Cherry Tomato Salad

5 from 16 votes

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Cherry or grape tomatoes are just plain cheery and delicious, and here they are the star of their own little show in a gorgeous salad perfect for any time of year.

Cherry Tomato Salad

A cherry tomato salad is the easiest way I know to add a pop of dazzling color to a meal. Tangy and sweet, bursting with flavor, infinitely adaptable. Use mixed color tomatoes or all red as I did here. Whatever you do, it will be gorgeous. There are moments of the year when you have a whole lot of extra cherry tomatoes, and you need to figure out what to do with them — this easy salad recipe is a perfect answer.

Finding myself with a surplus of cherry tomatoes somehow happens quite often. I think it’s because they are one of the vegetables (yes, yes, I know, actually a fruit) I incessantly buy without a recipe or goal in mind. And then, when they hit their peak weeks in the garden (or your friend’s garden!), there’s the serious need to figure out what to do with them. Sure, we can toss them into green and grain salads, add them to a pan sauce for chicken, and fling them across finished dishes for a burst of color. Yet, when we find ourselves with a heap of cherry tomatoes just waiting to be put to use, then why not make them the star of their own little show?

Also, try Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Burrata and Basil Oil, Tomato, Mozzarella, and Basil Salad, and Cherry Tomato Antipasti Salad.

Cherry Tomato Salad next to cutting board with grilled ribs.

Cherry Tomato Salad: Cherry or grape tomatoes are just plain cheery and delicious, and here they are the star of their own little show.

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Cherry Tomato Salad Ingredients

For the Dressing:

  • Olive oil – Use extra-virgin if possible!
  • Balsamic vinegar – If you have the good stuff, use it here! You can sub in other vinegars if you like, but balsamic adds some welcome sweetness.
  • Dijon mustard – Adds some tanginess to the vinaigrette.
  • Honey – Provides a touch of sweetness to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes and the vinegar.
  • GarlicFinely mince the garlic so it blends nicely into the dressing.

For the Salad:

  • Cherry tomatoes – The star of the show! Pick any color you like, and feel free to sub in other tiny tomatoes like grape or teardrop tomatoes.
  • Oregano – Other herbs are also great (see Variations), but please use fresh herbs for this salad.
Cherry Tomato Salad in white bowl with serving spoon and towel.

Tips and Variations

  • Add diced young zucchini or summer squash, sliced or diced cucumber, and/or diced onion — raw or sautéed.
  • Mix up the colors of the tomatoes for visual appeal.
  • Try and find little teardrop tomatoes for a variety of shapes.
  • Try other fresh herbs instead of the oregano (basil is a classic, tarragon or thyme would also be lovely).
  • Add little cubes of mozzarella (preferably fresh) or feta cheese to the salad.
  • Add halved olives.
  • Replace the honey with the agave for a vegan version of this salad.

FAQs

What is the difference between grape and cherry tomatoes?

You can use grape tomatoes instead of cherry tomatoes. In most recipes, they are interchangeable, though there are some subtle differences. Cherry tomatoes can range in size from quite small to golf ball size. Grape tomatoes are usually smaller, meatier, and have a thicker skin.

Their lower water content means grape tomatoes will usually last longer than cherry tomatoes. This is true if you keep them on the counter or refrigerate them. Ideally, you should never refrigerate tomatoes at all. Refrigeration changes their texture and mutes their flavor. Keep them on the counter at room temperature, and eat them while they are good! If they start to wrinkle before you are ready to eat them, or you need to keep them for a while, you can tuck them in the fridge, but it’s not the best way to store any tomato.

Are cherry or grape tomatoes sweeter?

Cherry tomatoes are usually sweeter than grape tomatoes, especially at the height of tomato season, mid to late summer. There are some varieties that are super sweet: look for Sun Gold Cherry Tomatoes, which are almost candy-like! (Remember, tomatoes are botanically a fruit!)

Cutting Cherry Tomatoes for Salad

I almost always cut cherry or grape tomatoes in half and I recommend doing so for this salad. Cutting them in half makes them easier to scoop, serve, and bite into (without squirting your dinnermate).

Also, it allows the dressing to soak into the middle of the tomato, giving this salad a whole lot more flavor. Whole cherry or grape tomatoes slicked with a vinaigrette are less unified as a salad than tomatoes that have been halved. If your cherry tomatoes are very large, you might cut them into quarters.

Slicing cherry tomatoes with chef knife on wood cutting board.

How to Make Cherry Tomato Salad

  1. Make the dressing: In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  2. Toss the salad: Add the tomatoes and the oregano and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

What to Serve With Cherry Tomato Salad

Wood table with Cherry Tomato Salad, French potato salad, and Cajun ribs.

More Cherry or Grape Tomatoes Recipes

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5 from 16 votes

Cherry Tomato Salad

Cherry or grape tomatoes are just plain cheery and delicious, and here they are the star of their own little show in a gorgeous salad perfect for any time of year.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 People
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Ingredients 

For the Dressing

For the Salad

  • 4 cups cherry tomatoes (halved)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh oregano

Instructions 

  • In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  • Add the tomatoes and the oregano and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Notes

  • Mix up the colors of the tomatoes for visual appeal.
  • Try and find little teardrop tomatoes for a variety of shapes.
  • Try slivered fresh basil instead of the oregano.
  • Add little cubes of mozzarella, preferably fresh, to the salad.
  • Replace the honey with the agave for a vegan version of this salad.

Nutrition

Calories: 177.55kcal, Carbohydrates: 13.23g, Protein: 1.89g, Fat: 13.89g, Saturated Fat: 1.94g, Sodium: 48.75mg, Potassium: 376.06mg, Fiber: 2.4g, Sugar: 8.53g, Vitamin A: 779.64IU, Vitamin C: 33.97mg, Calcium: 67.54mg, Iron: 2.28mg
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About Katie Workman

Katie Workman is a cook, a writer, a mother of two, an activist in hunger issues, and an enthusiastic advocate for family meals, which is the inspiration behind her two beloved cookbooks, Dinner Solved! and The Mom 100 Cookbook.

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13 Comments

  1. Karen says:

    Simple 5-minute recipe that is absolutely delicious and refreshing.