Garlic Knots

It is perfectly OK to use store-bought pizza dough here. One 14-ounce package of pizza dough will approximate this recipe.

It really helps to use a kitchen scale for measuring the flour. If you don't have a scale, use a scoop and level method of measuring the flour.

  • Prep time: 4 hours
  • Cook time: 14 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 32 knots


If you are making your own dough:

  • 3/4 cup warm water (105°F-115°F)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1  package (2 1/4 teaspoons) of active dry yeast (check the expiration date on the package)
  • 2 1/4 cups (300 g) bread flour (can use all-purpose but bread flour will give you a crisper crust)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt

OR, if you are using store-bought pizza dough:

  • 14-ounces pizza dough

Garlic-Butter Coating:

  • 5 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup parsley, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt


If you are making your own dough, follow steps 1-3. If using store-bought pizza dough, let thaw to room temperature and proceed to step 4.

1 Proof the yeast: Stir the yeast and sugar into a small bowl with the warm water and let it sit for 3-5 minutes, until it starts to foam. (If it foams up, this means the yeast is alive and active. If not, it means the yeast is dead and you'll need to get a new package of yeast. It always helps to check the use-by date on yeast.)

stir yeast water sugar for garlic knots proof the yeast for garlic knots

2 Make the dough: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Make a well in the center of the flour and pour in the olive oil, then the yeast-sugar-water mixture.

mix ingredients for galic knots dough knead garlic knots dough for 5 to 10 minutes

Mix this together to form a soft dough and knead for 5-10 minutes. (Can use a KitchenAid mixer with a dough hook for this step.)

3 Let the dough rise: With well-floured hands, shape the dough into a ball and lightly coat with olive oil. Put it in a large bowl, top the bowl with plastic wrap and set it in a sunny spot to rise to double its size. This should take anywhere from 90 minutes to several hours.

Alternatively you can put it in the refrigerator overnight or up to 24 hours to rise slowly (and develop more flavor).

4 Quarter the dough and flatten into rectangles: When the dough has doubled in size, cut it into fourths.

(At this point you if you want to make the dough ahead and freeze, wrap the dough quarters in plastic wrap and freeze for later. Defrost overnight in the fridge to use.)

Set out 2 large baking sheet and line them with a silicone liner or parchment paper (spray parchment paper with some baking spray).

Working with one piece at a time, flatten into rough 4x5-inch rectangles.

5 Slice the dough rectangles into strips: Using a sharp knife or pizza wheel, slice each dough rectangle into 4 long strips (1 x 5-inches).

Cut these strips in half in the middle. You should now have 8 (1 x 2.5-inch) strips.

cut rectangles into 8 strips for garlic knots

6 Form knots: Take one piece at a time and work it into the shape of a snake.


Then tie it in a knot.

garlic-knots-method-3 garlic-knots-method-4

Set each knot down on the baking sheet and repeat with the remaining dough. Remember that the dough will rise, so leave some space between each knot.

7 Brush with olive oil and let sit to rise: Once all the knots are tied, paint them with a little olive oil.

garlic-knots-method-5 garlic-knots-method-6

Loosely cover them with plastic wrap and let them rise again until doubled in size, anywhere from 90 minutes to three hours or so. Toward the end of this rising period, preheat the oven to 400°.

8 Bake the knots: Uncover the knots and bake in the oven 12-15 minutes, or until nicely browned on top.

garlic-knots-method-7 garlic-knots-method-8

9 Make garlic butter parsley glaze: While the garlic knots are baking, melt the butter in a small pot and cook the garlic gently in it just long enough to take off that raw garlic edge, about 1-2 minutes over medium-low heat. Add the salt and parsley and stir to combine. Turn off the heat.

garlic-knots-method-9 garlic-knots-method-10

10 Brush cooked knots with garlic parsley butter mixture: When the knots are done, take out of the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Paint with the garlic-butter-parsley mixture and serve. These are best warm, but are good at room temperature, too.

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  • Evelyn K

    I made these today and I will make them again!!!! They are to die for!!!! Thank you for sharing the recipe! Amazing!


  • Lena

    Turned out great! I used store bought dough to save time. Thank you for satisfying my garlic knot craving!!!

  • JDS

    The dough is not at all like pizza dough. Dry and flakey. No body or chew to it. I made 2 separate batches and both were the same. Very disappointing.


    • Summer Miller

      Hi, JDS! I’m sorry the dough wasn’t working for you. Sometimes that happens with dough recipes due to discrepancies in scooping flour. Weighing the flour provides the most accurate flour to moisture ratio. If you don’t weigh the flour it’s best to spoon it into your measuring cup rather than scoop it out of the flour bag or canister. I hope that helps.

  • Laurie


  • Fran

    I’d like to make these ahead of time for company. Do you recommend making them a day ahead and warming them up?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Fran! Yes, you can make them a day ahead and warm them up in the oven. You can also freeze them for about a month and then warm in the oven. I’d wait to add the garlic butter parsley glaze until rewarming them. Enjoy!

  • NerdyChef

    My dough is always extremely dry to the point of not being able to knead the dough into the softball that is pictured. All ingredients are weighed and I’m an experienced baker.


    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Nerdy Chef, I recently re-tested (several times) and updated this recipe just to get the measurements right, given how flour measurements can so drastically vary depending on how you measure. My only guess about what might be happening is that your 3/4 cup measure for the water is different than mine. Baking recipes, while more precise than non-baking recipes, are still open to having to make adjustments given the environment. So many things can affect the dough — ambient humidity, brand of flour used, type of flour used (bread flour vs all purpose), measuring cups. Sometimes you have to make adjustments. In this case, I would have added more water, a teaspoon at a time, until the dough was the right consistency.

    • Kaye

      I hear ya! I was super excited about this recipe but whoa. The dough was just not right. I’ll try one more time at some point and take the tips but wowzwers. No good.

  • Danielle

    When I made my dough even though I used your recipe it came out quite dry? And not moist like your photo. Did I do something wrong

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Danielle, did you weigh the flour? Too much flour is one possible culprit. Or perhaps your oven runs hot or you baked them on a dark pan, which would bake them faster. I would try using a little less flour or baking them in less time in the future.

  • Sheri

    Since I found this recipe a few years ago I have never looked back! I use the dough cycle in my bread machine because I am lazy and the results never fail me! Everyone who has ever tried these when I make them raves about them! Tough to get good garlic knots where I live…and honestly…the ones I make at home are just better. I miss NY style pizzerias. Finding this recipe helps make up for that!


  • Jasmine

    Flavor is great, but I keep having the problem of the knots not rising enough for the second rise before baking. Why does this happen? They rise a bit initially and then look kinda flat instead of how plump the pictures look

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Jasmine, great question! So many things could account for this. It might be your yeast is old. It might be that you are letting the dough rise too long in the first rise. It might be that your warm spot for rising the dough is too warm. It might be that you need to let the dough sit longer in the second rise.

  • dakotarorie

    I didn’t taste garlic at all next time put it inside


  • Rachael

    This recipe is delicious, what it fails to mention (for inexperienced bakers) do not add all the flour at once, start with 1 3/4 cup then add flour until as you knead the dough (makes it easier if your doing it by hand). Once it pulls away from the bowl easily, leaving nothing behind, then cover with plastic wrap or towel set in warm area and let rise. This action can take anywhere from 30-90 minutes to double in size. It is dependent of how warm the area is.

  • Paul

    Why not put more sugar? It will make it rise faster

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Paul! Sure, you can add some extra sugar if you like, though your rolls will taste sweeter. Also be careful because too much sugar can actually slow down the rise rather than enhance it. For a faster rise, I generally prefer using Instant Yeast. Enjoy!

  • Ria

    Can’t wait to try it! How would you adjust it to gluten free flour?

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Ria, I don’t know how gluten-free flours work with yeasted bread recipes. You might try doing a Google search.

    • Paul

      No it won’t. What the bread makes bread is gluten network in which yeast rises to make fluffy, airy texture.

  • Szilvia

    One word: Amazing!!! Thank you so much for the recipe I used fresh yeast wow it was so good!!! I will make this for my daughter’s birthday party and I’m sure that it will be a hit!


  • Bev Ross

    I love garlic knots. These are exceptional. But I can’t use a whole batch of them. Can I freeze them before or after baking? I live alone and only want a few for me. But like more when I have company for dinner, usually about 4 – 5 people, no more.


    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Bev! Emma here, managing editor. You can freeze it either way! You can freeze the excess dough after it’s risen (at the point where you’d otherwise start shaping the knots) — just shape it into a loose ball, rub the outside with a little olive oil and freeze it in zip-top freezer bags for up to three months. Allow to thaw in the fridge before shaping and baking.

      If you want to freeze after baking, let the rolls cool completely and do NOT brush with the garlic butter. When ready to serve, warm the frozen rolls in a 300F oven until warmed through and brush with butter after they come out of the oven.

      Hope this helps!

      • Lisa S.

        One more question about freeze ahead options–can I freeze them after I shape them but before they are baked?

  • varsha

    They came out really good. But the recipe made only 18 knots.


  • Albert Bevia

    Made these with my own homemade dough recipe, the knots where a hit! what really made these was the garlic butter….yum


  • Deborah

    “Working with one piece at a time, flatten into a rough rectangle about 5 inches long 1/2 inch thick.” Then: “slice the dough into strips of about 1 inch wide by 5 inches long.” So….wouldn’t this actually be 5″ x 5″ square? That is easier to understand than a “rough” rectangle. Also, the picture where the strips are being cut is very confusing. It clearly shows more than 5 strips in the photo, which made me think it was a pic of the second cut (cut in half) leaving ten 5″ long ropes. This should be edited to show that “in half” is 10 1″ x 2 1/2″ strips.

    Great taste, recipe wording needs some help.


    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Deborah, I reworked the recipe and photos so the instructions should be more straightforward. Hope that helps!

  • Charles

    Used my sourdough pizza dough to make these and they were awesome! Thanks.

  • Erin Kelkar

    Thanks for the recipe. I made knots last night and they were a hit with my family.


  • Bren

    You rock! As a Jersey native living out West I’ve been craving the little 25 cent garlic balls our local pizza place had for ages. Spot on!


  • Keeley Branham

    Made these and they turned out absolutely awesome! Im an 18 year old bread and dough making finatic so I love trying new recipes. i used anover night fridge rise dough that only took a couple mins to whip up. Thanks for sharing!


  • Nadie

    These are delicious! My one suggestion though, is to use less parsley in the topping. It is overpowering to the whole thing.

  • Teresa Pita

    I made this garlic knobs ,all my friend loved them and I did too!! Deliciosos!!


  • Maria

    I just made these but, because I’m a glutton, I stuffed some of them with grated cheese and some smoked turkey, which I had on hand. Both versions were good. So good. Thank you for this!

  • Paul

    So i just stumbled apon this lovely recipe and decided that ill make it im 15 and i followed all the steps and i did it alone and i know im need supervision from an adult but my mom trusted me enough to do it on my own and they turned out very good and i loved how hood they were a must have kept recipe

  • sm

    Just came across this heavenly looking recipe.. Do you think it will be fine to do the recipe times 4 or5? Or is it better to do two separate double batches? Gono a be a big party;)

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi sm, I recommend doing two batches and doubling the recipe rather than quadrupling it.

  • James

    Mine came out really hard on the outside. Any ideas why? I used all-purpose flour and also did not let them rise for the full 90 mins each time. I let the dough rise for about 75 mins. Once I made them into knots, I only let them rise for about 15 mins. Could that be the problem? Sorry for the ignorance, I’ve never attempted these before :)

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi James, that second rise is important. You know it’s ready to go in the oven when you push your fingertip into the dough and the indentation stays, it doesn’t fill in quickly. Remember, the rise is the dough filling with pockets of air. So if you don’t give enough time for the second rise, those air bubbles haven’t had enough time to develop properly.

  • Cheryl

    These were perfect! I’m glad that I doubled the recipe because they went fast. The rolls look a lot more complicated to make than they were. In efforts to be a little healthier, I halved the amount of butter sauce. They still had the perfect amount of salt, garlic and butter.


  • Michele

    Can you freeze AFTER you shape & knot them right away or should you knot after first rise without shaping them. I was thinking I could knot them and get them all ready freeze them and just pull them out as needed, defrost and let rise and then bake them? Have you tried or have any input that could be helpful when it comes to freezing? Thank You!

  • Andrea

    I’ve made these and they are delicious! Only thing different I do is add is shred Parmesan cheese on top after all finished.
    My 21 year old son was/ is a very picky kid. He was scared to taste anything I made, I dunno why??? lol He devoured these! Then when he came to do laundry asked me to make more. This kid never I mean NEVER has asked me to make him anything for him. Ty for the recipe !!

  • Kate

    Love love love this recipe. Made it so many times. I’m lazy (and a little impatient) so I don’t let them rise again after knotting them… but they still turn out perfect and soft. I also brush them with the garlic before I cook them since I prefer my garlic a little more cooked. Made them again today and brushed them with sweet chili sauce instead, was just as good!


  • adlinewrites

    I made these today and they turned out great!! It’s my first time making bread & it worked out perfectly :) Thanks so much!


  • Abby

    OMG!!! These are soooo good! I tripled the recipe because I was taking them to a cast party from my drama class. They disappeared faster than the pizza!

    I am definitely making this again and saving the recipe…. I could seriously eat 20 of them….


  • Rhonda Taylor

    Just so you know they are apparently loved in Tennessee also. I made a batch and watched them disappear in under five minutes. Oh And just for experimental purposes, I brushed 4 of the with melted butter cinnamon sugar mix for my daughter. Also delicious.
    I know garlic knots don’t necessarily go with Three Teacup chicken, but we are a bread loving family so I served them together anyway . Kid approved.


  • Izreen

    I’m just wondering, have you tried freezing the dough? I hate to waste as well, and it would be great if you could provide a step-by-step instructions on how to freeze the dough. Thanks!

    I’ve never frozen this particular dough, but I’ve had good success freezing other doughs by wrapping them tightly in plastic wrap, then in another layer of foil. ~Hank

  • Mom24

    I made these tonight. Awesome! I made the dough in the morning, let it rise, then stuck it in the fridge until afternoon. Then, I got it out, patted it into the rectangle and proceeded. For topping I used the garlic and butter and sprinkled on KAF Tuscan salt. Very big hit. I was amazed at how crispy outside and tender and airy inside they were.

  • Lois

    Woud love to try this recipe, it looks scrumptous. Can the dough be made in a bread machine, if so, do I still make it rise before baking. Thanks

    I suppose you could make the dough in a bread machine. I have never used one before, though. And yes, the dough needs to rise twice before baking, first time on its own, the second time once you’ve rolled out the dough and tied it in knots. ~Hank

    • Angela

      Yes, it can be. I used it with success. Mmmmm!

  • Cyndy Norton

    I am single and hate to waste…. can these be frozen?? Thanks, in advance Hank.

    I doubt it. What I would do is make a batch of dough, then cut it in half and bake only a few knots at a time. Better to freeze unbaked dough than finished garlic knots. ~Hank

  • Bella

    For those that made mention of the extra fermentation for flavor: Just so that I’m clear on the first rise, do you let the dough rise *before* putting it in the fridge? Or do you let the dough rise *in the fridge*?

    I will often make the dough, wrap it and let it rise overnight in the fridge. Then you roll it out, shape it and let it rise the second time at warm room temperature. ~Hank

  • Janis

    I am new to the world of yeast and dough and took these on. So glad I did! Very easy and yummy! Bye bye frozen garlic bread! Because I did use AP flour I used 2 1/4 tsp of yeast and they came out perfect not to crunchy, just right. Thank you for sharing this!

  • CP

    These were so good! I also made a batch topped with cinnamon & sugar.

  • Sam

    These are pretty good, but next time I’ll make them without salt in the topping. I think they will be better with just garlic, unsalted butter and parsley.

  • Sarah

    I am lazy when I am making garlic bread and end up making the dough into balls and stuffing them with fresh garlic and butter. Yours look really good!

  • Matthew Hyner

    Awsome… might want to keep in mind, throw the dough in the fridge for a few days to allow for the flavor to develop. Said it yourself, the dough is usually ready to ferment with the real thing :) Still have some from my last pizza making debacle, never thought to make these with it. Will have to once I get a new stone!

  • Susan

    I made these yesterday as a test run for the weekend football game playoffs as a snack. First, they didn’t take as long to rise as the recipe states; they took only about 40 minutes each rise. I did use rapid rise yeast (and the method recommended for using it) but that shouldn’t make that much difference..and I was glad it rose so quickly! They were wonderful. I think I will make the dough through the first rise Saturday night then wrap and refrigerate it to shape and bake on Sunday. I think a little fermentation would add yet another level of flavor to them. Excellent and easy recipe that I will use again. Thanks, Hank!


  • Amy

    Where in the oven do you need to bake these? I’ve read to bake pizza high, but I wonder if these would not cook as evenly if they are high up? And, what do you think about cooking stuff like this with convection? Thanks.

    I baked them in the middle. As for convection, no idea. Sorry! I don’t cook with a convection oven. ~Hank

  • Karen Rr

    I’ve never seen these here in Canada; we tend to have a dough ball in the center of the pizza to help hold the pizza box lid from sticking to the toppings. Since it’s one little ball, there tends to be fights of who gets it…

    These look good, and I’m thinking they would be great with a spaghetti dinner, instead of garlic bread.

  • Marsha

    Wow!!! I lived in NJ for several years and remember that garlic knots and sauce was the best thing in the world. We used to live above a pizza place in Bayonne, NJ and I would go down at lunchtime on a Saturday and get two orders of knots and sauce. We would chase them down with cheap Chianti…awww cheap simple food. Thanks for the trip down memory lane! I will be making these this weekend…and like you said a triple batch!

  • barb polo

    I wondered which town in NJ you are from? Almost every other town in northern Jersey has/had a Ferraro’s where you could get garlic knots. We grew up in West New York, NJ in Hudson County along the Palisades across from Manhatten. barb

    I grew up in Westfield, in Union County. ~Hank

  • V

    Ferraro’s in Westfield? These look great, and will be a great way to tide myself over until they finish rebuilding the restaurant (it burned down several months ago) :(

    Yep, Ferraro’s in Westfield! And I heard about that fire. Lots of controversy, apparently. I went to high school with Vinnie Ferraro. ~Hank

  • kathy

    Growing up on Long Island, we always walked over to the pizza parlor and had a slice and some garlic knots. No pizza place would be without it. Now living in the Syracuse Ny area, pizza places don’t have knots but they better have wings and a bunch of them! Maybe that could be your next recipe??

    Hey Kathy, we got your wings for ya, right here. ;-) ~Hank

  • Anna @ the shady pine

    The knots look so adorable and no doubt very moorish!

    These would be devoured in seconds at my place.

    Mine, too! It requires an act of iron will to eat just one or two… ~Hank

  • Joe

    If using store bought pizza dough, do I have to let it rise after making the knots? Thanks!

    Yes. ~Hank

  • Lynda

    Using a sharp knife, slice the dough into strips of about 1 inch wide by 5 inches long. Cut these strips in half. Question: Cut strips in half lengthwise to make 1/2 inch by 5 inches or widthwise to make 1 inch by 2-1/2 inches? Thnx in advance.

    You want the final strips of dough to be about 1 inch wide by 2 1/2 inches long. If you don’t cut the initial 5-inch-long strip, the garlic knot will be too big — certainly fine to eat, but larger than the traditional knot. ~Hank

  • Lulu

    As a born and bred New Yorker, I can say for certain that no visit to a pizza place is complete without a side order of garlic knots wrapped in aluminum foil and a pile of napkins to wipe the garlicky oil off your fingers and chin.
    I also remember stopping by the corner pizza place, Giulia’s Pizza in Queens, and picking up a half-dozen knots to enjoy as an after-school snack while I watched General Hospital. Haha. I haven’t thought about that in years.

    Looks like I’m about to break my New Year’s resolution, 19 days in. Thanks for the recipe and for bringing up some good old memories!

  • Julie

    I grew up in South Jersey and these yummy little guys are a taste of childhood. When I make pizza now and somehow have extra dough, I tend to fry plain knots and roll them in sugar (powdered or granulated with cinnamon), another thing that NJ pizzerias did – I believe they were called zeppoli. Thanks for the recipe and post – I’ll have to make these soon, since I’m living far from home!

  • Becki's Whole Life

    We have a lot of Italian restaurants/pizzerias down here in NC that make these knots and you are right they do prove some legitimacy and authenticity of the restaurant. Since we have so many transplants from the north (like myself) down here it’s actually pretty common to see these. The fresh garlicky flavor is key..real garlic makes all of the difference along with some fresh herbs. Soooo good!