Bruschetta is an easy, Italian appetizer that always goes over well. Toasted bread, rubbed with garlic and topped with diced garden tomatoes, fresh basil and a hint of balsamic vinegar. This is the best bruschetta recipe!
Bruschetta or “bru-sketta” has nuzzled it’s way into my heart. This pregnancy of mine has brought cravings for tomatoes galore, so this has been my snack of choice for the past two months. The tomato basil combo cannot be beat, especially when enjoying with some extra toasty (and garlicky!) bread.
First of all, what is bruschetta?
Bruschetta is an Italian appetizer (or antipasto) consisting of grilled or toasted bread, rubbed with olive oil and garlic (extra garlic for me!), then topped with a tomato-basil mixture. It doesn’t have to always be tomatoes, it could be beans, cheese, cured meats or other vegetables.
Here in America though, this recipe is the classic Bruschetta recipe that everyone expects.
How to make Bruschetta
This bruschetta recipe could not be easier, plus making it in advance only makes it taste more amazing!
- Make the tomato mixture by dicing up several ripe, garden tomatoes, chopping up some fresh basil and stirring in a little minced garlic, salt, pepper and balsamic vinegar.
- Grill or toast the bread by slicing a baguette into thin pieces, drizzling with olive oil and baking for several minutes to crisp. You want this very crisp to withstand the wet tomato mixture! After it has toasted up, gently rub each piece with a raw clove of garlic.
- Spoon the tomato mixture onto the toasts to create your bruschetta.
- Finish with a little balsamic glaze or parmesan cheese. An optional (but delicious) step.
What kind of tomatoes should I use for Bruschetta?
The variety of tomato shouldn’t matter as much as quality. Where possible, try to find a garden heirloom or ‘on the vine’ tomato from a farmer’s market. They tend to be juicier and sweeter. A lot of store bought tomatoes grown in large quantities tend to lack flavor and can have a grainy texture which obviously doesn’t make for a very tasty bruschetta topping.
When in doubt, smell the tomato. If it smells like a freshly picked tomato, odds are it will be a good one. Tomatoes that just have no scent whatsoever will probably have no flavor.
Making bruschetta in advance
Like I mentioned above, making the tomato topping a few hours ahead of time can make a world of difference for the flavor. Simply stir the tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper together in a bowl, cover and refrigerate. It should stay good for at least three days, though I like to serve it within 24 hours.
For the photos above, I added the tomato topping right to the toasted bread, but feel free to just have the bruschetta topping in a bowl with a stack of grilled bread right beside. Both perfectly acceptable and equally delicious!
Other recipes you will love:
- Bruschetta Chicken
- Italian Grilled Chicken with Cucumber Bruschetta
- Greek Salad Bruschetta
- Baked Pesto Chicken and Rice Casserole
My little baby bouncing boy miiiight come out all red and rosy like a tomato based on how many tomatoes I’ve been consuming, but at least he’s nice and healthy 😉 Enjoy, friends!!
Simple Bruschetta Recipe
Bruschetta is an easy, Italian appetizer that always goes over well. Toasted bread, rubbed with garlic and topped with diced garden tomatoes, fresh basil and a hint of balsamic vinegar.
- 1/2 french baguette cut into thin slices
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic* 1 peeled and kept whole, 1 minced
- 4 large on the vine tomatoes diced
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 8 large basil leaves chopped or sliced thin
- salt & pepper to taste
- balsamic glaze** for drizzling, optional
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheet with foil and set aside.
Slice baguette into 1/2 inch slices. Brush each side with olive oil and bake 10 minutes or until bread is lightly toasted and completely crisp. Remove from oven, cool slightly and rub each piece gently with whole garlic clove.
For the tomato bruschetta topping, add minced garlic, tomatoes, basil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper together in a bowl and stir.
To serve, top each slice of bread with tomato topping and drizzle with balsamic glaze, if desired.
*I like a lot of garlic and have adjusted this recipe accordingly. If you are not a garlic person, feel free to adjust the amounts.
**The balsamic glaze I use and love is from Trader Joes, but have seen several at different grocery stores.