Panzanella Salad: Tomato, Bread and Parmesan

Panzanella Salad

This bright, fresh and rustic recipe for Italian Panzanella salad couldn’t be simpler to make or more delicious! It’s as easy as tossing rough cut tomatoes, crusty hunks of bread, sharp red onion, sweet basil and salty Parmesan together. With a little drizzle of olive oil and vinegar over top it’s good to go. Granted there is a short wait after salting the tomatoes but all it takes is a little planning ahead.

This is the perfect way to showcase the tomatoes, onion and basil that I’ve planted in my backyard garden. And I’m sure it will grace my table in many shapes and forms this summer.

Panzanella Salad

Panzanella Salad
(adapted from 200 Super Salads by Alice Storey)

1 + 1/4 pound large Tomatoes
2 teaspoons Sea Salt
5 ounces Italian Bread
1/3 cup Red Onion, thinly sliced in half moons
6-7 Basil leaves, rough chopped plus extra for garnish
2 teaspoons Red Wine Vinegar
2 tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Parmesan Cheese, shaved slices
Sea Salt and Fresh Black Pepper

1. Rough chop the tomatoes into 3/4-inch pieces and put them in a nonmetallic bowl. Sprinkle with sea salt and allow them to sit for an hour.

2. Tear the bread apart into rough bite-size chunks.

3. Squash the tomatoes with your hands, discard liquid and then toss with bread, onion, basil, vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish top with extra Basil leaves.

4. Serve with Parmesan shavings over top. Best served immediately.

Print Recipe

Panzanella Salad

Don’t forget to check out the next Burger Club Challenge hosted by Kim of Stirring the Pot!

I’m linking this to to Two for Tuesdays: Celebrate REAL FOOD!


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  1. Alex@amoderatelife says

    Oh I adore bread salad and your take on it looks delicious! You really are a talented food photographer! Thanks so much for participating in the two for tuesday recipe blog hop and I hope to see you again next week! I am following your blog. Keep it REAL! Alex

  2. Diana's Cocina says

    I would love to have a bowl of your rustic Italian Panzanella salad! What a beautiful dish.

  3. Lori says

    I've only made an Italian bread salad once. I'm so glad you reminded me of them again. Perfect for summer and yours looks wonderful!

  4. thebeachisgud says

    The Greek version of this salad with feta, seedless kalamata olives, red and yellow peppers, cucumbers and halved grape tomatoes in an oregano vinegarette is my all-time favorite salad. I'll have to try this Italian version.I use a crusty boule (but a small crusty baquette would do), cut into 1 inch squares, and toast the bread in a saute pan with olive oil & a dash of Kosher salt before adding to the salad. The bread still picks up the dressing, but stays crunchy. Even the leftovers are great for lunch the next day. Try it.

  5. Oriana says

    love it! and I actually like the fact you've added parmesan chips to it! but the real tuscan panzanella is a little bit different there's no parmesan and you must use cucumber rounds… I posted tuscan panzanella recipe just yesterday – right now in Tuscany it's the perfect lunch dish!

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