Less-Than-Perfect Roasted Tomatoes with Za’atar

Less-Than-Perfect Roasted Tomatoes with Za’atar

Tomatoes suck in the winter. That’s just a fact of life. But, I’d like to let you in on a secret: winter tomatoes don’t necessarily have to taste less delicious, juicy, and flavourful than those perfect summer tomatoes we’ve been dreaming about for the past 7 months!


Slowly roasting less-than-perfect tomatoes in olive oil and herbs is the secret to turning even the saddest pale, bland winter tomatoes into the most fabulous puddle of tomato flavour that you’ll want to eat on everything.


I usually order a pint of cherry tomatoes in my Organic Box every week, even throughout the winter. The tomatoes from the Organic Box are so incredibly delicious and full of flavour all year round. The summer ones are better than the winter ones, obviously, but every pint I get honestly taste sweet, just like candy. And this is coming from a girl who grew up despising raw tomatoes! Thank you organic farmers! This week, there was a little sticker on the carton letting me know that the tomatoes were less-than-perfect, so I hadn’t even been charged for them. Um, can I just take a moment to express my love for the Organic Box once again please! Not because they give me free food, but because they actually truly carabout food quality, and about their customers experience.

So whatever your current tomato situation, I highly recommend turning your oven on and trying out this super simple recipe. The result is fabulous for scooping onto crusty bread, tossing into pasta, smearing onto sandwiches, topping your eggs, stirring into hummus or plain yogurt for a dip, or as an addition to a charcuterie board or appetizer platter.



Slow Roasted Tomatoes with Olive Oil & Za-tar

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Author Brooke McMillan


  • 2 pints cherry or grape tomatoes (2 pints might seem like a lot, but trust me you'll want lots!)
  • 4 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 Tablespoons za'atar*
  • 1-2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 275°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Slice the tomatoes in half and add them to a large bowl with the olive oil, za'atar, sea salt, and black pepper. Stir to coat the tomatoes.

  3. Transfer the tomatoes onto the prepared baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 2-3 hours, until the tomatoes are very soft and fragrant. 

  4. Use immediately, or scoop the tomatoes and any accumulated juices into an airtight container or glass jar. Store in the refrigerator and serve cold, room temperature, or warm. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

*Za'atar is the name for the Middle Eastern spice blend made of dried thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac. There are many different variations from different countries and regions that may include other spices in the mixture as well. They are all delicious so just use whatever variety you can find!

*This recipe was inspired by the Lebanese cookbook Rose Water & Orange Blossoms by Maureen Abood.



If you’re interested in learning more about The Organic Box I mentioned, check out my feature post here. You can create an account and start creating your very first box on The Organic Box website HERE! Using the code BESTDEALS will give every new member $25 off a first order of $50 or more (that’s 50% off of one box!), and every new member that is referred will also get a great gift from from Danny himself. If you’d like to mention that I referred you during the sign-up process, then I get a $20 referral credit towards my future orders – which you are will also be eligible for too for anyone you refer. If you have any questions at all or would like some recommendations for what to order, then I’d be happy to help if you just shoot me an e-mail.

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