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27 Focaccia Toppings {Easy & Delicious}

27 Focaccia Toppings {Easy & Delicious}

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Are you looking for the best focaccia toppings you can use with your favorite focaccia recipe?

Here you’ll find over 25 focaccia topping ideas: from sweet to savory, from 1 ingredient to more filling pizza style variations and everything in between.

focaccia topping with arugula and tomatoes

Focaccia is a type of flatbread that is widespread throughout Italy. It is made from a dough of flour, water, salt, and yeast, coated with extra-virgin olive oil, and then baked in the oven. 

If you say “focaccia” to an Italian, he/she’ll probably think of those made in Genoa (focaccia genovese) or Bari (focaccia barese). However, almost every region has its own variation.

These variants all have the same ingredients, but they may have different ratios of those ingredients, different leavening process, and baking times. Sometimes focaccias are also distinguished by particular dimensions.

The most visible difference, however, is in the topping (or lack of it). For this reason, all types have the same name.

Sometimes it is changed to include the place of origin or the ingredients of the topping (e.g.: “focaccia messinese” or “focaccia with onions”).

Like any form of bread, focaccia pairs well with almost anything.

As a result, there are many focaccia toppings. Some are canonized according to traditional recipes, and others are simply particularly popular food pairings. 

Below you’ll find the most popular focaccia breads and toppings.

They pair perfectly with this Liguruian Focaccia base also known as focaccia genovese.

focaccia genoese
Simple Ligurian Focaccia

Of course you can use any of the suggested topping with your favorite focaccia base.

Simple 1-Ingredient Toppings 

Focaccia is great even without any topping. If you eat it as it is straight out of the oven, it’s already a great snack. However, if you want to add some flavor, there are a few ingredients you can add to the top of your focaccia dough right before baking it. 

A few ideas to make simple focaccia with:

  • sliced onions
  • cherry tomatoes
  • green olives
  • rosemary or other dried herbs

Top each of these toppings you need to top focaccia base before setting it for its final rise.

For version with olives, don’t forget to pit them.
Cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and let leaven, then bake at 430F or 220C for 15-20 minutes.

My recent favorite is what I call Focaccia Bruschettata or Focaccia Bruschetta Style.

focaccia alla bruschetta style - with diced tomatoes and basil

All you need is to bake basic focaccia with coarse see salt and once it has cooled top with with diced cherry tomatoes (salted and liquid drained) extra virgin olive oil and basil leaves – as in classic tomato bruschetta.

So simple but incredibly fresh and delicious.

Just perfect for the summer!

Speaking of summer and bruschetta try also:

Bruschetta with Mozzarella & Grilled Peaches

Bruschetta with Muchrooms & Fresh Cherry Tomatoes

Traditional Focaccia Toppings

Focaccia Genoese is probably the most famous focaccia in Italy and all around the world.

As name suggests, it comes from the town of Genoa in Liguria region.

It is made by coating the top of the dough with salamoia  – a brine consisting of water and oil – and topped with sea salt flakes before baking. 

This gives it a golden color and makes it especially soft and flavorful. 

No topping is strictly required, but at local bakeries you’ll often find it topped with?

  • Mortadella and mozzarella cut into slices;
  • Any kind of sausages
  • Olives or cherry tomatoes pressed into the dough before baking
  • Spreadable cheese and herbs

Typical Italian Focaccia Types

Focaccia genovese is not the only one you should try. Below are some typical focaccias from various regions of Italy that you can take inspiration from for your next focaccia topping. 

Focaccia Barese

This focaccia is at the core of a competition between the city of Bari and the province of Altamura, which are fighting over its PGI denomination. Because of this, it is also known as focaccia pugliese. 

To make its traditional topping, all you have to do is to wait until the dough has risen. Then press some cherry tomatoes cut in half onto its surface. Add a little salt, oregano, and some extra virgin olive oil, then bake at 220°C (430°F) for about 30 minutes. 

Sfincione Palermitano

Sfincione palermitano is must-try street food from Palermo.

This focaccia is topped with the typical flavors of Sicily: onions, tomatoes, breadcrumbs, anchovies, oregano, pecorino cheese, and (most importantly) caciocavallo cheese.

To make the traditional topping for sfincione palermitano, start by cooking sliced onion in an emulsion of oil and water for 10 minutes. After that, add the tomato sauce and cook for 30 minutes, seasoning with salt and pepper. 

Set the sauce aside and, while it cools, place the focaccia dough in a baking dish, grease your fingers with oil and flatten it to give it an even appearance. Let it rise for 30 minutes, then spread the grated pecorino, caciocavallo, and anchovy fillets over it. Finally pour over the tomato sauce, sprinkle with toasted breadcrumbs, and bake for 50 minutes in the oven at 200 ° C. 

Focaccia from Messina

This is another super flavorful Sicilian focaccia made with local ingredients. As with the sfincione parlermitano, its topping includes anchovies and local cheeses. The process, however, is a little different. 

First, you have to cut the anchovies into small pieces and press them on the surface of the focaccia dough. After that, cover with a layer of tuma cheese, escarole, and tomatoes. Finally, add salt, pepper, and oregano, then bake at 180°C for 20 minutes.

Schiacciata all’uva – Grape Focaccia

focaccia with grapes
Recipe & Photo Credit: Imapastando A Quattro Mani

Finally, we are moving to Tuscany for a special fall focaccia.

To make the topping for this one, you need to wash some grapes, mix them with some sugar and fennel seeds in a bowl, and then leave them to rest for an hour and finally pour everything on the top of the focaccia.

Let the dough rise for another ten minutes, and then bake at 430F or 220C for 12-14 minutes. 

Sweet Focaccias

Focaccia doesn’t have to be salty. In some regions, it is a traditional dessert. Here are two examples.

Fugàssa – Focaccia Veneta

Fugàssa (or fugassìn) is a sweet focaccia typical of the Veneto region. It is a very ancient Easter cake, and some believe it was already being prepared during the first Christian holidays. Its dough is made with: flour, butter, sugar, yeast, almonds, 5 eggs, Venetian flavors, and a small glass of grappa. The topping is simply made of a pile of sugar grains pressed on the dough before baking. 

Focaccia di Susa

This is a sweet focaccia from the Val di Susa (Susa Valley) in Piedmont. Its dough is made with eggs, butter, sugar, and yeast. Like fugàssa, this focaccia does not have an actual topping. You simply add sugar to its top before baking. Afterward, you can carve decorations on it according to the time of year: crosses, stars, but also horseshoes and doves.

27 Focaccia Toppings {Easy & Delicious}

Pizza-Style Focaccia Toppings

By now, you may have wondered: what is the difference between focaccia and pizza?

After all, they look pretty similar. The difference lies mainly in the baking method and usage.

Both focaccia and pizza use the dough made with flour, yeast, water, salt and oil, which goes through 2 different leavening processes. However, focaccia dough is less hydrated and crispier than pizza dough, and it usually spends the second leavening inside a baking dish. Pizza dough, on the other hand, spends the second rising on a floured working surface, covered with a cloth. Also, the leavening times are different.

Another difference lies in the temperature of the oven: as you may already have noticed, focaccia is baked at much lower temperatures than pizza.

Finally, there is also a difference in the way they are eaten: focaccia is never consumed in large quantities, and it is mostly used as a snack or as an appetizer. Pizza, on the other hand, can be a complete meal. 

One thing that doesn’t change though, are the toppings you can use for both. Despite the differences, what’s good on pizza is also good on focaccia. Let’s take a look at some ideas.

Margherita

The most classic Pizza Margherita can be easily turned into a focaccia topping. All you have to do is spread some tomato sauce over focaccia dough along with some mozzarella and chopped basil leaves, then bake at 230°C for 30 minutes. 

Marinara

If you can’t eat dairy or are on a vegan diet, remove the mozzarella from the topping described above and make a marinara. The recipe is the same. 

Capricciosa

Even capricciosa can turn into a great focaccia topping. Spread tomato sauce over the dough and bake for 15 minutes at 220°C. After that, add some prosciutto slices on top, along with mozzarella cubes, mushrooms, olives and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Finally, bake for another 15 minutes. 

Focaccia with Mortadella and Pistachio Pesto

focaccia with mortadella and pistacchio pesto
Recipe & Photo Credit: I pasticcini di Nina

This is a simple and fresh topping, perfect for a summer snack or as an appetizer during an outdoor lunch.

To make focaccia with this topping lay some slices of mozzarella on top of focaccia after taking it out of the oven and then add some pistachio pesto.

Take it to the next level by adding some fresh mozzarella cheese.

Alternatively, you can also add a little provolone cheese to the focaccia two minutes before taking it out of the oven. This way it will melt, giving your topping a creamy base. 

Feta Cheese, Cherry Tomatoes, and Arugula Pesto

focaccia with feta cheese, tomatoes and arugula
Recipe & Photo Credit: In Cucina Con Max & Andre

Here’s another tasty and simple idea for a super fresh focaccia that features pesto.

All you have to do is add the ingredients listed in the title to your focaccia after you take it out of the oven (let it cool for a few minutes before you do this!)

Here’s the recipe for Arugula Pesto {Pesto di Rucola}

Potatoes and Peppers

focaccia with peppers and potatoes
Recipe & Photo Credit: Dolcemente Inventando

To make this focaccia topping, you need to saute potatoes and peppers along with 5 tablespoons of oil, salt, pepper, oregano, and thyme.

After that, drop everything on top of your focaccia and bake it in the oven at 200°C (400°F) for about 30 minutes. Once out of the oven, cover everything with wet cloths for about 15 minutes. 

Focaccia with Cherry Tomatoes, Anchovies, and Olives

focaccia with cherry tomatoes, olives and anchovies
Recipe & Photo Credit: Prodotti Tipici Toscani

This focaccia does not require a long leavening time because it rises directly in the oven.

Place the dough in a baking dish, grease your fingers with olive oil and flatten it, then add some olives cut into rounds, chopped anchovies, and cherry tomatoes cut into wedges. If you wish, add a few capers and season with a pinch of oregano. Finally, add salt and bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

Peppers and Black Olives

focaccia with peppers and black olives
Recipe & Photo Credit: Carmencita Da Leccarsi Le DIta

This is another perfect choice for an outdoor aperitive or buffet and goes well with a glass of Pinot Grigio. The ingredients are: 1 red bell pepper, 1 yellow bell pepper, 2 tablespoons of black olives, 5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1 clove of garlic, and a pinch of fine salt. 

To prepare this topping you need to clean the peppers, remove the seeds and cut them into strips.

After that, add them to a wok with browned garlic and cook until soft. When the focaccia dough is ready to be baked, add the peppers you just cooked and the seedless black olives to its top, then bake for 40° at 200°C. 

Artichokes and Emmenthal Cheese

focaccia with artichokes and emmenthal cheese
Recipe & Photo Credit: Ristorante Dai Nonni

To make this focaccia topping, julienne cut some artichoke hearts and cook them in a pan until soft, adding salt and pepper to taste. Top your focaccia with artichokes along with cubes of Emmenthal cheese or Swiss cheese. Bake at 400F or 200°C for 30 minutes. 

Artichokes and Sausage

focaccia with artichokes and sausage
Recipe & Photo Credit: Dituttoedipiùperte Cucina

Sauté some julienne cut artichoke hearts along with some minced sausage for about 5 minutes. Use this topping for your focaccia along with some mozzarella cubes and grated parmesan cheese, sprinkle a pinch of salt on top, and then bake at 430F or 220°C for 15 minutes. 

Focaccia with Zucchini

focaccia with zucchini
Recipe & Photo Credit: Dulcilsss In Forno

This is a simple variation of Genovese focaccia. Put the dough in a baking dish and moisten its surface by spreading two tablespoons of water and 3 tablespoons of oil on it.

Use your fingertips to hollow out the typical focaccia dimples and spread some round-cut zucchini on top. Let it leaven for 1 hour in a turned-off oven (but keep the light on) or in a warm place. After that, remove the pan, preheat the oven to 220°C, and then bake the focaccia for 25 minutes. 

Zucchini, Ricotta and Bottarga

focaccia with zucchini ricotta and bottarga
Recipe & Photo Credit: Pizzeria Soffio di Grano

Follow the same recipe as with zucchini focaccia above. Once baked let it cool slightly and top with ricotta and grated bottarga.

Tuna and Zucchini

focaccia with zucchini and tuna
Recipe & Photo Credit: Ciocco Burro

Zucchini with tuna is another simple and flavorful focaccia topping.

All you have to do is sauté tuna and zucchini (as you could easily guess from the name) and add them to your focaccia. Start with zucchini and when they get soft, add drained tuna and season with some ground black pepper. Spread 2 teaspoons of extra-virgin olive oil on the focaccia dough, add the tuna and zucchini, an then bake at 400F or 200°C for 20 minutes or so. 

Tuna and Onions

Again, all you have to do is add tuna and onions to the surface of your focaccia and then bake at 400F or 200°C for 20 minutes. 

Focaccia Alla Parmigiana

focaccia alla parmigiana
Recipe & Photo Credit: Fatto In Casa Da Benedetta

This is a recipe by Italian cook-influencer Benedetta Rossi. To make this focaccia topping, you need to grill some eggplants and then arrange them on the top of your focaccia along with some tomato sauce, grated parmesan cheese, and fresh basil leaves. Bake at 180°C for 25 minutes. 

Tomatoes & Arugula

focaccia with tomatoes and arugula

This focaccia is very similar to my focaccia alla bruschetta. Simply make plain focaccia, once it has cooled top with diced tomatoes (drained), salt, extra virgin olive oil and fresh arugula leaves.

Red Onions and Dried Cherry Tomatoes

focaccia with onions and dried cherry tomatoes
Recipe & Photo Credit: Agriblea

Slice red onion and distribute it on top of the focaccia dough along with dried cherry tomatoes. Make an emulsion using 2 tablespoons of water, 2 tablespoons of oil, and salt to taste, then spread it over the dough to keep it soft while baking. Bake at 400F or  200°C for 30 minutes. 

Potato & Rosemary Focaccia

Focaccia with potatoes is definitely more filling compared to other focaccia toppings. A big slice of this focaccia can even make for a dinner.

Here’s how to make it. Cut the potatoes into slices and then add them to the top of the focaccia dough along with some rosemary. You can also add and some sausage to make it a complete feast. Bake in the oven at 430F or 220°C for 20 minutes.

I’m sure, among these ideas you’ll find a least a few focaccia toppings that you want to try.

Or maybe you already have your favorite? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to know!

Buona Appetito!