Marinated Caprese Salad

There is something about the classic caprese flavors (fresh basil, fresh tomatoes and fresh mozzarella) that just gets me. The flavors are fresh. And I could eat caprese-whatever-it-is all day. All day, every day. I love it. And it loves me.

This simple caprese salad which marinates in a delicious vinaigrette is undeniably divine served with slices of baguette or sourdough for scooping. I mean, seriously, what could take basil, tomatoes and mozzarella over the top but slices of fresh, gluttonous bread. I’ll be making and eating this salad all summer. I hope you will, too. (Thanks, Natalie, for the recipe!)

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Marinated Caprese Salad

Marinated Caprese Salad


  • 6-8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, diced into bite-size pieces
  • 4-5 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 8-10 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • generous dash fresh ground black pepper


  1. Combine vinegar, garlic, salt, mustard, and pepper in small bowl or blender. Add the oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking or blending until oil is thoroughly emulsified and combined. In a wide, shallow dish, combine the tomatoes, cheese, and basil. Pour the dressing over the ingredients and toss to combine. Let the salad marinate covered in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to 3 hours.
  2. Serve the salad with slices of baguette (sourdough or regular) for scooping. You can also dice up the bread and toss it into the salad to create a sort of caprese panzanella salad.

Recipe Source: from Natalie B.

32 Responses to Marinated Caprese Salad

  1. Kay says:

    Do you think I could make this the night before? Would sitting overnight be an issue? Thanks, I make a lot of your recipes!!!

    • Mel says:

      Kay – I haven’t refrigerated it for that long but it should be ok – if anything, you might try tossing the cheese in toward the end so it doesn’t get soggy/mushy.

  2. […] Is there anything better than fresh tomatoes, cheese, and basil tossed with a garlic/olive oil dressing?  This marinated caprese {pronounced Cah-Prehz-Hee} salad is a perfectly light, refreshing summer meal or side dish and honestly, I could eat it all day long and be content.  I found this particular salad recipe here. […]

  3. Amanda says:

    Looks delicious! Going to make for a dinner party this weekend, any idea approx how many people it will serve?

  4. Candi says:

    OMG… I love Caprese and this looks awesome… I may add some red pepper flakes to spice it up… MMMMM.. With crusty french bread, heavenly berries in a Champagne Cream and Napa Valley Chardonnay.. I think I’m gonna plan a romantic picnic!!!!!!!!

  5. says:


  6. Sissy says:

    This was incredible. Honest and simple. I am now your biggest fan.

  7. Kira says:

    This was fresh, simple and delicious! Love the ideas of throwing it over noodles or chicken! Thanks Mel.

  8. Stacie says:

    I made this the other night with your ciabatta bread. It was so delicious!! I could eat it straight from the bowl. Even two days later it tastes great.

  9. Jen says:

    Made this for our Memorial Day BBQ yesterday and oh what a hit. So yummy!! I think the only change I would make is to toast the baguette slices a bit before serving. Other than that it was perfect. Even my super picky husband really liked it! Yep, this one’s a keeper 🙂

  10. Angie says:

    This was WONDERFUL. Thanks for the recipe. 🙂

  11. Aggie says:

    I have truly been enjoying tomatoes, mozz and basil the last couple of weeks. I can’t get enough. I’m loving this chopped version and how you served it along side that delicious bread! A dish like this really makes any table look great…

  12. grace says:

    there’s nothing more pride-inspiring than growing one’s own basil and tomatoes and making one’s own mozzarella and making one’s one wholly local caprese salad. this one’s lovely. 🙂

  13. Cammee says:

    I wish I had that plate in front of right now. I am sooooo behind on my google reader, but I can’t wait to try all of the delicious recipes you have posted. I’m anxious to try your wheat bread recipe. My mom bakes all of her bread too, which benefits me since I live down the street. She is a neonatal nurse and brought home one of the square tent things they put over babies–like a portable incubator. She raises her bread on the stove top under that. Too funny, but it works perfect!

  14. cindy says:

    I just made home-made mozzerella and have been looking fo a way to use it and i think this recipe will be the winner

  15. Janice says:

    Perfect summer salad.

  16. Kathleen says:

    Mel, this looks absolutely fabulous. I’m sure it will become a summer staple in my house!!!

  17. I HATED tomatoes as a kid and through to early adulthood. But now, now I can’t eat enough of them. I love them in everything!

  18. Amy says:

    Oh and I do balsamic vinegar in mine too.

  19. Amy says:

    I’ve never done dry mustard in mine before, but I have added some finely chopped purple onion and served it over grilled chicken. So good!

  20. Cheryl says:

    It sounds like a wonderful thing to look forward to this summer. Have you ever made homemade mozzerella cheese? It is easy and tasty. Try is sometime! I can’t wait.

  21. There’s nothing more that I love during the hot spring and summer days than a cold caprese salad. This looks delicious, flavorful and so fresh, Mel! I’ll be saving it to try soon. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  22. Amanda says:

    Natalie is my awesome neighbor! She brought this to our blookclub a couple of months ago and I fell in love with this salad! I’ve made it at my house and it was a hit. I can’t wait to make this, this summer, with fresh tomatoes out of my garden!

  23. Natalie B says:

    I’m so glad you love it like I do! And I am so going to make it into a sandwich next time I make it! Thanks for the suggestion Alisha!

  24. Karen says:

    I make something very similar, but omit the dry mustard. I call it my “Italian salsa”!!! I also let mine marinate at room temperature – I think it brings out the flavors better. Ie addition to serving as a salad, I do the panzanella thing, too, with nice, BIG homemade croutons. I also use it as a fresh, no-cook pasta sauce. Simply toss the salad with hot, drained pasta (I like linguini) and serve with lots of freshly grated parmasean, and bread for dipping, on the side.

    YUM. 😀

  25. Alisha says:

    I’m so glad you love caprese as much as I do! Just yesterday I had a caprese sandwich from a local bistro, and it was divine!! Thanks for the recipe…and all your recipes, I love them!

  26. I can see this being my summer potluck staple! It sounds sooo good 🙂

  27. Kim in MD says:

    I love caprese salad! It sounds amazing with the fresh bread! YUM!

  28. Makes me feel like summer is already here! I can’t wait for those first tomatoes from the back yard! Awesome sounding recipe!

  29. Jeanette says:

    I’m looking forward to trying this. Just purchased a basil plant this weekend! cheers~

  30. StephenC says:

    In the off-season, which is now, I find that those tomatoes on the vine you can get at the supermarket are pretty decent. We eat caprese very often in the summer.

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