featured cover image of the baked tomato basil tart
Lunches, Side Dish

The Best Tomato Tart With Basil Pesto and Burrata Cheese

Cooks in 30 Minutes Difficulty Medium 0 comments

This tantalizing rustic tomato tart perfectly combines the robust flavors of in-season tomatoes, fragrant store-bought basil pesto, and creamy burrata cheese, all nestled atop a buttery, golden crust. The beauty of this tart lies in its harmonious medley of contrasting elements, creating bold flavors that delight the palate. The crisp, tender pastry crust provides a sturdy foundation, showcasing the vibrant, ripe tomatoes at their peak. A generous smear of basil pesto blankets the tart’s surface, making this a great brunch, lunch, or dinner dish.

I love the classic pairing of basil and tomato. It’s so fresh and bursting with the bright flavors of tomato season. This savory tart has a rustic charm, and we used a springform pan to keep the pastry in shape as it baked, though a galette would work beautifully, too. The type of tomato you choose will impact how juicy it turns out. With creamy burrata nestled among the vibrant tomatoes and aromatic basil, this tart offers a luxurious texture that melts in your mouth. It is perfect for summer BBQs and makes a delightful appetizer or side dish sure to garner rave reviews.

​If you love great tomato recipes, you’ll also enjoy a bowl of this tasty tomato-cucumber salad. 

recipe card image of a slice of tomato tart

Why You Will Love This Tomato Pastry Tart:

Simple Ingredients: This recipe uses straightforward, fresh ingredients that are easy to find, making it accessible for cooks of all levels.

Delectable Flavor Combination: The harmonious blend of fresh tomatoes, basil pesto, and creamy burrata creates a mouthwatering and satisfying taste experience.

Versatility: The tart recipe is highly adaptable, allowing for substitutions and variations to suit personal preferences and dietary needs, ensuring everyone can enjoy it.

​Let’s Get Started Making This Ripe Tomato Tart:

​We used butter pastry, and the result was a lovely, stiff, flaky pastry that held up to all the fresh juices that oozed out of the baked tomato. (More on extra juicy tomatoes down the page.) It was perfect.

​Step one in making the pastry crust is mixing the flour and salt. Using a pastry knife, add the cold butter and shortening until the dough forms small pea-sized pieces. You can then add the water. Cold ice water is best to prevent the butter/shortening from melting in the crust. After you’ve worked the pastry into a smooth, non-sticky ball, wrap it tightly in saran and place it in the fridge to chill for one hour.

Note: Pastry can be successfully made with the food processor if you prefer. 

​This chilling process will make rolling the dough a lot easier. I can’t tell you how many times I immediately tried working the dough in my impatient youth. Working it right away will result in needing more flour on the work surface as the dough is too sticky to work. The more flour you add, the more challenging the pastry becomes. So chill the dough, folks; it’s worth the wait.

Rolling the chilled dough to about 1/8″ thickness on a lightly floured surface will allow for a crisp yet flaky crust when baked. We also prebake the crust for ten minutes, which will keep it from getting soggy after we’ve added all the juicy elements.

You can make a straight galette if you don’t mind the sides being rolled. Otherwise, put the dough in a round pan with a slight edge. We improvised here and used a 12″ springform pan, which actually made removal very easy.

​Once you have the tart pastry in the baking tray/pan, poke holes with a fork in the bottom. This is known as docking, and it allows the pie to not puff when baking. We want to dock pastry when it’s being prebaked before filling.

Note: Your baking rack for pies and pasty should always be in the middle of the oven. 

​After baking in a pre-heated 350F oven for ten minutes, remove the tart and spread the entire surface with a generous amount of the store-bought pesto. We just used a jarred variety from the store. You can make your own pesto if you have time.

Wash and thinly slice the fresh summer tomatoes before arranging them on top of the pesto. If your tomatoes are added in thick slices, you risk having an overly juicy tart. Make the tomato slices a quarter inch thick at most. You may use osmosis to remove the extra juices if the tomatoes are super juicy. To do this, simply salt the sliced tomato and let sit for ten minutes. Pat the tomato slices off before adding to the tart. The salt pulls the moisture from the tomatoes. You only need to do this if they are extremely ripe. 

Remember, we want only a single layer of tomato on the tart. So arrange the sliced tomatoes to cover the pesto uniformly for the best presentation and bite when eating. Depending on the size of the tomato used, you may need more or fewer slices. Large tomatoes, like juicy heirloom tomatoes, will, of course, cover the tart faster than small cocktail tomatoes. 

The next step is adding the ball of burrata cheese. It comes in a softball form if you don’t need to get more familiar with this cheese. It has a thicker exterior with a soft, almost liquid fresh cheese interior. Scoop a few spoonfuls of this delicious creamy fresh mozzarella cheese around the top of the tart. We aren’t going for full coverage, as it will spread while baking.

​Pop the whole tart in the 350F oven for 20-30 minutes bake time. You will know it is baked completely when the crust is golden brown. Remove it from the oven and allow it to cool slightly before slicing. Remember, wet ingredients like tomato and cheese will have immense heat and can burn mouths. After removing the tart from the oven, garnish with fresh basil leaves for a burst of herbaceous flavor and a beautiful presentation.

​Serve the tart while warm and fresh. With a sharp knife, cut it into 8 equal portions and serve along with grilled meats for a complete dinner or as a great summer appetizer. 

​Ingredients:

Butter: Provides richness and flakiness to the tart crust, ensuring a tender texture.

Flour: Forms the structure of the crust, giving it strength and stability.

Salt: Enhances the richness of the crust by balancing the other ingredients.

Water: Binds the dough ingredients together, creating a cohesive, workable pastry.

Jarred Basil Pesto: Adds a robust, herbaceous flavor base that complements the fresh ingredients.

Fresh Basil: Contributes fresh, aromatic notes that enhance the tart’s flavor profile.

​Tomato: Brings juiciness and acidity, which balance the richness of the cheese and pesto.

​Burrata Cheese: Adds a creamy, luxurious texture with its soft interior, indulging each bite.

​Substitutions And Add-Ins For This Fresh Tomato Tart:

Butter: Substitute with margarine or a plant-based butter alternative for a dairy-free option.

Flour: Using a gluten-free flour blend can make the crust suitable for those with gluten sensitivities.

Salt: Swap with sea or kosher salt for a slightly different flavor.

Cold Water: Use chilled vegetable broth or milk (dairy or non-dairy) to add a subtle flavor to the crust.

Jarred Basil Pesto: For a different flavor profile, substitute with homemade pesto, sun-dried tomato pesto, or tapenade.

Fresh Basil: Although basil is THE classic pairing with tomato, you can replace it with fresh oregano, thyme, or arugula for a different herbaceous note.

Tomato: For a variation in size and sweetness, use smaller cocktail tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, or even sun-dried tomatoes.

Burrata Cheese: Substitute with fresh mozzarella, ricotta, or goat cheese for a different creamy texture and flavor.

​For added depth of flavor, consider incorporating freshly ground black pepper into the tart, which complements the burrata’s richness and the tomatoes’ tanginess. Grated Parmesan cheese can also be sprinkled over the top before baking, adding a savory, nutty layer that enhances the overall taste and adds a delightful crispness to the crust. These add-ins can elevate the tart and make it even more irresistible.

Cutting a piece close up from the baked tomato tart

​Expert Tips For Best Results, Serving And Storing Suggestions For This Tomato Basil Tart:

Tip #1: Use Cold Ingredients for the Crust: Ensure the butter and water are very cold before incorporating them into the dough. This prevents the butter from melting and helps create a flakier, more tender crust.

Tip #2: Prebake the Crust: Always dock (poke holes) and prebake the crust for about ten minutes before adding the pesto, tomatoes, and cheese. This helps to prevent the crust from being soggy from excess tomato juices and ensures a crisp, sturdy base.

Tip #3: Remove Excess Moisture From Tomato: If using larger juicy tomatoes, sprinkle the slices with salt and let them sit for a few minutes to absorb excess moisture. Pat them dry before placing them on the tart to prevent the crust from becoming too wet during baking.

​This fresh tart showcases the delectable combination of fresh tomatoes, basil pesto, and creamy burrata cheese. It’s the perfect way to enjoy a dish made with simple ingredients that come together to create a rich and satisfying flavor. For the best experience, serve the tart warm, allowing the fresh ingredients to shine and impress your guests.

This tart is best enjoyed immediately after baking for optimal freshness, but if you have leftovers, store them covered in the fridge. To reheat, warm the tart in a low oven to maintain the crust’s crispness and the burrata cheese’s delectable texture.

This tart should NOT be frozen. 

We’d love to hear about your experience making this tomato basil pesto burrata tart! Please rate the recipe and leave a comment sharing any tips or substitutions you tried. Your feedback helps us improve and inspires others to give this delectable dish a try.

 

recipe card image of a slice of tomato tart

Tomato Pesto Burrata Tart

Amber Bondar
This summer fresh tomato basil pesto burrata tart is the ideal appetizer or dinner accompaniment. It's bold basil and tomato flavors are accented by the luxuriousness of the creamy burrata cheese. The crisp yet flaky crust makes the perfect shell for this garden tart.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Course Appetizer, lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Canadian
Servings 6

Equipment

  • 1 12" Spring Form Pan Or other baking tray
  • 1 mixing bowl
  • 1 measuring cup
  • 1 Fork
  • 1 Teaspoon
  • Rolling Pin
  • Pastry Knife

Ingredients
  

Tart Pastry

  • Cup Cold Butter
  • Cup Flour
  • ¾ Tsp Salt
  • Cup Cold Water

Tart Toppings

  • Jarred Basil Pesto
  • 6 Cocktail tomatoes washed and sliced thinly or 3 large field tomatoes
  • 1 500ml Burrata Cheese
  • Fresh Basil Leaves

Instructions
 

Making the Tart Pastry

  • Measure flour and salt into large mixing bowl.
    3¾ Cup Flour, ¾ Tsp Salt
  • Add in the cold butter using a pastry knife to blend.
    1½ Cup Cold Butter
  • Blend butter into flour mixture with pastry knife until it resembles coarse peas.
  • Add in the cold water a little at a time. Using your hands form the pastry dough into a soft ball.
    ⅔ Cup Cold Water
  • If your dough feels sticky after adding water you can add a bit more flour.
  • Wrap the ball of pastry dough in cling wrap and place in fridge for one hour.

Bake the Tart Shell

  • Roll the chilled pastry dough out to 1/8" thickness on lightly floured work surface.
  • Work the dough into a circular form. Place dough in spring form pan with only enough dough lip to go up the side a half inch deep.
  • Alternatively make a galette shape out of the dough for your tart base.
  • Dock the bottom of the pastry before baking for ten minutes in 350℉ preheated oven.
  • Discard excess pastry scrapes.

Assembling the Tart

  • Remove the pastry from the oven and spread a few teaspoons of basil pesto on the tart shell.
  • Arrange sliced tomato so they just overlap slightly.
  • Add spoonfuls of the burrata cheese to the top of the tomato.
  • Return to oven to continue baking for 20-30 minutes more or until crust is golden.
  • Lay fresh basil around the top of the baked tart.
  • Remove from oven and let cool slightly before cutting.
Keyword appetizer, burrata, Pastry, tart, tomato

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