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I'm Kind Of Obsessed With This 90-Minute Olive Garden Breadsticks Recipe

Unlimited breadsticks in my own home!!!

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You know how when you eat an Olive Garden breadstick or 12, you're like, "Wow, I never knew the meaning of family until this exact moment?"

NBC / Via giphy.com

Same. They're perfectly soft and chewy with a buttery, garlicky finish that's making my mouth water as we speak. It's a recipe for addiction — and for getting full before your meal even reaches the damn table. I know this word gets thrown around a lot these days, but those breadsticks are truly iconic.

Visiting the overcrowded Olive Garden in NYC's Times Square would be a devastating blow to my overall well-being, so I decided to see if there were any good copycat recipes for those famous b-sticks I could make at home, safe from tourists who are ravenous after a trip to the M&M store.

NBC / Via giphy.com

I'm honestly shaking just thinking about the Times Square location, where there was once an actual knife fight.

When I saw this Genius Kitchen recipe that's ready in 31 minutes (plus 45 minutes of ~dough resting~), I was like, "Sounds fake, but OK" and immediately committed to investigating this dupe that was BIG if true.

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Not only is that a super-manageable amount of time, but also I already had all of the ingredients at home, a major plus. All I needed was yeast, all-purpose flour, unsalted butter, sugar, salt, garlic powder, and oregano.

Following the recipe was pretty straightforward — let the yeast get foamy in water, combine the ingredients, mix it into a slightly sticky dough, knead.

Tom Vellner / BuzzFeed

Even someone new to bread-baking like myself could handle the instructions. My only knowledge of bread-baking really comes from The Great British Baking Show, and yes, I narrated the entire process as if I were one of the nervous yet cheeky contestants. My partner definitely loved my incessant commentary, like, "This dough seems a bit too sticky, but time is really tight, so I must press on."

The part I wasn't as familiar with was forming the dough into uniform breadstick shapes and letting them rest on baking sheets for 45 minutes.

Tom Vellner / BuzzFeed

It took closer to an hour for them to double in size, and for whatever reason, I felt like I had to sit by them the entire time, like I was a bird incubating its eggs. (Am I ready to be a dad??)

Before they go in the oven, you brush them with butter and kosher salt, and then, while they're baking, you put together a lil' mix of garlic powder, oregano, and salt to sprinkle on them after they're done.

The recipe says the bake time is 15 minutes at 400 degrees, but I found that 14 was ideal for my smaller oven to give the breadsticks that paler, slightly golden Olive Garden color. One minute makes a difference, y'all.

So, did these breadsticks turn out to be a believable dupe for Olive Garden's? As the Italians say, "Buon giorno!" That's all I really know in Italian, but yes! They were pretty damn close!

Tom Vellner / BuzzFeed

There were a couple of differences. First of all: I am man, not machine. I wasn't able to shape all of my breadsticks into that perfect Olive Garden ~lewk~, so some were a lil' wonkier and wavier than others. But they were similar enough, and their soft and chewy interior looked spot-on.

Second, don't be afraid to go big with the butter and topping! I pulled back a little on those because I was afraid the b-sticks would be too greasy or pungent, but I actually think they could've been a bit more buttery (you know how Olive Garden's always leave your fingers a little shiny?) and used a touch more flavor. Really lather on that melted butter and give 'em a solid pinch of garlic powder and oregano. When those flavors came through, I was instantly reminded of the hundreds (yikes?) of Olive Garden breadsticks I consumed growing up.

With this recipe, all you need is a giant bowl of salad and a waiter named Kevin with questionable facial hair and BOOM, you'll have an Olive Garden right in your own home.

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Buon appetito! (OK, OK, I know more than one phrase in Italian.)

I'll be testing lots of great dupes in the coming weeks. Let me know your favorites in the comments! 👀