The 10 Best Things To Do With Stale Bread

So your bread is stale. So what? From stuffings to bread puddings to french toast, here are some delicious uses for your days-old bread.

  • Croissant French Toast. This is a special, decadent breakfast not meant for everyday (who has day-old croissants around everyday, anyway?), but on occasion, it’s heavenly. The croissants develop almost unbelievably crisp edges when they're dipped in egg and milk and then fried in butter. A little mascarpone on top is optional, but highly recommended.
  • Gluten Free Kabocha Squash Stuffing. The best stuffings are made with stale bread—but once it’s been soaked in stock and baked up with all sorts of other goodies (soft, sweet kabocha squash stars here), will you even recognize it? Why not go gluten free this year?
  • Romesco Sauce. This sauce is like our favorite black t-shirt: it goes with everything. And the very best part? You probably have all of the ingredients lurking in your pantry already. After minimal amounts of chopping and roasting, it all ends with a quick blitz from a food processor.
  • Rum Glazed Coconut Bread Pudding. This is a traditional bread pudding (if the traditional bread pudding was on a tropical vacation, that is). Coconut, raisins, brown sugar, and rum come together to create a truly sweet dessert. The recipe would probably work just well with a variety of other breads, so don’t be afraid to try it with whatever you may have on hand.
  • Ribollita. Ribollita, Italian for “reboiled,” is a classic Tuscan rustic vegetable soup thickened with stale bread. It’s cheap, with cannellini beans serving as the main protein source, and easy enough to whip up on a weeknight.
  • Wintry Corn Bread Pudding. This corn bread pudding ingeniously uses yeasted bread in place of cornbread, gleaning its classic flavor from cornmeal folded into the mix. It's a smart move: the sturdier bread cubes hold up well during cooking, which creates a nice texture and crumb in the final dish.
  • Aromatic Poached Salmon with Rye and Caper Breadcrumbs. As showy as whole-poached salmon can be, the breadcrumbs are the real star of the meal. They're intensely crunchy, punchy and flavorful against the lemony, gin-spiked salmon.
  • Roasted Garlic Soup with Olive Croutons. This soup is extremely flavorful and complex despite its relative simplicity. The crème fraîche adds a great creaminess and the poached egg contributes both heft and richness. If you don’t have olive bread, any day-old bread will do.
  • Crispy Salt and Pepper French Toast. This easy recipe might just make you turn your back on sweet french toast forever. It still pairs well with eggs and bacon, but (dare we say it?) this french toast would also make a mean Monte Cristo.
  • Savory Seedy Croutons. Coated in cumin, mustard, poppy and both black and white sesame seeds, these croutons are all about flavor and crunch. Serve them on a salad, bob them in soup, or just eat them as a snack.

So your bread is stale. So what? Stale bread has something going for it that no other ingredient does: when it turns, we jump for joy. From stuffings to bread puddings to french toasts, here are our top ten uses for days-old bread.

Click through the gallery above to see all of the recipes.

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