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Panzanella with Grapes, Nectarines & Sunflower Seeds { Tuscan Bread Salad }

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My Summertime Panzanella with Grapes, Nectarines and roasted Sunflower Seeds is a summery twist on our beloved Tuscan Bread Salad. Perfect for lunch or a casual dinner in the garden! 
Summery Panzanella with Grapes, Nectarines and roasted Sunflower Seeds


Tuscan Panzanella – the perfect recipe for using up leftover bread!

For me, the best thing about eating a salad has always been the part when I got to mop up all the leftover dressing with a piece of bread. Panzanella, a Tuscan bread, and tomato salad,  takes this “bread into dressing” idea to the next level. Plus, it’s the best way to use up stale bread! And ever since I’ve gotten more serious at bread baking, there’s quite a lot of it around here!
 Given the hot temperatures outside, I wanted to create a light, summery, fruity and fun version of the classic Italian Bread Salad “Panzanella” so I decided to clean out my entire fruit bowl and add its contents to my salad.
Panzanella mit Trauben und Nektarinen


Fresh summer fruit and aromatic herbs take this simple Tuscan Bread Salad to the next level!

For me, fresh, ripe nectarines are the essence of summer and I just love to put them into hearty dishes, like this Nectarine and Blueberry Risotto I made the other day. For our summer Panzanella, we also add some grapes, tomatoes and roasted bell pepper as well as some fried onions to the salad bowl.

To get some Mediterranean flair into our fruity Italian Panzanella, I also threw some garlic, fresh thyme, and rosemary into the frying pan when cooking the onion and bell peppers.

Panzanella mit Nektarinen und Trauben


When it comes to making Panzanella, timing is everything!

 I love the different textures and the mix of fried and raw ingredients, this perfect combination of sweet and savory, in this salad. The sweet nectarine chunks, juicy grapes, and crisp cucumber slices are added right towards the end to maintain their texture and aroma. The roasted sunflower seeds add extra texture and a hearty nuttiness! Make sure to let your Tuscan Bread Salad rest for about 15 minutes before serving it, to allow for the aromas to mingle and the bread to soak up some of the dressing.
And what’s for dessert? For more Italian recipes, check out my Homemade Limoncello, these gorgeous Italian Chestnut Cookies , this Mascarpone Cake or my Recipe for Basil Gelato!
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Panzanella with Nectarines, Grapes & Sunflower Seeds { Tuscan Bread Salad }

Course Salad, side, starter
Cuisine Italian, vegetarian
Keyword easy, fruit, Italian, Panzanella, Tuscan, Vegetarian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Resting time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 3 Portions
Calories 310 kcal
Author Kiki Johnson


  • 1 dry baguette
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • garlic cloves finely sliced
  • twig rosemary
  • twigs of thyme
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 2 red bell peppers sliced
  • 3 Nectarines , in thick slices
  • 250 g Cocktail Tomatoes in quarters
  • 1/4 of a big cucumber sliced
  • about 25 grapes
  • 4 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • tbsp honey
  • 6 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper and salt to taste


  1. We start by tearing apart the day old baguette. If it's already too hard to tear apart, you can slice it with a knife. 
  2. Heat up 2 Tbsp of olive oil and toast the bread in the pan over medium-high heat, adding the garlic towards the end.  Let toast until golden brown and until the garlic stops to smell raw.

  3. Transfer the bread to a salad bowl, add more oil to the pan, put over medium-high heat and add the herbs. Now fry the onions and add the pepper in the oil for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and let fry for a few minutes more, for extra charr. Add the nectarine slices when the rest of your veg is done and toss to combine. Take the pan off the heat.

  4.  Quarter or half the tomatoes. Toast the sunflower seeds in a pan without added oil for about 2 minutes over medium heat. Slice the cucumbers and set aside.

  5.  Mix the dressing by stirring together the last 4 ingredients. Drizzle half of it over the bread mixture and toss. 

  6. Add everything to the salad bowl with the bread chunks and toss well to combine.

  7. Let rest 15 minutes and serve! 

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