Caprese Bruschetta (Bruschetta Caprese) is the best appetizer ever. Simple to make, quick and easy to bring together and with fresh Italian flavours, it is the perfect Sunday brunch recipe. This tomato mozzarella bruschetta shines brightly when served with a drizzle of zingy balsamic glaze!!
The simple tomato mixture, fresh basil and crusty bread will tick ALL of your boxes! And you can use the Basil and Cashew Pesto recipe if you like to make your own pesto!
🤍 Recipe Highlights
I have highlighted everything you will come to know and love ❤ about this recipe in the points below (they are many great things to enjoy!):
- This is a quick and easy recipe! Perfect to serve as an appetizer, brunch or light lunch!
- Caprese is an Italian salad featuring fresh basil a tomato mix and mozzarella (or bocconcini).
- Caprese Pesto Pasta Salad is a spin on the traditional with the addition of pesto and pasta and the omission of the balsamic glaze or vinegar.
- Often served with extra virgin olive oil or a balsamic reduction it is known for its use of traditional ingredients, such as fresh mozzarella which has an easily identifiable flavour.
- We take the notion of the Caprese salad for our bruschetta, toast up some rye sourdough, add a layer of basil pesto and drizzle with a zingy balsamic glaze! It is a seriously sensational combination of ingredients that make home cooking taste just like the streets of Italy!
The ingredients for this recipe are simple and easy to find at the local shops. They are set out in the photo below so you can see exactly what you need. Please refer to the printable recipe card for specific measurements and detailed instructions.
As you can see, the recipe calls for:
- cherry tomatoes: we use these both for flavour and texture. They add a great pop of red and contrast really well with the fresh basil, creating a visually appealing dish as well as one with a great depth of flavour.
- basil leaves: fresh basil has a lovely aroma to it and is delicious to use in many recipes. A must have ingredient for Italian bruschetta!
- mozzarella: you will likely find this cheese called bocconcini in small ball form in a tub with brine. It has a very mild taste and helps form the perfect combination of flavours needed for our bruschetta appetizer
- rye bread: you don't have to use the same bread I am using in the photos. You can use your favourite or make mini Caprese crostini toasts for a spin on the larger slices of bread!
- salt and pepper: these help to season the tomato mixture
- olive oil is essential in Italian Caprese for both its light fragrant smell and pairing with the tomato, basil and cheese
- balsamic glaze: is the perfect drizzle for our tomato mozzarella and basil bruschetta as it ties all of the other ingredients together
Here are the step by step instructions to make easy Caprese bruschetta. We start by toasting the bread in the oven.
- Slice the bread (Photo 1)
- Lay the slices on a baking tray (Photo 2)
- Spray the bread with cooking oil (Photo 3)
- Add the basil to a mixing bowl and roughly chop (Photo 4)
The fresh basil leaves only need a few chops with kitchen scissors, rough and loose is fine! The spray olive oil helps give the bread the crunch factor!
👩🍳 How to Make Caprese Bruschetta
Making the bruschetta is as simple as toasting some bread, spreading it with basil pesto, combining simple salad ingredients and loading the salad onto the bruschetta. It is then optional to drizzle it with balsamic glaze.
- Slice the tomatoes (Photo 5)
- Add the sliced tomatoes to the chopped basil (Photo 6)
- Add the bocconcini to the basil tomato mix (Photo 7)
- Season the tomato salad with salt and pepper (Photo 8)
The caprese salad is super easy to bring together!! The tomatoes, basil and mozzarella all compliment each other so well and the salt, pepper and oil pulls the flavours together!
Insalata Caprese with balsamic vinegar might sound super fancy but you can see by the photos above and below that it is simple to make as the flavours come to life!
- Oven bake the bread to toast (Photo 9)
- Spread a layer of pesto on each slice of toasted bread (Photo 10)
- Drizzle the salad with the oil (Photo 11)
- Stir to combine (Photo 12)
🍽 Serving Suggestions
The bruschetta will be ready to serve straight away and goes down very nicely with a drizzle of balsamic glaze.
If you are not looking to serve your bruschetta straight away, hold off on adding the oil, topping the bruschetta and drizzling with balsamic glaze until you are (this will keep it from going soggy 🥰👍😉 !).
👍 How to Guide
How to Store
You can make the tomato cheese mixture for the salad, but hold off adding liquids to it if you want to make some of the recipe in advance.
It is not suitable for freezing or reheating.
💡 Tasty Tips
These are my top tips and tricks that I want to share with you to help you master this recipe from the 1st time you make it:
- Use a chopping board and sharp knife as this will make the prep work TOO EASY!!
- Kitchen scissors are the way to go for chopping the herbs (rough it is, not too fine).
- You can flip and toast both sides of the bread if you wish (extra effort and not necessary but you can!).
- Make the salad ahead of time and then pull together when friends and family arrive!
- Hold off drizzling the glaze till ready to serve!
Weekends seem to be the time when naturally we have more time for good food! Grab some nice chilled wine, these ingredients and get your bruschetta on!
🤓 Frequently Asked Questions
What is an easy to prepare and inexpensive Italian recipe to make at home?
Mozzarella and tomato bruschetta is a great starting place for Italian style cooking in your kitchen!
The 2 highlights of this recipe are that it is easy to prepare and it is budget friendly!
Once you know what the basic flavours are, you need only grab the ingredients and get started.
Bring the taste of Italy to your home in an inexpensive and flavour packed manner!
What should you serve with a Caprese salad?
A Caprese salad pairs with roast chicken, prosciutto and grilled or roasted meat like lamb or beef.
Crostini or mini toasts are also a great choice as they allow you to serve the salad as an appetizer, with spoonfuls of salad on top!
Balsamic glaze is recommended for dressing or drizzle, but as it has a strong and bold taste, it is best to use it in moderation and not cover the entire salad!
What are some bruschetta topping ideas?
Here are 11 easy ideas for flavorful bruschetta toppings:
- red onion
- fresh herbs
- roasted tomatoes
- Chopping board
- Kitchen scissors
- Flat Baking Tray
- 6 slices rye sourdough Note 1
- 250 grams bocconcini drained, not rinsed
- 250 grams cherry tomatoes
- ½ bunch basil leaves
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ cup basil pesto Note 2
- balsamic glaze to serve, Note 3
- Preheat your oven to 180°C / 350-375°F / Gas Mark 4-5
- Use a knife to slice your bread into even pieces, lay flat on lined baking tray and spray with cooking oil. Cook for 5 mins until bread is nicely toasted
- Add basil to a medium sized mixing bowl and use kitchen scissors to roughly chop
- Use a knife to cut cherry tomatoes in half and add to basil
- Cut bocconcini in halve and add to tomato basil mix
- Season salad with salt, pepper and oil. Stir to combine
- Use a knife to spread a layer of pesto onto each toasted slice of bread
- Use a spoon to scoop caprese salad over pesto layer
- Drizzle over balsamic glaze and serve
- Note 1 This is my favourite type of bread to use when I am making bruschetta. You can, however use your favourite. Rye, white, wholegrain, baguette, almost all bread types will work. The freshly baked loaves are better quality than your average sliced loaf of bread.
- Note 2 I use the dip version of the basil pesto, it is in the fridge section of the store with the other dips.
- Note 3 Balsamic glaze is a thicker glaze than regular balsamic vinegar. It will, however, be in roughly the same area at the shops (inn a squeezy bottle). It is perfect to drizzle over salads and bruschetta like this. Wait till just before serving to use.
Published June 2021, updated Jan 2022 with more tips!