This wonderful recipe is what everyone should have in their repertoire for appetizers.

It combines robust sun-dried tomatoes, herbaceous basil, and delicate olive oil with umami-packed briny capers, anchovies, and Worcestershire.

Ready in under 10 minutes, leftovers can stay in the fridge for two weeks. It’s perfect for keeping around for dressing up weeknight meals, spreading on sandwiches, or serving up for guests.

My friend Eliane, Chef and owner at Born To Taste, gave me this recipe a while back. She has shared so many wonderful recipes with me throughout the years, and I’m certainly grateful for this one!

The next time you’re looking for a healthy dip or spread that is chock-full of flavor, turn to this incredible tapenade.

In this Article

Why You’ll Love Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

Tasty – This Mediterranean-style dish combines basil, sun-dried tomatoes, anchovies, and Worcestershire sauce for a delicious and savory flavor. 

Easy – This impressive tapenade takes just minutes to make. There’s also nearly no cleanup since you are using just one kitchen appliance. 

Customizable – You can easily adjust the flavors or the consistency by adding more or less of various ingredients.

Here are helpful tips for the ingredients needed to make this delicious sun-dried tomato tapenade

Sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil – the star of this dish, ensure that they are bright red.

Anchovies – The anchovies play a vital role in this dish, giving it the necessary saltiness and savor. Please do not skip it or substitute it.

Drained capers – Removing all the salt or brine in your capers is a must.

Olive oil – Use a light olive oil. An intense EVOO will alter the flavor of your tapenade and will not taste the same at all. Been there, done that, and had to toss it.

Minced garlic clove – Everything always tastes better with some garlic.

Fresh basil leaves – Bring the pungent flavor of the basil and balance it against the sun-dried tomatoes well.

Worcestershire sauce – another layer of flavor and saltiness

As you read the recipe, you may notice it does not include salt. The anchovies, capers, and Worcestershire sauce bring all the seasoning that you will need

Equipment Needed

Food processor – Add all your ingredients, and you are done

Weck container – I serve it in a “weck” pot like the ones you buy to put the mousse de foie gras in. It is a rustic presentation.

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How to Make Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

Pulse the ingredients (excluding olive oil) in a food processor until chopped.

Pour olive oil while blending until you reach the desired consistency. 

Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. 

What to Serve With Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

  • On a Baguette or Crackers
  • On a Cheese Plate or Charcuterie Board
  • With Scrambled Eggs, Omelets, or Quiche

Substitutions and Variations 

Anchovies – Taste and adjust if necessary by adding another anchovy filet.

Oil – Use more or less olive oil to achieve your preferred consistency. You can also substitute avocado oil if you prefer.

Heat – For a spicy kick, add crushed red pepper flakes.

Olives – Create a flavorful olive-infused tapenade by using finely chopped olives. Try black olives, kalamata olives, or green olives.

sun dried tomato tapenade

Tips for the Best Tapenade

Choose high-quality ingredients – Be sure to use high-quality sun-dried tomatoes. Look for ones that are packed in olive oil and guaranteed to be plump and moist.

If you choose to add olives, ensure they have a rich and brine flavor. Also, always use fresh and aromatic garlic cloves.

Additionally, use extra virgin olive oil for the absolute best flavor.

Balance the flavors – Taste as you go and adjust the ingredients for the best flavor profile.

Pay attention to texture – Preferences in terms of texture vary, so adjust the texture to your own personal preference. Adjust the amount of olive oil or blend more or less.

Season well – When you’re using only a few ingredients, seasoning appropriately is crucial. In addition to salt and pepper, you can enhance the flavor by adding fresh herbs.

Other Dips and Spreads

Yogurt Feta Sauce

Cumin Dipping Sauce

Tzatziki Sauce

Ginger Mayonnaise

Frequently Asked Questions

What is tomato tapenade made of? 

This tomato tapenade is a blend of sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, basil, capers, and olive oil. It also has added umami with Worcestershire sauce and anchovies.

Some tapenades also incorporate olives or citrus like lemon juice. 

What goes well with tapenade? 

There are so many ways to use tapenade. You can use it as a dip for bread, vegetables, or spread it on cheese plates and charcuterie boards. 

It’s also an amazing sauce to use on top of proteins from fish and chicken to beef or pork.

Why is tapenade good for you? 

Tapenade is a great combination of healthy fats and vegetables. As snacks, spreads, and sauces go, it’s likely one of the healthiest choices. 


Add a little olive oil on top to store the tapenade in the fridge to prevent oxygen from affecting it.

Make-Ahead: Tapenade, like other dips, tastes better when refrigerated to allow the flavors to blend. That makes it perfect for making ahead, and serving when you’re ready. 

Refrigerator: Store homemade tapenade for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Serve it cold or let it come to room temperature.

Freezer: You can Freeze the tapenade for up to 3 months. Once at room temperature, give it a nice mixing.

Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

5 from 32 votes
sun dried tomato tapenade
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 cup
This wonderful recipe is what everyone should have in their repertoire for appetizers. Delicious and easy.


  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes olive oil
  • 3 anchovies
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic, minced
  • ½ cup basil
  • 1.5 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce


  • Place all ingredients in a food processor and chop. Add olive oil until you get a smoother texture. Serve with crackers or slices of toasted baguette.
  • I serve it in a “weck” pot like the ones you buy to put the mousse de foie gras in. It is a rustic presentation.


Calories: 650kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 70g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 341mg | Potassium: 153mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 635IU | Vitamin C: 4.3mg | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 1.6mg

Giangi’s Kitchen provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as a registered dietician does not calculate them.

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Originally published on July 4, 2020. Updated on September 10, 2023.