This simple recipe turns a classic caprese salad into a refreshing, satisfying caprese sandwich, stuffed with slices of juicy red tomato, creamy fresh mozzarella, and a drizzle of sweet and tangy balsamic glaze. Enjoyed as-is or lightly toasted, you won’t believe just how much flavor comes from a handful of fresh ingredients.
🥪 What Make This Recipe So Good
- This sandwich recipe is super simple and super easy. Flavor-wise, though, it’s over-the-top! It’s got everything we all love about a classic caprese salad. Juicy tomato, creamy mozzarella, fresh basil, tangy balsamic. There’s also a rich pesto spread and earthy olive oil. Oh, and the general heavenliness that is a baguette. This sandwich may just ruin caprese salads for you… sorry about that.
- This sandwich is a great option for anyone who meal preps! You can wrap a sandwich in plastic wrap or foil and refrigerate it in an airtight container. A baggie works, too! Now you’ve got an easy grab-and-go option. If you want it toasted, you can totally do that right before eating. I mean, if you have access to a broiler, a panini press, a grill pan, or an air fryer, that is.
- My caprese sandwich is naturally vegetarian, but you can easily add meat if you want! Shaved or sliced grilled chicken would work beautifully. You can also keep the sandwich as-is and serve it with a light but satisfying side, like a small antipasto salad or a helping of Mediterranean chickpea salad.
👩🏼🍳 Chef’s Tips
- Whether it’s a caprese salad or a caprese sandwich, the quality of your ingredients really matters. That’s true for any recipe that only uses a few ingredients, actually. If you use a low-quality ingredient in a dish with only 4 ingredients, you’ll notice it more than in a dish with 20 ingredients.
- For the best, most flavorful tomatoes, don’t refrigerate them! Just keep them at room temperature. They’ll be fine, I promise.
- If you slice into your tomato and find that it’s pretty watery, or you feel like it won’t have much flavor, you can still salvage it. Lay the tomato slices on a wire rack over a baking pan (it makes for easier clean-up!). Sprinkle salt over the top of each slice. Let them rest 10 minutes or so, then gently pat away any drawn-out water with paper towels. Flip the slices over and repeat. You can quickly rinse off any excess salt if you want, then make your caprese sandwich. The tomato slices should now taste much more tomato-y!
- For the mozzarella, don’t look for a brick or a block or even slices of part-skim. You want the fresh stuff. The kind that’s soft and packed in liquid and typically found in the specialty or deli section. It’s entirely optional, but if you can find it, I recommend using mozzarella di bufala. It’s mozzarella made with water buffalo milk, and it’s super creamy and rich.
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For the Caprese Sandwich
- 1 large red tomato approximately 10–12 ounces
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella see Notes
- 1 12-inch baguette
- 2 tablespoons full-fat mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon pesto
- 1 tablespoon high-quality olive oil
- salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze plus more as desired
- 6 leaves fresh basil
Serving Suggestions (All Optional)
- high-quality olive oil
- Cutting board
- Sharp chef's knife
- large bread knife
- Small mixing bowl
- mixing spoon or whisk
- Broiler optional
- Baking sheet optional
- Slice 1 large red tomato into ½-inch-thick rounds. Set aside.
- Slice 8 ounces fresh mozzarella into ½-inch-thick rounds. Set aside.
- Slice 1 12-inch baguette in half length-wise. Place both halves of baguette on flat surface, cut-side up.
- Optional: If toasting sandwich, preheat broiler on High, with oven rack positioned approximately 8 to 12 inches below heating element.
- Add 2 tablespoons full-fat mayonnaise and 1 tablespoon pesto to small mixing bowl. Stir or whisk ingredients together until fully combined. Spread pesto mixture evenly onto cut-side of bottom baguette half.
- Spoon 1 tablespoon high-quality olive oil evenly over cut-side of top baguette half. Be careful not to concentrate oil in one spot or bread can become soggy.
- Place slices of tomato on bottom baguette half in one layer, with each slice slightly overlapping.
- Place slices of mozzarella on top of tomato slices in one layer. Sprinkle salt and freshly cracked black pepper over mozzarella to taste.
- Optional: Place sandwich halves cut-side up on baking sheet and place baking sheet under broiler. Broil sandwich 2 to 3 minutes or until bread is lightly toasted and mozzarella is melted slightly. Carefully remove baking sheet from beneath broiler.
- Drizzle 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze over entire layer of mozzarella, then top mozzarella with 6 leaves fresh basil, placed evenly across sandwich.
- Cover mozzarella and tomatoes with top half of baguette, placed cut-side down. Slice sandwich in half, creating two 6-inch sandwiches, and serve with dipping bowl of high-quality olive oil if desired.
- Tomato: For the best flavor, keep your tomatoes at room temperature – don’t refrigerate them! When you slice the tomato, if you find it’s really watery, place the slices on a wire rack over a baking pan. Sprinkle salt on each tomato slice, let them rest 10 minutes or so, then lightly pat away drawn-out moisture with paper towels. Flip the tomato slices over and repeat. You can lightly rinse off any leftover salt if you want, then begin your sandwich.
- Fresh Mozzarella: Use one 8-ounce ball of fresh mozzarella, sliced into ½-inch-thick rounds OR use half a 16-ounce package of pre-sliced fresh mozzarella. Entirely optional, but if you can find it, I recommend using mozzarella di bufala (mozzarella made with water buffalo milk)!
- Balsamic Glaze: Store-bought balsamic glaze is totally fine! You can also make a thinner version with my balsamic vinaigrette recipe.
- Broiler: You can use a panini press or an indoor grill if you’d rather.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.