Panzanella - Bread Salad with Tomatoes and Kombucha

Panzanella is an Italian bread salad, here perfectly rounded off with kombucha

Italian bread salad with kombucha dressing? Yes, that fits! People have always known how to enjoy traditional Italian cuisine – and eat healthily at the same time. It is not for nothing that the so-called “Mediterranean diet” is considered a popular diet even outside of Italy. With lots of vegetables and olive oil, you can not only prevent heart disease and diabetes, but also enjoy a delicious feast.

Italian bread salad, also known as Tuscan panzanella, is a Mediterranean salad that combines numerous delicious ingredients from Mediterranean cuisine. It is traditionally prepared with stale bread and lots of fresh vegetables (with a generous amount of whatever is available in the bowl: tomatoes, peppers, onions, cucumbers or all of the above) and then served with a strong vinaigrette. Because panzanella contains a good portion of bread, the salad is not only suitable as a side dish, but also as a light main meal that can fill you up. However, it really comes into its own when you combine it with meat, fish or vegetables from the grill (in Germany it has long since become a popular grill side dish), with fried salmon or with baked sheep's cheese from the oven. If you toast your bread in the oven for the recipe, you also save on preheating for fish or oven cheese.

We thought: Why not top off the already healthy bread salad with fresh, homemade kombucha? Kombucha goes perfectly with the balsamic vinaigrette and brings valuable live microbes to the salad. Of course, kombucha is perfect, which has already been fermented into intensive kombucha vinegar because your scoby of Wellness-Drinks was allowed to “work” long enough. If your kombucha is still mild and sweet, you just need to add more balsamic vinegar and lemon juice to add some additional acidity.

The most important thing first: For this recipe you only need a baking tray (or a pan), a salad bowl and a good half an hour of time. Traditionally, old dark farmer's bread or ciabatta is used for panzanella, but you can also use any other bread, even rolls or baguettes. If you don't have any leftovers at home, you can of course roast fresh bread in a pan or oven until crispy.


Kombucha goes perfectly with the balsamic vinaigrette and brings valuable live microbes to the salad
This is what you need in terms of ingredients:
  • 300 g stale farmer's bread, white bread, ciabatta or baguette
  • 300 g red and yellow cherry tomatoes
  • 150 g arugula or other green salad
  • 1 large red onion
  • 100 ml homemade Kombucha or Kombucha vinegar (recipe)
  • 10-12 dark, pitted olives (e.g. Kalamata)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 80 g grated Parmesan
  • a few sprigs of fresh basil
  • 6 tbsp olive oil (3 tbsp for toasting the bread / 3 tbsp for the dressing)
  • To taste: 2-3 tbsp dark balsamic vinegar and 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt and black pepper
And it's that easy:
  1. Tear or cut bread into bite-sized pieces. Chop garlic finely. Carefully heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan (you don't want it to smoke!). Gently toast the bread over medium heat. When the bread starts to take on color, add the garlic and fry briefly. Remove everything and drain on kitchen paper.
  2. Alternatively, the bread can be prepared in the oven: Drizzle the small pieces or slices with the oil and bake them in the oven at approx. 180 °C. After about 8 minutes, spread the garlic over the bread and continue to roast until crispy for a few minutes.
  3. Clean and wash the arugula or green salad, shake it off well and cut into bite-sized pieces. Peel the red onion, halve it and cut it into rings. Wash the cherry tomatoes and halve or quarter them. Halve the olives or leave them whole, depending on your preference.
  4. For the vinaigrette, mix together the kombucha, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil and season with salt and black pepper.
  5. Grate the Parmesan. Set aside as a topping along with the washed and torn basil leaves.
  6. Shortly before serving, mix all the ingredients except the bread well with the vinaigrette. Fold in the bread just before serving or, if you want it to be a little softer, let it sit for a few minutes.
  7. Taste again at the end. Salty enough? Sufficient acid? If so, get on the table!
  8. The panzanella with kombucha dressing is also easy to prepare and then take with you to work or a barbecue party! Simply transport the toasted bread and the salad and dressing separately in two containers and mix them together when serving. The toasted bread will last a week or even longer at room temperature.


As already mentioned, such a delicious bread salad can be varied very well with whatever the kitchen and season has to offer and it always tastes good. Instead of the grated Parmesan, you can also use a generous amount of mozzarella. Fresh mint can also be used instead of basil - but then dose it more carefully! You can replace some of the tomatoes with peppers or cucumbers. A small jar of capers (instead of olives) or 100 g of roasted pine nuts give the salad additional pep. A few dried tomatoes, marinated in oil and herbs and cut into fine strips, make panzanella spicier and more intense. And a little grated lemon peel is a secret here (as with many recipes) for that certain something...

Panzanella - Bread Salad with Tomatoes and Kombucha


  • Description: This is how you conjure up an Italian bread salad with tomatoes and kombucha dressing
  • Category: Salad, Accompaniment, Side dish, Main dish Cuisine: Italian
  • Tags: Bread salad, Panzanella, Kombucha recipe, Salad, Kombucha, Fermentation
  • Prep Time: 25 min, Cooking Time: 15 min
  • Yield: 4-6 servings, Nutrition facts (calories): 225 (ca.)
  • Author: Wellness-Drinks, Published: 23.01.2024

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