These roasted cherry tomatoes are a perfect way to preserve a little bit of summer’s bounty before it’s all gone. A splash of olive oil, a drizzle of maple syrup, and a pinch of sea salt is all you need to bring out the sweetness of these little beauties.
I make these roasted cherry tomatoes constantly when cherry tomatoes are in season. The tiny globes collapse and caramelize, while their flavor concentrates tenfold. I keep them in glass canning jars in the refrigerator, to add little explosions of flavor to any dish that needs them.
When selecting cherry tomatoes, look for baskets of various colored tomatoes—red, orange, and yellow. I love the combination of colors, but using all same color is just fine, too.–Heidi Swanson
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LC Sweet, Sweet Summer Note
If you need any reassurance as to just how swell these roasted cherry tomatoes capture the sweetness of summer, look no further than the two dozen or so comments from our recipe testers below. Enough said.
Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes whether red, orange, yellow or a combination, stemmed
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon cane sugar or maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt plus more to taste
- To make the roasted cherry tomatoes, preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C). Adjust the oven rack to the top third of the oven.
- Slice the tomatoes in half and place them on a rimmed baking sheet.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, sugar or maple syrup, and a scant 1/2 teaspoon salt. Pour the mixture over the tomatoes and gently toss until well coated. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer, cut-side up, and roast, without stirring, until the tomatoes shrink a bit and start to caramelize around the edges, 45 to 60 minutes.
- Nibble the roasted cherry tomatoes straight off the baking sheet. Or, if you aren’t using them immediately, let them cool and then scrape them into a clean glass jar along with any olive oil that was left in the baking dish or sheet. Sometimes I top off the jar with an added splash of olive oil. The tomatoes will keep for about 1 week in the refrigerator.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
I’ve made roasted cherry tomatoes for years, often on a weekly basis. I eat them as a side dish to a nice steak or chicken breast, or just over rice with a poached egg and some spinach. This is a staple of my diet. Heidi’s approach isn’t super revolutionary, but I really did like the addition of the maple syrup. It pumped up the volume on the sweetness that comes out when you roast tomatoes. I will definitely be using this technique again.
This roasted cherry tomatoes recipe was very straightforward recipe and the execution was simple. The flavor, even from hothouse tomatoes, was filled with the sweetness of summer-ripened tomatoes.
I love sun-dried tomatoes, but sometimes I don’t love the leathery texture. This roasted cherry tomatoes recipe results in a softer tomato, but with the same condensed flavor. I liked the option of using maple syrup. While the final dish didn’t have a strong maple flavor, there was a subtle undertone of caramel or darker sugar, which we liked. I baked the tomatoes for 45 minutes, at which point all of the tomatoes had shriveled slightly and relaxed in texture. I did notice that the tomatoes near the outside edges of the baking sheet had a much deeper color than the ones placed in the middle. I suspect that the ones along the outside edge would have been closer to charring and even burning a bit if they stayed in the oven for much longer. The size of the tomatoes may also affect the baking time, as I think smaller tomatoes (mine were a bit closer to grape than cherry) would caramelize more quickly. I served these tomatoes as a warm component in a fava bean salad– the sweet tomatoes balanced the fava beans. I also used some of the tomatoes in an omelet with goat cheese, and really liked that combination as well.
Do make these roasted cherry tomatoes to have on hand because they have a wonderful flavor that it so bright. It’s sweet on the back end, like wow, where did that come in! I’m happy to have this to use as a condiment for paninis and to add excitement to all my future PoBoy’s. Can also be served with a nice mild cheese. I did what the author suggested and added some olive oil to cover. You may be familiar with caponata, this has to be its cousin. Brings back fond memories of my Italian heritage on my mother’s side.
Cherry tomatoes and olive oil are an irresistible combination. That holds true in this recipe. Originally I thought this dish may need something more, like an additional spice or vinegar. However, followed exactly as written, this recipe does not disappoint. I roasted my tomatoes in a stone roasting pan, which left a little bit of the caramel goodness in the pan. I really would have liked every bit of the caramelized tomatoes off the pan, so I think I may try to roast them on parchment paper so I can get it all off next time. I used maple syrup and it worked well. They came out of the oven caramelized and fragrant. The flavor of the tomatoes was deep, rich, and intense. I could eat them as is, or combine them with pasta, or use them in a sandwich or salad. They tasted great hot or cold. The best part is they were so simple – an easy weeknight go-to. . They do look very pretty in a little jar in the fridge.
This roasted cherry tomatoes recipe was great. It was easy to make and was delicious. The tomatoes ended up like dried fruit, but moist and plump. The timing was 50 minutes.
Keep? One week? These little nuggets of rich sweetness lasted about 14 seconds before being completely devoured. They’re easy to make and a breeze to turn out of the oven – even easier if you use a nonstick sheet. The only thing that lasted was our good impression of the flavors and the little bits of tomato-y caramel stuck to our teeth! I put everything into a bowl, including the halved tomatoes, and tossed lightly before arranging them cut-side up on the baking sheet. It seemed so much easier that way. This works great with grape tomatoes, too!
If you were ever questioned on what the essential taste of a tomato is, then these oven roasted cherry tomatoes could be your answer. I have made a Mario Batali version of these tomatoes which I love, but they require four hours of cooking time. This version is much faster and just as good. I’m not entirely convinced that the recipe needs the sugar, but it did add a nice caramelization. I’ve used these in salads and sandwiches and could also see putting them in a blender with some olive oil to use as a spread for crostini. I could also see adding some thyme or rosemary sprigs to the tomatoes as they roast.
This roasted cherry tomatoes recipe isn’t terribly original, but it is delicious. I’ve been making a version of this with larger tomatoes for years, but this version, especially with the maple syrup, was delicious. I served the tomatoes as a crostini with fresh mozzarella and basil. The salt and maple syrup boosted the flavor of the tomatoes and the slow cooking turned them into tasty jewels. I parceled them out over about three days (finished them off for lunch today) and they rewarmed really well. They’d actually make a great vegetarian meal with the green gazpacho.
Hardly any of these roasted cherry tomatoes made it into the bowl. I was going to say that they were like crack, however, since I don’t know what crack is like, I can only say that this must be what crack is like. We ate most of these tomatoes right off of the sheet pan. They were caramelized and sweet and luscious. I am going to make another batch today and see how long they last.
Such intense flavor for so little effort! Fortunately, I started out with reasonably tasty cherry tomatoes, considering that they weren’t fresh off the vine. I have tossed this wonderfully oily mixture, sweet from the roasting and the maple syrup and yet just slightly tart from the tomatoes, with homemade pasta, used it to top scrambled eggs, and mixed it with mozzarella and fresh basil to make a variation of a caprese salad. (The cheese and basil mixture is also a perfect topping for a toasted baguette.) I think this will be great with fresh green beans. Tomorrow, I am going to try this on a grilled cheese sandwich or a breakfast sandwich with a poached egg, ham and English muffin. Sorry, I am not waiting until tomorrow.
What a delightful, easy, and tasty side dish these roasted cherry tomatoes are. They came out sweet and nicely caramelized yet not overbearing. A truthfully perfect addition to a nice grilled steak. What’s even better is that you can easily prep it hours prior to dinner and just put it in the oven for an hour prior to being served.
This roasted cherry tomatoes recipe took all of five minutes to put together. I mixed the olive oil, maple syrup, and salt in a small bowl, added the halved tomatoes, coated them well, and spread them on the baking sheet (instead of pouring the liquid over the tomatoes and tossing them together on the baking sheet). Baking time was the full 60 minutes. The resulting tomatoes had a great balance of sweetness and acidity. They would be great on crostini spread with soft goat cheese, or stirred into pasta, or in a chopped salad, or…well, the possibilities are almost endless. I’ll definitely be making them again and again.
When you’re craving tomatoes in the middle of winter, but all the specimens in the market are sadly lacking, this roasted tomatoes recipe is a terrific way to jazz them up. Initially, I thought that adding the sugar would overly caramelize the tomatoes and cover up their lovely flavor, but this was not the case at all. Instead, the tomato flavor was slightly amped up by this treatment. I served these as a garnish for a spinach quiche, and the bright red color of the tomatoes jazzed up the dish, as did the flavors as well.
I grow many cherry tomatoes every summer and I roast the end-of-season tomatoes just like this (sans sweetener) before freezing them. They’re wonderful for sauces, stews, and soups. With added sweetness from the maple syrup, Swanson’s oven-roasted tomatoes taste fabulous. Think of them as instant mini sun-dried tomatoes. Every bit is packed with flavor. Try one and it will tickle your imagination. I made canapés with creamy goat cheese topped with a spoonful of the caramelized tomatoes—lovely. I also tossed freshly cooked shell pasta and baby shrimp with the juicy tomatoes and all the olive oil. It was delicious warm or chilled (just had the leftover for lunch—no time for “nuking”).
These roasted cherry tomatoes were easy to make and delicious to eat. Our local market only had grape tomatoes this week so I used those. Since the recipe didn’t suggest what to use these for I decided they might be good on pasta and I was right. I ate mine on some angel hair pasta with some grated Parmesan and freshly ground black pepper. This made a great work night meal. Once you toss the tomatoes with the olive oil, sea salt, and, in my case, natural cane sugar, the oven does the work for you. With the grape tomatoes, 45 minutes was the perfect time. These also tasted great straight from the pan and I bet they’d make a great snack.
I was very pleased with how easy the recipe was and how versatile the tomatoes are. Since I couldn’t find cherry tomatoes, I used grape tomatoes instead. I’ve used the tomatoes in a pasta salad, on top of an open-faced egg salad sandwich, and as a salad topping. I’m already planning on making another batch of these oven-roasted tomatoes.
Yum! Wow! This super-simple recipe transforms the tomatoes to a delectable, sweet, melts-in-your-mouth treat, and, although I used the best cherry tomatoes I could find, they were nothing special to begin with. Not only did they sweeten while baking, but they also became richer, and one of my tasters described the result as creamy, like a tomato bisque–yet there’s no dairy involved! They also became juicy, literally dripping with deliciousness! I used raw sugar, and a generous half teaspoon of the sea salt. I baked them for the full hour, as they were not at all caramelized at the 45 minute mark. At the hour mark, they had begun to caramelize as described, and there was a fond-like residue in the pan, that should not be neglected when removing the tomatoes from the pan. As with traditional fond, this added significantly to the flavor of the roasted tomatoes! Apart from eating them right from the oven with a spoon, they’d be great on bread, in scrambled eggs, with pasta or noodles, atop rice, adjacent to cheese on an appetizer tray like a tapa — the possibilities are endless for this easy-to-make treat, and one that could take an ordinary tomato and without much effort transform it into something truly special! We did add a tiny sprinkle of salt when serving.
Loved this one. It seems so simple, but the slow-roast technique imparts great flavor to a simple ingredient. I had enough to make two batches, so I tried both versions. Although I love maple syrup, for me this didn’t work with the tomatoes. The maple flavor just overtook the flavor of the roasted tomatoes. The sugar version left the roasted flavor intact. I used most of the tomatoes in a sauce which I strained to remove skins and seeds. The sauce cooked down into a concentrated sauce that needed no other ingredients other than an additional splash of olive oil.
Great idea for cherry tomatoes! The recipe is very straightforward and doesn’t require a lot of ingredients for the amount of flavor these little tomatoes put out. Forty-five minutes for me was a sufficient amount of time, so I would definitely check it before going the whole hour. For a side dish I ate mine on top of brown basmati rice—nothing simpler than that!
I have roasted tomatoes in the oven before many times and never thought of adding sugar or maple syrup since tomatoes are quite sweet…usually. If you have sweet cherry tomatoes, I think you can easily skip the added sweetness. But I had some out-of-season, grown-far-away cherry tomatoes that were not very sweet and this recipe was a great way to still use the tomatoes but not suffer from the somewhat bland flavor. Since we ate them that day, I didn’t need all of the oil that was in the recipe. I think 1/8 cup would have been plenty. I imagine that if I wanted to save the tomatoes for later, the excess oil would be great for storing them as the recipe suggests. Next time, I think I might put them in the food processor and make it into a spread or dip instead of adding them to pasta.
The maple syrup in the roasted tomatoes recipe made these tomatoes special. They emerged from the oven crispy-chewy around the edges and sweet as candy. I stirred them and their juices into a bowl of white beans, added some slivers of black olives and ribbons of basil, and called it lunch. Next time, turned into a bruschetta topping along with a schmear of goat cheese. Or tossed with whole-wheat spaghetti with a dollop of fresh ricotta. Oh, the possibilities…
When I first tasted these roasted cherry tomatoes shortly after they came out of the oven, I thought they were okay but nothing special. Then I popped another into my mouth. Hmmm. Not bad! Then another. Even better! And another…. I ended up eating all of them so my other tasters never got a chance to taste. What tasty little surprise gems they are. I think they got better as they cooled off some. I would suggest serving them warm but not hot. The small amount of maple syrup was just enough to help them caramelize and gave them just a hint of sweetness. This is a recipe that I will surely be making again.
The simplicity of this roasted cherry tomatoes recipe is what drew me. However, because it is so simple, I found myself tempted to add a few other ingredients to the mix, such as some pepper or a small amount of garlic powder. I’m glad I didn’t tamper with anything! The slightly sweet tomato flavor was absolutely lovely. As tomatoes are not yet in season here, they are rather flavorless. The roasting really concentrated the tomato taste and the maple syrup provided a nice enhancement. I ate them plain but think that they would be delicious on a crusty baguette or in a salad with some couscous. I actually roasted the tomatoes in my toaster oven and had great results.
Originally published July 24, 2011