Less than 20 minutes to make (and most of that time is just heating olive oil and garlic!). In this easy appetizer, olive oil and balsamic vinegar pair with herbs and garlic for the easiest and most delicious bread dipping oil combo you've ever had! Best enjoyed with crusty French bread and a big glass of red wine!
You Will Love This
- It's simple and easy to throw together. If you need a last minute appetizer that you can make in just minutes - this is it! If you're like me you'll probably have most of these ingredients in your kitchen already which means you have this made in no time! Don't forget to check out a few of my other easy appetizers including my Baked Spinach Dip (with no mayo!), Herb and Garlic Marinated Feta, and Easy Baked Feta.
- Your friends are going to devour it! If you're having a ladies night and you want to serve something along side those bottles of Merlot, this easy appetizer needs to be on the table! Chances are good your friends will have had something similar to this at a restaurant, but they will be completely blown away by the fresh flavors of THIS dip! It puts all restaurant olive oil bread dips to shame 🙂
- It looks super fancy (but it's not). Fake it 'til you make it, right?! This dip makes it LOOK like you probably spent a lot of time in the kitchen or ordered from your favorite Italian restaurant, but in reality you heated a bit of minced garlic with olive oil and then poured it into a serving dish with dried herbs and balsamic vinegar. Accept the compliments graciously when your friends rave about this appetizer - you "worked hard" 😉 and you deserve it!
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Olive Oil - The main ingredient in this bread dip is olive oil, so make sure you pick something cold-pressed and organic. This is our family's favorite brand of olive oil.
- Fresh Garlic - Freshly minced garlic is going to taste best in this recipe. Garlic powder has it's place, but it's not in this recipe!
- Dried Oregano - You could also use fresh oregano in place of the dried oregano in this recipe. I'd recommend using about half the amount the recipe calls for if you're using fresh instead of dried.
- Dried Thyme - Again you could use fresh thyme in place of the dried thyme in this recipe. Use half the amount the recipe calls for if you're using fresh instead of dried.
- Salt and Pepper - Because the ingredient list is short and sweet, salt and pepper are going to go a long way in boosting the flavors of this dish. Don't skimp on the salt and pepper!
- Balsamic Vinegar - This is our favorite balsamic vinegar because of it's delicious flavor.
- Parmesan Cheese - I recommend shredding a fresh wedge of Parmesan yourself for optimum flavor. Pre-shredded Parmesan is okay in a pinch though!
- French Baguette - I love to serve with olive oil bread dip with a big loaf of crusty French baguette, sourdough bread, or ciabatta bread.
Add olive oil to a small sauce pan over medium low heat.
Add fresh minced garlic. Heat for about 12 minutes.
Add dried spices, salt, and black pepper.
Stir to combine.
Pour the herbaceous olive oil into a serving dish or shallow bowl.
And add balsamic vinegar.
Finish this dish with freshly shredded Parmesan.
Serve with sliced French baguette. Pair this dip alongside my favorite Creamy Vegan Tuscan Pasta for a hearty dinner your family and friends will love!
Choosing Olive Oil
- For an appetizer like this (and my Herb and Garlic Marinated Feta) where the ingredient list is short, make sure you use a good quality olive oil.
- But you don't need to spend $50 on a bottle. I like to look for an extra virgin olive oil that is cold pressed and organic. This will narrow down the selection giving you the purest and flavorful olive oil.
- It might take a few tries to find your favorite flavor of olive oil. There is a surprisingly wide range of flavors that olive oil can have depending on where the olives were grown including: peppery, floral, nutty or even spicy! This is my personal fave!
- Use fresh garlic. Don't use a jar of minced garlic. Grab some fresh cloves and mince them yourself. Fresh garlic is usually cheaper and honestly, you have no idea how long those jars of garlic have been sitting on the shelf before you buy them.
- Use quality olive oil. You don't have to spend an arm and a leg to get good olive oil. Look for something cold pressed, organic and most importantly in your price range!
- Shred your own Parmesan cheese. Pre-shredded cheeses are coated in cellulose so the shreds don't stick together. Skip the additives and opt for a wedge of Parmesan. There is nothing more delicious than freshly grated cheese!
Feel free to switch up the ingredients in this recipe based on your taste. Some of our favorite add ins include:
- dried rosemary
- dried basil
- red pepper flakes
- lemon juice
- extra minced fresh garlic cloves
Honestly, I try to stay away from the word healthy in regards to food. Are olive oil dip and bread something you should eat all day, every day? Well, of course not. As with all things in life, moderation is key. However, the great thing about making your own olive oil bread dip at home is that you are in control of what goes in it! Go with an organic cold-pressed olive oil and a crusty Artisan loaf of bread for this recipe!
I like to choose an olive oil that is cold-pressed and organic. I find that they have the best flavor and since this recipe is super simple, you'll want to find an olive oil that you enjoy. There's a wide variety of olive oils so you may have to try a few before you find your favorite.
This olive oil bread dip is best enjoyed immediately after being made! It's such a simple recipe and takes just minutes to throw together so you can indulge whenever you've got a craving for it!
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Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar Bread Dip
Olive oil and balsamic vinegar combine with herbs and garlic for the easiest and most delicious appetizer you've ever had! Best enjoyed with crusty French bread and a big glass of red wine!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minutes
- Total Time: 17 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 servings 1x
- Category: Appetizer
- Method: Stove Top
- Cuisine: American
- ½ cup olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- Kosher salt
- fresh cracked pepper
- 5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- sliced French baguette for serving
- In a small saucepan combine olive oil and garlic over medium low heat. Heat for 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove from heat, stir in oregano, thyme and a moderate pinch of salt and pepper.
- Pour oil mixture into a wide shallow serving dish.
- Pour in balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with shredded Parmesan.
- Serve with sliced French baguette for dipping and enjoy!
Use fresh garlic. Don't use a jar of minced garlic. Grab some fresh cloves and mince them yourself. Fresh garlic is usually cheaper and honestly, you have no idea how long those jars of garlic have been sitting on the shelf before you buy them.
Use quality olive oil. You don't have to spend an arm and a leg to get good olive oil. Look for something cold pressed, organic and most importantly in your price range!
Shred your own Parmesan cheese. Pre-shredded cheeses are coated in cellulose so the shreds don't stick together. Skip the additives and opt for a wedge of Parmesan. There is nothing more delicious than freshly grated cheese!
- Serving Size: ⅛ of olive oil dip
- Calories: 142
- Sugar: 1.5 g
- Sodium: 45 mg
- Fat: 14.7 g
- Saturated Fat: 2.4 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 2.3 g
- Fiber: 0.1 g
- Protein: 1.1 g
- Cholesterol: 1.8 mg
Keywords: bread dipping oil, bread dip, olive oil dip
This post was originally published in September of 2018. It was updated in Feburary 2019 to include process shots and tips for making the perfect olive oil & balsamic bread dip!
Thank you for the recipe. I found the flavour enhanced after leaving the dip a few hours at room temperature. Also needed to add two generous pinch of salt but that could be due to the quality of my salt.
I'm giving this recipe a 4 only because I'm not a fan of dried herbs in my olive oil. But I do love fresh ingredients in my flavored olive oil. The best I've found is from Gusto Della Vita. http://www.gustodellavita.com They have the best Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar I've ever had outside of Italy.
Thanks for the recommendation on olive oil, Terry! I will have to check that out. Thanks for leaving a review - I really appreciate it 🙂
My niece made the BEST homemade rosemary focaccia (Magnolia recipe). Now THAT would taste AWESOME warmed up, with this dip! Also, we usually use just EVOO and balsamic vinegar, but I know my husband would love this dip better with GARLIC!! I HIGHLY recommend trying this recipe with a "BOLD" extra virgin olive oil. (Pompeian brand) We tried it once and now we NEVER use any other kind of EVOO for these bread dips. Seriously, TRY the BOLD EVOO!!
I am going to have to give that bold EVOO a try! Rosemary focaccia would be delicious alongside this bread dip!!
Once in a while you run across a recipe that has you sharing the links with your friends after just a bite or two and this is it! Now, I will admit I used jar minced garlic AND balsamic glaze and as we are devouring the dip, I mentioned the tweaks for next time (fresh garlic & adding the glaze to the plate BEFORE the oil) and the universal opinion was NO, it’s perfect as is! (But I will anyway! The consistency of the glaze covered the herbs) This dish will be made at every gathering from here on out!
Nothing wrong with switching things up to use what you've got on hand! I am OBSESSED with balsamic glaze right now and I think that would work perfectly in this recipe! I'm so glad that everyone loved this one! I make this all the time at home because it's just that good and so quick and easy! Thank you for leaving a review, Mila. I really appreciate it 🙂
Just made it and we ate it on soft french bread, yummy. Added basil. The crunchy garlic bits in there were a treat. I ground up the dried herbs a bit for better flavor. I like a bit more balsamic, hubby a bit less, and so I served separate portions on a long plate. We cleaned it up. Made a can of split pea soup into a real meal.
I love when you can customize appetizers based on everyone's taste! I like to have a separate plate from my husband too 😉 Thanks so much for leaving a review, Ann. I'm so glad you enjoyed this recipe!!
Delicious!!!! This is my go to appetizer now! Thank you
I am so glad that you enjoyed this recipe, Melanie! Such a quick and easy appetizer. Thanks so much for leaving a review - I really appreciate it!
Sorry not for us. I put this recipe together exactly after battling minutes of pop up add gibberish to get to recipe. Way too strong. Way, way too much basalmic and herbs. Totally extinguished the bread (ciabatta) and olive oil flavor. Sorry but quite strong tasting. Even too strong for a salad dressing. Tasted like a sponge dipped in some far out exotic wine or something. All I taste is overwhelming vinegar and herbs. Even overwhelmed the garlic and parmesan cheese. Ok I tried your jazzed up recipe but will stick to the simple recipes from now on. Exnay the basalmic and too much herbs.
I really appreciate your honest opinion Luke - thank you! Do you enjoy balsamic vinegar in other dishes or dips? This bread dip is definitely not meant to be a salad dressing, and if your bread tasted like a sponge, I'd recommend trying a different kind of bread! This recipe has a prominent balsamic vinegar flavor and if you don't like balsamic vinegar, I would not recommend this recipe for you.
Very good but wondering why you heat the olive oil and cook the garlic for 12min? Haven’t seen any other recipe with that step.
It helps to mellow out the garlic a bit so that it's not quite as pungent. It also imparts that delicious garlic flavor into the oil. I would say it's not 100% necessary, but I love what it does to the flavor of the dish!
That’s ok Luke, I remember the first time I tasted real food too. You probably should stick to your “basic” recipes
Really it was so amazing and easy to make. I am so glad that you enjoyed this recipe. Thanks for sharing your information.
I am so glad that you enjoyed this recipe, Ravin! Thanks so much for leaving a review 🙂
Absolutely delicious. We’re having friends over for dinner next week and this will be our starter 😋
I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed this recipe! Thanks for leaving a review:)
This was so simple and so amazing! I will absolutely make again, for any occasion. Thank you!
WOOHOO! I am so glad that you enjoyed this recipe, Lynn! Thanks so much for leaving a review 🙂
Will be making this again and again! So delicious, thank you!!
I just made this last night and called it dinner! Such a quick and easy appetizer 🙂 Thanks for leaving a review Catherine!
Looking forward to trying this! Quick question: you mention French bread, but would homemade sour dough bread work with the flavor combination? Thanks
Sourdough would be great!! I think the flavors of this dip would work well with any kind of crusty bread for sure!! Great question 🙂
Hi! I am wondering if this could be put in a jar! I am wanting to give it as a gift with a loaf of homemade French bread. Thanks!
What a perfect gift idea Sarah! My rule of thumb is usually that if my dip/dressing has fresh garlic or herbs, it needs to be refrigerated (or it could possibly go rancid). Because of the olive oil, this dip would not do well refrigerated (the oil will turn solid). However, you could use GARLIC POWDER and DRIED herbs and THEN I think it would do just fine in a jar at room temperature! Great question!!
amazing picture representation which helps to get how to do exactly and the recipe is simple and sweet
thanks you so much for sharing and keep posting we love you and your recipes