Appetizer Featured Recipes — 26 September 2016

This freshly diced tomato, basil and garlic appetizer is the perfect Italian light bite.

By: Jodie Shield, RDN

Juicy, ripe tomatoes handpicked from your garden or local framer’s market – does it get any more delish? It sure does, and it’s called bruschetta. This Italian appetizer is so easy to make and one of my absolute favorites. As the nutrition analyst for the Chicago Tribune I must confess that I LOVE their bruschetta recipe, but the dietitian in me couldn’t resist tweaking it a bit to trim calories and prep time.

To make my fast and fresh bruschetta I tripled the basil, added minced garlic, and marinated them with the diced tomato (no olive oil yet). Instead of toasting the baguette, I simply skipped this step and scooped a tablespoon of bruschetta onto a thinly sliced baguette round and drizzled a splash of EVO over the top. If you have any leftover bruschetta, which I seriously doubt, it stores nicely in the refrigerator for up to two days.

For additional healthy appetizer recipes like Roasted Pepper and Goat Cheese Dip, Caprese Bites, and Spinach and Artichoke Dip, download my free app Eat Healthy Homemade Meals from iTunes or Google Play!

Fast and Fresh Bruschetta

16 servings

Prep Time = 15 minutes

Cooking Time = 0 minutes


  • 2 large tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper (optional)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon EVO (extra virgin olive oil)


  1. Dice tomatoes, discarding core, and transfer to medium-size bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper if using. Add minced garlic and chopped basil. Stir gently and let marinate about 10 minutes.
  1. Spoon bruschetta over thinly sliced baguette rounds or whole grain crackers  and drizzle with EVO – chow!

Nutritional Information per (1 Tablespoon) Serving (without salt or bread): 12 calories, 0 grams protein, 1 gram carbohydrate, 1 gram fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 0 milligrams cholesterol, 0 grams fiber, 1 gram sugar, 1 milligrams sodium


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About Author


Jodie Shield, M.Ed., R.D., L.D.N. Jodie Shield has been a consultant and spokesperson in the field of nutrition for over two decades. A former national media spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association (1989-1995), she has worked extensively with the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center and taught nutrition and medical dietetics at the University of Illinois. Currently she is a complemental faculty member of the College of Health Sciences in the Department of Clinical Nutrition at Rush University in Chicago.

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