Irresistible mini garlic knots slathered in savory garlic butter and topped with fresh parsley and salty parmesan cheese.
Is there anything more enjoyable than twisted carbs slathered in butter, flavored with garlic, and dunked in marinara? If you think of something, let me know.
I created this mini version of garlic knots partly by popular request on Instagram and mostly because I wanted to eat twice as many. Let’s get into it!Jump to Recipe
I came across a great illustration (below) by Alex Delany in Bon Appétit in an article appropriately titled Perfection Exists, It’s Called a Garlic Knot where he describes the anatomy of a perfect garlic knot.
I was pleasantly surprised when my knots met (almost) all his criteria. A crispy, golden layer outside with a soft, doughy center, a ridiculous amount of garlic and fresh parsley, and the glistening shine of way too much butter. I mean come on—I nailed it.
I do enjoy putting parm cheese on them, which Alex states is not welcome, buuut that gets a pass because we like to ditch the recipe around here.
I played around with the size of the garlic knots and really enjoyed this mini version. But the great thing is you can make them as big or small as you like! The size of your knots is determined by the portions you divide your dough into before tying into knots. I’ll break it down in the recipe for you!
I have to warn you though, the minis are highly addicting. Especially served with a side of warm marinara. Irresistibleeee.
Tips for Making the Best Homemade Garlic Knots
When it comes to making homemade garlic knots, there are a few tips to keep in mind.
For me, a garlic knot must be buttery and garlicky AF. Period. To optimize flavor, I like to brush the knots with the garlic butter mixture at least three times throughout the process—once before baking, once during, and once right when they come out of the oven. You could do it a couple times while they’re baking if you really want that depth of flavor.
The recipe calls for warm water (approx. 110 degrees F) to combine with the yeast and the easiest/quickest way to do this is by using a digital meat thermometer. Heat the water in the microwave for 30-45 seconds and then set the meat thermometer in the water and let it rest against the side of the jar until it reaches 110 degrees F. If it needs time to cool, you can prep your other ingredients in the meantime.
This recipe makes almost 50 knots, so if you’re cooking for less than 6 people I suggest making a half batch so they stay fresh. The volume measurements can be tricky to halve for some of the dough ingredient in this recipe, so I like to measure those by weight with a kitchen scale. You can simply convert the measurements into grams and then divide that in half.
Here are the dough measurements for easy reference:
- 255g bread flour
- 6g sugar
- 1 tsp active dry or instant yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 180 ml (3/4 c) warm water
A great garlic knot is so flavorful it shouldn’t really need marinara, but it you’re going for it, I highly recommend Rao’s! They make a small 15.5 oz jar now that’s perfect to use for garlic knot dipping. And this is totally not sponsored btw – although I’d be v open to it.
I’ve been raving about this sauce since my boyfriend introduced me to it circa 2016?? It’s the most homemade tasting jarred sauce I’ve ever had. I use it on everything from chicken parm, to pasta, to meatballs, to breakfast dishes like eggs in purgatory. Too legit.
How to Ditch the Recipe: Mini Garlic Knot Edition
I like garlic knots to be fairly traditional, flavor wise. But you can go a few different directions with the ingredients and size. Here are some ideas to get you going.
Size: This recipe makes 48 mini knots, but you could easily turn it into 24 big knots, instead.
Here’s how: After you cut your dough ball into two equal pieces and let rise for 10 mins, slice both balls into quarters to get 8 pieces. Then you’ll flatten and cut each piece into 3 strips giving you 24 total strips.
Garlic: Fresh garlic will give you the most flavor, but you could swap for granulated garlic, or garlic powder when you’re in a pinch.
Cheese: Cheese is totally optional, but I love a salty parmesan to contrast the rich, buttery dough. Any type of salty aged hard cheese will do the trick, here.
Oil: You can swap the butter for olive oil in the garlic butter mixture, if you prefer.
Add ins: You could add any seasoning or dried herbs into the garlic butter (or oil) mixture you like, such as herbs de Provence or Italian seasoning, dried thyme, oregano, basil, or rosemary.
Homemade Mini Garlic Knots
For the knots
- 3 3/4 cups bread flour +extra for dusting
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups warm water approx 110 degrees F
- 2 tbsp olive oil +extra drizzle for bowl
For the garlic butter
- 1 1/2-2 sticks unsalted butter
- 4-6 cloves garlic pressed or minced
- 1/2 bunch fresh parsley finely chopped
- salt to tase
- parmesan cheese grated
- warm marinara sauce for dipping
For the dough
- In a large mixing bowl whisk flour, sugar, and salt to combine. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Combine the yeast and warm water (110 degrees F) and add to the well.You can test the water temp with a meat thermometer, if you have one. It doesn't have to be exact, just get as close to 110 degrees F as you can. Check out my Tips Section above for detailed instructions on the easiest way to do this.
- Mix with your hands and form a dough ball. If sticky add 1 tablespoon of flour at a time, and if dry add 1 tablespoon of water at a time, until the dough becomes solid. Knead for 5-10 minutes and form into a smooth firm ball. Grease a large bowl with a drizzle of olive in and put the dough in the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and store in a warm area, such as the inside of your oven (turned off) for 90 minutes or until it has doubled in size.
To make mini knots
- On a lightly floured surface, cut the dough into four equal pieces and let rise for 10 minutes.
- Dust the tops of the dough with flour (if sticky) and slice each piece into quarters with a sharp knife or a square dough cutter to get 16 sections. Flatten each section with a rolling pin into a rectangle(ish) shape and cut into three strips. You should end up with 48 strips total.
To make large knots
- On a lightly floured surface, cut the dough into two equal pieces and let rise for 10 minutes.
- Dust the tops of the dough with flour (if sticky) and slice each piece into quarters with a sharp knife or a square dough cutter to get 8 sections. Flatten each section with a rolling pin into a rectangle(ish) shape and cut into three strips. You should end up with 24 strips total.
- Lightly sprinkle the dough with flour. Roll each strip into a long rope and tie in a knot. They don’t have to be pretty. Place the knots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Set aside to let rise another 30 minutes
For the garlic butter mixture
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees (F). Melt the butter in a small sauce pan over med-low heat. Add garlic to the butter using a garlic press. Add the chopped parsley and season with salt. Simmer on low, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes, making sure not to burn the garlic. Then turn off the heat and set aside.
- Remove plastic wrap and brush the garlic butter mixture onto the knots. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until knots are golden brown on the top and bottom. While the knots are baking, heat up marinara sauce over low heat.
- When the knots are done, let cool for 5 minutes while you reheat the butter mixture. Brush knots with the garlic butter again, making sure to get plenty of garlic and parsley bits. Sprinkle knots with a hefty hand of parmesan cheese if you like, and serve with a side of warm marinara.
Did you make these mini garlic knots?
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