Pesto Tomato Bites ~ Savory Simple

My garden has been yielding quite a few cherry tomatoes this summer.  I truly appreciate them because many of my other vegetables have been less than successful. My zucchini, squash, cucumbers, parsley and strawberries aren’t happy.  I’ve tried more sun, less sun, more water, less water…  I think part of the problem is that I underestimated how large the plants were going to get and didn’t buy big enough pots.  Oops.  I’m still learning the art of container gardening so a little victory here and there keeps me going.   My basil, sage, kale, jalapeno and bell pepper plants are all thriving!  And all three of my tomato plants are in excellent shape.

The quantity of tomatoes has caused me to seek out some new and creative ways to serve them.  I can only eat so much pasta and salad. I came up with this recipe for tomato pesto bites (if you can even call it that) as a treat for guests; something to serve with drinks on the back deck.  They aren’t filling but each bite provides a fresh burst of flavor.  This is laughably easy to make but sometimes simple is best, especially when guests are involved.  Everyone will appreciate these.  They’re pretty to look at and you get a lot of bang for your buck.  I’ve provided a basic pesto recipe but feel free to use your favorite!

Tomato Pesto Bites
Serves: 30 bites
  • 30 cherry tomatoes
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • ¼ cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 clove garlic (or more to taste)
  • 1 cups fresh basil leaves
  • ¼ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
  • ¼ extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Wash and dry the tomatoes.
  2. Slice a small section from the bottom of the tomato, just enough to create a flat surface for them to stand up.
  3. Slice off the top of the tomatoes, again not too much.
  4. Gently scoop out the seeds with your finger or the back of a spoon (try to keep the tomato shape in tact).
  5. Place all of the pesto ingredients in a food processor and blend.
  6. Fill each tomato with pesto (the more the better). The amount you use will vary based on the size of the tomato and how hollow the inside is.
  7. Before serving, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt.

  • Sharyn Dimmick

    Cute and tasty — and relatively low carb for people who care about that. Why didn’t I think of this?

  • Huy Nguyen

    What a simple recipe and a lovely picture!

  • Roger Stowell

    Beautiful shot. I’ve got a lot of tomatoes to get through too. Not a bad problem to have:)

  • Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella

    These look great! And the best cherry tomatoes I’ve tasted are from home gardens :D

  • Becca from It’s Yummilicious

    These are perfectly simple and simply perfect, Jen!! I haven’t been able to grow anything except a tomato plant that is as big as a Forsythia bush, but it hasn’t produced a single tomato. I’m baffled! I think the funky weather this year has confused the heck out of most vegetable gardens. Good thing you’ve got these beauties to work with! :)

  • melissa

    How wonderful about your garden! I just made pesto from our basil yesterday. I love the idea of pputting it in cherry tomatoes for sucha healthy, and pretty appetizer!

  • Jennifer M.

    Sometimes simple is best – these look like fun!

    Don’t worry about your garden. It’s definitely a learning curve the first few years. I’m impressed that you are doing container gardening – it sounds a lot harder to me than regular gardening! As for zucchinis, they get so big and spread out, I’m not sure a container would work. With your cucumbers, try a trellis – they should grow right up it, keeping your cukes from getting any kind of ground rot.

    My best advice is to write everything down so you remember what to do (and what not to do) for next year. Good luck!

  • kristy @ the wicked noodle

    ooooooh! I have a ton of cherry tomatoes in my garden and three kinds of pesto in my fridge right now. I’m making these today – YUM!

  • Baker Street

    I love anything pesto and these bite sized treats look great! I’m hosting a brunch in two days and this one is totally going on my list!

  • Valerie

    Gorgeous! I can practically taste the burst of flavor(s) just by looking at the photos! (Congrats on the success of your tomato plants!)

  • Cathy @ Noble Pig

    Simply adorable….I could easily do some damage with a plate of those!!

  • claire @ the realistic nutritionist

    these are fabulous!!

  • Jessica@AKitchenAddiction

    These are a great idea for an appetizer!

  • Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet

    I love it! My kids eat our cherry tomatoes so fast I never get to make anything with them, but this I really need to try!

  • Libby Bouma

    Yummy! This may be the perfect way to get my husband to eat tomatoes!

  • Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel

    Yes, yes! Love cherry tomatoes. Like, more than candy. And pesto, too. These are right up my perfect bite-sized food alley!

  • Mad Dog

    That’s a delicious recipe :-)

  • JulieD

    Looks beautiful!! I love pesto and this is such a beautiful summery appetizer…love it!

  • Jackie @ Domestic Fits

    Seriously gorgeous. Might just be the summers perfect appetizer :)

  • Laura Dembowski

    Your so lucky to have a garden at all. These look really cute and would be absolutely perfect for a dinner party. I’m making pesto tonight on some pasta.

  • fabiola@notjustbaked

    Oooo I never thought to stuff my little ones with pesto! This is awesome because I have pesto, and little tomatoes. I am having issue with my garden this year as well. Partly getting used to the Pacific Northwest summer versus hot hot hot Sacramento. But at least I have a handful of tomatoes for pasta, and these!

  • Laura (Tutti Dolci)

    These little bites are perfection! In fact, I forgive you for witholding the blueberry cookies for a few days since you’ve shared these with us. Pinned! :)

  • Rosemary Mullally

    Those look so tempting!

  • Bashar A.

    I love the save recipe button you added… now I can save my favorites in one central place :)
    Hope it wasn’t there the whole time!!!

  • Erin @ The Food Doctors

    These look beautiful, and I bet they explode with flavor in your mouth! Yum. Simple can definitely be fantastic!

  • Jenn and Seth

    these are absolutely adorable (i love bite size food) and so full of delicious flavor! love it!

  • Choc Chip Uru

    Cute and a small bite of flavour every time :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  • cheapdanny

    They look so cute and full of flavor with that pesto inside! Love the use of spoon to take the middle out of the cherry tomatoes.
    – allison

  • Marta @ What Should I Eat For Breakfast Today?

    pesto made out of tomatoes from your own garden has to be amazing.

  • Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic

    These are adorable! And such a great idea!

  • Carly @ Snack Therapy

    These are so simple yet so elegant. I love little bites like these- perfect for appetizers!

  • Cassie

    LOVE! Tomatoes and pesto go together perfectly. These are perfectly adorable!

  • Reem | Simply Reem

    These tomatoes look so adorably delicious…..

  • Riley

    Mmm, there’s nothing wrong with tomatoes, basil, and lots of cheese! These look delicious!

  • Debra

    What a great little appetizer! I’d be proud to serve these! Now my garden needs to produce more tomatoes. I have the squash and cukes, but the tomatoes are slow to do their thing! I think it’s the crazy weather. But hopefully I’ll get enough tomatoes to have at least one little dinner party to serve these cuties! Debra

  • Rosa

    A great idea! Those must taste absolutely divine.



  • Sawsan (Chef in disguise)

    I love how small they are, the perfect burst of summer flavors
    I have tried planting zucchini in pots with no luck too but the tomatoes work well

  • Nancy/SpicieFoodie

    These little bites look delicious! And how neat that they are grown by you- I love that. Thanks for sharing, can’t wait to give it a try.

  • Pure Complex

    If I could eat tomatoes.. I would be all over this dish right now lol. It just looks so colorful and wonderful for any afternoon or evening :)

  • Christina @ Sweet Pea’s Kitchen

    I love these simple little bites! I have a cherry tomato plant that it full of tomatoes right now. I think I need to give this one a try! :)

  • El

    How elegant- perfect for summer!

  • Anna @ hiddenponies

    So pretty and perfect! My mom has tons of cherry tomatoes this year – I’ll have to pass this on!

  • yummychunklet

    What perfectly plump little tomatoes!

  • Jenny @ BAKE

    these are so cute! what a brilliant canapé!

  • Nami | Just One Cookbook

    This is a real cute way to dress up cherry tomatoes. I have a lot of heirloom mini tomatoes although they are not homemade. I’m going to make these this weekend. Perfect summery recipe to enjoy the last weekend of summer break with the children!

  • Donna @ The Slow Roasted Italian

    Fabulous! Love these.

  • Manonnn

    Cute and simple I love that.

  • Chris at Hye Thyme Cafe

    Love the idea of these. I’ve made BLT cherry tomato bites, but I loooooooooooove pesto, so these would be awesome! Just FYI, I had clicked on your Vegetable and Lamb Samosas under your appetizers page and was brought here – might want to tweak your link. :)