12 Tantalizing Tomato Recipes You Must Try

By , SparkPeople Blogger
All hail the tomato! Not only are they delicious, they're chock full of health-boosting antioxidants, carotenoids, potassium, vitamin A and vitamin C, and could even help reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer, according to WebMD. Plus, you can get your hands on tomatoes all year round.

While you can always just slice a tomato, add a little salt and enjoy, there are plenty of more creative ways to turn this versatile fruit into the star of a satisfying meal.

1. Grilled Okra & Tomato Skewers
Okra and tomatoes make a surprisingly well-suited pair, especially when they're skewered, grilled, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic glaze, and seasoned with pepper and sea salt. Add them to a bed of fresh greens for a succulent summer salad.

Image via GrillGirl.com
2. Cornmeal Thumbprint Cookies with Tomato Jam
Satisfy your sweet tooth without dooming your diet with these wholesome treats. The thumbprints of the cornmeal dough are filled with tomato jam, which stays fresh in the fridge for up to six months.

3. Panzanella (Bread & Tomato Salad)
One bite of this zesty salad and you'll feel like you could be sitting in a trendy Italian bistro. It's a great way to use up extra bread, along with cucumber, onion, capers and, of course, fresh tomatoes. A blend of seasonings and feta cheese add unique flavor.

4. Herbed Tuna in Tomatoes
Who needs sandwiches when you can serve herbed tuna inside fresh, hollowed-out tomatoes? Prepare these zesty bowls to add a gourmet flair to lunch, or use them as a unique hors d'oeuvre. 

5. Avocado Tomato Salad
This light, refreshing salad pairs tangy tomatoes with fresh avocado over a bed of greens, for a versatile dish that can serve as an appetizer or the main event. Did we mention it's vegan?

Image via HurrytheFoodUp
6. Tomato Vegetable Casserole
Put a succulent summer spin on a traditional veggie casserole by layering it with fresh sliced tomatoes.  

7. Greek Tomato Tart
It might look like a dessert at first glance, but this mouth-watering pie could be a meal in itself. Fresh pastry is loaded with sliced plum tomatoes, olives and feta cheese, then drizzled with olive oil, seasoned and baked to a golden brown.

8. Grilled Bleu Cheese & Herb Stuffed Tomatoes
When it comes to unique veggie side dishes, GrillGirl knocked it out of the park with these cheese-stuffed, grilled tomatoes. Bonus: They're just as easy on the eyes as they are pleasing to the palate.

IImage via GrillGirl.com
9. Easy Tomato Spinach Pasta
Fresh tomatoes pay a supportive (but essential) role in this vitamin-rich pasta dish. Healthy family meal in less than half an hour: Check!

Image via HurrytheFoodUp
10. Fire-Roasted Tomato Soup with Crostini Skewers
All tomato soup is not created equal. Case in point: Grilled tomatoes add a smoky flavor to make this bisque far from boring. Crostini skewers on the side are perfect for dipping, and boost the dish's kid-friendly factor. 

Image via GrillGirl.com
11. Pork Cutlets with Pan-Roasted Tomatoes
Thin-sliced pork tenderloin and pan-roasted tomatoes—seasoned to perfection with vinegar, thyme, salt and pepper—are a match made in dinner heaven.

12. Spinach Tomato Quesadillas
There's always room for cheese, especially when it gets cozy inside a tortilla with spinach, tomato and pesto. Packed full of vitamins, iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium, this dish is far healthier than its taste implies. 

Image via HurrytheFoodUp
Which of these tomato recipes would you like to try? Any other favorites you'd add to the list?