15 Best Fresh Tomato Recipes

Got fresh tomatoes? We’ve got recipes. Here are our top fresh tomato recipes to take advantage of those juicy, ripe beauties.

Fresh tomato recipes

Tomato season is one of our favorite times of year. With their sweet savory nuanced flavor, all you need is a few simple ingredients to make them taste extraordinary. When it’s tomato season, we make all the fresh tomato recipes! Because it’s only a period of months, Alex and I take every opportunity we get, making tomato salads, caprese salad, BLTs, pasta, pico de gallo, salsa: everything we can think to enjoy all that summer has to offer.

Here we’ve collected our 15 best fresh tomato recipes for the season: and we know you’re going to love them. But first: a few things about fresh tomatoes:

How to find the best tomatoes

For all of these recipes, you’ll need the following: ripe, in season tomatoes! Bonus points if they’re locally grown — or if you grew them yourself! Buying local tomatoes helps support your local farmers: so if there’s a chance to do so, we heartily recommend it. Please do not even think about using off-season, mealy pink tomatoes. The flavor here is 100% dependent on the quality of your tomato!

If you can find them, try using heirloom tomatoes from your local farmer’s market. What are heirloom tomatoes? Heirloom tomatoes are a variety that has been passed down, through several generations of a family by saving the seeds. When you buy heirloom tomatoes, you’ll notice that their color and shape are much more varied than the typical round red tomato. They can vary from chartreuse to gold to purple to orange, from small and round to large and squat.

How to tell if a tomato is ripe

Now, how can you tell if a tomato is ripe? There is actually some contention around the right way of how to tell if a tomato is ripe. According to The Washington Post, squeezing tomatoes can actually damage them! To avoid damaging the tomato, especially ones from your local small farmers at the farmers market, do the following:

  • Smell it. The tomato should give off a sweet, earthy smell.
  • Hold it. Hold it in your hand: a ripe tomato should feel heavy for its size.

Now on to the fresh tomato recipes!

Here are our 15 favorite ways to use fresh tomatoes.

Need more fresh tomato recipes?

That wasn’t enough? Here are a few more where that came from:

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

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