Grilled Ciabatta with Marinated Tomatoes

Clearly I didn’t waste any time making the grilled bread & marinated tomatoes I mentioned in my vacation recap post. Also, I clearly forgot the fresh parsley this time around… I miss that pop of green color, but the crisp ciabatta + juicy tomatoes still tasted fantastic!

The vital ingredients here are good crusty ciabatta bread and ripe summer tomatoes.

Organic heirloom tomatoes are still reasonably priced, deeply red-hued, and perfectly sweet… so let’s take advantage of the quickly dwindling tomato season and pair ’em with some grilled bread!

I am typically a huge proponent of using whole wheat bread whenever possible, but I actually opted for white ciabatta this time around. I didn’t want the slightly sweet flavor and hearty texture of whole wheat bread that I usually love to overpower the mild tomato flavor, so white bread it was.

The tomatoes are marinated in a garlic-infused olive oil that I probably could have sipped from a spoon (not recommended unless everyone else in your general vicinity partakes in the same activity!)…

… but which I managed to reserve for brushing on the split ciabatta.

Pop those suckers on the grill, and let the flames lick up the olive oil that drips down into the grates. We’re looking for crisp, golden-brown, grill mark-lined bread, so let that fire do its job!


John is the master griller of the two of us, and the first time we made this during vacation the ciabatta had gorgeous dark grill marks. Needless to say, I grilled the bread in these photographs… so it’s not quite as pretty ;). I probably could have left the bread on the grill for a few more minutes.

Not to worry, though, because those gorgeous marinated tomato slices are going to be draped right over the top of the grilled ciabatta anyway!

Crunchy warm bread & juicy sweet tomatoes + the sharp bite of garlic makes just about the perfect summer appetizer, snack, or side dish (or, let’s be honest, meal).

I’m now daydreaming about other delicious toppings I could pile onto grilled bread… sliced sweet peaches with creamy ricotta or crisp apples with fig jam perhaps?

Oh, the possibilities…



Grilled Ciabatta with Marinated Tomatoes

by Lauren Zembron

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Keywords: grill appetizer bread side snack vegetarian vegan bread tomatoes summer

Ingredients (8 servings)

  • 1 (16 oz) loaf ciabatta bread, split in half lengthwise
  • ~ 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley or basil (I forgot this the second time I made it… still delicious!)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 large ripe tomato, preferably organic


Pour the olive oil into a medium mixing bowl.

On a cutting board, sprinkle the 1/4 tsp Kosher salt on the minced garlic. Using a flat side of the knife, carefully scrape the salt into the garlic repeatedly until the mixture becomes a paste.

Stir the garlic paste into the olive oil along with the chopped parsley or basil and salt & pepper to taste.

Thinly slice the tomato and coat the slices in the olive oil. Marinate for 30 minutes.

Preheat your grill to medium-high. Brush/spoon the olive oil evenly onto the cut sides of the bread, reserving the marinated tomatoes.

Place the olive oil-coated ciabatta onto the preheated grill and cook until grill marks appear and bread is crisp, about 5 minutes.

Place grilled bread onto a cutting board and cut into slices. Top each piece of ciabatta with one slice of marinated tomato.

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17 thoughts on “Grilled Ciabatta with Marinated Tomatoes

    1. I have become completely obsessed with our grill… I was even out there grilling chicken in the crazy downpours last night ;). I think it was the first thing John bought when we moved!

  1. Hi Lauren,
    Okay, I am completely hungry now. I grow my own vegetables in my garden and I have an abundance of tomatoes in there. I will have to buy some ciabatta bread tomorrow and make this dish.

  2. I’m pretty sure this is the meal I’d take to a desert island. Doesn’t get better than bread + olive oil + tomatoes…in any format, but especially this one! Looks fantastic :)

  3. This recipe epitomize simple summer meals! Delicious! Just discovered your blog via a comment on Kath Eats…. and was glad to discover you are also a Boston blogger. Don’t know how we haven’t come across each other since we seem to read a lot of the same blogs — but great to know about you regardless!

  4. Boy does that look way above ordinary garlic bread! Grilling season is over, so it won’t be quite as good, but I have some ciabatta that I made to use up and there’s still the broiler. I haven’t heard of the method of chopping the garlic together with the salt into a paste that you use, I’ll have to try that! BTW I make ciabatta partially with white whole wheat flour– it is whole grain and it is is more flavorful than white, yet it’s pretty mild, it’s a good way to amp up the nutrition in recipes where you would ordinarily want to use all regular white flour.
    Mary @ Fit and Fed recently posted..White Whole Wheat Ciabatta

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