This easy, summery salad truly lets the ingredients shine! Tomato Burrata Salad is made with fresh garden tomatoes, creamy burrata cheese, and a crispy, garlicky breadcrumb topping that’ll have everyone reaching for seconds.
A Caprese-Like Salad with Gooey Italian Burrata Cheese
Once summer truly hits, it seems like fresh produce is everywhere, and you know what? I truly cannot resist the fresh, ripe, juicy tomatoes that are in abundance this time of year. All of the veggies and fruits are great, no doubt about it, but my basket somehow always ends up loaded down with luscious red tomatoes at the peak of their flavor. They’re wonderful sliced and sprinkled with salt and pepper, piled onto sandwiches (hello, BLTs!), and popped into all kinds of recipes.
But this? This, my friends, is a game-changer. Tomato burrata salad is similar to Caprese salad, with fresh tomatoes, fresh basil, and cheese. But when you substitute burrata for mozzarella, we are talking magic. The ultra-creamy, gooey center of burrata cheese makes every mouthful luxurious! If you like tomatoes at all, you’ve got to try this. If you don’t like tomatoes, try it anyway! You might just become a believer. (Looking for a Caprese recipe to love? Try Berry Caprese Salad with Light Balsamic Vinaigrette, Caprese Stuffed Mushrooms, or this simple One-Pot Caprese Pasta Dinner.)
What’s the Difference Between Mozzarella and Burrata?
Okay, this is a fun question! Burrata is kind of a spinoff of mozzarella, which has been around a lot longer (since the 12th century, in fact). Burrata is made by mixing strands of stretched, unfinished mozzarella curd with cream, and then encasing that in regular mozzarella cheese. So the outside of the burrata is familiar old mozzarella (yummy), while the inside is a creamy, cheesy, gooey delight (ultra yummy). 🤤
The Ingredients You’ll Need
Okay, so what exactly do you need to make tomato burrata salad? Well, that’s another great thing about this recipe. It’s incredibly simple! You only need a few ingredients, and hardly any prep. Here’s the list:
- Tomatoes: Any kind will do – just make sure they’re ripe. Slice them thin or cut them into 1-inch pieces. For grape tomatoes, cut them in half, but for cherry tomatoes, cut them in quarters, etc.
- Bread Crumbs: For making the crispy topping. You can use pre-made Italian bread crumbs, or pork rind crumbs if you’re keeping things low-carb. Homemade breadcrumbs are good, too!
- Olive Oil: I recommend a good extra virgin olive oil for this recipe.
- Garlic: If you can, mince up some fresh garlic – it has the brightest flavor. Otherwise, pre-minced garlic in a jar or powdered garlic will work.
- White Balsamic Vinegar: This delicious vinegar is a bit more delicate than regular balsamic vinegar, but you can use regular if that’s what you have. Both are great!
- Fresh Basil: Chopped.
- Salt and Pepper
- Burrata Cheese: Tear or cut into 1-inch pieces.
How to Make Tomato Burrata Salad
Can we all do a happy dance for recipes that literally take just minutes to whip up? Nothing could be more pleasant on a busy night than to have dinner done with minimal prep and maximum flavor. This easy salad definitely makes that an achievable goal!
- Drain the Tomatoes. This is the secret step that makes this salad so good! If you don’t have time, you can skip it, but it really makes almost any tomato salad better. Just cut the tomatoes into pieces or slices, place the pieces in a colander, and give them a little sprinkle of salt. Let them sit and drain for about 30 minutes (even 15 minutes will work).
- Make the Crispy Breadcrumbs. While the tomatoes are draining, heat up a couple of spoonfuls of olive oil in a skillet. Once it’s hot, add the breadcrumbs with a little salt and pepper, and toast/sautee them for about 2 minutes, or until they’re golden and crisp. You’ll want to stir them often so they don’t burn. Add the garlic, and cook for another 20 seconds or so, and then take the breadcrumb mixture off the heat. Let it cool on a clean plate.
- Mix the Dressing Ingredients. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining olive oil, the white balsamic vinegar, and a bit more salt and pepper.
- Finish the Dish. Add the tomatoes and basil to the vinegar mixture and gently toss to combine. Taste the dish and see if it needs any additional salt or pepper – if so, add some to your taste. Once the salad is well-seasoned, turn it out on a serving platter and arrange it a little bit. Top it with the breadcrumb topping and the torn burrata cheese.
Tomato burrata salad is not only simple, it’s a really flexible recipe, as well. These are just a few of the ways you can tweak it and make adjustments to fit your pantry and dietary needs.
- Add Protein: If you want to take this from more of a side dish to a light main course, you can easily add a bit more protein – think prosciutto, grilled chicken, leftover strips of steak… or even a perfectly-fried egg. Yum!
- Add Veggies: Torn romaine lettuce, slivers of fennel, and crisp slices of raw red onion would all be perfectly at home in this dish, as would sauteed summer squash or even mushrooms.
- Cheese Substitutes: If you can’t find burrata cheese, you can easily use fresh mozzarella balls or slices. This will take it back to its Caprese salad roots – which would be scrumptious, of course!
What to Serve with Tomato Burrata Salad
- Blackened Chicken: A Louisiana classic, Grilled Blackened Chicken is seasoned with a mouthwatering blend of Cajun spices, and cooked to juicy perfection. It’s just the thing to serve with this ultra-refreshing side dish.
- Pizza: I love pizza and salad, but the pizza I’m recommending for this dish is not just any old frozen pie: we’re talking Macedonian Fried Pork Pizza, made with soft pizza dough, tender chunks of seasoned pork, and fried eggs. It’s a hearty main course that plays well with the flavors in tomato burrata salad.
- Falafel: Keep things vegetarian with these addictive little chickpea dumplings. Crispy Baked Falafel are everything: meaty from the chickpeas, nutty from the tahini, and zesty from the garlic and cilantro. Seriously good, you guys!
How to Store the Leftovers
- Considering the delicate texture of the tomatoes and the cheese, this salad doesn’t store very well for long.
- Pop any leftovers into an airtight container, and refrigerate for a day or so. Or, even better, halve the recipe if you think it will make too much. That way, none will go to waste!
Tomato Burrata Salad
- 2 pounds ripe tomatoes, sliced, or cut into 1-inch pieces (I used heirloom tomatoes, grape tomatoes, and cherry tomatoes)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup Italian bread crumbs, or pork rind crumbs
- ¼ cup, plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 to 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup chopped fresh basil
- salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- 8 ounces burrata cheese, torn or cut into 1-inch pieces
- Place sliced/cut tomatoes in a colander and toss with ¼ teaspoon salt; let drain for about 30 minutes.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 10-inch skillet set over medium heat.
- Add the breadcrumbs to the heated oil; season with a bit of salt and pepper, and cook for about 2 minutes, or until crumbs are crispy and golden. Stir frequently.
- Stir in the garlic and cook for 10 seconds, or until fragrant.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a plate to cool.
- Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl whisk together ¼ cup oil with 1 to 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar. Whisk in salt and pepper.
- Add the tomatoes and basil to the vinegar mixture; gently toss to combine.
- Taste for salt and pepper, and adjust accordingly.
- Arrange the tomato salad on a serving platter.
- Top with previously prepared bread crumbs and the torn burrata cheese.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.