Types of Italian Bread
By: Liz Flynn
Like in many countries, bread is one of the staple foods in the Italian diet. It is served with fillings, as an accompaniment to meals or used to soak up oils, gravy or sauces. The choice of bread in Italy extends far beyond white or brown and a loaf or a bread roll. There is a vast choice of bread to choose from. Here is a list of 20 of the most common breads you will find in Italy.
This bread is cooked hard in a ring and will last for weeks.
This is a flattened bread that is often used for sandwiches.
Ciambella is typically found in bakeries in Basilicata and Puglia. It is crispy on the outside and soft in the center. It is often cooked in a ring.
Cornettoes are similar to French croissants and are eaten for breakfast. They are a little sweeter than croissants and it is traditional to fill them with jam and cream.
Filone di Renella
Filone is a classic white loaf from Rome and Renella is a famous bakery there. It is sometimes called pane Napoletana.
The regions where this bread is most commonly found are Basilicata, Campania and Puglia. It is sliced, dry bread that is usually eaten with olive oil and tomatoes. If you order this bread in Naples, it is often topped with seafood.
Focaccia al Pomodoro
Usually found in Basilicata and Puglia, this is a thick-crusted bread with thyme and tomato sauce added to the top.
Although this bread is flattened like pizza, it resembles bread more closely. It has a soft crust and sweet flavour.
A pagnotta is a large round loaf.
A bread made with white flour that has a thin crust and a dense middle.
Pane col Seme di Finocchio
Fennel seeds are added to this bread that is popular in Puglia.
Pane con le Olive
whole wheat bread rolls with olives added.
Pane di Genzano
It has a hard, almost burnt crust and a soft center. It originates from Genzano near Rome.
Pane di Lariano
A bread that comes from a town called Lariano, just south of Rome. It I made using whole wheat flour.
Pane di Matera
Pane di Matera is made from semolina flour and this gives it a yellow appearance.
Pane di Matera, La Corna
This is another bread made using semolina flour so it is also yellow. Another ingredient is mother yeast starter and this keeps the bread fresh for over a week.
Pane di Segale
This rye bread originates from the Alto-Adige region and comes in either loaves or rolls.
From the town of Laterza, this bread is cooked into a leaf shape and has a soft center but firm crust.
Loaves topped with sesame seeds. In the United States, these loaves are referred to as Italian loaves.
This is a type of flat bread that is similar to a pizza base but usually baked square. It is sometimes filled or used to make sandwiches. It is equally delicious eaten on its own.
Pizza Rustica with Prosciutto Cotto
Cheese and ham are added to the center of this bread.
A heavy and sweet rye bread.
Most commonly found in Rome, these hollow rolls are used for sandwiches.
Schuttelbrot - Pane di Sagale Croccante
Since Alto-Adige only became part of Italy after the first world war, many of the foods in this region are influenced by Austrian and German cuisine. This dry and crispy rye bread is a good example of this.
This is an unusual bread that has white wine and fennel seeds added. It is also cooked in an unusual way as it is boiled before baking until golden.
Although his bread originates from Germany and Austria, it is a traditional bread in Alto-Adige due to the region’s links with these countries.