Filed Under: Bread | Italian

Restaurant Rosemary Bread

Recipe By Tessa Arias
April 1st, 2011

The excitement that fills me when I sit down at a restaurant and a basket of warm bread is placed in front of me is the same excitement that filled me on Christmas Eve as a child. 

Yield: 4 small loaves

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: Just like the bread at your favorite Italian restaurant, maybe better.
Texture: Crisp and salty on the outside, soft on the inside.
Ease: The dough is extremely easy to work with, it just takes a while to rise.
Appearance: Any bread sprinkled with salt and herbs makes me excited.
Pros: So freakin’ delicious. Plus the aroma of the bread baking is intoxicating.
Cons: None.
Would I make this again? Absolutely.

Copycat Restaurant Rosemary Bread “Where do you want to go for dinner?” Sometimes I base my response to that question entirely off how good or bad a restaurant’s bread and dessert items are. Is that bad?

Don’t answer, because I don’t care. I love my carbs and desserts. They make life wonderful. Glorious. Magnificent. The excitement that fills me when I sit down at a restaurant and a basket of warm bread is placed in front of me is the same excitement that filled me on Christmas Eve as a child. So, when I saw this recipe for restaurant rosemary bread in the latest issue of Food Network magazine, you can imagine the squirming, uncontrollable excitement that filled me. I literally ripped the recipe out, stood up, and began taking the necessary ingredients out of my pantry. I made this bread right there and then. Of course, it took a few hours waiting for rising and baking. But I had no regrets after tearing off a warm hunk of the bread, dipping it in herbed olive oil, and taking my first bite. Rustic, fruity, earthy, and just wonderful. The best kind of comfort food.

P.S. – You might also enjoy this post for Dark & Soft Restaurant Dinner Rolls.

How to make
Restaurant Rosemary Bread

Yield: 4 small loaves
The excitement that fills me when I sit down at a restaurant and a basket of warm bread is placed in front of me is the same excitement that filled me on Christmas Eve as a child. 


  • 1 1/4 ounce packet active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing and serving
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • assortment of fresh or dried herbs, pepper for oil dip


  1. Stir the yeast, sugar and 1/4 cup warm water in a large bowl (or in the bowl of a stand mixer). Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, the flour, 1 1/2 tablespoons rosemary, the fine salt and 3/4 cup warm water; stir with a wooden spoon (or with the dough hook if using a mixer) until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead, dusting lightly with flour if necessary, until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. (Or knead with the dough hook on medium-high speed, adding a little flour if the dough sticks to the bowl, about 8 minutes.)
  3. Brush a large bowl with olive oil. Add the dough, cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until more than doubled, about 2 hours.
  4. Brush 2 baking sheets with olive oil. Generously flour a work surface; turn the dough out onto the flour and divide into 4 pieces. Working with one piece at a time, sprinkle some flour on the dough, then fold the top and bottom portions into the middle. Fold in the sides to make a free-form square. Use a spatula to turn the dough over, then tuck the corners under to form a ball. Place seam-side down on a prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough, putting 2 balls on each baking sheet. Let stand, uncovered, until more than doubled, about 2 hours.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Bake the loaves 10 minutes; brush with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with the kosher salt and the remaining 1/2 tablespoon rosemary. Continue baking until golden brown, about 10 more minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool. Serve with olive oil seasoned with fresh or dried herbs, salt, and pepper.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from Food Network Magazine, April 2011
Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

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Recipe Rating

  1. #
    Kacey — April 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Yay! This looks delicious. I am totally with you on the carbs thing. I consider bread a meal in itself, and have been known (on a regular basis) to consume a whole loaf by myself. Fresh out of the oven and with some butter, how could anyone resist???

  2. #
    Anne — April 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    I can't wait to try this! Homemade bread is a serious favorite of mine. And my husband and I just love pretty much any bread with rosemary in it!

  3. #
    Kaitlin — April 1, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    Oh carbs… So much yum 😀 This looks so tasty!

    I hope you had a very happy birthday!

  4. #
    Café Sucré Farine — April 1, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    This looks fabulous! I love anything with rosemary and where I live it is one of the few herbs that grows year round. I'm like you I just might have to make this bread today!!

  5. #
    Maris — April 3, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    I also love me some carbs and these look incredible!

  6. #
    Mindy — April 3, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    I love rolls like these. Next time I have a few hours to spare, I'll be making these. 😉

  7. #
    thesweetslife — April 6, 2011 at 1:38 am

    oooh we make a rosemary bread that we LOVE! i've tried it with whole wheat flour and it's good but not the same…it's seriously our favorite bread ever 🙂 yours looks great!

  8. #
    Holly — May 16, 2011 at 2:03 am

    Made this tonight with your recipe and it is SO GOOD! Here's a pic:

    I used the super hyperactive yeast so I didn't wait as long for it rise as you said in your recipe, it was more like 2 hours rising total. Thank you for this genius!!!

    • #
      handleheat — May 16, 2011 at 4:09 pm

      Holly – love your picture! Thanks for commenting. I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe, there's not much that's better than freshly baked bread on the dinner table 🙂

  9. #
    ohshineon — June 22, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    I definitely want to make this. Like right now.

  10. #
    Diana — February 6, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    I’m on a bread making kick and loved this one! So easy to make and so delicious!

  11. #
    Amy — May 5, 2019 at 10:49 am

    As written, this recipe makes 4 small loaves. Can the dough be divided instead to make 8-12 small rolls? Obviously, rise time and bake time would need to be adjusted.

    I like this recipe in particular because it is non-dairy (I saw that you have a rosemary ricotta dinner roll recipe, as well).

  12. #
    shweta — December 2, 2019 at 2:21 pm

    Hi, Do we need to modify anything to make it into to a bread machine?

  13. #
    AliceNiki — February 28, 2021 at 4:18 am

    Hi Tessa. For this recipe can I use Instant yeast instead of active dry yeast? TQ

    • #
      Tessa — March 1, 2021 at 11:44 am

      As long as you are not using a bread machine, the two are usually interchangeable! Enjoy your bread!!

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