This Italian salad is super simple, yet offers an explosion of flavor in every single bite. My Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salad is perfect as a refreshing summertime side dish, or enjoy as a light meal. Another plus, it is low-carb and keto-friendly! Go support your local farmer’s market and pick up a variety of heirloom tomatoes in all different colors. Don’t forget the fresh basil while you are there!
Also, switch out balsamic glaze or traditional balsamic vinegar with a lighter golden balsamic. I was lucky enough to find this gem at my favorite Italian store, Dellalo. Golden balsamic is super crisp, but still has that sweet, complex flavor of traditional balsamic. I can assure you, you will fall in love! You can always go the “normal” route in the cooler months. However, if you can only find traditional balsamic, use it!
Make this Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salad in stacks, or deconstructed with heirloom cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella pearls. Either way, be sure to use fresh mozzarella cheese from Galbani!
Probably one of the best things about this recipe is that you do not have to cook anything! Right? It’s basically just a matter of assembling all of the super fresh ingredients.
However, I do believe there is somewhat of a method to making it all come together, just perfectly. Especially when it comes to the dressing. Always keep in mind, you can always add, but it’s super hard to take away. Basically, go easy on the oil and vinegar at first. Taste. Add more as needed, or desired.
HEIRLOOM TOMATO CAPRESE STACKS
It’s best to have all of the ingredients at the ready. This recipe will make two to three generous caprese stacks. As mentioned earlier, try to find a variety of heirloom tomatoes. I got lucky and found a few in green, orange and purplish-red. If you can’t, no worries. Use what you can get your hands on.
Cut the tomatoes just right. Not too thin. Not too thick. Lay one variety on a plate. Sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper. Depending on the size of the tomato, layer on one two to slices of fresh mozzarella cheese (cut about the same thickness, or slightly thicker than the tomatoes).
Drizzle on a touch of light olive oil. In keeping with the lightness and freshness of this caprese salad, I thought it best to use a lighter olive oil. If I was making this during the cooler months, I would be changing up to a more bold olive oil and traditional balsamic.
Continue layering with the other varieties of tomato slices, salt and pepper, mozzarella and light olive oil until you have made three layers. Drizzle on a bit of the golden balsamic. Use about one and one-half tablespoons per dish. Garnish with fresh chiffonades of basil and just a touch more kosher salt.
Serve immediately, or place in fridge. Be sure to allow the salad to come back to temperature if you decide to refrigerate. The oil may become a little thick in the cold.
Oh right? The plates. Aren’t they just gorgeous? I found these at HomeGoods. Click here for ones similar.
DECONSTRUCTED HEIRLOOM CHERRY TOMATO CAPRESE
This one is fun! Just throw everything into a bowl, and mix! Find a container of heirloom cherry tomatoes. Search your local farmer’s market. Most grocery stores even carry them now. Rinse well. Cut in half.
Place tomatoes in a bowl. Rinse the fresh mozzarella pearls. Add to the tomatoes. Sprinkle with kosher salt and black pepper. Mix in about half of the light olive oil and half of the golden balsamic. Taste. You will probably need to add the remaining. It’s really all about how you like your salads dressed. Taste for additional salt.
Garnish with fresh chiffonades of basil. Now for this one, I did give it my own little touch and sprinkled on a few pinches of crushed red pepper flakes. Totally optional. But, I suggest giving it a try!
Serve immediately, or refrigerate. Again, be sure to take out of the fridge long enough to allow the olive oil to come back to temperature.
ENJOY these Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salads both ways! Want to try something related, but totally out of the box? Check out my recipe for Fried Green Tomato Caprese Stacks!