Microwave-assisted extraction (MAE) was investigated for extraction of phenolic compounds from tomato with maximised antioxidant activities using response surface methodology (RSM) coupled with a central composite design, and in vitro antioxidant assays (FRAP and ORAC). MAE was more efficient for greater antioxidant activities and higher total phenolic contents than solvent extraction. The optimal MAE processing parameters were 96.5 °C, 2.06 min, 66.2% ethanol for FRAP, and 96.5 °C, 1.66 min, 61.1% ethanol for ORAC. The models were successfully applied to 20 tomato cultivars, whose total phenolic contents (TPC) and indexes (TPI) were 489.30-997.45 mg gallic acid equivalent/100 g dry weight (DW) and 281.34-468.52 mg/100 g DW, respectively. Eight phenolic compounds were identified. Individual phenolics were 6.10-42.73 mg/100 g DW. The FRAP, but not the ORAC value showed good correlation with the TPC or TPI. The methodologies developed and the knowledge acquired in this study will provide useful information to tomato breeders and food processors.