This Olive Bread recipe will give you a delicious loaf of bread that’s easy to make and gives delicious results every time even if you’ve never baked bread before.
That’s right, this is the perfect recipe for first-time bread bakers and gives an old-style French Olive Bread that goes well with just about everything.
Serve it on the side of some soups or stews or have it on its own with some butter or olive oil. It also goes great alongside a cheese platter or charcuterie board.
Try this recipe once, and you’ll want to make it every day. Simple, easy, and gives perfect results every single time!
What is Olive Bread?
Olive Bread is a delicious loaf of bread that has a mix of whole or chopped olives laced in the dough and baked for the perfect crust.
It’s a classic bread that you can have with a variety of different dishes or just on its own because it tastes that good!
But this Olive Bread recipe that I’m sharing with you today, will take it to the next level. It features the classic artisan olive bread flavor but in a recipe that’s so easy to make that even first-time bread bakers that try it.
This delicious loaf of bread is eaten throughout the Mediterranean, especially in Italy and Greece since olives are a staple part of their diet.
The recipe I’m sharing with you today is a classic spin-off of the classic French bread that we all absolutely love.
Try it once, and you’ll fall in love with just how easy it is to make and how beautiful it tastes every time. This is seriously a foolproof recipe you need to try!
What Type of Flour Do I Need to Bake Olive Bread?
I’ve used all-purpose flour for this recipe, but you can also use bread flour to make this delicious bread.
All-purpose flour is readily available and is usually in the pantry already, and it will give you a softer texture, and that’s what I’ve gone with in this recipe.
On the other hand, using bread flour will give you a chewy texture, so it’s more a matter of preference than anything else. This is because this type of flour has a higher protein percentage with higher gluten.
What Kind of Olives Should I Use to Make this Bread?
You can use whichever kind of olives you like best, but make sure to buy pitted ones. Kalamata olives are commonly used when making Olive Bread, but you can use a mix of green olives and black olives, or either one.
Make sure to drain your olives completely before incorporating them into the recipe.
What You Need to Make Olive Bread at Home
This is an incredibly easy recipe for any first-time bread baker or well as an experienced home baker. Here are the seven ingredients you’ll need to make this bread at home:
All-purpose flour: All you need is some basic all-purpose flour for this recipe. You can alternatively also use bread flour, but it’s important to note that it will result in a chewier texture.
Salt: We’ll be using some salt to lightly add flavor to the bread so that the olives can shine.
Sugar: You’ll need some sugar while activating the yeast. Sugar makes the process faster as the yeast will have something to eat. It also helps to make the bread softer as some of the water will be absorbed by it and it slows down the formation of gluten strands.
Yeast: We’ll be using some active dry yeast in this recipe that we’ll activate with the help of some sugar and water.
Water: To activate the yeast, we’ll use some warm water with dissolved sugar.
Olives: This is definitely the star ingredient in this recipe. Go for whichever olives you love best. I’ve used black olives while making this bread.
Olive oil: We’ll add a teaspoon of olive oil to give our bread a subtle, rustic flavor and bring out the slight fruity taste in the bread to take it to the next level.
How to Make Olive Bread Step by Step
Making this delicious Olive Bread is super easy. Here’s what you need to do step by step:
Let’s first start by activating the yeast. Add the sugar and yeast in half-cup warm water, and stir to dissolve.
Next, in a bowl, sift or whisk the flour with salt.
Then add the yeast mixture and oil to the flour and knead until smooth. It will take approximately 10 minutes by hand. You can also use a stand mixer, but it turns out great when kneaded by hand as well.
Now dry the olives with a kitchen towel and add to the dough. Knead just to combine.
The dough might get sticky now, so add little flour and knead until the dough is no more sticky and smooth.
Cover the dough and let it proof for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Then punch the dough to take out all the air. Roll the dough to a log around 13” long.
Place on the baking sheet and let it rise again for 40 minutes. Make light cuts on the loaf, that is, score the loaf.
Preheat the oven to 400F or 200 C. Bake your loaf for 16 minutes, then let it cool on a wire rack before slicing.
Your delicious Olive Bread is ready to be served!
What Can I Serve With This Bread?
This Olive Bread is honestly absolutely delicious on its own. My family and I also love it with a little bit of butter or olive oil.
It also goes great with stews and soups, or you can also try it with some delicious salad for a light lunch. My Arabian Lamb Stew recipe is perfect if you want to soak your bread in some delicious stew for a comforting and hearty meal.
You can also serve your Olive Bread along with a cheese platter or charcuterie board.
How to Store the Bread
The best way to store this bread is by wrapping it with plastic wrap, placing it in a freezer-friendly bag, and freezing it for up to 6 months.
To thaw, lightly spray the bread with water and then heat it in the oven. If you want to thaw or warm the frozen bread in the microwave, you don’t have to spray it with water but microwave it for a few seconds.
French Olive Bread
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ tablespoon sugar
- 1 ⅛ teaspoon dry active yeast
- ½ cup warm water
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoon chopped black olives
- 1 teaspoon oil
- In half-cup warm water add the sugar and yeast, stir to dissolve.
- In a bowl, sift the flour with salt.
- Add the yeast mixture, and oil to the flour and knead until smooth for 10 minutes by hand With a stand mixer it will take lesser time.
- Place the olives on a kitchen towel and cover it with another layer of kitchen towel. Press down gently just to remove some of the moisture from the olives. Add it to the dough, and knead just to combine.
- The dough might get sticky now, so keep on dusting your hand with flour and knead until the dough is no more sticky and smooth.
- Cover the dough and let it rest for 1 hour and 15 minutes in a warm place.
- Punch the dough to take out all the air. Roll the dough into a 13” long log.
- Place the log on a baking sheet, cover it, and let it rise again for 40 minutes. Make a few cuts into the dough.
- Bake the bread in a pre-heated oven 200C/400F, bake the loaf for 16 minutes, and then let it cool on a cooling rack.
- Although this bread is made using either all-purpose flour or bread flour, you can replace ¼ cup of all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour.
- Make sure to remove as much moisture as you can from the olives.
- Do not use minced olives, or the dough will turn soggy.
- Use regular oil or olive oil in the recipe.
- This post was first published in 2016 and is now updated with more information.