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Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini

by | Jun 29, 2021 | Recipes

An easy and light appetizer, this Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini is full of flavor. A classic combination of tomatoes, red onion, garlic, and fresh basil piled high over toasted slices of Italian bread–all ready in about 20 minutes! This dish is sure to please your palate and set the vibe for a great night together with your better half or a group of friends.

Plate of Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini slices served with white wine

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Often times, I’m not in the mood for a full-on dinner. So, instead, I’ll put together a mini charcuterie board, a veggie snack plate, or something a bit fancier like this Super Simple Bruschetta Crostini. I love the simplicity of bruschetta. It’s an approachable dish, and it looks so beautiful that it seems more complicated than it really is to make.

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INGREDIENTS    SWAPS    TIPS & TRICKS    HOW-TO    RECIPE

How This Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini Came to Be

There’s a place here in Brooklyn we order in from often that always has a wonderful Chicken Bruschetta dish. Their portions are ginormous, and they always give me Italian bread with the meal. I can never finish it in a single sitting. Hell, I can’t even finish it in two. One day I was about to dish up some of the leftovers and put it over a bed of lettuce when I realized I still had the Italian bread to use up. So I figured why not make little crostini instead? It was so delicious and easy to make that I was dumbfounded as to why I hadn’t ever thought of making it before.

Now, it’s guaranteed on regular rotation during Summer for me, especially when my tomato and basil plants are pushing out their beautiful bounty at peak season. And in the off months, I just pick up a dry pint of cherry or grape tomatoes and a package of basil from the grocery store whenever the craving for this simple, fresh dish hits.

Gonna try out this recipe?

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Ingredients For Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini

  • Cherry or Grape Tomatoes — I prefer to use cherry or grape tomatoes because they’re already bite sized, so even though the recipe says to quarter them you could just cut them in half and save time.
  • Red Onion — I prefer red onion in this dish. The red onion has a great balance of sweet (like a sweet onion) and sharp (like a white onion), which really lends itself to this dish.
  • Garlic — Garlic ties everything in this dish together for me. My recipe calls for mincing the garlic and adding it straight to the bruschetta mixture. If that’s too garlic forward for your taste, I suggest cutting a clove in half lengthwise and rubbing the cut side down on your bread slices after they’ve been toasted. This will still give you some garlic flavor, and a great deal of the aroma of the garlic.
  • Fresh Basil — The basil in this recipe needs to be fresh. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work when you try to swap out dried basil for the fresh. I like the way it looks visually to slice the basil into thin ribbons. If you hear the word “chiffonade” and start running in the opposite direction, just go ahead and chop up the basil instead. No hard feelings, boo.
  • Olive Oil — Everyone’s idea of a good quality olive oil is different. I like to use extra virgin olive oil. But when it comes down to it, I say just use whatever brand and kind of olive oil you have on hand.
  • Kosher Salt — I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. I prefer kosher salt because the salt grains are larger and this helps me better control the amount of salt I’m putting into a dish. Always remember to taste along the way when adding your salt so that you avoid over-salting your dish.
  • Italian Bread — I live in Brooklyn, so Italian bread seems to be more readily available than a French baguette or a delectably crusty loaf of artisan bread. Just roll with the punches here and use whatever kind of long, thin loaf you can find.
  • Balsamic Vinegar or Glaze — I prefer to use a balsamic glaze because it has a thicker consistency. My favorite to use is balsamic vinegar glaze with figs. It’s like this little flavor bomb of acid and sweetness that makes me keep coming back for another crostini even when I’m already full.

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Slices of tomato bruschetta crostini served on a plate with wine

Ingredient Swaps & Variations

  • Roma or Beefsteak Tomatoes – You can easily swap the cherry or grape tomatoes for Roma (“plum”) or beefsteak tomatoes. If you use these, dice them into bite-sized chunks (1/4-inch to 1/2-inch).
  • Sweet Onion – If you want less bite than a red onion brings, swap it out for a sweet onion like a Vidalia onion.
  • Shallot – If you want less of an onion flavor overall, swap out the onion for shallot. Shallot gives off a very mild flavor that is a mix between onion and garlic.
  • More Olive Oil – If you’re not a fan of balsamic vinegar, swap it out with a drizzle of added olive oil on top of the crostini just before serving.

Recipe Tips & Tricks

What to Remember – When cutting your bread to make the crostini, pay special attention to the thickness of your slices. You want the slices thick enough to be a sturdy foundation for a mountain of juicy tomatoes, but not so thick that they’re difficult to bite through.

What to Avoid – Avoid using overly ripe tomatoes. Because the tomatoes in this recipe won’t be cooked down, texture really matters here. Make sure your tomatoes are nicely red and ripe, but still firm. Also, and perhaps more importantly, take care to avoid burning your bread slices. Once you place them into the broiler, it is very easy from them going from golden brown to burned within the blink of an eye. So be sure to keep a watchful eye on your bread instead of walking away.

Ways to Use Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini Leftovers – You can make a quick and deliciously filling salad by serving the bruschetta over a bed of mixed greens with some grilled chicken or steak. Or why not add a pop of fresh flavor to your morning breakfast? Scramble up an egg or two while toasting a slice of bread. Spread some ricotta cheese over the toast if you have it, then add on the scrambled eggs. Finish off by topping with the tomato bruschetta and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar or olive oil.

Close up shot of Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini slices on a plate

Recipe Notes

Storage – Store leftover tomato bruschetta in an airtight glass or plastic container in the fridge. Stored properly, the bruschetta will stay fresh for approximately 2-3 days. On about the third day after you’ve made the bruschetta, it will unfortunately begin to look a little less appealing visually–BUT–it will still taste fabulously delicious and be okay to eat up to 7 days after you make it. To store leftover bread, place it in a large ziploc bag and store it at room temperature on your kitchen counter.

Serving Size – A serving of this Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini is 3 crostini.

Servings & Nutrition – This recipe makes 12 crostini. Each serving has approximately 569 calories, 77 g of carbohydrates, 11 g of protein, 24 g of fat, and 21 g of sugar. For the full recipe and additional nutritional information, please see the recipe card below.

How to Make Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini

Step 1. Wash your tomatoes and then pat them dry with a towel. Quarter each tomato and add to a large mixing bowl. Grab your red onion and cut two slices, each approximately 1/4 – inch thick. Cut the onion slices lengthwise and then crosswise to dice. Add the onions to the mixing bowl.

Step 2. Thinly slice your clove of garlic lengthwise to create planks, then cut each plank lengthwise into “sticks”. Finely cut the sticks crosswise to mince and add the minced garlic to the mixing bowl. Wash your basil leaves and then pat them dry with a towel. Stack the leaves one on top of the next. Cut off the stems and discard. Next, cut the basil into thin strips. Add ¾ of your strips to the mixing bowl and set the remaining basil aside for garnish.

Step 3. Turn on your oven broiler to high and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Allow the oven to heat up while you continue onto making the bruschetta mixture. Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil over the veggie mixture and then sprinkle in a pinch of salt. Stir to combine the veggies and thoroughly mix everything together. Set the mixture aside.

Step 4. Using a serrated knife, slice through the loaf on a diagonal angle. Cut your slices approximately ½ to ¾ inch thick, and then arrange slices on the lined baking sheet. Drizzle the remaining olive oil over the slices and use a pastry brush to gently spread the oil evenly.

Step 5. Place your baking sheet of oiled bread slices on the oven rack closest to your broiler. Toast the bread for 1-3 minutes, or until a golden brown. Please note that this time will vary based upon your oven. Once golden brown, remove the bread slices from the oven.

Step 6. Arrange your slices on a serving platter and top with heaping spoonfuls of the bruschetta mixture. Drizzle each slice with a little balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinegar glaze (optional). Then sprinkle your slices with the reserved basil and serve.

Place setting and plate of Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini served with white wine

If you make this recipe, tag me in your photos on Instagram—I love seeing what you guys decided to make!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I leave the onions out of my bruschetta completely?

Certainly. Many tomato bruschetta recipes don’t include the onion, so I’d say leaving it out entirely is totally fair game.

I can’t stand the taste of raw garlic. Could I use roasted garlic instead?

Oh my good God yes!! In fact, please do because I’m sure it would make these crostini even more amazing. I would roast up an entire head of garlic and then mash up the roasted cloves into a paste. Then spread the paste onto your bread slices just before topping with the bruschetta mixture.

What kind of goes well with Tomato Bruschetta?

I’m generally a rule breaker when it comes to food, so I say drink whatever wine you prefer most. However, I typically have white wine when I make tomato bruschetta for myself or others. I don’t want something like a bold red to overpower the delicate flavors of the bruschetta. At the same time, I don’t recommend pairing with a sweet wine because you want the natural sweetness of the tomatoes in the bruschetta to be able to shine through when you’re enjoying the crostini. So I tend to stick to a dry white wine like Chardonnay or a white wine that is considered to be somewhere between dry and sweet, like a Riesling.

Other Recipes You May Enjoy

Plate of Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini slices served with white wine

Super Simple Tomato Bruschetta Crostini

Yield: 12 crostini
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

A classic combination of tomatoes, red onion, garlic, and fresh basil piled high over toasted Italian bread, these crostini are a quick appetizer sure to please your palate.

Ingredients

  • 1 dry pint of cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 ¼-inch slices of a large red onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 8-10 basil leaves, thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 1 loaf of Italian bread
  • Balsamic vinegar or glaze (optional)

Instructions

1. Add the onion, garlic, tomatoes, and ¾ of the basil to a large mixing bowl. Set the remaining basil aside.

2. Drizzle mixture with 1 tbsp of olive oil and sprinkle in salt. Stir to mix well and evenly coat the mixture with the olive oil.

3. Turn on your oven broiler to high and line a small baking sheet with aluminum foil.

4. Cut the loaf of bread into ½-3/4 inch thick slices. Arrange the slices on the baking sheet.

5. Drizzle each slice with the remaining olive oil and use a pastry brush to gently spread the oil around the surface of the bread slice.

6. Place the baking sheet in the oven and broil the bread for 1-3 minutes until golden brown. Carefully watch the bread as it toasts because you can go from golden brown to completely burnt very quickly.

7. Remove the bread slices from the oven and top with the bruschetta.

8. Drizzle your crostini with the balsamic vinegar/glaze, if desired. Garnish your crostini with the remaining basil and serve.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 3 crostini
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 569Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 706mgCarbohydrates: 77gFiber: 5gSugar: 21gProtein: 11g

This nutrition data is provided and calculated by Nutritionix. Please keep in mind that your specific nutritional values may vary based on the brand of ingredients you use to make this recipe.

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Hey there! I’m Krystal, the sassy-mouthed, self-taught, home cook behind the content here at Sweet, Savory & Sassy. I have a deep love for sharing food with people and showing folks just how easy it really is to make dishes that will bring a little extra joy to those you love. There’s nothing like making something special for friends and family and seeing their face light up in delight during that first bite!
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