Tomato salad is one of the most beautiful side dishes you can create and with the gorgeous colored small cherry tomatoes its as delicious as it is striking. Done in just minutes, this recipe is an instant go to covered in balsamic vinegar and garlic, making it a dish everyone will dive in for seconds.
Best Cherry Tomato Salad Side Dish
Of course you know I adore tomatoes, so make sure you check out these other incredible tomato side dish options that will blow your mind, like melty cheesy hot caprese dip, caprese salad salsa and the BEST Caprese pizza out there.
Spring is here and with that the onslaught of tomato plants are everywhere. Personally I have never grown a tomato plant, but walking through the garden center everywhere makes me wish I was a better gardener.
Because I freaking adore tomatoes.
From adding them on a burger to a full on Caprese salad, I really cannot get enough.
I know technically they are a fruit, which accounts for how just darn GOOD they are, but I’ll continue to live in the misnomer they are veggies and good for me. And I love these Wild Wonders tomatoes the most – they just look so darn PRETTY.
I feel zero guilt diving into this tomato salad or bringing along to a party for everyone to enjoy.
Plus, this tomato salad recipe is done in under 5 minutes and actually tastes amazing.
Tomato Salad Recipe
In this tomato salad you can see that I used some pretty rainbow cherry tomatoes.
You can typically find these in places like Fresh Market or Publix. I love these tomatoes because they have a beautiful texture and color for any salad and make kinda a splashy salad to show case at a holiday.
That being said, you can use regular cherry tomatoes if you prefer, and combined with the cucumbers, makes a pretty little Christmas Salad, so there really isn’t a way to go wrong.
Cherry Tomato Salad
Making the best tomato salad isn’t about adding a million things to it. In fact, some of the best tomato salad is simple with just balsamic vinegar and small bits of cucumber. This is one of those super fresh tomato salads and is a cant go wrong way to enjoy lunch or even has a side dish for dinner. And if you use the same kind of tomatoes I did, its a beautiful rainbow salad!
Plus, the seasonings and balsamic make it not only quick, but a healthy salad.
Scroll to the bottom for a printable version of this post, including all measurements and instructions, so you can follow along in your kitchen without being on your phone.
Here is what you need to gather to get started:
Cherry Tomato & Cucumber Salad Recipe
Add tomatoes and cucumbers together in a mixing bowl and set aside.
Tomatoes Tip: You notice that we did not cut the tomatoes. Not everyone loves a full cherry tomato because in some cases they can be a pretty big bite.
In the case of this salad, the choice is totally yours, but be aware cutting your tomatoes may result in a lot juicer salad as they tomatoes own juice will leak out into the bowl.
This may be a good thing for you if you love that. Either way, just realize that altering it may alter how you need to do your ingredients.
In a small bowl, add oil, vinegar, sugar and spices. Mix well.
Seasoning Tip: As with all recipes, you need to add salt. That being said, I adore the crunch of a sea salt.
It’s a lot bigger of a granule and it works for me. Most people just like the taste of salt, in which case fine grain works just as well. Because this salad marinates, your salt may break down.
If you want that final crunch of some extra salt flavor, grind a bit on prior to serving direction on your salad.
Drizzle your marinade over tomatoes and mix well.
While this can be eaten immediately, marinate for at least an hour prior to serving or overnight if you really want to get that flavor in there.
Stir fresh tomatoes and cucumbers well before serving as your spices and oils may have settled disproportionately at the bottom of your bowl.
Tomato Salad Additives
This salad is super simple and it just works. In fact, I just ate the rest of this for my lunch and YUM! But if you want to make this tomato salad more robust and even MORE delicious, here are a few things you can add or substitute
Red Onions – I like to slice these julienne style to make for easy fork pick up
Dried Basil to Fresh Basil – You cant go wrong with fresh basil. Tip: Buy a basil plant and keep it in the kitchen and pick the leaves as you need them!
Dried Garlic to Minced Garlic – You can buy huge cans of minced garlic and fresh always tastes better. Just adjust to taste
Bits of Mozzarella or Burratta – Fresh mozzarella can be served in chunks and with burrata, just pour the tomatoes right over the top
Feta Cheese – crumbled up and mixed in
Avocado – If you add avocado to this tomato salad, just add it right before serving so it doesn’t go brown
Other Salads that feature Tomatoes
- Cucumber Tomato salad with Feta
- Caprese Salad with Mozzarella
- Cucumber Tomato with Avocado
- Tomato Mozzarella Lady Bugs Appetizer
- Mediterranean Shrimp Salad
Cherry Tomato Salad with Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 pounds small whole cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 cucumber - sliced and quartered
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1-2 tsp dried basil - to taste
- Add whole cherry tomatoes and quartered cucumbers together in a mixing bowl and set aside.
- In a small bowl, add olive oil, Balsamic vinegar, sugar and all remaining seasonings.
- Mix seasonings and wet ingredients well together.
- Drizzle balsamic vinaigrette dressing over tomatoes and cucumbers and mix well.
- Marinate cherry tomato salad for at least an hour or overnight for best flavors and to allow the Balsamic and tomatoes to combine.
- Stir tomato salad well before serving to make sure there is no settling of Balsamic vinegar dressing.
- This salad is amazing alone, but if you would like to make your cherry salad more robust, you can easily add chopped avocado, sliced red onion, or even bits of fresh mozzarella.
- *See full blog post for additional instructions while recreating this easy salad side dish recipe
Remember that you can follow all my recipes easily right on Pinterest here!