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Italian caprese salad party skewers have to be the best invention ever! First off, caprese salad is an Italian classic recipe and are often served to family and friends at gatherings during the warm summer months.
In this version of the recipe, we’ve made a few minor alterations by serving the salad ingredients (mozzarella, tomatoes, basil) on skewers to accommodate easy serving and portioning at parties, and because well, it’s just a pretty cool and creative way to present them!
In this article, I explain the various simple ingredients, a few tips to make it easy and learning from my own mistakes, plus a video so you see it first hand and know exactly what to do.
You’ll need the following ingredients:
- Fresh mozzarella balls (be careful if you use marinated as they will drip)
- Fresh basil leaves
- Whole cherry or grape tomatoes
- Small skewers (these can be purchased online, very affordable)
Simply alternate the ingredients in order on the skewer, I would always end with either a mozzarella ball or a tomato, not the basil.
A typical caprese salad will use a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic. But we certainly don’t want to drizzle any oil or vinegar on the skewers themselves b/c they would create a massive mess for your guests.
What I recommend is having the oil and vinegar available separately on table so if people want to use them for dipping or however, they can.
What Type of Skewers to Use
In my video below you’ll see that I am using wood skewers, but while they worked fine, my husband when grabbing one got a sliver of the wood in his hand. So we went online and ordered some metal 7” skewers which I now wish I had used in the video because they are perfect!
So if you choose to do this recipe, I recommend looking at your local store or online for the stainless steel skewers which are pretty cool.
How many skewers per person is appropriate for a party?
As with any party or group gathering, figuring out food quantity is critical. So let’s first figure out how many items are required per skewer.
The skewers I used are about 7”. Each skewer holds:
- 3 small mozzarella balls
- 3 grape/cherry tomatoes
- 5 basil leaves
I would allow for a min. of 2 skewers per adult and 1 skewer per child.
For 10 adults:
- 30 small mozzarella balls
- 30 grape/cherry tomatoes
- 50 basil leaves
And you can do the math from here…
Making the caprese salad skewers ahead of time
I would not make caprese salad skewers too far in advance, such as the previous day. The reason for this is because of the basil leaves which you place between the cheese and the tomatoes. Basil leaves like any herb require water to stay fresh once they are cut from the stem/branch.
So Skewing them and expecting them to keep their fresh look and not wilt isn’t realistic unfortunately.
However, the good news is that they are very quick and easy to make, so preparing them a few hours at most should be fine.
What if you don’t have cherry/grape tomatoes?
If you find yourself in a jam and without any cherry or grape tomatoes, it will be hard to cut tomatoes in a way to enable you to skew them. So I’d have to just be blunt and say maybe wait till you have some skewable tomatoes to use the recipe.
Caprese Salad Party Skewers
This caprese salad skewers recipe is so easy and simple to make, and it is perfect for using at parties. The fresh mozzarella balls, tomatoes and fresh basil are perfect for a refreshing Italian salad served with the utmost convenience for you and guests!
- 36 small fresh mozzarella balls
- 36 whole cherry/grape tomatoes
- 60 fresh basil leaves if you have fresh basil plants finding 60 leaves is not as much as you would think! You can also simply use fewer basil leaves.
- 12 skewers 2 skewers per person
- extra virgin olive oil served separately
- balsamic vinegar served separately
Start by placing a mozzarella ball on the skewer and slide to the end of the skewer
Fold a basil leaf in half or in thirds and slide that onto the skewer so the skewer holds it in place
Add the tomato (grape or cherry) and slide that next to the basil leaf
Fold another basil leaf in half in and slide on the skewer
Repeat steps 1-4 two more times, ending with a tomato
Set aside and repeat with the next skewer.
Serve on a large platter with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar available separately.
How to serve the skewers for your guests?
If you’re going to serve these at a party, I’d recommend serving them no different than if you were to serve them kabobs. Allow the guests to pick up their own skewers from a large platter and then they can take the skewer and place on their own plate.
The balls of cheese and tomatoes and basil slide easily off the skewers and this allows the guest to then add any olive oil and vinegar they wish to their salad based on their own preference.
What other ingredients can be used on the skewers?
As the saying goes, rules are meant to be broken, so the same goes for many recipes. Feel free to be creative by adding in additional ingredients, but I would stick to those commonly found with Italian fresh salads such as antipasto.
Here are some ideas:
- Pitted olives
- Various cheeses (cubed)
- Meats such as prucciuto, salami, pepperoni.
If you do modify it, don’t call it a caprese salad however, it’s more like antipasto on skewers at this point. 😊