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Basil Pesto Panzanella

Author Cathy Trochelman



  • 6-8 c. crusty bread cubed
  • 3 Tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 12 oz. fully cooked Italian sausage links I used Trader Joe's Italian Chicken Sausages, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 c. tomatoes cut into bite-sized pieces (I used different sizes of red and yellow tomatoes)
  • 2 c. zucchini or cucumbers cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 c. chopped bell peppers I used a yellow & orange
  • 1/4 c. chopped red onion
  • 1/4 c. fresh basil leaves torn
  • 1/2 c. fresh shaved Parmesan cheese

Pesto Vinaigrette

  • 3/4 c. olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3 Tbsp. golden balsamic vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. minced fresh basil
  • 2 tsp. prepared pesto
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add bread cubes and salt; cook, stirring, until bread is nicely browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. In the same pan, brown Italian sausage pieces, stirring occasionally, 10 min. or to taste.
  3. Combine chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, and basil in a large salad bowl and toss to combine.
  4. Add bread, sausage, Parmesan, and vinaigrette; toss to combine.

Pesto Vinaigrette

  1. Combine all ingredients and shake well to mix.