Canning tomatoes for soups and stews over the winter captures the fresh tomato taste into the winter. We use ours for chili and pasta sauce mostly. It makes such a difference in the flavor when using fresh ingredients. I also like to know exactly what I am feeding my family, and try to limit processed foods we use.
I do not garden. I have what they call a black thumb. Don’t get me wrong, I like planting things and I usually do, but my husband often refers my plants as “putting them in their final resting place”. My mom brought over all these tomatoes for me. (Thanks Mom!) She is a great gardener, and brings me her extras, which I appreciate. If she doesn’t have extras, I can usually find a bushel of tomatoes at my local farm stand. They have boxes they sell just for canning. I prefer to find someone who has grown the tomatoes locally because the flavor greatly differs from what you would purchase in the grocery store. When preserving food, either by freezing or canning, the best rule is to always buy from a local farmer, or grow it yourself.
Start by washing your tomatoes, and boiling water in a large stock pot. Wash all your mason jars and lids. Prepare you water bath canner by boiling the water, and place washed jars into the water and leave in the hot water until ready to use. You can also use your dishwasher on the sanitize setting. Boil tomatoes for 1 minute or until you see the skins crack. Dip them into an ice water bath, peel and core.
Pack peeled tomatoes in jars. I squish mine down so that they are canned in their own juice. If you don’t want to squish them you can fill with boiling water. Using a rubber spatula insert in and pull it toward the middle of the jar to release air bubbles.
Pack until they have 1/2 inch of head space. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and one tablespoon lemon juice (to keep red color) onto the tops of each jar. Wipe the top of each jar with clean damp cloth. Place lid and ring on jar and set aside and complete remaining tomatoes.
Place your prepared jars in your canning pot with enough water to cover your jars by one inch. Process for 45 minutes for quart size jars. (40 minutes for pint size jars) after 45 minutes Remove from heat and leave in water for 5 minutes. Remove from water and let cool for 12 -48 hours. Check for a good seal on each jar before storing away.
Tomato Canning Recipe
- Lemon juice
- wash all tomatoes
- boil tomatoes in water for one min
- dip in ice water bath
- peel and decor
- pack tomato into sanitized mason jars
- add 1 tsp of salt for quart size jars, 1/2 tsp for pint size jars
- add 1 tbsp lemon juice
- wipe lids with clean moist cloth
- place lid and rings on tops
- boil for 45 minutes for quarts, 40 minutes for pints
- shut off stove and let cool for 5 minutes in water bath
- remove jars from canner and let cool for 12-48 hours
- inspect jars for seals before putting them away