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Panzanella

Panzanella is a colorful and hearty Italian salad that puts to good use juicy tomatoes and stale bread. My take on this classic is perfect to meal prep ahead!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 2 people
Calories: 430kcal
Author: Sara @ Gathering Dreams

Ingredients

For the salad

  • 1 slice of stale bread
  • pound cherry tomatoes - sliced in half
  • ½ red onion
  • 10 large basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoon black olives
  • 1 can (15 oz) chickpeas - drained

For the dressing

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 6 tablespoon water
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano - plus extra for garnish
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper - to taste

Optional ingredients

  • 2 sundried tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon caper
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 red or yellow pepper

Instructions

If you are making the panzanella salad to eat straight away:

  • Prepare the dressing: In a bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, oregano, water, salt, and black pepper to taste. Whisk until combined.
  • Prepare the bread: If you have stale bread (at least 2-3 days old), simply cut it into cubes. If you only have fresh bread, toast it in the oven or in a toaster for a couple of minutes, until it becomes golden in color.
  • Prepare the salad: Thinly slice the onion, cut the tomatoes in half (or quarters if they are big) and place in a bowl with the chickpeas. Add the black olives (I used kalamata olives) and the bread cubes. Pour the dressing all over the salad and mix well.
  • Sprinkle the basil leaves all over and let it rest for a minimum of 20 minutes (but ideally a couple of hours) before serving.

If you are making the panzanella in a jar:

  • Prepare the dressing: In a bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, oregano, water, salt, and black pepper to taste. Whisk until combined.
  • Prepare the bread: if you have stale bread (at least 2-3 days old), simply cut it into cubes. If you only have fresh bread, toast it in the oven or in a toaster for a couple of minutes, until it becomes golden in color.
  • Layer the salad: add the onions at the bottom of the jar, then the chickpeas, followed by the chunky bread pieces, and the chopped tomatoes. Pour the dressing over the salad. Add the basil leaves on top, close the jar and place in the fridge.
  • You can meal prep this salad for up to 2-3 days in advance.
  • When you are ready to eat panzanella, just pour it on a plate, mix it well and dive in.

Notes

Other ingredients: The amazing thing about panzanella is how versatile it can be. You can add several other ingredients to personalize it. 
A few examples:
  • Sun dried tomatoes
  • Capers
  • Cucumber
  • Red or yellow peppers
And anything else you like.
Onion: If you find the taste too pungent, you can let it rest in water for 10-15 minutes before adding it to the salad.
How long in advance you can meal prep this salad: You can meal prep this salad up to 2 days in advance. Any longer and the tomatoes might lose their freshness.

Nutrition

Calories: 430kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 727mg | Potassium: 370mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 771IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg