Roasted heirloom tomatoes (heritage tomatoes) are quick to make, simple and versatile, the perfect solution if you have a tomato surplus! I will show you how best to prepare and roast tomatoes when they’re not the same size, color, and shape. Make them plain or with a glaze, and serve them on their own or with toppings, there are lots of options for you here!
👩🍳 Christine’s Notes: An easy summer staple that we can have lots of fun with!
Great tomatoes will always be my favorite part of summer eating, and while last year I played a lot with sauce making, this year I am doing a lot of roasting. And we are loving it!
The particular challenge when it comes to roasting heirloom tomatoes is their differing sizes, shapes and water content. We’ll talk a little more about how to ensure your success here despite those inconsistencies, and the end result is totally worth it. I love how can you end up with tiny blistered cherry tomatoes, alongside some larger melt in the mouth slices, enjoying a range of sweetness and texture all on one plate. The best part? We can get them roasted in just 30 minutes oven time!
I have made and served these in lots of different ways, but the recipe I’m sharing here is deliberately pared back, with the tomatoes roasted simply in olive oil and salt. BUT with lots of options for different flavors, and serving suggestions too. Whether you want an appetizer, side dish or a meal based around your tomatoes, you’ll find some inspiration here.
🔪🍅How to prepare the tomatoes to go in the oven
We want to try to prepare our tomatoes so that the cook times for each of them will be roughly the same. Since heirlooms are inconsistent in size, shape and water content, it’s never going to be perfect. We will inevitably get some tomatoes more well roasted than others and that’s totally OK! If we cook with heirloom tomatoes we do need to expect a little more of a rustic finish. But as a guide:
- Slice larger tomatoes into 3-4 thick slices widthwise.
- Slice medium tomatoes into halves.
- Leave baby tomatoes whole.
Then arrange them on the baking tray so that there is some space in between each individual tomato and they are not overlapping whatsoever. The space around them ensures they can properly brown, that their juices won’t overwhelm the pan and essentially boil the tomatoes instead of roasting them. This is especially important when we want the tomatoes to roast quickly.
Seasonings, herbs and flavor enhancers
If you are making these roasted tomatoes to incorporate into another dish or recipe and don’t want them pre-flavored in any way, just make them plain, exactly as written. However if you’re serving them on their own, as a side dish or appetizer, there is much fun to be had!
Adds ins for the roasting pan:
- Minced garlic is always a winner! For each tray of tomatoes, mix 1-2 cloves of minced garlic in a little olive oil and then drizzle over the tomatoes.
- A light drizzle of balsamic vinegar and honey over the top of the tomatoes will add even more caramelization and flavor.
- A mixed Italian seasoning is also delicious. You could also experiment with zaatar or dukkah to take these in a more Middle Eastern direction.
- I haven’t tried this myself, but if you like spice, brushing a little harissa paste over the tomatoes would be worth trying too.
Great toppings for a plate of roasted tomatoes if you’re serving as a side dish or appetizer:
- A drizzle of pesto
- Burrata or buffalo mozzarella
- Crumbled feta
- Toasted pine nuts
- Freshly torn basil
How to make a meal out of your roasted heirloom tomatoes
- Serve over pasta tossed in butter or pesto.
- Piled high on sourdough toast, with burrata on top.
- Mixed in with some white beans, served over a grain of choice. Try making these Burrata Bowls using heirlooms instead of cherry tomatoes.
- Try using them instead of fresh tomatoes in this 15 Minute Halloumi Tomato Salad or this Caprese Salad with Pistachios & Pomegranate.
- Use them to make this Roasted Tomato & Mascarpone Gnocchi recipe. You’ll need to adapt things a little bit – the larger heirlooms take up more space then just cherry tomatoes so you won’t be able to cook the full amount in the casserole dish but you can have an overflow baking tray to cook the larger tomatoes on.
- Make a quiche with them (try this Easiest Roasted Tomato Basil Quiche).
Quick Roasted Heirloom Tomatoes
- Heirloom tomatoes, mix of large and small
- olive oil
- extras – garlic, honey, balsamic vinegar, dried herbs
- Preheat the oven to 200C / 390F for a normal oven, or 180C / 360F for a fan (convection) oven.
- Prepare the tomatoes. Slice the larger ones into thick slices (3-4 per tomato), halve the smaller ones and leave the baby sized tomatoes whole. Brush a layer of oil over your baking sheet, arrange the tomatoes on top (leaving lots of space between them) and then drizzle with additional olive oil and salt. If you're using garlic, honey or balsamic vinegar, drizzle those over the top now too.
- Roast in the oven at for 30 minutes or until they are browned, reduced and jammy.
- Serve with your choice of toppings, use in a recipe as directed, or store in the fridge for 3-4 days.