A Publication of WTVP

Cast-Iron Roasted Caprese Sandwich

by Mary DiSomma |
Cast-Iron Roasted Caprese Sandwich

Cast-Iron Roasted Caprese Sandwich

Cast-Iron Roasted Caprese Sandwich

The French call them pomme d’amour, or “love apples.” In Italy, you’ll enjoy pomi d’oro. or “apples of gold.” But we can thank the Aztecs for the root of the name we associate with this garden favorite. Tomatoes, or tomatls as the Aztecs referred to them, are a favorite in gardens and farmers markets from now through early fall.

A summer never goes by without tomatoes growing on the vine in our garden. Many make it into my homemade marinara sauce, but we are always looking for ways to enjoy them in other preparations.

You probably have enjoyed a Caprese salad with the ripest tomatoes, slices of fresh mozzarella and just-picked basil topped off with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. But have you ever enjoyed it in a sandwich?

When I’m looking for a hearty lunch, I pull out my cast-iron skillet and turn on the grill. My Caprese sandwiches are easy to pack for a picnic. It’s a pure taste of summer in every bite!

  • Prep Time15 min
  • Cook Time5 min
  • Total Time20 min
  • YieldServes 4
  • Course
    • Lunch
  • Cooking Method
    • grill
    • cast-iron skillet


  • One loaf italian ciabatta

  • 3 cups cherry tomatoes

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

  • 2/3 cup basil pesto6 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into ¼-inch rounds

  • 3 cups loosely packed arugula

  • ½ red onion, peeled and thinly sliced

  • ¼ cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves



Split the bread in half lengthwise. Brush cut sides with 2 tablespoons olive oil.


Heat the outdoor grill. When hot, place the bread slices, cut side down, on the grill to slightly char the bread.


In a mixing bowl, combine the tomatoes with the remaining olive oil and the balsamic vinegar. Transfer the mixture into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet. Place the pan in the center of the hot grill. Roast the tomatoes for 3 minutes, stirring lightly. The tomatoes should start to blister but not burst open. Use a hot pad to remove the pan from the grill.


Spread the pesto on the top piece of the toasted bread. Place the fresh mozzarella on the bottom piece of bread. Top with the tomatoes followed by the fresh arugula, basil leaves and red onion. Place the top piece of bread on the filling and press gently.

The sandwich can be served immediately or wrapped in foil and placed back on the grill for 2 minutes if you would like all that mozzarella to slightly melt.


Mary DiSomma

Mary DiSomma

Our chef lives in Oak Park and Cuba, Illinois. She is an author, publisher, philanthropist, podiatrist, entrepreneur, wife to Bill and mom to four adult children. She also appears on Peoria Magazine’s You Gotta See This! on WTVP PBS