One of our favorite yeast-breads to make lately has been focaccia. It’s olive oil loving crisp outside and soft inside makes it perfect to accompany dinner, soups, stews or even sliced in half and used for sandwiches. Our focaccia bread recipe is very simple to make – no fancy equipment is needed at all.
What You Need to Know – Focaccia Bread Recipe
Focaccia is one of our favorites. It gets you to perfectly baked and fresh bread in no time and requires very little from you.
Use a Good Olive Oil
The secret to great focaccia bread is great tasting olive oil. Since there is quite a bit used, the bread really takes on the flavor. You don’t need to spend lots of money, just use an olive oil you love. We like something light and fruity.
Play with Flavor.
One of the best things about this focaccia recipe is that it’s completely versatile. In our case, we like to infuse olive oil with herbs and fresh garlic. We love a combination of thyme and rosemary, but you could use whatever herbs you love – fresh or dried.
If you would prefer you could leave the garlic and herbs out, it will still be completely delicious. Instead, you can just use plain olive oil. Or, add even more flavor to the dough before baking with sliced olives, halved cherry tomatoes or sun-dried tomatoes.
Another thing you can do is treat the baked focaccia like a pizza. Once baked, top the bread with your favorite cheese, pepperoni or tomatoes and bake until bubbly. Yum!
What to Do with Leftovers
Let’s say you have half of a baked loaf leftover, you can refrigerate or freeze it. First, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, then in foil. Keep in the refrigerator up to 2 days and in the freezer for about a month.
Day old bread can be toasted and used as croutons for a salad – You could always throw them on top of our Easy Caesar Salad Recipe. Another option is to cut into cubes and use in a bread pudding or strata.
Did you like our Easy Focaccia Bread Recipe with Herbs? If so, we bet you’ll love these:
- Cheesy Garlic Bread Recipe with Basil from Inspired Taste
- Baked Ziti Recipe with Spinach from Inspired Taste
- Easy Baked Spaghetti Recipe from Inspired Taste
Recipe updated, originally posted January 2013. Since posting this in 2013, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear. – Adam and Joanne
A note on pan size: In this recipe we call for a 9-inch by 13-inch rimmed baking sheet. If you do not have this, you can use a 9-inch by 13-inch rimmed baking dish with taller sides.
- 1/2 cup (118 ml) olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (substitute 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary (substitute 1 teaspoon dried rosemary)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup (237 ml) warm water
- 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 envelope)
- 1/4 teaspoon honey
- 2 1/2 (350 grams) cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- In a cold medium saucepan or skillet, combine olive oil, minced garlic, thyme, rosemary and the black pepper. Place pan over low heat then cook, stirring occasionally 5 to 10 minutes or until aromatic, but before the garlic browns. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the warm water, yeast and honey. Stir a few times then let sit for 5 minutes. Now, add 1 cup of the flour and a 1/4 cup of the infused garlic-olive oil mixture. Stir 3 to 4 times until the flour has moistened. Let sit for another 5 minutes.
- Stir in the remaining 1 1/2 cups of flour and the salt. Once the dough comes together, transfer to a floured board and knead the dough 10 to 15 times until smooth. Transfer to a large oiled bowl, cover with a warm, damp towel and let rise for 1 hour. (It’s best to let the dough rise in a warmer area of your kitchen).
- After 1 hour, heat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Then, use two tablespoons of the remaining garlic-olive oil mixture to oil a 9-inch by 13-inch rimmed baking sheet. (See note if you do not have this pan size).
- Transfer dough to the baking sheet then press it down into the pan. Use your fingers to dimple the dough then drizzle the top with the remaining 2 tablespoons of the garlic-olive oil mixture. Let the dough rise for 20 minutes until it puffs slightly then bake 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer focaccia bread to a cooling rack and cool.