Tomato Basil Bread

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it’s served on.
That’s where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!Ah, Fall has arrived in full force here in upstate New York.  The leaves are just starting to turn and football is back.  I’ve been known to set up a small tv on the back porch and hang out next to the smoker watching college football all day.  When I’m not outside with the smoker, then there’s a good chance you’ll find me inside baking bread.  That’s right…baking season is back!

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!I’ve mentioned it before, but baking homemade bread is seriously one of my favorite pastimes.  I find it fascinating how just a handful of very basic ingredients can be transformed in a matter of hours into an amazing loaf of bread.  When I first learned to bake bread, I would follow the recipes exactly.  Down to the very last gram of flour.  And while I’m still very careful with my measurements, I’ve been enjoying playing around with different add-ins lately.

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!My wife and I love eating fresh tomatoes straight out of the garden.  We slice the ‘maters up and top ’em with fresh basil, a pinch of salt and some olive oil.  We were doing this the other day, and that’s when I got the crazy idea to use these flavors in bread.  Tomato Basil Bread.  Just think how good that sounds!

I hit the kitchen armed with my basic sandwich bread recipe.  A bit of tomato paste and dried basil later, I was looking at this beautiful loaf of Tomato Basil Bread.  It was almost too pretty to eat.  Almost.

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!You guys know that Fat Daddio’s is my go-to for professional quality bakeware.  Their pans are made from anodized aluminum which means they are light-weight but also bakery tough.  While I might not be running a professional bakery out of my home kitchen, I do bake a lot.  And I need my bakeware to last.  Fat Daddio’s bread pans are temperature rated up to 550°F which means they are perfect for all types of bread baking.  I suspect this bread pan is going to get a lot of use in the coming months!

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!I know some of you might be afraid of using yeast.  Don’t be.  I prefer to think of yeast as my little helper in the kitchen.  It seriously does most of the work for you.  If you’ve made a quick bread recipe (like this Raspberry Crumble Bread) before, then you can make this loaf of Tomato Basil Bread.  The only difference is that this dough hangs out in a warm place for a couple of hours before going into the oven.  I often just turn my oven light on and then put the dough in the oven.  This creates a nice, confined warm spot for the dough to rise.  (Just don’t forget to take the dough out when it comes time to preheat the oven!)

Now that Fall baking season has arrived, what is your favorite thing to bake?

Did you bake a loaf of this Tomato Basil Bread at home?  Leave a comment.  Or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog)!

Looking for more bread recipes?  Check out these other favorites:

Bacon-Wrapped Breadsticks with Queso
Almond Flour Bread
Swirled Cinnamon Bread
Stuffed Italian Bread
Parmesan Garlic Monkey Bread

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!

Tomato Basil Bread

A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 55 minutes
Servings: 16 slices
Calories: 114kcal

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Tbsp dried basil
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 medium tomato

Instructions

  • In the bowl of a countertop mixer, add the flour, sugar, yeast, salt, basil and crushed red pepper; stir until well combined.
  • Add butter, milk and tomato paste; mix on low speed until blended.
  • Increase speed to medium and mix for 3-4 minutes, or until dough is smooth.
  • Place dough in a large bowl and cover lightly with plastic wrap. Let dough rest in a warm (85°F) location for 60 minutes, or until almost doubled in size.
  • Flip the dough onto a lightly oiled countertop and fold/press it into a 10" log. Place the dough seam-side down into a greased 10"x5"x3" bread pan.
  • Spray top of dough with baking spray and lightly cover with plastic wrap. Place dough back in a warm location for 60 more minutes, or until dough has just begun to rise over the edge of the pan.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Slice the tomato thinly and pat slices dry with paper towels.
  • Remove plastic wrap and brush top of loaf lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle half of the Parmesan cheese on top of the loaf. Arrange tomato slices on top of dough and then sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
  • Bake at 375°F for 33-38 minutes, or until top is golden brown in color.
  • Let bread cool for 20 minutes in the pan and then turn loaf out onto cooling rack until fully cooled. (Note: If you aren’t planning on eating the bread within a couple of days, wrap it tightly and freeze it instead. This bread freezes quite well!)

Notes

Tomatoes contain a lot of water. Make sure to slice the tomato very thinly and also pat slices dry as much as possible before placing them on top of the dough.
As this bread contains fresh tomatoes, leftovers should be stored in the refrigerator.

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A sandwich is only as good as the bread it is served on. That's where this amazing Tomato Basil Bread comes in!

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39 Comments

    1. This bread was indeed freaking delicious, Alice! We used about half of it for regular sandwiches, but then used the rest for some BLT’s…ummm, woah! 🙂

    1. I totally agree, Dannii! I know that homemade bread takes more time than just picking up a loaf at the store, but woah…the difference is huge! 🙂

  1. Bread! My kriptonite and it’s homemade!! David you’re killing me!!! In a good way if that’s possible. 🙂 Never made homemade bread, but will in the immediate future…bread maker in route! Question. Can a recipe made by hand be changed for making in a bread machine? Thanks for sharing my friend!

    1. I couldn’t agree more, Tonya! If there’s one thing I enjoy more than making bread is eating it…haha! So a recipe can definitely still be used in a bread machine, but I know some people still prefer to shape the bread by hand at the end just because bread machines always produce the same shape loaf. You’ll have to experiment a bit with it, but that’s the fun part!! I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

  2. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Tomato Basil Bread before! Ever!!! And I worked in a bakery!
    This loaf with crushed red pepper and tomato paste sounds wonderful, David! Dude – you need to open a bakery with breads and cakes! I might just trudge up to Upstate NYC if you did!

    1. I always forget that you worked in a bakery, Shashi! Can I just say #jealous? I worked in a little bakery here for a couple of months, but it really was a sorry excuse for a bakery. I only learned how NOT to bake…haha! Wait…did you just say you’d trudge up and be my first customer? If I hang a sign saying “David’s Bakery–open for business” off my mailbox, does that count?? 🙂

  3. Love this bread, David! Tomato, basil and Parmesan is a classic combo! Delicious – the sandwich you made using this bread looks incredible! 😀

    1. Yeah, I agree, Jess! I love bruschetta because of the classic flavors…so that’s why I was like “hey, let’s make a bread with these same flavors in it!” And that bread made for some pretty epic sandwiches! 🙂

  4. Wow. This looks amazing! What a beautiful recipe! So perfect for fall. And I hear ya! I worked in Upstate NY over the summer and by the end of August it already felt like fall was coming! Such a beautiful time of year up there!

    1. Hey Cailee! Thank you so much! I couldn’t agree with you more about upstate NY in the Fall…it’s absolutely my favorite time of the year up here. Heck, Fall is my favorite time of the year anywhere, but upstate NY really does Fall right! 🙂 What part of upstate NY did you work in this summer?

  5. I love it when baking season comes back 🙂 thanks for this great start to a brand new season in the kitchen I love savory breads like this one!

  6. Hi David! You are a southern boy, so do you ever eat ‘mater sandwiches? Question – could I add some sun dried tomatoes?

    1. Hey there, Dorothy! Ummm…of course I’ve eaten ‘mater sandwiches! Those were a staple when we would go visit my grandparents in South Carolina. 🙂 Oh, the good memories there! And I think you could absolutely add some sundried tomatoes to this bread. It’ll make it a little bit sweeter, but not in a bad way. Go for it!!

  7. Mate! This looks absolutely delicious and when it comes to bread, I always take savory over sweet, even cinnamon raisin bread! My mum and I once devoured an entire loaf of cheese and onion bread and by both I mean 2 slices her, 12 me 😀 You really are the baking master- No following instructions for you!

    1. Wait, savory over cinnamon raisin bread? Are you crazy, man? Cinnamon raisin bread deserves its own spot in the food pyramid! Haha! Laura and I totally could have downed this entire loaf…but we paced ourselves and turned it into legit sandwiches along the way. Thanks, mate!

    1. Cheese makes everything better, Rachelle! Now I want to go make some sort of bread stuffed with cheese. Maybe that can football food for this weekend? 🙂

  8. WOW! That’s what came to my mind when I saw this recipe. I can only imagine how flavorful this bread is! I know it would definitely take any sandwich to the next level!

    Like you, I am totally excited about this upcoming baking season!! I can’t wait to bake more cakes and hopefully one of your breads and or cinnamon roll recipes. Keep hope alive! 🙂

    1. Hey, I have ultimate faith in your baking abilities, Tamara! I didn’t know what the heck I was doing when it came to baking when I first started…but it’s all about trial and error. I made some cookies last week that failed miserably. I was bummed…but that’s life when you bake new recipes, right? Just keep playing around and learning, and soon enough you’ll be eating homemade cinnamon rolls every morning! 🙂

  9. I don’t think I’ve ever tried my hand at making homemade bread, nor have I really had the desire until now – but this tomato basil loaf has made me see the error of my ways! It looks phenomenal! And that’s very true about a sandwich only being as good as the bread. I’m looking forward to trying this!

    1. Yeah…homemade bread is an amazing thing! Sure, it takes time…but the investment is worth it. You start with some simple ingredients, and then you end up with an amazing loaf of bread when it’s all over. I actually find the bread-baking process relaxing. You’ll know what I mean when you pick up that big ball of dough and start shaping it into a loaf…it’s the best feeling ever! Ok, maybe I’ll just strange. Haha! 🙂

  10. What a beautiful bread, David! Tomato and basil – perfect marriage. But if you had added some mozzarella, you would have had Caprese Bread:) I’ve never added tomatos in bread, and I feel I need to fix that, perhaps just with sundried tomatos. Well done!

    1. Ah, I like the way you think, Ben…maybe I’ll add some mozz next time to create that Caprese Bread. Caprese salads are one of my favorites appetizers…they’re so simple yet so delicious. 🙂

    1. Yes! You should totally give tomato basil bread a shot…it’s really fun to make, Morgan! (Just don’t blame me if you eat the whole loaf before it makes it onto a sandwich…haha!)

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