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The Best Summer Panzanella Caprese Salad

Panzanella caprese salad is a rustic bread salad that bursts with sweet tomatoes, pungent basil, and creamy mozzarella tossed in a tangy balsamic reduction. This summer panzanella salad will be on repeat as an easy dinner option during the warmer months.

Panzanella Caprese Salad
Panzanella Caprese Salad
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Say hello to my current favorite summer dinner: panzanella caprese salad or caprese panzanella.

Whatever you call it’s amazing.

How could it not be?

It’s a salad full of two of the world’s best things: bread and cheese.

Of course there are some beautiful, sweet summer cherry tomatoes and fragrant basil and the most delicious balsamic glaze ever.

But we can call it salad, so therefore…it’s obviously full of vegetables and not bread and cheese, right?

Glad we’re on the same page there.

Panzanella Caprese Salad
Panzanella Caprese Salad

Ok, so that’s not how it works, but I can justify almost anything based on the word salad. Anything. Including eating copious amounts of bread and cheese.

You’re welcome.

What better way to bulk up a Caprese than with carbs in the form of delicious, golden brown cubed Italian bread?

Anyway, for the rest of summer this is your meal.

Toasted Italian bread brushed with olive oil, fresh mozzarella, and cheese.

Ingredients and Kitchen Supplies

Ingredients for Panzanella Caprese Salad
Ingredients for Panzanella Caprese Salad

To make this caprese panzanella salad you’ll need:

  • Bread– Bakery Italian style bread, cut into cubes and toasted. Do yourself a favor and don’t use sliced bread.
  • Tomatoes- Cherry tomatoes cut in half. You could use any other tomatoes you like, but you’ll need to chop them. You may also need to squeeze the seeds and water out of some varieties.
  • Mozzarella– Fresh mozzarella. The small balls works fabulously so you don’t have to chop them.
  • Basil– Fresh basil. Substituting dried herbs here really doesn’t work.
  • Olive oil– To brush on the bread before toasting it.
  • Garlic– Optional but highly recommended! Toss the bread fresh garlic on the bread to give it flavor without it being overwhelming.
  • Salt and pepper
  • Balsamic glaze– Balsamic vinegar and honey

Kitchen supplies to have on hand:

How to Make Panzanella Caprese Salad

1. Prep the bread.

Cube bakery bread to prep.
Cut the bakery loaf of bread into 1 inch cubes

Just cube up half a loaf of good Italian bakery bread and brush it with olive oil.

Sprinkle it with garlic, salt, and pepper and pop it in the oven and bake it until it’s lightly golden.

2. Prep the tomatoes.

Chopping cherry tomatoes
The bulk of the prep: chopping the cherry tomatoes

While the bread toasts to golden perfection in the oven, halve the cherry tomatoes.

Then set them aside.

3. Make the balsamic glaze.

the dressing for strawberry salad is done when it coats the back of a spoon
The dressing is done when it coats the back of a spoon

Whisk the balsamic vinegar and honey together and cook it over medium low to medium heat until the glaze bubbles and thickens.

4. Assemble the salad.

Panzanella Caprese Salad
Panzanella Caprese Salad

Once the glaze is done, you can toss the toasted bread with the tomatoes, mozzarella and basil.

Then drizzle the balsamic glaze over the salad.

Serve and enjoy!

Storing Leftovers

Panzanella Caprese Salad
Panzanella Caprese Salad

As with most other salads, I don’t recommend saving the leftovers for more than a day.

If you do have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for a day.

Keep in mind that storing this leftover may make the bread softer.


Panzanella Caprese Salad
Panzanella Caprese Salad

u003cstrongu003eWhat is panzanella?u003c/strongu003e

Panzanella is an Italian salad made with bread and vegetables.

What kind of bread should I use for panzanella?u003cbru003e

Stale bread! You don’t need to use fresh bakery bread. Just like when you make u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00222631u0022u003eFrench toast casserolesu003c/au003e, older bread holds up better.

What do you serve with panzanella?

I find that this caprese panzanella salad is hearty enough to serve for dinner. In fact, I ate this often when I was pregnant with twins and VERY hungry. If you want to add more protein, you could pair grilled salmon, shrimp, or even this u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00225442u0022u003eEasy Grilled Chicken Recipeu003c/au003e. Or keep it vegetarian and toss in some u003ca href=u0022 data-type=u0022postu0022 data-id=u00229139u0022u003eEasy Garlic Roasted Chickpeas with Parmesanu003c/au003e for extra crunch and protein.

Tips and Tricks

  • Day old bread is best for this! No need for fresh bread.
  • Want a different dressing option? Try pesto, olive oil and balsamic, or Italian dressing.
  • The fresh garlic is optional, but I highly recommend it for a little extra flavor. And you could even up the flavor more by tossing the bread cubes with grated Parmesan cheese before baking them too!

Other Caprese Recipes

Looking for other Caprese recipes? Try these:

For a different take on panzanella try this Burrata Panzanella Salad Recipe.

Did you make this? Let me know!

Did you make this caprese panzanella salad or any other recipe on my site? Leave me a comment below and let me know how you liked it. And make sure you follow along with me on FacebookPinterest and Instagram to see everything we’ve got going on.

wp-tasty/tasty-recipe {“id”:3664
Panzanella Caprese Salad

Panzanella Caprese Salad

Caprese panzanella salad is a rustic bread salad that bursts with sweet tomatoes, pungent basil, and creamy mozzarella tossed in a tangy balsamic reduction. This summer panzanella salad will be on repeat as an easy dinner option during the warmer months.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Course: salads
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Caprese panzanella salad, panzanella caprese salad, panzanella salad with mozzarella
Servings: 1 large salad
Calories: 668kcal
Author: jfletcher


For the salad

  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes halved
  • 8 ounces of mini fresh mozzarella balls
  • half a loaf of a loaf of bakery Italian bread cut into cubes
  • 4 tbs olive oil divided
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 20 fresh basil leaves

For the balsamic glaze

  • 1 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs of honey


For the salad

  • Preheat the oven to 350.
  • Cube the bread into roughly 1 inch cubes. Toss with 3 tbs olive oil and one cube of crushed garlic. Spread out evenly onto a baking tray. Season with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 for about 5 minutes or until golden. Turn bread over and bake for another 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from oven.
  • While bread is in the oven, halve the cherry tomatoes and set aside.
  • Toss the bread with remaining olive oil, cherry tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella. Finish with balsamic glaze.

For the balsamic glaze

  • Add one cup of balsamic vinegar to a small sauce pan over medium heat and whisk in two tablespoons of honey. Cook until the mixture comes to a slow boil and reduces to make a thick syrup (about 5 minutes), stirring regularly. Remove from heat and pour on salad.


see post for notes


Serving: 2-4 servings | Calories: 668kcal | Carbohydrates: 81g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 1006mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 24g
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  1. […] Panzanella Caprese– Oh hello, Caprese with hunks of crusty bread. Aren’t you a perfect summer dinner? […]

  2. Joan Cajic says:

    I love panzanella, always good no matter what. This looks really good and delicious.

  3. Kasey Ma says:

    Wow this looks so yummy, and these pictures are beautiful.

    Kasey Ma

  4. Diana tidswell says:

    These looks yummy and very healthy as well. I love salad and I can’t wait to make this at home.

  5. Luci says:

    This salad looks so delicious. I love the chunkiness of the salad with all the cheese, tomatoes and toast.

  6. I was looking for a good caprese salad to make, and cannot wait to try this!

  7. Haha, love all the bread and cheese! This looks delicious!


  8. Wow this salad looks so scrumptious!! Your photography is stellar, it looks just so perfect!!


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