It's time for your taste buds to celebrate because summer salad season is finally here. One of our go-to dishes for this glorious period is a heavenly Caprese salad. Not only will we walk you through a classic version of this legendary fare, but we'll share some easy variations to please any crowd. Prepare to maximize your savory summer vibes!

sliced tomatoes, basil, and mozarella

A Winning Classic Caprese

A well-executed Caprese is a powerful weapon in your seasonal foodie arsenal and can be enjoyed time and time again. And as an added bonus, this simple recipe requires minimal kitchen gadgets.

What You'll Need

  • fruit & veggie wash or spray
  • Chef's knife
  • cutting board
  • colander or strainer
  • large plate or wooden cutting board, for serving
  • tongs, for serving
multi-colored heirloom tomatoes

Ingredients

  • heirloom tomatoes (multi-colored if possible), 3-4 large ones or 1 package of heirloom cherry tomatoes
  • fresh mozzarella, about 1 lb. (we prefer a package of Ovolini)
  • fresh cracked black pepper
  • salt (we prefer pink Himalayan sea salt)
  • 1 bunch fresh basil
  • olive oil (basil-infused if possible)

Instructions

Step #1: Rinse your ingredients

Rinse the tomatoes in fruit and veggie wash (we recommend Rebel Green Fruit & Veggie Clean, available at Target, Walmart, and local health food stores). The most effective method is to place them in a colander under running water and rotate until adequately rinsed. Basil should be carefully rinsed in this fashion as well.

Step 2: Prep the tomatoes

If you chose large heirloom tomatoes, carefully cut them into slices, about 1/3 or ΒΌ inch thick. If you chose cherry tomatoes, you may leave them whole or cut them in half. Set aside.

Step 3: Hand pull the mozzarella

Rip the cheese into bite-sized pieces. Set aside

basil, mozzarella, and tomatoes

Step 4: Herbalicious

Pat the rinsed basil dry with a paper towel. Remove stems by hand, then rough chop the remaining leaves with a knife. Set aside.

Step 5: Dish it up

Place the tomatoes and cheese on the serving piece, alternating every other. Top with fresh basil, salt, and pepper to taste.

Step 6: Drizzle time

Immediately before serving, lightly drizzle the olive oil over the Caprese salad.

Step 7: Enjoy!

Place the serving tongs with the salad, and dive into the finished dish.

caprese skewer

Variety is the Spice of Life

Read on to check out our favorite twists on classic Caprese salad.

Bite-sized Caprese skewers:

For picnics, potlucks, and the like, our skewers variation will make you the most popular guest at any gathering. See our featured recipe here for a step-by-step guide!

Balsamic for the win:

To add an extra hit of sweetness and acidity, you may drizzle balsamic vinegar or balsamic reduction after the olive oil. This adds another depth of flavor to an already impeccable dish.

Rough chop:

Instead of the neatly and thinly-sliced Caprese above, another option is to rough chop the tomatoes for a less homogenous look.

We hope you try our classic Caprese recipe or some fun alternatives this summer!

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