Tomatoes for summer? Groundbreaking. But Meryl Streep jokes aside, it really is a delicious time to be alive. Growing up, I never thought much of raw tomatoes—I didn’t avoid them, per se, but I never went out of my way to seek them out. I thought it was because I just didn’t like them but really, I just wasn’t eating great tomatoes. Eventually, I learned about heirloom tomatoes (ever heard of ’em?!) and then later in life, traveled to Italy where I ate fresh tomatoes daily during peak season. Now, I’ll practically eat them like an apple (try and stop me!). I put the red (or green or yellow or orange or brown-ish!) fruit to work with these 45 tomato recipes all summer long.
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Who knew that three ingredients plus barely any active work equaled the most nuanced, buttery tomato sauce out there? Don’t forget bread on the side, for dipping.
Pasta brings its own sauce to the party when it cooks at the same time as cherry tomatoes, onions, garlic, and a few other friends.
Tomatoes (and tomato paste) deepen the flavor of the eggplant sauce that tops this fresh corn polenta.
A little garlic and basil—plus bread, for sopping—make fresh tomatoes their best selves.
Ripe tomatoes, spaghetti, garlic, basil, and butter join forces for a speedy weeknight pasta that tastes anything but simple.
This genius ratatouille is equally perfect hot or cold, plated nicely or eaten straight from the baking dish (you know, moments after your guests leave).
This iconic no-knead dough gets topped with fresh, peeled Roma tomatoes—which, yes, you get to squeeze with your hands till they’re broken down into a sauce.
Ina’s creamy sauce stars canned tomatoes and has a clever secret for getting them deeply jammy: oven-roasting.
Good luck finding a speedier—or more delicious—baked pasta.
A ripe tomato gets roasted below a hot broiler until blistered, then adds lots of body to this smoky soup.
Cornbread makes an appearance in this tomatoey, panzanella-like salad—oh, and the whole thing gets topped with grilled sausage.
This spicy tomato soup is vegan, requires just five ingredients (psst: you probably already have them), and comes together in just about the time it’ll take to decide your next Netflix binge-watch.
Leave it to Marcella (yeah, we’re on a first-name basis) to make the list twice, this time with a tomatoey braised celery you’re going to want to top with a crispy fried egg.
This pasta is pretty much a highlight reel of all the best sauces, smooshed together: tomato, carbonara, and asparagus.
Meet the life-changing ragu you can make completely ahead—like, up to two full days beforehand.
In a weird, wacky turn of events, this incredible Big Little Recipe is essentially a deconstructed version of my favorite lunch: tomato soup and grilled cheese. Which is to say, tomatoes (you pick the kind you want!) are sautéed until sizzling, then covered in grated cheddar cheese.
This recipe strays a bit from Grandma’s old-fashioned tomato soup, thanks to the use of so. much. garlic. But it’s still so easy to make—roast an onion, garlic, herbs, red chile pepper, and cherry tomatoes in the oven until charred, then blend with coconut milk and vegetable stock.
Don’t be intimidated by the idea of grilling tomatoes—sure, it seems like they’ll probably fall apart under the heat but with recipe developer Ali Slagle’s careful instructions, you’ll have a delicious summer appetizer on your table in no time.
These juicy, blistered tomatoes are endlessly versatile—fold them into pasta, smash them over toast smeared with ricotta or goat cheese, or sprinkle them over pizza.
When you’re crunched for time, quickly cooking pasta with jarred sauce seems like the best option for dinner. But you don’t need to sacrifice flavor for the sake of time with this quick and easy recipe made with three kinds of tomatoes—tomato paste, oil-packed, sun-dried tomatoes, and canned cherry tomatoes.
Heirloom tomatoes are something special—from their crisp-juicy dual texture to their varied hues, they instantly make something like labneh (an already appealing spread, I might add) so much more appealing.
It’s a WFH summer lunch! A picnic lunch! A too-hot-to-turn-on-the-stove lunch! A kids-are-home-from-summer-camp lunch! A tomato galore lunch! No matter what you call it, you’ll want a slice.
This is a brilliant use of tomatoes that are on their last legs. All you need are Roma tomatoes, olive oil, sea salt, and a little bit (or a lot! You pick!) of ground coriander—toss ‘em, roast ‘em, and enjoy ‘em for a few bonus days.
The beauty of cooking in-season tomatoes is that you don’t need to go crazy trying to dress them up—all it takes is brown butter and flaky sea salt, says Food52 founder Amanda Hesser.
This Big Little Recipe from Emma Laperruque offers big flavor only—and yet, it’s so simple you can carry all of the ingredients in two hands (that is, if you tuck the soy sauce bottle between your pointed finger and thumb, carry a stick of salted butter between your middle and ring fingers, balance a pint of cherry tomatoes in your palm, and tuck a couple of garlic heads between the crevice of your elbow).
You don’t really need a recipe to make a Caprese salad (if you’re struggling, just search for an image of the Italian flag and that’s all you need to know). However, we love the visual inspo from this hasselback-style salad. “Just nestle creamy mozzarella into a ripe, scored tomato, then top with fresh basil and a crunchy, spicy chile oil,” says recipe developer Marissa Mullen.
Bookmark this for summer weekends when you have time to make your own puff pastry from scratch (you don’t need to, but frankly, you should).
There’s a little bit of everything happening in this made-for-summer salad: crispy chickpeas, juicy tomatoes, spicy mayo, and melt-in-your-mouth shreds of cheddar cheese.
Calm down, apples, you’ll have your time to shine in just a few months. For now, we’re switching
The classic BLT got a major glow-up, due in part to a bacon-avocado aioli (you heard me) and the absolute best tomatoes you can find. No pressure.
Grain salads tend to call for quite the extensive list of ingredients, which frankly makes me not want to cook one. This is not that. Start with pre-cooked farro (or go ahead and use quinoa if, like me, farro makes you too bloated to hang), broil it until crispy, then sprinkle it over a platter of tomatoes with Parmesan, parsley, and lemon zest.
“The wild card ingredient in this recipe is chaat masala, the funky, salty spice blend that brings this simple tomato-cheese toast to an entirely different level,” writes recipe developer Priya Krishna. This not-so-secret ingredient is a welcome and necessary addition to the always dependable tomato toast.
You know you’re going to stack tomatoes on a slice of homemade focaccia anyway, so why not get ahead of the game and press them directly into the dough?
Every summer picnic requires a bucket of cold drinks, a very Dad playlist, a tomato salad, and a peach salad. This recipe offers a 2:1 special, combining the two fruits into one incredible dish.
35. Tomato Choka
A hybrid of East Indian and Caribbean dishes, this spicy tomato dish can be eaten any way you’d like—spoon it over burgers, eat it by the spoon, or serve it as a dip.
Don’t be intimidated by this uber-chic preparation of stuffed tomatoes filled with ground pork, bread crumbs, mushrooms, and herbs—it’s actually super simple to make!
Admittedly, I haven’t made this recipe yet but I already know it’s going to be my new favorite dinner because of two words: crispy. gnocchi.
You don’t need to spend days, weeks, or even months pickling produce. Five minutes is all it takes to quick-pickle cherry tomatoes with fennel seeds, nigella seeds, cumin seeds, black mustard seeds, and fenugreek seeds, plus a little bit of lime juice.
Give tomatoes and basil a life beyond pasta—here, they’re sautéed in a mustardy brown butter sauce, which is served with baked salmon.
There are no surprises hiding in this tomatoey pasta salad—what you see is what you get (feta cheese, fresh mint, orzo, green beans, and tomatoes). And yet, the superior summer flavors will still catch you by surprise.
I know, I know, we’ve been over this already. Grilling tomatoes seems really scary but I promise you it’s not (and if a few fall through the cracks, well that’ll just give your charcoal even more flavor on the next go around).
When you’re looking for a classic Italian interpretation of tomatoes, basil, and garlic, this pasta dish is it.
When tomato and corn seasons overlap, make this 20-minute pasta dish.
Shrimp pasta is always good, but rarely inspiring; this one will transform hearts, minds, and bellies. “This recipe calls for tiny tomatoes, fresh basil, and choose-your-own chile paste (plus butter and salt). The result is spicy, saucy, and deeply savory,” writes recipe developer Emma Laperruque.
Have some fun with a bevy of summer vegetables like tomatoes, zucchini, and Italian peppers in this egg recipe.