Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken | Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken

A delicious light main dish meal for the summer. This Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken takes the best of the seasons produce and turns it into a delicious meal everyone loves. Simple to make and so beautiful, you need to get this summer salad on your menu today!

Plated dish of panzanella salad with grille chicken ready to eat

Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken
Original photo of Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken 2012
Panzanella Salad in a bowl with a spoon and grilled chicken in the back

A few weeks ago, my family and I ate at a local restaurant we enjoy and they had a great salad on their summer son ordered it and said it was delicious. Forward to last week, when I had several ripe tomatoes sitting on my counter needing to be used up...and so my version of the Lizard's Panzanella salad with grilled chicken was born.

This is a great light summer meal...super simple to prepare with fresh, healthy ingredients. Fresh, vine ripe tomatoes, crisp red onion, sweet bell peppers, refreshing cucumber, fresh basil, grill charred French bread and grilled chicken with a olive oil and vinegar dressing that the bread soaks up.

Panzanella Salad with Grilled Chicken

The Panzanella salad ( bread salad ) can also be served without chicken as a side dish, rather than as a main dish as pictured here. I really like to char the bread on the grill...but you could also crisp it up in the oven if you wish.

Panzanella Salad w/ Grilled Chicken
inspired by Winking Lizard

Servings - 4 Serving Size - 1/4th of recipe Points Plus per serving - 9 Points+
Calories - 374.2, Total Fat - 7.3g, Carb. - 44.3g, Protein - 33.6g, Fiber - 4.7g


16 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
6 - 8 red, ripe tomatoes, cut into 1" cubes
1 cup English cucumber, diced
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1 large bell pepper ( red, green, yellow or orange...I used an orange one), diced
8 large fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 TBS. extra virgin olive oil
3 TBS. red wine vinegar
salt and pepper, to taste
8 oz. GOOD crusty bread slices, such as French or Sourdough
misto filled with olive oil ( to mist bread before grilling)

1. Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper, set aside.

2. In large bowl, combine the tomato cubes, cucumber, red onion, bell pepper, basil leaves, 1 TBS. olive oil, red wine vinegar and salt and pepper. Mix well. Set aside to make a juice for the grilled bread.

3. Grill the chicken over med-high heat until it is done. Cover with foil to keep warm. Spray the bread slices with the olive oil from the misto and lightly salt. Grill over med-high heat until it is cripsy and somewhat charred.

4. Cut the grilled bread into chunks and add to the tomato mixture, allowing bread to absorb some of the juice that has formed on the bottom of the bowl. Portion out the tomato-bread mixture onto individual plates. Slice the chicken breasts. Top each plate with tomato-bread salad with approx. 4 oz. chicken. Garnish with more chopped fresh basil, if desired.

Holy Moly...was this a most excellent dish. So very summery. So easy and light.
My son said my version was even better than the one at the restaurant he enjoyed!

My life has just been so very incredibly packed with "stuff." We are busy this week preparing my youngest son for his trip to France next week. My middle son did graduate...but it was a bittersweet occasion as we learned that morning of 3 classmates that had perished in an automobile accident the night before...two of which were to graduate with him. The tragic event left our community mourning having to bury, eventually 4 young lives. Very sad. It makes you remember to live life to it's fullest...because you honestly never know what the next moment will bring.

This blog post has been updated with new photos.


  1. Hi Renee. I've bookmarked this for when the tomatoes are fresh and plentiful. I have ALWAYS wanted to try the bread salad and never have. Now I will. Hope you are doing well.

  2. I wish I had this for dinner tonight! I want to eat at your house. So sorry to hear about the tragic loss of so many young lives. Sounds like you have a lot on your plate right now be sure to take good care of you!

  3. Through your facebook page I was able to find the article of the car accident - it is such a shame. When I was in high school 4 girls ran their car into a tree and died the night of my Senior Prom - by now they have been dead longer than they were alive. :(

    Looks like your son is having a great time in France - do you get an exchange student??

    1. yes, it is so sad how short their lives were. Of course, life goes on for those left behind.

      Thanks...he is having a fantastic time in France! No it's not an exchange student program...he is just going as a group from school.

  4. Hope you are having a great summer Renee! :D

  5. Oh my goodness this looks so good! I think I now know what I am going to eat for lunch and dinner the rest of the week lol. xo

  6. That is so sad :(. Hope you all were still able to enjoy celebrating the graduation. This salad...yum! I love a good panzenella. I'll take any excuse to eat bread and call it a meal ;)


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