Tomato and Vidalia Onion Pie with Bacon is my deep-dish version of a Southern classic recipe in a shortcut pie crust. This deep-dish savory pie is perfect for brunch or brinner with a side salad. It's loaded with fresh tomatoes, sliced Georgia Vidalia onions, mayonnaise, cheese and crispy bacon.
This easy, one-dish meal is triple layered with garden ripe tomatoes, sweet onions and crispy bacon in a flaky shortcut pie crust. Nothing difficult about this Southern recipe.
Why Vidalia Onions in Tomato Pie?
I have less than half of the 10 pound bag of Vidalia onions my husband brought home from a Civitan fundraiser because I've been in the kitchen creating recipes with them!
Tomatoes and sweet onions are a natural pair in most recipes like my Vidalia Onion and Tomato-Basil Salad.
What if I can't find Vidalia Onions?
No worries. First, look for another sweet onion like Walla Walla onions. If you can't find any sweet onions, then I recommend yellow Spanish onions. White onions tend to be slightly sharper in flavor. You can read about the differences in onions here in an article by The Kitchn.
What's the shortcut?
1. I used Pillsbury rolled-up pie crust instead of a homemade crust. It saves tons of time and is so much better than the frozen, pre-shaped pie crusts that taste like cardboard to me. I also like being able to flute my own edges with this crust which helps add that "homemade" look to it.
For the deep-dish size, this crust is just rolled out to a 12-inch circle for a 9 to 9 1/2-inch deep-dish pie plate. It does make the crust a little thinner but is still plenty thick to hold up the filling.
2. Pre-shredded Italian blend cheese saves time and money. Money? The Italian blend has four cheeses in it. If I had to buy Provolone, Mozzarella, Parmesan, and Romano separately, that would be quite expensive.
Mozzarella or even Cheddar cheese can be used to make Vidalia Onion and Tomato Pie with Bacon, so don't run to the store if that's all you have in the fridge.
What you will need
- One Pillsbury refrigerated, rolled-up pie crust or a partially baked pre-shaped deep-dish pie crust
- 6 slices bacon (Precooked bacon can also be chopped or crumbled)
- 3 small or 2 medium ripe tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Half of one medium Vidalia or other sweet onion
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 1/2 cups Italian blend pre-shredded cheese (or any combination of Mozzarella, Provolone, Parmesan, Romano cheese)
How to make this tomato pie and onion pie
Let the rolled up pie dough stand at room temperature according to package directions for 15 minutes before unrolling it. Many people overlook this step on the directions.
This is a good time to gather ingredients, salt the tomato slices and cook the bacon.
Gently unroll the pie crust and smooth out any "wrinkles" with a rolling pin or smooth glass tumbler. Roll it out to a 12-inch circle.
Fold it in half and gently lift it up and place on the deep-dish pie plate. Unfold it and gently press the bottom of the pie dough around only the bottom of the dish. It will look like the image below.
Folding the pie dough in half to transport it, helps prevent it from stretching as it is lifted up and moved.
How to flute or crimp pie dough
Fold about 1/2 inch of the edge under all the way around. Some place may be a little more or less to make it even.
Then, flute or crimp the edges by holding your pointer finger and thumb on one hand almost together like you were going to pinch something. Take your pointer finger (I'm right handed so I use my right finger) on your other hand, push edge of the dough into your pincher grip with the side of your finger and "pinch" it together to form the shape below.
You can also use the tines of a fork and simply press the folded edges of the pie dough down onto the pie dish for a different look or if that is easier for you.
Blind bake the crust
Line the fluted pie crust with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Cover the bottom of the crust with ceramic pie weights or any dried beans you have in your pantry (about 1 cup).
Bake the weighted crust at 425F degrees for 9 minutes. Let it cool while preparing the filling and slicing the onions. Remove the pie weights or beans and parchment before filling the crust.
Note: I always encourage everyone to buy local. Did you know China Doll brand beans and rice are based in Alabama and also produces Dixie Lily grits and cornmeal?
What is blind baking?
Blind baking is pre-baking the crust with pie weights or dried beans placed in the bottom of the unbaked crust.
Without the pie weights, the bottom of the crust will puff up and the sides of the crust might sink a little. Line the bottom of the crust with aluminum foil or parchment paper first, then add the pie weights.
Don't go out and buy pie weights if you have a package of any kind of dried beans or rice. I always say, "Use what you have."
Slice and salt the tomatoes
Sprinkling salt on sliced tomatoes helps draw the liquid out to prevent soupy tomato pie. Place the slices on paper towels to help soak up the liquid. Gently press the tops of the tomatoes with paper towels to remove additional liquid. ®
Slice the onion
Slice the onion in half from top to bottom (not horizontally). Turn the onion half on its side and cut into 1/4-inch slices.
Cook the bacon
If a recipe calls for bacon to be "cooked and crumbled", I always chop the uncooked bacon first, then fry it.
This is a shortcut in itself because it takes less time to cook 6 slices of chopped bacon than 6 whole slices. It also ensures the bacon is evenly cooked as you stir occasionally.
Stack the bacon slices on top of each other. Slice them crosswise to make 1/2-inch strips. Cook the bacon on medium-low to medium heat about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until crisp and browned.
Drain the bacon
Don't throw out those yummy bacon drippings! Pour the cooked bacon into a metal sieve that's placed over a heat-proof bowl to drain.
When the drippings have cooled, spoon them into Mason jar with a lid to use to sear chicken or pan-fry vegetables.
Prepare the filling
Stir together mayonnaise, sour cream, pepper, and 2 cups of the cheese.
Layer tomato, onion, bacon and filling
When I start layering the onions and tomatoes, I start with the onions. I think this helps lift the tomatoes from the bottom and prevents a soggy bottom crust.
Start the layering with the the onions, then tomato slices, bacon and filling. (See the recipe below for layering details.
Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup cheese on top.
Sometimes I'll add a little fresh basil or chopped green onion but today I'm letting the tomatoes and onions take center stage.
Of course, the bacon tries to steal the show....bacon always gets my attention!
I like to sprinkle a little extra cheese around the outside edge of the crust for this savory pie.
Decrease the heat and bake
The pie crust pre-bakes at 400F but the pie bakes at a lower temperature. Don't forget to lower it to 375F degrees. Bake it on the middle rack for 35 minutes or until golden and bubbly.
Be sure to let the pie stand for 10 minutes to cool before slicing. It will make a much prettier slice.
Just look at all that melty cheese, creamy filling, fresh slices of tomato and Vidalia onion! And bacon! Don't forget the bacon!
I would love to hear from you what you like to make with Vidalia onions during the short peak season of these Southern sweet onions.
If you make any of my Vidalia onion or tomato recipes, let me know how you like them with a comment below and tag me on Instagram if you post a pic with @gritsandgouda.
Tomato and Vidalia Onion Pie with Bacon
- 1 Pillsbury refrigerated, rolled up pie crust
- 6 slices bacon
- 3 small tomatoes, sliced Or 2 medium
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 of one medium Vidalia onion, sliced and separated into rings
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 1/2 cups Italian blend shredded cheese, divided (Mozzarella, Provolone, Parmesan, Romano)
- Place the rolled up pie crust on the counter; let it stand at room temperature 15 minutes according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, place tomato slices in a large colander or on paper towels or parchment paper; sprinkle with salt and let them stand 10 minutes. This helps pull out some of the juice.Gently press paper towels on the tomatoes after 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 425F degrees.
- Gently unroll the pie crust and gently smooth out the curled edges with a rolling pin or smooth drinking glass to a 12-inch circle. Fold it in half to transfer it to the pie dish.
- Fold about 1/2 inch of the edge under all the way around. Some place may be a little more or less to make it even.Then, flute or crimp the edges by holding your pointer finger and thumb on one hand almost together like you were going to pinch something. Take your pointer finger (I'm right handed so I use my right finger) on your other hand, push edge of the dough into your pincher grip with the side of your finger and "pinch" it together to form the shape below.
- Line the fluted pie crust with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Cover the bottom of the crust with ceramic pie weights or any dried beans you have in your pantry (about 1 cup).Bake the weighted crust at 400F degrees for 9 minutes. Let it cool while preparing the filling and slicing the onions. Remove the pie weights or beans and parchment before filling the crust.
- Reduce oven heat to 375F degrees.
- Meanwhile, stack the bacon slices on top of each other. Slice them crosswise to make 1/2-inch strips. Cook the bacon on medium-low to medium heat about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until crisp and browned
- Arrange one third of the onion rings on the bottom of the partially baked pie crust. Sprinkle with half of bacon.
- Combine mayonnaise, sour cream, pepper, and 2 cups of cheese in a medium bowl; dollop one third of the mayonnaise mixture between the rings on the bottom of the crust and on the rings.Arrange a single layer of tomatoes on the mayo mixture. Top with one third of onion rings and then a second layer of tomatoes. This time, dollop the tomatoes with one third of mayo mixture and spread to the edges of the pie.Arrange the remaining one third of onion rings in a single layer and sprinkle with remaining bacon. Dollop with remaining one third of mayo mixture.
- Sprinkle entire pie with remaining 1/2 cup reserved shredded cheese. Sprinkle some on the edges of the crust, if you like.Bake at 375 for 35 minutes or until filling is hot and bubbly. Let pie cool 10 minutes before serving to firm up enough to slice.