Tomato salad recipe from Sicily. An Italian recipe for a tomato salad with olives, capers, anchovies, fresh oregano, and basil.

tomato salad with onions
tomato and red onion salad on a red fine china plate

This onion and tomato salad recipe comes from Sicily. The Aeolian tomato salad is traditional to the Aeolian Islands: paradise beaches and delicious food, a place to go!

It is a fresh tomato salad with red onions, typically the Tropea onions (which Sicilians borrowed from near Calabria), capers, olives, and the unmissable Sicilian ingredient: anchovies.

I suggest you make the tomato salad in advance, at least a couple of hours: this will give basil and oregano the time to release their aroma and ingredients to combine into a wonderful, flavorful dish. You should also keep the tomato salad out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature before serving it, in case you did it the day before. Cold mitigates flavors and certainly doesn’t make this salad more refreshing.

Use salad tomatoes, and red, sweet onions, if you can’t find the Tropea ones. You can also use white onions or shallots. The first ones will be stronger in flavor, and the latter much more delicate. Olives, instead, must be green! Deciding between fresh and dry oregano is difficult: they’re both delicious. The dry one is only a little less aromatic and less intense in flavor, which for some, is a plus. You try and then decide, or simply use what you have at hand.

Italian tomato salad with onions
Italian tomato salad
5 from 1 vote

tomato salad recipe

Course authentic Italian recipes
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2
Author Claudia Rinaldi | Gourmet Project


  • 5-6 medium red salad tomatoes
  • 1 handful green olives
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1 tropea onion or red onion
  • 4-5 anchovies
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh oregano or 2 tablespoons of dried oregano
  • 6-8 basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Pit the olives. Peel and thinly slice the onion. Finely chop the anchovies. Finely chop the oregano and basil leaves.

  2. Thinly slice the tomatoes. Add the olives, capers, onion, herbs, and anchovies. And salt and pepper to taste.

  3. Season with olive oil and vinegar.

  4. Mix and enjoy!

enjoy your Italian tomato salad!