Tomato Pie

Favorite SummerCasseroleVegetarianTomato

Tomato Pie! Fresh chopped tomatoes, basil and onions, topped with mixture of shredded cheese and mayonnaise, baked in a pie shell.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Here’s one of the best loved recipes on the site—tomato pie! Perfect at the peak of summer tomato season.

One of the great things about going on vacation is I get to hang out with my friends, and sometimes meet their friends, who sometimes have OMG-this-is-so-GOOD dishes that they bring over. This tomato pie recipe is a result of one of these encounters.

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The first time I heard of it (“tomato pie”, hmm, oooookaaaay) my brain suffered a little cognitive dissonance (never heard those two words, tomato and pie, joined at the hip like that before). Seconds after taking a bite however, I was begging for the recipe.

Tomato Pie

It’s a savory pie, not sweet, filled with fresh garden tomatoes, sprinkled with basil, and held together with a mixture of mayonnaise and shredded cheese. The egg in the mayo acts as a binder to help hold the filling in place.

Many thanks to Diane Connolly (aka Lady Di) who graciously wrote it out on some post-it notes for me at the dinner table. It is the first thing I cooked when I got back home. Think pizza meets cheesy bread and they make-out in a pie crust.

The recipe lends itself to estimates. Handfuls of this, handfuls of that. I measured, but you could eyeball it and it would still work out. Feel free to change the cheeses around, play with the spices. I made a homemade pie crust, but for this recipe a good quality prepared crust would work fine.

Tomato Pie

You could also bulk it up a bit more with a cup or so of fresh corn, or some small diced eggplant that has been lightly browned on the stovetop first.

Tomato Pie Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6

If you want to take this recipe up a notch, you can caramelize the onions while prepping the other ingredients. If you do that, double the amount of onion.

Ingredients

  • 1 9-inch pie shell (see pie crust recipe for homemade version)
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow or red onion (about 1/3 onion, diced)
  • 3-4 tomatoes, cut in half horizontally, squeezed to remove excess juice, roughly chopped, to yield approximately 3 cups (700 ml) chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sliced basil (about 8 large leaves)*
  • 2 cups (8 oz, 225 g) grated cheese (combination of sharp cheddar and Monterey Jack, or Gruyere or Mozzarella)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon (or more to taste) of Frank's Hot Sauce (or Tabasco)
  • Freshly ground black pepper

*To slice basil, chiffonade them by stacking the leaves on top of each other, roll them up like a cigar, starting at one end slice the "cigar" crosswise in thin slices.

Method

1 Pre-bake the crust: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).

If you are using a store-bought pie shell, follow the directions on the package for pre-baking, or pre-bake it in the oven for about 8 to 10 minutes (a little longer for a frozen pie shell), until lightly browned.

If you are using a homemade crust, freeze the crust first, then press a sheet of aluminum foil into the crust to keep the sides of the pie crust from falling down as it cooks. Fill the pie with pie weights such as dry beans or rice to help hold the foil in place.

Pre-bake the homemade crust for 15 minutes, then remove the foil, use the tines of a fork to poke a few small holes in the bottom of the crust (for venting), and bake for 10 more minutes.

2 Salt and drain the tomatoes: Lightly salt the chopped tomatoes and set them in a colander over a bowl to drain while you are pre-baking the crust.

Squeeze as much moisture as you can out of the chopped tomatoes, using either paper towels, a clean dish towel, or a potato ricer.

3 Layer pre-baked pie shell with onions, tomatoes, basil: Sprinkle a layer of chopped onion over the bottom of your pre-baked pie crust shell.

Spread the drained chopped tomatoes over the onions. Sprinkle the sliced basil over the tomatoes.

4 Make cheese mixture, spread over tomatoes: In a medium bowl, mix together the grated cheese, mayonnaise, Tabasco, a sprinkling of  freshly ground black pepper.

The mixture should be the consistency of a gooey snowball. Spread the cheese mixture over the tomatoes.

5 Bake: Place in oven and bake at 350°F (175°C) until browned and bubbly, anywhere from 25 to 45 minutes.

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Tomato pie with bacon and jalapeño from Lisa Fain, the Homesick Texan

Tomato and corn pie from Smitten Kitchen

Tomato Pie

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

435 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. john doe

    the tomato pie is litterally pizza in a pie plate

    xxxxxyyyyy

  2. Mike

    We absolutely love this recipe. I made it with the caramelized onions. We followed the prebake instructions on the box for the pie shell which came out perfect.

    This is going to be a favourite go-to recipe.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  3. Venice Mermaid

    All due respect to the original recipe. Here are my findings:
    I used a store bought crust. The temp for pre-baking should be 450* for 10 min.- ish. Chopped and salted the tomatoes for 1 hr (I was working from home so had the time} then squeezed them out in a couple layers of paper towels. Lots of juice left!
    I don’t like Tabasco so added a splash of chili powder and a dash of out local fav hot sauce.
    Like others said, it was greasy on top at the at the end, but if you rest a couple of paper towels on the top before serving, all that goes away.
    We loved it and will keep it in out fresh tomato rotation!
    Thanks.

  4. Jamie E

    Have been trying to work through a case of some of the best home grown tomatoes on earth and gave this one a shot. First off I didn’t modify the recipe first time around, I don’t know why people do that then post a review, but made this as written with the caramelized onion suggestion to concentrate the flavor and remove the excess water from the onions.

    This recipe absolutely kills it. The textures and flavors just work perfectly. Needs very little seasoning when you have really good tomatoes and fresh basil, everything just speaks for itself in this dish. I admittedly was skeptical about using mayo as a binder, but it definitely works, and there’s no mayo taste in the final product. The only thing I would do differently is adjust the blind baking time on my crust, I underdid it a bit, but just one of those I know for next time changes.

    To the people who have grease issues, I’m betting you are using too much or a type of cheese that produces a ton of oil, like you’d commonly see on top of a pizza. Some brands and types are much worst than the same cheese from another brand. 50/50 sharp white cheddar and monterray jack was perfect for me, browned nicely, no oil whatsoever.

    Anyway, definitely a keeper. I don’t think I would try this with grocery store tomatoes, it really needs to be done with home grown ones IMO. Everything about this is good though.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  5. Kate

    So easy and delish

    xxxxxyyyyy

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