This easy sandwich recipe can be yours in just 10 minutes. Caprese Sandwiches are a dreamy summer lunch idea; perfect for potlucks and picnics. The basil pesto aioli beautifully echoes the fresh basil leaves, making this one of the best summer sandwich recipes I've ever eaten.
In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, pesto, lemon juice, and garlic. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
To assemble the sandwiches:
Brush cut sides of ciabatta rolls with olive oil (I use about 1 tablespoon per half). In a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, and working in batches, place the ciabatta halves cut-side down and toast until golden brown, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Spread pesto aioli on both sides of the toasted rolls. Add 1/4 cup arugula to each sandwich. Add a layer of mozzarella slices, followed by tomato slices.
Top each roll with 4 to 5 basil leaves. Drizzle balsamic over tomatoes, if desired, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Basil pesto: Store-bought pesto is fine, or you can make homemade pesto.
Ciabatta rolls: The dense, sturdy texture of bread stands up well to the rest of the Caprese Sandwich ingredients. If you can't find or don't love ciabatta, try portions of baguette, focaccia, or thick slices of sourdough boule.
Arugula: The peppery kick of these leafy greens plays nicely with the sweet tomatoes and salty mozzarella. If you prefer something a little milder, opt for spinach.
Fresh basil: Seek out lively, firm leaves without brownish spots, discolorations, or holes.
Yield: My Caprese Sandwich recipe creates 6 vegetarian sandwiches; perfect for a satisfying lunch or light dinner. For heartier appetites, consider stacking on some shredded or thinly-sliced leftover or rotisserie chicken.
Make ahead: Store sliced tomatoes and mozzarella separately in the refrigerator, then build the Caprese Sandwiches just prior to serving.
Storage: These Caprese Sandwiches are best enjoyed immediately after assembly. Wrap leftover sandwiches with plastic wrap or transfer to an airtight container, store in refrigerator 2 to 3 days.