If you're looking for an easy, delicious homemade vegan Caprese sandwich to make in under ten minutes, look no further than the classic Caprese, updated.
This vegan version of the Italian classic is tantalizing - think layers of creamy vegan mozzarella cheese, fresh tomato slices, vegan basil pesto, sweet balsamic glaze, and a delightful hint of peppery arugula.
With just a few simple ingredients, you can whip up this tasty sandwich in less time than it takes to order delivery. Your vegan Caprese awaits!
Are you looking for a quick, easy lunch or dinner to whip up on busy days? Look no further because this Vegan Caprese Sandwich will surely be your new favorite sandwich!
Nothing beats the classic combination of tomato, fresh arugula, and vegan mozzarella - but in this version of the beloved Italian-inspired sandwich, all of these components are plant-based.
With just a few simple ingredients like freshly baked bread, pesto sauce, ripe Heirloom tomatoes, and vegan mozzarella that can be bought from your local supermarket or health food store - it's super straightforward to make at home!
To make this sandwich simple and quick, I chose not to make vegan mozzarella since this requires planning and time. However, where I live, it's easy to purchase vegan mozzarella.
If you want something delicious that won't take too long to get on the table, read my step-by-step guide on preparing this delightful twist on an Italian classic.
Another delicious sandwich that's quick to make and perfect to make ahead for busy days is this Tofu Salad Sandwich.
Here are the essential ingredients to make this delicious vegan Caprese sandwich. Multiply the ingredients to make multiple Caprese sandwiches.
The key elements of these ingredients are freshness and quality. Choose the best quality fresh produce at the local farmer's market and quality pantry ingredients at the grocery store.
This is the time to use your best quality extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, or balsamic glaze.
- Bread - I love sliced ciabatta or focaccia for this recipe or sliced ciabatta rolls. When I photographed this recipe, I purchased a massive loaf of ciabatta from a local bakery. I've seen ciabatta rolls perfectly sized for sandwiches in a bag at Costco; check their fresh bread section.
- Vegan pesto - I love making my homemade pesto recipes, such as this vegan basil pesto with pine nuts or walnut pesto, since we grow basil in our patio garden. Otherwise, a store-bought vegan pesto is convenient, and I keep one in the pantry year-round when I don't have fresh pesto on hand. I like the brand Seggiano, which is vegan.
- Arugula - I love the peppery bite of arugula in this sandwich. I used baby arugula, which is milder with a slightly less intense flavor.
- Vegan mozzarella - I used Miyoko's, crafted from organic cultured cashew milk and natural ingredients. I love the creamy texture and mild flavor. If you can't find it or something comparable, check out my substitutions below. I prefer a fresh mozzarella type of vegan cheese rather than shredded cheese.
- Tomatoes - Organic tomatoes on the vine or organic heirloom tomatoes at peak ripeness make all the difference in this sandwich.
- Balsamic vinegar - I use barrel-aged, dense balsamic vinegar for this recipe. The consistency is almost like a balsamic glaze, and the taste and texture are perfect in this sandwich.
- Extra virgin olive oil - I recommend using your favorite fruity, high-quality extra virgin olive oil.
- Sea salt - I used finishing sea salt flakes. You can use pink salt or fine sea salt instead. I don't recommend table salt since it has additives such as anticaking agents, and the flavor doesn't compare to sea salt.
See the recipe card for quantities.
How to make this homemade Vegan Caprese Sandwich Recipe with Pesto
It's quick and easy to make this vegan Caprese sandwich recipe. The amount of vegan pesto, vegan mozzarella, and tomato slices depends on the size of your bread. The bigger the slice, the more ingredients you need.
Spread vegan pesto on a slice of bread such as ciabatta or focaccia.
Place the baby arugula on top of the slice of bread with pesto.
Layer mozzarella slices. Drizzle the olive oil on top and add sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with the balsamic vinegar or glaze of your choice.
Cut the tomato into ¼-inch to ½-inch slices. Place the tomato slices on top and add a sprinkle of coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper on the tomato slices.
Hint: Choose a tomato similar in width to your bread; an heirloom tomato is great.
Here are some alternatives if you can't find some ingredients for this vegan Caprese sandwich recipe.
- Arugula - instead of baby arugula or regular arugula, you can use romaine lettuce, spinach, fresh basil leaves, or any lettuce mix.
- Bread - use gluten-free bread instead of ciabatta to make this gluten-free.
- Vegan mozzarella - the vegan mozzarella can be replaced with slices of extra-firm tofu; season the slices of tofu with sea salt, pepper, and dried Italian oregano.
- Tomatoes - use roasted bell pepper instead.
- Balsamic vinegar of Modena or balsamic glaze - you can make balsamic glaze if you can't find a concentrated balsamic vinegar from Modena or a balsamic glaze that is tart and a little sweet.
Here are some variations you can try when you make this simple sandwich:
- Spicy - add crushed Calabrian pepper chili paste and use regular arugula instead of baby arugula.
- Deluxe - add sun-dried tomatoes from the jar for extra flavor.
- Kid-friendly - add mild guacamole instead of pesto.
- Open-faced sandwich - make an open-faced sandwich and skip the bread on top. It will be messy, although delicious!
- Gluten-free - use gluten-free bread to make this sandwich gluten-free.
- Vegan Caprese Panini - Use a panini press if you have one and cook for several minutes on medium heat until the bread is toasted and the cheese starts to melt. Alternatively, place the sandwich in a small saucepan, frying pan, or cast iron pan, heated on medium heat. Heat on each side for a few minutes, and carefully flip the sandwich over with a heatproof spatula. Cut the sandwich in half and then serve.
You need minimal equipment to make this vegan sandwich.
- Cutting board
- Chef's knife
If you make this for a work lunch, store the wet ingredients (arugula, tomato, pesto, vegan mozzarella, balsamic vinegar) in the fridge separately from the dry ingredients (bread), and combine them when ready. Suitable for 2-3 days in the fridge.
If you can't finish your sandwich, refrigerate the leftovers in an airtight container overnight.
Do not freeze this sandwich.
The key to the best vegan Caprese sandwich is fresh, high-quality ingredients and ripe tomatoes in season.
If you make this recipe, please take a moment to ★★★★★ star-rate it and leave a comment below. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook, and share your creation with me! Tag me @resplendentkitchen and hashtag #resplendentkitchenrecipes.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
These are my favorite dishes to serve with this Vegan Caprese Sandwich:
Homemade Vegan Caprese Sandwich Recipe with Pesto
- 2 slices Italian bread ciabatta, focaccia, or a sliced ciabatta roll
- 1 tablespoon vegan pesto
- ½ cup baby arugula leaves or arugula, spinach, or romaine lettuce
- Slices of vegan mozzarella I like Miyoko's; use enough to cover the slice of bread; approximately 2 oz
- 1 teaspoon fruity extra virgin olive oil
- Pinch Coarse sea salt or pink salt
- Black pepper, freshly ground
- 1 teaspoon balsamic glaze or reduced balsamic vinegar
- Slices of ripe tomato, ¼-inch to ½-inch thick such as heirloom of on the vine tomatoes, 2 to 3 slices of tomato
- Spread vegan pesto on a slice of bread. Place arugula on top.2 slices Italian bread, 1 tablespoon vegan pesto, ½ cup baby arugula leaves
- Layer mozzarella slices. Drizzle the olive oil on top and add sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar or balsamic glaze.Slices of vegan mozzarella, 1 teaspoon fruity extra virgin olive oil, Pinch Coarse sea salt, Black pepper, freshly ground, 1 teaspoon balsamic glaze or reduced balsamic vinegar
- Place the tomato slices on top and add a sprinkle of salt and pepper on the tomato. Add another slice of bread on top and enjoy!Slices of ripe tomato, ¼-inch to ½-inch thick
- Choose a tomato similar in width to your bread; an heirloom tomato is great.
- Make the best vegan Caprese sandwich with fresh, high-quality ingredients and ripe tomatoes in season.
- Refrigerate the leftovers in an airtight container overnight.
Resplendent Kitchen offers nutritional information for recipes contained on this site as a courtesy. Although resplendentkitchen.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information from online calculators, these figures are estimates.