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5-minute Spanish tomato salad

Quick and easy Summer salad recipe

Written By: Byron | July 21, 2023
A plate of tomato salad sits beside some pistachio nuts and a glass of red wine.

This no-fuss 5-minute Spanish Tomato Salad is the perfect summer salad recipe when you’re craving flavors of the Mediterranean. Ripe juicy tomatoes are drizzled with plenty of good quality extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with salt, ground fennel seeds, and some freshly cracked black pepper. The raw garlic adds a spicy punch and can be included or omitted to suit your taste. 

This quick and easy tomato salad recipe uses just 6 easy-to-find ingredients and can be whipped up in under 5 minutes. This vegan-friendly recipe makes 4 servings as a side or tapas. The ingredients can be easily scaled up or down to suit. 

Side Dishes & Appetizers | Tomato Recipe | Summer Recipe | Summer Salad Recipe | Easy Recipe | Healthy | Mediterranean Recipe | Made in under 5 minutes | No-Cook Recipe

Serving:

Side for 4

Ready in:

~5 minutes

Skill level:

Easy

Serve with:

Your favorite main

Vinne tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, and salt and pepper sit on a counter top.

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How to make a 5-minute Spanish tomato salad

(serves 4 as a side salad)

Ingredients

  • 3 ripe on-vine tomatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil 
  • ½ teaspoon of ground fennel seeds
  • Pink Himalayan Salt (to taste)
  • Cracked black pepper (to taste) 

Equipment needed

  • 1 large plate or serving platter
  • 1 sharp knife and chopping board

Method

  • Chop tomatoes into wedges (quarters or eighths work well) and add to a plate. 
  • Peel and slice 4 cloves of garlic. Loosely cut into chunks and add to the plate. 
  • Drizzle with good quality extra virgin olive oil.
  • Sprinkle with some ground fennel seeds and season to taste with salt and cracked black pepper.

 Watch step-by-step recipe video

If you’re looking for this recipe’s video and many other great recipe ideas, why not check out our Spanish Radish YouTube Channel? We’ve got everything from quick and easy tapas recipes, delicious main meals, and incredible Spanish dessert options too.

Simple, no-fuss Spanish tomato salad recipe

Tomato salad is often served as a refreshing tapas in many parts of Spain (and as a side dish in other Mediterranean countries). 

The recipe is a winner for so many reasons, but mainly it’s due to the pairing of good quality ingredients and no-fuss prep work. This recipe is favored in tapas bars as it can be made in mere minutes and is full of fresh flavors that liven the palette for a larger meal. 

Spanish tomato salads

There’s no shortage of tomato salad recipes in Spanish cuisine, but this recipe is our favorite because it’s so simple to make. If you’re looking to add something extra to your tomato salad recipe, check out these other fantastic tomato salad recipes, which can also be main courses:

Best tomatoes to use for tomato salad

Whether you’re looking to add some color or flavor, tomatoes are an excellent addition to any salad. So much so, they stand up on their own as so many Mediterranean tomato salad recipes prove. 

With so few ingredients to work with, choosing the right tomato is important. 

Roma tomatoes

Use large ripe on-vine Roma tomatoes for best results. Roma tomatoes are firm and sweet and have a low moisture content, making them perfect for salads. Roma tomatoes are used extensively around the Mediterranean and pair well with other ingredients such as olive oil, feta cheese, and basil. 

When choosing Roma tomatoes, they should be firm when lightly squeezed and bright red in color. If they are soft or the skin indents when squeezed, they are over-ripe and will become too mushy to use in a salad.

Cooking tip: Refrigerate your tomatoes before preparing them to ensure they slice up easily. 

Brandywine tomato

Perhaps the most celebrated tomato, Brandywine tomatoes are known for their balance between sweetness and acidity. They’re firm-fleshed tomatoes so ideal for use in salads. Brandywine tomatoes are slightly slower in maturing compared to other tomato varieties and will usually be available from mid-summer until around mid-to-late fall. 

Heirloom tomatoes

If you’re looking for some vibrant and full-flavored alternatives, Heirloom tomatoes are a great option. Heirlooms are sweet and juicy and only have a slight bitterness, making them ideal for tomato salad recipes. They can be found in a wide spectrum of colors from pale green, bright yellow, and vibrant red, all the way up to deep and dark purple hues. 

Cherry tomatoes

Small, juicy, and packed full of flavor, cherry tomatoes are excellent options for salads. They are usually round and bite-sized so no chopping is required, and cherry tomatoes can be found in a wide range of colors. Grape tomatoes are similar and have a more unusual shape. Both cherry tomatoes and grape tomatoes are sweet, juicy, and only slightly bitter.

Ingredients for a Mediterranean tomato salad sit on a granite countertop

Ingredient substitutions

With just 6 ingredients used to make this tomato salad recipe, there are really only a few options for omissions or substitutions.

The crucial ingredients could be paired down to tomatoes, olive oil, and salt, although the ground fennel seeds, garlic, and freshly cracked black pepper really add layers of flavor! 

  • Large pieces of raw garlic are a fantastic surprise and add a delicious spiciness to this tomato salad. If you’re not into garlic (or plan on making this recipe for date night), feel free to omit the garlic and you’ll still have a fantastic, full-flavored, and fresh tomato salad in under 5 minutes! 
  • Tuna and tomato salad is a popular salad served in Spain, especially in coastal regions of Spain around the Mediterranean Sea. 
  • Red onion is also a good shout when you’re looking to spice up a tomato salad. Slice the red onion fine and sprinkle over the top. If you want the color but less of the flavor, douse your sliced red onion in some iced water for 15 minutes before serving. 
  • Small slices or shavings of Manchego cheese work well and add lots of rich creamy flavors.
  • Capers and anchovies also work great in tomato salads and add plenty of saltiness (so seasoning with salt is usually not required). 

FAQs

Is this tomato salad recipe suitable for vegans? 

Yes, it sure is! This tomato salad is 100% vegan-friendly. 

What are the best tomatoes to use for this tomato salad recipe?

Use large ripe on-vine Roma tomatoes. They are bright in color, sweet, not too juicy, and perfect for tomato salads. 

How to cut tomatoes for salads

Starting with the knife over the stem of the tomato, cut them in half, then quarters to create perfect bite-sized wedges. If you are using larger tomatoes, cut them into 1/8ths. 

Is this tomato salad recipe healthy?

Yes! With just 75 calories per (side) serving, this tomato salad recipe uses fresh and healthy ingredients like the uber-nutritious extra virgin olive oil

Nutrition facts

Servings: 4 (side servings)

Amount per serving

 

Calories

75

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 7.1g

9%

Saturated Fat 1g

5%

Cholesterol 0mg

0%

Sodium 60mg

3%

Total Carbohydrate 3.1g

1%

Dietary Fiber 0.2g

1%

Total Sugars 2g

 

Protein 0.2g

 

Vitamin D 0mcg

0%

Calcium 9mg

1%

Iron 0mg

1%

Potassium 17mg

0%

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

A plate of Spanish potato salad.
A plate of Spanish tomato salad garnished with garlic and olive oil.

5-minute Spanish tomato salad (Quick and easy summer salad)

Byron
This no-fuss 5-minute Spanish Tomato Salad is the perfect summer salad recipe when you’re craving flavors of the Mediterranean. Ripe juicy tomatoes are drizzled with plenty of good quality extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with salt, ground fennel seeds, and some freshly cracked black pepper. The raw garlic adds a spicy punch and can be included or omitted to suit your taste.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine Authentic Spanish recipe, Mediterranean, Spain
Servings 4 side dish
Calories 75 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 large plate or serving platter
  • 1 sharp knife and chopping board

Ingredients

  • 3 ripe on-vine tomatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ teaspoon of ground fennel seeds
  • Pink Himalayan Salt to taste
  • Cracked black pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Chop tomatoes into wedges (quarters or eighths work well) and add to a plate.
    3 ripe on-vine tomatoes
    A tomato chopped in half.
  • Peel and slice 4 cloves of garlic. Loosely cut into chunks and add to the plate.
    2 cloves of garlic
    Sliced garlic.
  • Drizzle with good quality extra virgin olive oil.
    2 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    A plate of tomato slad is drizzled with olive oil.
  • Sprinkle with some ground fennel seeds and season to taste with salt and cracked black pepper.
    ½ teaspoon of ground fennel seeds, Pink Himalayan Salt, Cracked black pepper
    A plate of Spanish potato salad.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 100gCalories: 75kcalCarbohydrates: 3.1gProtein: 0.2gFat: 7.1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 60mgPotassium: 17mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 2gCalcium: 9mg
Keyword 5-minute recipe, authentic Spanish cuisine, basil and garlic, cherry tomatoes, Ensalada rusa, Mediterranean salad, Spanish tomato salad, Summer salad, Tomato salad