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Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta

These crispy Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta are the perfect quick, easy and healthy bite-sized appetizer recipe! The fresh flavors will make it hard not to fill up on them!

Pesto Polenta Bites with Fresh Tomato Bruschetta

Do you have a go to appetizer that you make every year?

You know, that one appetizer that tastes phenomenal but is also crazy easy to make … cuz  “time” is few and far between during the holidays! 

Image of Tomato Bruschetta Ingredients

Well, one of my go to’s is a simple fresh Tomato Bruschetta. It’s so easy to make with just a few ingredients and about 5 minutes of chopping. It can be made ahead of time and put on just about anything.

In fact, we had a Christmas Party to go to last weekend and my plan was to make these Polenta Bites, photograph them and then take them to the party.

But after I made them I realized that a good friend of mine who was going to the party was allergic to pine nuts, pesto has pine nuts in it … so I couldn’t bring these bites to the party. No matter how amazing they were!

What did I do? I made a little bit more Bruschetta, added some balsamic vinegar to it, brought some pita chips and called it a night. It was perfect! Plus bruschetta is so fresh and light!

Image of Crispy Polenta Bites with Fresh Tomato Bruschetta

Normally I will add bruschetta to some butter toasted bread. Today we are doing something a little different.

Polenta! Have you ever had it?

What is Polenta?

It’s basically corn meal that’s cooked and stirred with love for like 30 minutes until it’s the consistency of grits or a creamy oatmeal. Some people eat it just like that, or sometimes they fry or bake it. Today, I cheated a bit and purchased pre-made polenta. Take the shortcuts when you can! Then I sliced it, brushed it with some olive oil and baked it so that the polenta got all nice and crispy. 🙂

Image of Polenta

Once the polenta gets crispy it basically turns into a vehicle for any toppings you want!

This time I chose to top it with homemade Basil Pesto and my go to Bruschetta! Ya’ll this appetizer is absolutely glorious and a refreshing treat to all those “heavy” appetizers! Plus it gluten free! Woot woot! You know… if you’re into that sort of thang!

If you’re not and just like to eat good food, well your in luck too because this is both. Healthy AND down right delicious! You can say thank you later! 🙂

Image of Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta

I hope you aren’t getting sick of appetizer recipes yet. Because I have a couple more coming your way! I just can’t help myself! After all, the holiday season is all about Jesus, Appetizers, Cookies, Cocktails, and Presents right?

Oh hey, I just realized that this is a Meatless Monday recipe too! Woohoo, I actually posted a Vegetarian recipe ON Meatless Monday and didn’t do it on purpose. High fives to me!

Ok. Sorry. Apparently it’s the little things for me!

Alright folks, Happy Christmas Week and Bon Appetit … don’t forget to add these Pesto Polento Bites to your menu!

Image of Crispy Polenta Bites with Basil Pesto & Tomato Bruschetta

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Five Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta on a Gray Surface

Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta

  • Author: Krista
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 10-15 bites 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Italian


These crispy Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta are the perfect quick, easy and healthy bite-sized appetizer recipe! The fresh flavors will make it hard not to fill up on them!


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ready made polenta roll, cut into 1/2” slices
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil pesto

Tomato Bruschetta:

  • 1 pint champagne tomatoes (cherry or grape will work too), diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chiffoned
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt & pepper to taste


  1. Preheat broiler to HIGH.
  2. In a medium bowl, add tomatoes, garlic, fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste. Toss everything together and set aside.
  3. Gently brush both sides of the polenta discs and place on a greased baking sheet.
  4. Broil for 7-10 minutes or until slightly browned.
  5. Remove from oven.
  6. Smear 1/2 teaspoon of pesto on each disc and top with fresh tomato bruschetta.
  7. SERVE!

Keywords: polenta recipe, baked polenta recipe, how to make polenta, tomato bruschetta, bruschetta recipe, best bruschetta recipe, italian appetizer recipe, italian appetizer

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4 Images of Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta



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15 comments on “Pesto Polenta Bites with Tomato Bruschetta”

  1. Seriously…this was awesome. Everyone loved it and it looks and tastes like a top restaurant quality appetizer. Thank you!

  2. Avatar photo
    Miss Havisham

    I just made this recipe for the first time, and I will definitely be adding it to my repertoire! The only thing I did differently was use a grill pan for the polenta rounds==and only because Santa brought me one for Christmas (since I was so good during the year). My grocery store offers a great local source of fresh basil year-round, so I’ll never have to compromise on this fabulous dish! Thanks for posting it!

  3. In case it comes up again, not all pesto recipes have pine nuts in them, so you can make them for your friend, too! (My hubby can’t have them, either.)

  4. Avatar photo
    Julia @ HappyFoods Tube

    What an interesting appetizer! I tried polenta for the first time when on holidays in Italy and I loved it. However, never tried making it at home. My question: can you make these using ordinary polenta – not ready made? I see yours is of a thick consistency which I am not sure how to achieve with just cooking it from scratch.

    1. I know. That’s why I love it, it’s different! You can definitely make it using regular polenta, just don’t add as much liquid to the mixture when you’re making it. 🙂