A tomato salad topped with balsamic vinegar is really one of the simplest and most delicious ways to enjoy garden-fresh tomatoes or to jazz up store-bought tomatoes, no matter the season. With our simple base recipe, plus ideas for extra add-ins, you can create 5 easy and unique salads you can enjoy all year round.

Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.
September 16, 2020
| Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

It's no wonder that tomato salads are a favorite summer dish. There is something about the combination of fresh tomatoes and herbs tossed with olive oil and a zesty vinegar that's simply irresistible! Tomato salads are a great way to use up plump tomatoes, straight from the garden, and are a tasty way to jazz up grocery store tomatoes, any time of the year. Plus, you don't need a ton of ingredients to make it taste delicious. Follow our simple formula for how to make easy, unique tomato salads with whatever you have on hand, and try out one of the five easy combinations we created.

How to Make a Basic Tomato & Balsamic Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

This basic tomato salad is accomplished in a few simple steps. Once you've mastered this recipe, you'll be able to make five more amazing recipes with some easy ingredient additions!

1. Prep your ingredients

Slice 4 cups of grape tomatoes in half and place them in a large bowl. You can also use Roma tomatoes, if desired, and cut them into bite-size chunks. Thinly slice one small white onion and coarsely chop a few basil leaves and add to the bowl (you can also add fresh parsley and/or dried oregano).

2. Drizzle on some dressing

Next, whisk together ¼ cup balsamic vinegar and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small bowl; pour this mixture over the tomato mixture.

3. Combine, refrigerate and enjoy!

Toss all of the ingredients together until everything is evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow those bold flavors to mesh together. This salad can be refrigerated in an airtight container for about 3 days. This base recipe makes 3 cups.

Healthy Tomato Salad Recipes to Try Using the Formula

Start with our basic formula from above and add in the other listed ingredients to create these five easy, unique tomato-balsamic salad recipes! They can be enjoyed alone or paired with a delicious entree, like this Creamed Spinach-Stuffed Salmon recipe or the Grilled Peach & Brie Smothered Chicken.

Greek Tomato & Balsamic Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

This Greek-inspired tomato salad is packed with tons of flavor and is super easy to make. Just add a sliced cucumber, ¼ cup Kalamata olives and some feta cheese to our base recipe and you'll have a simple salad that the whole family will enjoy! Makes 4 cups.

Quinoa-Herb Tomato & Balsamic Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

Make the most of tomato season with this simple salad combination with quinoa and herbs, Simply add 2 cups of cooked quinoa and an additional 1 tablespoon of olive oil to our base tomato salad recipe, toss and enjoy! Makes 4 cups.

Easy Tomato & Balsamic Pasta Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

This light, refreshing pasta salad recipe is perfect for summer picnics and outings, or when you need something fresh in the off season. Make our base tomato salad recipe and add 1 pound of cooked bow-tie noodles and a little extra drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Makes 8 cups.

Chicken, Pepper & Tomato Balsamic Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

This take on tomato salad adds peppers and protein-packed chicken for a vibrant, delicious veggie-packed combo. Dress up our base tomato salad recipe by adding 1 sliced green bell pepper, 2 cups sliced cooked chicken and a little extra drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Makes 4 cups.

Chickpea & Tomato Balsamic Salad

Credit: Andrea Mathis, M.A., R.D.N., L.D.

This healthy, filling and super-addictive tomato salad packs in the plant-based protein, thanks to canned chickpeas. To make this tasty salad, simply toss 1 can of rinsed chickpeas with our base recipe. And add a squeeze of lemon juice to help bring out this combo's fresh flavors. Makes 5 cups.