Caprese Skewers Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep/Total Time: 10 min.
Light, satisfying and healthful in one impossibly easy-to-make dish? Yes, please! Enjoy these Caprese skewers as an app, side dish—truly perfect paired with grilled meat or poultry—or a convenient snack. Every bite is a little taste of summer.

Updated: May 24, 2024

The irresistible flavor profile of Caprese skewers is the trifecta of a summer garden bounty. Fresh-from-the-vine tomatoes and homegrown basil, paired with creamy mozzarella? Yes, please!

With a short and humble list of ingredients and minimal prep time (think less than 15 minutes all in), this affordable, easy and crowd-pleasing dish has become a summer staple for many households.

These skewers are served cool and easy to make and take for dinner parties, along with our other favorite barbecue dinner sides. There’s no reason to heat up the kitchen for this one!

Caprese Skewer Ingredients

  • Grape tomatoes: We chose little tomatoes because they fit best on skewers. Cherry tomatoes work, too. Both grape and cherry tomatoes are available in a rainbow of colors, with fun names like Super Sweet 100, Yellow Pear and Chocolate Sprinkles.
  • Fresh mozzarella cheese balls: Be sure you select little cheese balls over the large, sliceable ones. Many brands say “bocconcini” on the package.
  • Basil leaves: Genovese basil, the classic Italian kind, works best here. The lovely green color is also a wonderful contrast to the tomatoes.
  • Olive oil: For testing purposes, we used extra virgin olive oil.
  • Balsamic vinegar: Opt for high-quality balsamic vinegar, if possible. As you will only use olive oil and balsamic vinegar sparingly, it’s easier to justify spending more for the better stuff.

Directions

Step 1: Assemble the skewers

On each skewer, thread a grape tomato, a basil leaf, a mozzarella ball, then another basil leaf, and finally the second grape tomato. Place the loaded skewers on a platter as you go.

Editor’s Tip: If you have extra ingredients, feel free to thread the skewers differently.

Step 2: Make the vinaigrette

In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil and vinegar to make a quick vinaigrette. Lightly drizzle it over the skewers. They’re ready to serve!

Caprese Skewer Variations

  • Mix it up with melon and prosciutto: Mozzarella also shines when served with another delightful summery pairing, melon and prosciutto! For those who love a little salty and a little sweet, this skewer delivers beautifully. Try refreshing honeydew, cantaloupe or even watermelon.
  • Kick up the spice: Sprinkle on a little smoked paprika, or even a few crushed red pepper flakes, depending on how hot (or not) you like your food. For an entirely different flavor twist, try a dash of cumin.
  • Dress up the mozzarella: Use marinated mozzarella balls instead of plain.

Can you make Caprese skewers ahead of time?

Plan to prepare the skewers no earlier than the day you will be serving them. Any earlier and the basil may start to wilt. Hold off on drizzling the balsamic vinegar and olive oil. This is best completed just before serving.

Caprese Skewer Tips

What kind of olive oil should I use?

Quality counts, so remember, at least for this recipe, you’ll be using a scant amount of olive oil. If you can splurge, do so. Our Test Kitchen recently named the best olive oil brands.

How do I keep everything in place on the skewer?

To keep the tomatoes from falling off center, pierce them directly in the middle (aim for the top of the stem and push straight through, being careful not to poke yourself). To keep the basil from tearing, fold it in half (or even in an accordion fold) before threading it onto the skewer.

What if I don’t have balsamic vinegar?

First, put balsamic vinegar on your grocery list. It has so many uses (you’ll thank us later). Second, you can easily replicate that tangy flavor with other kitchen staples that you likely have. If you’re in a pinch, honey, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, maple syrup, molasses, or even soy sauce, crazy as it sounds, can be used to substitute balsamic vinegar.

Caprese Salad Kabobs

Prep Time 10 min
Yield 12 kabobs.

Ingredients

  • 24 grape tomatoes
  • 12 cherry-size fresh mozzarella cheese balls
  • 24 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

Directions

  1. On each of 12 appetizer skewers, alternately thread 2 tomatoes, 1 cheese ball and 2 basil leaves. Whisk olive oil and vinegar; drizzle over kabobs.

Nutrition Facts

1 kabob: 44 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 5mg cholesterol, 10mg sodium, 2g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 0 fiber), 1g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1 fat.

Trade in the usual veggie platter for these fun kabobs. In addition to preparing these for get-togethers, I often make these as snacks for my family. And because assembly is so easy, the kids often ask to help. —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California