Easy Southern Tomato Pie is a savory classic full of fresh sweet ripe tomatoes, with melted cheddar cheese, and blanketed with a tangy mixture of mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, and parmesan cheese.
All of this cheesy, tomatoey deliciousness is baked in a rich buttery crust, made with Ritz crackers and even more parmesan cheese.
Like my savory Cherry Tomato Pie and sweet Green Tomato Pie, this cheesy southern tomato pie is quick and easy to prepare. It’s a tasty treat full of old-fashioned tomato goodness that can be served for breakfast, lunch, or even a light dinner.
Because it can be served warm or at room temperature, this fresh tomato pie is also perfect for summer barbecues, special occasions brunches, and potlucks.
Ingredients – here’s what you will need:
- Ripe tomatoes – One of the best things about summer is homegrown or locally grown fresh ripe tomatoes, and this easy tomato pie recipe gives them a chance to shine.
- Sharp cheddar cheese – besides ensuring you have the very best tomatoes, the right cheese is crucial for the best-tasting pie. Cheddar cheese melts easily and provides just the right amount of cheesy deliciousness. have also included below a list of other types of cheese that will work well.
- Mayonnaise – for the best results it’s important to use creamy high-quality mayonnaise in this recipe. There is a difference in taste in different brands. like Dukes and that’s what I use, but Hellman’s, Kraft, or Blue Plate work too. don’t recommend going the low-fat route in this recipe.
- Dijon mustard – made with white wine vinegar, adds a sweet and tangy flavor to the topping.
- Parmesan cheese – adds its characteristic nutty flavor to the topping and even more flavor to the pie crust.
- Kosher salt & ground black pepper – enhance all of the flavors and pull them together to create a rich flavorful savory pie that is simply divine.
- Ritz crackers – are a surprise ingredient that makes the most delicious, buttery pie crust.
- Butter – binds the cracker crumbs together and adds richness.
- Fresh basil – (not pictured) is optional but I like to use it as a garnish. It adds a pop of color and basil and tomatoes are a match made in heaven.
Directions – here’s how to make it:
- When you are ready to make your pie, gather your ingredients, and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Make the pie crust by adding the crackers to a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process until they are fine crumbs.
- Add the melted butter and process until the butter and crumbs are combined. P ur this mixture into a nine-inch pie plate.
- Use your hands or the smooth bottom of a glass or measuring cup to press the mixture down evenly and up the sides of the pie plate.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- While the crust is baking, thinly slice the tomatoes (no need to blanch or peel them).
- Place the tomato slices in a single layer on folded-up paper towels. Top with just a bit of kosher salt and let the slices drain for at least 20 minutes. Blot the tops of the tomatoes with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture.
- When the crust is cool, sprinkle one-third of the grated cheddar cheese over the bottom. Add a layer of sliced tomatoes and season with salt and pepper.
- Repeat with another layer of cheddar cheese and tomatoes and top with the rest of the grated cheese. You should have three layers of cheese and two layers of tomatoes.
- Mix the mayonnaise, parmesan cheese, and Dijon mustard in a small bowl. Use a knife or offset spatula to spread it evenly over the top of the cheese. (Don’t worry if some of the shredded cheese gets mixed in with the topping. It won’t hurt anything.)
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until the topping is lightly browned and the mixture is bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Let the pie cool for at least 35 minutes before slicing it to allow the filling to firm up.
Frequently asked questions:
Inspired by Italian tomato pie, a type of Sicilian pizza with a thick crust and tomato sauce, tomato pie is a relatively new kid on the block that first became popular in the ’70s.
I’m not sure how it came to be considered a southern dish, but at its core, tomato pie is a versatile, flavor-packed masterpiece, with layers of ripe tomatoes and cheeses baked in a pie crust.
Summer homegrown or locally grown tomatoes are juicy and flavorful with a magical tomato taste all their own. Beefsteak, Better Boy, and Roma varieties are great and, if you are lucky enough to find them, heirloom tomatoes are even tastier.
I’ve seen recipes that say you can use canned tomatoes in a pinch, but I haven’t ever tried that and can’t recommend it. Tomato pie is a dish that showcases fresh ripe tomatoes.
This recipe has a fun twist, and that is using crushed Ritz crackers to make the crust. If you have a pie crust recipe you love, feel free to use that, or you could save time and buy a premade pie crust or use puff pastry.
But why not try this easy pie crust recipe? I couldn’t be simpler or more delicious, and the crunchiness of the buttery crackers will elevate your pie to the next level. Of course, you don’t have to use Ritz, any buttery cracker will work too.
I have seen recipes that call for peeling the tomatoes, but I never peel mine. However, if you prefer, feel free to peel them before slicing them.
Yes, for a crustless tomato pie, simply leave off the crust, spray your pie plate with a non-stick cooking spray, layer the tomatoes and cheese, add the topping, and bake as directed.
The crust does add stability to this pie, so it may be harder to serve it in slices, but whether you use a spoon or pie server to serve it, it will still be delicious!
This recipe is delicious as is, but feel free to change it up and make it your own by adding any of the following:
- Different combinations of cheeses; think Gruyere, provolone, Fontina, mozzarella, Havarti, Monterey Jack, Colby, or a Mexican or Italian blend. Ricotta, even pimento cheese work too.
- Add a handful of cooked crumbled bacon, or prosciutto.
- Use several different varieties or colors of tomatoes or mix in some cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes.
- Add different combinations of fresh herbs in addition to the basil; think thyme, chives, oregano, parsley, or rosemary.
- How about throwing in a cup of fresh summer corn or even shredded or chopped zucchini?
- Or, you could cover the bottom of the crust with a thin layer of basil pesto, olive tapenade, or caramelized onions.
- One last crazy thought, substitute my garlic-herb butter for the regular butter called for in the crust recipe to ramp up the flavor even more.
- This easy tomato pie is best served fresh the day you make it. I prefer it at room temperature, but it can also be eaten cold or warm.
- Leftovers should be covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to three days. I do not recommend freezing this pie.
- If you don’t have Ritz crackers, try substituting saltine crackers or cheese crackers such as Cheez-its.
- To keep your tomato pie from being soggy, don’t skip the step of letting your tomato slices drain. Make sure to remove as much moisture as possible by blotting them with paper towels.
- Don’t have a food processor? Place the crackers in a plastic bag. Then, use a rolling pin or the heel of your hand to crush them.
- If you are using a purchased pie crust or puff pastry be sure to follow the directions on the package. It needs to be blind-baked first. Then, let it cool completely before adding the filling.
- For the best results, let the finished tomato pie cool for at least 35 minutes. It needs time to set up a bit before you cut into it.
More tomato recipes:
If you love tomatoes as I do, you also might want to check out these popular recipes: Fried Green Tomatoes, Baked Tomato Casserole, Tomato Cobbler with Cornmeal Cheddar Biscuits, Tomato Gravy, Cucumber and Tomato Salad, Tomato Jam, Roasted Tomato Soup, and Muffin Pan Tomato Tarts.
And, if you like Southern-Style recipes, I know you will love these favorites: Southern Potato Salad, Southern Pecan Praline Cake, Southern-Style Crab Cakes, Southern Field Peas, Traditional Southern Cornbread, and Southern Pimento Cheese Spread.
Intrigued? Check out, here is a link to all of my Southern Recipes.
★★★★★ If you make this recipe, please leave a comment and give it a star rating. I would love to know how you liked it!
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Easy Southern Tomato Pie
Tomato Pie Filling
- 4 tomatoes large, or 5-6 medium
- 8 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese 2 cups
- 1.5 teaspoons kosher salt divided
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Cracker Pie Crust Ingredients
- 1.5 cups crushed Ritz crackers about 45 crackers
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- To make the pie crust add the crackers to a food processor fitted with a steel blade and process until they have broken down into fine crumbs.
- Add the melted butter and parmesan cheese and process until everything is combined. Pour this mixture into a nine-inch pie plate. Use your hands or the smooth bottom of a glass to press the mixture down evenly and up the sides of the pie plate.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- While the crust is baking, slice the tomatoes (no need to blanch them or peel them). Sprinkle with a little salt and let the slices drain on a paper towel for at least 20 minutes. Blot the tops of the tomatoes with a paper towel to remove any additional moisture.
- When the crust is cool, sprinkle ⅓ of the grated cheese over the bottom. Add a layer of sliced tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Repeat with another layer of cheese and tomatoes and top with the rest of the grated cheese. Top with any remaining salt and pepper. (You should have three layers of cheese and two layers of tomatoes.)
- Mix the mayonnaise, parmesan cheese, and Dijon mustard in a small bowl and spread evenly over the top of the cheese using a knife or offset spatula.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the topping is lightly browned and the mixture is bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Let the pie cool for at least 35 minutes before slicing it.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.