7 ways to preserve tomatoes for winter

This one will be short, friends, because let’s face it, we all should be canning this weekend. Tomatoes are still lining the aisles at local markets, heaped high in baskets and waiting to be brought home and put up for the winter.

Around here, tomatoes take front and centre in fall preserving. Rather than introduce a new recipe, I though I’d shine a light on a handful from the archives that are tested and perfected to the max.

Take your pick between a simple slow cooker ketchup or a classic Marinara sauce. Stick to whole canned tomatoes or choose to preserve them already crushed. Just get busy!

7 Ways to Preserve Tomatoes for Winter | Simple Bites #preserving #canning #tomatoes

1. Home Canned Tomatoes

A pantry staple that is less work than you might think, these beauties are the first step to getting hooked on preserving tomatoes. I can mine by the quart, which holds about 8 medium Roma tomatoes.

Get the recipe: Home Canned Tomatoes.

Preserving oven dehydrated tomatoes on simplebites.net

2. Oven Dried Tomatoes in Oil

These are dynamic and flavor-packed tomatoes. Freeze them for up to 6 months and enjoy them  during the winter on pizza, tucked into sandwiches or tossed with pasta.

Get the recipe: Oven Dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil.

crushed tomatoes canned

3. Home Crushed Tomatoes (Canned or Frozen)

Crushed tomatoes take up less space than whole and this version can be preserved either in the freezer or on the pantry shelves after processing.

Get the recipe: Home Crushed Tomatoes.

tomatoes at market

4. Home Canned Marinara Sauce

Having homemade marinara sauce on your pantry shelf is a dinnertime lifesaver because it means that you’re never more than 20 minutes away from a meal that you can feel good about.

Get the recipe: Home Canned Marinara Sauce.

pizza sauce on crust

5. Pizza Sauce (canning or freezing)

I can pizza sauce every summer, because, the secret really IS in the sauce and we love our homemade pizza in winter.

Get the recipe: Homemade Pizza Sauce 3 Ways.


6. Tomato Herb Sauce for Freezing

This tasty recipe has specifically been developed for freezing only, as tomato sauce with oil should not be canned using the boiling water method.

Get the recipe: Tomato Herb Sauce.


7. Slow Cooker Tomato Ketchup

Ketchup is perfect for the slow cooker because it takes a long time to cook away the excess liquid. Cooking it low and slow, rather than quickly on the stove, will help bring out a depth of flavor that lets the summer tomatoes shine and makes ketchup even more delicious.

Get the fuss-free recipe: Slow Cooker Ketchup.

tomatoes at market

What are you cooking up with tomatoes?

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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  1. I love making a big batch of roast tomatoes and freeing them to add to sauces!

    • Yes! Although I prefer making roasted tomato soup when they come out of the freezer in those cold, dark days. This time of year when everyone is giving away surplus produce and the stands have great prices, I get out the turkey roasting pan and roast as many pans full as I can with peeled garlic, shallots and sweet onions in the mix.

  2. My garden tomatoes are gone! I canned plain tomatoes, tomato juice, tomato sauce, enchilada sauce, spaghetti sauce, used them in canned chili and soup, ketchup, salsa! lots of salsa, and I froze some. I’ll have to pin this post and save it for next year when I’m swimming in tomatoes. 🙂 I pretty much do not buy any tomato products at the store!

  3. This was great. I can around 70 quarts of whole tomatoes in their own juice every year. I like to keep it simple so that I can then turn them into what I want… soups, chilis, pasta sauce, anything! They are my very favorite things to grow, can, and use. Mmm!

  4. Thanks for this. I still have a bunch of tomatoes coming in from my garden that I need to do something with. These are some great ideas!

  5. Such great ways to enjoy the bounty of summer tomatoes all year round!

  6. I love that first shot, Aimee! This is such a great guide to preserving tomatoes for the winter! We all know we could do some of that so we can have summer freshness all year long 🙂

  7. Great tips! Thanks for sharing! I am sad tomato season is ending!

  8. Now I want tomatoes 🙂 Lovely post Aimee!!

  9. everything looks so good!! I have always wanted to can my own marinara- maybe this is the year!

  10. Such a great reminder! We are brimming with tomatoes here, so I’m gonna have to get busy.

  11. I so needed to read this today!! I have a ton of tomatoes!

  12. Great tips here. In the middle of Spring down here so fresh tomatoes for me but will bookmark this link for reference. Thanks.

  13. Hi! Our family owned business is the largest producer of sun dried tomatoes in the U.S. under the Bella Sun Luci label. I would have loved to have sent you some of our products to mention in this article since they are sun dried and are also a great item to have on hand in Winter when tomatoes aren’t as flavorful. Let me know if you would ever like to sample our products!

    • John Burton says

      I would like a sample of your sun-dried tomatoes. My name and address is John Burton, 1928 Cherokee Bluff Drive, Knoxville, TN 37920

  14. Awesome! Thank you so much for this article, it will be super handy! I love tomatoes, can never get enough of them and at this time of year they taste soooo good and it’s easy to find some local grow ones. I’ll definitely add these recipes on my long weekend to do list ! 🙂

    • We live north of iraq, nowadays we bought too many boxes of tomatos we used some of them as sun dried tomatos in case to keep them to winter

  15. I also store them without doing anything, just washing and keeping in the refrigerator. As soon as they are out of the deep freeze, frozen, I wash them with hot water and the peel comes off easily, very thin.

    Then I slice with a sharp knife, use it in pot meals while cooking, after chopping. That is also a good way of keeping them, without much burden at the beginning – of course if you have a big deep freezer 🙂

  16. Hi Amiee, Planting a big garden in 2016., With tons of different types of tomatoes. Thanks so much for all the great recipes. Happy’ belated’ New Year!

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