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Caprese Panzanella

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Caprese Panzanella is the perfect summer salad to bring to BBQs, picnics and backyard get togethers. This caprese salad is dressed up with toasty Italian bread and a nice drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. 

Caprese Panzanella is a simple summer salad. Everything comes together in under 20 minutes!

Caprese Panzanella

Summer salads are the best. When you hear the words Caprese Panzanella doesn’t it make you happy? Summer salads that can be thrown together in under 20 minutes are key. The ones you can bring to that BBQ or backyard party you are going to in a few hours that you know everyone will love. You have to have a good stock pile of those kind of recipes, right?

I have a few favorites I make time and time again including this Summer Orzo Pasta Salad and this Greek Orzo Pasta Salad. Yup, I am a sucker for the orzo. But I also like salads without the pasta in them and am always up for trying something new. Now we aren’t skipping the carbs all together by leaving out the pasta because we are going to add in some toasty, crusty bread cubes.

Caprese Panzanella is a simple summer salad. Everything comes together in under 20 minutes!

I had a version of this Caprese Panzanella salad that my sister in law made in Chicago a few weeks ago and fell in love. It has all of those fresh summer flavors of tomatoes, basil and crisp cucumbers paired with creamy mozzarella and crusty bread. It is the perfect salad to make in the heat of the summer when our gardens are producing all of those beautiful summer vegetables. I drizzle a little bit of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar on the finished salad with salt and pepper but you can get creative with the dressing if you like.

When I had this salad in Chicago I really enjoyed the crusty bread in the salad and forgot how much I love panzanella salads. I think it goes hand in hand with my love for a little crunch in my salads whether it is croutons, crusty bread or some sort of nut.

Caprese Panzanella is a simple summer salad. Everything comes together in under 20 minutes!

If you plan to make this salad and take it with you to a party or BBQ I suggest waiting to add the bread until you are ready to serve the salad. If you add it too soon it will get soggy and the whole purpose of why it is in the salad is lost. I used a good crusty Italian style baguette but feel free to use your favorite crusty bread or whatever you have on hand.

If you want to get a little more creative with this salad you can add things like sliced red onion and avocado. Both work nicely together in this salad.

Caprese Panzanella is a simple summer salad. Everything comes together in under 20 minutes!

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Caprese Panzanella

  • Author: A Cedar Spoon // Julia Jolliff
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Salad, Lunch

Description

Caprese Panzanella is the perfect summer salad to bring to BBQs, picnics and backyard get togethers. This caprese salad is dressed up with toasty Italian bread and a nice drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of toasted bread cubes {I used a crusty Italian bread}
  • 1/2 of an english cucumber, cubed
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 6 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, drained and sliced {or you can buy the small balls and slice them in half}
  • 20 fresh basil leaves. thinly sliced {more to taste}
  • 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, separated
  • Drizzle of balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Cut the baguette into 1-inch cubes and lay on a baking sheet in a single layer. Drizzle the 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over the bread {you may want a little more}. Bake the bread for 15-20 minutes, or until just crisp and toasty. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  2. In a large salad bowl combine the english cucumber, tomatoes, mozzarella and basil. Gently toss in the olive oil and balsamic vinegar along with salt and pepper to taste. When you are ready to serve the salad add the bread cubes in and gently toss again.
  3. Lightly sprinkle with more salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

Any crusty bread will work great for this recipe. Use whatever you might have on hand!

There are a variety of things you can add to this salad including sliced red onion, avocado and heirloom tomatoes.

I suggest waiting to add the bread into the salad until you are ready to eat it because it will get soggy. You can make the caprese salad the night ahead and add the bread the day of, but I think this salad is best fresh so I suggest making it the day you plan to eat it!


Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup

Nutritional information is for 1 cup. 

Caprese Panzanella Salad Nutritional Information - so good

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Caprese Panzanella Salad is a light and refreshing summer salad. A favorite at parties!

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