A classic Italian appetizer made with fresh tomatoes, garlic, and basil, this tomato bruschetta recipe is bright and delicious, and super easy to make! You’ll love it!
This is one of those classic recipes that should be a basic in everyone’s kitchen. Sometimes called Bruschetta Pomodoro or Bruschetta al Pomodoro, it’s often served in Italian restaurants (even Olive Garden probably has bruschetta on its menu!), but tomato bruschetta are so incredibly easy to make. Don’t wait until you go out for dinner to enjoy this classic appetizer when you can easily make it at home.
Forget the little toasted bread slices–I could slurp this stuff up with a spoon. Made with fresh chopped tomatoes, fresh basil, minced garlic, red onion, a splash of balsamic vinegar, and seasoned with salt and pepper, the bright flavors of this tomato bruschetta recipe just explode in your mouth. If you agree, you’ll also love my bruschetta orzo pasta salad.
But really, I’m just kidding about the bread. You don’t want to forget the bread. Serve the bruschetta drizzled over the crunchy golden bread slices, for the ultimate delicious, taste of summer in your mouth, appetizer.
Did you know? Bruschetta is pronounced: broo skeh tuh.
About this Classic Bruschetta Recipe:
You’ll want to use Roma tomatoes for this classic bruschetta. Why Roma tomatoes? They are meatier, have fewer seeds, and aren’t quite as juicy as a regular garden tomato. That being said, if you happen to have a different type of tomato in your kitchen, maybe even home grown, by all means use it. You may want to squeeze some of the seeds and juice out, if your tomatoes seem really juicy.
Chop the tomatoes up nice and small. Remember you’ll be serving this on little bread slices. If your tomato bruschetta has giant chunks in it, the topping will have a hard time staying on the bread.
Mince a little red onion and garlic and stir them into the tomatoes. Add olive oil, sliced fresh basil and a splash of balsamic and stir it all together. Season with a little salt and freshly ground pepper.
Then let it marinate for a while. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and just let it sit on your counter for at least a half hour or so. The flavors will blend together, and you can work on toasting the bread.
To serve, simply spread a spoonful of the tomato mixture on the toasted bread slices, making your own classic tomato bruschetta. Enjoy with a glass of chilled Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, or a crisp Rosé.
How to make this tomato bruschetta your own:
This is a pretty basic recipe. There are few things that you could do to make it your own, however.
- Leave out the balsamic vinegar. Many recipes do not use balsamic vinegar but I love the flavor it adds. If you’re not a fan, leave it out. You could also use a white balsamic vinegar to keep this from having a brown-ish appearance.
- Since I am a balsamic fan, I love tomato bruschetta with an extra drizzle of balsamic reduction or glaze.
- Skip or increase the amount of garlic, depending on how much of a garlic lover you are. You can also rub the crispy bread with a raw garlic clove while it’s still warm to really add a punch of garlic flavor.
- For a cheesy option, add fresh mozzarella cheese. You could dice it small and stir it in, or place a small slice on the toast before layering on the tomatoes. Or add shredded Parmesan cheese to the mixture (about 1/4 cup).
- Added finely chopped Kalamata olives.
- Instead of serving this tomato bruschetta on toasts, use it as a topping for pasta, like angel hair spaghetti. Or it would be fantastic served on this balsamic marinated chicken. In fact, check out my recipe for bruschetta chicken!
FAQs and Reheating and Storage Tips
Is bruschetta served warm or cold?
Tomato bruschetta is best served at room temperature. That’s not to say that you are prohibited from serving it warm or cold–it’s up to you, you’re the cook! I’m sure it would taste great any way you serve it.
How do you keep bruschetta from getting soggy?
Well, bruschetta does get soggy if it sits on the toasts for more than a half hour or so. My solution? I like to serve the tomato mixture and the toasted bread slices separately. Let your guests make their own. Tomato bruschetta really are the best if you make them right before you pop them into your mouth.
Should you refrigerate bruschetta?
If you are making your tomato bruschetta recipe more than 2 hours in advance, I would refrigerate the mixture in an airtight container. If you are planning on doing this, don’t put the basil in until you’re ready to serve the bruschetta, to retain the bright green color. Let the bruschetta come to room temperature before serving.
Can you freeze bruschetta?
I haven’t tried freezing it, but Google tells me you could make it and freeze it up to 8 months. I would leave out the basil, and add fresh basil after you thaw it. However, since fresh tomatoes are available pretty much year round, it’s best if you just make this fresh. Nothing beats the fresh flavors of this combination, and it’s really quite easy to make.
Love the bright flavor of tomatoes?
I have a few more tomato appetizers I’m sure you’ll want to try:
- 1 loaf French bread, made into crostini
- 1 1/2 pounds Roma tomatoes, seeds removed, diced small (about 8 tomatoes)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced or minced fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- ½ teaspoon minced garlic (about 1 clove), or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- In a large mixing bowl, combine tomatoes, basil, olive oil, onion, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Cover, and let tomato mixture stand at room temperature for 30 minutes for flavors to combine.
- Bread instructions here!
- When ready to serve, spoon tomato mixture on top of bread and serve immediately.
- If needed, you may refrigerate for up to an hour before serving. Serve at room temperature. If you want the basil to be brighter green and not brown, wait to add it until immediately before serving.
- If you love balsamic, try drizzling these with balsamic reduction or glaze (link).
- You can also add 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese to add a cheesy twist to this classic bruschetta.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
Husband’s take: Ben’s a fan, too! We often order it at restaurants as well because it’s an appetizer we can always agree on.
Changes I would make: None are necessary but have fun with some of the ideas I mentioned above!