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How to Make Tomato Bruschetta

plate of tomato bruschetta with tomatoes, bread, garlic, and basil

When summer arrives, I make tomato bruschetta at least three times a week. I can’t think of a tastier, easier, and quicker way to use the fresh tomatoes and basil from my garden than to make tomato bruschetta.

If you’ve ever wondered how to make tomato bruschetta, look no further – this recipe is super quick and easy to make, and it’s the bomb!

What is bruschetta?

Did you know bruschetta originated in Italy back in the 15th century? It is traced back to ancient Rome when the farmers would bring their olives to a local olive press, and sample the newly pressed oil by dipping bread into it.

Today, bruschetta is simply toasted bread, olive oil, and garlic, and is sometimes topped with a bit of salt or pepper. Bruschetta is not the toppings, though the toppings are indeed the crowning glory.

Sliced bread rubbed with garlic cloves that has been toasted

To make bruschetta, begin by slicing your bread into thick pieces. I like to use thick slices of a crusty, rustic loaf which allows the flavors of the toppings to shine.

Brush the bread slices with olive oil, then grill, broil, or toast them until they’re a crispy, golden brown. Rub each slice with a garlic clove, and then top with your chosen toppings.

Best breads for making bruschetta

A loaf of sliced bread

This is a picture is what I call a perfect bruschetta bread. It’s not too big and is a wheat bread, which is healthier for you. It also doesn’t have any grains, which can compete with the taste of your topping.

You want to make sure the bread turns out crispy when toasted. The best types of breads for making this happen easily are baguettes or a small rustic loaf of bread with a crunchy crust.

Also, you want to ensure the bread slices aren’t too large. Small slices of bruschetta can be held in one hand so they’re easy to eat. If you do have a large loaf, cut the slices in half or quarters before you toast them.

Making tomato topping for the bruschetta

Ingredients for tomato bruschetta include garlic, cherry tomato, basil on bread

It’s super easy to make the tomato topping. All you need are fresh tomatoes, garlic, and fresh basil.

You can use any tomato for this recipe. I used cherry tomatoes because they add a chewy texture. Just chop them into quarters or eighths, and place them in a small bowl.

For the garlic, you can chop the cloves into tiny pieces, thinly slice them, or use a garlic press. You can also grate the garlic with a small grater if you have one.

Some people add olive oil to the tomato mixture but I prefer not to since I’m already using oil on the bread. But it’s your choice, so add olive oil if you like.

Chop or slice the basil into thin pieces, and stir into the bowl with the tomatoes and garlic. If you don’t have basil, don’t worry – you can substitute chopped rosemary or parsley, or just leave it out.

Combining different herbs can change the flavors from fabulous to sensational – here are some herbal combinations you might want to try!

Tomato Bruschetta

Quick and easy tomato topping for delicious, garlicky bruschetta
Prep Time8 mins
Cook Time7 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine: Healthy, Italian, Plant-based, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 2


  • 1 cup chopped cherry tomatoes (about 15 cherry tomatoes)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 4-8 slices bread cut the bread into 1/2" thick slices


  • Apply a thin coat of olive oil onto each slice of bread, and put each slice face down on a hot grill/barbecue or face up in a toaster oven. Grill/toast/broil until the bread is crispy brown and remove.
  • After bread has been toasted, take the skin off one of the two garlic cloves and rub it across the top of each slice
  • To prepare the topping, cut the tomatoes into small pieces and place them into a small bowl
  • Chop or slice the remaining garlic clove, or press it in a garlic press and add to the tomatoes
  • Chop the basil and add to the bowl
  • Blend the garlic, basil, and tomatoes, and add a pinch of salt (optional)
  • Spoon an equal amount of the mixture onto each bread slice, and garnish with more basil before serving


You can use any type of tomato for this recipe – just make sure they are juicy and ripe! 
OPTIONS: Leave the garlic out of the topping if you prefer a less garlicky taste. Add a few drops of balsamic vinegar glaze to the top of each slice, if desired. You can also add avocado or cucumbers to the mixture. 

More topping ideas

There are endless possibilities for toppings – and not just the tomato and basil one I’m sharing today. Some more delicious and creative combinations include:

  • Freshly sliced peaches topped with a balsamic vinegar glaze
  • Vegan ricotta with sliced figs or fig jam
  • White beans, olive oil, sea salt, and some fresh rosemary blended into a spread
  • Diced tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, and capers with olive oil and thyme
  • Pesto topped with tomatoes and sauteed mushrooms
  • Vegan feta with diced cucumber and Kalamata olives with crushed garlic and parsley
  • Vegan ricotta with sliced ripe plums, shallots, cinnamon, and chopped walnuts

How to serve garlic tomato bruschetta

Serve this versatile treat as a tasty appetizer or a simple vegan meal. It makes a great side dish with spicy green beans or baked garlic mushrooms.

This recipe pairs perfectly with a glass of chilled Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio, or even a hearty ale. And it’s a quick and easy option for a potluck or summer barbecue.

So, give this easy tomato bruschetta recipe a try the next time you have some friends over or are looking for something new to put on your dinner table. It does not disappoint!

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