An olive oil bread dip brimming with flavor from multiple herbs and roasted garlic; you won’t be able to stop dipping each and every last bit of crust bread in it! This elegant appetizer is not only delicious, it’s super easy to make, too!
You know when you sit down at a nice Italian restaurant and a big basket of fresh homemade bread greets you with its aroma and warm touch (It’s gotta be warm; none of this cold bread bologna)?
A lot of times there’s high-quality butter to go along with it – and odn’t get me wrong, I’m a sucker for high-quality butter – but even better? When there’s olive oil to dip the bread in.
And I’m not talking about just any olive oil. I’m talking high-quality, straight-from-the-source olive oil. Not only that though (!), olive oil that’s been marinating with herbs – fresh or dried – and of course, garlic (!!!).
I hear people talk all the time about the bread dipping oil at restaurants like Carrabba, California Pizza Kitchen, Bertucci, Macaroni Grill… and I’ve got to say, respectfully, that this one right here, this one takes the cake.
Not only can you have it whenever the heck you want, but it’s also easy to make, and it’s got ALL the flavor. Not just a couple of dried herbs here and there. It’s got ’em all, and lots of ’em, and even better? You have the flexibility to make it just as damn good as you want.
Olive Oil Dip Deets
So, how do you make olive oil dip for bread? Yeah, I’ve said there’s flavor and herbs and yada yada, but what’s that all really mean?
Let’s get the down low, down to the deets, shall we?
(I admit, I might be too old to say stuff like this, but I’m just old enough to know how to make a really mean bread dipping oil, so let’s let it slide?)
Here’s the beauty of this dip: you can use the herbs you have!
Whether they’re dried or fresh herbs, they are going to bring their A-game flavor.
The star herb players this time around:
The main thing you need to know when using dry vs fresh herbs is that the amounts will differ.
When using dried herbs instead of fresh, you need to use about half the amount that you would for fresh because dried herbs are much more potent – you know, concentrated flavor.
And vice-versa for fresh vs dry: use more fresh herbs than the dried amount listed.
Usually, the guideline is about half or double the amount. I say do what your tastebuds desire. 😉
So there’s the herbs. Lovely, lovely, herbs.
And then…there’s ROASTED GARLIC.
If there’s one thing I love more than garlic, it’s roasted garlic.
The magic happens when garlic roasts up. The flavor transforms into a more mellow, buttery, velvety, caramelized flavor, making it a wonderful addition to this bread dip.
So you’ve got the herbs, the roasted garlic, and now you just need one more key ingredient: high-quality olive oil.
Really, if you want this to be the best darn bread dip that you’ve ever had, use the good stuff.
It will bring flavor like you’ve never had (ok, or maybe you have and that is SO good and then you KNOW you gotta use the best stuff you can find). It’s 100% worth it in recipes like this, where the olive oil flavor is front and center.
Do I use the best of the best in everyday cooking, when I’m not really going to taste the olive oil? No, because quite frankly, I have a budget. But here? Here I’m using the best stuff I have for that full, robust, fresh olive oil flavor.
P.S. You can now buy my favorite high-quality EVOO online and get 15% using the code FITK15 (affiliate code) – Oleavia is harvested by hand and minimally processed for the freshest flavor.
Other factors? Well, there’s a little acid in the dip because it adds a complexity to the flavors and balances it out. You need the acid.
I use a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for the fresh brightness it adds to the dip. If you don’t have lemons on hand, or would prefer, a perfect substitute for lemon juice in this recipe is balsamic vinegar. What’s more Italian dip feeling than olive oil and balsamic? Go ahead and make the swap if needed.
But wait: the bread!
Ok, so what kind of bread is THE BEST kind of bread for dipping?
Is it wrong to say that all bread is good bread and as long as there is BREAD you’re on the right track?
Ok, so my bread loving tendencies aside, your best bet with this olive oil dip is to have a loaf of crusty bread. One that’s hearty and full of texture and nooks and crannies to sop up ALL of the goodness.
My go-to for this type of thing is usually warm baguette slices or a big slice of something like sourdough, with flavor and texture and that chewy crust.
Focaccia would also be an excellent choice, or a slice of Italian bread, or ciabatta…
Point being: as long as it’s hearty, textured, and warm, you can’t go wrong.
Now go ahead, pour yourself a glass of wine, grab your loaf of bread, and get to dipping away in this easy, simple garlic olive oil dip that cannot be beat!
Need More Easy Appetizer Dip Inspiration? Check these out!
- Whipped Feta Dip
- Whipped Ricotta with Herbs and Honey
- Creamy Artichoke Leek and Kale Dip
- Sun-Dried Tomato and Pesto Dip
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating and review in the form below. I appreciate your feedback, and it helps others, too!
Herby Roasted Garlic Olive Oil Dip
- 1 whole garlic bulb
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried parsley
- 1/2 cup high-quality olive oil + drizzle for garlic
- 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes or to taste
- 1/4 tsp fine sea salt or to taste
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper or to taste
- Half of a lemon juiced (~1/2 - 1 TBSP)
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Remove excess paper from the exterior of the garlic bulb, and cut the top of the bulb off, exposing the top of the cloves inside. Place in the center of a piece of foil that's large enough to cover the bulb. Drizzle with olive oil and add a pinch of salt. Wrap foil around the bulb, and roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes until tender and golden brown. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, combine dried herbs, olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper in a small dish. Add the squeeze of lemon. Once garlic has cooled enough to handle, flip upside down and squeeze out the garlic bulbs. Combine with the rest of the ingredients. Let sit for approximately 30 minutes to allow the flavor to develop (the longer the better!).
- Serve with warm crusty bread and enjoy!