11 Fresh Tomato Recipes to Use Up Your Best Heirloom Varieties

Don't let a single one of these superstars go to waste.

Each year, tomato lovers wait impatiently for their brief season to swing back around. And once the summer sun has finally ripened the fruit to perfection, we load our grocery bags with tomatoes of all shapes, sizes, and colors. Then we get cooking—or enjoy them raw.

But heat changes a tomato, as does salt, spice, how you slice them, and the addition of contrasting textures. Each slight touch casts tomatoes in a new light. The good news is that fresh tomatoes don't need much fuss.

These minimal preparations reflect that—and will showcase the best ways to use fresh tomatoes (without compromising their flavor). And if you still have some left, make sure to store any leftover tomatoes with care (wasting even a single one is tragic).

01 of 11

Easy Homemade Mild Salsa


Cara Cormack

Plum tomatoes, which are known for their texture, are the best type to use for this recipe. You decide on the heat level: The white seeds inside the jalapeño will really kick it up a notch if desired.

Get the recipe: Easy Homemade Mild Salsa

02 of 11

Sliced-Tomato Salad With Dill Pickle Relish Vinaigrette

Tomato Salad with Pickle Relish Vinaigrette
Caitlin Bensel

You can savor a tomato in its simplest beauty in a few ways. Freshly picked and plain, for example, or right off the vine sprinkled with salt. Or you can drizzle a tangy dressing over thick slabs of heirloom tomatoes and cucumbers for this fresh and tasty salad.

Get the recipe: Sliced-Tomato Salad With Dill Pickle Relish Vinaigrette

03 of 11

Tomato-Burrata Toasts

Tomato-Burrata Toasts Recipe
Greg DuPree

Introducing a bit of Mediterranean sunshine: Salt and a healthy glug of your best olive oil lets the flavors of fresh tomatoes really speak. When going for a simple tomato snack this summer, mix up this tomato salad—and serve it with garlic-rubbed bread, fresh oregano, and creamy burrata cheese.

Get the recipe: Tomato-Burrata Toasts

04 of 11

Hummus, Tomato, and Feta Pita Pizzas

Hummus, Tomato, and Feta Pita Pizzas
Johnny Miller

Fresh cherry tomatoes join hummus, Feta, herbs, and shallot dressing as toppings in this tasty pita dish. Add a side of arugula with the same dressing, and you've got a healthy meal that works either as a lunch or a light dinner.

Get the recipe: Hummus, Tomato, and Feta Pita Pizzas With Arugula Salad

05 of 11

Heirloom Tomato and Herb BLT

Heirloom Tomato & Herb BLT
Heami Lee

Just back from the farmer's market with the juiciest, most beautiful tomatoes of the season? Then it's time to let your tomatoes take center stage, and this hearty-enough-for-dinner sandwich is just the recipe to do it.

Get the recipe: Heirloom Tomato & Herb BLTs

06 of 11

Fancy Tomato Sandwiches

Fancy tomato sandwiches on a wooden board displayed on a table with fruit juice and sunglasses.
Greg DuPree

For this recipe, combine garden-fresh tomatoes with cheese like Gruyère or Comté between two slices of a crisp and doughy baguette. Then top it off with fried onions and arugula, which add more flavor and texture.

Get the recipe: Fancy Tomato Sandwiches

07 of 11

Tomato-Feta Dip

Tomato Feta Dip
Victor Protasio

The cherry tomatoes in this recipe are broiled, which brings out their juicy, sweet flavor and blends beautifully with the salty feta cheese. Warm pita, crispy crostini, or fresh veggies can all complement this delicious dip.

Get the recipe: Tomato-Feta Dip

08 of 11

Chard and Herb Frittata With Cherry Tomatoes

Chard & Herb Frittata With Cherry Tomatoes
Greg DuPree

This frittata already benefits from the antioxidant power of Swiss chard. Then you add the tomatoes tossed with herbs and oil, which serve as a fresh and flavorful topping to this dish.

Get the recipe: Chard and Herb Frittata With Cherry Tomatoes

09 of 11

Fresh Tomato Sauce

Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs
Marcus Nilsson

Long-simmered tomato sauce expresses a delicious umami flavor, a spirit satisfying in its concentration. But red sauce made from fresh tomatoes? Different entirely. There is a clean lightness to sauce made from fresh tomatoes, a fragile quality that reminds you of the season's brevity and that the fruit grew from a garden or farm vine.

Get the recipe: Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs

10 of 11

Linguini with Tomato Sauce

Linguine With Tomato Sauce
Lisa Cohen

Talk about a simple tomato recipe! The only ingredients you need here—besides tomatoes, of course—are olive oil and garlic. The fresh tomato flavor is sure to be the star of the dish.

Get the recipe: Linguine With Tomato Sauce

11 of 11

Fried Green Tomatoes

Fried Green Tomatoes
Lisa Hubbard

Green tomatoes are firm and acidic. These are qualities made for hot oil and breading, making fried green tomatoes a summer staple. (An added bonus is those green tomatoes are usually a few bucks a pound cheaper.) Slice unripe tomatoes into rounds, dredge them in breading, and fry them in a cast iron skillet for a hot snack or the filling of a sandwich.

Get the recipe: Fried Green Tomatoes

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