This 20-minute French bread pizza is sure to become your new go-to for quick and easy family dinners! Cheese and pepperoni are loaded onto the garlic butter-brushed loaf of bread, then baked until gooey and bubbly.
When you’re craving homemade pizza but not the work that comes with making your own dough, give this French bread pizza a try! The recipe is as easy as slicing the French bread loaf in half, slathering it with garlic butter, then layering cheese and pepperoni on top. Every bite is gooey and cheesy with a crisp and tender crust that’s just plain heavenly!
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Why this recipe works
French bread pizza comes in handy for easy family dinners because it’s ready in 20 minutes and can be topped with you and your family’s favorite toppings.
- The easiest homemade pizza. It doesn’t get much easier than cutting a loaf of bread in half, adding your favorite pizza toppings on top, then baking. No need to make homemade pizza dough in this recipe!
- Soft and fluffy bread. French bread is known for its height, as well as its airy and fluffy crumb. When you use it to make a pizza, you can expect every bite to be delightfully soft, yet crisp and tender, and never soggy.
- Fun to customize. Like most homemade pizza recipes, you can customize your personal French bread pizza with any toppings you love. Find all kinds of ideas and variations below!
Waiting for bread dough to rise isn’t always my cup of tea, which is why I’ve grown to love unconventional pizza crusts. My eggplant pizza, Mexican pizza, and cauliflower pizza all ditch the traditional dough for lighter alternatives without sacrificing any of the flavors.
The French bread pizza is made with familiar ingredients you would find on almost every pepperoni pizza. The only difference is that the pizza dough is swapped for a halved bread loaf! This is what you need:
- French bread. French bread is similar to a baguette but has a larger, rounder shape. It’s famous for its light and fluffy interior and hard, crusty exterior. You can find French bread at most bakeries and in the bakery section at major grocery stores.
- Butter. Melted.
- Garlic. Minced garlic cloves are stirred with the melted butter, then brushed onto the toasted bread.
- Tomato sauce. My easy Pomodoro sauce and keto pizza sauce are perfect for this baguette pizza. Otherwise, use your favorite bottle of store-bought marinara or pizza sauce.
- Mozzarella. Shred the mozzarella yourself. Pre-shredded cheese has anti-caking agents that prevent it from melting properly.
- Pepperoni slices. I like using the mini pepperoni slices but regular slices work, too.
- Parmesan. To top on the pizza.
- Crushed red pepper flakes. For a subtle heat.
How to make French bread pizza
This is one of the easiest homemade pizza recipes you’ll ever make! It’s ready to eat after 4 simple steps:
Step 1 – Brush with garlic butter
Slice the French bread loaf in half lengthwise. Stir the melted butter and minced garlic together, then brush it on the cut side of the bread.
Step 2 – Toast the bread
Lightly toast the garlic butter-dressed bread halves in the oven until lightly crisp.
Step 2 – Add the toppings
Spread the tomato sauce on the cut side of the toasted bread. Add the mozzarella, pepperoni, parmesan, and red pepper flakes on top.
Step 3 – Bake
Bake the pizzas until the cheese is melted and gooey. Enjoy!
Tips to make the best recipe
- Always toast the bread. Lightly toasting the bread in the oven prevents it from becoming soggy when you add the toppings and bake it for a second time.
- For the best garlic butter. You can enhance the garlic butter by stirring in dried Italian herbs or red chili flakes.
- To serve. Serve the pizza as two large halves or slice them into smaller hand-held pieces when you’re serving a crowd.
More topping ideas
Follow the recipe to a tee or put your own spin on it with any of these toppings:
- Sauce. Alfredo sauce, Italian tomato sauce, garlic sauce, barbecue sauce, ranch dressing, or Caesar dressing.
- Meat. Diced chicken breasts, crumbled Italian sausage, prosciutto, sauteed ground beef, leftover steak slices, or diced ham.
- Cheese. Cheddar, provolone, gouda, ricotta, pepper jack, or fontina.
- Vegetables. Bell peppers, black olives, red onions, zucchini, mushrooms, artichokes, or jalapenos.
- Extras. Fresh basil, pesto, hot honey, sun-dried tomatoes, arugula, or dried Italian seasonings.
Follow the variations below to take your homemade French bread pizza up another level:
- BBQ chicken French bread pizza. Use BBQ sauce instead of red sauce, top the pizza with shredded chicken and red onions instead of pepperoni, and use gouda cheese instead of parmesan.
- Hawaiian pizza. Layer the bread with pineapple and diced ham instead of pepperoni.
- Vegetarian French bread pizza. Omit the pepperoni or use your favorite plant-based pepperoni instead. Feel free to load the pizza with veggies, too!
- Vegan pizza. Use vegan butter to make the garlic butter and add your favorite vegan pizza toppings, like vegan shredded cheese and vegan pepperoni.
Recommended tools to make this recipe
- Bread knife. Use a large serrated knife to slice the loaf of bread in half.
- Baking sheet. To hold the pizza as it bakes.
- Cheese grater. To grate the mozzarella cheese.
More homemade pizza recipes
Frequently asked questions
After it’s toasted lightly for 10 minutes, the pizza will only need to be baked for another 10 minutes (or until the cheese is melted).
Ranch dressing is a must for dipping! For a well-rounded dinner, pair the pizza with a Caesar salad and simple cooked vegetables, like broccoli and cabbage steaks. The kids will love it if you have curly fries and chicken nuggets on the side, too!
The next best substitute would be a large, fluffy loaf of bread with a soft crust. A sourdough boule should work well, although it won’t be as long as French bread.
French Bread Pizza
- Preheat oven to 200C/400F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the French bread lengthways. Whisk together the melted butter and garlic and spread over the top of the bread.
- Bake the bread for 7-8 minutes or until lightly toasted.
- Remove the bread from the oven, spread with tomato sauce, then add the mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, and parmesan cheese.
- Bake the French bread pizza for 7-8 minutes or until the cheese has melted.
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