This Cherry Tomato Salad with Roasted Lemons is the perfect side dish. Sweet tomatoes combine with a tangy vinaigrette and delicious roasted lemons.
This cherry tomato salad evokes memories of a salad that my mom used to make in the summertime using fresh homegrown tomatoes and a simple light dressing of olive oil, red wine vinegar, oregano and a sprinkling of sugar, which would always be adjusted depending on the sweetness of the tomatoes that year. It was such a simple salad, but so delicious at the same time. And, my favorite part was using a loaf of Italian bread to mop up the leftover juices from the tomatoes after the salad was gone.
Recently, as I was browsing through Yottam Ottolenghi’s latest cookbook, Plenty More, I came across his recipe for a Tomato & Roasted Lemon Salad and was immediately brought back to those summers in New York, although his version of this cherry tomato salad is very different from my mom’s. His recipe incorporates sage, allspice, pomegranate seeds and pomegranate molasses. It’s a much more exotic spin…
I made his recipe, and I do have to say that it was delicious. Sweet and savory, with unexpected spices… I would have never thought to combine sage with allspice. But, my favorite part of his take on the cherry tomato salad was the roasted lemons that he incorporated into it.
Although I did love his twist on the traditional cherry tomato salad, I was longing for the flavors from my past. I wanted a bit more tang and the flavor of oregano that I love so much.
So I put my Italian twist on his salad.
This Cherry Tomato Salad with Roasted Lemons is a mashup.
It’s basically my mom’s Italian recipe with the addition of those lovely roasted lemons that Yottam shared in his book.
Those lemons. They are just so good!
Thinly sliced and roasted with the skin on, they become slightly caramelized and mellow out in flavor as they roast in the oven. They perfectly compliment the sweetness of the tomatoes and lend one more layer to my mom’s already amazing cherry tomato salad.
This salad is my new twist on an old favorite.
What can I do with lots of cherry tomatoes?
Make this cherry tomato salad!!! It’s a great way to use up any extra cherry tomatoes that you may have on hand if you’re a gardener. I know that they can get kind of out of hand during the end of the growing season.
How to easily cut cherry tomatoes:
Use two deli container lids and sandwich the tomatoes between them. Press down gently on the top lid while you slice through horizontally with a knife. Total game changer!
What’s the difference between cherry tomatoes and grape tomatoes?
Basically, their shape. Grape tomatoes tend to grow more in an oval shape (like a grape) whereas cherry tomatoes, grow to be more round. You can use either in this recipe.
Note: As you can see, technically the salad photographed here should be called a grape tomato salad. But they really do work interchangeably.
Cherry tomato salad variations:
- With Mozzarella: Throw some cubed mozzarella or pearl mozzarella balls into this salad for a delicious twist.
- With Cucumber: Some diced cucumber would add a yummy, refreshing crunch to this salad.
- With Feta: Add some cubed feta to this salad for a salty, creamy kick.
- With Balsamic. Swap out the red wine vinegar for balsamic.
What to serve with it:
- Easy Roasted Chicken
- Lemon Mascarpone Risotto
- Tuna Noodle Casserole with Gruyere Cheese and Piquillo Peppers
- Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Charred Lemon Chimichurri
Wine pairings for tomato salad:
- Try a Pinot Grigio or a Sauvignon Blanc with this salad – Their bright flavors mirror those in the salad and compliment it nicely.
If you loved this cherry tomato salad recipe I would appreciate it so much if you would give it a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish are share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings.
More cherry tomato recipes:
- How to Make Sun Dried Tomatoes
- Israeli Couscous with Tomatoes
- Easy Poached Fish Recipe with Tomatoes
- Creamy Tomato Risotto Recipe
- Squid Ink Pasta with Shrimp & Cherry Tomatoes
Cherry Tomato Salad with Roasted Lemons
- 2 lemons (halved horizontally, seeds removed, and cut into paper-thin slices)
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 2/3 cups cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1/3 cup parsley (finely chopped)
- ½ cup mint leaves (finely chopped)
- ½ cup red onion halved crosswise and thinly sliced into half rings (halved crosswise and thinly sliced into half rings (about ½ onion) )
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- Preheat the oven to 325ºF.
- Fill a small saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add lemon slices and blanch for 2 minutes. Drain well. Combine 1 tablespoon oil, sugar, oregano and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Add lemon slices and mix well to combine. Spread the lemon slices out in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with a silpat or parchment paper. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- Combine the tomatoes, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper, vinegar parsley, mint and onions in a bowl. Add the lemon slices and stir gently to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust as desired with additional salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
This post was originally published in 2018. It was updated in 2021 to add new photographs and information. The recipe remains the same. Enjoy!