Classic Tomato Sandwiches

$1.67 each
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.93 from 13 votes
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This blog post is more of a love letter to my favorite summer meal than a “recipe.” Tomato sandwiches are one of the first foods I ever fell in love with, and I continue to look forward to summer every year just because of the tomato sandwiches. So it’s about time I formally celebrate their beautiful simplicity and share them with anyone who hasn’t yet had one. Tomato sandwiches are seriously my favorite thing. EVER.

Tomato Sandwiches being built on a wooden cutting board.

What’s on a Tomato Sandwich

There are so many different versions of tomato sandwiches out there, but I’m partial to the classic tomato sandwich consisting only of juicy, ripe tomatoes, creamy mayonnaise, soft white bread, and salt and pepper. That’s it!

The juice from the tomatoes combines with the creamy mayo, salt, and pepper to form a sort of dressing that kind of soaks into the bread and creates the most delicious combo of flavors and textures. It’s so divine that I literally can not eat just one. As soon as I pop that last bite I always make second one!

It’s all about the Tomatoes

This sandwich is all about enjoying the beautiful and delicious tomatoes of summer. If you can, buy tomatoes grown locally for the best flavor. Heirloom tomatoes are gorgeous and delicious, but they will probably increase the price of your sandwich a bit. If you can, hit up your local farmer’s markets or neighbors who might be growing tomatoes to grab a few of those fresh summer beauties!

What Kind of Bread to Use for Tomato Sandwiches

A lot of tomato sandwich lovers insist on soft white bread, but I’m a bit more flexible when it comes to the bread. I do like a little texture, so if my bread is very soft I’ll pop it in the toaster just to give it a little tan. I also like whole wheat bread for tomato sandwiches quite a bit, but I think I’m in the minority there. Most bread will work for tomato sandwiches, but I would try to avoid super crusty or chewy bread, like a baguette, because it will overpower the soft texture of the tomatoes inside.

Real Mayo Only, Please

Talk to any Southerner and they’re likely to have very strong feelings when it comes to their favorite mayonnaise, especially for tomato sandwiches. Dukes and Blue Plate are both popular choices, but a good ol’ classic Hellmann’s mayo is also good, IMHO! Bottom line, it’s got to be CREAMY.

Tomato Sandwich Variations

A couple of years ago I posted a video about my love for tomato sandwiches on social media and I asked YOU how you like to make your tomato sandwiches. I got some wonderful responses! Here are some other ingredients people love to put on tomato sandwiches:

  • Rub raw garlic on the bread before spreading on the mayo
  • Lettuce and bacon (BLT!)
  • Cucumber
  • Cheese (goat cheese, fresh mozzarella, or cheddar)
  • Fresh basil
  • Sweet onion
  • Cream cheese instead of mayo
  • Pesto
  • Hummus instead of mayo
  • Cavenders Greek seasoning
  • Everything bagel seasoning

What do you like to put on YOUR tomato sandwiches?? Let us know in the comments below!

Side view of a sliced and stacked tomato sandwich.
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Tomato Sandwiches

4.93 from 13 votes
Tomato sandwiches are a summertime staple. With juicy ripe tomatoes, creamy mayonnaise, and soft bread, they're a simple summer delight!
Side view of a sliced and stacked tomato sandwich.
Servings 1 sandwich
Prep 5 minutes
Total 5 minutes


  • 1/2 large tomato ($0.77)
  • 2 slices white bread ($0.64)
  • 3 Tbsp mayonnaise ($0.22)
  • 1 pinch salt ($0.02)
  • 1 pinch pepper ($0.02)


  • If you prefer your bread toasted, begin by toasting the bread. Slice the tomatoes into large rounds (horizontally around the equator of the tomato).
  • Spread a thick layer of mayonnaise over each slice of bread. Top one slice of bread with tomato slices, then sprinkle a generous pinch of salt and pepper over the tomatoes and second slice of bread.
  • Close the sandwich with the second slice of bread, cut the sandwich in half, and serve immediately.

See how we calculate recipe costs here.


Serving: 1sandwichCalories: 437kcalCarbohydrates: 28gProtein: 6gFat: 33gSodium: 549mgFiber: 2g
Read our full nutrition disclaimer here.
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How to Make Tomato Sandwiches – Step by Step Photos

Tomatoes being sliced.

Slice your tomato first. I like to slice horizontally across the tomato to get the biggest slices possible. The thickness of the slices are up to you, but I like to do a medium-width. Not too thin so I don’t have to do too many layers, but not so thick that I can’t overlap them at all.

Mayonnaise being spread onto bread.

If you prefer to have toasted bread, make sure you’ve got that going while you’re slicing the tomatoes. Spread a nice layer of mayonnaise over each piece of bread (about 1.5 Tbsp per slice, depending on the size of your bread).

Tomato slices on the bread with salt and pepper.

Layer the tomatoes onto the bread, using as much as you’d like (this part is just personal preference). Top the tomatoes and the other slice of bread with a generous pinch of salt and pepper.

Sliced tomato sandwich held close to the camera.

Place the other slice of bread on top and slice the sandwich in half (horizontal or diagonal, you do you). Enjoy the sandwich immediately. …And then make a second one. ;)

Side view of a sliced and stacked tomato sandwich.

Seriously. My mouth is watering just looking at that. 🤤

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  1. My favorite sandwich is tomato and peanut butter on one piece of bread, mayo on the other piece of bread and salt and pepper. Sweet pickles and peanut butter are good too, believe it or not

  2. Kewpie mayo with chili crisp as your spread is my go to spread for tomato sandwiches!

  3. Best way I do it is with soft white bread, heirloom tomato, good layer of mayo, lots of pepper, very generous amount of salt. Lastly thinly sliced jalopeno. It’s a joy to eat

  4. So simple. I love my tomato sandwiches in the summer. The grocery store tomatoes don’t do me justice. I travel 15 mi to the farmer’s market for a real tomato. I use sourdough bread after toasting. Ummm good. Thanks for your blog on a tomato sandwich..

  5. I might be a heretic for saying this, but I’ve been sprinkling Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend on my tomato sandwiches lately, and it’s pretty dang tasty!

    Though this recipe as posted here is pretty perfect as it is!

  6. I love tomato sandwiches with Jersey tomatoes. They are the best, but hard to find if not at the Jersey shore. I eat them on potato bread or rolls, with american cheese, or plain with mayo.

  7. Toasted sourdough bread, mayo, very thinly sliced red onion, big juicy slices of ripe tomato, salt and pepper. 🤤

  8. Your tomatoes in photos aren’t ripe enough. Otherwise this northern guy loves them with home grown Black Krim or Genuine tomatoes with toasted whole grain bread. Otherwise just like your recipe. Sometimes I put smoked almonds on. These sandwiches make end of a short Pacific Northwest summer something to look forward to.