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Garden Panzanella

Here we go again, talking about our abundance of tomatoes. Are you sick of it yet? Don’t answer that. Would you be sick of all these tomatoes if they were yours? I’m not, because there are so many fresh tasting summer recipes to use them in before the season is over. Our latest tomato based meal was Garden Panzanella, an Italian bread salad popular during summer.

Essentially, Panzanella is cubes of dried out bread tossed with an oil and vinegar dressing, tomatoes, and basil. When described like that, it probably doesn’t sound too exciting. That’s where you’re wrong. This panzanella is packed with all sorts of fresh tasting flavor – salty olives, juicy tomatoes, fragrant basil, crunchy cucumbers, and sweet red onion. This dish was most definitely not lacking in flavor or appearance.

I adapted this salad based on the types of vegetables we had growing in our garden (or my neighbor’s garden) and was able to make quite a dent in our tomato supply. The recipe makes a lot; if you don’t think you’ll eat it all in one night, it’s best to half the recipe because this doesn’t do well as leftovers. It’s filling with the bread, but at the same time feels light and refreshing thanks to the ripe-from-the-garden herbs and vegetables. Served alongside grilled rosemary balsamic chicken it was a great summer meal.



Garden Vegetable Panzanella

Garden Panzanella

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Panzanella might seem a little odd if you've never had it, but it's really fun! Rather than having bread on the side you get to have it mixed in with all the lovely fresh vegetables and flavored with herbs.


  • 5 cups 1-inch rustic sourdough bread cubes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup minced parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 cups mini tomatoes, halved (yellow pear and grape)
  • 1 cup beefsteak tomato, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
  • 1 large red onion, sliced in thin half circles
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 3 lemon cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 2/3 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • freshly grated Parmesan


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, parsley, salt, pepper, and garlic. Fold in the bread, tomatoes, onion, olives, cucumber, and basil. Serve immediately, passing freshly grated Parmesan for sprinkling on top.


adapted from Real Simple

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Nutrition Information
Yield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 495Total Fat 33gSaturated Fat 5gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 27gCholesterol 1mgSodium 728mgCarbohydrates 46gFiber 6gSugar 10gProtein 9g offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.

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Katie @ goodLife {eats}

Friday 4th of September 2009

PaperdayStudio/Katie Stephenson - Yes, I take all my own photographs (unless otherwise noted on a post). Thanks! And I just love my new template from Ellie.

PaperdayStudio/Katie Stephenson

Thursday 3rd of September 2009

Wow, are you the photographer? Beautiful pictures and RAINY DAY TEMPLATES. Isn't Ellie just the best? I can't say enough about her.


Thursday 3rd of September 2009

I'm not tired of tomatoes yet! Love the bright colors in this meal, that's one of my favorite parts of summer meals... bright flavors and bright colors!

Amy J in SC

Wednesday 2nd of September 2009

Looks yum. Such a simple recipe that but I haven't though of it - thanks for sharing!

picky cook

Wednesday 2nd of September 2009

love it - we have been eating tons of panzanella this summer. to me it is the perfect summer dish.

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