This recipe for tomato mozzarella bruschetta is easy to prepare and can be made in advance, making it the perfect appetizer, light lunch, or meal accompaniment.
When the tomatoes and basil from our garden are on repeat, we eat a lot of caprese and bruschetta during the summer. It is such a simple way to use the fresh bounty from our garden.
Caprese v Bruschetta
Let’s quickly chat about the difference between caprese and bruschetta.
Caprese is an Italian tomato salad made with fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil.
Bruschetta is toasted or grilled bread (typically a rustic Italian bread or ciabatta) topped with tomatoes, beans, cheese, or cured meats.This tomato mozzarella bruschetta is basically chopped caprese bruschetta! You get all the goodness of the fresh ingredients with the caprese and the added enjoyment of it on golden brown, rustic, warm bread.
Is your mouth watering yet?
This mozzarella bruschetta recipe is a perfect example that the most simple ingredients can combine to make something utterly delicious. We typically eat this bruschetta or caprese with Brothy Beans; it makes me feel like I’m enjoying a traditional meal on a back patio somewhere in Tuscany!
Let’s talk Garlic
I’m starting to wonder if I may be part Vampire; the older I am, the less I enjoy raw garlic. I find that with raw garlic, all I taste is…the garlic! This recipe tempers the raw garlic taste by cooking it lightly in olive oil. The garlic is discarded, leaving you with just a lovely garlic-flavored oil that is tossed with the tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella. It makes these other ingredients shine as opposed to overwhelming them.
That said, I am the only raw garlic-averse person in my family. The rest of my garlic lovers will rub a piece of raw garlic on the bread before adding the tomato mixture to get that bite that only garlic can give. It is just my personal preference to have garlic be a little more mellow.
Let’s Talk Tomatoes
Really, any tomato will work here. BUT, with Roma or plum tomatoes, you will be able to use all the tomato instead of having to discard most of it. Grape tomatoes and cherry tomatoes are largely pulp, which you will want to remove. But, you do you!
Let’s Talk Mozzarella Cheese
So, I love Fresh Mozzarella Cheese as much as the next person, if not more! But, the part-skim, low moisture mozzarella cheese works well here because it doesn’t add water to the caprese topping. You are working so hard to remove the water from the tomatoes it is a little silly to add it back with the mozzarella. But once again, this is your mozzarella bruschetta so have at it!
Let’s Talk Olive Oil
Good Olive Oil is everything! Save your best olive oils for recipes like this Tomato Mozzarella Bruschetta, where the olive oil can shine.
We got you! Most grocery stores are starting to carry good gluten-free bread. Find the closest thing you can to an Italian or Ciabatta, and it’ll be perfect under that tomato mozzarella goodness!
- 1 pound fresh tomatoes (Romas work well, but any tomato will work. If using Romas, about 6-7 whole tomatoes is enough)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
- 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced (plus more if you want to rub it on your bread)
- 8 ounces mozzarella (low-moisture)
- 12 fresh basil leaves
- A loaf of rustic baguette, Italian, or Ciabatta bread, sliced.
- 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar (optional for Balsamic Glaze)
For Mozzarella Bruschetta
- Wash the tomatoes. If you aren't using Roma tomatoes, scoop out the seeds and pulp.
- Using a sharp knife, finely dice tomatoes. Aim for between 1/4" and 1/2" inch. It will make the bruschetta easier to eat if the tomatoes are small pieces.
- Toss the tomatoes with the salt and let sit in a colander over a bowl in the refrigerator for 2 hours. This will help the tomatoes release their liquid so that your bruschetta is not soggy.
- While tomatoes are sitting in the fridge, heat up the olive oil in a small pan over low heat.
- Add the minced garlic and slowly cook the garlic for about 5 minutes. Watch it closely and remove it from the heat if you notice the garlic starts to brown.
- Set the garlic and oil aside to cool down.
- When you are ready to prepare the bruschetta, place the bread slices in a single layer on a large baking sheet in a 350° oven or toaster oven. Toast until golden brown.
- While the bread is toasting, remove the tomatoes from the refrigerator and place them in a bowl.
- Roll the basil leaves into a cigar shape and then slice into ribbons, add the ribbons to the tomatoes.
- Cube the mozzarella so it's about the same size as the tomatoes and add to the tomato mixture.
- Spoon the garlic oil over the tomato mixture. You may not want to use all of it. I'd stop at about half of the oil and taste. Add in tablespoon increments until you like the taste.
- Remove bread from toaster and top with the tomato mozzarella mixture. For the garlic lovers in your home, cut a piece of fresh garlic in half and rub the cut half over the toasted bread slices before you top it with the tomato mixture.
- Add more basil ribbons, as desired.
- If desired, give your bruschetta a drizzle of balsamic glaze before serving.
For Balsamic Glaze (optional)
- In a small pot over medium heat, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and let simmer until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. The glaze will continue to thicken as it cools.
The tomato topping is best enjoyed the day you cut the tomatoes, but it will still be good the next day.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 5 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 569Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 36mgSodium: 1260mgCarbohydrates: 61gFiber: 3gSugar: 11gProtein: 22g
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