While it might be grilling season year-round, here in Florida, grilling season is officially here. What better way to celebrate than with beautiful grilled veggies? Zucchini and White Bean Pesto Salad is the perfect side for any grilled feast.
This easy dish combines a pantry staple with a handful of fresh, seasonal ingredients. Whether you're looking for a fun side dish or want to turn a salad into a main, this colorful salad is sure to please.
Texture and Flavor
Throwing together an elegant salad shouldn't be complicated. When you think about how textures and flavors play together, you can find instant inspiration. Zucchini and White Bean Pesto Salad delivers with every bite.
Zucchini seems to be one of those universally loved and always available produce. Especially in the summer when the rain helps zucchini grow like crazy, you'll find verdant stacks of it at your local farmer's markets and grocery stores. The lightly sweet summer squash is delicious on it's on, but also takes on other flavors.
While I used grilled zucchini for this recipe, adding a layer of smokiness, you can also use roasted, fried, or even air-fried zucchini with this. And leftover grilled zucchini? This is the perfect way to give it a complete makeover.
I always have cans of beans stocked in my pantry, as well as pesto. Both of these pantry pulls bring texture and flavor to this dish. The cannellini beans add a little creaminess as well as richness to each bite as well as giving this salad a boost of protein. This is an ideal dish to serve up to vegetarians and meat lovers alike!
Fresh basil reinforces the herbaceous note of the pesto and brings its own unique sweetness. Feathery whisps of shaved parmesan cheese add the umami of savory, nutty, saltiness, tying everything together. Don't be afraid to be generous with the parmesan!
Effortless Zucchini and White Bean Pesto Salad
Whether you're using leftover grilled zucchini or cooking it up fresh, this colorful and bright dish comes together quickly. Pour a glass of wine, put on your favorite music, and let's make a fun summer salad!
- Make sure your cannellini beans are well drained and rinsed.
- Add your zucchini and beans to a bowl along with a tablespoon of pesto. Toss to make sure they are thoroughly coated.
- Use a vegetable peeler to shave generous strips of parmesan over the top of your salad.
- Garnish with fresh basil.
Are you looking for more easy salad ideas? Make sure you check out my recipe for a Spring Brunch Board with Asparagus.
Zucchini and White Bean Pesto
- 1 Salad bowl
- 1 vegetable peeler
- 2 zucchini, ends trimmed, cut into ribons small
- 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 tbsp pesto, homemade or store bought
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese, shaved
- salt and pepper to taste
- fresh basil leaves
- olive oil for brushing
- Brush both sides of the zucchini ribons with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Prepare a grill for direct grilling or preheat a grill pan.
- Grill the first side of the zucchini for 2-3 minutes. You are just looking to char the zucchini a little and soften it. Flip the zucchini and cook the second side for an additional 2-3 minutes.
- Add the zucchini and cannellini beans to a bowl along with the pesto. Stir to thoroughly combine and coat.
- Shave the parmesan over the top of the salad.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Garnish with fresh basil and extra parmesan.