These Marinated Cherry Tomatoes with lemon juice, garlic, herbs and olive oil are the perfect summer side dish for grilled foods or picnics. This is a quick and easy recipe for a side dish or topping that you can put together in few minutes!
These flavorful cherry tomatoes marinated in herbs, garlic, lemon juice (or vinegar) and extra virgin olive oil (evoo) are a summer staple for my family. We add them over avocado toast or serve them over grilled foods. I even take a bowl to picnics and BBQs. They’re always a hit because everyone loves spooning some of these tomatoes over their plate:).
What Tomatoes to Use?
This side dish works better if you use:
- cherry tomatoes
- small medley tomatoes
- grape tomatoes
- small cocktail tomatoes
You need flavorful tomatoes for this side dish. Tomatoes have to be sweet, ripe and firm. If they’re too soft, they might make this side dish too soggy.
How to Marinate Tomatoes?
There are many ways to marinate tomatoes. I’ll summarize below how I marinate mine. Let’s go over the ingredients really quick as the process itself is just mixing the ingredients up. So the quality of the ingredients will make the dish!
- Tomatoes – You need good quality tomatoes full of flavor, preferably of the small variety that you can just cut in half.
- EVOO – You need extra virgin olive oil, don’t skimp on quality of olive oil. It does make a big difference on salads and side dishes.
- Acid – You need either lemon juice or red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar. They all work in different ways, slightly different taste. Whichever you use it’s up to your preference. My favorite combinations are based on what herb I’m using: cilantro/lemon juice or lime, parsley/red wine vinegar, mint or oregano/balsamic vinegar.
- Salt – let me say that you can always use whatever salt you have available. I’m partial to Mediterranean Sea Salt.
- Herbs – my favorite herbs to use are cilantro, parsley, mint, basil and oregano. I don’t mix and match in this recipe. But occasionally I’ll change it up. Early spring I love fresh cilantro and lemon juice over my marinated tomatoes.
- Garlic – Add as much as you can handle. I use a garlic press but if you have the patience to mince really, really thin you can also do that.
Add all ingredients together on a bowl. Mix it up and let marinate for at least an hour for flavors to mix together. If I make this recipe for a BBQ or picnic, I refrigerate the marinated tomatoes until we are ready to go to the event.
How Do You Serve Marinated Cherry Tomatoes?
These marinated cherry tomatoes help put a meal together. If you have roasted chicken leftover from one meal, rice leftover from another, serve the chicken and rice topped with these flavorful tomatoes and you got yourself a delicious meal.
- Often time I serve these tomatoes over chicken, fish or roasted meats.
- As an additional side dish on the table, family style and everyone can pick and choose what they add on their plate. Almost like a taco bar but for other foods.
- Topping for sourdough toasts – it can be ricotta toast or avocado toast or any toast. Then just spoon over some of these tomatoes and drizzle some balsamic glaze!! Yum, to die for!!
- BBQ or picnics – these marinated cherry tomatoes are a great side dish for summer BBQs and picnics.
Marinated Cherry Tomatoes
- 1 garlic press
- 1 lb cherry tomatoes
- 3 garlic cloves
- 0.5 tsp Mediterranean sea salt
- 1 lemon
- 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 3 tbsps freshly chopped cilantro use herbs of your choice
- 1-2 tbsps balsamic glaze use after marinating the tomatoes
- Wash, drain and pat dry the cherry tomatoes. Cut them in half and add on a bowl.
- Press or finely slice the garlic. Add it over the tomatoes. Add Mediterranean sea salt.
- Freshly squeeze half a lemon and add the juice over all the other ingredients. If lemon is small, squeeze the whole thing. If you are using a big, juicy lemon, squeeze half and slice the other half. Add the slices in the bowl.
- Finally add olive oil and cilantro. Mix all ingredients and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
- Add balsamic glaze to taste as you're serving the tomatoes. Enjoy:))
If you would like to save this recipe for later, please save it to your boards in Pinterest. Let me know in comments if you have any questions or feel free to tag me in social media if you made this recipe:).