How to Microwave Garlic Bread for Fast and Easy Meals

Categorized as Microwave Cooking
Featured image for an article about How to Microwave Garlic Bread

Garlic bread is a beloved accompaniment to countless dishes like pasta, soup, salad, and more. Its warm, garlicky, and savory flavor takes these meals to the next level. While baking garlic bread in the oven yields the best texture, you can still make tasty garlic bread in the microwave in just minutes.

Read on for a complete guide to microwaving garlic bread, including tips for best results, recommended cook times, mistakes to avoid, and FAQs.

Key Takeaways

1. Microwaving is much faster than oven-baking, making garlic bread convenient for quick meals.
2. Cover the bread loosely to prevent drying out but allow steam to escape.
3. Microwave frozen garlic bread in 30 second intervals, flipping halfway through.
4. Let the bread rest 1 minute after microwaving before serving for the best texture.
5. Eat microwaved garlic bread immediately before it hardens as it cools. Leftovers can be rebaked to reheat.

Benefits of Microwaving vs Oven Baking

Microwaving garlic bread has two main advantages compared to oven baking:

  • Speed – Microwaved garlic bread is ready in 30 seconds to 1 minute. Oven baking takes 10-15 minutes.
  • Convenience – You don’t need to preheat the oven or wait for it to be available. Just pop the garlic bread in the microwave. This makes it easy to have garlic bread with weeknight meals or impromptu snacks.

However, oven baking does yield better texture with crispy, golden edges. Microwaved garlic bread will be softer and chewier.

How to Microwave Garlic Bread

Microwaving garlic bread is simple. Here are step-by-step instructions.


  • Garlic bread slices or loaf
  • Paper towel


  1. Prepare the garlic bread if using a full loaf by cutting into slices. Frozen garlic bread can be used without thawing.
  2. Arrange slices on a microwave-safe plate in a single layer without overlapping.
  3. Cover loosely with a paper towel to prevent mess from garlic spraying but allow steam to escape.
  4. Microwave for 30 seconds on high power. For frozen garlic bread, microwave 30 seconds per side.
  5. Check doneness and continue microwaving in 10 second increments if needed. The bread should be lightly browned and feel soft when pressed.
  6. Serve and enjoy immediately for best texture.

Microwave Times

Use these microwave times as a guide, microwaving longer if needed:

Garlic BreadCook Time
2 slices, fresh30 seconds
2 slices, frozen30 seconds per side
4 slices, fresh45 seconds
4 slices, frozen45 seconds per side

Tips for Best Results

Follow these tips to successfully microwave flavorful, tender garlic bread every time.

  • Use fresh, soft bread. Hard, stale bread will become tough.
  • Avoid overlaps to ensure even cooking.
  • Covering prevents dryness. Vent allows steam to escape.
  • Flip frozen garlic bread halfway through cooking.
  • Check often to avoid overcooking.
  • Allow to rest 1 minute before serving.
  • Serve immediately before it hardens.

Common Microwaving Mistakes

Avoid these common garlic bread microwaving mistakes:

  • Microwaving too long, resulting in tough, dry bread.
  • Not covering, leading to dryness.
  • Covering too tightly, making bread soggy.
  • Overlapping slices, preventing even cooking.
  • Not allowing frozen garlic bread to thaw slightly before cooking.
  • Letting it sit too long after cooking, causing it to harden.

Adding Crispness to Microwaved Garlic Bread

Microwaved garlic bread often turns out soft and chewy rather than crispy. However, there are several tricks you can try to add some crunch and crispness to your microwaved garlic bread slices.

One easy option is to broil the garlic bread for 1-2 minutes after microwaving. The short time under the direct high heat of the broiler will quickly toast and crisp the exterior of the bread. Just keep an eye on it to avoid scorching.

For more crispness throughout, you can brush the bread lightly with melted butter or olive oil before popping it in the microwave. The fat helps the bread crisp up as it cooks. Alternatively, brush the microwaved garlic bread with some melted butter after cooking.

For the crispiest results, you can pan fry the garlic bread in a skillet with a small amount of oil until it reaches your desired crispness. Flip once during cooking. This gives you the golden brown crust of fried bread with the speed of the microwave.

No matter which method you choose, keep a close watch as the bread can go from crispy to burnt quite quickly. With the right technique, you can enjoy garlic bread with a satisfying crunch even when made in the microwave.

Keeping and Reheating Extra Microwaved Garlic Bread

Microwaved garlic bread really should be eaten right away for optimal freshness and texture. However, you can store leftovers for later.

After cooking, let any remaining garlic bread cool to room temperature. Then place it in a sealed airtight container or bag. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Freezing is not recommended, as garlic bread hardens when thawed after freezing.

To reheat refrigerated leftovers, wrap the garlic bread in foil and bake it in a 300 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 5 minutes. This restores it to a pleasant warm, slightly crisp state. Avoid microwaving garlic bread leftovers, as this makes the bread tough and chewy.

With proper storage and reheating, you can enjoy microwaved garlic bread even a day or two later. Just be sure to seal and refrigerate it promptly after initially cooking.

Microwaving Garlic Bread Alternatives

Other garlic-flavored bread products can also be microwaved:

  • Garlic knots – Microwave 1 minute, flipping halfway.
  • Cheese garlic bread – Microwave 30-60 seconds depending on thickness.
  • Garlic bagels – Slice bagels, then microwave open-faced 45 seconds.
  • Garlic pita – Microwave 15-30 seconds per side.

Adjust cook times as needed to prevent drying out or overcooking.

Microwaving Garlic Bread FAQs

Get answers to common questions about making garlic bread in the microwave.

Is microwaved garlic bread healthy?

Garlic bread is high in carbs and low in nutrients whether oven-baked or microwaved. Opt for whole grain bread and limit portions.

Can you microwave frozen garlic bread?

Yes, frozen garlic bread microwaves well from frozen. Cook 30 seconds per side, increasing time if needed.

Does microwaved garlic bread taste good?

While it won’t have the same crispy texture, microwaved garlic bread still offers soft, warm, garlicky flavor.

What is the best bread for microwaved garlic bread?

Choose a soft bread like French or Italian. Baguettes and crusty breads get tough. Whole grain breads hold moisture well.

Why does my microwaved garlic bread harden?

Garlic bread hardens as it cools after being microwaved. Serve immediately before this happens. Staling also causes hardness.


With just a few minutes in the microwave, you can have piping hot garlic bread ready to serve. Microwaving is much faster than oven baking and requires no preheating or waiting for the oven. While microwaved garlic bread won’t have quite the signature crunch of oven-baked bread, it still provides plenty of garlicky flavor.

Follow the tips here like using soft bread, preventing overlap, and serving immediately for the best results. With its speed and convenience, microwaved garlic bread is an easy way to round out a meal any night of the week.

By Rosie Elliott

I’m Rosie. I’m a professional chef with experience in Western, Mediterranean, and Italian cuisine. I’ve been cooking for over 15 years, and I have two daughters that keep me busy!

Leave a comment