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Subway Italian Herb & Cheese Bread: Copycat Recipe

I’m excited to share how I made this Italian herb and cheese bread Subway recipe taste so much like the real thing!

italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

If you’ve ever been to Subway, then you know that they have a huge selection of bread to choose from, but the best one by far is the Italian herb and cheese bread! Be sure to read the full blog post to learn all the tricks to make this taste just like the real thing!

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If you like this recipe then be sure to check out some of my other copycat recipes.

What are the ingredients in Subway Italian herb & cheese bread?

Lately, there’s been a bit of an uproar about the ingredients in Subway’s Italian herb and cheese bread! Seems like the recipe packs in so much sugar that some folks are calling it “unhealthy”!

I’ll be adding quite a bit of sugar to this recipe to really nail that copycat flavor, but if you want to cut back, you can reduce the sugar by up to half and still end up with delicious copycat Italian herb and cheese bread.

italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

Start this bread the night before

 Just a heads up, this bread recipe requires a little planning – you’ll want to kick things off the day before you plan to bake it. Don’t worry, though, the extra time is worth it for the amazing flavor and texture you’ll get in the end!

How do they make bread at Subway?

Subway makes their bread by defrosting frozen loaves, adding the aromatic Italian seasoning and blended cheese toppings, and letting them proof until they have doubled in size before baking. 

 For this copycat recipe, we’ll start with fresh bread dough and top it with a copycat version of their seasoning and cheese blend consisting of:

  • parmesan cheese
  • Monterey jack cheese
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Garlic powder
  • Subway Italian herbs
italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

The full recipe can be found on the recipe card at the bottom of this post. 

What you’ll need to make soft subway-style bread at home

To make the Italian herb and cheese Subway bread recipe, you’ll need the following:

  • Stand mixer with a dough hook attachment (this is a sticky dough that’s hard to knead by hand)
  • Large mixing bowl for proofing the dough
  • Silicone bread mold for getting the perfect shape
  • Baking sheet for baking the bread
  • Plastic wrap or tea towel for covering the dough while it rises

These items will help you bake the delicious Italian herb and cheese bread just like Subway’s! 

italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

Tips for making the best soft subway-style bread

Start the night before: Create a sponge by mixing flour, water, and yeast in a bowl. Allow this mixture to sit at room temperature overnight. 

Use a stand mixer and a dough hook: To make sure the dough reaches the desired smooth and elastic consistency, I highly recommend using a stand mixer rather than attempting to knead it by hand. 

Top of each loaf with cheese blend before proofing: Before letting the dough rise, add the toppings to each piece of dough. First roll the dough on a damp paper towel , then roll the dough in the herb and cheese mix. 

italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

Be sure to check out the video in the recipe card to see how it’s done!

 Italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe

Subway-style Italian Herb & Cheese Bread

This delicious Italian herb and cheese bread subway recipe is a perfect copycat of the original.
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 footlong loaves

Equipment

Ingredients
  

Poolish Starter

  • 1/3 cup Water, lukewarm 66g
  • 1/2 cup Bread Flour 66g
  • 1/8 Tsp Yeast, active dry or instant

Bread Dough

  • 3 cups Bread Flour 360g
  • 1 cup Water,lukewarm 234g
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. Sugar, divided 36g
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Salt 10g
  • 2 1/4 tsp Yeast, 1 pack active dry or instant 7g
  • 2 Tbsp Vegetable oil 18g

Herb and Cheese Topping

  • 1/4 cup Shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozarella cheese
  • 1 Tbsp Grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning herb blend

Instructions
 

Starter Instructions

  • In a mixing bowl, combine 1/3 cup of water (or weigh out 66 grams) with 1/2 cup of bread flour (or weigh out 66 grams). Sprinkle in 1/8 teaspoon of yeast.
  • Stir the mixture until well combined and there are no lumps. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let the starter rest at room temperature overnight or for at least 8-12 hours.

Bread Dough Instructions

  • In a small bowl, combine a cup of warm water with the active dry yeast and 1 Tbsp. of sugar. Let it sit for 5 minutes until it becomes frothy. While you are waiting, measure the flour, salt, and oil and set aside.
  • Combine the dry ingredients and the yeast mixture along with the poolish starter, remaining sugar, and oil, in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix with the dough hook attachment until they come together into a rough dough. 3 minutes on low speed. There should be no dry ingredients remaining on the bottom of the bowl. Continue to knead until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. About 8 minutes. (the dough may still be a little sticky at this point, but resist the urge to add more flour)
  • Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and let it rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1-2 hours
  •  Punch down the risen dough and divide it.  To do this, lightly flour your work surface and divide the dough into 4 equal pieces of dough. If you are using a food scale each piece should weigh about 6.5 ounces.
  • Shape the dough into baguette shapes and top them with the herb and cheese topping. To do this, place a moist paper towel on one plate, and the herb and cheese mixture on another plate. With each baguette, roll it on the paper towel, then on the herb and cheese mixture.
  • After the topping has been added, place them in the Silicone Bread Mold, or a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover the shaped dough with a kitchen towel and let it rise again until doubled in size, about 30-45 minutes.
  •  Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F (190°C). Once the dough has risen, bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving.

Notes

This delicious bread is best enjoyed the same day it's baked for optimal freshness. However, if you find yourself with extras, store them in an airtight container or a sealed ziplock bag to maintain moisture and prevent staling.
For longer-term storage, you can freeze the dough. To do so, first, par-bake it until the bread is cooked in the middle but not brown. Then, allow it to cool completely before transferring to a freezer-safe container or bag.
When you're ready to enjoy it, simply finish baking it in the oven until golden brown and heated through. This method preserves the freshness and flavor of the bread for future enjoyment.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

This recipe yields soft and slightly sweet Subway-style sandwich bread, perfect for your favorite sandwich fillings. Remember how easy it is to make fresh homemade bread the next time you crave Subway!

Recipe Rating




Luke

Wednesday 10th of April 2024

Am I just blind? I can't seem to see the video mentioned in: "Be sure to check out the video in the recipe card to see how it’s done!" just above the recipe.

thanks.

Jacqui

Saturday 2nd of March 2024

When do you add the starter or do you have a choice of fresh yeast or using the starter yeast??

Better Baker

Wednesday 6th of March 2024

Hi Jacqui, you add the starter in step 2 with all fo the other ingredients. You need to use the starter and the yeast. (Its not like sourdough that replaces yeast) Best of luck with your baking!

Better Baker

Sunday 3rd of March 2024

Add the starter when you add the water and yeast mixture. Sorry to leave out that important step. I've updated the recipe.