Traditionally, caprese salad consists of fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and basil, seasoned with salt and pepper, then lightly dressed with extra-virgin olive oil. We know, you’re probably wondering where the balsamic reduction is. Don’t worry. We have that version, too, and you can even make this salad into an appetizer. This time, we’re making a Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad in the traditionally dressed style.
The trick to a great Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad is high-quality ingredients. Choose ripe, flavorful tomatoes, fresh basil, an EVOO you genuinely enjoy the flavor of, as well as fresh mozzarella. We like sweet, round cherry tomatoes and mozzarella pearls. They look pretty and take a fraction of the typical prep time. Also, they make it easier to prepare single-servings of this dish.Print
A traditionally dressed caprese salad using sweet cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella pearls.
- 1 container sweet cherry tomatoes, halved (these run 10–16 oz, so adjust remaining ingredients as needed)
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup fresh mozzarella pearls (depending on size of tomato container)
- 1/4 cup fresh thinly sliced fresh basil, more to taste if needed
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Generous pinch ground black pepper
- Scant pinch salt
- Strain and measure mozzarella pearls, reserving liquid in original container for extra cheese. Taste the mozzarella before adding salt to determine how much you will need.
- Add tomatoes and mozzarella pearls to a large bowl, drizzle with oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Toss gently and transfer to a serving bowl or individual dishes.
- Garnish with basil to taste and serve immediately.
Makes two servings as a main course or four as a side dish.
Keywords: caprese salad, cherry tomatoes, mozzarella pearls, light salad, lunch, Italian tomato salad