roasted tomatoes and cipollini

You were so enthusiastic when I recently told you about that cubed, hacked caprese I throw together a lot in the summer, I am clearly overdue to tell you about one of my other, favorite “tossed together” meals. Except that while I really like that caprese salad, this roasted tomato and cippoline dish is something of a religion to me: my obsession with it borders on fervor. I don’t understand why I can’t run off with it.

small roma tomatoes

Though the players may seem familiar — there go those white beans and peak-season tomatoes again! — after “roasting the hell out of them” (the directions I usually give friends when they ask how I made them), they become something else entirely. Sometime so delicious, tears well up in my eyes remembering the last time we got to eat this. Like I said, I get a little carried away.

cipollini onions

You start with cipollini (pronounced chip-oh-LEE-nee), or boiling onions. They’re different from regular pearl onions, they roast up sweeter and with no onion bite whatsoever; they soften up in a way you’d expect from root vegetables, becoming almost potato-like but never drying out. (They’re also to-die-for once balsamic glazed.) This is the only laborious part of the dish; you’ve got to peel the little guys first, but once you’re done, you’re home free.

tomatoes and cipollini, ready to roast

Next comes the tomatoes, and on these I am super-particular because I love using mini-romas for this dish. You’re looking for something bigger than your average cherry tomato but smaller than a full-sized tomato; a farmers market at summer’s end will have an array of tomato sizes and shapes to choose from. I believe the right ones will call to you.


And save a few leaves of basil, slices of bread and a drained can of beans, the oven does all of the work — it blisters, it bursts the tomatoes and concentrates their juices, it caramelizes and contrasts the coarse salt, and makes you wonder why you have ever thought dinner need involve more than five ingredients.

roasted tomatoes and cipollini

Roasted tomatoes, previously: Slow-Roasted Tomatoes and Pearl Couscous with Olives and Roasted Tomatoes

One year ago: North Fork Scones
Two years ago: Tortilla de Patatas
Three years ago: Summer Squash Soup

Roasted Tomatoes and Cipollini

Serves four as a small dish, two as a main

1 pound cipollini onions
1 pound small Roma or large cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
Coarse salt
4 slices of country or ciabatta bread, one-inch thick
1 15-ounce can of white beans, drained and rinsed or 1 1/2 cups cooked beans of your choice
Garlic clove (optional)
Few fresh basil leaves, slivered

Preheat oven to 375°F. Boil a small pot of water and blanche the cipollini for 10 seconds, then plunging them into cold water. Use a paring knife to make a small slit in each, and slide them out of their skins and outer layer.

Spread peeled onions and tomatoes in a roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil and a few good pinches of coarse salt. Toss everything together until well-coated and roast in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, reaching in every 15 minutes with a spatula to roll the tomatoes and onions around to ensure all sides get blistered.

Just before you take the tomatoes and onions out, place your bread slices on the oven rack (or a tray, if you’re more refined than us) and let them toast lightly. You can rub the toasts with a halved garlic clove, if you like, while still hot. Use tongs to arrange toasts in one layer on a serving platter. Dump the white beans over the bread, and using a pot holder, scrape the entire contents of the tomato-and-onion roasting pan, still hot, over the white beans. Do not skimp on the juices that have collected, all of them — don’t leave any in the pan. They could make a religious person out of you.

Sprinkle the dish with the basil and eat at once.

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180 comments on roasted tomatoes and cipollini

  1. I clearly need to redo last night’s dinner… Funny timing, I actually made a similarly delicious side dish with cherry tomatoes, one of those gigantic sweet onions chopped up, white beans and sea salt and that’s it – sauteed over low heat, for a good long time. I’m ready to go again and follow your recipe. Looks like delicious perfection.

  2. Oh, how I looove a roasted tomato. Sweet Lord. Sure, people are obsessed with fresh raw ones at their peak and I get it, really I do (especially with fresh mozz–oh I DEFINITELY get that), but you just don’t get more of a huminuh, huminuh factor than when they’re roasted. It’s like somehow they magically taste even more like themselves, you know?

    And those cipollini onions are so flippin’ cute, I could just pinch them. Will be foraging for these later today.

  3. britta

    This looks delicious. It’s perfect for the month leading up to my wedding when I don’t want anything too heavy or greasy. Thank you!

  4. Mary Ellen

    Oh my god, this looks DELIC.

    We’re having people over for dinner tonight and I may stop over to the grocery store on the way home to pick up the ingredients. Let’s hope the small supermarkets out in rural Colorado have cipollini onions!

  5. If this is your religion, then consider me a convert. As if roasted tomatoes weren’t good enough – you added cipollini to them and created a masterpiece. These will appear on the altar of the kitchen table pronto – I now have a craving.

  6. Well you know, this recipe is perfect and perfectly timed. I just wrote about the onion harvest a week ago on my gardening blog. I have baskets and baskets of cured onions now. And I have braided up my Italian buttons, including cippolino, So I am ready! Your blog is great inspiration for this kitchen gardener. I love it. Thank you so much.

  7. I discovered cipollini this month, when I made beef bourguignon for what will be the first of MANY times. I couldn’t get over how sweet and creamy they became. Methinks there’s a hole in my Saturday dinner menu with just enough room for this recipe. :)

  8. Nancy

    The Farmer’s Market near me is only happens on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Which means I have to wait a whole day before I get to enjoy this religious experience.

  9. OMG. I knew I was craving something, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Even though I had never heard of this dish, I’m pretty sure this is what i was craving! Plus, my garden is currently putting out more of those little Romas than I know what to do with. The only problem is… I’m not sure where I’m going to find the cipollini… Does anyone have any suggestions on where I can find them? I live in the Akron, OH area. Maybe they’ve been staring me in the face everytime I go to the store, i just haven’t realized it.

  10. What would happen if you used other kinds of tomatoes — bigger? We are leaving town and I was actually looking for a bean dish to serve as dinner on the road. But I must use up some of the tomatoes we have on hand!
    I imagine it would work if chopped into big chunks, yes?

  11. Fresh San Marzano tomatoes (adorable eggplant-shaped plum tomatoes, usually canned for sauce) would be awesome for this dish, and here in Northern California several farmers at the market have had them this year. I am not sure how they compare to those grown in Italy, but they were so good roasted. I only wish I had cipollinis along with it.
    I wonder what the onions would be like if you roased them peeled & split (like hamburger buns) without boiling them?

  12. Tigli… I just read your comment, and I have worked on farms and grown many kinds of onions. You can ask around for Italian button onions. Some farmers call them cipollino, some cipollini, some just call them button onions. The word comes from Latin for onion with llini or lino diminutive, I believe. Sweet button onions. (looks like I made a typo above on my p’s, I am not such a great typist :( )

  13. NicM

    Ooh yummy this looks perfect for those nights when we want to toss something in the oven for dinner and forget about it for a while. I did love those little slow roasted tomatoes you posted and they made a great burger topping.

  14. I love oven roasted tomatoes and my husband loves roasted onions. could this be a match made in dinner heaven? ;-)

    If the weather holds out, maybe I’ll try to replicate this on the grill this weekend!

  15. We’re having friends over for dinner tonight and this is the PERFECT side. What would you (or anyone here) recommend doing as a main course meat to serve along side this – obviously taking a backseat to this star? :)

  16. I’m hoping I can find cipollinis here in Quebec because roasted veggies are one of my favorite things. Seriously, any qualms I have about certain foods can be alleviated if you roast them.

  17. You could put caramelized onions on anything and it’d be good, nevermind peak-season tomatoes. I made the tomato couscous for my son’s birthday party (along with roasted corn relish that is to die for), and it was a huge hit, despite the fact that I thought I undersalted it. I love the way those little pearls feel between your teeth. But that’s only because I’m crazy.

  18. Yes!! I am so glad you gave me another roasted dish to try. Those slow-roasted oven tomatoes of yours are one of my favorite things about summer now… I toss them with parm and oregano in pasta, put them on pizzas, make tomato pesto out of them. Now I HAVE to try these onions, too! Yaaay!

  19. Oh Deb this looks simply marvelous! I am going to have to see if I can track down cipollini onions somewhere. Delicious!
    LeilaMac- My first thought for a meat pairing would be a marinated tri-tip roast. I think beef would pair beautifully with Deb’s dish.

  20. Well, that’s supper sorted then. I’ve never actually cooked with cipollini before. They just aren’t that common in England, although they do occasionally make an appearance on the deli counter. (And this should be nice & healthy for my pre-New York fashion week diet!) LLGxx

  21. Kathleen

    How funny! I made a version of this two nights ago based on your previous roasted tomato post, chilled the little that was left of nearly TWO POUNDS of cherry tomatoes which, yes, I ate all by myself, overnight, and then put the cold ones on garlic-rubbed toast. Your blog is giving my cookery new life!

  22. I’ve been making a version of this dish since I read about it years ago on The Smitten. My fiance and I never tire of it. Thanks for the great presentation idea!

  23. My Oh My, does tis look wonderful! I don’t know who would devour it more quickly– me or my tomato-and-onion obsessed toddler!

    Here in Edinburgh, cipollini are nonexistent. Can I use wee pearl onions, or some nice seasonal shallots? Or just chop a big sweet onion?

  24. K. Golding

    Ok..have I been gone that long? I’m just getting back to work from maternity leave, and catching up on your site. Congratulations on the pregnancy! Yay!

  25. WOW! That sounds like some of my favorite flavors all tied into one dish. I love the simplicity of it. Now I jsut need to wait until the prefect tomatoes call out to me ;)

  26. Rhonda

    Going to have to hunt down more of those little onions…tomatoes and huge onions abound. Found the cutest little pears (4 bites-who knew) but the onions are a problem. Loved them in the balsamic sauce.

  27. The greatest divide between my adored husband and myself — greater than pizza crust thickness, greater than zucchini v. summer squash — is his dislike of cooked-down tomatoes and my INSANE ADDICTION to them. (Sorry to shout.) I am capable of making a tray of oven-dried and eating half of them when they come out of the oven. So this dish is my ideal… for a night when he is traveling.

  28. Every time I see that little “vegetarian” tag down at the bottom of one of your posts, I weep with joy. I’ve never tried these little onions but they seem like they’d be delicious.

  29. I’m so confused. Didn’t you already post about this? I have the old link bookmarked, but the post was removed? I even bought the ingredients to make it . . . this past weekend. Help?

  30. Ahh! We’re living at a hotel until we find a place to live in a new city and I am torturing myself reading your blog when I have no kitchen! That looks AMAZING. I love roasted veggies, and especially tomatoes. Yum.

  31. Susan

    I’ve made your oven roasted tomatoes frequently this summer. Last winter I made the balsamic cippolini’s and they are to die for, too. This combo is a natural, and with cannelini beans, oh, girl..I can’t wait to try it. Thanks, Deb.

  32. OMG Deb, you’ve got me drooling. Seriously, why so we forget that astoundingly delicious things can be made from just a few ingredients. I have got o get some pearly onions and small tomatoes (that’s the best I can get here – no fancy cipollini or cute little romas for me.

  33. Since it’s already early September, the tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market are indeed calling to me! I have always been SUPER plain about my roasted tomatoes (a la Nigel Slater Appetite), but this recipe, I think, will make me a believer (and I haven’t even tried the juices yet. :))

    I think adding the beans and toasted bread with a hint a garlic is a stroke of genius– a perfect transitional summer-to-fall meal.

    Thank you! So excited to make this tomorrow night!

  34. Michelle

    I think I need to give this a try…I for one am a fan of the raw tomato and only the raw tomato but this dish seems to be calling to me so after my trip to the market I am going to try to roast some tomatoes and give it a shot. This will be my weekend inspirational dinner :) Thanks for the inspiration!

  35. june2

    This looks surprisingly elegant! Also, have you tried the Rancho Gordo beans to see if they are actually better enough tasting to be worth the effort of cooking them? I’m curious what you think of them and it seems like this recipe is the perfect place for them.

  36. So;is

    I was just telling my daughter that I have not seen a recipe for roasted tomatoes. I made pans of multi kinds, colors and sized tomatoes. whatever is in the garden and just add course sea salt and olive oil. I uses this method to cook up my garden tomatoes for freezing. I seal-a-meal them skin and all. When I need then, I defrost a package, strain them in a large hole colander to remove the skin and use them for pasta sauce, salsas, soups stews, etc. Next time I will try them with the onions and may a few cloves of garlic. Try on fresh fettuccine pasta, so plain, so good! Plate of pasta with a shave of parmesan, simple green salad, baguette, and ,glass of red wine, Heaven.

  37. Oh my. So delicious. Cipollinis are kinda hard to find around here for some reason. They’re at the nicer groceries, but not farmer’s markets. I have seen a lot of little bitty sweet yellow onions at the farmer’s market though. And I never thought to blanch the onions to make them easier to peel. If only I’d known that when making Julia Child’s Coq au Vin, with the 40-50 pearl onions…geez. This looks like a heavenly dish.

  38. mmm I love roasted tomatoes. I did this in a big skillet earlier this summer with all different colored cherry tomatoes. Agree that with the cipollinis you want a larger variety, but man were they delish.

  39. I have seen chef’s use cipollini onions on Food Network, but I have never tried them because I don’t like an onion-y texture. But since you describe them and having a potato like texture, that may alleviate my fears. Oh, and with a balsamic glaze? I just bought four bottles of artisan balsamic vinegar and I have been looking for excuses to use them!

  40. jessica

    Made this last night-but added a splash of balsalmic, mixed it all together with some steamed baby spinach, white beans, fresh mozzerella. Holy cow-it ROCKED! Cant wait to eat leftovers later today!

  41. Rose

    This looks fabulously easy! My parents grew more tomatoes than they know what to do with, so they’ve been looking for new ways to eat them. I think I might visit them this weekend with this wonderful recipe!

  42. KT

    Oh man was this delish & easy. I used San Marzano tomatoes & it gave it an out of control amazing kick on flavor. I used Sour Batard for bread & fried egg ontop to make it a main meal….simply AMAZING meal! Thank you!

  43. Hi Deb, Since you’re such a fan of the roasted tomato, I thought I’d pass on one of my favorite things to do with Romas: cut them in half, toss with herbs (fresh, dried), red wine, olive oil, and minced garlic, and slow roast them in the oven all night long (culinary productivity while sleeping is an awesome feeling). Put the finished tomatoes in quart jars and stash them in your freezer. They are great in grilled cheese sandwiches, salads, pasta dishes, you name it…

    And, on another note, may your final days of pregnancy and the delivery itself go well for you!

  44. I made your cubed, hacked caprese salad in time for Labor Day weekend it was a smashing success! I wish I had made 2 batches, one for the party and one to keep! This reciepe looks equally yummy and I can’t wait for another chance to make it!

  45. This recipe looks TO DIE FOR!! I’m going to have to try it. The only thing I’m concerned about is the beans and the bread…we shall see. The beans do not get cooked??

  46. I think you actually did tell us about this a few years back. I know, because I have a tomato-splattered printout of it in the go-to recipe folder I keep in the kitchen. (although it doesn’t seem to be on the site anymore). Served over white beans, as you suggest back then, it makes a hearty meal (and it’s gluten-free, which has helped when throwing dinner parties with guests who can’t have gluten), and it’s become one of my favorite things. Thanks for introducing me to it!

  47. Mmmmmediterranian!

    I love this kind of simple summer dish, with a few distinct flavours, textures, and colours.

    It’s like a quiet, yet enrapturing conversation among a diverse group of people…but in food form.

    Thanks Deb!

  48. Kacie

    Wow, Deb. I made this for dinner last night, subbing caramelized shallots for the cippollini onions, and it may have been the cheapest, most devastatingly delicious meal we’ve ever tasted. THANK YOU!! My husband was crying tears of joy.

    1. deb

      Oscar — The blanching makes it easier to remove their skins. Because the onion is so small, if you peel too much, you’ll lose it. It allows you to slip off just the outer layer.

  49. Stephanie

    I just did this in a cast-iron on the grill the other night, but with cipollinis and fingerling potatoes. We do this regularly, summer and winter! Shitakes and potatoes and cipollinis are my favorite combo so far, but I’ll now have to add some tomatoes into the mix! YUM.
    And I’m totally with you on the juices. That nearly burnt, sweet-tart flavor of the tomato syrup that develops from roasting them actually tastes to me like the one meat-flavor I miss as a vegetarian! So satisfying… I don’t like tomato sauce on my pasta (I love tomato sauce… why bother with the pasta if you’ve got good stuff!), but I’ll happily roast chunks of tomato in the oven while sauteeing the veggies, then cut the ‘maters up with a spatula and pour it over, juice/oil/flesh.

  50. Your photos are magical. I love tomatoes and onions, but it’s the perfect, subtle light in each and every one of your photographs that keeps me coming back here. Thank you for the frequent inspiration.

  51. Janet

    I know you don’t endorse particular brands but do you have any recommendations or tips for bakeware? Dos and don’ts? Should I be worried about possible problems with materials like aluminum or signs of a good manufacturer? I’m building my first kitchen little by little and am finally upon cake pans and even possibly nice baking sheets. Thanks!

  52. Noah

    One option on the tomatoes is Juliet or Juliettes – I don’t think they’re the same as mini-Romas, but they look similar. They’re about 1-1.5 inches long and roast up (or oven-dry if you want to go further) great.

  53. Ana

    This was so delicious. I threw in a little thyme and oregano, because I had some around. I shared it with one friend and there were no leftovers, which was very sad the next day. Next time, I’ll refuse to share =)

  54. Fantastic! Was so inspired by this one we made it for dinner tonight…currently looking at two very clean plates. I used the tomatoes from my garden…small and round but a little larger than romas. I halved them. Our local market doesn’t carry cippolinis so I tried pearls instead. Thought it turned out amazing, but will try again with the cippolinis if I run across some. Loved the use of beans instead of pasta, much healthier and a great source of protein! Delish!!

  55. stephanie

    This was really tasty, we had to use pearl onions too but they worked out great. We pounded a couple of chicken breasts until they were thin and then poured the juices from the roasted tomatoes and onions over them at the end up cooking. soo tasty and then topped the chicken with loads of onions and tomatoes. next time i’d roast up garlic with them though

  56. Holy Cow this was delicious!! I served it on top of some roasted garlic bread I found at Whole Foods (and along side a mixed greens salad with lemon-Parmesan dressing) and it was divine. Perfect Sunday night food! Thanks so much for the recipe!

  57. racheld

    Converted. Amen and Hallelujah!!

    Your descriptions cause undertongue sensations akin to sniffing the French’s jar.

    This makes that lovely Smoked Turkey Divan with fresh-steamed broccoli and homemade bechamel I just made for dinner look as insipid as oatmeal.

    Tomorrow and tomorrow. Thank you.

  58. Christine

    I take the onions and tomatoes, toss them with equal parts olive oil and balsamic, roast them, and serve on spinach pasta. I am also the only one in my family who likes it, so it ALL GOES TO ME. Sigh!

  59. jade

    oh wow! i roasted the hell out of some heirloom tomatoes and cipollini (cut some big ones in half since i couldn’t find smaller ones), and it was delicious. probably should have juiced them beforehand since i had to keep pouring out the roasting pan, but it was so delicious. thanks!

  60. Molly Bham

    Made this per your directions except skipped the bread. Poured the tomatoes and onions over the beans and gave it a half-hearted stir. AMAZING. I have the pickiest eaters and they loved it.

  61. Amy

    I made this last night with farmer’s market produce and it was sooo good and sooo easy. Who knew so few ingredients could make such a delicious supper?

  62. Kristin

    This dish changed my life. It’s my go-to meal for company now! Sometimes I serve it with a pan-fried or grilled fish, but it’s just delightful on it’s own. It always gets rave reviews! Congrats on the new little guy, he’s beautiful :)

  63. MAP

    Another winner! I had a bunch of kale that I also roasted (in a separate pan so it crisped up) and threw that on top. Congrats on the new little one — can’t believe you still are keeping the recipes flowing :)

  64. You must have a crop of tomatoes like I’ve been getting? I just posted aroasted cherry tomato recipe lately but I LOVE the idea of adding cipollini’s in! I will SO be stealing this as I have a bowlful being picked every day! Thanks!

  65. Kelly

    So I’m a new reader to your blog, and although I realize a TON of people have commented on this already, I just had to share… I made this last night and my bf and I simply LOVED it!!!!!! I can’t wait to make it again… Thanks so much for sharing =)… anyone thinking of trying it – don’t hesitate – you can’t go wrong with this one!

    P.S. your baby is gorgeous!!

  66. kate

    I’ve made this a few times and I recommend roasting the vegetables separately. My tomatoes have always finished faster than my onions and I find myself fishing them out of the hot oven with tongs. Also, I like dressing the beans in a little olive oil and lemon juice.

  67. Annelise

    This was awesome. My tomatoes did cook a lot faster than my onions so it had more of an onion bite to it. Next time I might add more tomatoes to balance it out.

  68. Karen

    This is SO GOOD even with non-summer tomatoes. I found the last cipollini onions and picked out the best ones to give to a colleague that has heard me raving about this dish since you posted it this summer. I like the veggies cooked together — but like Kate above found that sometimes the tomatoes were ready before the onions. If you pick only small onions, it seems to solve the timing problem.

  69. Just made this for dinner tonight. I have been dying to try it out since you first posted it. OMG this was heaven! What took me so long! I Will be making this more often!

  70. Julia

    I just made this last night for dinner — absolute heaven. I added in some oyster mushrooms, which got beautifully caramelized in the tomato juices. This is sure to be a regular for us, with any variety of veggies, with pasta, rice, cous cous, or just as you wrote it. It’s amazing how something so simple can be just so satisfying.

  71. Joslyn

    So I know its been a while since you’ve posted this but I did the roast tomatoes and onion (added garlic) tonight and they disappeared in front of my eyes. ‘OMG’s’ all around the table. ;D
    Im making it again tomorrow so I can have some.. HA!

  72. Caitlin

    This was THE best thing I have ever eaten! Made it for dinner, took a picture of it, showed all my friends at work, and raved about the heavenliness of it : )

  73. Sarah

    We loved this – it took fewer than three bites before my significant other asked me to “add this to the rotation.” I couldn’t find cipollini onions, so just cut 2 small yellow onions into 6ths, keeping the root intact so the wedges stayed together pretty well. I still blanched them, even though the skins weren’t an issue, just to make sure they cooked in the same amount of time as the tomatoes. Also, used a colorful assortment of cherry/grape tomatoes because that’s what I had handy, and they worked just fine. I deglazed the pan with a little water and drizzled that over the top – juicier tomatoes probably don’t need this treatment. I will continue to search for cipollinis and eventually make the recipe as written, but substituting still yielded excellent results!

  74. Circe

    O-M-G!! I think I just found my new favorite dinner! Never would I have waited so long to make this had I’ve known just how darn good it is.

  75. eleonard

    I made this as a side last night. I doubled the tomatoes and onions to make it lighter (because it was going with meat and rice). Very easy and good. I’m wondering if a little acidity would round it out even better. Thanks for posting, as with everything else I’ve tried of yours, it was simple and delicious.

  76. Martha

    Just what I’m looking for to go along with the lamb for Easter next week. Easy to find these here in italy..can buy them in the market already peeled. Was going to prepare as agrodolce but I think I like this better with the pomodori.
    Now, let me go back and enjoy the rest of your site!

  77. Paula Sims

    I have been making this marvelous dish for 2 years. I would make it more often if there were a quicker way to peel the onions, or if I could buy them peeled. I see from your photo, though, that maybe I don’t need to be so fastidious in trimming the roots and stuff. I still make it even though I now eat grain-free and legume-free, and it is still delicious.

  78. I received your cookbook for Christmas and tore into it as soon as I could. I made this recipe last night, but didn’t use the bread. The tomatoes and onions were fantasticly sweet and roasty. But I think I missed something on the beans. They sere just there at the bottom of the bowl and didn’t add anything to the dish. Should I have done something to the beans first? Roasted them as well? Heat them up? Salt and pepper? I served this with halibut over wilted greens and the combination was wonderful! Your book is beautiful. Thanks!!

    1. deb

      Erin Hess — The beans usually end up “dressed” with those fantastic scrapings from the pan as well as the roasted tomato/onion itself. It’s possible that because you had other things on the plate, the dressing didn’t end up coating them as much.

  79. nancy

    After getting your cookbook for my birthday….I happened to run across cipollini onions at the farmers market and couldn’t resist. Amazing….I had to restrain myself from eating the whole pan! Next time, I’ll try to match the size of the onions and tomatoes (but it wasn’t a big deal to take the tomatoes out a bit early) and maybe even throw in some small potatoes. Wonderful recipe — thanks!

  80. Sallie

    Thank you so much for introducing me to the wonder of chipollini onions! How have I ever lived without them?! I received your book as a gift, and this recipe was just the solution I needed to using up the last of our summer crop of tomatoes (small caprese heirlooms and small plums tomatoes) and I swear this dish transported me back to a trip to Italy. Now I am just sad all our tomatoes are gone because I could eat this everyday. Thanks again for sharing this awesome recipe!

  81. Erin

    So, tomatoes are my favorite food, in all incarnations, and I’ve been dying to try this (I have your cookbook and have been reading the blog for about a year). By some miracle my (rural, Texas) garden is still spewing out large cherry tomatoes, but our (sad, rural) markets have never been graced by a cipolline onion. Can i use texas sweet onions here? pearls? would it still be a religious experience without those adorable onion disks?

    1. deb

      Erin — Other onions can be used, but may not roast up as buttery. Texas sweet onions are actually cippolini-esque, but of course, much larger; I might use them in wedges, but it can really take a long time to get roasted onion wedges tender and sweet. Tiny white ones can be roasted, but will probably retain a sharper flavor.

  82. Bryan

    My wife and I love to make this dish (in fact we just finished), but we also add a ton of garlic cloves to it as well so that you end up with these wonderful little nuggets of roasted garlic mixed in. We’ve also been known to toss in some hatch chilies pieces when they are in season.

  83. Diane

    Well, I know I am late to the party but let me add my raves for this recipe! I fixed it tonight exactly as written except I used little red pearl onions. I still can’t believe how delicious it was. I literally licked all the serving utensils before putting them in the dishwasher. Sorry, that was too much, right? My husband is a carnivore deluxe and he was totally impressed with this dish.

  84. I’m not sure what I did wrong here. The tomatoes and pan juices were delicious, but the cippolini just didn’t get tender (even after I roasted them for over an hour and increased the temperature). They’re edible, but I was hoping for something a lot softer and sweeter. Maybe they were a bit too large?

  85. Sara

    Oh my God. My husband is out of town at a conference, our three-year-old is tucked up in bed, and I made this tonight for my “mama’s night to herself” dinner, and….. holy crap, this is so good!

    Just one question: I made this in a roasting pan, with the ratios of ingredients in the recipe, and mine came out a little less brown/blistered and a little more liquidy. It was still absolutely delicious, but can you think of anything that might explain the difference?

    1. deb

      Sara — Did it have tall sides, i.e. like a roasting pan for meats? That could have been it. Or, it just needed more cooking time. Tomatoes will have varying juiciness, so it might have just taken longer to get them thickened and a little caramelized.

  86. Sara

    Ah–mystery solved. :)
    Yes, I made this in a roasting pan with fairly tall sides. So would you recommend making it next time in a shallow baking pan, and maybe allowing for more cooking time?

    By the way, I had some of the roasted tomato-cipollini-and-bean mixture left over after we’d eaten all the bread (sniffle), so I tossed it with cooked whole-wheat pasta and sprinkled some parmesan over the top. It was really good that way, too!

  87. deb

    Definitely, actually, either or both might help. Definitely use how the tomatoes appear as a guide, and I think you’ll get closer to what you see up top, and what we obsess over (still).

  88. Sara

    So, it’s now a few months later, and I just have to tell you that I’ve been making this at least a couple of times a month. It’s in the oven right now, and I have some goat cheese to spread over the bread before piling the tomato mixture on top and eating it like an open-faced sandwich. I’m unreasonably excited about this. :)

  89. stephanie

    made this last night for dinner, sort of. i had grabbed some steaks at whole foods that were on sale without thinking, and then when i got home realized that frankly, they weren’t that great. so i made the tomatoes & onions to go on top of them and they totally saved my dinner. i bought the cipollini, and for the tomatoes i used a box of starting-to-wrinkle-better-use-these-up-asap grape tomatoes, as well as a new box of “cabernet” tomatoes. (cherry tomato in size and shape, kumato-esque in color and flavor.) i also threw on a few garlic cloves, and when it was all done tossed it with some basil from my windowsill.

    what didn’t go on the steak i sopped up with some toasted rolls. i couldn’t stop eating it! i’m going to use the little bit left over like sara mentioned above (thank you!) as i have some left over goat cheese hanging around too.

    two things about this though –
    1. i didn’t like the mixture on its own, because the texture of the tomato skins that separated from their delicious insides was distracting and sometimes unpleasant, but with the steak or bread it was unnoticeable. maybe a different type of tomato next time would result in more tender skins?
    2. i wanted so badly to cover my sheet pan in foil but was afraid to because tomatoes and foil don’t mix. but could i have? the pan was kind of a bitch to clean afterwards. (as people say, “i am the dishwasher.”)

  90. deb

    stephanie — Tomatoes and foil aren’t the best mix, but I’ve done it. How about foil then parchment on top? Re, the skins, it miiight have just been the tomatoes — I know the ones I get from the grocery stores in winter have thicker skin, better to ship and keep longer.

  91. Paula

    Love this recipe, have been making it for years, though I have to make it without the beans or bread- just the onions and tomatoes. I would make it every day if I didn’t have to blanch and peel the onions. I see from your photos, though, that I don’t have to be fastidious and trim all the root and tip. I once found peeled cipollinis at Shop-Rite. I have also added sun-dried tomatoes 50-50.

  92. Mollybda

    Made this last night and it was brilliant. Also made, at the same time, the pasta with charred eggplant. I was so excited by the tomatoes that I 1/over toasted the walnuts, had to start over, 2/didn’t read the instructions properly and threw all the dressing ingredients into the processor at once and 3/burned, not charred, the eggplant. Sigh. It was sheer desperation that inspired me to throw the extra tomatoes and cipollinis into the pasta thus mitigating the burned eggplant effect and oh, my, it was simply genius! I actually ate the rest for breakfast. Thanking you for both recipes; in the future, I may always have to combine the two!

  93. Penny

    Oh, Deb – this is going to be a keeper! I’m right now staring at a clean plate, and wishing I’d made more :-) I added a dash of harissa spices, just because. I didn’t serve with beans – didn’t have any – not with bread (as I’d had two slices of my homemade this morning!) so I had it over couscous. Ohhhh that so worked.

    Cherry tomatoes and shallot onions will be on my next shopping list! And I shall definitely try it with bread next time, as that’s one of my downfalls – the combination will be unstoppable!

    Thanks sooo much for sharing.

    All best,

    Penny x

  94. Kelli

    I made this with full-sized roma tomatoes and regular yellow onions, and it was still delicious. I just chopped both into smaller pieces, spread them in a single layer on the pan, and roasted them until they seemed done. The final product was a little intimidating for my toddler to eat, so I pulsed it a few times in the food processor. Not the same glamour factor, but awesome nevertheless. This recipe is too delicious and simple to be reserved only for the fancy tomatoes and onions; it’s worth making even if you can only find the regular ones. :)

  95. Laurie Lindop

    This dish hit all the marks for a weeknight dinner — easy, cheap, and even faster than written. I spent the entire veg baking period at the neighbor’s house helping her figure out which paint swatch was a nicer shade of beige. And then came home, grabbed roasted vegs and threw it together. It then hit another mark that I wasn’t quite expecting; it was absolutely delicious. Thanks! I don’t cook a dish more than once, but if I changed my stubborn pattern on this matter, it might be one to redo when running late and can find cipollini onions!

  96. BrittanyW

    Hi Deb,
    Where do you find cipollini? I can’t seem to find them at the grocery stores in Maine. Maybe it just isn’t the right time of year?