Stuffed with three kinds of cheese and herby pesto, these pesto stuffed tomatoes are easy to whip up in minutes and the perfect use for an abundance of tomatoes!
With the unofficial start of summer behind us and today being the first day of June, I figured it was as good a time as ever to break out our tomato game!
First up are these stuffed beauties. Basically just the juiciest summer tomatoes stuffed with a whole lotta cheese + pesto.
And garlic butter breadcrumbs cause we know NO boundaries here and I’m calling that a good thing.
Something this simple should just not taste this good, y’all. I’m just here for the tomatoes for the next three months.
And obviously the pesto and cheese. That’s just being a reasonably sane person.
These Pesto Stuffed Tomatoes feature…
- Soft, juicy heirloom tomatoes
- A creamy three-cheese filling featuring mozzarella, Parmesan, and cream cheese
- Herby, flavorful basil pesto
- Crispy, buttery garlic breadcrumbs
Making the Pesto Stuffed Tomatoes
(scroll to the bottom of the post for the full recipe!)
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Cream cheese
- Pesto (homemade or storebought both work great!)
Choosing Your Tomatoes
We’ve found that heirloom tomatoes work best for this particular recipe because of their firm texture and less juicy interior. The variety of colors also makes them so pretty!
However, if you can’t find heirlooms you can certainly use regular tomatoes on the vine for this recipe!
Try to pick out larger tomatoes if you can – it will make cutting, coring, and stuffing them easier.
Tomatoes I don’t recommend used for this recipe are beefsteak, cherry/grape tomatoes, and romas – romas and cherry/grape tomatoes are too small for stuffing and beefsteaks are extremely juicy.
Tips for Perfect Stuffed Tomatoes
- Cut tomatoes in half horizontally – a big reason why you need larger tomatoes is so you can cut them in half horizontally. Use a sharp knife to carefully cut each tomato.
- Core out tomato interior – use a spoon or a small paring knife to scoop out seeds and interior tomato flesh, being careful not to puncture the bottom of tomatoes.
- Pat tomatoes dry with paper towels – use paper towels to gently blot out extra liquid in cored tomatoes.
- Bake tomatoes at a high temp – once the tomatoes are stuffed with the cheese filling, they will only need to bake for around 12-15 minutes at 400F until the tomatoes are tender when pierced with a fork.
- Broil tomatoes – a quick 1-2 minute broil helps brown the cheese a little bit.
- Top tomatoes with pan-toasted breadcrumbs – last step is topping the tomatoes with the toasted breadcrumbs – we save this step for last so the breadcrumbs stay crispy!
- Prepare tomatoes through step 3 and arrange tomatoes in pan. Cover pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 1 day.
- When ready to bake, remove tomatoes from fridge and bake per recipe instructions. Top with breadcrumbs and serve.
When and how should you serve these? They literally have no specific time or place. We’ve had them as a light lunch before, a side dish for cookouts, a 9pm snack, you name it.
These tomatoes are just EXPLODING with gooey, rich cheese and yet, they still have a light herbiness to them from the fresh pesto. And the crispy breadcrumbs on top? Pure insanity.
Add an extra herby kick by drizzling tomatoes with any extra pesto you have! And a few Parmesan shards too? Do it.
More tomato recipes to try next!
- Bursting Tomato Macaroni and Cheese
- Creamy Basil Roasted Tomato Soup
- Heirloom Tomato Avocado Israeli Couscous Salad
Three Cheese Pesto Stuffed Tomatoes
- 3 large heirloom tomatoes (or regular)
- 6 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup shredded low-moisture mozzarella cheese
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
- 1/4 cup jarred pesto
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Additional pesto and grated Parmesan for topping, optional
- Preheat oven to 400F. Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish. Set aside.
- Cut tomatoes in half horizontally. Use a spoon to carefully scoop out interior flesh and seeds, being careful to not puncture bottom of tomato halves. Discard flesh and seeds or save for another use. Pat tomatoes dry with paper towels and arrange tomato halves in prepared pan.
- In a medium bowl, combine all three cheeses, basil, and pesto. Season filling with salt and pepper to taste. Divide filling between tomatoes.
- Bake tomatoes at 400F 12-15 minutes until tomatoes are softened. Broil under high 1-2 minutes until cheese is browned. Remove from oven.
- In a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add breadcrumbs and garlic and saute 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally until breadcrumbs are toasted.
- Top hot stuffed tomatoes with breadcrumbs and drizzle with additional pesto and Parmesan if desired. Serve tomatoes immediately while warm. Enjoy!