This deliciously simple recipe has a fancier name — but I just like to call it “Bread Salad.” After all, it’s a salad that has bread in it. And did I mention that it was DELICIOUS?!? Seriously, so good! 😋
Another great thing about this recipe is that it doesn’t take too long to put together … especially if you get the kids to help you stir the croutons and chop the vegetables. (If you have kids old enough to handle a sharp knife, that is! 🔪 Or, to be around a hot stove. 🔥 If not, then don’t worry. It’s worth a few extra minutes to keep your kids safe.)
I don’t like to go on and on about my recipes … I just like to cut right to the chase! But, I will tell you this: If you are growing a vegetable garden at all this year, you NEED to give this recipe a try! So many fresh garden vegetables can go into it.
You can use any size and any color. If you decide to use cherry or grape tomatoes, then you’ll only need to cut them in half. Otherwise, cut your tomatoes into nice, big chunks and remove the seeds.
As with the tomatoes, you can use any size and any color of bell pepper here. Just make sure to cut them into big chunks — that is the fun of this salad.
Don’t Forget the Bread
In addition to all the delicious veggies that you’ll add … the most delectable part of this salad might be the homemade croutons that you’ll make out of a baguette. Yum. Just YUM.
Okay — Now Here’s the Recipe for Bread Salad
For the Croutons:
- 2 Tbsp. oil (either light-tasting olive oil or avocado oil)
- ~ 1 tsp. salt
- 1 baguette, cut in half lengthwise, then cut into ~1″ cubes (I have also tried cubed pita bread for this recipe) (You want about 6 cups total)
Heat the oil in a cast-iron skillet (or your favorite skillet) over medium heat. Add the salt and stir. Now add the bread cubes and stir frequently — turning over the bread cubes once in a while, as best you can. Cook for about 10 minutes, adding a touch more oil as necessary, until the croutons are golden brown and nice & toasty. Feel free to taste a crouton at this point … but I warn you: It’ll be hard to stop!
In between stirrings of the croutons, you can begin to cut the veggies….
For the Salad:
- 2 large tomatoes, any colors – cut into 1″ cubes (or a pint of cherry tomatoes, halved)
- 2 large bell peppers, any colors — cut into 1″ cubes (or use 4-5 baby bells)
- 1 cucumber, peeled — cut into 1″ cubes
- 1/2 purple onion — halved again and thinly sliced
- 10+ fresh basil leaves, snipped into bits (you decide how large you like them)
- 2-3 Tbsp. capers (without the liquid)
- Your favorite vinaigrette (Balsamic, Blush wine, Italian, Greek … you decide! I especially like one with a touch of mustard in it.).
Optional Items (this is where you can get creative). I have sometimes added any of the following:
- Cubed zucchini
- Cubed yellow squash
- Cubed avocado
- Marinated artichoke hearts, halved
- Cooked chicken or steak, cubed (I add meat if I want to make the salad the main course.)
Combine all of the cubed/chopped veggies together in a very large salad bowl. Toss with a little vinaigrette at a time until you get it just the way you like it. (Taste as you go.) When it’s perfect, then toss in the croutons. (I like to add the croutons later, after the salad dressing, so that they don’t absorb all the dressing at first.)
That’s it! That’s your Bread Salad — Enjoy!
[Serves about 12, as a side dish. If you’re serving a smaller group then adjust the amount of veggies and bread accordingly. It’s a very forgiving recipe!]
PS — If you like to find new and delicious recipes to feed your family, then check out my Healthimom’s Cookbook: A Recipe Bonanza of Tried and True Favorites. (Scroll down the page to view it.)