This BLT Panzanella Salad is everything you love about a BLT in salad form! Thick, crunchy pieces of toasted sourdough bread, crispy bacon, juicy cherry tomatoes, shredded romaine lettuce and a creamy mayonnaise dressing.
Before I was pregnant I thought pregnancy cravings were going to be a REAL problem. Like all of a sudden I would want to eat something and my world would have to stop until I had it… this has not been my experience, but I will say there are some foods I want to eat much more than others. I also find myself wanting to make the same foods over and over again.
That is where the BLT comes in. Again, it’s not a feeling of “I’ll die if I don’t have a BLT RIGHT NOW”, but more the feeling that at most any moment of the day a BLT sounds appealing (which is NOT the case for a lot of other foods). Because of this, I have eaten a BLT at least once and more often than not 2-3 times a week since the early stages of this pregnancy.
There is something about the combination of the crisp, salty bacon, fresh lettuce, juicy tomatoes and creamy mayo that I can’t resist. Put that all between 2 pieces of good quality, toasted bread and I am in BLT heaven!
As the summer went on I started dreaming of more ways this same flavor combination could be enjoyed and thus was born this BLT Panzanella.
A panzanella is a classic Tuscan bread salad traditionally made with stale bread, tomatoes and onions, marinated in olive oil and spices. Since a BLT is a sandwich it lends itself well to a panzanella because bread is already a big part of the equation.
How to Make a BLT Panzanella Salad
You will start off by cooking the bacon just like you would for a BLT.
Next, you will slice a loaf of sourdough bread into small, 1-inch chunks. You’ll toast the bread in the same skillet where you cooked the bacon. This way the bread takes on some flavor of the bacon and the grease helps it to toast.
Once the bread and the bacon are cooled, add them to a large salad bowl (break up the bacon into bite sized pieces while you add it). Toss in the cherry tomatoes and shredded romaine lettuce.
For the dressing, whisk the mayo with a little water and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. This will thin out the mayo enough that it can easily be used as a dressing instead of a spread. Pour it over the salad and toss!
The salad is best enjoyed within 2 hours of preparation and should be served at room temperature.
What Else Can I add to this BLT Panzanella Salad?
I kept this recipe simple to uphold the integrity of a true BLT. However there are many additions you could add to spruce it up a bit! Some ideas include:
Everything you love about a BLT in salad form! Thick, crunchy pieces of toasted sourdough bread, crispy bacon, juicy cherry tomatoes, fresh romaine lettuce and a creamy mayonnaise dressing.
10 slice thick-cut bacon
6 cups sourdough bread (cut into 1-inch chunks)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3 cups shredded romaine lettuce
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsps water
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
dash of black pepper
Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat
Cook the bacon until browned and crispy on both sides
Set bacon aside on a paper towel to absorb excess grease
Remove about half the bacon grease from the skillet and discard
Keep the rest in the skillet to toast the bread in
Add the bread to the skillet and toss to coat in the bacon grease
Turn the heat up to medium and toast the bread on all sides
Transfer the bread to a large salad bowl and allow to cool
Break the bacon into bite-sized pieces, add to the bowl and toss with the bread
Add the tomatoes and lettuce to the bowl, toss
Whisk together the mayo, water, lemon juice, salt and pepper
Drizzle over the salad and toss
Salad should be enjoyed within 2 hours of preparation
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If you make this BLT Panzanella let me know how you like it! Leave a star rating and comment here! If you snap a photo, I’d love to see it – share it over on Instagram and tag me @sprinklesandseasalt!