Summer Panzanella Salad

This panzanella salad recipe is the ultimate showcase for late summer bounty. A tangy dressing perfectly accents fresh tomatoes, peaches & corn.

Summer Panzanella Recipe

Everyone seems to be posting fall recipes lately, and I have one thing to say about that: too soon! It’s technically still summer, and we’ve been enjoying the (new to us) Chicago city markets. It’s so fun to get used to what grows in season here, which is a totally different climate than where we came from in Austin. There’s been a plethora of amazing tomatoes, (still) tons of fresh sweet corn, peppers, eggplants, and more! In my mind, summer isn’t over until the last peach is eaten, so here’s a bountiful tomato, peach, and corn panzanella salad recipe that I thought would be nice for your Labor Day gatherings. At home, I’ve been calling this the “everything summer” panzanella.

Panzanella Bread Salad ingredients

What is Panzanella?

Panzanella is an Italian bread salad. Traditional panzanella features cubes of stale bread, plenty of ripe tomatoes, onion, vinegar, and olive oil. I keep the vinegar, oil, onion, and tomatoes in this variation, but as you can see, my “everything summer” twist is wholly unconventional. With the sweet, juicy peaches, crisp corn, and chewy chickpeas, it’s a delectable showcase for late summer produce.

Tomato panzanella How to make panzanella salad

How to Make This Panzanella Salad

First, gather all of the best tomatoes, peaches, corn, and basil that you can find.

Second, find some good bread! I nabbed a gorgeous round of sourdough at the Tuesday market in Lincoln Square. You’re ready to cook!

Did I mention that this is a one bowl recipe? The dressing gets stirred at the bottom of a large bowl, before everything else gets added. It couldn’t be easier!

Next, add “everything summer” to the bowl – the tomatoes, peaches, corn, basil & some shaved red onion. Stir to let the peach and tomato juices mingle together.

Fold in some crusty day-old bread. Let it sit for a few minutes so that the bread can soak up some of the juices. Top with roasted chickpeas (optional for a little protein!) and plenty of sliced basil leaves.

Panzanella salad recipe

Panzanella Salad Recipe Variations

This salad is flexible, so make it to your liking! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • If you don’t like corn, skip it.
  • Replace the peaches with extra tomatoes, or with half tomatoes and half sliced English cucumber.
  • Add grilled or roasted red bell pepper.
  • Top it with shaved Parmesan.
  • Stir in some mini fresh mozzarella balls.
  • If you have extra time, toss your bread cubes with a bit of olive oil and bake in a 425-degree oven until they’re nicely golden, about 10 minutes. The stale bread will really soak up the salad’s tangy dressing, and it will hold its shape better if you want to make this salad ahead!

Let me know what variations you try!

Panzanella salad recipe ingredients

What to Serve with Panzanella Salad

Enjoy the panzanella on its own or serve it as a side dish. It would be excellent with classic summer picnic fare like portobello burgers, black bean burgers, veggie burgers, or BBQ sandwiches. It would also be a good starter for a light summer lasagna or roasted vegetable pasta.

No matter what, pair it with some crisp white wine and savor the last bits of summer!

Summer Panzanella Salad

If you love this panzanella salad recipe…

Try my watermelon salad, pasta salad, broccoli salad, or potato salad next!


5.0 from 11 reviews
Summer Panzanella Salad
 
Prep time
Total time
 
This summer panzanella is a delicious riff on the classic recipe. I add sweet peaches, crisp corn, and roasted chickpeas to make it a true celebration of summer bounty.
Author:
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 4 to 6
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice or sherry vinegar, more as desired
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup sliced red onion
  • Kernels from 2 ears of fresh corn
  • 10 small or 5 medium tomatoes, sliced into wedges
  • 16 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 3 peaches, pitted and sliced
  • 4 to 5 cups cubed crusty bread
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup roasted chickpeas, optional
Instructions
  1. In the bottom of a large bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice or vinegar, garlic, mustard, ½ teaspoon of salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Add the onion, and corn and toss until coated. Let sit for 10 minutes while you prep everything else.
  2. To the bowl, add the tomatoes, peaches, bread, and half the basil. Toss to combine, adding more olive oil if the bread is too dry, and more lemon, salt, and pepper, to taste. Let the salad sit for about 10 minutes so that the juices can soak into the bread. Give it a toss, then top with the remaining fresh basil and the chickpeas, if using.

 

29 comments

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  1. Haha I just talked to The Unlikely Baker about how I’m not ready for summer to be over! So I’m with you, hanging on to summer. Bring on all the summer recipes!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.28.2017

      ha, glad I’m not alone! I love summer maybe too much 🙂

  2. Susan
    08.28.2017

    This salad sounds wonderful. I especially like seeing a salad that starts with the dressing in the bottom of the bowl. That’s how my mother always did it.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.28.2017

      Thanks! So much easier that way!

  3. this panzanella has all my favorite things 🙂

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.28.2017

      💛 💛

  4. Marion
    08.28.2017

    Sounds awesome! I will have to try it.

  5. Maggie from omnivorescookbook.com
    08.28.2017

    I can’t agree with you more. I found myself reaching out to berries and peaches every time I visited the market. And I’m still trying to squeeze a one more summer dessert recipe onto my editorial calendar 🙂
    I hope you enjoy your new life Chicago! I love the city and its diversity of the food scene. Check out Nando Milano Trattoria if you get a chance. It’s one of my favorite Italian places. If you like something fancy, you can’t miss Girl and the Goat.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.28.2017

      I will check it out, thanks for the recommendation! We love girl & the goat 🙂

  6. Rita Prud'Homme/Pitre
    08.28.2017

    HELLO THERE..I’M FROM LAVAL QUEBEC & I’m vegan so that’s for me.
    I’m gonna try it this week.Beautiful to look & I’m pretty sure it’s also Good
    to eat. Thanks for the receipe.

  7. Lola from lawyernortheastphiladelphia.com
    08.28.2017

    Yum! I cannot wait to try this recipe out, thanks for the share. Love checking out your blog, keep up the posts!

  8. Yup, I agree—I need summer to stick around as long as possible!! This recipe is stunning 😍

  9. Hanna from georgesrestaurant.com.au
    08.29.2017

    This makes my mouth water!!! The most yummy looking panzanella. I’ve ever seen…Thank you.

  10. Erin from wellplated.com
    08.29.2017

    I’m hanging on to summer too! This looks perfect! 🙂

  11. can we talk about the amazingness of this dish? yes! peaches = perfection

  12. gerry speirs
    08.29.2017

    This salad is calling my name…loudly 😉 Delicious!!

  13. Kylie from curatedlifestudio.com
    08.29.2017

    My partner is *always* complaining how long it takes to prepare dinner. This will be perfect for those nights where we just want to throw something together or to take a plate to a BBQ!

    Thank you so much for sharing, I can’t wait to try this! 🙂

  14. Edie
    08.30.2017

    OMG! Pinning. This is such a sweet farewell to summer (and her glorious produce). Can’t wait to make this salad, and thank you for sharing 🙂

  15. krishi
    09.01.2017

    Loved this easy and healthy recipe. Thanks for sharing …

  16. criston from fitnesscabbage.com
    09.04.2017

    It’s taste was delicious and too healthy. I really like it and my whole family enjoying it. Thanks to provide this healthy recipe. I will try to make your other recipes because your all recipes very healthy.Please tell me how I can buy your recipe book?????

  17. Lisette
    09.10.2017

    Dear Jeanine, I made your lovely Panzanella today and I loved it! When I had almost finished making it, I realized that my daugthers don’t like fruit in their dinner and my eldest does not like tomato’s. The salat looked so good in your pictures that I had totally forgotten that this was not a recipe for my kids. I served it anyway and I’m really glad I did, cause they both did enjoy it and neither the peach nor the tomatoes were a problem!!! I skipped the bread btw but it was still delicious. Thank you for this great recipe!

  18. anna
    11.21.2017

    This looks really good. I intend making it tonight. So looking forward to it and I know my husband is going to love it. Thanks for sharing your food ideas.

  19. Anna
    02.23.2018

    Nice and great recipe

  20. Claudia
    07.09.2018

    The peaches are just delightful in this salad.

  21. Megan
    08.04.2018

    I’m using this as inspiration! I just joined a CSA that is northwest of Chicago and received a TON of fresh corn. I’m looking forward to experiencing the flavors!

  22. Sara
    07.07.2019

    We loved it! Absolutely delicious and a perfect summer dish!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.10.2019

      Yay, so happy to hear you loved it!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.