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Caprese Beef

Published by Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD on May 13, 2021

You need just 30 minutes to make this remarkedly easy Mediterranean inspired lean beef recipe 

Oh yes, this recipe is excellent eating. This dish marries some of the most notable ingredients in Italian cuisine: mozzarella, basil, olive oil, and tomatoes. Add lean, tender tri-tip beef, and you’ll savor and revel in this delightful meal.

Now, some may say, how can beef be part of a heart healthy diet? If your plan is to improve your health and eating patterns, there’s a place for every food, including lean beef. Especially when paired with the Mediterranean-style eating pattern, beef can support heart health which is great news for anyone who enjoys beef and is interested in preventing heart disease.  The trick is to use appropriate portions, choosing leaner beef cuts, and to use it in moderation, rotating it with other lean proteins like poultry and heart-healthy fatty fish throughout the week.

Research has shown that lean red meat like beef, is just as effective at improving certain heart disease risk factors, such as blood pressure and total and LDL cholesterol, when following a Mediterranean-style eating pattern. To find out much more about this important research, read the published study here:

Since the Mediterranean dietary eating pattern uses a wide variety of foods and flavors from the countries that surround the Mediterranean Sea, start building a healthy Mediterranean plate by doing the following:

  1. Start by filling half your plate with fresh vegetables and fruits.
  2. Fill in the other half of your plate with whole grains and lean protein such as lean beef. A portion of lean beef is approximately 3 ounces which is about the size and thickness of the palm of your hand.
  3. Add in dairy and healthy fats.
  4. Be sure to choose these foods regularly that are easily incorporated into a Mediterranean pattern of eating.

Here are examples of various foods from different food groups to consider when eating a more Mediterranean-style dietary plan:


Artichokes, Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, Eggplant, Fennel, Kale, Leeks, Mushrooms, Mustard Greens, Onions, Radishes, Peas, Peppers, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Spinach.


Apricots, Cherries, Dates, Figs, Grapes, Oranges, Melons, Pears, Pomegranates, Strawberries, Tomatoes.


Lean Beef, Lean Pork, Lean Poultry, Fish/Seafood, Whole Eggs, Soy, Dried Lentils, Dried Beans and Dried Peas.

Whole Grains

Breads, Barley, Bulgur, Couscous, Farro, Oats, Polenta, Brown Rice.


Cheese (Brie, Goat, Feta, Mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino, Ricotta), Yogurt, Milk.


Olives, Olive Oil, Avocado, Nuts & Seeds.



To make Caprese Beef, it uses staple kitchen ingredients and comes together quickly.  This recipe is from my book, The Heart Disease Prevention Cookbook: 125 Easy Mediterranean Diet Recipes For A Healthier You, available on Amazon and Barnes&


Ready for a recipe with big flavor and plenty of heart health promoting ingredients?  Try it out tonight!

Caprese Beef

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 4 1-cup servings
Calories 402 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound tri-tip steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil


  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers
  • Add the steak, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 20 minutes total.
  • Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes
  • Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds
  • Spread in an even layer on the bottom of the skillet and turn off the heat. Sprinkle evenly with the cheese. Cover and allow the cheese to melt, 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with the basil and serve.


Nutrition per serving: Calories - 402; Total Fat - 25 grams; Protein - 39 grams; Carboydrates - 5 grams; Fiber - 1 gram; Sodium - 230 milligrams 
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Cheryl Mussatto, MS, RD, LD

Cheryl Mussatto MS, RD, LD is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and Institutional Management from Kansas State University. She is a clinical dietitian for Cotton O’Neil Clinics in Topeka and Osage City; an adjunct professor for Allen Community College, Burlingame, KS where she teaches Basic Nutrition; and is a freelance writer and blog contributor for Dr. David Samadi, Urologic Oncologist Expert and World Renowned Robotic Surgeon in New York City. Cheryl is also the author of The Nourished Brain, The Latest Science on Food’s Power for Protecting the Brain from Alzheimers and Dementia and The Prediabetes Action Plan and Cookbook, both available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback editions.

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