CREATIVE FAMILY FUN: Enjoy taste of summer with tomato pie

By Donna Erickson

This may look like pizza, but it’s not. (Photo by Donna Erickson)

It tastes like summer when it’s not. Looks like pizza, but it’s not. So, what is it? Tomato pie! It’s our new family favorite for a winter supper when we long for something with a fresh and zesty Italian flavor. I serve it with a healthy green salad and crunchy French bread. Hungry yet?

Just pick up fresh tomatoes, garlic cloves and rub some fresh basil leaves between your fingers  and be transported to a warmer season as you prepare a tasty meal with your kids.




1 9-inch refrigerated ready-made pie crust, or prepare an easy homemade crust (see below)

1 1/3 cups shredded Italian-blend cheese or mozzarella

2-4 cloves fresh garlic, minced

2 tablespoons fine dry Italian-season breadcrumbs

2 pounds fresh ripe tomatoes, cut into slices or wedges (about 6 cups)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil


Here’s the fun:

  1. Unfold pie crust. On a lightly floured surface, roll crust to a 12-inch circle. Place in a 9-inch pie plate or quiche dish. Flute edges with fingers. Bake according to product instructions until set and dry.
  2. Remove from oven and sprinkle 1/3 cup cheese evenly over shell. Sprinkle garlic and 2 teaspoons of crumbs over cheese. Top with one third of the tomato wedges or slices. Let kids repeat sequence to form three layers topped with the remaining 1/3 cup of cheese. It will be full!
  3. Sprinkle with salt and bake in a 375 F oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until tomatoes are just starting to brown. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack.
  4. Sprinkle with basil leaves. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.




4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 cup all-purpose flour

Pinch of salt


  1. Place the cream cheese and butter in a large bowl. Add flour and salt. Work together with a pastry blender. Gather the soft dough into a ball with your hands and press into a 9-inch pie pan. This is a perfect job for your child to do. Simply set the ball in the middle of the pan, and press the dough out in all directions to extend slightly over the rim. Flute the edges with fingers. Prick holes with fork. Bake at 425 F for 8 minutes, then follow step 2 above.


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(c) 2022 Donna Erickson

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