These open faced tomato bagel sandwiches are the perfect breakfast or lunch when you have a surplus of summer tomatoes! Topped with fresh garden herbs, this is a simple idea that comes together easily in the summer with simple ingredients.
This is one of those recipes that is more an IDEA than a recipe, but if you came here because you googled “tomato bagels” wondering whether this was a Thing, whether it was a good idea, well let me answer you with a YES. It is a good idea you had there.
So let’s talk about how to make it a success.
In the summer I frequently order boxes of heritage (heirloom) tomatoes from the Isle of Wight and they’re pretty much the highlight of my summer. As you can tell from the sheer volume of tomato recipes we have floating around on this site.
Inevitably we end up with leftover tomatoes here and there that need to be used up in quick lunches. These tomato bagels came out of that. I made them constantly, and I tried several different things, and this was ultimately the combo I tended to settle on.
It takes, like, 5 minutes to put together and it is so so tasty, fresh and filling.
Tomato Bagel Tips and Variations
- I like to add a layer of cream cheese at the bottom. Bagels are so dense and dry, cream cheese really is my perfect base for any kind of bagel sandwich. Regular Philadelphia cream cheese. Lots of fancier recipes than mine would use a spreadable goat cheese, and that is of course a brilliant idea from a flavor perspective. For me though, I like the milkiness and moisture content of the cream cheese. Of course, you can decide what works best for you!
- I am using big heirloom / heritage / beefsteak tomatoes which are of course delightful. However, I have made this with a pile of quartered cherry tomatoes and it’s brilliant that way too. A little messier, with bits falling off, but super tasty.
- My topping is a bunch of fresh summer herbs quickly sliced up with a pair of kitchen scissors. I have chives, basil, coriander (cilantro) and mint in the mix. You can also just use basil. You don’t need all the others.
- I have, however, made this with a sprinkling of dukkah when I don’t have fresh herbs and that is lovely too – a better year round option.
- I like to finish off with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. This is optional – you could also use a salad dressing, glaze or sauce that you enjoy.
Tomato Bagel Open Sandwiches
- 2 bagels, sliced into halves
- 3-4 large tomatoes, sliced into thick slices
- 4 Tbsp cream cheese
- 2 Tbsp fresh herbs – I used basil, mint, coriander (cilantro) and chives, finely chopped
- olive oil and balsamic vinegar, optional extra garnish
- Toast your bagels and spread cream cheese over the base.
- Arrange tomato slices on top. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Add fresh herbs on top and, if using, a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.