When you ordered breadsticks with your meal at Olive Garden, they were cooked to perfection. However, after a few days in the refrigerator, your breadsticks are as hard as drumsticks. Is there any way to save them?
Continue reading to learn more about a few ways you can reheat your Olive Garden breadsticks. Even if you think that they are beyond saving, try some of the following measures first.
Wrap the Breadsticks in Foil and Heat Them in an Oven
Take your breadsticks and wrap them in tin foil. You can also use the to-go bag that the restaurant gave you (if you kept it). This will keep them from drying out when you place them in the oven. You can either use a toaster oven or a conventical oven. From here, you should:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place the breadsticks on a cookie sheet.
- Bake them for about five minutes (or when they are soft to the touch).
(Source: Carlsbad Cravings)
Note: Avoid putting the breadsticks in the oven while it is pre-heating; this will affect how long and how well the breadsticks reheat.
Wrap the Breadsticks in a Wet Paper Towel and Microwave
Do not reheat your breadsticks in the bag that they came in. The bag has a foil lining, and by doing this, you risk damaging your microwave. Also, do not use tin foil, as this could have a similar outcome.
Instead, follow these steps:
- Dampen a power towel.
- Wrap the damp paper towel around the breadsticks to lock in moisture.
- Cover the breadsticks with a microwave splatter cover or suitable alternative.
- Set your microwave’s power to medium.
- Heat the breadsticks in the microwave for 45 to 60 seconds.
Try opening the microwave every 15 seconds to check on your breadsticks’ progress. This will prevent you from keeping them in there for too long, as doing so could leave them very hard or crunchier than you’d like.
Steam the Breadsticks
If you do not have a microwave, conventional oven, or toaster oven, you can try steaming the breadsticks back to their desired temperature. For this, you will need:
- A pot
- A stovetop
- A steamer basket
- Paper towels
- The breadsticks
First, fill up the pot with water and place it over a heat source. Insert the steamer basket so that it sits over the boiling water. Now, wrap the paper towels around the breadsticks. Once the water is boiling, place the breadsticks in the steamer basket; you should have no more than four breadsticks in the basket at a time. Finally, cover the pot with a lid.
You should monitor your breadsticks as they heat up. You don’t want your breadsticks to be too soggy, yet you don’t want them to harden, either. Generally, for four breadsticks, they can be steamed for approximately eight minutes.
Alternative Uses for Your Olive Garden Breadsticks
You might have already tried the steps we listed above to no avail. That does not mean that you have to throw your breadsticks in the trash, however. Some alternative uses for burnt, hard, or stale bread include:
- You can make them into croutons. To do this, simply douse a frying pan with oil, add garlic, and break up the breadsticks. You can use these croutons in a salad or another dish.
- You can use them in ground beef. Sometimes, hamburger meat falls apart in the pan. However, to prevent this from happening, you can ground up the breadsticks and mix them into the meat. This will keep your patties from disintegrating.
- Use it as birdseed. If you have ducks, birds, or even squirrels in your neighborhood, you can feed them breadcrumbs in small amounts. Avoid making this a habit or throwing the crumbs into waterways, as this could disrupt your local ecosystem.
The primary goal when reheating breadsticks is to preserve the doughy bread inside and leave the outside flaky yet crunchy.You can reheat Olive Garden breadsticks in this way using a toaster oven, microwave, conventical oven, or even a steamer.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that you want to keep the breadsticks from burning or drying out. You can do this by applying moisture via a paper towel to your breadsticks before heating them up.