Olive Garden Breadsticks

Just like the originals, these copycat Olive Garden breadsticks are light and airy on the inside, and flavored with butter and garlic salt on the outside. You can never eat just one!

These breadsticks pair perfectly with any soup, salad, or pasta. But they’re especially delicious with our copycat recipe for Zuppa Toscana—another Olive Garden favorite!

A bundle of breadsticks wrapped in a napkin

copycat Olive Garden breadsticks

Who else is excited about soup season? Soup is one of my favorite foods, and I like to eat soup at least once a week.

I like pretty much every variety, from broccoli cheese soup to tomato basil soup. I love that there are so many different flavor combinations, and it’s always warm and comforting.

Of course, if you’re making soup for dinner, you need some fabulous bread to go with it, and that’s where these copycat Olive Garden breadsticks come in! They taste just like the breadsticks from Olive Garden, but even better, because you can make them at home! Best of all, they’re easy to make, and way cheaper than store-bought.

Step by step pictures of how to make Olive Garden breadsticks

How to Make Olive Garden Breadsticks

DOUGH. You’ll start by mixing up a simple breadstick dough. If you have a stand mixer, it makes the kneading part a little easier, but you can definitely mix the dough up by hand, too! Once it’s mixed, let it rise about one hour, or until it has doubled in size.

(Note: The dough should be smooth and elastic after kneading is done. I have found this takes anywhere from 7-10 minutes. Use medium speed if you are using a dough hook with an electric mixer.)

DIVIDE. Next, divide the dough into twelve equal sized pieces that are about two ounces each. If you’re OCD like me, you can use a kitchen scale. I actually ended up with thirteen breadsticks, based on that two ounce weight. The more the merrier! 🙂

ROLL. Roll each piece of dough out into a long rope (about nine inches long) and place 2 inches apart on a lined baking sheet. They totally don’t have to be perfect. Even if they’re a little wonky, they’ll still turn out delicious.

RISE. Cover the breadsticks and let them rise for about one hour. During the last ten minutes of rise time, preheat the oven to 425.

BAKE. Bake the breadsticks 12-14 minutes, or until golden brown, then brush with melted butter and sprinkle with garlic salt. If you don’t have garlic salt, you could mix some garlic powder and regular table salt together, but I love how much flavor the garlic salt adds. Yum!

SERVE. Serve them hot with your favorite pasta or soup. Some of our favorites include:

Homemade breadsticks baked on a sheet pan

Variations and Storage

Variations: We love the garlic salt taste like Olive Garden has, but you easily change up the toppings for a new flavor.

  • Coat the outside with butter and powdered Parmesan cheese
  • Before baking, sprinkle your favorite cheese on top
  • Brush with butter and sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top

Another way to change up these breadsticks is to serve them alongside different dipping dishes. You can use sweet or savory sauces depending on the flavor of topping you decided to add on the breadstick itself. 

Storage: Fresh breadsticks are definitely best when eaten the same day, but they still make delicious leftovers, Just store at room temperature in a bag or container.

Freezer: You can either freeze these breadsticks in dough form to be baked later or after they have been baked. 

  • Dough: Shape the dough into the breadsticks but do not allow them to rise a second time. Instead, place them on a baking sheet and into the freezer. Once solid transfer them to a freezer safe storage container, label and freeze for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to use them you’ll need to thaw them completely before baking. Spread them out on a baking sheet, spray one side of a large piece of plastic wrap with cooking oil and cover the breadsticks, oil side down. Once the dough has thawed, remove the plastic and bake according to recipe directions. 
  • Baked: Allow the breadsticks to cool completely. Place the breadsticks into a freezer safe container and freeze for 1-2 months. Reheat them in the microwave or in an oven.

Close up of olive garden breadsticks on a plate

For more bread recipes, check out:


Olive Garden Breadstick Recipe

4.92 from 24 votes
Just like the originals, these copycat Olive Garden breadsticks are light and airy on the inside, and flavored with butter and garlic salt on the outside. You can never eat just one!
Course Bread
Cuisine American, Italian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Let Rise 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 27 minutes
Servings 12 breadsticks
Calories 183 kcal
Author Lil' Luna



  • 1 cup and 2 Tbsp warm water
  • 1 1/4 tsp yeast
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 3-3 1/4 cups flour


  • 2 tbsp butter melted
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt


  • In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Let sit 5-10 minutes, or until foamy. Add the salt, oil, and two cups of flour, and mix until combined. Add additional flour, ¼ cup at a time, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and is soft and only slightly sticky to the touch.
  • Knead the dough until smooth, sprinkling with flour as needed to make the dough manageable. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and let rise one hour, or until doubled.
  • After the dough has rise, punch it down gently and divide it into 12 equal sized balls. Roll each ball out into a nine inch rope, and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone liner. Repeat with remaining dough, using two baking sheets. Cover and let rise one hour.
  • During the last ten minutes of rise time, preheat the oven to 425. Bake 12-14 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with melted butter, then sprinkle with garlic salt. Serve warm.


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About the Author

Alicia Skousen

Hi! I’m Alicia and I blog at The Baker Upstairs. I am in love with all things food! I love to bake bread, cupcakes, cookies… you name it! When I’m not baking, I am running after my two adorable little girls, working as an RN, knitting, reading, and trying to squeeze in time with my husband every day.

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  1. wow how do you find time for YOURSELF? I could never do all that in one day, I might do it in a week, ty for your recipes going to try these bread sticks they look so yummy

  2. Have you ever frozen tHem? For examPLe, cook bit remove, cool and Then freeze, thawing anD browning when ready to use?

  3. 5 stars
    SO glad you shared this recipe! These are so addicting!! We usually have some kind of bread with our meals & everyone loves these!

  4. So I tried out youR recipe 2 times today and They didn’t turn out good at all. I followed the recipe exactly, even made sure the water was at 110 degrees. It seemed that using the 1 cup + 2 tbs warM water Was not enouGh. The ending dough wasn’t soft and slightly sticky to the touch. Instead, it was lumpy and kind oF dry even after using only 3 cups oF flour. Needless to say, the Breadsticks came out very doughy on the insidE, not at all liGht and soft. So, can you tell me whatI’m doing wrong? Should I add more water? And iF yes, how much? Also, you said you used the dry active yeast, and then later said you used the instant yeAst with regular flour. Can you tell me which I should use? I used the active dry kind foR my 2 tries. Would love to get this recipe righT, would really appreciate your help. I Don’t know how all your other reviewers are having success with your recipe and I ‘m not, especia since I’m following it to the t, and I mean the t. SoRry For all the caps, couldn’t turn it off somehow

  5. 5 stars

    1. This recipe is from a contributor, but I would think canola oil or olive oil. Really, you can use different oils. And, yes that yeast should be ok 🙂

      1. 5 stars
        Thank you krystyn! Made this last night and my husband loved it so much he almost finished it haha! The breadsticks were so soft. Definitely a keeper recipe.

      2. Making these for tonight’s dinner. What kind of oil did you use? Is vegetable oil okay? Also, can I brush these will melted butter before I put them in the oven? Thanks for sharing this recipe! I’m very excited to try it!

  6. 5 stars
    I have tried so many copycat recipes for olive garden breadsticks and this is the easiest and most like the originals! They’re SO good and soft.

  7. Hi im new to bread and find all the waiting/rising/kneading thing kind of confusing. Your video seems to show yeast, sugar, water and then goes straight into adding oIl, flower etc. but the directions say to pause for 5-10 minutes. Which version is right?

  8. Hi, I’m really looking forward to try these. I was just wondering how long you think it will take the dough that is frozen in breadstick form to unthaw?

    1. Generally it takes about 2-3 hours for frozen bread dough to thaw when left out on the counter at room temperature to thaw. You can speed up the process by using the microwave if you would like: Spray a microwave-safe plate with nonstick cooking spray and place the dough directly on the plate. Microwave on the defrost setting, uncovered for three to five minutes. I hope this helps!

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