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How to Prep Tomatoes

There’s nothing quite like biting into a ripe, juicy midsummer tomato.
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Delicious on salads and sandwiches (of course), peak season tomatoes are an ingredient also worth celebrating on their own. Shine a spotlight on this summer superstar with three easy, unexpected ways to serve everyone’s favorite savory fruit. 

Grilled. Grilling tomatoes brings out the natural sugar, a delicious combo with smokiness from a barbecue. Look for ripe but still semi-firm tomatoes, which can stand up to the heat. To make this no-fail vegan dish, start by heating the grill to medium-high. Brush halved tomatoes with olive oil, and grill until tender but not falling apart, about 3-4 minutes. Arrange grilled tomatoes on a platter and season with salt and pepper. 

Grated. Using a box grater is a simple way to get bright tomato flavor with an appealing texture that’s in between chopped and crushed. It’s the perfect consistency for tomato toast, or pan con tomate, a popular appetizer served with Spanish tapas. Begin by slicing a baguette at an angle (allowing more surface area for the tomato topping) and brush with 3 tablespoons olive oil. Next, place a box grater in a bowl. Halve tomatoes and grate coarsely using the largest holes, starting with the cut side. Stir in sherry vinegar and remaining oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill baguette slices over medium heat until lightly toasted, about 1-2 minutes per side. Rub toasts with halved garlic cloves. Spoon tomato mixture on top and serve immediately. 

Stuffed. What’s better than a meal served inside an edible vessel? Tomatoes’ shape makes them perfect for stuffing – with meat, grains, cheese, and beyond. We love the flavors of tomato together with creamy chicken salad and fresh, peppery arugula. Start by cutting thin slices off the tops of the tomatoes. Using a small spoon, hollow out the tomatoes, leaving walls intact. Make the chicken salad by combining rotisserie chicken, mayo, lemon juice, and garlic powder; season with salt and pepper. Scoop salad into tomatoes and garnish with chives.  

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