About this Recipe
Home grown tomatoes are probably one of the best of Mother Nature’s inventions on this planet! Both of my Grandmothers are excellent tomato gardeners and have passed down some of their secrets into my willing brain. Fresh tomatoes are arguable the yummiest little treats that could possibly exist in nature, especially when they are picked and eaten right off the vine like we were lucky enough to do as kids. This easy 3 ingredient basic canned tomato recipe is made with, you guessed it, 3 easy ingredients. You can of course later on add more flavors when you are cooking like onions, garlic and herbs. What we like so much about this super simple canned tomato recipe is that it can be flavored after the fact and therefore is super versatile!
1. You MUST sterilize your jars before any kind of canning recipe. Sterilizing from start to finish for a batch this size will take about 30-40-minutes. We recommend Grandmother's Kitchen helpful post on How to Sterilize Canning Jars. Other methods of sterilizing besides boiling each jar are using the hot cycle in dishwasher or you can do them in the oven at 225 degrees F, placing the jars and lids onto cookie sheet and leaving them in oven 20 minutes. NEVER put a COLD jar into boiling water as it could crack and break. Rather, be sure it has been warmed a little in a sink of warm water.
2. Canned tomatoes are good for 12 to 18 months.
3. The reason lemon juice is added is to raise the acidity level.
4. If you do not have a double sink you can always use very large mixing bowls, and blanch the tomatoes in smaller batches.
5. You can also cook the tomatoes and put some into ziploc bags or plastic containers that have a sealing lid in your freezer just for another method of preserving.
7. Sometimes you will get lucky at the end of tomato season and find some excellent prices on the last tomatoes of the year when the farmers are sort of just picking them off the ground. Since they will be cut and cooked anyways you can certainly use the less than 'perfect' tomatoes for canning. Of course you can also find big boxes of tomatoes at your local produce store too.
8. If you are a tomato gardener or are blessed to have access to fresh local tomatoes from a friend, or farmer then this basic canned tomato recipe is just the one you have been looking for. There are many canned tomato recipes, and recently my Mother was on a mission to create a basic tomato recipe that you can easily can, add then have on hand so many types of recipes like sauces, soups and stews.
Makes: 6-8 quart jars
20-30 pounds fresh tomatoes
Bottled pure lemon juice - 2 Tablespoons per jar
course pickling salt - 1 teaspoon per jar
1. Wash and sterilize the canning jars, lids and rings. We recommend Grandmother's Kitchen helpful post on How to Sterilize Canning Jars.
2. Wash the tomatoes in a sink full of water. Place the washed tomatoes into the second sink. Be sure it has the plug in as you will be using this side to pour the boiling water into.
3. With this amount of tomatoes you will be repeating this process more than once to get them all done.
4. Boil water in a kettle and pour the boiling water over the washed tomatoes. It will take a few kettle fulls to get enough water to cover the tomatoes. 5. Let the tomatoes sit submersed in the boiling hot water for a few minutes until you see the skins starting to peel back from the tomatoes.
6. Drain the water out of the sink and let the tomatoes sit until they are cool enough to handle.
7. Use a paring knife to slip the skins off and cut out the cores, discard into a bowl.
8. Place the peeled cored tomatoes into a large glass bowl. They will then have to be cut into pieces before you put them into the clean jars. A second method is to cut each tomato directly into the jar.
9. Fill each of the jars with tomatoes to about 1/2 inch from the top. Smash down the tomatoes as you fill the jars to be sure there is no air space and that the jars are tightly packed. Wipe the tops of the jars so they are clean before you put the seals and rings on.
10. Put 1 teaspoon of pickling salt and 2 Tablespoons of pure lemon into each jar. You can also put this at the bottom or the jar if you like. Wipe the tops with paper towel to be sure they are clean.
11. Put the seals and rings onto the jars and screw on firmly.
12. Put the prepared filled jars into a canner. The amount of jars you fit will depend on the size of the jars and the size of the canner.
13. Bring to a boil and cook (process) for 45 minutes.
14. When done, use tongs and pot holders to lift the jars out and be very careful as this is scalding hot. Have a towel on the counter to place the jars onto while they cool.
15. The lids will pop and indent down when they have sealed.
This easy canned tomatoes recipe is just the thing to try after an abundant summer harvest or when tomatoes are aplenty at the farmers market. Canned tomatoes are a great addition to any pantry, so you always have them on hand to use in all of your healthy meal ideas to include sauces, soup recipes, stews and chili recipes. Canned tomatoes should be stored in a dark cool area.
These canned tomatoes are the best when you are in need of bright, bold flavors for your healthy meal ideas. Some of the dinner ideas you might use these canned tomatoes include pasta dishes, Indian dishes, pizza recipes, brisket recipes, eggplant Parmesan, lasagna recipes and so much more.
Tomatoes are a fruit that is best to buy organic when possible. Tomatoes are number 9 on the EWG Dirty Dozen Shoppers Guide of Pesticides in Produce. Nearly four pesticides were detected on the average tomato that was grown conventionally. Tomatoes can carry 69 different pesticides. And because you eat the tomato skin, you want always to make sure to give your tomatoes a good wash first. One sample of conventionally grown tomatoes contained 15 different pesticides and breakdown products. You can benefit from tomato nutrition in a variety of forms whether it be canned tomatoes, fresh, dried, or tomato paste. Canned tomatoes and dried tomatoes allow you to enjoy tomatoes all year-round.(1)
References: (1) Dirty Dozen, EWG's 2018 Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™ (2017), Retrieved from https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/dirty-dozen.php