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5-Ingredient Caprese Salad

Updated: Jan 12, 2022

'Tis the season for Caprese salad everything! I am so in love with everything tomato basil right now, and the addition of fresh mozzarella puts me over the edge (in a good way). If you're in need of a simple yet stunning, warm weather salad recipe, you're in the right place. This 5-Ingredient Caprese Salad comes together in just 10 minutes and brightens up any snack, meal, or party spread.

What is Caprese Salad?

Traditional insalata Caprese, aka Caprese salad, is an Italian dish that typically consists of 4 main ingredients:

  • perfectly ripe tomatoes

  • fresh mozzarella di bufala (mozzarella made from buffalo milk)

  • basil torn apart by hand

  • olive oil (optional)

According to my research, insalata Caprese is thought to have made it's debut back in the 1920's, but took several decades to rise to popularity and eventually become the classic Italian dish that we all know and love.

My 5-Ingredient Caprese Salad recipe contains most of the classic insalata Caprese ingredients - I subbed in fresh cow's milk mozzarella for the traditional mozzarella di bufala - with the addition of balsamic vinegar. The simple combination of fresh basil, juicy cherry tomatoes, zesty balsamic vinegar, and creamy mozzarella pearls is 1) STUNNING to look at and 2) so so flavorful and bright.

Serving Suggestions

This fresh and flavorful 5-Ingredient Caprese Salad is a wonderful addition to any spring or summer spread. For maximum flavor serve this dish at room temperature, about 15-30 minutes after it's prepared. This allows the flavors to blend together really nicely. Then dig in with a spoon or serve...

  • as a dip with pita chips

  • tossed with pasta, warm or cold

  • in a whole wheat pita with hummus or chickpeas

  • on a green salad with grilled chicken

  • in a cold, grain salad

You can get really creative with this recipe! Serve it as an appetizer, have it as a snack, or make it the main focus of the meal. I personally like to make a big batch early in the week then enjoy it as a snack with chips a couple of days, then with pasta or Israeli couscous for a balanced meal.

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What's in This Recipe?

  • Tomatoes – contains the antioxidant lycopene

  • Mozzarella cheese – contains calcium and protein; provides flavor

  • Basilcontains hypolipidemic and antioxidant substances

  • Balsamic vinegar – contains acid which enhances flavor

  • Olive oil – contains heart healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs)

  • Seasonings – salt and pepper

Notes: This recipe is naturally gluten free and vegetarian.

5-Ingredient Caprese Salad

Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 0 minutes Total time: 10 minutes Servings: 2 servings


  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped in half

  • 1/2 cup mozarella pearls

  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped or torn apart by hand (preferred method)

  • 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Add the above ingredients to a medium sized mixing bowl. Toss to combine.

  2. Serve at room temperature.

  3. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.


Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. When you make this recipe, tag me at @hope.for.balance and use the hashtag #hopeforbalance for a chance to be featured in my Facebook or IG stories. I LOVE seeing your creations!

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