This classic Southern tomato pie is packed with irresistible fresh tomato flavor. With plenty of cheese, garlic, basil, and, of course, tomatoes, it will surely be a hit with your family.
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I absolutely love fresh tomatoes. All year long, I yearn for tomato season so I can once again enjoy endless amounts of fresh, red fruit from my garden.
I love Cucumber Tomato Salad, Tomato Salad, and Creamy Tomato Pasta, but I also love using fresh tomatoes in new, interesting ways. This Southern tomato pie recipe turns ripe, juicy tomatoes into a delicious, complete meal.
Southern Tomato Pie Recipe
The first time I tried tomato pie I was surprised by how well the cheddar cheese and tomatoes tasted together. I usually pair tomatoes with fresh mozzarella or feta cheese but, I must say, cheddar and tomatoes are a pretty stellar combo. Add some chopped basil and garlic to the mix and you have pure flavor perfection.
My Southern tomato pie is baked in a flakey pie crust, which lends a buttery taste and slightly crunchy texture to the pie. I like to use my homemade pie crust recipe but a store-bought crust is a great, quick alternative. The truth is, the filling of this easy tomato pie is the real star of the show. If you love the summery taste of fresh tomatoes, then this recipe is one you absolutely need to try.
(Have some unripe tomatoes that you need to use up? Then make my Fried Green Tomatoes recipe!)
Ingredients for Southern Tomato Pie
See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
- Tomatoes – Firm tomatoes are best for this pie. I like to use Roma tomatoes or Beefsteak, which are both very flavorful but less juicy than other types of heirloom tomatoes.
- Balsamic vinegar – A little bit of balsamic goes a long way in bringing out the flavor of this pie. It adds a tangy taste and a surprising amount of sweetness. Don’t skip this one!
- Garlic – Two cloves of freshly chopped garlic is about 1 ½ teaspoons.
- Cheddar cheese – I like to use sharp cheddar to get an intense, cheesy taste.
- Mayonnaise – Use real, full-fat mayo for the best flavor.
- Pie crust
This recipe is perfect exactly as it is written, however, here are a few ingredients substitutions that will work well.
- Try using a variety of colored tomatoes. A mix of orange, red, and yellow tomatoes makes a very pretty pie.
- Use a mix of mozzarella and cheddar cheese instead of just cheddar.
- Add 1 cup of cooked, crumbled bacon to the pie to make it even more filling. The salty bacon is delicious with the juicy, baked tomatoes.
How to Make Southern Tomato Pie
- Prepare: Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
- Bake the crust: Press your unbaked pie crust into a pie pan and fill it with pie weights. Bake the crust for 15 minutes. It will not be fully baked. Remove the pie weights and set the par-baked crust aside.
- Salt the tomatoes: Place the tomato slices in a large colander. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt, then let them sit. The juices of the tomatoes will drain off and can be discarded.
- Make the filling: Toss the drained tomato slices with basil, cheese, vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper. Pour the tomato filling into the par-baked pie crust.
- Add the mayo: Spread the mayonnaise over the top of the pie filling making it as even as possible.
- Bake: Bake the pie for 30 minutes. The top will be golden brown and the pie will feel firm when gently touched.
- Cool: Let the Southern tomato pie cool for about 20 minutes, then slice and serve.
If you are using big, heirloom tomatoes, sprinkle them with salt and let them drain for at least an hour. Heirloom tomatoes are super juicy and tend to make the pie a little too wet. Letting them sit and drain will help eliminate some of that liquid, but still keep that fresh, incredible flavor of the tomatoes.
How to Store Southern Tomato Pie
Once your pie has cooled, wrap it in plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for 4-5 days. Reheat a slice of pie in the microwave or enjoy it cold, straight from the fridge.
This Southern tomato pie also freezes really well. Wrap the baked pie in plastic wrap, then freeze it for up to three months. Reheat the frozen pie in a 300ºF oven for about 30 minutes or let it thaw overnight in the fridge.
Tomato pie is quite popular in Italy, but this recipe is a classic in the Southern states of the US. The mayonnaise topping and cheddar cheese is the hallmark of a Southern tomato pie and my recipe has both of these necessary ingredients. The garlic, balsamic, and basil are reminiscent of Italy, but the recipe is a true Southern gem.
Yes! You can use cherry tomatoes. Two cups of halved cherry tomatoes will work well in this recipe and make a very sweet tomato pie.
Tomato pie is tangy, herbaceous, and also pretty cheesy. The strong taste of sharp cheddar cheese and fresh, sweet tomatoes are what you will taste in every bite. The flavors of garlic and basil also shine through but it is the tomatoes that really overpower the pie (in a good way!).
Southern Tomato Pie
- 3 tomatoes, medium size
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- ½ cup chopped basil
- 1 ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 1 pie crust, unbaked
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Press the pie crust into the pie dish and fill it with pie weights. Par bake the pie crust for 15 minutes in the oven then remove the pie weights and set the crust aside to cool.
- Put the tomato slices in a colander or strainer and sprinkle them with ½ teaspoon of the salt; toss the tomatoes in the salt. Let the tomatoes sit and drain for 10 minutes. This helps extract some of the juice from the tomatoes which will make the pie less soggy.
- Pour the drained tomato slices into a bowl and add the chopped basil, shredded cheese, balsamic, chopped garlic, remaining salt, and ground black pepper. Stir everything together then pour the mix into the par baked pie crust.
- Spread the mayonnaise over the top of the pie filling.
- Bake the pie for 30 minutes. The top will be golden brown.
- Let the pie cool then slice and serve.