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Garlic Knots

Pillowy soft and generously tossed in oh-so-good garlic butter, this amazing homemade garlic knots recipe is so much better than anything you’ll find in the freezer section. Whether you like to dip them or nibble on them as they are, make extra because these easy garlic knots will disappear quickly!

Garlic knots in a round pan with marinara in the middle

Homemade Garlic Knots from Scratch

I love making bread from scratch. I love that it gives me an opportunity to work with my hands to create something that will taste delicious while making my whole house smell amazing. It’s an indulgence in both time and energy and one of the many reasons I resist a low carb lifestyle.

Today we are making garlic knots and we are making them from scratch. No store bought dough or pizza dough knots here! These garlic knots are made 100% from scratch. That said, make sure you read the full recipe in advance and plan to allow time for the dough to rise. Making homemade dough from scratch is not a quick process, but it is a worthwhile one.

What You’ll Need

The ingredients list for this homemade garlic knots recipe is pretty straightforward. In fact, if you keep a well stocked pantry you probably have most of these items on hand.

Ingredients for garlic knots in small bowls.

For the garlic knots dough:

  • Bread Flour – Compared to all purpose (AP) flour, bread flour contains more protein which creates more gluten, creating a lighter, chewier, softer bread.
  • Instant yeast aka bread machine yeast – As written, this recipe does not call for activating the yeast in warm water prior to mixing with the flour, so you need instant yeast.
  • Sugar – White granulated sugar feeds the yeast and helps it do its job.
  • Salt – A little goes a long way for helping this bread dough develop its flavor.
  • Butter – Mostly for flavor, but it also helps with the texture of the dough.
  • Warm water – Yeast needs a warm environment to work, you’ll need water that feels warm but not hot to touch.
  • Oil – Just a drizzle to coat the dough and keep it from sticking while rising. You can use a neutral cooking oil or olive oil.

For the garlic butter and garnish:

  • Butter – Yes, more butter! This time it’s all for flavor.
  • Garlic – Fresh garlic cloves, grated with a microplane.
  • Parsley – Adds a pop of color and a hint of flavor.
  • Parmesan cheese – A block of parmesan grated with a microplane is going to give the best results, as the super thin shreds will melt and stick to the hot knots. If you can only buy pre-shredded, look for finely grated Parmesan.

For the marinara dipping sauce:

  • Crushed tomatoes – You’ll need one 14.5 ounce can.
  • Garlic – Marinara isn’t marinara without a hint (or more) of garlic.
  • Dried oregano – You can also use your favorite Italian seasoning or Italian herb blend.
  • White wine vinegar – A tangy sour punch adds a bright flavor to the sauce.
  • Sugar – Granulated white sugar will offset some of the acidity in the tomatoes.

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  • Microplane – For grating the parmesan and the garlic.
  • Large mixing bowl – A large one, big enough for the dough to double in size.
  • Knife or kitchen shears – To cut the dough into strips.
  • Rimmed baking sheet – For baking the garlic knots.
  • Parchment paper – To line the baking sheet.
  • Stand mixer (optional) – To knead the dough.
  • Bread Machine (optional) – For a hands free way to make the dough and allow it to rise. See notes below.

How To Make Homemade Garlic Knots

As with any scratch-made bread, there is rising time involved in this garlic knots recipe. Plan ahead to give the dough plenty of time to do it’s thing in a warm, draft-free spot. These instructions cover how to make garlic knots by hand. To adapt for a bread machine, keep reading.

  • Make the dough. Combine the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the melted butter and water then use a spoon to combine together into a rough dough. 
  • Knead. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Or, use a stand mixer and dough hook and work the dough on the lowest setting for 5 minutes.
  • Roll the dough into a ball and place into a large bowl. Drizzle the dough with oil and turn over to coat the entire surface. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and let the dough rise in a warm place until it’s doubled in size (the first rise).
  • Portion the dough. Make an 18-inch long rectangle with the dough on a lightly floured surface, then use a sharp knife to cut it into 18 strips. Roll each strip into a long sausage
  • Shape the garlic knots shape garlic knots by tying into a knot and tucking the ends underneath. Place the knots on a prepared baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Continue shaping garlic knots from the remaining dough.
  • Rest the dough. Let the knots rest for 30 minutes (the second rise). Meanwhile, preheat oven.  
  • Make the garlic butter. Melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the grated garlic. Cook for a minute until the garlic is aromatic.
  • Bake the knots. Generously brush the knots with the garlic butter mixture and then bake the knots in a preheated 350ºF oven.
  • Make the dipping sauce. Add the crushed tomatoes, garlic, oregano, white wine vinegar, and sugar into a saucepan. Simmer.
  • Brush the baked knots. When the knots are golden brown, brush them with the remaining garlic butter and sprinkle the Parmesan, chopped parsley, and salt over the tops. 
  • Serve with the marinara sauce or your favorite dipping sauce.

Making Garlic Knot Dough in a Breadmaker

While the above steps of this recipe cover how to make garlic knots by hand, this is a recipe that can easily be adapted for the breadmaker. To make the dough in your breadmaker follow the manufacturer’s instructions for layering the ingredients and run it on a manual setting.

Once the dough has been mixed, kneeded, and gone through the first rise, remove it from the bread machine. Shape the dough into an 18″ rectangle and pick up with the recipe instructions from this point to shape the knots by hand and bake them according the the instructions in the recipe.

Baked garlic knots on a wooden surface with marinara sauce.

Tips for Success

  • This garlic knots recipe will also work with all-purpose flour, but you’ll have much softer rolls if you use bread flour (strong white flour.)
  • If you don’t have a microplane to grate your garlic, finely mince the garlic then use the flat side of the knife to press it into a paste. This will help to draw out the garlic flavor without leaving large chunks of garlic that can easily burn in the oven.
  • Don’t skip oiling the dough. This step ensures that the surface stays moist and don’t form a dry skin, which can affect the texture of the dough.
  • Plastic wrap is NOT necessary for making homemade dough. If you live in a very arid environment and are afraid that the dough might dry out even with the oiled surface, allow it to rise in your oven (turned off) with a pan of water on a lower rack.

Serving Suggestions

Garlic knots and pizza night go hand-in-hand, but garlic knots are also fabulous with any pasta dish, especially Homemade Spaghetti. These scratch-made rolls can also be served with a hot bowl of soup or stew, and they can easily take the place of garlic bread or any dinner roll.

They taste best when served warm. A few minutes in a 350ºF oven is all they need or pop them in your air fryer if it’s convenient.

Freshly baked garlic knots on a dark serving platter with marinara sauce.

How To Store and Reheat Garlic Knots

LIke most homemade breads, garlic knots are best eaten fresh on the day they’re baked. However, they’ll keep in the fridge for up to 2 days if stored in an airtight container.

You can also freeze garlic knots. Place them in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to a month. Let them thaw on the countertop or in the oven.

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Garlic knots in a round pan with marinara in the middle

Garlic Knots

Yield: 18 knots
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Rising Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 40 minutes

Soft, chewy homemade garlic knots tossed in a buttery garlic sauce. Serve with homemade marinara as a side dish or an app!

Ingredients

For the Bread

  • 3 cups white bread flour (12 3/4 ounces)
  • 1 packet dried yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons or 1/4 ounce)
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted (4 tablespoons or 2 ounces)
  • 1 cup warm water (8 ounces)
  • Drizzle of olive oil, for oiling the dough

For the Garlic Butter

  • 1/2 cup butter (8 tablespoons or 4 ounces)
  • 4 garlic cloves, grated or minced to a paste (4 teaspoons)

For the Topping

  • Small bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan, finely grated (1 ounce)
  • Salt, to taste

For the Marinara

  • 1 - 14.5 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (1 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano or Italian seasoning blend
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons white sugar

Instructions

  1. Add the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt to a large mixing bowl. Mix together with a spoon then pour in the melted butter and water. Mix together into a rough dough then (if kneading by hand) turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Alternatively, leave the dough in the bowl and add to a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix on the lowest speed for 5 minutes.
  2. When the dough is ready it should be soft and pliable. Shape into a ball then place inside a large bowl. Drizzle with oil then turn the dough over to coat completely. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and place in a warm spot, allow to rise until doubled in size. This should take between 1.5-2 hours.
  3. Line two baking trays with baking parchment.
  4. When the dough has doubled in size, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Use your hands to form it into a rectangle of approximately 18 inches long. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 18 strips.
  5. Take a strip in your hands and roll it into a log shape about 5 inches long. Tie it in a knot then tuck the ends underneath. Place the shaped knot onto one of the prepared baking trays. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
  6. Place the prepared knots in a warm spot and allow rest for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  7. Meanwhile make the garlic butter. Melt the butter in a small saucepan until bubbling. Remove from heat and swirl in the grated garlic. Set aside.
  8. After 30 minutes, brush the garlic knots with the garlic butter (you will use about half) then bake in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the knots turn golden brown.
  9. While the garlic knots are baking prepare the marinara. Combine crushed tomatoes, minced garlic, oregano, white wine vinegar, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer, then cover and let it cook over a low flame while the bread bakes.
  10. Once the garlic knots are ready, brush them with the remaining butter and sprinkle with Parmesan, chopped parsley, and salt. Serve immediately alongside the marinara.
    Nutrition Information:
    Yield: 18 Serving Size: 1
    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 240Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 357mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 5g

    Nutrition information is an estimate automatically calculated by Nutritionix. It is for general information purposes only. For the most accurate information, calculate using your select brands and exact measurements in your recipe

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