Ina Garten is the master of transforming exquisite-looking, delicious meals into approachable, everyday recipes. For any avid follower of the celebrity chef, you know about her love of tomatoes. While she frequently recommends the canned variety to make her meals quick and easy, Garten clearly loves to use gorgeous, colorful, fresh tomatoes in her summer-ready dishes. If you do, too — and basically wait all year for sweet, snackable Sun Golds and sandwich-ready beefsteaks to reach their peak — you’ll appreciate these five light, refreshing Ina Garten tomato recipes that let the fruit take center stage.
Slow-Roasted Tomato & Ricotta Bruschetta
Want to “#keepitsimple” but still whip up a crowd-pleaser? This dish calls for just three ingredients: fresh bread, soft cheese, and some slow-roasted tomatoes. Garten explained how she “didn’t even need a recipe!!” And, even without instructions, we trust that this five-minute appetizer will not disappoint. The chef suggests pairing it with either pesto pasta or grilled lamb chops for one easy, dinner party-ready spread.
Grilled Bread With Tomatoes
This dish proves that less truly can be more and is perfect for vegans or anyone just trying to cut down on dairy. With only tomatoes, spices, and some fresh greens, this bruschetta-inspired dish is perfect for a hot day and to serve alongside other small plates or for happy hour. Grill up thick slices of rustic bread and top with some raw, ripe tomatoes, olive oil, and herbs for a delicious, nutritious snack or side any time of the day.
Roasted Tomato Caprese Salad
If you’re looking for an indulgent option without the bread, this timeless Caprese salad is perfect for the hot weather. To make Ina Garten’s take on this classic Italian starter, use plum tomatoes and soft fresh mozzarella with some balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, spices, and a bit of sugar. Top with basil leaves for a refreshing, artisanal touch. Get the full recipe here.
Tomato & Goat Cheese Crostata
For an elevated version of your standard homemade pizza, try out Ina Garten’s Tomato Crostata. Garten shared a similar recipe with Food Network that you make in under an hour. To make this recipe, use puff pastry, goat cheese, a tomato, onions, garlic, some fresh herbs, dry white wine, and good olive oil. Sauté the onion according to the directions, assemble, and place the tart in the oven for a nearly effortless Italian meal. Get the full recipe here.
Anna’s Tomato Tart
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While I have dinner parties more often, my favorite time to entertain is actually Sunday lunch. Everyone’s finished their chores from Saturday and they’re ready to relax and have some fun. Plus, the meal is so much easier to make than Saturday night! One of my favorite summer lunches is Anna’s Tomato Tart – the whole thing is prepared before anyone arrives and I can have a great afternoon with my friends. And boy, will they be impressed by this stunning tart!! (The recipe is available on barefootcontessa.com, link is in my profile!)
If you’re looking for a tomato-centric main dish and are craving something with a bit more substance, Garten has you and your plate covered — with cheese, that is. Whether you’re looking for a fresh dinner party recipe or to impress your friends and family with something special, follow Garten’s instructions to make a homemade crust (it calls for a secret ingredient: dried beans!). For the filling, Garten keeps it simple with sliced tomatoes, Guryére and Parmesan cheeses, fresh herbs, olive oil, and Dijon mustard for some extra flavor and depth. Get the full recipe here.
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Before you go, check out our gallery of Ina Garten’s best dinner recipes below: