Tomato and Fennel Salad | Karen’s Kitchen Stories

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This tomato and Fennel Salad is light and refreshing, and simply elegant. 

Tomato and Fennel Salad

This tomato and fennel salad is lightly dressed in a mixture of olive oil, orange juice, and cider vinegar, and garnished with orange zest and fennel fronds.

Serve this tomato salad at an elegant outdoor summer soirée. It’s juicy, flavorful, and makes the most of summer’s fresh farmer’s market tomatoes.

In the summer, I’m always drawn to tomato salads, like this Greek Style Watermelon and Tomato Salad (it’s so delicious!) and this Spicy Tomato and Corn Salad. It’s hard to beat the deliciousness of a perfectly ripe tomato.

This tomato and Fennel Salad is light and refreshing, and simply elegant.

What kind of tomatoes should you use in this salad?

It depends on the time of year. In the summer, if you have farmers markets in your area, any fresh locally grown tomato will be tasty. A variety of different colored heirloom tomatoes would also be delicious and gorgeous. 

In the supermarket, the Campari tomatoes are really red and juicy right now, so I combined them with  some gorgeous and sweet orange grape tomatoes. 

In the off season, I’m always drawn to the baskets of cherry tomatoes and their other small cousins. I might use a combination of halved cherry tomatoes, sun golds, orange grape, and yellow pear tomatoes. The small snacking tomatoes seem to always be juicy and flavorful. 

Fresh tomato and fennel salad

How to make this tomato salad:

Depending on the size of the tomatoes, cut them into wedges, removing the core if necessary. 

Next, you thinly slice a small fennel bulb and separate the pieces. Reserve some of the fennel fronds to garnish the salad. 

Finally, you add olive oil, orange zest, orange juice, cider vinegar, salt, and pepper to the tomatoes and fennel and toss the ingredients together. That’s it! Easy, elegant, and delicious, and very few dishes to wash. 

Secret Ingredient Alert: 

For the orange juice in the recipe, I substituted Trader Joe’s tangerine juice. If your Trader Joe’s carries it and you haven’t tried it, you must. It’s freshly squeezed orange juice on flavor steroids. It also makes amazing mimosas. 

What to do with leftovers?

Cover any leftovers and refrigerate. Remove the salad from the refrigerator about 30 to 45 minutes before serving to so that the olive oil will liquefy (it solidifies a bit in the fridge). While not as pretty as when the salad is freshly assembled, the leftovers were pretty tasty for lunch for a couple of days. 

Bottom line? I’m pretty sure you’ll love this salad. 

Welcome to Progressive Eats, our virtual version of a Progressive Dinner Party. This month’s theme is all about an elegant summer evening celebration, and our host is Barb who blogs at Creative Culinary.

This event is celebrating five years of bringing together great cooks, concepts, and especially great food through the collaboration of Progressive Eats.

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a progressive dinner involves going from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats it’s a virtual party. A theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out. Come along and see all of the deliciousness we’ve put together for our celebration inspired dishes!

Elegant Summer Evening Soiree!




Main Courses

Side Dish


Fresh tomato and fennel salad with olive oil and orange juice dressing

Tomato and Fennel Salad Recipe

Yield: 6 to 8 servings


This tomato and Fennel Salad is elegant, light, and refreshing.


  • 1 1/2 pounds juicy tomatoes (see note in post about the tomatoes to use) 
  • 1 small fennel bulb
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Zest of half an orange
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Reserved fennel fronds for garnish


How to make Tomato and Fennel Salad Recipe

  1. Depending on the tomatoes you use, cut the tomatoes into wedges, removing the cores if using larger tomatoes. 
  2. Cut off the top of the fennel and save some of the fronds for garnish. 
  3. Halve and then thinly slice the fennel bulb with a knife or a mandoline. Separate the pieces. 
  4. Add the tomatoes and fennel to a bowl and add the olive oil, zest, orange juice, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine. 
  5. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste. 
  6. Garnish with a few fennel fronds and serve.

Karen’s Kitchen Stories

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