Easy Marinated Tomato Salad – What can you do with lots of fresh tomatoes? Make a tomato salad! You only need 6 ingredients to make these delicious balsamic marinated tomatoes. Serve them as a fresh side, or use them as a topping for all kinds of goodies! (Vegan, Paleo, Whole30)
I’m all about easy recipes lately! I’ve been putting extra emphasis on anything I that packs a big flavor punch without a lot of fuss–things like a good salsa, tangy dressing, yummy sauce, or simple marinade that can wake up a meal in minutes.
The focus on easy recipes extends to side dishes too, lately. We’ve been doing lots of steam-in-the-bag broccoli, quick-roasted potatoes, and simple side salads that breathe life into any meal. This balsamic marinated tomato salad is a go-to lately.
Dressing fresh tomatoes up with our quick dressing & fresh herbs is an easy way to make tomatoes taste even more delicious. They make a beautiful side dish next to grilled chicken, simple sausage, steak, and more, or they can be a beautiful component of a meal paired with bread to soak up all those lovely juices, or a delightful topping to finish a dish.
Would you believe you only need a handful of ingredients to get started? Here’s what you need to make our balsamic marinated tomatoes…
This Tomato Salad Recipe, At A Glance:
Here’s What You Need To Make Marinated Tomatoes:
- Tomatoes. Most kinds of tomatoes work great for marinating, though I find smaller tomatoes, like grape tomatoes and cherry tomatoes maintain their texture best. See the FAQ below for other options to try!
- Olive Oil. I recommend the best quality that fits in your budget. We love the olive oils from Queen Creek Olive Mill! (Their Balanced oil is one of our favorites, but their Fresh Crush Basil is also delightful here!)
- Balsamic Vinegar. Similarly, I recommend whatever brand fits your budget. We like Queen Creek Olive Mill’s!
- Fresh Herbs. You can mix and match herbs here or use all of one kind. We like basil, chives, and oregano best, but you can change the flavor by adding cilantro or parsley!
- Garlic. I love the frozen garlic cubes because they’re VERY finely minced, which means no large pieces. If you like a more rustic texture, feel free to dice or slice it yourself!
- Salt & Pepper. Key for excellent marinated tomatoes. Salt especially will make or break a tomato salad, so don’t skimp!
How To Make A Balsamic Tomato Salad, Step By Step:
- Slice The Tomatoes. If you haven’t already, slice your tomatoes. Cut baby or grape tomatoes in half, and cut larger tomatoes into quarters or even sixths, if larger.
- Add sliced tomatoes to a large bowl
- Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
- Add fresh herbs, garlic, 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper
- Gently stir to combine and coat the tomatoes well.
- Serve immediately, if needed, or chill in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 30-60 minutes, up to 1 day. Ideally, taste the tomatoes once before serving, and add more salt and pepper, as needed.
More Mix-Ins To Try:
To change things up, try mixing in…
- Diced avocado
- Sliced cucumber
- Red onion (sliced)
- Mini mozzarella balls
Yummy Ways To Serve Marinated Tomato Salad:
As A Side Dish. The easiest (and most common) way I serve marinated tomato salad is as a side dish. It’s lovely next to chicken or steak, and it pairs beautifully with lots of goodies off of the grill in the summer.
Spooned Over Grilled Chicken. This fresh balsamic tomato salad dresses up grilled chicken in a flash. Bonus points if your chicken has a balsamic marinade or Italian herbs!
With Cottage Cheese or Ricotta. Add a burst of flavor to a little bowl of cottage cheese, or pair it with ricotta. The tomato + basil + cheese combo is a classic!
As Bruschetta Topping. Similarly, you can pair our balsamic tomato salad with toasted garlic bread or spoon it on top of slices of toasted baguette for an easy appetizer or side dish.
On Avocado Toast. Level up your avocado toast by finishing it off with these balsamic marinated tomatoes. The flavors are a match made in heaven!
Tucked Into Sandwiches. Try adding marinated tomatoes to a big sandwich. Some good combos to try:
- Turkey, lettuce, marinated tomatoes, and pesto or seasoned mayo.
- Grilled cheese + marinated tomatoes. (You won’t be sorry!)
- Mozzarella cheese + spinach + marinated tomatoes
FAQ + Tips And Tricks For The Best Marinated Tomatoes
How Long Do You Need To Marinate Tomatoes? Even 30 minutes will give you long enough for the flavor to develop somewhat, but 1-2 hours is best for the most vibrant flavor and best texture.
Should Marinated Tomatoes Be Refrigerated? Yes! Once you’ve sliced tomatoes, they should be refrigerated for food safety. In a marinated tomato salad recipe like this one, chilling in the fridge is the primary way they develop their flavor.
How Long Does Tomato Salad Last? The marinade will break down the structure of the tomatoes a bit, so it will get more juicy and salsa-like as time goes on. Tomato salad will be at its best within the first 1-2 days, but can last up to 3 if you don’t mind it being softer and juicier.
What Tomato Is Best For Salad? Many varieties work well! Campari and Roma tomatoes are easy to find, heirloom tomatoes add gorgeous color, and grape and cherry tomatoes have a sturdier texture that can hold up well with marinating.