Who doesn’t love a carby salad?! This vibrant summery dish is perfect when served as a main or alternatively as a side at a BBQ or party. It’s so quick and easy to make and offers a nice switch to your regular leaf-based salad. Afterall, the combination of 1) a bread salad and 2) a halloumi salad, is destined to be a winner. The Panzanella Salad originates from Tuscany, with the primary ingredients being: bread, tomatoes and onion. I love the simplicity of the salad, with the minimal ingredients coming together to form something fresh, vibrant and indulgent (whilst still being healthy). It will take just 10 minutes to whip up and costs only £1.01 per portion so you can impress the crowds without breaking the bank.
This tangy & salty greek cheese is always a great addition to any recipe. But with this panzanella salad in particular, the bread/cheese combo when stirred into the the foundation of fresh veggies, is something magical. I’ve opted for low-fat halloumi here as we already have the mix of oils used for frying the bread/halloumi and for dressing the salad. So I wanted to be wary of adding more fat into the recipe.
Any stale bread can work here but ciabatta is definitely the best. I love the holey structure of ciabatta and when it’s stale and fried, it crisps up like no other.
A perfect fresh veggie to add to add bulk and brightness to the salad.
You could use white or red but I love the colour and flavour that red onion adds to this panzanella salad.
I find that cherry tomatoes are sweeter and tangier than regular tomatoes, so that’s why I chose them for this salad. I also think that as this is a halloumi & bread salad, we want more of a contrast to the other ingredients which regular salad tomatoes might not provide.
Red wine vinegar adds a nice acidity to balance out all the flavourful fats in this recipe. We want to use extra-virgin olive oil for the dressing as we wont be heating the dressing. Rapeseed oil has a higher smoke point so we use this when frying the bread and halloumi.
Start by frying the halloumi slices in rapeseed oil (1 tsp to start) in a non stick frying pan. Once golden brown on both sides set aside.
Using the same pan, fry the ciabatta chunks, along with a coating of rapeseed oil (around 2 tbsp). Fry on a medium heat unitl golden brown and crispy. Set aside to cool with the halloumi.
Mix the sliced cucumber, red onion and cherry tomatoes in a large bowl with red wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil.
Then add the golden brown halloumi slices and the crispy bread chunks. Season with salt and pepper and enjoy!
What is a panzanella salad?
The Panzanella Salad originates from Tuscany, with the primary ingredients being: bread, tomatoes and onion.
How long will it keep?
When the dressing has been incorporated into the salad, it’s best served immediately as we want to enjoy the bread and halloumi at it’s crispiest.
What shall I serve this with?
I created this recipe and serving sizes with the thought that it would be a main dish. But you could definitely serve it as a side and pair it with some grilled meats/bbq foods.
To meal prep, keep all of the components of the salad separately, especially the dressing. Then assemble the salad when you’re ready to eat. The prepped ingredients will stay fresh for 4/5 days, but the bread will reduce in crispiness the longer you leave it. If you wanted ensure that this wouldn’t be an issue, you could fry a serving of bread on the day you’re going to eat it.
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Serve 3 portions instead of 4
Nutritional info per serving: 584cal |Carbs: 41g | Fats: 24g |Protein: 10g
Serve 5 portions instead of 4
Nutritional info per serving: 350kcal |Carbs:24g | Fats:15g |Protein:6g
Replace the halloumi with Violife – Vegan Cheese Block (Halloumi – Wedge Grill Mediterranean) (200g)
Nutritional info per serving: 452kcal |Carbs: 36g | Fats: 33g |Protein: 7g