This recipe for French Bread Pizza is so easy to make, and so much better than anything from the frozen food aisle! French bread is brushed with garlic butter and toasted, then topped with all your favorite pizza toppings and baked again.
This is one of my Beginner-Friendly recipes I know you’ll want to keep on hand!
French bread pizzas are pretty well known, but are unfortunately mostly known for how disappointing they can be.
Sometimes the “crust”, aka the bread, will get pretty soggy, and the frozen French bread pizzas are just not all that fantastic.
So when my kids asked for some of these pizzas a few months ago, I knew I had to find a way to fix the soggy crust issue, and make sure the sauce, cheese, and toppings all had great flavor of their own.
After making these just one time, the kids now request these pizzas at least once a month! As a Mom, that’s a huge win.
Even though my recipe involves a couple of extra steps, compared to some others, I think those steps are well worth it, since they keep the bread nice and crispy!
How to make french bread pizzas?
This is just an overview; the full ingredients and directions are in the recipe card toward the bottom of this post.
- Make garlic butter. You can melt the butter in the microwave or on the stovetop, whichever works best for you.
- Brush on bread. Be liberal here, you want alllllll that flavor.
- Bake. Baking the garlic butter bread helps get the bread nice and crispy, which is hard to do once it’s topped with all the pizza toppings.
- Add cheese and bake again. Sprinkle some cheese right on top of the bread. Baking it with cheese creates a barrier so the pizza sauce doesn’t just soak right into the bread and make a soggy pizza.
- Top pizzas. Sauce, cheese, toppings.
There are several steps I’ve added to this recipe to help keep the bread part of the pizza crispy, and not soggy. Brushing the bread with garlic butter and baking it adds amazing flavor, as well as texture. Also, melting some cheese on the bread before adding any sauce creates a barrier that prevents sogginess. I don’t recommend skipping these steps, but ultimately, it’s your recipe, and it’s up to you 🙂
Variations of this recipe
- Un-toasted – if you prefer a softer texture to the pizza, you can skip the step involving toasting the bread with the garlic butter.
- Different bread – any longer type of bread with a crusty outside will work for this recipe if you can’t find French bread. Italian bread, or ciabatta bread are great substitutes.
- Other toppings – I kept this recipe simple, with just pepperoni and cheese, but the sky is the limit on the toppings you can use. Whatever you’d put on a traditional pizza, you can put on these.
- Other sauce – we definitely prefer these pizzas with my homemade pizza sauce recipe, but if you’d rather use store-bought, it’ll still taste amazing. Alternatively, you could use anything as the base sauce – bbq sauce (for a bbq chicken pizza), etc.
While I’m sure you can, I don’t recommend it. Microwaving it gives the pizza a chewy, gummy texture that isn’t very appetizing.
Absolutely! See the make ahead directions below for all the info.
Making french bread pizzas ahead of time
The great thing about this recipe is that you can assemble the pizzas ahead and freeze them!
Complete the recipe through the “garlic butter and first bake” section, then cool completely. Top with sauce, cheese, pepperoni or any other toppings, then transfer to a wax paper lined baking sheet.
Place the baking sheet in the freezer for about 1 hour, or until pizzas are hardened.
Once they’re hardened, transfer to freezer-safe containers and freeze for up to 3 months.
To cook, bake as directed, from frozen, adding a couple extra minutes.
Leftover pizza should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and eaten within 3-4 days.
To reheat, bake in a preheated 350°F oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until heated through.
These half sheet pan is the perfect size for making these French bread pizzas. I’ve had multiple of these baking sheets for years and they hold up so well!
This recipe also provides a great opportunity to get your kids in the kitchen to help! This is my son (who desperately needed a haircut lol), helping make the pizzas. I did the baking part, but he added all the toppings.
Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @the_chunky_chef on Facebook and Instagram!
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp dried parsley
- 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning blend
- 1 loaf French bread not a baguette
- 1 cup pizza sauce more or less, to taste
- 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese more or less, to taste
- 2/3 cup sliced pepperoni more or less, to taste
- 1/4 cup grated or shredded Parmesan cheese more or less, to taste
- sprinkle of pizza seasoning optional
- Preheat oven to 425°F and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Set aside.
Garlic Butter and First Bake
- Melt butter, in the microwave or on the stovetop, and combine melted butter with garlic powder, parsley and Italian seasoning.
- Slice French bread in half crosswise, then slice those halves in half again lengthwise. You’ll end up with 4 pieces of bread, somewhere around 7-8 inches long, and 3-4 inches wide.
- Brush garlic butter mixture over the cut sides of the bread, then bake for 6-8 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and sprinkle with a bit of the mozzarella cheese. Return to the oven and bake for 4-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
Finish the Pizzas
- While pizzas are in the oven, for a crispier pepperoni, add pepperoni in a single layer on a plate and microwave for about 40 seconds. If you don't like crispy pepperoni, you can omit this step.
- Remove baking sheet from the oven, then top pizzas with pizza sauce, remaining mozzarella cheese, partially cooked pepperoni, Parmesan cheese and pizza seasoning.
- Return to oven and bake about 8-10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
- If desired, drizzle with any leftover garlic butter and serve hot.
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