The BLT is a classic American sandwich that is made with bacon, lettuce and tomato.
It is a simple sandwich, but it can be made even better with the right tomatoes.
In this article, we will discuss some of the best tomatoes for BLTs (and even discuss the best cheeses and lettuce for BLT as well).
We will also provide tips on how to choose and prepare the perfect tomatoes for your sandwich.
Do Tomatoes Go On Sandwiches?
When it comes to crafting the perfect sandwich, there seems to be an unspoken rule – tomatoes are a must-have.
But why is it that we love to tuck slices of this vibrant red fruit in between our bread?
That’s because they represent an epitome of fresh flavors.
Tomatoes usually contribute juiciness to the entire setup and somehow create a marvelous combo with various ingredients in the sandwich especially that glossy smear of mayonnaise and generous sprinkle of salt and pepper.
What Variety Of Tomato Is Best For BLT Sandwich?
Deciding on the perfect tomato for sandwich may seem simple, but truth be told, not all tomatoes make the cut equal.
Tomatoes offer a wide variety in size, shape, color and flavor profiles.
Depending on their unique characteristics and taste, some tomatoes just shine brighter in certain dishes.
Among them we find those that are juicier and high in acidity, while others might be firmer with a sweet undertone.
Some tomatoes come packed with seeds and pulp; others are less so.
Some are a regular at your local grocery store, while others might lean more towards the exotic and expensive side.
The big question is: which tomato truly rules the BLT kingdom?
While personal preference does play its role as everyone has their own idea of the ideal BLT tomato, common consensus leans towards one that is large enough to be sliced easily, juicy yet meaty with a harmonious balance between sweet and acidic flavors.
It should hold well together without making your sandwich a soggy mess.
With these criteria in mind, consider these top contenders for your BLT:
Also known as plum tomatoes due to their oval shape, Roma tomatoes are red with fewer seeds and lower juice content than other varieties.
Their sweet yet meaty flavor profile makes them an excellent addition to any BLT sandwich.
Plus point – they’re easy to find and budget-friendly.
These small spherical wonders come in an array of colors including red, yellow, orange and purple adding both taste and aesthetics to your dish.
They are on the sweeter side but deliver a delightful tangy punch that enhances the freshness quotient of any BLT sandwich.
These large round tomatoes come with a higher seed and juice content making them rich in flavor which perfectly complements the bacon’s saltiness and mayo’s creaminess in a classic BLT sandwich.
That said, other types of tomatoes can also steal the show depending on individual preferences.
The cardinal rule though is this: ensure whatever variety you select is ripe yet firm with an inviting deep color indicative of its rich taste profile awaiting to make your BLT an unforgettable feast.
What Is The Best Heirloom Tomato For BLT Sandwich?
When it comes to the classic BLT sandwich, heirloom tomatoes deliver a wave of freshness that blends perfectly with the bacon-lettuce-mayo trio.
Let’s walk through some of the best Heirloom tomato contenders for your BLT:
- Paul Robeson: A notch smaller than a beefsteak tomato, yet meaty and juicy with a sweet tanginess that makes it an ideal companion for your BLT.
- Black Krim: Dare to be different? This dark-hued tomato offers a rich sweetness that instantly adds oomph to your sandwich.
- Mortgage Lifter: A legendary name in the heirloom tomato sphere. Recognizable by its beefsteak-style appearance and substantial size – occasionally weighing over a pound! Its pinkish-red hues give way to a sweet, meaty flavor beloved by many a BLT lover.
- Maglia Rosa: Wrapped in pink skin and bursting with sweet-tangy flavor. Want that classic heirloom touch? Go for Maglia Rosa!
- Green Zebra: Boasting green-striped exterior encasing yellow insides, Green Zebra lends not just sweetness but also subtle tartness and crunch – adding a delightful twist to your sandwich.
- Brandywine: Another popular choice among the beefsteak clan. Its smooth creamy texture beautifully complements its complex flavor profile. High on juices but beware of squishing!
- Cherokee Purple: This unique purple beauty brings smoky sweetness and firm texture to your plate while its fine balance of acidity enhances other ingredients in your BLT.
How Do You Cut Tomatoes For Sandwiches?
When it comes to creating that perfect sandwich, believe it or not, there’s an art to slicing tomatoes.
To get those neat, firm slices that won’t turn your bread into a soggy mess, a serrated knife should be your tool of choice.
Here’s how to master the craft:
Position your tomato sideways with the stem end aligned to either left or right based on your dominant hand – right if you’re right-handed, left if you’re left-handed.
Start off by slicing a small section parallel to the stem and top of the tomato. This helps in getting rid of the inedible stem part.
Now simply continue making parallel cuts down towards the bottom of the tomato.
The thickness of these slices is purely up to personal preference and can range from wafer-thin delicateness to robust meaty cuts.
What Goes Best With BLT?
Looking for the ideal accompaniment to your classic BLT?
Here are some foolproof recommendations that will elevate your sandwich experience:
Crunchy, salty potato chips offer a textural contrast to the creamy and savoury BLT.
From classic plain to barbecue, cheese or sour cream and onion, there’s a wide array to choose from.
Alternatively, homemade air-fried potato chips could be a healthier version.
What better way to compliment the tomato in your sandwich than with a comforting bowl of tomato soup?
Canned or homemade, adding some cream, fresh basil or cheese can amplify the flavors even more.
For a real treat, dip your sandwich right into the soup.
A refreshing side of coleslaw provides a colorful crunch alongside your sandwich.
Use traditional ingredients such as cabbage and carrots tossed in a dressing of mayo, vinegar, sugar with salt and pepper or opt for a healthier Greek yogurt-based dressing
Beef Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers
For bacon enthusiasts who appreciate a little heat in their meal – these cream cheese stuffed jalapenos wrapped in crispy bacon are just the thing.
They add an interesting flavor dynamic and are especially perfect if sharing is on the menu.
Crispy onion rings (a.k.a frizzled onions) are another snack that beautifully harmonizes with BLTs .
Whether you prefer conventional or gluten-free batter, deep-fried or baked – pair them with ketchup, ranch sauce or aioli for an extra burst of flavor.
Balance out your meal with some natural sweetness from a fruit bowl filled with oranges, grapefruits, pomegranates, pears, bananas – any favorite fruits of your liking and maybe topped off with cream or yogurt for that creamy surprise!
Best Lettuce For BLT
Lettuce plays an essential role in a classic BLT sandwich, providing that crunchy texture we all love.
But with so many varieties, which one should you choose?
Here are some top contenders:
Arguably the most common choice for BLTs, iceberg lettuce is loved for its crisp, cold and refreshingly clean taste – a perfect contrasting crunch to the hot bacon and juicy tomato.
A slightly more tender alternative to iceberg, romaine lettuce has a stronger flavor profile along with added nutritional value providing vitamins A and K as well as folate.
Belonging to the butterhead family, Bibb lettuce offers sweet, tender leaves that bring a touch more flavor into your sandwich compared to classic iceberg.
If you’re seeking a little punch in your sandwich, arugula with its spicy-peppery notes will do just the trick while also packing in healthful benefits such as antioxidants, vitamin C and calcium.
Boston lettuce bears similarity to bibb lettuce both being from the butterhead variety. This lettuce’s flavor can take your traditional BLT up a notch.
Each of these lettuce varieties brings its own unique texture and taste to complement the bacon-tomato duo – so go ahead and experiment till you find your favorite match!”
Best Cheese For BLT
Cheese in a BLT? Why not!
Though not traditional, adding cheese to this iconic sandwich can elevate the flavor profile.
But with so many types of cheese available, which one should you pick?
Here are some top contenders:
Probably the most common choice for a BLT-add on – its smooth texture and mild tanginess blend seamlessly with your sandwich. Plus, it melts wonderfully giving your sandwich a creamy richness.
With its semi-hard texture and signature nutty-caramel notes, Gouda offers an extra kick that can really make your BLT stand out.
Swiss cheese is known for its firm yet elastic texture and mildly sweet flavor that contrasts beautifully with the savory ingredients of a BLT. Its unique holes add a fun element to your sandwich while also providing a good dose of calcium and protein.
This semi-hard Italian cheese is renowned for its smooth chewy feel and mild buttery taste – smoked or unsmoked, it adds an interesting smoky savouriness to your meal.
If you’re seeking to add more punch to your sandwich, sharp cheddar doesn’t disappoint! With its full-bodied flavor and excellent melting properties – cheddar can bind all ingredients together into one cohesive snack.
If you’re unsure where to start from – give American cheese a shot; it’s versatile, easy to melt, and unlikely overtake other flavors in your sandwich due to its mildness.
If adventurous palates call – go ahead and experiment with cheeses like Cheddar, Swiss, Provolone or Gouda!