Italian-Inspired Heirloom Tomato Pie with the Best Flaky Paleo Crust

If you hang out on my Instagram, you’ll see I LOVE tomatoes! What I don’t love is baking, especially pies. So even though I love the idea of the Southern classic tomato pie, it’s not happening at my house. Crostatas, an Italian “pie” made freeform is my cheat. This Heirloom Tomato Pie is really a Crostata and celebrates the beautiful colors of summer’s best tomatoes.

What is A Tomato Pie?

The classic Southern tomato pie I grew up eating was a standard pie crust filled with a cheesy mixture and topped with sliced tomatoes. Typically it is made in a standard pie plate. It’s quite good, but when I’m 100% gluten free and 90% dairy free, it’s not for me anymore. Plus as already stated, me and pie-making are not friends. (Admittedly, I make one pie a year…Brown Butter Pecan Pie because it’s dang good and you can’t make it into a crostata without a giant mess. I haven’t posted it yet…stay tuned, though. 2023 may be the year I post it for my Thanksgiving recipes.)

Heirloom Tomato Pie vs Italian Crostata

Italian Crostatas are so much easier than traditional pies. They are basically pie pastry crust rolled out flat, filled and the edges folded up. No dicey transferring of crust from counter to pie pan. No crimping. Like pies, they can be sweet or savory. My Apple Galette is an example of a sweet crostata, but when I originally created that recipe, the ingredients seemed similar to the French Tart Tatin so I called it a Galette which is the French name for a crostata.

Ingredients in Heirloom Tomato Pie (AKA Crostata)

Here’s what you need:

  • Your favorite pie crust (I made half a recipe of this crust from Paleo Running Momma)
  • Ricotta Cheese (I used Kite Hill to make it dairy-free)
  • Fresh Herbs such as oregano or basil. You can used dried Italian blend if you don’t have fresh.
  • Fresh Garlic and Green Onions – these add a little bite to break up the creaminess of the ricotta.
  • Heirloom Tomatoes of similar size, different colors preferably.
  • Egg Wash (egg whisked with water) which is entirely optional but makes the crust a little more golden and shiny.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil to finish after it comes out of the oven.

Crust for Heirloom Tomato Pie

You can use any storebought crust for this recipe. If you decide to make one, the one I mentioned above is fairly straightforward and very forgiving. I say this because when you are folding up the crust below, you may feel a bit frustrated if it breaks. With a traditional pie crust, you have to be careful about too much handling because it can become tough. With the Paleo Running Momma crust, it is almond flour based and easy to “mend” by pressing pieces together if they fall apart or crack. Making your own also makes room for improv. I added black pepper to mine, but you could add fresh herbs as well.

How to Make a Crostata

I’m skipping the making of crust. You will need to make it ahead of time anyway, so we’re going straight to the rolling step. You can use this methodology for any type of crostata you want to make, just sub in your favorite fruit mixed with a little coconut sugar and pile it in the middle instead of the ricotta and tomatoes in steps three and four.

Step One:

Crust rolled flat - Heirloom Tomato Pie

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out the dough into a 12″ circle on a piece of parchment paper. Transfer the paper and all to a baking sheet.

Step Two:

Mix the ricotta with the chopped herbs and veggies (not tomatoes).

Step Three:

The Ricotta - Heirloom Tomato Pie

Spread the ricotta mixture in a 6″ circle (eyeball this) in the middle

Step Four:

Arrange the sliced tomatoes in a circular pattern over the ricotta mixture. Pat dry with paper towel. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.

Step Five:

Fold up the edges of the crust using the parchment. You want it to completely enclose the filling and about half of the tomatoes. Repair any cracks by pressing the pieces together.

Step Six:

Egg Wash - Heirloom Tomato Pie

Mix one egg with a dash of water. Whisk well. Brush over all the edges of the crust.

Step Seven:

Finished Pie Side View - Heirloom Tomato PIe

Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and crispy.

Step Eight:

EVOO on Finished Pie - Heirloom Tomato Pie

Garnish with a hefty drizzle of olive oil and extra fresh herbs if you have them.

Step Nine:

Cut into wedges and serve. Can be served warm or room temperature.

Serving Suggestions

  • Great as a brunch or light lunch entree with a side salad and fried or scrambled eggs.
  • Serve alongside your favorite grilled meat with a little arugula on top for an interesting side.
  • Cut into small wedges, it’s a great appetizer for a dinner party.

Italian-Inspired Heirloom Tomato Pie with the Best Flaky Paleo Crust


  • 1 pie crust

  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper

  • 1 8-oz container ricotta cheese

  • 1/4 cup fresh herbs, finely chopped or 2 tsp dried Italian herb blend

  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced (about 1 tsp if pre-chopped)

  • 4 medium tomatoes (baseball sized or a bit smaller), sliced 1/4″ thick

  • 1 egg

  • Fresh herbs for garnish, optional


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Roll pie crust to about 11-12″ diameter on a piece of parchment paper. Sprinkle liberally with black pepper and transfer to a baking sheet.
  • Combine ricotta with herbs, green onions, garlic and 1/2 tsp sea salt.
  • Spread into a 6″ circle in the middle of the pastry circle.
  • Overlap tomato slices to form concentric circles to cover most of the filling.
  • Carefully fold up the edges to completely enclose the filling.
  • Whisk the egg very well so no strands remain. Add 1 tsp of water and whisk again.
  • Brush the top of the pastry with the egg wash avoiding the tomatoes.
  • Place in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and crispy.
  • Let cool for a few minutes (or as long as you need to) and cut into wedges.
  • Keep for up to 5 days. Warm up in air fryer or hot oven.

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