Tomato mozzarella salad plate garnished with basil and balsamic
Food,  Other,  Recipes

Tomato Mozzarella Salad Plate – Making Caprese Salad with Cherry tomatoes

This tomato mozzarella salad recipe  is luscious to look at and super easy to make.  It’s often called a Caprese Salad and is the perfect way to keep summer meal time light and tasty.

Tomato mozzarella salad with basil

Why is this tomato plate called Caprese Salad?

In Italian the words are “insulata caprese.”  The literal meaning of the Italian words are “salad of Capri.”  Cooking legend has it that the salad originated in the 1950’s on the Isle of Capri in the Campania region of Italy.

Traditionally, this salad is made with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes and olive oil, which has been garnished with oregano and arugula. Today we’ll be adding basil and balsamic vinegar and doing a play on the tomatoes by using several different types for color and texture.

What Should you Serve with a Caprese Salad?

Since this salad already has both vegetables and protein in good portions, it is almost a complete meal.  Adding a starch like a whole grain crusty bread would round out the texture component part of a meal and still keep it light and healthy. Add in a glass of white wine and you will have a really tasty and light Italian meal.

Caprese Salad also makes a great first course for a heavier Italian meal, such as pasta, spaghetti or chicken piccata.

A Healthy Salad that is Perfect for Summer

I love summer.  It brings warm weather, beach days, fun adventures and lot and LOTS of fresh produce – including my favorite item – tomatoes!  I used to work at a restaurant that had a lovely tomato plate on the menu in the summer.  

I would always look forward to the beginning of June, because right as school was letting out, that tomato mozzarella plate was making an appearance in my life.

Caprese Salad plates

Since I don’t work at that restaurant anymore and I don’t have access to that tomato plate, I decided to make my own.  One of my favorite things about cooking at home is the fact that I save SO much money.

I did my budget the other month and was astounded by the amount of money I spend on eating out or grabbing drink with friends.  This month I’ve made a really conscious effort to eat at home to save money.

Plus eating at home lets me make really healthy meals.  Restaurants add so many extra ingredients (and calories) to their dishes.  I can make the same thing at home for a fraction of the price and a fraction of the calories!

Beef steak tomatoes, cherry tomatoes and basil

Super foods are great for your health

Did you know that tomatoes are considered a super food? Not only do they contain lycopene, an antioxidant that is helpful in preventing heart disease but they also have lots of Vitamin A, C and E – also helpful to our health.

I love cooking with superfoods because I know I’m feeding my body foods it really wants.   Many superfoods are also very colorful and we all know the expression that “we eat with our eyes first!”

ingredients for Caprese salad

Often a Caprese salad is made with just sliced whole tomatoes. I’m mixing it up a bit today by using them along with heirloom baby tomatoes.  This will add lots of color and flavor to the tomato mozzarella salad. (plus I love them!)

Be sure check out my sourdough baguette recipe for another use of heirloom tomatoes! It is another easy recipe that is super pretty to look at.

Making this tomato mozzarella salad recipe

I am so excited to share this superfood-packed recipe with you!  Plus, not only does it contain my favorite superfood, but it is also super easy to make.  Which, if you read my blog, you know that is one of my favorite ways to cook – by developing easy recipes.  Honestly guys, this one is so easy a kid could make it!

  • 2 Large Tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Baby Cherry Heirloom Tomatoes 
  • 2 Oz Mozzarella cheese crumbled into small pieces (can also use feta cheese or goat cheese)
  • 1 Handful of Fresh Basil
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper, to Garnish

plate of tomatoes ready for a Caprese saladFirst thinly slice your large tomatoes and arrange them on a plate.  I like to fan them out so they fill the entire plate. This makes the base of the Caprese salad.

sliced tomatoes on a plate

Then slice your cherry tomatoes in half and scatter them on top of the sliced tomatoes.  I love using baby cherry heirloom tomatoes because the colors are so vibrant and they look beautiful!

sliced tomatoes and mozzarella cheese

Drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Then crumble the mozzarella on top. This adds even more color and texture.

easy caprese salad

Top with freshly chopped basil.  I picked mine out of my herb garden and rinsed it off, then chopped it and sprinkled it on top!  Garnish with salt and pepper and enjoy!

Don’t make the mistake of using dried basil. It is much more bitter and you want the taste of fresh basil.  If you don’t grow your own, it’s found at most grocery stores now as well as Wholesale shopping clubs, such as Sams Club.

Tomato and mozzarella salad recipe

If you’re having these tomato plates as a snack or an appetizer, I’d say the recipe serves two.  BUT feel free to make one giant plate for lunch or dinner.  Maybe even add some grilled chicken to make it a little more filling for a main dish!

Tomato mozzarella and basil salad

I am obsessed with this meal and could probably eat it every day!  The flavors are so fresh, and the ingredients are so simple.  I love dishes that have a ton of flavor and take virtually no time to make!  This recipe is under 10 minutes!

Tomato and mozzarella Caprese salad

This recipe would be perfect to bring to any summer party!  Since it’s so easy to make you won’t have to spend lots of time preparing it, which is helpful if you get invited to a last minute party!  Plus everyone will love the fresh flavors in the dish.  

And with all the holidays in the summer – Memorial day, 4th of July, etc – it’s good to have a quick and easy recipe on hand!

Mozzarella Caprese Salad

I mean just look at that picture and tell me you aren’t drooling over that tomato plate!  I’m so happy I could share one of my go-to summer staple recipes with you.  I’ve eaten this dish SO MANY times.  In fact, probably too many times to count!  

Tomato Caprese Salad

I hope you love this fresh summer tomato recipe, and if you have any yummy tomato recipes to share, please drop a link in the comments.  I’m always looking to try new ways to use tomatoes!!

Calories in this Tomato Mozzarella Salad Recipe

This is one of my favorite healthy salad recipes.  It has only 210 calories and 9 grams of protein and is low in both sodium and cholesterol. Most of the calories come from the olive oil and cheese, so if you lose less, it is even more healthy!

Looking for another way to use heirloom tomatoes and basil?  This recipe for Burrata and Heirloom Tomatoes is another cheese + tomato combination that I think is a real winner!

Pin this Caprese Salad for Later

Would you like a reminder of this tomato mozzarella salad? Just pin this image to one of your cooking boards on Pinterest so that you can easily find it later.Tomato Mozzarella Salad Recipe

Yield: 2

Tomato Mozzarella Salad Recipe

Tomato Mozzarella Salad Recipe

This healthy tomato mozzarella salad recipe is super easy to make and looks wonderful on a plate. Make it with heirloom tomatoes for even more color!

Prep Time 7 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 Large Tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes (I used heirloom tomatoes)
  • 2 Oz Mozzarella cheese
  • 3 tablespoons of Fresh Basil
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • dash of Salt and Pepper, to Garnish

Instructions

  1. Thinly slice your large tomatoes and arrange them on a plate.
  2. Slice your cherry tomatoes in half and scatter them on top of the sliced tomatoes.
  3. Drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Then crumble the pieces of mozzarella on top.
  4. Top with freshly chopped basil.
  5. Garnish with salt and pepper and enjoy!

Notes

Feta cheese or goat cheese can also be used in this salad.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 210 Total Fat: 14g Saturated Fat: 5g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 8g Cholesterol: 22mg Sodium: 270mg Carbohydrates: 14g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 10g Protein: 9g
Nutritional information is approximate due to natural variation in ingredients and the cook-at-home nature of our meals.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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