Crafts & DIY
Here's how to can your tomatoes and store them longer
Emma Smizer


I love fresh tomatoes. Nothing tastes better than those fantastic tomatoes you pluck from your very own garden – they’re just plain delicious! But have you ever noticed that store-bought tomatoes tend to be lacking in taste? Yeah, me too. Unfortunately those homegrown tomatoes don’t last forever, unless of course, you can them.

I know, I know. Canning? Isn’t that something your mom or grandmother used to do? You can just buy canned tomatoes from a store, but expect to have the same results of lackluster taste and quality.

However, canning your own tomatoes is surprisingly easy and could really help your budget. Plus, you get that fresh-tomato taste all year long! For more detailed info, head over to The Old Farmer’s Almanac.

Let’s break it down into 3 easy steps!

1. Getting Your Canning Materials Together


You’ll want to make sure you have all of your canning materials on hand, as canning is a pretty quick activity without much wait-time between steps.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Several ripened tomatoes
  • Two large pots
  • Canning jars & lids
  • Canning tongs
  • Funnel & ladle

Pro-tip: Canning tomatoes doesn’t mean that you have to can just tomatoes. Adding some fresh herbs like oregano or basil, and cooked onions or red peppers can really brighten up your DIY canning.

2. Prepping Your Tomatoes


Next, you’re going to blanch your tomatoes.

This sounds very fancy, but it turns out that blanching is actually very easy. Basically, you’re going to remove the skins of your tomatoes by boiling them. Yep, all you have to do is a make a shallow cross-cut on the top of your tomatoes and then boil them until their skins slide right off.

While you’re blanching your tomatoes, you’ll also want to cook down any peppers, onions or herbs you’d like to add. We recommend just doing an easy sauté with everything in one pan to lock in all of those delicious flavors.

Once you have your tomatoes diced up and any additional veggies prepped, you’re ready to start canning!

3. Time to Can!


Take one of your large pots and boil some water, the other pot you’re going to fill with cool water. Make sure to add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the pint-sized jars, and 1 teaspoon if you’re using quart-sized jars – salt is a natural preservative and will keep your tomatoes fresh!

Using a funnel and ladle, fill each jar to the top but make sure you can still put the canning lid on without any overflow. Once you’ve filled the jar, make sure to wipe the rim of the jar off – this is absolutely critical to canning correctly as this will ensure that your jar fully seals. Place the lid and screw band on tightly.

Next, carefully place your jar into the boiling water. You’ll want at least 1 inch of water between your jar and the surface of the water. It should take 40 minutes for pints and 45 minutes for quarts.

Be safe and use jar tongs to remove your tomatoes. Next, transplant the jars to a large pot of cool/room temperature water – do NOT use cold water, as having the jars moved too quickly from hot to cold can cause the glass to crack.

Happy canning!

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Let us know in the comments how your canned tomatoes turned out!