Monday, February 6, 2012

mini caprese salad bites

raise your hand if you love caprese salad!
a burst of fresh deliciousness in every bite.

it was about 2 1/2 hours before i needed to be at a party with a side dish in hand.
i had a napping babe i did not want to wake just to go to the market.
what ever i had on hand was going to have to suffice.
i felt like i was on a cooking game show.
what could i make that didn't LOOK like i'd totally forgotten i needed to bring something??

thank goodness i had recently picked up a container of cherry tomatoes at costco that was still sitting in my pantry.
i had also purchased a huge bag of mozzarella string cheese for the munch during that costco run.
:: i obviously would have preferred buffalo mozzarella, but hey...beggars can't be choosers. i was on lock down with a napping baby ::
low and behold a friend had given me a very large bunch of fresh basil just the day before.
bite sized caprese salads for everyone!!

the most time consuming part is scooping out the cherry tomatoes.
it took me about 30 minutes to make about 30.
man these lil guys were tasty and a big hit at the party.

Mini Caprese Salad Bites
1 large package of cherry tomatoes
8-10 sticks of mozzarella string cheese or 1 container pearl sized buffalo mozzarella
1 bunch of fresh basil
Kosher salt and pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
Balsamic vinegar

Rinse and pat dry the cherry tomatoes. Remove all stems. The tops of the cherry tomato are usually flat, so I cut off the bottom more rounded portion to get inside the tomato. Use a sharp paring knife cut a thin slice off the bottom. Scoop out the seeds with a melon baller or the paring knife. Discard the seedy centers. Place the tomato cut side down on a paper towel to drain liquid.

Depending on the size of your cherry tomatoes cut the mozzarella sticks into bite size pieces that will fit nicely in to the tomato.
Rinse and gently pat dry the basil. Hand tear generous pieces to go in the middle of each tomato.
I made them large and folded them to fit.

To assemble, line your scooped out cherry tomatoes on a cutting board or cookie sheet.
Season to taste with fresh ground pepper and kosher salt.
Line each tomato with a piece of basil, gently pushing it to the bottom of the tomato.
Top off with a piece of mozzarella.
Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Best served when cheese is at room temperature.


  1. Yum! After you brought these to the baby shower last summer, I added it to my pupu collection!

  2. THAT IS AMAZING! I adore is 10:30 at night but I want to go to the store right now and get all those ingredients for my baby shower tomorrow!! Thank you so much! You have completely inspired me!!!! Thank you so much!

  3. I made these for a baby shower today and they were such a hit! I was sorry I did not make more! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe. These have become an instant favorite of my family and my circle of people at our baptist church (you know us Southern Baptist's like our potlucks!! :) ) I was so thrilled and you were SO right when you said they taste better when the cheese is at room temperature. It was total YUM!! You are awesome! Thanks again

  4. @ The Crystal glad you liked them! Thanks for the feedback.

  5. These look delicious - what a creative idea! I've got them pinned.

  6. Such a good idea! I saw your recipe on Pinterest, and it's perfect timing for me, as my basil plants start growing. I will definitely be trying this out.

  7. OOOO yum. I made caprese kabob bites yesterday and they were a hit. Next time wi will do these.

  8. Totally addicted, thanks!

  9. Looks fantastic! Finally something I can use my grown basil on (in bulk) :D ty for posting.

  10. Hye ..thanks for all the recipe, i love simple but delicious food. i pin some of your images to pinterest

  11. I wonder if these would be good using grape tomatoes?

  12. bought ingredients to make this today :) My husband loves caprese salad and thought this would be a different way to injoy it. But not using string cheese for our cheese tho we bought a log of it.

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