My favorite food to eat when it is blistering hot out is salads.Â But, honestly, it doesn’t have to be summer for me to make or order a Caprese salad, I love them and make them all the time! I think Caprese salads are highly underrated and are not only the perfect side salad, but also make a beautiful appetizer that will surely be a huge hit!
There is a restaurant down the street from our house called Tenuta’s Italian Restaurant and 9 times out of 10, Caleb and I will order a Caprese Salad. I just love them so much! The Caprese Salad at Tenuta’s is what inspired me to put together this Caprese salad with a homemade balsamic drizzle!
I’m pretty positive I made the best tasting + prettiest Caprese Salad Platter I’ve ever made!
I used Josie’s Organic Arugula as the base, plenty of Fresh Heirloom, Cherry Tomatoes, Fresh Over-sized Basil Leaves, BelGioioso Mozzarella, Garlic, Marinated Green Olives, topped with a homemade balsamic reduction drizzle, and served with seasoned CrostinisÂ from Fresh Thyme grocery.
I love the idea of serving this salad on a giant platter (mine is from WestÂ Elm) rather than using individual plates, and for this Caprese Salad, it worked brilliantly!
The best part about a Caprese Salad is how deconstructed it is. You can really mix and match the ingredients to whatever looks freshest at the grocery or what you have at home.
Are you drooling yet? No judgment!
Caprese Salad with Homemade Balsamic Reduction Drizzle
Caprese Salad with Balsamic Drizzle
- 2 Cups Balsamic Vinegar
- 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
- 2 Cups Organic Arugula
- 3 Fresh Heirloom Tomatoes
- 1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes
- 1 Cup Fresh Over-sized Basil Leaves Chopped
- 8 oz BelGioioso Mozzarella Pearls
- 1 8 oz Belgioioso Fresh Mozzarella Ball Sliced
- 2 Garlic Cloves Chopped
- 1/2 Cup Marinated Green Olives
- 1/8 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 Package Herb Crostinis
- Heat balsamic vinegar and brown sugar in a small pot or saucepan over medium heat.
- Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to medium-low heat and let simmer for 8-10 minutes, while stirring occasionally, until the vinegar thickens and is reduced.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 15 minutes while you assemble your salad.
- Slice your cherry tomatoes and mince your garlic.
- Scatter arugula on the platter to make a base before layering the tomato slices, fresh mozzarella, olives, and basil. Sprinkle your remaining sliced ingredients to the platter and drizzle with olive oil and the balsamic glaze. Season with salt and pepper to taste. ** I chose to put my marinated olives and minced garlic in a little bowl in the middle of my platter, but you can always toss those in with the rest of your ingredients
- Arrange some crostini slices on the sides of the platter and serve immediately.
- Add bell peppers
- Use black olives instead of green olives
- Sprinkle on some dried cranberries
- Swap fresh peaches for the cherry tomatoes
- Add fresh avocado slices
- Skip the balsamic glaze or skip the olive oil drizzle
- Add sliced red onions
- Put a Burrata cheese ball in the center of the platter
I love my oversized platter from West Elm: Slice & serve. This Marble & Wood Cutting board is a great foundation for cheese plates, charcuterie platters, and assorted hors dâ€™oeuvres. The marble surface keeps food cool for hours and the wood accent is great for cutting and slicing.