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French Bread Pizza

April 15, 2023

At the end of a busy week, we want to make something simple and comforting that our families will love. This cheesy, warm french bread pizza does just that.


homemade french bread pizza cut into slices made with marinara, cheese, pepperoni and fresh basil
Photography by Gayle McLeod

The Best Recipe for French Bread Pizza

Remember those English muffin pizzas we craved and loved as a kid? The crispy crust, chewy yet tender center, and cheesy, saucy top? Well, this is the elevated version! It’s quick, it’s budget-friendly, and it’s oh-so-delicious. We love the added pop of flavor from the garlic butter, which can’t be compared to the taste of regular frozen french bread pizza. Serve these as an appetizer at your next homestyle Sunday dinner or an after-school snack for the kids – they’re versatile enough for all occasions!

french bread, pizza sauce, mozzarella, parmesan, butter, spices, pepperoni and basil in bowls to make french bread pizza

What is French Bread Pizza Made Of?

Classic French bread pizza recipes usually call for a hearty loaf of french bread – but feel free to swap it out for a lovely Sourdough Bread – pizza sauce, cheese, and a variety of your favorite toppings.

In our recipe for French bread pizza, you’ll need the following:

  • Unsalted butter

  • Fresh parsley

  • Garlic cloves and garlic powder

  • Sea salt

  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

  • French or ciabatta bread

  • Pizza sauce or make your own like this Homemade Marinara Sauce

  • Shredded mozzarella cheese

  • Toppings such as pepperoni, cooked ground sausage, olives, onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and herbs like parsley and basil

Make it your own and switch up the pizza sauce for BBQ Sauce for BBQ chicken french bread pizzas, Vodka Sauce for vodka chicken french bread pizza, or even Homemade Basil Pesto!

butter, parsley, garlic, garlic powder, salt and parmesan in a bowl to make a spread for french bread pizza
butter, parsley, garlic, garlic powder, salt and parmesan being stirred in a bowl to make a spread for french bread pizza
a loaf of french bread sliced in half topped with a butter parmesan spread on a baking sheet to make french bread pizza
a loaf of french bread sliced in half topped with a butter parmesan spread on a baking sheet to make french bread pizza

How Do I Make French Bread pizza?

Follow these simple steps below to make homemade French bread pizza.

  1. Toast: make the garlic butter! This parmesan-y, buttery, garlicky mixture gets spread lengthwise across both halves, and then the entire french bread gets popped under the broiler for a few minutes until nice and toasty.

  2. Top: add a thin layer of sauce, followed by a generous helping of fresh mozzarella. Make it your own by customizing your toppings, such as little pepperonis and black olives! Pro Tip: this is a way to involve the little ones in pizza night! Broil for 1-2 minutes until bubbly and gooey.

  3. Enjoy: Wait a few minutes for the cheese to cook, and then, bon appetit!

french bread sliced in half topped with butter, spices and pizza sauce on a baking sheet to make french bread pizza
french bread sliced in half lengthwise topped with butter, spices, pizza sauce, mozzarella and pepperoni on a baking sheet

How Do You Keep French Bread Pizza From Getting Soggy?

If you want a crispy, crunchy crust with a soft, chewy interior and a saucy, cheesy pizza top, we’ve got you! Follow some of these tips to help you make the absolute best french bread pizza.

  1. Cutting the bread: do your best to cut it in half evenly so that one side isn’t thicker than the other. We don’t want sauce to drip through! Pro Tip: once cut in half, slightly press down on the bread to flatten; this will prevent it from curling too much in the oven, which also helps prevent soggy crusts.

  2. French bread pizza cook time is super important: since the french bread, or ciabatta bread, is already baked, keep in mind you’ll only be heating it to toast and warm it through. We do this in two steps, but the first step is crucial: crisp up the bread base to ensure that all the sauce doesn’t soak in!

  3. Choose your amount of sauce: We love sauce just as much as the next, but to ensure the inside gives the right amount of chew, we make sure not to over sauce the bread, which can result in a soggy french bread pizza.

homemade french bread pizza on a baking sheet just out of the oven made with marinara, cheese and pepperoni

What to Serve with French Bread Pizza?

We know a homemade French bread pizza is delicious on its own, but we might think it’s even better with a big, green leafy salad. Some of our go-to's are a classic Caesar Salad, The Kale Salad, a Simple Italian Salad, or even simpler Butter Lettuce with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette. We always pair it with the freshness of a Watermelon and Cucumber Salad if it's summer. And may we suggest Jalapeño Poppers to start? When we’re in the mood for veggies but not so much greens, we love Roasted Zucchini with Parmesan, Perfectly Roasted Broccoli, or a Pesto Zoodle Salad. If you’re slicing up this cheesy french bread pizza and using it as a side, we recommend serving it alongside some of our favorite, easy, Italian-American mains: Eggplant Parmesan, Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Pasta, or Baked Rigatoni.

Tools You’ll Need for this French Bread Pizza Recipe

Make Pizza Night A Weekly Thing!

We love the idea of pizza when you’ve had a long week! It’s super fun to get the family involved, usually not too difficult (you can purchase pizza dough at your local grocery store), and it doesn’t take too long to bake. Here are our favorites:

homemade french bread pizza cut into slices next to bowls of parmesan and red pepper flakes for topping
homemade french bread pizza cut into slices made with marinara, cheese, pepperoni and fresh basil

Fluffy, Fresh, and French (Bread Pizzas!)

Tell us how your french bread pizza turned out! Did you make it for a quick weeknight meal? A fun weekend appetizer? An after-school snack? Show us by tagging us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

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French Bread Pizza

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  10 min
  • Cook Time:  10 min
  • Calories: 587


  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup minced fresh parsley
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 (1-pound) loaf French or ciabatta bread
  • 1½ cups pizza sauce
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Optional Toppings:

  • Pepperoni
  • Cooked ground sausage
  • Olives
  • Thinly sliced onions
  • Thinly sliced bell peppers
  • Mushrooms
  • Finely chopped parsley
  • Fresh basil leaves


  1. In a medium bowl, combine the butter, parsley, garlic, garlic powder, salt, and half of the parmesan.

  2. Halve the bread lengthwise, being careful to keep the thickness the same on both sides.

  3. Set the broiler to HIGH with a rack in the center position.

  4. Evenly spread the butter on the cut sides of the loaves. Place the bread, buttered-sides up on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese. Broil the cheese bread until golden, 3-4 minutes.

  5. Remove the bread from the oven and spread the pizza sauce on top. Top with cheese and toppings. Return to the oven for 1-2 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories587
  • Protein21 g
  • Carbohydrates48 g
  • Total Fat35 g
  • Dietary Fiber3 g
  • Cholesterol96 mg
  • sodium1087 mg
  • Total Sugars5 g

French Bread Pizza

Questions & Reviews

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    Any questions?

    Need to change up some ingredients? Unsure about a step in the method? Click the Ask a Question button above. We’re here for you.

  • Kay

    Why have I never thought to do this? This was so simple, fun for my kids to help and super delicious. We customized the topping for each person and everyone loved it!

    Thanks Kay! We are so glad your family had fun with it!