• 2½ cups warm water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 6 cups bread flour
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar or jack cheese, grated (more if you love cheese!)
  • ½ cup fresh Asiago or Parmesan cheese, grated (or a "3 Italian" type cheese mixture)
  • Garlic Salt
  • Cornmeal
  • Cooking spray
  1. In a large mixing bowl, stir sugar into warm water and stir in the yeast. Let sit until bubbly (about 5 minutes). Add 5 cups of flour, the olive oil, and the salt.
  2. Beat with electric mixer, using paddles, until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 5-6 minutes.
  3. If you prefer to knead by hand, put the remaining cup of flour on the board and knead for 7-8 minutes. If you have a sturdy stand mixer and prefer to let the machine do the hard work, switch to your dough hook, add the remaining flour and let it knead for 5 minutes. Your finished dough should be smooth and elastic.
  4. Place the dough into a large greased bowl. Turn to coat. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about an hour.
  5. Punch down the dough, turn it over, and let it rise again until doubled (about an hour and a half.)
  6. Heat oven to 450 F.
  7. Sprinkle 2 cookie sheets with cornmeal and set aside.
  8. Punch down the dough. Working with half of the dough at a time, place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll into a rectangle, keeping it fairly more than ⅓ inch thick, and about 6 inches wide. Sprinkle with half of each type of cheese. Lightly shake garlic salt over the top of the cheese. Using the rolling pin, gently roll the cheese and salt into the surface of the dough.
  9. With a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut dough into 1inch strips.
  10. For soft bread sticks, arrange the strips of dough on the cookie sheet, keeping them about ½ inch apart. (They will touch each other when they rise, but are easy to pull apart after baking.)
  11. For crusty bread sticks, twist the dough as shown in the photograph below. They'll stretch a little as you twist, so they'll turn out longer than 6 inches.
  12. Allow the bread sticks to rest for 15 minutes. Spray with an oil spray (I used a canola spray), sprinkle with any leftover cheese, and bake 10-12 minutes for soft sticks, 12-14 for crusty sticks.
  13. Remove from pan and cool on rack. (If you really want to go for it, you can brush them with butter and sprinkle them with coarse salt at this point!)
  14. While the first batch is cooling, start rolling out the second half.
Recipe by The Rowdy Baker at