Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil

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Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil is a simple, fresh, and gorgeous easy appetizer that screams summer. The colors resemble the Italian flag. The garlic cloves on toasted bread topped with juicy ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil are a perfect bite of your favorite Italian flavors.

Make this bruschetta recipe with Fast Italian No Knead Ciabatta Bread, or your favorite crusty bread. Serve this for a light lunch or perfect appetizer, or make it a complete meal and serve them with a tasty pasta salad or grilled ribs! Are you craving more summer recipes? I’ve got you covered- 34 BEST Italian Summer Recipes.

Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil hand holding one.
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I love fresh ingredients in the summertime, and sweet tomatoes are at the top of my list. In Sardegna, Italy where I grew up, the summer tomatoes are as sweet as candy. You will love this traditional bruschetta recipe with mozzarella and tomato basil. Serve this as an appetizer to our Grilled Chicken Thigh Recipe!

You will love a few more fresh tomato recipes: Baked Zucchini and Tomato Bruschetta, Pasta with Salsa Fresca (fresh tomato sauce) similar to a fresh Italian tomato salad, and Panzanella Stuffed Mozzarella.

Simple Ingredients

Good quality ingredients go a long way in this recipe. Since there aren’t many ingredients to this tomato bruschetta, use as fresh as possible for optimal results.

ingredient shot for recipe
  • Tomatoes: use fresh, ripe, high-quality tomatoes for the best results, like heirloom and Roma tomatoes, grape tomatoes, or cherry tomatoes. It is your personal preference! For best results use room temperature tomatoes. They will acquire too much liquid as they get cold.
  • Mozzarella: use high-quality fresh mozzarella (soft, not hard). You could also use bocconcini (mini mozzarella balls), or mozzarella pearls. Read more about Different Types of Mozzarella.
  • Basil: use fresh basil, even better if you have a plant at home so you can pick it just before making the bruschetta. 
  • Bread: there are several types of bread you can use whether you want larger or smaller portions (like crostini): french baguette slices, rustic bread loaves (particularly Italian), sourdough, ciabatta, etc. 
  • Olive oil: use high-quality extra virgin olive oil. You can also use garlic-infused olive oil to avoid having to rub the bread with garlic manually. 
  • Aromatics: combination of fresh garlic cloves (adjust the amount to personal preference), sea salt and black pepper, and balsamic vinegar or a drizzle of balsamic glaze (adds an extra dimension of flavor and tang).

See recipe card for quantities.

Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil hand holding one.

Fresh vine ripe tomatoes remind me of warmer months in Italy when we walk to the vegetable and fruit stands and pick out our own delicious produce. And, marinating time aside, this delicious treat comes together in about 15 minutes!

As a pizza enthusiast, this bruschetta with mozzarella and basil is like an easy pizza appetizer – you won’t hear me complain about the sweet simplicity of this recipe! Speaking of summer appetizers you must try our famous Italian Stuffed Zucchini (vegetarian).

How To Make Bruschetta With Mozzarella

fresh mozzarella in a bowl
  1. Using a sharp knife or mandoline, carefully and evenly slice the tomatoes and mozzarella. You can cut them in slices or cut them in small pieces based on how you like them. 
tomatoes marinating in olive oil and balsamic vinegar with basil

2. In a large bowl add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and basil. Stir to combine. Add the tomatoes and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 30 minutes to 60 minutes so the flavors infuse in the tomatoes. 

oil on bread on baking sheet ready to bake

3. Toast the bread. If your bread isn’t pre-sliced, slice it around ¼-½ inch thick. Drizzle or brush the bread with a little olive oil then line up the slices on a baking sheet.

toasted bruschetta bread

4. Turn the oven to 450ºF. Heat until the edges start to darken (about 5 minutes). 

rubbing garlic on toasted bread.
assembling the bruschetta

5. Rub the fresh garlic over the toasted bread. Adjust amount based on personal preference. Rubbing about a half a clove on one side. Set bread aside.

6. Assemble the tomato bruschetta by alternating the marinated tomatoes and fresh mozzarella on top of the toasted bread in a single layer. Top with a drizzle of olive oil and extra basil. Enjoy! 

Hint: The toasted bread infused with garlic will get slightly softer as it absorbs the juices from the marinated tomatoes. It is better for the bread to be more toasted than less for this recipe.

platter of bruschetta with tomatoes and mozzarella basil .

Featured is our 2 in 1 cutting and charcuterie board handmade in S.L.C, Utah.

FAQ’s

How to prevent soggy bruschetta

Avoid soggy mozzarella bruschetta by making a “bruschetta with mozzarella bar” – place the grilled bread slices on a large platter next to bowls filled with the marinated tomato mixture and sliced mozzarella. Add a bottle of balsamic vinegar and extra basil, and your family and friends can build their own!

How to toast bread for making bruschetta

Toast the bread slices in an oven, toaster oven, or grill. Drizzle sliced bread with a little olive oil and toast until lightly browned on both sides. Then cut a clove of garlic in half and rub over one side of the toast. Add your favorite toppings, such as mozzarella and tomatoes—a simple way to use Italian bread.

Can I use dried basil?

You can use dried basil if that’s all you have available but it will be a completely different taste and texture experience. I highly recommend using fresh basil leaves.

What’s the difference between caprese and bruschetta?

Generally speaking, bruschetta is a dish served on toasted bread. Caprese is a salad that includes fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, and often balsamic vinegar.

Which bread is best for this recipe?

Bread: there are several types of bread you can use whether you want larger or smaller portions (like crostini): sliced french bread, rustic bread loaves (particularly Italian), sourdough, ciabatta, etc. 

Should bruschetta be served hot or cold?

This is something that is up to your own preferences but in Italy we serve the cold topping on warmed bread.

Bruschetta is pronounced ‘brusketa’ in Italian. Most people think bruschetta is referring to the tomato topping but it’s actually referring to the toasted bread that holds the toppings. 

grilled bread on baking sheet.

Bruschetta is an antipasto consisting of grilled or toasted bread rubbed with garlic and topped with olive oil and salt. Variations of toppings may include tomato, vegetables, beans, cured meat, or cheese. I love this baked zucchini and tomato version as well! 

If you are looking for another topping option, you might want to try this eggplant caponata recipe!

grilled bread rubbed with garlic.

Substitutions

This tomato mozzarella bruschetta can be made with gluten-free bread and/or vegan by swapping out the cheese. Either way, it always packs a ton of flavor with the fresh basil leaves and plum tomatoes!

Variations

Try this recipe the original bruschetta way the first time- it is simple the perfect bruschetta recipe! Try these variations the nest time.

  • Red Onion: add a little thinly slices raw red onion.
  • Other tomatoes: whether it’s not tomato season or you’re just in the mood for something different, you can substitute the fresh tomato for canned whole tomatoes (drain the juice and then chop the tomatoes) or roasted tomatoes.
  • Spice: add a chili flakes to the tomato mozzarella bruschetta.
  • Pesto: the combination of Authentic Italian Pesto Genovese (Basil Pesto) with mozzarella, tomato, and basil is an Italian classic! Lightly spread the pesto over the toast before adding the tomato and cheese. Try this recipe: Best Baked Salmon with Pesto Recipe (Easy).
  • Cheesy twist: change the mozzarella for goat cheese or feta instead or use a spread of ricotta or cream cheese below the tomato mixture.
  • Garlic: instead of brushing each toast with garlic, you could finely mince the garlic and add it to the tomato mixture to marinate. 
  • Grill the bread: If you have the grill turned on for a bbq you can grill the bread on that! Using the oven or a toaster oven is a great way as well.
  • Marinate the cheese: You can sometimes find marinated mozzarella in grocery stores that have salad or olive bars. This is a great twist on this dish!

Make ahead of time

To make ahead: prepare the toppings up to a day in advance (without the basil) and then assemble just before serving.

Toast the bread right before serving and do not top the bread with the tomato topping until right before serving or it will get soggy. Toasting the bread does help it from getting soggy right away from the tomato liquid.  

Storage

Fridge: Any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator (covered) for 1-2 days – then strain the liquid before using it. The better when it comes to this tomato bruschetta recipe with mozzarella. 

Freezer: I don’t recommend freezing any leftover bruschetta with mozzarella and tomatoes. This recipe is so easy to make in a pinch of time it is worth making it fresh.

Leftovers: If you have leftover tomato mixture you can toss with with pasta! Read this to learn how to cook pasta perfectly every time! If you have leftover bread you can make Tuscan Ribollita- Vegetable Bread Soup.

What To Serve With This Recipe

More Italian appetizer options for you: Crispy Calamari Air Fryer Recipe, Prosciutto Melon Arugula Salad, Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil, Roasted Portabello Mushrooms, Best Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes Recipe, Best Baked Artichoke Spinach Dip (no mayo), Cream Cheese Jimmy Dean Dip, and Italian Seafood Salad Appetizer.

Top tips

This Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil is best made fresh!

  • Allow the tomato to marinate: if you dice the tomato, then allow them to marinate in a little oil with olive oil, ribboned basil, and balsamic. I recommend 30 minutes minimum to allow the ingredients to marry; 60 for the best results. 
  • Use day-old bread: It is the perfect consistency for homemade bruschetta.

More delicious recipes for you:

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close up of bruschetta bread with mozzarella and tomato.

Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella

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5 from 7 reviews

Easy Bruschetta Recipe with Mozzarella and Tomato Basil is a simple, fresh, and gorgeous easy appetizer that screams summer. The colors resemble the Italian flag and the garlic cloves on toasted bread topped with juicy ripe tomatoes and fresh mozzarella and basil are a perfect bite of your favorite Italian flavors.

  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 6 slices of bread french baguette, rustic Italian loaf, sourdough, or ciabatta,
  • 46 tomatoes Roma or heirloom, vine ripe, in-season; or cherry tomatoes, cut into slices or small pieces
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into slices or small pieces
  • 4 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, more for garnish
  • 3 garlic cloves, whole
  • 8 basil leaves, cut into ribbons, more for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar or balsamic glaze

Instructions

  1. Using a sharp knife or mandoline, carefully and evenly slice the tomatoes and mozzarella. You can cut them in slices or cut them in small pieces based on how you like them. 
  2. In a large shallow bowl add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and basil. Stir to combine. Add the tomatoes and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 30 minutes to 60 minutes so the flavors infuse in the tomatoes. 
  3. Toast the bread. If your bread isn’t pre-sliced, slice it around ¼-½ inch thick. Turn the oven to 450ºF. Place the bread slices on a large baking sheet. Brush the bread slices with a little olive oil until the edges start to darken (about 5 minutes). 
  4. Rub the fresh garlic over the toasted bread. Adjust amount based on personal preference. Rubbing about a half a clove on one side. Set bread aside. 
  5. Assemble the tomato bruschetta by alternating the marinated tomatoes and fresh mozzarella on top of the toasted bread in a single layer. Top with a drizzle of olive oil and extra basil. Enjoy! 
  • Author: Elena
  • Prep Time: 15 min + 30 minutes marinating time
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Savory
  • Method: Italian
  • Cuisine: Italian

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About Elena

My dream is to share delicious wholesome recipes that you will share around the table with all your loved ones. The memories surrounded by food are the heart and soul of CucinaByElena.

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13 Comments

  1. This recipe is awesome ! It was easy to make and understand the instructions . Thanks so much for sharing it with us .






  2. This recipe is awesome ! It was easy to make and understand the instructions . Thanks so much for sharing it with us .






  3. Tried this recipe tonight and it was DELICIOUS! We had a small gathering and everyone loved it! It was so easy and so yummy! Definitely the hit of the night.






    1. So happy you loved the recipe! I am making it on repeat these days with all the seasonal fresh tomatoes.