You can recreate the yummy bread dipping seasonings / spices used by restaurants just by mincing some fresh herbs. Make sure to use the best tasting extra virgin olive oil you can find.
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It’s great when you go to a nice restaurant and you first order a beverage…then, they bring out some freshly made bread and a plate of olive oil with fine minced herbs. That delicious burst of flavor you get from the oil is so nice with the bread.
One of my favorite places to get seasoned olive oil and fresh bread is Bonefish Grill. If you have ever been to a Bonefish, I think you know what I mean. Sometimes you even have to wait a few minutes for the bread to come out of the oven. It’s that fresh.
Well, it is pretty easy to create the same flavors at home and fresh herbs and good extra virgin olive oil are what you’ll need.
Ingredients in this bread dipping seasonings are: fresh basil, Italian, (flat leafed), parsley, oregano, thyme, garlic cloves, red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and pepper. And you’ll want to use a great tasting extra virgin olive oil.
Choosing a good olive oil
With so many brands to choose from, how do you know what to buy. That question has always puzzled me. I use a lot of olive oil in my cooking so I buy oil in bulk. Meaning 2 liters at a time.
A good all-purpose olive oil that I buy is Costco’s Kirkland brand extra virgin olive oil. It is made in Italy with Italian olives. It’s also first cold pressed meaning you are getting the most flavor from the olives.
This is a nice everyday oil, but not the best choice for dipping. It lacks the flavors found in better olive oils. And I’m not going to tell you what to buy. I’ll give you some suggestions of olive oils to try, based on a lot of articles I’ve read discussing this.
In the end it will take some experimenting to find the oil that you like best. After tasting different brands of oil, you’ll start to see the differences in flavors. Olive oil can be grassy, peppery, pungent, nutty, fiery, or mild.
Some are made just for cooking. Some are meant to be drizzled over your food for extra flavor. And some, just perfect for seasoned bread dipping.
Storing olive oil
Olive oil is generally sold in dark bottles or tins. That’s because sunlight can oxidize and ruin the oil. Store it in a dark, cool place so it keeps well.
Also, unlike a good aged wine, olive oil is best when young and totally consumed before it is 18 months old. Some brands of oil will give you the harvest date or they will have the “best by” date on the bottle.
Look for olive oils that are certified by either the NAOOA, the North American Olive Oil Association, or the European, IOC, International Olive Council. This way you can be sure that you are buying olive oil and not a blend of cheaper ingredients.
Recommendations to try
With so many to choose from, here are those mentioned pretty consistently in articles related to great tasting olive oils. The first three are especially regarded as good oils for dipping.
Ellora Farms Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($1.59/fl. oz.)
La Tourangelle Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($0.42/ fl. oz.)
California Olive Ranch Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($0.65/ fl. oz.)
Olio Verde Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($2.25/ fl. oz.)
Tenuta di Capezzana Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($3.31/ fl. oz.)
Cobram Estate Extra Virgin Olive Oil (0.75/ fl. oz.)
Colavita Premium Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($0.76/ fl. oz.)
Monini Premium Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($0.94/ fl. oz.)
Try some of these for bread dipping oils. Ask at your local grocery, Target, or Walmart too, as some may be readily available.
You can recreate the taste of this and bake your own French bread using my simple recipe.
The seasoning recipe makes about 1/4 cup of the mixture that I store in a small jar in the refrigerator. It only takes a small amount in the olive oil to impart the great flavor that works so well with fresh bread.
The quantities in the recipe are approximations and can be varied. They give you the basics of most bread dipping seasonings that restaurants use. One note is that some recipes call for fresh rosemary. You can add a small amount if you would like. I personally feel that rosemary is too strong a flavor for this.
Another thing you might do it sprinkle a little grated parmesan cheese into the oil for a bit more Italian like flavoring.
Mix up some herbs in olive oil and dunk some good bread…it’ll make any meal seem special.
Bread Dipping Seasonings
- 1 tbsp minced fresh basil
- 1 tbsp minced fresh parsley
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp minced fresh oregano
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Place all ingredients except the olive oil into a small food processor and puree until finely chopped, scraping down the sides when necessary. (Or, use a really sharp knife and chop until very finely minced).
- Add the small amount of olive oil and pulse until incorporated.
- Mix 1 teaspoon of spices to 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Store unused portions in the refrigerator.
- Serve with bread of choice.
- Double or triple the recipe as it stores very well refrigerated.
- Sprinkle some grated parmesan cheese onto the oil for added flavor and texture.
This recipe post was originally dated April 13, 2015 and updated on August 9, 2021.
Here are some more great recipes to try:
- Classic Deviled Eggs
- Seafood Comeback Sauce
- Bacon Wrapped Chicken Bites
- Stuffed Cucumber Bites
- Cheesy Italian Dunkers