baguette, which you brush with olive oil. I recommend only using a high-quality extra virgin olive oil. The taste is just so much better!
Follow these simple steps to make easy crostini toasts:
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF. You can also use a toaster oven for this recipe if you don't need to make a lot.
- While it's preheating, slice a baguette into ¼ inch thick pieces with a serrated knife. Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Then, use a basting brush to generously spread olive oil onto each of the baguette slices.
- Place into the oven and toast for 5-7 minutes, or until golden brown. There's no need to flip the crostini while it's in the oven! The slices should bake evenly on both sides.
- Place them on a wire backing rack to cool slightly, then top with your favorite toppings.