Heirloom Caprese w/ Mint Pesto

heirloom caprese with mint pesto / @loveandlemons heirloom caprese with mint pesto / @loveandlemons

And the season of simple recipes continues…

“What are you going to do with these?” asked the farm-stand man as I was fixating on these 3 gorgeous golden tomatoes. This question always flusters me… I should have an answer, but truthfully, I buy things on a whim and usually decide what to make later. And in this case, these tomatoes were so spectacular that knew I wasn’t going to “do” much.

heirloom caprese with mint pesto / @loveandlemons

“Um… I’m probably just going to slice and eat them…” He looked at me with a huge grin as if I had just given the right answer. I could tell he was pleased that his tomatoes would be heading to a good home. Then he told me they would be perfect tomorrow, but only tomorrow.

This is what I love about summer.

heirloom caprese with mint pesto / @loveandlemons

Here’s the plate of beautiful sliced tomatoes that we enjoyed last Sunday night… elevated (just slightly) with slices of fresh mozzarella and a bright mint pesto.

A little pesto goes a long way – save the extra for simple meals throughout the week. If you make this tag #loveandlemons or @loveandlemons on Instagram!

heirloom caprese w/ mint pesto

Serves: serves 2-3 as an appetizer
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes
  • 1 ball of fresh mozzarella
  • salt & pepper
  • optional - red pepper flakes & sprouts for garnish
mint pesto: (this makes extra)
  • a huge handful of mint
  • a few basil leaves
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • juice & zest of 1 small lemon
  • ¼ - ⅓ cup olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  1. In a small food processor, blend together the mint, basil, garlic, pine nuts, lemon, salt and pepper. Drizzle in the olive oil until and blend until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  2. Slice tomatoes and cheese and arrange on a plate. Season with salt and pepper, then drizzle pesto over the top.
  3. Store extra pesto in the fridge.
vegan option: Skip the cheese and just drizzle tomatoes with pesto. Or try sliced avocado in place of the cheese.

Plate: Anthropologie


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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

    • jeanine

      thanks! I was worried it would look plain w/ red, but sometimes less is more!

  1. Tamara from saltofthehearth.com

    Beautiful photography as usual! Looks delicious 🙂

  2. Eileen from hampiesandwiches.blogspot.com

    Yes! Just slicing and eating tomatoes is one of my favorite summer activities. 🙂 I love the idea of a mint pesto with this classic caprese!

  3. Jen from oh-honeypie.com

    Dude! I was thinking of doing a caprese salad tonight and I wanted to jazz it up while keeping it simple and fresh, mint pesto is genius. Making this 😀

    • jeanine

      ha, great minds… 🙂

  4. Aww that man at the farmers market sounds so nice! I love when they tell you exactly what you need to know! I’m all about simple this summer as well. Definitely trying this!

  5. SO gorgeous! LOVE the yellow maters 🙂 Mint + basil is one of my very favorite combinations this Summer. This is lovely—pinned!

  6. Anna from vintageveggie.blogspot.com

    All I have to say is: GENIUS. And the yellow is so surprising and beautiful.

  7. I just received a bunch of fresh mint and basil in my CSA box. I should try making this pesto!

  8. meg from liquidsunshineak.com

    Amaze. Love it!
    Just need to get my hands on some good tomatoes (a challenge here in Alaska)!

  9. This is hands down the most gorgeous caprese. If I had to sum summer up in one dish, it’s this one! yum!

  10. I love caprese salad and you’re right – it’s best to not do much to them, especially when you have gorgeous tomatoes like these involved. Beautiful photos, per usual.

  11. Jenn

    Everything you make is just amazingly, luxuriously gorgeous. I don’t know what I want to do more – eat it or just keep staring at it!

  12. I’ve never tried a mint pesto before, I bet it is wonderful on a caprese. Your photos are just stunning, great job!

  13. Caitlin from teaspoonsf.com

    the mint pesto sounds like a wonderful addition! gotta love the farmer’s market 🙂 they are always so nice and the beautiful produce you can get always makes me happy.

  14. I just picked up some lovely heirloom tomatoes yesterday, and they would be fantastic in this recipe! Thanks for sharing!

  15. Courtney d

    I made this for dinner last night for my meat-and-potatoes husband. It was so delicious! He especially loved the pesto and said he’d have it again some time. Thanks!

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  18. Awesome recipe. I love your combo of pesto w. the basic caprese salad. I will certainly try this. Really yummy !

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.