What to Do with Fresh Tomatoes

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Learn what to do with fresh tomatoes for easy, healthy, delicious meals the whole family will love. You can use cherry tomatoes or big slices of fresh tomato to make any meal even more tasty.

A strainer is filled with raw cherry tomatoes in shades of yellow and red.

We are heading into my favorite time of year -- fresh tomato season!

I've already spotted big, gorgeous piles of heirloom tomatoes and pints of cherry tomatoes on the farmer's market tables near our home.

For the next several months, I'll be adding fresh tomato to almost every meal. Often they are used fresh and raw but sometimes I will cook them for tossing with pasta and other stir fry dishes.

No matter how you prep them, tomatoes are a nutritious part of family dinner that make everything taste better!

Put a Tomato Slice On a Burger

The most obvious thing to do with a fresh tomato is to slice it and add it to a sandwich or top a burger.

I love to add fresh arugula or fresh basil leaves and a slice of mozzarella or provolone cheese, but a slice of tomato goes with just about any burger you've got planned.

Our House Cheeseburgers
If you're eating on our backyard patio, these are the cheeseburgers we're grilling up! Slightly seasoned with a hint of Dijon mustard in the patty keeps the beef burgers nice and juicy.
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A simple hamburger with provolone cheese and a sliced tomato on a blue plate.

Make a Classic BLT Sandwich

Classic BLT sandwiches are an essential summer recipe for excellent reason.

When tomatoes are at their peak, I love to slice thick, juicy heirloom tomatoes and layer them with peppered bacon and crispy lettuce on toasted Italian bread.

Fresh tomatoes are featured in several of my easy finger sandwich recipes, too.

Classic BLT Sandwich
The best BLT sandwich recipe starts with the best ingredients. Layer the best bread, tomatoes, bacon, and lettuce for the ultimate BLT.
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A perfect BLT sandwich sits on a white plate.

Make Caprese Salad

One of the biggest summer treats is a shimmering platter of caprese salad with fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, and a balsamic vinegar glaze.

You could serve this as an appetizer, side dish, or even make a whole meal out of it with a few of my serving tricks:

Caprese Salad
Tomato caprese salad is a classic Italian appetizer or side dish that is best made during summer when the tomatoes are at their peak season. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic glaze for an elegant dish.
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A sliced tomato, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, and balsamic glaze on a plate with a fork.

Make Tomato Bruschetta

One of the first things I think of when I see fresh tomatoes and fresh basil at the farmer's market is my favorite Italian bruschetta al pomodoro.

Bruschetta al Pomodoro
The classic Italian recipe, bruschetta al pomodoro, includes a toasted crostini topped with an easy tomato, basil, garlic topping. Drizzled with balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, this is a delicious appetizer to serve when tomatoes are at their peak.
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A plate of bruschetta pomodoro with a bowl of the tomato topping.

Top a Crostini

Chop up a rainbow assortment of cherry tomatoes and use them to sprinkle over savory crostini appetizers or even make a homemade bruschetta.

You could even top a crostini with my chicken pesto sandwich filling and then sprinkle the tomatoes over the top.

Easy Homemade Crostini
These mouthwatering toasted bread slices make the perfect base for a variety of appetizer dips and cheeseboards. Just minutes to perfectly tender crostini.
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Homemade toasted crostini slices sit on a cookie sheet fresh from the oven. They are golden brown.

Top a Tomato Pizza

Make a homemade bruschetta pizza with mozzarella cheese and a brush of olive oil.

Or chop up fresh tomatoes and sprinkle them on this crescent roll veggie pizza appetizer.

Bruschetta Pizza
Bruschetta pizza is a quick and easy dinner you can make with a pair of naan breads from the bakery department, a tub of bruschetta topping, and some shredded cheese. Serve it as a light dinner, an easy appetizer flatbread, or as part of a heartier meal.
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The bruschetta pizza is served on a white plate. Fresh tomatoes and basil are scattered over the top.

Toss Tomatoes into Pasta

Cherry tomatoes are my favorite vegetable to add to pesto, olive oil, or butter based pasta dishes.

You don't even need to cook the tomatoes to make this fresh tomato pasta toss.

Fresh Tomato Pasta
When fresh tomatoes are at their peak, this is the perfect summery pasta recipe. The heat from the pasta just warms the chopped cherry tomatoes to make a simple dinner.
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A white bowl is filled with thin spaghetti and fresh cherry tomatoes and arugula. Parmesan is sprinkled over the top.

This easy baked Boursin and tomato pasta starts with fresh cherry tomatoes in a baking dish with a wheel of Boursin cheese.

Baked Boursin and Tomato Pasta
Toss cherry tomatoes and a Boursin cheese round into a dish and bake it in the oven to make a simple pasta sauce for tortellini or other short pasta shape like penne or farfalle. A handful of baby spinach adds color and more veggies for a dinner you'll love to make on a busy weeknight.
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A bowl of tortellini is coated in a creamy boursin cheese sauce with tomatoes and spinach.

Add Tomatoes to Eggs

If you're making scrambled eggs, stir in some diced tomatoes right before they're finished cooking for added flavor. You could fold them into an omelet, too.

Use thick slices of tomato in my easy eggs benedict with deli ham and scrambled eggs.

I love to add a slice of tomato when I make deviled egg salad sandwiches.

Or for a low-carb, high protein lunch, make a snack tray with fresh cherry tomatoes, sliced hardboiled eggs, and a slice or two of cheese.

Easy Eggs Benedict
This delicious eggs benedict variation is so much easier to make than the original! Perfect for making a single serving or scaling for a large crowd for a special brunch menu. You can plate the assembled sandwiches or serve the elements family-style at the table.
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Add Fresh Tomatoes to a Salad

Slice cherry tomatoes in half and sprinkle them over your favorite fresh green salads.

They are especially wonderful with my spicy buffalo chicken salad.

Buffalo Chicken Salad
This spicy chicken salad makes a great low carb lunch idea but could be turned into an easy family dinner with a side of homemade bread or crunchy croutons.
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A bowl filled with green lettuce, topped with buffalo chicken salad, fresh tomatoes, and drizzled with buffalo sauce and blue cheese dressing sits in front of a serving bowl of lettuce with mason jars of dressing on the side.

Make a Tomato Salad

Or make a salad entirely of tomatoes!

My marinated tomatoes can be made with colorful cherry tomatoes or you could chop a variety of tomatoes into large chunks to toss with the marinade instead.

I serve this as an easy side dish at the table, it is great at room temperature. But you could also sprinkle these marinated tomatoes over grilled chicken or fish.

Marinated Tomatoes
These easy marinated tomatoes are a simple dinner side dish, salad topping, or perfect pasta salad base. Serve them with crostini for an appetizer or with cottage cheese for a healthy lunch.
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A big bowl of red and yellow cherry tomatoes have been sliced in half and marinated in an Italian dressing.

If you want to include other raw veggies with your tomatoes, you'll love my raw veggie salad with homemade croutons:

Raw Veggie Salad
A cold and crispy raw veggie salad tossed in a spicy pepper vinaigrette with savory croutons on top makes an excellent summer side dish for grilled chicken, fish, or pork. This travel-friendly recipe is perfect for bringing to a potluck party since nothing will spoil in the heat.
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A bowl of raw vegetables with croutons.

Dunk Tomatoes in a Dip

Make a snack tray with fresh cherry tomatoes and a cup of one of these yummy dips.

You could add crispy pita crackers or homemade croutons if you want to add crunch.

Dill Dip for Veggies
This easy dill dip for veggies or chips is a quick cold dip for serving at your next party. Delicious when paired with fresh baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, raw broccoli, and celery sticks.
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A bowl of dill dip has a baby carrot dipping in it. Cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs are on the platter behind it.
Tzatziki Sauce
This easy tzatziki sauce for gyros can also be used as a veggie dip or served with crispy pita chips for a cool and creamy appetizer.
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A blue bowl filled with homemade tzatziki sauce has fresh cherry tomatoes, pita chips for dipping, and a sprig of fresh dill.
Greek Yogurt Blue Cheese Dressing
This healthy blue cheese dressing is made with Greek yogurt and light mayonnaise. Packed with flavor, you only need a little drizzle to add amazing punch to your salad greens.
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A mason jar filled with homemade blue cheese dressing sits in front of a bowl full of lettuce.
Sour Cream Horseradish Sauce
Sour cream horseradish sauce for sandwiches is also great for dipping or spreading on roast beef, roasted salmon, or shrimp.
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Homemade sour cream horseradish sauce in a mason jar on a plate next to roast beef and cherry tomatoes for dipping.

Add Tomatoes to Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Embrace the southern tradition of making grilled pimento cheese sandwiches with thick slices of fresh tomatoes!

(Or just add fresh tomato to your own favorite grilled cheese sandwich.)

Homemade Pimento Cheese
This delicious classic pimento cheese spread is perfect for serving alongside a platter of buttery crackers or using as the base for a pimento cheese sandwich. Just a touch spicy with a little dash of sweetness, it is the perfect texture.
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A bowl of homemade pimento cheese is served on a plate with butter crackers.

Make a Tomato Pie

Layer fresh slices of tomato, pimento cheese, and crumbled bacon in this classic southern recipe for tomato pie:

Southern Tomato Pie
Classic southern tomato pie has layers of pimiento cheese and mayo with fresh heirloom tomatoes and basil. You can make it with or without the peppered bacon as long as you bake it in a buttery pie crust and top with fresh basil!
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A southern style tomato pie in a deep pie dish.

Roast Cherry Tomatoes

Inevitably, when you buy tomatoes as often as I do this time of year, you might discover your cherry tomatoes are starting to become a little overripe.

The perfect solution in this case is to make a pan of roasted cherry tomatoes. We love them so much that I often do this on purpose for adding to pasta dishes, but it is a great way to ensure you don't have a single fresh tomato go to waste!

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
One of the easiest vegetable side dishes ever, toss these roasted cherry tomatoes into pasta dishes, stir-frys, or serve them alongside your main entree as a side dish. The roasting makes them extra sweet and delicious.
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The roasted cherry tomatoes have been cooked on a large baking sheet.
A photo collage shows 4 delicious tomato recipes.

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