Tomato and Cucumber Salad with Basil Vinaigrette
[Originally published on 8/22/16 and edited on 9/4/17]
Have you eaten a tomato and cucumber salad this summer? If your answer is, “No” – then what are you waiting for?! It is the end of the summer season and tomatoes and cucumbers are spilling out of gardens across the country. It’s time to harvest as much as possible (before the critters/wildlife beat you to it) and enjoy the deliciousness that these veggies provide.
My cherry tomato plants are loaded with so much bounty that I find myself popping them into my mouth like candy. When the tomatoes bypass my mouth and actually make it into the kitchen, I combine them with cucumbers and create a fast and easy summer salad.
This simple and delicious tomato and cucumber salad takes care of the tomato overflow in the garden and can be eaten by itself or paired with several main courses. To make this salad extra tasty (and addictive), I toss the tomatoes and cucumbers with basil and a homemade basil vinaigrette dressing.
If time is a factor, skip the basil vinaigrette and whip up a more simple dressing. Mix a few teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice with olive oil (and/or balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, or raw coconut aminos), salt, pepper, and herbs (like thyme and/or oregano) and add to the tomatoes, cucumbers and basil. Yum!
Another option is to use a ready-made dressing like Primal Kitchen’s Greek, Avocado Oil-Based Dressing and Marinade. It is Paleo, Whole30 approved and free of added sugars.
When I want more variety, I add other veggies to this salad. Chopped avocado and/or celery are two vegetables that pair well with this dish.
Tomato and cucumber salad with basil vinaigrette recipe
Grab locally sourced ingredients, excite your tastebuds, fill your belly, and impress your friends with this recipe. My tomato and cucumber salad with basil vinaigrette is healthy, hearty, and flat out delicious. Whether you prepare the recipe for yourself or for a crowd, it is a guaranteed pleaser and a welcome treat to enjoy while our summer months come to a close.
- 2-3 cups organic cherry and/or plum tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1-2 organic cucumbers, cut in half lengthwise and chopped into bite size pieces
- 2-3 teaspoons fresh basil, chiffonaded
- 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped (optional)
- 1 teaspoon fresh mint, chiffonaded (optional)
- ¼ cup thinly sliced shallots, onions or chives (optional)
- 1 container fresh organic bocconcini mozzarella or ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, for taste
- Prepare the fresh basil vinaigrette and set aside.
- Wash tomatoes, cucumbers, fresh herbs and pat dry.
- Slice tomatoes.
- Peel and chop cucumbers.
- Chiffonade or tear basil and any other herbs you plan on using.
- Place tomatoes, cucumbers and fresh herbs into a small bowl.
- Add any additional ingredients (onions, cheese, etc.) to bowl with tomatoes and cucumbers.
- Gently toss ingredients together.
- Dress with about 1-2 tablespoons of fresh basil vinaigrette or dressing of your choice.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Chopped avocado and/or celery can be added to this recipe.
- Where do you get fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and basil? Did you plant a garden this year or do you visit a local market or farm?
- If you venture past your yard for bounty, where do you shop?
- This summer has been very dry for much of the nation. If you have a garden, did your veggies suffer as a result of drought?
- What do you think of this recipe?
- What is your favorite summer salad?
When she is not helping others to slay fat, build muscle, and live amazing lives, Jennifer can be found exploring the outdoors with her dogs, cooking, traveling and playing/coaching lacrosse. She also enjoys reading and writing about food culture, history and the science of human movement.