Tomato bruschetta with balsamic glaze is an easy appetizer that you can whip up on short notice. Crunchy, toasted slices of garlicky Italian bread are topped with the perfect blend of tomatoes, onions, garlic, and basil, all immersed in olive oil to bring out their intense flavours, and drizzled with a reduced balsamic glaze.
I am not going to lie, this is one of my go-to "show-off" dishes. Why? Well, it looks and tastes on par with restaurant bruschetta, if not better. You will be shocked at how easy it is to make. It basically comes down to chopping up some vegetables and toasting some bread. Yup, that easy.
You can even prepare the toppings in advance and assemble the bruschetta just before serving. It's a total crowd pleaser so be prepared to make extra.
What is Bruschetta?
Bruschetta are an appetizer made of thick slices of Italian bread or sourdough-type bread that is drizzled with olive oil and rubbed with garlic, then toasted and topped with tomatoes and herbs. They are similar to crostini which is made with small, thin slices of toasted French baguettes.
Ingredients in Tomato Bruschetta
To make this easy tomato bruschetta with balsamic glaze, you will need the following ingredients:
- Italian bread (or French baguette) - sliced into ½ inch slices and brushed with olive oil and garlic powder.
- red onion
- fresh basil
- olive oil - I recommend using a high quality olive oil.
- salt and pepper
- balsamic vinegar - to make your own balsamic reduction glaze, or you can substitute this with ¼ cup of store-bought balsamic reduction.
How to Make the Best Tomato Bruschetta with Balsamic Glaze
- Make the tomato topping: In a medium mixing bowl, add tomatoes, red onion, garlic, basil, olive oil and salt and pepper. Toss to combine and store in the refrigerator for one hour (you don't have to wait this long, but letting the mixture sit in the refrigerator will help bring out the flavours).
- Make the balsamic glaze: In a small cooking pot or shallow saucepan, bring the balsamic vinegar to a boil over medium heat. Continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes until the sauce is reduced by half. Pour the glaze into a small bowl and set aside to cool. The glaze will continue to thicken when removed from heat.
- Toast the bread: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small mixing bowl, combine olive oil and garlic powder. Brush the top side of each of the baguette slices with the olive oil mixture. Place the slices onto a large half sheet baking tray and toast for 10 minutes, until light golden brown.
- Assemble the bruschetta: Top each toasted slice with a spoonful of the tomato mixture. Drizzle the balsamic glaze on top and serve.
How to Make Balsamic Glaze
This recipe also calls for balsamic glaze. It is so easy to make at home, or you can use store-bought. To make it at home, all you need is one ingredient: balsamic vinegar. Simply heat it on the stove to reduce the sauce by half (allow the liquid to evaporate). The glaze will be glossy and thick enough to coat the back of the spoon (similar to liquid honey). Note that the glaze will continue to thicken quite a lot as it cools so you need to remove it from the heat and transfer to a bowl immediately once it's reduced by half.
Make Ahead Instructions
You can make parts of this tomato bruschetta with balsamic glaze ahead of time.
- Tomato topping: Make the tomato topping up to one day in advance and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, gentle stir and then add it on top of the toasted bread.
- Balsamic glaze: You can make this up to one month ahead. Store it in a clean glass jar or airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to one month.
- Bread: I recommend toasting the bread fresh so that it has the best crunch. You could toast it a day ahead and store in an airtight container, but it will loose it's crunch and could even be a little hard.
More Appetizer Recipes
- Baked Spinach Dip
- Pico de Gallo Chunky Salsa
- Homemade Calzones
- Whipped Ricotta Dip
- Fried Mac and Cheese Balls
- Baked Mozzarella Sticks
Did you make this recipe? I would greatly appreciate a comment and rating below, letting me know what you thought of the recipe. You can also snap a picture and tag me on Instagram @aheadofthyme or share it on the Pinterest pin so that I can follow along.