Last Updated on August 14, 2022
Curious about how you can substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh ones? This article will explain what you should use, how much, and how to!
Using fresh bread crumbs in recipes is underrated and many people don’t realize the benefits you can get from it.
What Are Dried Bread Crumbs And Fresh Bread Crumbs?
This is something that not many people know of, but there are two types of breadcrumbs used for fillings, stuffings, and crumb coatings. They include fresh and dried bread crumbs. Pretty self-explanatory, right? But most of these elements usually are – at first.
There is actually a lot more to dried and fresh bread crumbs than initially meets the eye. You can choose between these two, but then also choose different types of each.
So, what is dried bread crumbs? This category of bread crumbs is made from dried bread slices. The type of bread that is used can vary, but often it is just a plain loaf of white bread. Once the slices are completely dry, they are crumbled into various sizes.
Dried bread crumbs can create exceptionally crispy and crunchy textures because they don’t contain a lot of moisture.
Then, you get fresh bread crumbs. These are simply crumbs made from torn-up fresh slices or pieces of bread. This type of breadcrumb is better suited for fillings and stuffings. They already contain moisture but can still absorb a ton of delicious juices from the surrounding ingredients.
So, if fresh bread crumbs are so great, why aren’t they used more often? Dried bread crumbs likely became the go-to option in the kitchen because of their shelf life. Fresh bread crumbs don’t last nearly as long and are highly susceptible to mold growth.
When to substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh ones?
If you make any type of stuffing, filling, or mixture that needs binding, use fresh bread crumbs instead of dried ones.
As we have mentioned, the fresh breadcrumbs will help absorb the juices from the surrounding ingredients. This will help the product retain more moisture while adding a ton more flavor.
Furthermore, because fresh breadcrumbs can absorb a lot more moisture, they will be able to help bind other ingredients together a lot better.
Why would you want to use fresh bread crumbs?
Other than the very good reasons we mentioned above, you may have an alternative reason to substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh.
The main alternative reason is that people ran out of dried crumbs or because they cannot find any. Another very good reason to try this option is to use any old, stale, or leftover pieces of bread.
It is also a fantastic way to experiment with different flavors and textures. While all types of fresh bread will perform the same functions, the different types can create delicious flavor pairings and uber juicy textures.
What Are Some Dried Bread Crumb Substitute Ideas?
Today we are specifically talking about how to substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh alternatives. But, keep in mind that just because you don’t have your regular option, that doesn’t mean you have to use fresh ones instead.
There are many different kinds of dried bread crumbs available. And, you can even make your own at home!
So, for fresh bread crumb alternatives, you can choose to buy from a store or make your own at home. There are fewer options available in store because they don’t last very long and not many people buy them. So, we just recommend making your own – it will also be cheaper!
The biggest decision you have to make is to choose a specific type of fresh bread you want to use. This choice is made easy if you are trying to use any leftover slices or old stale bread.
But, if you intentionally buy fresh bread for crumbs, don’t just immediately grab the fresh white load. You’d be surprised as to how big a difference a flavored bread makes.
We personally love buying sourdough, seeded loaves, multigrain, and even ciabatta for fresh crumbs. They are all very flavorful and will absorb the moisture nicely.
Some loaves of fresh bread won’t work as well. These are often the dense types of bread like pumpernickel, rye bread, and gluten-free loaves.
How To Substitute Dry Bread Crumbs For Fresh Ones
Now, it isn’t a one-to-one substitution. Especially not if you are using leftover slices.
So, first, calculate how much soft bread you will need for your recipe. 1 cup of soft bread crumbs is equal to about 3 slices of fresh bread (using a slice of white bread as a size reference).
3/4 cups of dried bread crumbs are also the equivalent of 3 slices of dried bread.
So, for every cup of dried bread crumbs, the recipe calls for, you should use 1 1/4 cups of fresh bread crumbs.
Tips For How To Substitute Dry Bread Crumbs For Fresh Alternatives
When you substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh ones instead, always use a soft fresh bread. Even if it is stale, it shouldn’t be dense. Dense fresh bread will still absorb moisture, but not nearly as well.
Do not use fresh bread crumbs as a substitute for crumb coatings. Because of their high moisture level, they will absorb the moisture from the item, which will ultimately just create a soft soggy coating, not a crisp one. And no, there is no way to cheat it other than making dried bread crumbs from your soft loaf.
You can still season fresh bread crumbs with various ground spices and fresh herbs. Once they start absorbing liquids, these ingredients will also impart their flavor to the bread.
Wrapping It Up
As you can see, to substitute dry bread crumbs for fresh ones isn’t as difficult as a lot of people make it out to be. The substitution ratio is also easy to calculate and your final products will be even juicier and more flavorful than before!
If you still have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask us in the comments below. You can also have a look on our site for some other amazing informative topics.
What can I use instead of fresh bread crumbs?
Naturally, an obvious replacement is dried bread crumbs. But, if you are looking for a completely different option, you can also use crushed cornflakes, chips, pretzels, crackers, or rolled oats.
How do I make fresh bread crumbs?
To make fresh bread crumbs is extremely easy and quick. Just tear up a slice of fresh bread, but leave out the crust. The crust won't absorb as much moisture, so it is just a waste adding it. Use the crust to make croutons for a salad. When tearing the fresh bread by hand, you can control how big the pieces should be.
What is the difference between regular bread crumbs and panko bread crumbs?
Panko bread crumbs are made from dried slices of white bread without any crust. The pieces are also much drier and flakier, producing an overall crispier texture for your food pieces. Regular breadcrumbs are made with the bread and crust part. They are usually a lot finer in texture and will produce less crispy products.
How do you soften dry bread crumbs?
You can soften dry bread crumbs by breaking them into smaller pieces. This will give you a less crisp and hard texture in food. But, if you use the dried bread crumbs for fillings or stuffings, you can soak them in a flavored liquid to soften. Or, just allow the mixture to rest at room temperature so the crumbs will absorb the juices from the mixture.
Lindy Van Schalkwyk is a culinary specialist with a background in Advanced Cooking, Advanced Pâtisserie, Media Communications and Nutrition. She has gained invaluable experience in the culinary industry having worked in some of the top restaurants in Africa in 2016 and 2017. Her expertise in nutrition has enabled her to develop recipes for special dietary needs. In 2018, Lindy began working in the Food Media industry, focusing on recipe development, recipe writing, food writing and food styling.