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Simple And Delicious Tomato Basil Biscuit Cups

Need a quick party appetizer? Make these tomato basil biscuit cups stat!

Single tomato basil cup on a white plate

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I first made these tomato basil biscuit cups years ago. Somehow I forgot about them until I needed an appetizer to go with an Italian themed lunch a friend was creating for another friend’s birthday.

I’m so glad I stumbled across these again and remade them. A double batch, no less.

This simple appetizer is a “semi-homemade” recipe, which means it’s ready super fast with minimal prep time. That’s what I need when I host a party or gathering.

Even better, these hand held appetizers disappeared, and everyone raved about them. For so few ingredients, they have a ton of flavor.

This would make a perfect appetizer for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, as well as for New Year’s. They look a little elegant, but they’re a cinch to throw together last minute.

Hand holding a tomato appetizer

A friend suggested adding a drizzle of balsamic glaze across these just before you serve them, and I bet that would be a great addition! Pro tip: save time and buy the bottled balsamic glaze instead of making your own reduction.

Looking for more great appetizer ideas? Check out some of my favorites at the end of this article.

Can I make these ahead of time?

While I would make them just before your gathering and serve them fresh from the oven, you can make these in advance. And yes, they reheat beautifully, too, if you happen to make them in advance or have leftovers.

After they cool, store them in a single layer in a tightly sealed container in your fridge. When you want to serve them, place them on a baking tray in your oven at 200 degrees for eight minutes.

You want the inside to warm completely and the biscuit cups to crisp up again without cooking too much or burning.

What kind of biscuits should I use?

While I usually make biscuits from scratch, this recipe calls for refrigerated biscuits. Yay for easy, right?

I use Pillsbury Grands, as the generic biscuits are either not the flaky ones or don’t have eight in a package.

You want to grab the flaky biscuits that have layers, not “traditional” biscuits. Go for the original flavor, although if you accidentally get buttermilk, that will work just fine.

Thankfully each package of refrigerated biscuit dough has eight biscuits in it, which is exactly what you need for this appetizer.

How do I measure grated parmesan cheese?

First, please please do not use the cheese in the green can. It doesn’t taste right in this recipe, nor does it melt the way you want it to.

You want to use a block of parmesan if you can, but buying pregrated cheese will work more in this recipe than in many others. They still have fillers in them that keep them melting and integrating into the filling as well as freshly grated parm, which is why I don’t use them.

If you use a box grater or a wide ribbon grater, it’s quick to grate what you need from a block of cheese. And it’s far cheaper than buying already grated cheese, so you win all around.

When you grate your parmesan cheese, pack it into your measuring cup but not super tight. Your goal is to fill the cup without a lot of air pockets.

And if you use a little extra, I won’t tell anyone. It just makes these even better.

Do I need to grease my muffin tins?

The short answer? No.

When I first made these, I used to grease the muffin tins. However, I realized that these biscuits bake on an ungreased cookie sheet, so I tried baking without greasing the tins.

Both my nonstick and my “regular” muffin tins released the tomato basil biscuit cups with no issues when I didn’t grease the pans, so that part of the instructions got taken out when I updated this recipe.

How to Make Tomato Basil Biscuit Cups

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 

Read This Next:  Simple Slow Roasted Italian Tomatoes Recipe

Make sure you have muffin tins enough to hold 16 of these biscuit cups. If you have only 6 count tins, add a bit of water to the cups that will be empty to keep the tins from warping in the oven without something baking in it.

Make sure your cream cheese is as room temperature, and mix it with the basil, milk, and Parmesan. Add a little salt and pepper to taste. It doesn’t take much, as the Parmesan is already salty.

Gently split each biscuit in half, peeling it apart with your fingers. Don’t rip it in half to create a half moon; you want your biscuit half as tall as it was before.

Stretch each round of dough slightly and place it in an empty muffin tin so that the edges are atop the tin.

Place a dollop of the filling inside the Grand. Remember that the cream cheese and Parmesan will be very rich, so don’t put too much in there.

Halve the cherry tomatoes, and carefully place three pieces atop each cup.

Muffin tin with biscuit cup appetizers

Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes, until the dough is a beautiful golden brown. Serve immediately or at room temperature and watch them disappear!

Once you try these tomato basil biscuit cups, bookmark the recipe so you can make it again and again!

Try some of my favorite appetizer recipes for your next gathering:

Holding a tomato basil cup over a tray of more of them

Tomato Basil Biscuit Cups

Yield: 16 cups
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

This is one of the easiest appetizer recipes you can make. As a hand held food, it's perfect for any gathering - and it tastes amazing.


  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 c fresh Parmesan, grated
  • 24 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 T dried basil
  • 2 T milk
  • 1 package Pillsbury Grands, original flavor
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix cream cheese with basil, milk, parmesan, salt, and pepper.
  3. Gently split each Grand in half - peeling apart the rounds. Stretch each circle slightly and place into an empty muffin tin.
  4. Add a dollop of filling inside the biscuit.
  5. Halve cherry tomatoes, and carefully place three atop each cup.
  6. Bake at 350 for 10 or so minutes, until the dough is a beautiful golden brown. Serve immediately or at room temperature.


  • Make sure you add a little water to any empty muffin tin cups. If you bake it with an empty cup, your pan will warp over time.
  • Do not use the parmesan cheese in the green can. This calls for fresh grated parmesan cheese.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 144Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 359mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 4g

This site uses an outside source to provide nutrition as a courtesy. If you need exact values, please calculate yourself.

Did you make this recipe?

Please rate the recipe above and save it on Pinterest so you can find it to make again and again. Leave me a comment to let me know what you think about it, too!

Hand holding biscuit appetizer over tray

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Friday 13th of January 2012

Melisa - Yep :) I figured this might be up your alley. You'll have to come over for a party when I make these one day....

Melisa Wells

Tuesday 27th of December 2011

Okay, YUM.


Thursday 15th of December 2011

Sandra - When you entertain, you have to have something savory. These were really good. I heated up the last couple for breakfast the past few days, and they actually were really good in the morning, too!


Wednesday 14th of December 2011

I don't usually bake savory goodies, but this may alter my ways. Great idea for appetizers or finger foods! Thanks!


Wednesday 14th of December 2011

Tara - They are, aren't they? I'm definitely keeping these in the rotation for future get togethers. SO easy and tasty, too.

Pat - Wowww. So umm what ARE you eating? :) I'm not sure whether to cross my fingers that your cholesterol goes down or stays where it is!

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