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5-Ingredient Burst Tomato Spread

  • Prep Time: 2 mins
  • Cook Time: 18 mins
  • Total Time: 20 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


This Burst Tomato Spread is easy to make with 5 main ingredients and tastes amazing served warm with crusty bread! See note above for possible ingredient variations plus ways to serve this spread.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 dry pints (4 cups) cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes
  • 12 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • (optional) 1 teaspoon brown sugar (or your desired sweetener)
  • fine sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, to taste


  1. Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Add garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and sauté for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add in the tomatoes and stir to combine with the garlic.  Cover the pan and continue to cook, stopping to stir the mixture occasionally, until all of the tomatoes have burst and released their juices to form a sauce, about 6-8 minutes.  Continue to simmer the mixture uncovered for an additional 3-4 minutes, or until it reaches your desired consistency.  (Note that the spread will thicken a bit as it cools.)
  3. Reduce heat to low.  Add in the balsamic, plus any sweetener and/or herbs (if using), and stir until combined.  Taste and season with salt and pepper, as needed.
  4. Serve warm with your favorite crusty bread.