This Avocado Caprese Salad recipe with arugula is the perfect mix of ripe summer tomato, tender fresh mozzarella, rich balsamic vinegar and fragrant basil. Avocado adds an unexpected but downright delicious creaminess to this classic summer salad.
Avocado Caprese Salad
I'm officially in a tomato bender and this Avocado Caprese Salad is my menu on repeat.
My cherry tomato plants are going crazy and I stopped by the Farmer's Market to get a few "big ugly tomatoes" a.k.a. heirloom tomatoes. I love the funny colored, lumpy heirloom ones that are big enough to have a one slice tomato sandwich. There is nothing like mid and late summer to bring perfect tomatoes to the menu. Ripe summer tomatoes will always be one of my favorite foods and now that the twins love them too, I can't keep enough around.
I can't stop finding ways to use them and caprese salads are at the top of the list. I mean can you beat the combination of fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil?Perfect for summer! Avocado Caprese Salad. Click To Tweet
Why You'll Love this Avocado Caprese Salad...
Caprese has been one of my favorite foods since my trip to Italy many years ago. It's hard to mess with the perfection of the classic Caprese BUT I dare say this combination with Avocado making it an Avocado Caprese Salad is downright dreamy.
The combination of fresh sliced tomato, creamy mozzarella, smooth fresh avocado, fragrant just picked basil and peppery arugula is perfection on a plate. This really is SUMMER on a plate.
Serve this salad as shown for a delicious vegetarian salad OR add chicken, fish or shrimp to make it a well rounded meal.
Is caprese salad unhealthy?
Caprese is actually a really healthy meal or snack! The combination of fresh tomato and basil is full of antioxidants. You can overdue it with the amount of calories in the cheese and avocado, so do be mindful of your portions if you are concerned about that.
- Tomatoes: I used plum tomatoes for these photos, but you can use any type of fresh summer tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes will even work!
- Fresh Mozzarella: You'll need fresh mozzarella found in the specialty cheese department to get the right flavor for this Avocado Caprese Salad. It's softer than a traditional mozzarella block.
- Avocado: Fresh sliced avocado is the perfect unexpected addition to this caprese! They are filled with healthy fats, magnesium, potassium and are an all around superfood making them a lovely addition to this salad.
- Basil Leaves: You'll need fresh basil for this salad. If you don't grow your own, look for it in the produce section of your grocery store next to the salad greens.
- Arugula: To make this dish a well rounded salad I put it on a bed of arugula. The peppery leaves are the perfect addition.
- Lemon: I lightly dress the arugula greens in olive oil and lemon.
- Olive Oil: Make sure to use a good, high end extra virgin olive oil for this recipe. I linked to one of my favorites.
- Balsamic Glaze: I love a nice balsamic glaze to bring out all of the flavors! Make your own balsamic reduction OR just buy this one. It's delicious.
Caprese with Balsamic Reduction?
Caprese isn't traditionally made with a balsamic reduction OR glaze BUT since this is an untraditional recipe anyway, I decided to add it. I LOVE the rich flavor it adds to caprese. You will adore it on this Avocado Caprese Salad.
How to Make a Caprese Salad:
- Toss your arugula in lemon and olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Make a bed of greens on two plates.
- Slice your fresh mozzarella, tomato and avocado.
- Slice your fresh basil leaves and leave some whole for garnish.
- Carefully line up you mozzarella, tomato and avocado on the bed or arugula.
- Drizzle with balsamic glaze and finish with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.
How do I pit an avocado?
If you aren't familiar with cutting fresh avocado, they do have a pit! Take large sharp knife and cut it length-wise around the pit. You should be able to carefully pull it apart. To get out the pit use your knife and very carefully use a firm chop to secure the pit on the knife. Wiggle it back and forth until it comes out. Use a spoon to remove the avocado from the skin.
How do I store Avocado Caprese Salad?
I feel like tomatoes are best right after they are cut and avocado will turn brown if you let it sit SO this salad is best enjoyed when made. However, if you really want to store it, it will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days. Add the lemon, olive oil and balsamic glaze just before serving.
Serve this with:
More Variations on Caprese Salad to Love:
- Strawberry Caprese Salad
- Grilled Peach Caprese Salad
- Blueberry Caprese Salad
- Caprese Pasta Salad
- Caprese Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
- Caprese Crustless Quiche
- Caprese Wheat Berry Salad
Avocado Caprese Salad
- 2 plum tomatoes, sliced
- 2 medium sized fresh mozzarella balls, sliced
- ½ avocado, sliced
- 2 cups fresh arugula
- 6 fresh basil leaves
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoon balsamic glaze
- sea salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
- Toss the arugula in the olive oil and squeeze of fresh lemon. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Top with the fresh mozzarella, avocado and tomato. Drizzle the balsamic glaze.
- Cut the basil in a chiffonade and sprinkle on top.
- Finish with a dash of salt and pepper.
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