Tomato Jam

This tomato jam is one of the most popular recipes I’ve ever published. I can’t even take credit for it, the recipe came to me from a friend! It’s better than the most delicious ketchup you’ve ever tasted. I’ve updated the photos, but the recipe is the same.

I used to have a fantastic coworker named John. He was calm in the face of chaos, had a buoyant sense of humor and knew how not to take things too seriously. And, his wife Amy just happened to be my kitchen soulmate. You’ve got to love a coworker who comes attached to good people.

Amy was the first person to introduce to me tomato jam and now I can’t go back to a life without it. She gave me a jar with the recipe attached, and I am forever grateful. I use it in place of ketchup (with turkey burgers), as well as in places where ketchup wouldn’t dare to tread (try it with a soft, stinky cheese. It is life changing).

For those of you who are accustomed to preserving tomatoes, you’ll notice that this recipe does not call for you to peel these tomatoes. That is not a mistake.

The first time I made a batch, I thought I could improve on things and peeled and seeded the tomatoes prior to cooking them down. However, without those bits, the finished jam was too sweet and entirely without texture. It needs the skin and seeds. Don’t take them out.

Tomato Jam

Yield: Varies depending on the kind of tomato used, pan width and the finished thickness*


  • 5 pounds tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar
  • 8 tablespoons bottled lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon red chili flakes


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large, non-reactive pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce temperature to a simmer. Stirring regularly, cook at a low boiluntil it reduces to a sticky, jammy mess. This will take between 1 and 1 1/2 hours, depending on how high you keep your heat.
  2. When the jam has cooked down sufficiently, remove from heat and fill jars, leaving 1/4 inch of head space. Wipe rims, apply lids and twist on rings. Process in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes.
  3. When time is up, remove jars from water bath and allow them to cool. When jars are cool enough to handle, test seals. Store jars in a cool, dark place for up to one year.


*The finished yield on this recipe varies depending on the kind of tomato you use, the width of your pan and the finished thickness to which you cook it.

Related Posts:

625 responses to “Tomato Jam”

  1. What a great idea. I love tomatoes and am always looking for ways to make them go even further. I’ll definitely try this – and it’s great that there is no peeling or de-seeding necessary. Thanks.

  2. I have an unrelated question, though the tomato jam looks great I’ve been experimenting with ketchup and I’ll have to try this recipe. Raspberries are coming into season out where I am wondering if you have any exciting recipes.

    • Liv, I just read your question on the tomato jam page from last fall. Have you ever tried the green tomato/raspberry jam? It tastes just like raspberry/ jalapeno jelly!! Let me know and I’ll email you the recipe.

      • Green Tomato Raspberry Jam- sounds absolutely delicious! Would you please email me the recipe.Thank you,looking forward to topping a BL(T) Biscuit with this wonderful jam :}

      • hi Lisa ,i just read your reply about green tomato / rasberry jam could i also get the recipe please….its sounds very interesting…is it made with green tomatos as in not yet ripe or with ripe green tomatos? thank you,

  3. If I didn’t love you before (which I did, mind you), I surely do now.

    I was just thinking to myself that I needed a tomato jam recipe. And then you come to the rescue…thank you!

  4. another recipe for me to put in my ‘need to make’ file of favourites. I love a nice tomato chutney in the place of ‘tommy’ sauce…how would you say this tomato jam compares to chutney?

  5. Hi! I’m very new to canning, and I LOOOVE your blog!! I’m still in school, so because I have a very small kitchen and only so many medium-sized pots, I need to scale back recipes. Which brings me to my questions – is there a simple way to determine how many tomatoes (or apples or pears or whatever) make a pound? Thanks!

    • tomatoes are mostly water, so if you chop them up, 1 Lb of chopped tomatoes, equals 1 Pint, or 2 cups. Of course, many recipes that call for Lbs of veggies give that as the weight before you cut the cores out of them. However, for good tomatoes, the cores are negligible, so I use the 5 Lbs = 10 cups method.
      Onions and peppers are less dense, so it takes more volume of them to make a Lb.

  6. I am so all over this recipe! I had inclinations to make ketchup, but was dreading the skinning and seeding of a ton of tomatoes. (I recently just got over a bushel+ of peaches and I just can’t take it)This looks perfect for a ketchup-y replacement. Or with crackers and cheese. mmm.

  7. Oh I want to try this! My husband is insisting I take a weekend off from canning, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to find tomatoes the following weekend 🙁

  8. I am *SO* going to hunt down tomatoes now. I thought that my canning frenzy was done, but it appears that there is more to do because I must have this in my pantry for the winter!

  9. We made juice with 2 bushels of tomatoes. The leftover skin and pulp and seeds looked to have some value and the home economist in me did NOT want to toss the approx 10 cups uncooked tomato parts. I made a batch of chutney with part of it and will do the jam with the remainder. Homeric!

  10. I LOVE this!! I was just looking at my tomato plants this morning, full of ripening fruit and having already made all the salsa we can eat for the winter, was wondering what to do with them. This is perfect, and will be my weekend project. Thanks for sharing!

  11. After making tomato chutney (from Jennifer Perillo’s blog), I have realized how absolutely amazing tomato products can be. The idea of something that’s not quite ketchup but not quite as chunky as chutney sounds amazing. I may have to halve this recipe (if advisable) and make soon. Yummmm!

  12. Have enjoyed tomato preserves/jam for many decades. It was one of the few things Mom actually cooked! She did not add spices, and we just used it a any other jam. BUT, I’ve been using a spicied recipe lately, and will try your version as well.

    Question: about how much volume are you talking here on the chopped tomatoes? I usually just sort of semi-puree it (seeds, skin and all) in the VitaMix and call it a day. Since getting into that habit, I tend to go more by volume than weight.


  13. Your recipes are always so crave-worthy – yum! Quick question – it looks like you have a mix of romas and heritage slicing tomatoes. Do you think all romas would work as well, or would it cook down too much? Thanks 🙂

  14. Oh my! I have been drying to try out a tomato jam recipe since I took a cooking class where the chef raved about how it’s delicious and goes with everything. I cannot wait! Thanks Marisa!

  15. My first bout ever with tomatoes was disappointing – wrong choice of tomatoes I’m quite sure for a pasta sauce. After reading this recipe I just have to take a big breath and go for it — can’t wait for the weekend. Any particular type of tomato to use? And also, halving recipe would be okay?

  16. Fabulous! We use (sadly store-bought) tomato jam on our turkey burgers too and I’ve been looking for a recipe to make it on my own. I’m wondering if you’ve considered making this in your slow cooker, since the long slow simmer seems just perfect for a slow cooker?

  17. Holy cow, this looks fantastic! And a great Christmas gift idea, too. Someone might just be buying every last tomato at the farmer’s market next week…! Yum.

    BTW, I made “sun-dried” tomatoes Monday using your tips. Thank you! They’re delicious and are a great way to use up my bountiful harvest of Romas.

  18. Marisa, it was meant to be. After reading your reply to my question about Molly’s Conserva I ran off to the local cooperative extension to pick up my pressure gauge. When I came out of the office, a gentleman with a case of gorgeous tomatoes and several grocery bags of sweet corn said that the guy he grew them for rejected them as too ripe and did I want them. Both the tomatoes and the corn were at the perfect peak of ripeness so I swooped it all up and came home to make Molly’s Conserva. When I had the tomatoes pureed it filled my giant turkey roaster 2/3 full and took 24 hours to cook down. OMG! This stuff is awesome! I got six 6 oz jars out of it. So worth the time it took!

  19. I’ve been resistant to tomato jam; not sure why. But I am trying this tonight – your pictures & description are too gorgeous to resist. And, how jealous am I of those wide-mouth Kerr half-pints? VERY.

  20. This recipe looks awesome, but since I’m very busy this weekend do you think it would cook down with limited attention in a crock pot? I came into a lot of tomatoes from a co-worker and promised to make something yummy to share. Reviewing a few recipes, but this one is at the top of my list.

  21. This looks great. We went on our honeymoon in Portugal and there was lots of tomato jam there, served with their delicious sheep milk cheeses. I can’t wait to reproduce it and this looks really easy. I’m going to make it this weekend!

  22. Although it will be sweet and not savory, this may inspire me to try the tomato jam recipe I had saved from an old Ozark cookbook. It calls for tomatoes, sugar, lemon juice and rind, and ginger. I had been leery up till now, but will have to give it a go!

  23. This looks delicious! I had a tomato / basil jam (or maybe jelly? can’t remember) at Kitchen Kettle in Lancaster. Totally made me into a tomato jam convert.

  24. Ok, so I thought the tomato jam would be the end of it for this year – maybe some pears – and maybe sauerkraut next month. Then I decided to use some of the tomatoes for Molly’s Conserva from your previous post. So, so, so GOOD! Now I’m using the rest of the tomatoes to make 2 more batches and will run out tomorrow to grab the last of the tomatoes in the market to make jam. Thank you so much, Marisa, for inspiring me. I’ve been canning & jamming for years, but you get me excited to try new things. And you’re opening a whole new world for so many people. You’re an absolute jewel.

  25. I made this jam today and it’s wild–I love it. My dried peppers are for some reason over-the-top hot, so I reduced the amount to 1 teaspoon, and it was perfect. I ended up with 5 and a half half-pints. Thanks for the recipe, think I’ll repeat it tomorrow, when I get some more limes!

  26. So I just finished making this. Well, the cans are in the water bath as I type. I wound up with about 6 1/3 pints. Not exactly sure why I got so much more jam, but I’m guessing the culprit is the dry farmed tomatoes I used, perhaps less water to boil off? I am new to canning (this is only my second thing), so I’m hoping I didn’t screw up the ratios of stuff in the process. Anyone know?

    I only processed 4 pint jars, thinking I’d just stick the extra half pint or so in the fridge. Now I’ve got more than 2 jars to go in there. How long will it keep in the refrigerator?

    The jam tastes AMAZING though, so I’m really excited. Thank you again for the idea!

  27. You know I’ve tried tomato jam last summer and I think once was enough. It just seems too much like very sweet ketchup for my liking. Mind you, weirdly enough, it was just amazing on scones with cream. But then I have so many other jams that work very well with scones and cream that I’m not prepared to make jam just for this purpose. I think I’ll be sticking to using my tomatoes in ketchups, chutneys and relishes in future

  28. I made this a few years ago and really enjoyed it: it’s very different and you have to think how you’ll use it. I think I may make it especially for a niece who will graduate from high school next spring and who has requested a tea party like foods for her graduation party. She’s very much a foodie and I think homemade tomato jam, with good stinky cheese on little toasts, maybe a carmelized onion piece or two, would make her feel very fancy. I love canning with events in mind. 🙂 Thanks for sharing your recipe. Last time I used Mark Bittman’s and I don’t think it had the chili flakes?

  29. this is SO good!!! I threw everything in the crock pot, put it on high until boiling, then down to low for 24 hours. At about hour 16 the flavor changed to a wonderful, warm, smokey sweetness that I absolutely adore.

    I used an immersion blender and pureed the whole thing at about hour 20, then let it cook down from there. It’s now a bbq sauce consistency, and would probably be amazing on chicken. I’ve got another batch in the crock pot right now, and will be canning both batches once that’s done.

    So excited…this will be perfect to barter for some of my neighbor’s canned corn, too!

    Thank you so much!

  30. I made the tomato jam last night and am thrilled with it! I added in a few sprinkles of dried onion flakes and a little celery seed. Oh man! This is just SO good.

    Have you made tomato preserves? The sweet stuff? I found a recipe here: and made it exactly except I omitted the cinnamon. WOW, another terrific tomato goodie. I also added a combination of under-ripe tomatoes and orangey tomatoes. I’d love to know if you have a tomato preserve (sweet) tucked in your grandma’s recipe box somewhere.

    Thanks for all you do here.

  31. I didn’t understand tomato jam (never tried it) until you said “ketchup substitute” and then, I realized I could try out a meatloaf recipe that I had seen. This was my second jam and canning experiment and I’m happy with how it turned out. I had started it cooking in my dutch oven and ended up throwing it in the crockpot on low so that I could actually leave the house. I may have cooked it down a little more than I should have, oops. My meatloaf has an extra kick to it. Thanks!

  32. I just finished a batch of this, and the flavor is fantastic. I decreased the sugar a little, and added a little chipotle for the smoky flavor, and I love it. However, I had to cook my jam a lot longer than an hour and a half for it to get thick and jammy, and I ended up with about 6 half pint jars. Maybe my tomatoes were just extra watery and needed more time to cook the water off (and therefore I got a lot less yield)? I used a combination of early girls and San Marzanos. I’m really happy with the tastes that I’ve had from the pot, though, and am already looking forward to using it with a nice sharp cheddar.

  33. This is AWESOME! My tomatoes have bit the dust or rather the bugs have bit them and they are rotting on the vines, so will soon be chicken treats!

    However, this sounded so good that I traveled yesterday to a couple roadside stands to get some tomatoes to use for it and the effort was well worth it. I’m going to have to see if I can find more to make for some gifts.

    The idea of putting in the crockpot is wonderful and would let me go about my day w/o having to be on top of it.

    For a person just starting out canning, this is delicious and easy! Thanks so much!

  34. I made a batch of this yesterday and it was amazing! I found myself digging in with a spoon before it was even ready and then completely devouring the overrun jar within minutes of filling my jars. It’s amazing on crackers with some goat cheese and I mixed it into some couscous for lunch today to give it an extra kick. I definitely plan on making these again before the tomoatoe season ends this year.

    Note: my mixture took about 2 hours to fully cook down to a ‘sticky mess’, this may have been because the tomatoes I used were not super soft just yet.

    Thanks again for posting an amazing recipe!

  35. I tried this Saturday — I didn’t quite get to jammy — more like a thick sauce — my bad, I’m quite sure. My yield was 6 – 8oz jelly jars. It’s a bit sweeter than I am used to, but will certainly use it on meatloaf and Panini sandwiches with a sharp cheese and meat. Oh yes, and probably with sweet potato fries. The flavors together are wonderful — can I adjust the sugar when I try again?

  36. Sandi, I adjusted the sugar when I made it; I used about 2 1/2 cups of sugar, and though it took longer to get to jammy (about 2.5 hours, though part of that was that my stove was on really low for the first hour), the flavor was perfect. I made cheeseburgers last night to use some that didn’t get canned, and it was fantastic on those. I think I need to make more.

  37. Oops, I’m way behind in my question answering.

    Make My Day: This is definitely more jam than chutney. However, if you’re looking for a tomato chutney recipe, I’ll have one up later this week.

    Naomi: As far as I know, there’s no easy way to determine just from looking how many tomatoes will make up a pound, because tomatoes vary so much in size.

    Emily: It would be just fine to halve this recipe.

    Pete: I didn’t measure volume as I chopped, so I don’t know what the volume was. Maybe 12-14 cups? If anyone else measured as they went, please let us know!

    Another Marisa: I think you could use all romas without a problem. They were the tomato specified in the original recipe.

    Kathleen: From what other people have said, a slow cooker should work just fine.

    Arugulove: Huh, I don’t know why your batch made so much. You must have had some meaty tomatoes. It will keep a couple of months in the fridge.

    Lelo: I hear you, I love making preserves with a specific use in mind.

    Jasmine: Tomatoes do vary a great deal in water content, so that may be why it took so long to cook down and why your yield was so low.

    Sandi: You can certainly cut the sugar. It will take longer to cook down with less sugar, though.

  38. I googled the weight-to-volume issue and came up with 2.5-3 lbs to yield a quart of chopped, unseeded tomatoes. So, I went with 2 quarts, and my jam is simmering now!

  39. Marissa, thank you for this recipe; it arrived at the same time as my 7 lbs of CSA tomatoes.

    I have a couple of questions, since this is the first jam I’ve ever tried canning:

    1. I processed it for too long – left it in there for 30 minutes, not 20. Does that cause problems?

    2. Do I need to let it “age”, like pickles, for a couple of weeks before I open it? Or is it good to eat right away?

    Thank you for your wonderful blog – I’ve made quick pickles before, but I started canning this summer, and you have been a big help. Keep up the good work!

    • Don’t worry about the overprocessing. It shouldn’t have done any harm. With more sensitive jams and jellies, overprocessing can cause a too-firm set but this one should be fine. Also, this jam does not need to age. You can eat it immediately.

  40. This recipe is the greatest. I started out making one batch but ended up making 5 in total. It will replace ketchup for me and maybe even become a favorite for BBQing.
    I have a glut of tomatillos and I am wondering how well they would work in this recipe? Any suggestions or tried and true recipes for tomatillos? I’m making multiple kinds of salsa verde and looking for something different.

  41. Oh, this is quite different from what I make, neat! I adapted a basic recipe I saw all over the internets, adjusting to green/gold rather than red ingredients to compliment my Green Zebra tomatoes. The result is that we burn through jars too fast to give them away. It goes something like this:

    1 pound-ish of green zebras, peeled but not de-seeded
    4ish garlic cloves, peeled, minced fine
    2 or 3 green serranos or jalepenos
    Piece of ginger (larger than my thumb?) peeled and grated
    1+ tbsp fish sauce (I know it smells funky when added. Shhh.)
    10 oz or so sugar
    1/2 cup or so cider vinegar

    It cooks into a beautiful golden color, and is the best thing ever on toast beneath poached eggs for brunch on lazy weekend mornings.

  42. This smells AWESOME! It is currently simmering on the stove. I do have a quick question for you. Have you ever chopped the tomatoes in a food processor to make this? I was scared to try and end up with tomato mush, but boy, took me about an hour to finely chop 5 lbs of tomatoes! Hubby is really excited about the final product, so am I… Keep those great recipes coming 🙂

  43. Love this jam! Made it yesterday and it turned out fantastic. Two questions though, your yield said 4 1/2 to 5 pints and I only got two and a half pints. Not sure why. I cooked it for 90 minutes and did the recipe exactly. Also, I used crushed red pepper. Is that the same as red chili flakes? I was also wondering about maybe substituting balsamic vinegar for the lime juice?
    Can’t wait to try this with flank steak this week and I think it would be marvelous with meatloaf!

  44. This recipe is perfect for the tomatoes I have left after cleaning out the garden. I have canned all the sauce, salsa, relish, and whole tomatoes I need. But, I have not made ketchup yet, thanks.

    Love your site, Brenda

  45. GREEN TOMATO JAM…Do you think this would work with Aunt Ruby’s German Green Tomatoes? (a ripe but still green colored type). I have an abundance of these this year!

  46. Caroline: I think a food processor would make the tomatoes too broken down. I only roughly chop mine, so it takes me about 20 minutes to break down the five pounds.

    Kate: Don’t replace the lime juice with balsamic vinegar. The lime is in there as much to make the acid levels safe as it is to add flavor. Balsamic has a difference acid level than lime juice, so you can’t swap them equally. I think you’d have to add an awful lot of balsamic to make it safe.

    PattyM: I don’t see why you couldn’t try it with those German Green Tomatoes.

  47. I have to say thank you for passing on this recipe! I definitely have designs on this being a great Christmas appetizer. Pour a jar of this over some goat cheese, serve with a little tigella, and it will be the perfect blend of Christmas, the South, California, Italy — a few of my favorite things! (You need to sing that last part.)

  48. After seeing your tomato jam recipe, I happened to go to the store where the tomatoes were on sale for 69 cents/pound. It was meant to be…I bought a gigantic bag and cooked up a batch which is now residing in my freezer waiting for its moment to shine. Delicious!

  49. this is the second recipe i’ve tried from your site (the other was the apricot blackberry jam but i used peaches) and neither one of them have set up. argh! is it me? i simmered forever and kept using the plate test and it would not get to the gel stage. finally at midnight i said screw it and canned it anyways. it tastes great but it isn’t a jam. 🙁

  50. Lizette, I’m really sorry to hear that you’re having trouble getting these jams to set. The thing to note with this jam is that you essentially just cook it down until enough water evaporates to make it sticky and thick. However, it never sets hard. It’s designed to be a fairly runny, spreadable thing. Happily, they’ll both taste good, even if they don’t have the consistency you’d like.

  51. Marisa,

    This jam is spectacular. I made a batch last week and, like another poster, ate the overrun jar that night. So I made another batch the next day in anticipation of a winter of jam-love. Thanks for printing this recipe. It’s a keeper, and I even wrote it down in my fav canning book!


  52. Thanks so much for this wonderful recipe! I had to cook it for about 2.5 hours to get a sticky mess — and it’s really sticky — but I think it’s fabulous. I added some freshly grated nutmeg and about a 1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika and it turned out great — sweet, spicy, smoky and complex. The overrun jar I brought to the office disappeared in a day. Thank you!

  53. I have bought the tomatoes and can’t wait to try this recipe! I’m just trying to figure out how I’m going to use it after it’s made!

  54. I just made this today — but I think I blew it. I used fresh lime juice, not even thinking about using bottled. It does taste good 🙂

  55. […] sit right with me (apparently still doesn’t). However, I was tempted to try this one by Marisa’s great post, with pictures of a gorgeous, deep-maroon tomato jam and descriptions of the life-changing power of […]

  56. Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe! I preserved 100 lbs of tomatoes a few weeks ago and I included this method (gave you props on my blog too!). Can’t wait to explore all the ways to try this yummy condiment!

  57. Marisa – Hi, it’s Erin (the crazy person who sent you a gushing email a few months ago that you were kind enough to respond to…and not think I was crazy). Been reviewing the archives and just found this recipe. My grandmother told me a few years ago about her mother’s tomato jam – how to it was slightly spiced and both sweet and savory – they spread it on pancakes. I’ve been trying to replicate it…and this is the closest yet! Thanks for the recipe – you’re still my hero!


  58. I am a little late finding this recipe since it was posted last year, but I just had to write in and comment about how fantastic it is! I cooked it a little longer than it said to get the jammy consistency which I think was due to my tomatoes, but it tastes fabulous! I can’t wait to try it as a topping on meatloaf. I also think it would make a great barbecue type sauce for grilled chicken, and I may even give it a shot layered in a mold with goat cheese and pesto. Thanks for the great recipe.

  59. Beautiful jam and great way to use up the tomatoes from a great garden season once all of the salsa is made! Would be wonderful with Port Salut cheese and crackers – or with a pork tenderloin. Thanks for the recipe!

  60. Just made the jam and then sauted up some scallops in garlic grapeseed oil popped them on a thinly sliced and lightly toasted baguette and put a small dollop of this fabulous jam on top… DELICIOUS! Everyone loved it, even those that thought Tomato Jam was weird sounding.

  61. i have this simmering on my stove top right now. problem is – i’ve never canned before, and i don’t have any canning supplies on hand. it was sort of an impulse decision to make it at 9.30 on a tuesday night. i’m using tomatoes that i froze after last growing season. any input if i can just put the jam into freezer bags after it cools? going to cross my fingers and hope for the best. :-\ smells heavenly though!

    • Amy, you can certainly freeze the jam once it has cooled. You could also pour it off into a large container, refrigerate it and then bring it back up to temperature once you’ve gotten the jars for canning.

  62. I just made this, but I got about 1/2 the jam the recipe says. The jars in the pictures are 1/2 pt, so maybe thats why? great tasting!!

  63. Just made this and it is fantastic!! I love not having to skin and seed the tomatoes first and the texture is better than just plain tomato jam. Thanks for a great recipe!

  64. i know this is an older post–but it is fresh to me! i am making tomato jam as we speak–cannot WAIT to try it! thank you so much

  65. just as a follow up–AMAZING results. tomato jam is by far my favorite thing to can so far. completely worth the effort. i feel like this is something i cannot readily get at a store and i am proud to say that it cam straight from my garden. cannot thank you enough!

  66. If I do half pints, do I still need to process 20 minutes or a shorter time?
    Thanks- I am new to canning!

  67. Awesome!!! Had an assortment of garden fresh tomatoes and cherry tomatoes that I used for this recipe. Just finished taking the last jars out of the water bath. Love hearing those pops! This will definitely be a fall canning staple for me. Reminds me a little of my Grandma’s chili sauce recipe and so easy with leaving on the skins. Thanks for another great recipe!!!

  68. second batch of tomato jam–i used romas and got 5 whole jars instead of 4.5 like last time. made it a little spicer as well. this is such a great recipe and i will continue to spread the word about tomato jam amazing-ness.

  69. Well, it took over a year, but I finally got around to making this with some garden fresh tomatoes (a combo of Brandywine and Golden Jubilee). It took over 3 1/2 hours to reduce to a jam consistency, and ended up making 5 half pint jars. Saved just enough to have some on crackers with goat cheese. Really good, thanks for posting this!


  70. I love this!!! I added chipoltes in abode that I had processed in a food processor and cut back a little on the sugar. This is awesome on a turkey or ham sandwich!! Thanks for posting this recipe!!

  71. Batch 1 didn’t even get labeled and put away. Batch 2 is in the slow cooker. Plans for batch 3 are underway. All I can say is this stuff lives up to the hype!

  72. 3.5 hours on the stove later… my tomato jam is ALMOST reduced enough. If I had know it would be such an undertaking, I would have started earlier! Can’t wait to taste it, I bought some goat cheese to put it on crackers with!

  73. I’ve made 2 batches of this tomato jam…….the first had a smaller yield, but I guess it’s because I kept tasting it!!! The second got 5 half-pints……and all with tomatoes from my garden and peppers from my garden too. This is the first garden I’ve had in 30 years and I’m so happy, I could squeal! My ex’s elderly aunt mentioned making tomato jam, and, while I’d never had any, I remembered canning tons of tomatoes back in the day and really wanted something that would use lots of tomatoes….so, I scrounged around until I settled on this recipe……WOW! am I glad that I did…….it’s awesome! My second thought was, what would I use it on……never mind, I’ll use it on everything….the first thing I tried was meatloaf in lieu of the glaze, then biscuits, then just on toast, and it’s great just for a nibble when you want that ‘taste’ in your mouth. Thanks so much for a great recipe and guess what I’m giving for Christmas gifts!!!!
    Too many people haven’t tried Tomato Jam and I’m going to fix that for at least a dozen people!

  74. My first canning experience and I used grape tomatoes. It turned out beautifully. I think I caught the bug. DH is bringing home a flat of strawberries tomorrow and my sister-in-law is getting me a lug of peaches. Yay! Thanks for the recipe, this one’s a keeper.

  75. Hi Marisa,

    Just bought tomatoes today to prepare for a tomato jam in my tiny kitchen this evening…however, I am unclear if the lime called for in the recipe is fresh lime juice or bottled/jarred lime juice? I have seen debates on several canning blogs on fresh vs. bottled citrus, and I certainly do not want to compromise my tomatoes. Thank you!

  76. I am making this for the third time this weekend! This recipe rocks. I brought it to a party last night and it disappeared. I am making it for Christmas gifts this year.

  77. I just found this recipe and I wish I had seen it earlier today..I just got through pushing 6 pounds cooked of tomatoes through a sieve and I am now reducing the pulp from 6 cups to 3 cups….sigh..and I have to say it doesn’t look like pulp, it looks lile tomato sauce… I will definitely try this one next time!

  78. I just made a batch of this and it is so good. I’ve been loving all the comments about what to use it on, but to be honest, I can’t wait to eat it with bread and butter. Thanks for a great recipe!

  79. Made a 3lb batch last weekend and have decided a good portion of the CSA preserving tomatoes we get next week are getting the same treatment. Delicious!! I did notice when it came to the chili flakes I cut the amount in half after cutting back for the small batch and it was still a little warm for my wife (perfect for me). We decided the next batch will be a full 5lbs with the reduced amount of chili flakes. Thanks for a great recipe!

  80. I have this jam simmering in my kitchen right now. It smells soo good! It will take longer to cook down here because of the elevation, but that is not a problem at just means I get to smell this lovely jam a bit longer.

    I left a comment a few days ago about my 1st tomato jam. I hate it so much that I am actually considering just opening the jars & dumping it out…no flavor and no texture.

    Your tomato jam recipe reminds me of the tomato jam my Gramma used to make. I used to eat that on everything! Thank you for sharing the recipe and thank you for bringing back happy memories of my Gramma, “Lolla”.

  81. Ok, its done..sorry to be commenting all the time..LOL…it is wonderful!

    It took 2.5 hours to reduce, but I only got two pint jars and a half of a half pint jar….did I do something wrong maybe?

    Its not runny or saucy at all…I can hold the half filled 1/2 pint jar upside down and it doesn’t move….since I am new at that ok?

    • Karyn, the yield on this jam can vary a great deal depending on the tomatoes you use, the width of your pan and the amount of time you cook it. It sounds like you cooked it a lot more than I did, which is fine. What’s more, when I cooked it this year, I only wound up with 3 pints. So even my yield varies!

      • Thank you, Marisa. I was so worried about it not being thick enough (like the 1st recipe I tried) that I went went too far in the other direction. LOL

        The taste is so good! Next time I will trust myself to stop a bit before the cement stage. Its all good though!

  82. I made this today. I was very diligent about measuring my tomatoes. I measured them on the kitchen scale, diced, not as whole tomatoes. 10 pounds of diced tomatoes yielded 21 HALF pints plus a wee bit in the pan for tasting. It took me 5 hours to cook this down to the “just right” consistency which i didn’t mind at all because this smells absolutely divine while it is cooking. Thank you so much!

  83. This tomato jam is wonderful – it tastes like what my grandmother used to can in South Georgia. I am going to the farmer’s market and get more tomatoes today. I cooked it on low so I did not have to stay in the kitchen with it and it took 3-4 hours. I actually put it in the refrigerator overnight and finished it this morning. I used 6 lbs of large tomatoes and got 3 half pints and 4 – 4oz jars. I put some in the small jars to use for an appetizer or to give to tomato jam doubters. Thank you for a wonderful recipe and advice.

  84. I’ve got my first batch cooking away right now. I took a spoonful to taste – Wow; great stuff. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  85. Just canned my first batch….WOW! This stuff is REALLY delightful! I ended up with six half-pint jars exactly. I intend to make more tomorrow; 4 oz. jars for holiday gifts! Thank you so much for a wonderful recipe!

  86. This was far too sweet for my taste, next time I would cut sugar down considerably. Depending on your penchant for spice, I’d tread cautiously with the full tb of pepper flakes. I added Spanish smoked paprika for more savory flavor, the cloves were a bit too strong for me as well. Overall with some adjustments for my taste, this is good. I canned in the smaller jam sized jars.

  87. So excited, I made this tonight and the flavor is amazing! In Portland, Or out tomatoes are just now in full swing. I am pretty new to canning. I decreased the water bath time because I used 4 oz jars. This was based on somethings I read on other websites as well as food in jars. The jars sealed, do you think they are safe to store?
    Love your website!!!!

    • Alisa, the rule of thumb is that you don’t reduce the processing time for small jars, you only increase it for larger jars. It takes 10 minutes in a boiling water bath for something to become sterile, and if you didn’t start with sterilized jars, you’ve got to give them that 10 minutes to ensure that any microorganisms are killed. However, if your jars were boiled for at least ten minutes before you filled them, you should be fine.

  88. Somebody asked me on fb if I had a recipe for tomato jam (I posted on my wall that I was not yet done canning tomatoes. Of course, I did not, but the Q triggered me to search for several. I chose to try this recipe. I was able to make 7 half-pint jars from this recipe. While the taste was not what I expected, it definitely was very good, albeit a bit too salty for me, but then if I will use this for something like a glaze for ham or a roast beef, maybe it will be just fine.
    I probably will make some more tomorrow and use more sugar, less salt. Then I can imagine using it on crackers with some cream cheese.

  89. New to canning, Uh-Oh???
    I have a batch of tomato jam simmering on the stove as I type, but now I’m wondering whether I’m in trouble… or not…
    I used 5 lbs of chopped tomatoes. These are heirlooms*, subjected to a dry summer followed by drenching from (2) tropical storms, so I removed a good deal of cracking and scarring. Is the 5 lbs called for in your recipe before or after prep? If before, is my 5 lb batch now too low on acid to be safe and shelf stable?
    (*Using Aunt Ruby’s German Green, may not be pretty but they’re what’s in my garden right now and I’m thinking they’ll give a nice ‘smokey’ nuance to the jam.)

  90. Hello main blog person!
    I just found this recipe and am going to try it… I had a question, though, about the amount of sugar called for. that seems like a lot! I never use that much sugar in any of my other jam recipes. How sweet is the tomato jam and have you tried using less sugar or pectin? Thanks!

  91. i’m on hour 3 of simmering this jam (eeps!). i used around 5 pounds of brandywine heirlooms. should i bring the whole thing to a hard boil again or just let it simmer forever until it looks all jammy?

    • Kyna, I’m afraid I’m replying too late to be helpful. But essentially, the trick with this jam is just to cook the liquid out. So whether you do it at a hard boil or a slow simmer, the end effect should be the same.

  92. Finally, finally made this stuff. It never “jammed” up for me though. I let it sit for 24 hours in a crock pot and it was still kind of runny. It did turn into a lovely dark red and still had fantastic flavor. I put it in my Vitamix and pureed it. So now I have a wonderful, unique BBQ sauce that will still make great Christmas gifts. I really wanted the jam but I guess I can mix some sauce into whipped cream cheese and make a yummy spread? Thanks, Marisa.

  93. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. It was just what I needed to use up the final few tomatoes from this year’s garden – these were small little guys, and I wasn’t looking forward to trying to peel and seed them. It took several hours to reduce down to jam consistency, and my yield was 5 half pints. The taste is amazing, and this will become a regular in my canning repertoire!

  94. A hint? We took the lid off of our crock pot and let it simmer and have a bit of the fluid evaporated and we got a very thick product. Amazing what the stick blender does for it!

  95. I have to update my above comment. I tasted this again after it has cooled off the next morning, and the result was SUPERB! I served it during supper that day, and my husband, who is not a fan of tomatoes (raw or cooked), loved it, even plain. I also asked my SIL to taste it and see if she can market it. She never liked cooked tomatoes until she tried this tomato jam, and yes she thinks she can market it (she supplies the small stores in this area). So, thanks a bunch for this recipe!

  96. […] Tomato Jam from Food in Jars We canned our usual tomato sauce, pizza sauce, salsa, and diced tomatoes with the bounty from our garden, but I wanted to try something really different…tomato jam. It’s delicious! I keep thinking of ways we can use this: on burger, as a glaze on chicken or pork, over cream cheese as an appetizer, etc. It’s got great tomato flavor and a nice kick from the hot pepper flakes. […]

  97. Marisa- I just made this and it is absolutely the best thing I have ever canned. I want to just go at it with a spoon. And the color is amazing!

  98. I’ve made two batches of this jam, and it is really good. On the second batch, cut the sugar by 1/2 cup, and only used 1/2 tsp. chili flakes. Took longer to cook down, about two hours, but the flavor is still great. The tomato mix was about 1/2 Romas, and 1/2 heirlooms, and some from my friends garden that looked like cherry tomatoes on steroids. Will do this again next year. Thanks so much for the great recipes you give us!

  99. 3.5 pints in the canner! This stuff is awesome! A tad on the sweet side, and plenty of heat. 🙂 Thank you for the great recipe!!!!!

  100. […] Tomato Jam you say? Not quite sure? Oh my goodness. Do it. This is a new one for me this year and is perhaps the tastiest thing I’ve ever canned. And the color of the finished product is stunning. Somehow it looks like rubies. It is so good I made a second batch tonight. Marisa at Food in Jars might just have changed my life with this one. simmering down […]

  101. This is excellent! And much easier than tomato sauce or ketchup, since the peels and seeds stay in. I’m glad you cross-referenced the recipe in your tomato post this year, since I’d missed it the first time around. I cut the sugar down to 2 cups (used brown sugar for a deeper flavor), and it was nice and jammy after about an hour. Made 6 half-pints. Thanks for a great addition to my tomato canning season.

  102. Just made this tonight. Started with 5 lbs of very ripe cherry toms that I just cut in half. It took about 2 hours to cook down to 3 pints. As someone else said, the color is fabulous. Taste is like an incredibly rich ketchup. I used lemon instead of limes since there’s a ready source of lemons in the neighborhood.

  103. Finally got into the tomato jam I’d made about a month ago, and it is AMAZING! May never eat a turkey sandwich without it ever again – thanks so much for sharing this fabulous recipe! Yum, yum, yum.

  104. […] Marisa’s recipe below is nearly identical to the Mark Bittman recipe I first used. I don’t think you could go wrong with either one but since I’ve already posted about the Bittman one, I’ll give Food In Jars’ version a try. As canning projects go, this one is easy. […]

  105. I had a couple pounds of tomatos gifted to me this week, so decided to try your tomato jam recipe. Yum, it really is life changing!!! Awesome by itself, even better with a little crumble on blue cheese on a water cracker!

  106. I was asked to pick my friend’s tomatoes while she was gone. The first picking I basically just ran around giving them all away. The next batch I decided to roast in the oven ( olive oil, dried basil, onions, sea salt and pepper) and we have been eating it as spaghetti sauce….and I made tomato soup from part of it. I had already made two sheet trays which made 8 cups of sauce. Yesterday most of the remaining tomatoes seemed to have reddened up ready to work with. I put them in the oven to roast and then found your recipe for jam, and decided to give it a try as I didn’t want to go through the whole deskinning, and ricing to get out the seeds. It was late, but I just added in some things. I rarely follow recipes, but use them as an inspiration. I didn’t have lime juice but found some sour orange in a bottle. I have no idea why I have that, but I used that, and a little lemon juice, some cinnamon, and the minced ginger ( which is weird , it was the first time I had ever bought a stub of ginger and had not used it and didn’t have a plan for it. I had been at the store and thought “why have I never bought fresh ginger?” ) Anyway, I added in brown sugar and some white sugar. Then I just mixed it up and stuck it in the frig. This morning I melted some cheese toast on homemade bread in the skillet with some olive oil…and then dumped some of this mix on it. Heavenly. I was a little worried about the onions and basil but they are a great addition. Just makes it a little savory. I think I will just go and dump it in the crockpot and let it cook down and see if I can find some jars. I don’t think it will make very much. I will probably just put it in the frig or maybe even just freeze a little jar…Now I am pretty excited to go pick my friend’s tomatoes one more time before she gets back! I will make sure to give her a little jar too!

    Do you think it would matter if I diced up the green tomatoes and just added them in as well? There were a few that I could tell were just going to totally split open before they ripened on the vine. I have been making fried green tomatoes with them.

    • Linda, the concoction you made sounds delicious, but since you didn’t add the lime juice (necessary acid) and added onions, it’s probably not safe for canning. When it comes to canning, it is important to follow recipes.

  107. I just want to say that I made this a couple of months ago and I am going to have to make more already. It is so good, especially on fish. I just hope I get enough tomatoes from the garden before the season ends! Great on sandwiches, too. I know I should make ketchup for my son instead, but heck, he’s only 8. He’ll be fine with Trader Joe’s. ;D

  108. This tomato jam is THE BOMB. I made two batches before the local tomatoes went out of season and I fear I don’t have enough put up to last through the winter. This jam makes me smile; will give some as Christmas gifts, but not too many. Thanks so much for this great recipe and a fabulous blog.

  109. Marisa,

    Just found your site…yum! This is the first year I’ve really gotten serious about preserving food. I can tell I’ll be visiting here often…wonderful!

    I’m getting 75 pounds of Romas on Saturday and plan to turn some of them into this jam recipe. I’m thinking it would be a delicious filling for a baked brie for the holidays.

    Thanks for the terrific ideas!



  110. Quick update on the jam. Forgot to pick up some fresh ginger so I substituted with pickled ginger I had on hand. I think it’s a winner…but, will know for sure in an hour or so. Smells delicious!

    Thanks again for sharing.

  111. Seriously…WOW! I am processing this delicious recipe right now. I did add a hint of allspice to the mix instead of the ginger and used lemon juice instead of the lime (simply because I didn’t have any ginger or lime juice in the house). And I can’t get enough. Can’t wait to open it up for leftover turkey sandwiches this weekend. Yum. Thank you for sharing.

  112. […] cured meats were Italian, it only made sense to try some mostarda and my new favorite condiment, Tomato Jam from This stuff is addictive and oh, oh, oh so delicious! Everyone’s first […]

  113. Making this Tomato Jam a second time. First batch was awesome and almost gone so in the midst of setting up for the next batch. Thanks so much for the recipe. Yummmm

  114. I have been making tomato jam for a few years. As with most jams, results are variable according to the type of fruit used and–sometimes important to success–its ripeness. That perfectly ripe or overripe fruit of any variety sometimes fails to gel because the pectin is too low. I usually try to use about 25% underripe fruit and that usually insures gelling and decreases the cooking time which also helps preserve that fresh flavor. So, try to think about making your jam early in the season when pectin content is higher even though it’s tempting to use up late season fruit by making jam. (Not that it won’t work with late season…I’m just sayin’.)

    I enjoy Tomato Jam made with cherry tomatoes–just cut each one in half rather than chopping and proceed with the recipe. A few underripe ones will help with gelling, as will addition of the lime juice called for in the recipe. Cherry tomatoes are usually very juicy, not like the plum types, and so may take a bit longer cooking. Their skins provide a chew that I really enjoy. I like to add a few very thin slices of lime in addition to the juice.

    Seasonings: To me, the salt and the pepper flakes detract from the sweet jammy impression that I love. Suit yourself (as I know you will). I like to use a spice bag with whole cloves and stick cinnamon, which gives a beautiful clarity to the jam. Also try using orange juice plus rind/slices for a different flavor. If you have those short (1″) cinnamon sticks, put one in each jar for flavor and loveliness–nice for gifting.

    Can’t believe you’re still with me here! Thanks for reading….

    • Yes, unripe fruit helps jams “set”! Thanks for reminding me– just picked a few unripe tomatoes from the garden & threw them into the pot!

  115. This is the best tomato jam I have had – spicey and sweet! Thank you again for your recipes, I am really enjoying your site!

  116. We are down to our last jar and I was just looking at this recipe again while making my spreadsheet for preserves for next summer. 🙂 I think this may well have been our favorite preserve last year. So good!

  117. I had enough tomatoes for 3 batches of jam (this after I made a big pot of marinara sauce), so I got to test what would gel and what wouldn’t, and two different flavor variations.

    I had a mix of overripe and underripe tomatoes, so had plenty of juice. I didn’t think to strain it for the first batch but did for the combined 2nd and 3rd, so that last batch jammed up nicely while the first I added a little pectin to it out of worry. I flavored one batch according to this recipe (minus the chili), and the other was spicy with the pepper flakes, horseradish, and mustard seed. I’ll be curious to see which I like more. The sweeter one on bread just now didn’t taste like tomato at all to me, which almost was a disappointment, but I’ve also never had tomato jam before.

  118. I just came back by because I’m getting ready to make this year’s batch of this. Or I should say, batches, as judging from the popularity of last year’s, one batch simply will NOT be enough. Thanks again for sharing, it’s now one of the top recipes for canning that I have!!!

  119. This recipe was WAY TOO SALTY for me….. 1 teaspoon of salt would probably be more like it……

    • I find that 1 tablespoon of salt is the right amount for me. However, every palate is different. Sorry that you’re disappointed.

  120. 2 more questions….. Can I use powdered ginger, and do you think this would cook down in a crock pot?

    • You could use powdered ginger, though it won’t give you the kick that you can get from the fresh stuff. And I’m not sure how it would do in a crock pot. It would probably take 4-6 hours to get to a finished consistency. That’s just a guess, though. I’ve always made this one on the stove top so I don’t know for sure.

  121. Yummy! Love this slathered over avocado slices with a sprinkle of tangy farm cheese, and sometimes I wrap this up in a tortilla for lunch. Also a wonderful glaze for grilling chicken breasts.

  122. I was reading a post from the Dept of Ag. In the section regarding canning tomato’s they were firm that citric acid or bottled lemon juice be used to be sure that the acid pH level was correct. They were also stressing that it be processed at 240 degrees to kill any possible toxins. I am new to canning! Any input? I just want to keep my family okay. We live in a very hot area and want to store this for the winter.
    Thanks…. Dorothy

    • Dorothy, if you don’t add acid to your tomatoes, they do need to be processed at 240 degrees (ie. in a pressure canner). However, if you properly acidify your tomatoes, they can safely be canned in a boiling water bath canner. Because this jam contains lime juice, it is considered properly acidified and so is perfectly safe as written.

  123. I was told this was not an approved canning recipe, due to the unknown pH. I canned a 1/2 batch and thought with all that lime juice it’d be safe? This one has me baffled.
    I made it with the crockpot and love it! I used up cherry tomatoes and even though I’m not a ketchup fan, this stuff is really good!

    • Sorry, I didn’t see the post above mine.

      I’m an experienced canner, and was not worried till someone brought it up.

      • Joyce, this recipe is totally fine as far as acidity goes. Tomatoes are acidified at the rate of 1 tablespoon of lemon/lime juice per pint jar. This recipe has 8 tablespoons in it and yields no more than 5 pints. That’s more acid than is required for safety. I don’t know who told you it was unsafe, but it sounds like they’re just trying to make trouble.

        • Thank you both so much for the input. I miss-worded my post. I was referring to using fresh lemon or lime juice which was said to have a variety (un-stable) of pH levels. The Ag. Dept. stressed on using bottled lemon juice or the dry citric acid that is at a (controlled) constant level of the recommended pH level. If fresh lemon or lime juice is used then use a pressure canner and process at 10 lbs. for 15 minutes (high elevations). I assume that tomato’s are on the cusp of the low acid scale.
          I have this on the stove now, which tastes and smells sooooo good. Thank you for your site.

  124. I love the flavor of this recipe, but having trouble with the consistency. I’ve tried it twice now without the ingredients simmering down to a ‘sticky and jammy mess.’ Instead after 1.5 hours simmering the tomatoes maintain a sauce like consistency. Given, after placing a jar in the fridge it became a teeny, tiny bit more jam like but not enough to be spreadable. Again, I love the flavor, I just need it to jam!

    Any thoughts?

    • Jennifer, it sounds like you need to cook it more. Your idea of a simmer might be slightly different from mine, so you might not be cooking it as high as I do. Essentially, with this recipe, you just keep cooking until you reach the desired texture. One and a half hours is just a suggestion.

  125. “WOW!” Is that my family said about the tomato jam. I made it exactly to your recipe. I cooked it for 1 1/2 hrs. and was a nice “preserve” constancy. I ended up with 5, 1/2 pint jars. After picking 5 lbs from our garden I ended up with a combination of tomatoes ranging from heirloom to cherry, red, yellow & green. I read some where that green (under ripe) tomatoes have more pectin. Next time I will use more green to hopefully cut down on the reduction/cooking time to have more of this tomato treasure.
    Again, thanks for this site.

  126. I am getting ready to make this for the first time. Do you strain the juice before you cook the batch? Do you strain it at all?

  127. This looks delicious! Do you weight for 5 pounds after or before coring? I have five pounds tomatoes AFTER coring and chopping, which seems like a lot. Hmm. Thank you!

      • I think that it depends on the wording.

        “Five pounds tomatoes, cored and finely chopped”

        would mean something different to me than

        “Five pounds cored and finely chopped tomatoes”

        I would translate the first as meaning “start with five pounds and then core and chop” and the second as “core and chop, then weigh out amount”

        It would be clearer if there were measurements for how much chopped tomato you end up (cups or weight) with rather than the starting weight of the tomatoes. How much five pounds of tomatoes ends up to be depends on what kind of tomatoes, what size, how aggressively you trim vs. how I do it, etc. Those differences translate to a different finished product.

        That said, this is one of my all time favorite recipes. I made three batches last year and am all set to make the first double batch of the year. Thank you so much for this (and many other recipes!)

  128. Hi-looking forward to making this. Do you think it could be frozen in jars rather than giving a water bath? Perhaps not as long a shelf life? Texture change? Thoughts?
    Thank you. Kate

  129. Can you chop the tomatoes using a food processer or blender? Can you use commercially prepared key lime juice? Thank you so much. Mimi

    • It’s best not to use a food processor or blender for this, because they tend to mash and tear the tomatoes. You want to start with chunks, not a puree. It’s fine to use bottled lime juice.

    • I’m not Marisa but my 2 cents based on last year’s experience is that it works fine in a food processor. I did it this way. I was just careful not to overprocess and I was very happy with the finished product.

  130. I’m really looking forward to making this recipe, but was just wondering do you still process it for 20 minutes if you use 1/2pt jars? I’m on the newer side to canning, but I love it and want to make sure that I don’t mess anything up. Thanks!

    • Thank you so much for this recipe! It was a struggle while this was cooking to not want to just eat it up! I think I’ll have to make another batch and gift it for Christmas. I’m looking forward to a very snazzy grilled cheese for lunch I think!

  131. This recipe sounds wonderful! I do have one question, though – – – any thoughts on cutting down the amount of sugar? Not only do I tend to like my tomato ‘stuff’ (ketchup, sauce, etc.) a little on the less sweet side, but I also try to stay away from sugar in my diet overall. Thanks!

  132. Tried a small (small as in I only had 1 lb of tomatoes & they needed to find a purpose soon) batch of this last night and it is DELICIOUS! Aside from scaling down measurements, the only change I made was using brown sugar. After cooking down, it only filled one half-pint jar, so it’s obviously not going to be stored in the pantry, but rather in the fridge for the short time until it’s devoured. 🙂 Can’t wait until I have enough tomatoes to make a full batch so I can truly can some!

  133. This is amazingly delicious! I don’t eat tomatoes, but this honestly transformed them into something totally different — like a mix between super rich BBQ sauce and pepper jelly. Can’t decide whether to give it to friends or horde it all myself, but it’s definitely going in my recipe file.

  134. Hi,

    I have my own garden and a huge blackberry patch. I live alone and a lot of stuff goes to waste (my relatives and friends have their own gardens also) so I’m going to make some of this jam–also the blueberry, peach and blackberry jams. But: since I don’t have a food scale and can’t afford to buy one right now, is there another method to determine the 5 lbs?

    I also make lots of dilly beans every year–can’t have a sandwich without them! I do have a great recipe for those, from America’s Test Kitchens. Also, the BHG recipe for dill pickles turned out to be the best I ever made last year.

    I’m happy that I found your site.


  135. I am SO glad our garden runneth over in tomatoes this year!!! I was racking my brain to figure out what to do with them all when I stumbled upon your website. First I made the yellow tomato basil jam tediously chopping sweet yellow cherry tomatoes and, after tasting, it was worth every minute of the time spent. This past weekend, I made the tomato jam. My husband tried it on his pepperjack cheese while eating cheese and crackers….we also had it on our grilled burgers that evening. I plan to be very choosey as far as who I gift these delicious gems to! Thank you! I have bookmarked your site and plan to visit often!

  136. This has been in my to-do file for almost 2 years, and I’m so sad that I’ve missed out on two years of this deliciousness! I’m eating it on a grilled cheese sandwich right now – holy yum! Thanks for the recipe!

  137. I have a bunch of grape tomatoes to use and would love to try the tomato jam. Should I still use 5 pounds of them? If I have less, can I adjust the recipe accordingly? Thanks! Can’t wait to try it!

      • This sounds wonderful. Anyone tried making a sugar free version? Would Splenda brown sugar work or does it need real sugar?

  138. I have a double batch on the stove now. It has been cooking for five hours but my tomatoes were really juicy. I think it has about another hour to go-low and slow. The flavor is really delicious. I think I got carried away with the pepper flakes so if you don’t like heat you might want to adjust that. Thinking it would be delicious on cream cheese with crackers or even added to soups and stews to add a little zip and depth of flavor.

  139. I made a batch of this jam last week, and we really like it. My daughter-in-law calls it “magical.” Anyway, I was wondering how long is it okay to use an open, refrigerated jar of this jam? Thanks!

  140. I don’t have time to read over 200 comments, so I don’t know if anyone else has mentioned this, but if you really want to change your life – try adding some sweet smoked paprika to the recipe=) heaven!

    • Ack! I can’t believe I didn’t add some. Granted it has enough heat but we add that stuff to everything usually and it is always awesome! Thanks for the reminder!

  141. I made this jam for the first time last night. I cooked the tomatoes mixture for 1 and a half hours. Maybe I should have cooked it longer, as mine is still a “little bit” runny, not totally a jam, but still thickened. I expect it is still okay to use. Also, I found it to be a bit sweet – with a “candied” tomato feel. I will try it will a cup less sugar next time. But, it is so delicious! Any thoughts?

    • With a jam like this, cooking times vary depending on the water content of the tomatoes. So it may have needed more time. And you can certainly reduce the amount of sugar if you want.

  142. I just made this tonight and actually laughed out loud when I first tasted it, because it was that good. Quite spicy, though…which I’m attributing to the fact that I got my chili flakes at an Indian food market. Probably quite hot comparatively. Made about 3-3.5 pints; don’t think I’ll be giving any of these jars away!

    • It’s amazing how much variation there is in the heat of red chili flakes! So glad you like the jam, though!

  143. I’ve started this recipe and am down to the red chili flakes. Is that the same as crushed red pepper? If not I’ve got to get in the car and go to the supermarket.

    Thanks in advance, thought I had everything.

  144. Hi, I just made this recipe today and it was excellent! I forgot to put in the ginger, but it still tasted great. I’m putting some up to give away as Christmas gifts. I’ll have to get your book, glad I found your blog!

  145. I made this using purple cherry tomatoes from my garden and it was fabulous! As a first time canner I have found so much helpful information on your site. Thank you! Off to make another batch, this time with red tomatoes.

    • That’s the kind I used also. I think the purple ones are naturally sweeter so I used less sugar and am happy with that!

  146. I made this last night and it is amazing!! I’m so glad I made this recipe. I ended up with 6 half pints and a little left over for the fridge. I will say that I had to cook it down for 3 hours – probably because all of the tomatoes that I had were big boy or another ‘non-roma’ tomato. But I plan to make this again because I want to give them out as gifts and I hate to give away all of this goodness!!

  147. I had an assortment of sungold cherry, yellow pear and black cherry tomatoes, and couldn’t consumer 5 pounds worth, so I tried this. I cooked and cooked, and though it still seemed soupy, I jarred and processed. The jars all sealed properly, but the mixture is not at all jammy. After cooling, when I tip the jars, the contents are still soupy.

    Can I open the jars, put back in a pot and cook down some more, then re-process? I am hoping for something more jammy and less like a sweet salsa. Thanks very much for this and other recipes on your site!

      • The cook time on this recipe is approximate. You should cook it to the finished texture described. If it’s still soupy, cook it longer!

  148. If I made this without the chili flakes, would it be like the tomato preserves I remember my Mom making to be eaten on toast? Has anyone tried this?

  149. Just made 1/2 recipe with a mix of cherry and medium size tomatoes. It has set beautifully and the taste is out of this world. Awesome recipe…thanks.

  150. Made the tomato jam yesterday and loving the flavor but next time I need to cut way back on the chili flakes. Alas, to much heat for my family.

  151. I’m slightly bummed that mine didn’t turn into ‘jam’. Mines still a bit runny 🙁 I cooked it for almost 5 hours. It still filled 4 jars though. I love the taste of it. Next time should I just let it keep cooking?

    • Kristy, I cannot imagine how it’s still runny if you cooked it for almost five hours. Was it bubbling the whole time? Did you stir it regularly? And did you use the full amount of sugar the recipe called for?

      • I had the same experience when I made this last year – I had to cook for about 6-7 hours but I was using heirloom tomatoes which may have had higher water content. And my patience was rewarded with amazing jam!

        I’m about to make a batch today, and am considering either using the crock pot as someone else suggested, or possibly adding some commercial pectin to help the jam set, though cooking it down via patience does really caramelize the sugars.

  152. Hey there! I’ve made this before, but I’m wondering if it would compromise the canability (that’s a word, right?) to add an onion, finely diced?

  153. Hi Marisa-
    What is the reason that onion should not be added? Does it change the PH?
    Thanks- love your blog!


  154. I love this recipe! I have made a ton of batches and given as gifts the past two years! I went paleo eating this year and wondered what the effects would be if I cut out the sugar and used honey and/or maple syrup?
    Thanks! We love this on steak and roasts! Mmm!

    • You could try making it with two cups of honey in place of the sugar (honey is sweeter than sugar, so you need less). The flavor will be different, but I’m sure it will still be good.

  155. I was making this last night (second year in a row, it’s so good!) but completely forgot to add lime juice. I didn’t realize my mistake until I put the jars into the canner. Once I did, I just threw them in the fridge and called it a night. Is it okay to re-heat the jam + lime juice now and then re-process?

  156. I made this a couple weeks ago. I didn’t have any lime juice so I substituted apple cider vinegar. We just tried it on our hamburgers and it is delicious! Even my highly skeptical husband ( tomato jam… are you kidding?) had to admit he liked it and ate a second hamburger with it. Thank You for this recipe.

  157. I just finished a batch and the inital taste is AWESOME.

    Just have to add that it took much much longer than 1 1/2 hours to get the “sticky, jammy mess”. After the 90 minutes on a “simmer” I still had soup. I pushed up the heat to a light boil and just kept going till I got it reduced. I was using a large variety of smaller tomatoes so not sure if that makes a difference. And in the end I got only 2 pints out of my 5 lbs of tomatoes with a scant 1/2 cup left for the fridge.

    I will do this again – probably before the season is done. I truly understand now why the release of commercial bottled ketcup in the late 1800s was such a big deal. Not that it is hard – just time consuming. But this homemade, grown-up version is sooooo much better.

  158. I’ve made probably 4 batches of this recipe now since I started last year and just NOW realized something – your yield says 4 – 5 pints. I have always gotten 4 *half* pints. I know you say yield will vary, but I’ve consistently gotten half of what you predict. If I stopped cooking at 4 pints I’d have barely even started cooking it, and my results wouldn’t be even remotely jammy, more soupy. The texture of my finished jam is sublime, perfectly spreadable with little tiny chunks of tomato in it. I also get a much lower yield when I make red onion relish. This is making me question what in the world is going on in my kitchen now! I’m also wondering if I should process my half pints for less than the 25 minutes that pints are to be processed at?

  159. I made this today, but mistakenly processed my wide-mouth half-pint jars only 10 minutes in the boiling water canner. I was just now looking at the recipe again and see that they should have processed for 20 minutes. My jars all did seal – should I open them and reprocess, or will they be safe having processed for only 10 minutes?

  160. This tomato jam is to die for! It is the perfect blending of flavors, and the slight heat from the pepper flakes make it all the better. I had to cook mine down for quite a long time. I used locally harvested slicing tomatoes at their peak, and there was quite a bit of water that cooked out. But, in the end, it came out to the perfect color, flavor, and viscosity. Thank you for sharing!!!!!

  161. Hello! 🙂
    I am, at this very moment, making your recipe for the 4th time this summer. I discovered very quickly I did not have time to play with this all day, so after the first time, I cut them up and let them cook down in a crock pot for, no kidding, about 18 hours until I could get back to them. Doing so allowed me to cut back on the sugar (like in half) while at the same time creating a dense, amazing sweetness that has jarred up really well. That also allows us to double the recipe and just let it cook down like crazy. I currently have 2 crock pots going and we’ll put it in jars tonight, so this batch will cook down for nearly 24 hours. If you have any concerns about safety with that, please let us know, but so far, so good. When we are ready to can, we put it in a big stock pot to get it boiling so we can hot pack it, then we adjust for taste and water bath can it.

    We just bought about 12 lbs of seconds from our Amazing Amish Connection at one of the farmer’s markets and we started it last night. They’ve cooked down to half in the crock pot, whom we affectionately refer to as Mrs. Cleaver, and the whole house smells like an Italian restaurant. We’ve been pouring it over fresh chickens to bake down and mixing it with goat cheese for an amazing spread, among many other things.

    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe, you are our hero!

  162. Could you put in some garlic powder? I’d also like to be able to switch up the spices a little – using roasted fenugreek, fennel, cumin. Garlic powder wouldn’t change the acidity enough to count would it?

  163. This is my first experience with tomato jam. After two hours it was still very soupy. So, I cranked up the heat a bit and continued to stir often. I then decided to go to my computer to make sure I had followed the instructions. That’s when the trouble started. I became so engrossed in the postings that the time got away. Within about 15-20 minutes my jam had reduced considerably and was starting to stick and burn! ARGHHH! I immediately reduced the heat a bit, and started stirring. Interestingly, it was thick and a beautiful, deep red. I tasted it and thankfully no burnt taste or bitterness. NOTE TO SELF: Stay focused, keep stirring, don’t leave cooking food unattended—duh! I ended up with 3.5 pint jars. I am very pleased with the final product and look forward to doing more canning. Next project: Fig preserves!

  164. For what it’s worth:

    1) I adore this recipe, and so did everyone I gave the results to last Christmas (after they got over their suspicion. I finally told people “treat it like fancy ketchup.”)

    2) When I’ve made it, I’ve used brown sugar instead of white, and subbed half the lime juice for balsamic vinegar which preserves the acidity of the recipe but deepens the flavor along with the brown sugar.

    3) Having made four batches now, I concur with others that I need much more cooking time. A single batch on my electric stove in a deep pot, at 4 or 5 on my burner knob (so medium or just shy of medium heat – a temp where there are very slow bubbles surfacing every so often but there is not a rolling boil and the bottom doesn’t scorch) needs 4-5 hours to cook down to a dark mess and thicken a bit, but even then it’s a bit thin. This time around I added 1.5 T pectin to help beef it up a little, and cooked it another couple of minutes before putting it in jars and water bath canning it.

    4) I had no luck with the crock pot. Lid on doesn’t allow reduction of the liquid. Lid off doesn’t get hot enough even on 6 hour high. After the batch on my stove was done and canned (5+ hours) I transferred the batch in the crock onto the stove and needed at least 2 more hours at medium heat. It was still even soupier than the first batch so I added more pectin. It’s canning now.

  165. You are completely right – this jam changed my life 🙂 I adore it and have slathered it on everything. My favorite was with some simple crackers and herbed goat cheese. Heaven! Took 2+ hours to cook down to the right consistency though because the tomatoes I’m working with have quite a bit of water. I didn’t mind though because it made the house smell so wonderful!

  166. I am going to make jam this weekend. I would like to add onion powder or minced onion and garlic powder. Will this change the ph? Should I can in the pressure cooker if it does make a change?

  167. I have made your Tomato Jam 3 times. Love it. Absolutely love it. I do have a question though…is it o.k. to double the recipe that is in your cookbook? I’d like to make more at one time if that is possible. I didn’t know if it would change the cooking time or ruin the recipe to do it. I have a big jam pot and thought I could easily fit a double batch in it. So, is it o.k.?

      • Thank you Marissa. Yesterday, I picked 10+ pounds of potatoes (off of my 3 plants) and made the double batch of jam. It took longer to cook down but, the end result was fabulous. I love your recipe!

  168. Made your yellow tomato basil jam last week… So yummy! Going to try this one next week, but am wondering why the processing time on the other is 10 minutes but this one is 20? Just curious. Also, since I don’t like things too spicy, I plan to cut the pepper flakes in half. Is there a point at which you recommend tasting the jam and then adjusting the amountt of pepper flakes if it needs more? Thank you!

    • Bobi, this tomato jam came to me from a friend and the 20 minute processing time was her call. It is quite dense, which does make me think that the longer processing time is warranted.

      • Thank you. It’s fantastic! I tasted the jam about half hour into the simmer and added a few more pepper flakes (started out at half). Simmering time for me was spot on at 1 1/2 hours.

  169. This is a terrific recipe as written. I have made 56 half pints so far. I have two batches worth of tomatoes still on the kitchen counter. I use a mixture of heirlooms and romas from the farmer’s market.
    Here is a recipe from American Spoon Food, an outstanding company in Petoskey, Michigan. It makes great use of tomato jam, and is even outstanding in winter, when the only tomato approaching good is a cherry or grape tomato from the supermarket.

  170. Last summer I tried canning for the first time. Sweet hot pickles,dill pickles, dilly beans, honey apple ginger jam,tomatoes, Tomato sauce and…tomato jam. Ahhhhhh the tomato jam! I work At a Nursery and the Nursery manager had planted rows and rows of tomatoes in one of the empty fields (hense the first attempt at canning). We had crates and crates of tomatoes well into October. In my research to find out what the h*** to do with them all, I found your website…what?? No peeling, no de seeding? A gift from the fall harvest gods
    . We made 34 pints, stopped giving them away by November…” Could I have another jar of that yummy tomato jam?” “oh how about some delicious dilly beans instead, we are getting a little low” trying agilely to block the pantry door where my only remaining 21 pints are kept.
    As I dig into my 2012 tomatoes my strategic planning may exclude all other canned tomato products in order to reserve what I need to make enough tomato jam. Hmmmm enough tomato jam, is that possible? Thank you!!!

  171. Marisa – thanks for this recipe! I have a question…if I add finely chopped mixture of red/yellow/orange mini peppers (about 2 cups worth) & a few minced serrano peppers, can the rest of the recipe stay the same? Thanks!

  172. Just made my first batch today! My jars are “bathing” now, as the jars cool will it set up a little more? Or should I dump back in pan and cook longer and/or add pectin?

  173. Thanks for great recipes for Juliet tomatoes. The recipe for tomato jam says to finely chop 5 lbs. of tomatoes. Do Juliet tomatoes also need to be finely chopped and if so, what would be the best method since these tomatoes are quite small? I can’t wait to give this recipe a try!

  174. Loved this recipe! Had a huge glut of cherry tomatoes and they worked great for this. I chose to cook it in the oven using a casserole dish, uncovered. I put it in about 9pm at about 200 degrees and let it go overnight, and most of the next day as well. It reduced well and kept the mess to a minimum!

  175. I made a half batch of this today and am amazed at how deliciously amazing this is. I tried it off the wooden spoon and then immediately grabbed a piece of soft cheese to plop some on. Wowsers! Thank you for this recipe! 🙂

  176. hi, my mom and i are making up some tomato jam right now! and we wanted to know if you included any of the tomato peels in your jam. also, did you ever add pectin if it didn’t gel up? thanks

    • Yes, leave the peels in. I always specify in the recipe if peeling is necessary. And I never add pectin to this jam. I rely on the process of cooking down to develop the right texture.

  177. I made this recipe last week with my mother in law and we were both surprised at how delicious it was. We cooked it for a long while but the thermometer refused to come up to 220 degrees and it just wasn’t thickening up, so I added a few spoonfuls of low sugar pectin (about 4 tablespoons) and kept cooking until the freezer plate test worked. Worked great! Brought it in to work and people’s expressions of surprise have been so funny – everyone has liked it. I am serving it on saltines with a cream cheese based herbal dip and a dollop of the jam. I can definitely see it being really good on something like a turkey sandwich. Thanks for sharing so freely on your blog!!!

  178. I just made a triple batch the other day, I have it in the fridge waiting to finish. My question is, if my jam seems watery should I add pectin ? I cooked it on the stove for a few hours and put it in the crockpot over night, and it still isn’t a jammy consistency. Would adding more sugar be a solution ?

    Thanks !

    • It sounds like it just needs more cooking. You really need to cook it to the point where it’s just under a boil. It should be 205-210 degrees. Little bubbles, stirring frequently, to cook the water out.

  179. Delicious! I just finished making a double batch with Juliet tomatoes; I quartered them and chopped some smaller. Consensus: quartering would be plenty sufficient. This jam is subtle but bold, delicate flavors juxtaposed against strong aromatics – in a word, sublime!! Thanks, Marisa … I was so excited to not have to peel ten pounds of Juliet tomatoes with this blessed recipe – and I love your blogs and beautiful photography!!

  180. Hi there! I can’t wait to try this. I have tons of grape tomatoes that are frozen. How should I prepare them? Defrost and a quick run through a blender? I am not too keen the idea of trying to chop them all up. Thanks!

  181. I made this at the reccomendation of my sister-in law. Holy crap is it good. Next time you make chili put about 1/4 of tomato jam in it. Huge difference my best pot of chilit yet.

  182. I was surprised just how good this recipe is…. I was skeptical on the sound of it, but is turned out awesome. When I was having trouble with it thickening, I just added a little more sugar, and it set up perfect. I am making my second batch right now, the first batch was with the seeds, and skin, the second I used a food mill and am trying to have it turn out like a jelly. I put it on a Wheat Thin Cracker, with cream cheese..YUM. Thanks for the great recipe.

  183. First of all, I love your site (& have put your book on my wish list)!
    I have just finished making a batch of your tomato jam. I absolutely love it – I’m already envisioning a round of Brie smothered in the jam baked inside puff pastry… My husband found it too sweet. My ‘long story short’ question is can you reduce the amount of sugar in the jam without messing it up?

    • You can reduce the sugar a bit, but sugar does play a role in its finished consistency, so you don’t want to pull it back too much.

      • We are in the process of simmering and we are on hour 4. Just wondering what we can do to speed up the cook down process?! Also would straining the chopped tomatoes before hand help?

  184. I’m a huge fan of this recipe. It’s now a pantry staple – thankyou! I’m about to inundated with a pre-frost harvest of green tomatoes here in the midwest. Have you ever adapted it for greens? Is the acidity in green tomatoes different (which would mean I’d need to adjust the acid levels?). Much appreciate any thoughts…(and I’ll let you know how it works out!)

    • How did it turn out? I just picked a few pounds of green tomatoes before the upcoming frost and have made this jam using red ones. Crossing my fingers that you had good luck!

  185. Aha, so that’s what we did wrong….we were processing 20 lbs of tomatoes (for various uses) and skinned/seeded them all before we started making jam. Next time we’ll just chop and go! Our jam, despite 2 hrs of simmering, was runny. Also we used honey and sugar (much less than the NY Times/Melissa Clark recipe called for), and I think the honey flavor was too strong.

    Thanks! Love this site!

  186. Could I substitute a different sweetener for the sugar? Is it safe to can with less sugar? Also, would it be safe to use fresh hot peppers instead of chili flakes?

    • No, you can’t use a different sweetener, because you need the chemical reaction that sugar provides. You can safely reduce the sugar, but you don’t want to cut it back too drastically. And if you’re going to use fresh pepper, you can’t use much.

  187. I made tomato jam about 4 weeks ago and love this recipe! However, I did not water bath mine, the lids are sealed and they have been stored in a cool dark place. Would it be safe to water bath them now? I would hate to have to throw it all out, but I would hate to get sick or worse, worse…

  188. I have a bunch of grape tomatoes to preserve. My question is, can this be stored as freezer jam? And if so how long would it last? I have no canning equipment or experience. I did make two batches of freezer strawberry jam this summer, though! Thanks!

  189. i made a batch yesterday and stuck it in the fridge overnight-do i need to bring to room temp or anything before i go ahead with the water bath? thanks!

  190. OMG!!! Just put it in the jars. A bit of heaven. I used my grape tomatoes. I had a moment when it began to darken…I was almost going to grab my stick blender and smooth it out a bit…sooooo glad I didn’t. It is awesome.
    Thank you…Thank you.

  191. Can you use fresh lime juice or does it need to be the concentrated juice out of the bottle? thanks for the wonderful recipe!

    • Normally when it comes to tomatoes, you want to use the bottled juice because of its consistency acidity. However, with this recipe, I’ve includes more than double the amount of lime juice necessary for safety, so you can use fresh and not worry if the fresh lime juice happens to be slightly lower in acidity than the bottled version.

  192. Marissa, is this a recipe that can be doubled or even tripled in the pan? It’s so, so good, but it’s hard to be able to make only four half pints (if I’m lucky!) at a time. I’m wondering also about adding some garlic or onions: we found some onions in the soil (planted by a colleague) when pulling all the tomato plants out.


  193. So I tried the Tomato Jam Recipe – and I made the fatal mistake of running to town for a few items while it cooked……I came home and it had stuck and looked like it was burnt. Tasting it it doesn’t taste burnt but taste really strong and concentrated. So question for everyone is – do I make another batch and incorporate this one into it to “thin it” or do I can this little bit knowing I only use a teaspoon of the stuff on anything…Help!

  194. YUM! This recipe is fantastic! I will be making more of this to use up the remaining tomatoes in the garden. I was worried that some of my tomatoes were to ‘orange’ but after cooking the jam is still a deep beautiful red and tastes delicious! I have a new baby so I couldn’t dedicate 1.5 hours of stirring and attention so I reduced my jam in a crock pot with the lid askew (no chance of burning). I left it on low overnight, and will crank it on high for a few more hours this morning so it thickens to my liking. I will also give it one final boil on the stove as an extra food safety measure before canning.
    Thanks for the recipe!!

  195. I just made this jam and it’s in jars and one has already “popped”! I got four half pints out of the 5 pounds of tomatoes and I had no problem at all with it thickening – I just followed Marissa’s definition of simmering being at a very low boil. The recipe called for lime juice so I squeezed fresh limes; it did not occur to me that the acidity in bottled lime juice would be different. I had no fresh ginger so I simply left that out and it tastes quite yummy regardless. This was SUPER easy to make and I recommend it for someone who is not used to making jam or canning anything as a first try. I’m going to put this on veggie burgers, and brie or cream cheese as a dip. I’m sure roasted potatoes would enjoy this topping as well….and scrambled eggs. Anything that you would put ketchup on or chili sauce would be good, I’m sure. Thank you for a great recipe!

  196. My husband and I are on a quest to reduce the sugar and eliminate the grains in our diet. I wanted to make this, but I couldn’t add that much sugar. So, I used half the recommended amount of sugar, but I did it with a half sugar/half splenda mixture and 1/4 c of honey swirled in near the end. Then I doubled this recipe (WE LOVE TOMATO JAM) otherwise. I added two tbsp of smoked paprika (remember this was a double batch) and subbed half of the lime juice with balsamic vinegar. I initially started the jam on the stove until the liquid was cooked down by 1/4, then it all went in the crock pot on high overnight and on low during the next day. I elevated the crockpot lid with a couple of wooden spoons so it could reduce, retain heat and not spatter.

    This is so versatile and delicious…we love it on cooked turkey and chicken, salmon, cheeses, you name it, it’s delish!

  197. Hi,
    Just googled tomato jam and found your site. I am a big fan of slow roasting
    tomatoes but thought having a jar of jam would be nice, too. I am not a person
    who does ‘jam’ so I am unfamiliar with the ‘bathing’ part.
    So, if I do not do this process:
    How long would a jar last in the fidge?
    Can a jar be frozen till ready for use.

  198. Marisa,
    Thanks for the wonderful recipe-served it at book club with soft goat cheese, brie and crackers and it was a huge hit. I was very dubious about using this recipe initially but I have several varieties of cherry tomatoes that I needed to use. This was a great site for preserving these tomatoes instead of having them go to waste. Thanks again for the wonderful recipe and site!

  199. […] Anyway, since no new written post is imminent, I thought I could at least provide you all a few pretty pictures. In keeping with the theme of the last post, here are a few shots of my efforts to keep the harvest. Tomato jam, made primarily from cherry tomatoes, getting ready to be canned. This is a mix of sweet and spicy, though much heavier on the sweet than the spicy. I made two batches—the first was even sweeter than the second. I prefer the second. It’s pretty fantastic on a grilled cheese sandwich. The recipe came from Food In Jars. […]

  200. Thanks SO much for this recipe. I’ve just learned to can in the last few months. This is BY FAR the best jelly I’ve made! Thanks again!

  201. Thanks for sharing. A few questions from a newbie:
    1. What size pot did you use? I am trying to figure out what size I may need to buy.
    2. Can you use early girl tomatoes?

    • 1. I tend to use a wide, 8 quart pan to cook this jam in. You want something that is wide, low, and non-reactive (meaning, it’s made from bare cast iron or bare aluminum).
      2. You can certain use early girls.

      • One thing to bear in mind about early girls, though, is their thicker skins (especially if you’re using dry-farmed ones). I split 50/50 momotaros and early girls and I still felt like I was happier fishing out a few skins towards the end.

        PS, Marisa, I’m Stephanie’s (grubreport) friend who asked about canning whole tomatoes in pints. Thanks for the advice – worked perfectly!

        • Hello Fatemeh! Thanks so much for weighing in on the Early Girl issue! And I’m so glad to hear that my advice was helpful!

  202. Hi, I made this recipe a few weeks ago and I love it! Jam, brie, and Arugula sandwiches are delicious. Anyway, I don’t have a food scale, and I picked the last of my tomatoes from my garden, but I am not sure how much it is. About how many cups are in 5lbs? I am using juliet tomatoes (last time I approximated 2 cups per pound).

  203. Thank you so much for this recipe! It is fantastic. I put it in a provolone grilled cheese the other day… yum. Some of the jam oozed out of the sandwich and onto the pan and it got all thick and sticky and caramelized- it was like tomato candy. In a good way!

    Thanks again!

  204. I made my first batch last night, and it was amazing! I can’t wait to put it on a grilled cheese, or really just open up a jar and eat it straight. It may be served with brie and crackers tomorrow night too. And perhaps over eggs tomorrow morning…

  205. Had Tomato Jam at the Z Cafe here in Pleasanton, CA it was so good in my sandwich, came home that day and saw all my tomatoes on my plant and now I’ve made 3 batches of it. I keep giving it away so everyone can try it. X-mas gifts here we go. Thanks!!

  206. Am making this for the first time, first time jam ever actually, and am wondering if I simmer covered or uncovered? In the process now so am going to try uncovered but let me know for next time!


  207. I made this the other day and have it set aside for gifts. It is really good, but a little sweet for me since I don’t eat sweets. I added just a splash of balsamic vinegar to give it some depth and cut the sweetness some. Delicious.

    I’ll make this again next summer when the tomatoes come in.

  208. I used this last night as a glaze for roasted chicken (along with a little bit of dijon mustard) and I think that’s my new favorite tomato jam application. Thanks!

  209. Everybody I gave a jar to LOVES this jam! Thank you for the recipe! I was just wondering how you came up with the twenty minute processing time?

    • Tomato Jam is traditional and Portuguese,my grand mother made this every year,when was the time for the tomato picking in our farm,and this is not the correct way to make this speacial Jam ,yes it can be use as a ketchup as it has been added with other ingredients savory, but to be a delicious flavoured Tomato Jam it doesnt need any savoury ingredients,as it is naturally delicious from its original way of making it,as i stil make it myself.
      IT has a great secret.

  210. I made you tomato jam recipe yesterday.It is really nice however a little too sweet.
    I skipped the final process in the water bath. How long will it last in the cupboard or is it better to keep it in the fridge?

    • Chrissy, if you don’t run it through the water bath process, you must refrigerate it. It is not shelf stable otherwise.

    • went to Bittman’s recipe, used both yours and his…… way too much sugar for us, so used total of 1/2 cup brown sugar for 5 lbs of tomatoes, and added about 1/8 tsp cumin for depth. WOW!!

      • Hi Nancy

        I took your advice and used 1/2 C dark brown sugar and 1/8 tsp cumin (love that stuff). The result was a nice savory tomato jam full of flavor and not overly sweet.

        As for tomatoes, I used what I could gather from my garden – 3 pounds of field tomatoes and 2 pounds of grape tomatoes (which are very sweet on their own).

  211. I got 15 pounds of really ripe tomatoes for cheap at a local farmers market so tomato jam here I come. Half my BFFs are on some crazy sugar free diet so I decreased the sugar to 2 cups, added a minced jalapeño and 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar per someone else’s suggestion. It’s cooking now and smells awesome. I’m not going to can this batch because I’ll bet said BFFs are going to gobbleit up tonight. Will adjust favors and can th next batch because I still have 10# of tomatoes to use up.

  212. What size jars is the processing time for this recipe? I am always looking for recipes that don’t involve peeling and seeding things!

  213. Hi – we planted a bunch of tomato plants – and the ones that survived only produced baby tomatoes…. as I scoured to find what to use my tomatoes for I found the recipe – and a few hours later am enjoying my 5 star tomato jam!! It is amazing!! I scooped out the remainder from my saucepan (during processing) and paired it with Ewephoria Gouda + red wine…. yum!! Can’t wait to share the rest.

    • You could certainly try replacing some of the sugar with Splenda. However, do know that this recipe depends on the sugar for texture and set, so if you replace all the sugar with Splenda, you’re going to have a hell of a time getting it to set. What’s more, sugar acts as a preservative, so a batch made without it won’t last as long. Finally, I must tell you that I’ve never made it with Splenda, so I can’t guarantee your results. It might be terrible. I just don’t know.

  214. […] I happen to think that around 2 cups of sugar is perfect because it maintains the taste of the tomato. I’ve seen other recipes that call for 6 to 7 cups of sugar, but it’s really up to you. If you like your jam to be really sweet, then you’ll need more than 3 cups of sugar! Just taste and add accordingly. This is the simplest tomato jam recipe out there, which I like because you can really preserve the savory taste of the tomato. However, if you like to kick it up a notch with some other flavors, be sure to check out Mark’s recipe, Jennie’s recipe, or Marisa’s recipe. […]

  215. I LOVE this recipe, it never lasts very long in my house! I’m just using regular jam jars with screw lids as the preserving jars are expensive in London. Is there a way to seal normal jam jars to make this self safe????

  216. Just about to make the 2013 of this jam, which was the hugest hit last year. Everyone we gave a jar to raved, and asked if they could get a bigger jar next time! Last year, I dropped the sugar to 2.5 c and increased lime juice to 10T, as well as 1 tsp paprika which I saw recommended in a couple of comments – the balance of sweet/acid/spice was perfect for our tastes. This time, I mistakenly measured 1.5 T red chili flakes, and I’m inclined to “go for it” rather than make myself crazy trying to spoon some out. We do like spicy so I don’t think the taste will be the issue, but I would love to know if an additional 1/2 T of the chili flakes would impact acid levels. I am still going with the 10T lime juice (up from your 8T). I’m a pretty experienced canner in terms of the cooking/jarring part, but have never been confident about the acidity part, and rely on folks like you for safe recipes.

    • Actually increased lime juice to 12T, just for giggles. Still interested in your thoughts on acidity impact of 1 tsp paprika and and extra 1/2 T chili flakes.

  217. I only have 2 lbs of cherry tomatoes but I don’t want them to go bad. Can I still do this recipe just 1/2 it?

      • You can definitely cut it in half. I’ve not tried it with green tomatoes, so I don’t know how that will impact the yield and flavor.

        • how long to just pressure it – (not a water bath) and at how many pounds? for pints.
          also, I would like to use only honey – (half the amount of sugar) – anyone else try that?

          • Deby, this recipe does not need to be pressure canned. It has more than enough acid for boiling water bath canning. There’s absolutely no reason to process it in a pressure canner. To swap honey for sugar, reduce the volume by 3/4.

  218. we are trying this , but our tomatoes had parts that we needed to cut off. Plus I don’t have a scale. Could you please tell me how many cups of tomatoes cut up would be??

      • Well, it’s 9:16pm – still trying to cook these tomatoes down. My house smells ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL!!!! Nice addition to this Fall type day. I had some REAL juicy tomatoes I guess. My husband loves the flavor already! He chopped all the tomatoes, so we’re not giving up! We doubled the recipe since we have an overload of tomatoes. Just about ready to can. :o)

        • Deby, it’s the fact that you doubled the recipe that’s causing your troubles getting it to cook down. When you put more volume in the pot but you don’t increase the surface area, you vastly increase the amount of time it takes to reduce. Keep with it, though. It will happen eventually, though.

  219. I just made my 2nd batch of this delicious tomato jam with one snafu: after water bath and all half-pint pinged and sealed, it seems I have more of a ketchup consistency this go round vs a jammy set . Can i open and cook down more, then reprocess?

      • I just made this and it came out runny. I am about to open the jars and reboil and add pectin….should I not succumb to the allure of pectin? will that even work?
        I need it to be firm! btw i used all cherry tomatoes and 3 cups sugar instead of 3.5…

        • If it’s runny, that simply means you didn’t cook it enough (reducing the sugar also leads to a looser texture). If you want to firm it up, it would be better to open the jars and cook it longer. Pectin isn’t really necessary here, more cooking time is.

  220. Thank you for posting this recipe . I made this over the weekend and it is amazing. I took the advice of other people and added little bit of balsamic vinegar to minimize the sweetness. It’s now are go to on everything.

  221. Hi, I tried this and it is wonderful but I woud like to know if there is a savory recipe without sugar (like sun dried tomato?). I really like tomatoes without that sugary taste, too.

    • You’re really talking about a tomato paste or spread. I’m not entirely sure how you’d achieve that and safely can it.

  222. This is crazy, crazy good! I love it on cheese toast (w/ a good, extra sharp cheddar) and pairing it with some smoked goat cheese and thin flatbread is amazing. Fortunately I learned this before tomato season ended and I will make more to get me through the year and for gifts.

  223. Woah! Is this stuff good or what?! I got a bushel of canning tomatoes from a local farmer last week and made some ketchup, pasta sauce, tomato paste, and just a few canned tomatoes. I had about 5 lbs left and found this recipe and thought I would give it a try. It is absolutely amazing!!! I can’t wait to use it! After reading the comments I decided to use a bit less sugar (2 1/2 C) and a splash of balsamic and it is perfect! Thanks so much for sharing such a delicious recipe!

  224. Your recipe yielded 8 (8 oz) jars perfectly! I couldn’t imagine what those ingredients would taste like together (cinnamon and tomato??) but WOW!!! I’ll be making another batch next week! It’s gonna be so good warmed up over cream cheese w/ crackers!! Thank you for the wonderful recipe!

  225. Can this be made in a crock pot? If so, how long would you recommend on a low setting?

    If this has already been asked, sorry, I didn’t find it in the comments.

    • Joy, you could cook it down for a while in a slow cooker, but it does need the heat of the stove top towards the end of cooking in order to concentrate and thicken. I don’t know how long you’d cook it down in a slow cooker to start, though.

  226. I really like this recipe, but I wouldn’t mind if it had more of a kick. Can you safely add more ginger? I know ginger is not an acid food, so I am not sure how that would affect the overall acidity of the finished product. Thank you!

  227. Marisa, I can’t thank you enough for this amazing recipe. I had a harvest of best boy tomatoes this year and have made two batches so far. I plan to make a third because everyone I give this too is demanding more. I’ve been enjoying it with cream cheese and crackers but I ran out of cream cheese and admittedly have resorted to consuming it straight from the jar. Thank you so much!

  228. Had a few overripe tomatoes from the quicksale table at the supermarket so I fiddled the quantities and made a jar. REALLY GOOD. Try it with goat cheese on a nice cracker! I’ll be checking the farmers market in hopes of getting some good local late tomatoes and doing a full batch.

  229. Hi …. looks like a great recipe. I do not have a kitchen scale though …. how many cups would 5 lbs of chopped tomatoes be?

  230. Holy Moly … My life HAS changed with this Tomato Jam …. I think I have put up about 20 jars and am praying for 5 more lbs. of tomatoes from the garden’s last batch this year.

    This will be my “go to’ jam next year … We eat it on EVERYTHING ( even just spoonfuls from the jar

    This Recipe is Jam from the Gods 🙂

    I bought your book and am thrilled, I adore it, it’s my new treasure. It is Stunning and dreamy. I will be making my way thru it, recipe by recipe.

    I am a 4th generation canner and preserver and you have brought a new breath of sunshine to the art of “Putting Up” … Thank You Marisa XX and THANK YOU for sharing Tomato Jam !!!! XX

  231. I made this using canned crushed tomato. I was looking for a tomato jam that could be used in BLT sandwich so I only used 1 cup sugar and 1 box of “no sugar added” powdered pectin. I used citric acid in place of the lime juice 3/4 teaspoon as I was planning for 5 half pint jars. The results were fantastic. Thanks for the recipe and instructions. BTW — the canned tomato I used did not have calcium chloride as an ingredient only tomato, citric acid and salt. In 2014 I will make this with my own garden tomatoes.

  232. I made this with about 3 pounds of cherry tomatoes harvested from an abandoned plot at my community garden. I added the following proportions and not only did it come out AMAZING but it filled 12 half pint jars:

    3 pounds cherry (about 1/2 pound of them were green)
    5 TBS lemon juice (didn’t have lime but bet it’s WORTH it to get it next time!)
    2 cups sugar (could still be amazing if I used 1.5 cups instead)
    1 tsp cinnamon
    1 tsp ground ginger
    1/4 tsp ground cloves
    1/2 TBS salt
    3/4 TBS flakes

    Thank you so much for the recipe – so so delicious. I’m sending them out as Autumn/Winter gifts to friends and family. <3

  233. Does anyone know the processing time for pressure canning? I realize I can water bath can this stuff, but honestly, I can process more jars in a shorter amount of time by using a pressure cannr

  234. Made this but caramelized 3 onions first to add some extra texture/savory goodness. I also added a little cumin. It was amazing. Thanks so much for this great recipe.

    • Janice, if you added three onions to this recipe, there is probably not enough acid in the jam for it to be safe for canning. I’d recommend putting your jars into the fridge.

      • I just tried to make this recipe with the Stupice tomatoes from my garden. It has too much liquid so I let it go and now it is too concentrated. Is there anyway to save this giant pot of almost yummy tomato jam?

      • I’ve made tomato jam (my own recipe) for four years now, always include a lg. chopped (raw) onion to 5 lbs. tomatoes, can it (water bath, 15 minutes), have never had a jar spoil or make anyone sick.

        • Then you’ve had really good luck. There is not technically enough additional acid in that recipe for the safe inclusion of an onion.

  235. […] to do with my tomatoes other than freeze, can, or eat them right away. Last year I came across this recipe for tomato jam over at Food in Jars, and fell in love. Sweet, spicy, and oh so delicious! The red chili flakes are absolutely […]

  236. Finnaly made it … Just like the recipe states .
    It is one of those love or hate things , I love it.
    Thanks for posting this recipe. A great site

  237. O.M.G. I made this and as a little on the skeptical side. But when I tasted it I was sold. And sorry I was out of tomatoes to make more. I will be planting more tomatoes this year and THIS is on my list of things to make again and in several batches. On pork chops. On meatloaf. On a spoon.

    • I followed Gabriela’s ingredient proportions for 3 pounds of cherry tomatoes (from Nov 2013 post) and the jam turned out great! I had never had tomato jam and didn’t know what to expect as far as consistency, so I may have cooked mine down longer than she did because my yield was only a pint and a half. After chilling, it is still spreadable, and since making it yesterday, we’ve had it last night on pork roast that I happened to have going in the crock pot, on scrambled eggs this morning, and then again with the pork as a “BBQ” sandwich for lunch! I haven’t canned anything before and didn’t really have all the right equipment, but I added some Citric Acid to each jar before filling based on the package directions (it caught my eye by the jar display because it was specifically referencing tomatoes) and I think I got the jars boiled well enough. In the end, I’m opting to keep the jars in the fridge because I don’t know if I did everything right, but this recipe is a keeper because we have tons of cherry tomatoes each year. THANK YOU, MARISA, for a wonderful recipe and introduction it canning!

  238. Wonderful jam! I also tried with a slightly different twist, I added about a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice, the peel from 1/8th of a lemon – diced, a teaspoon of lemon pulp, and used whole cloves, but removed the cloves after first 45 minutes (We’re not big on cloves, and they were easy to remove, floated to the top. ). Added a 1/2 teaspoon of Valencia Orange peel (McCormick’s spice). WE LOVE IT !!!!

  239. Howdy. Farmer Jones here, growing organic veg and canning, in Buda, Tx. I just wanted to say that this recipe is awesome! I have “tweaked” it to a degree, to fit the palette of my audience however, I could never have created such a tomatoey gem, w/our your guidance. Thank you so much for this. I’m selling/sharing/eating this jam like crazy!!!

  240. I am interested in making some tomato jam. ESPECIALLY since it doesn’t call for seeding or peeling. Is there a conversion available to cook this in a slow cooker? I have a newer slow cooker that has a high/low/warm settings.

  241. I have a large assortment of cherry, grape, heirloom, Cherokee Purple and yellow/orange tomatoes. Can I use them interchangeably in this recipe? I noticed in the recipe for the Orange Tomato and Smoked Paprika jam, there was added vinegar to add acidity. If I were to use a mix including orange tomatoes in this recipe, would I need to add vinegar, and how much? Thanks!

    • Good question. I hope someone answers this. I was just going to use whatever tomatoes I have. I was just searching the comment section to see if there are any answers to this.

      • You can use a mix of tomatoes without making any other changes to the recipe (in this recipe, the lime juice is serving as the acid source). The only thing to know is that it may alter the yield some, because the tomatoes you suggest are higher in water content than the plum/roma tomatoes I used).

  242. Made 4.5 pints of 4 lbs of mixed heirloom tomatoes last night, reduced the sugar a bit and kept all the red pepper. Delicious! Thanks for sharing this!

  243. […] Amy’s Tomato Jam from Food in Jars, was made with Fresh Local Ontario Tomatoes (Sadly, my yard can barely grow grass, so the tomatoes came from an Ontario farm rather than my backyard.) The result, a delicious red jam that can replace ketchup or liven up eggs, grilled cheese…or any food really! […]

  244. Thank you so much for sharing your recipe. I looked over several on-line recipes for tomato jam before deciding on yours. I had an over abundance of tomatoes from my garden. The result is a delicious, savory tomato jam that I will make again soon. I made a few adjustments by adding chopped garlic, shallots, basil, and garlic salt and truffle salt (to replace salt) to my recipe. Also used fresh habanero peppers instead of chili flakes. Kept everything else the same. My yield was 6 half pint jars. Great recipe.

    • Cheryl, you have to be really careful when adjusting recipes like this one. Adding garlic, shallots, and fresh habanero could potentially make this recipe unsafe, as they are low acid ingredients and so could potentially render the recipe too low in acid for boiling water bath canning.

  245. Made this for the first time today. Wasn’t sure what to expect because I’ve never had tomato jam before – it just sounded good. I cooked it for about 1.5 hours in a cast iron pot. A little worried it’s still too juicy, but the flavor is great. Looking forward to trying it soon. Any suggestions for great combos with this jam would be appreciated.
    Thank you, Marissa. You’re a canning Goddess!

  246. Made this yesterday and I’m so glad I tried it! I had some last night with sharp cheddar, so good! I can’t wait to try it on a bagel with cream cheese or on a chicken sandwich. Thank you so much for the recipe!

  247. […] I base mine on this recipe from 101 Cookbooks, but pantry necessity often requires that I make a few changes. On the last go ’round, I reduced the number of red peppers to one, and substituted 1/2 cup of tomato jam for the 1/4 cup of tomato paste. Tomato jam has a similar consistency, but with the added depth of spices like cinnamon, clove, and star anise, which worked beautifully in the muhammara. If you are interested in making your own tomato jam, you can try this recipe from Mark Bittman or this one from Food in Jars. […]

  248. Does anyone know how to make Tomato Preserves like they do in Tennessee? I lost Mawmaws recipe and I think she used clove sticks and did not use the ginger. She also used pectin. Thanks

  249. Hello – I’ve been grousing around my kitchen for a few weeks about all the tomatoes overflowing from baskets and bowls, not to mention the yummy but overabundant orange and grape cherry tomatoes I wound up with – after not getting my garden in until mid-June. I found this recipe when looking for a way to preserve cherry tomatoes – thank you!!! I made it exactly as directed, although I had to add more pepper and the salt half-way through cooking because my husband misread the directions . . . I have three and a half pints of yummy jam. Can’t wait. I made homemade ketchup this year too – I have three pints of that, and the recipes are quite similar. We’ll be doing some taste comparisons to see what we like better I’m sure.

  250. Made this today with yellow grape tomatoes, probably could have cut down on the sugar. I added about a tsp of liquid smoke and that gave it a nice dimension too. I also added some minced garlic. It’s not yet thick like jam (it’s still cooking). Will it thicken when it cools? It’s delicious.

    • It will thicken some as it cools, but you want to cook it until it is fairly thick. Also, it’s not a great idea to add garlic to products like this, because garlic is low in acid and it could potentially make it unsafe.

  251. […] We made sauce, salsa, tomato jam, and ketchup. The tomato jam and ketchup are life-changing. We were told it was so, we made them and tried them, and IT IS SO. If ever you find yourself with a lot of tomatoes, one day of freedom, and the desire to change for the better, make this recipe. […]

  252. I just made this recipe last week, very good but I ended up adding more tomatoes last minute because I found what I had was much much too sweet, do you think this may have offset the pH? I’m new at canning and so nervous about botulism!

  253. I couldn’t wait any longer and decided to make this jam. Even got some mid-winter tomatoes from a world market to try it out. I did exactly what you had and it’s awesome. I can’t wait to try it with vine ripened tomatoes from the garden or farmers market. Thank you!

  254. So I used this recipe this summer to put up my endless mounds of cherry tomatoes (food scale is a must!). It turned out a little spicy for me personally, so next time I’ll use a pinch less. BUT, I just used this in place of ketchup to make my meatloaf, and let me tell you, it is amazing! It is impossible for meatloaf to be bland with this in it! I used a half pint in a 2 lbs meatloaf. It is even good as leftovers.

  255. […] I happen to think that around 2 cups of sugar is perfect because it maintains the taste of the tomato. I’ve seen other recipes that call for 6 to 7 cups of sugar, but it’s really up to you. If you like your jam to be really sweet, then you’ll need more than 3 cups of sugar! Just taste and add accordingly. This is the simplest tomato jam recipe out there, which I like because you can really preserve the savory taste of the tomato. However, if you like to kick it up a notch with some other flavors, be sure to check out Mark’s recipe, Jennie’s recipe, or Marisa’s recipe. […]

  256. Hi,
    I just made this with lemon juice rather than lime. Is that a problem? I also added 3T apple cider vinegar because I found it too sweet. Hopefully, that is enough acid? Thank you. The part that didn’t make it into a jar is going on my eggs in just a few minutes! Lovely!

  257. A few questions. I was thinking of oven roasting the tomatoes a bit before starting.

    Several people have added garlic/shallots/onions thereby changing the ph. Are there guidelines as to how to tweek? In other words if I add a cup of onions how many teaspoons/ounces of lemon/lime/vinegar should I add in addition?

    For example, in a corn relish recipe I replaced half the peppers with onions (as it had none) because the FDA chart of vegetable ph listed
    Onions have a ph between 5.37 and 5.85
    Green peppers have a ph of 5.3-5.93

    so I figured I could make the substitution.

    • Have to say, glad i roasted about 2 of the 5 pounds of tomatoes! Slow and low! The tomatoes that I cooked down became uniform in color, but the sun-gold and yellow pear cherry tomatoes that I roasted maintained some of their shape and the cook down time was surely shorter. I love the chunkiness that the slow roasted tomatoes added, much like a nice cherry jam! A hint of caramelization took place as well!

      It also solved another problem; some of the tomatoes were ready to use and some needed another day or two, the roasted tomatoes were stored in the fridge until needed and the remaining ripened quite nicely!

    • Esther, it’s not an approved acidification method but that is a similar pH to lemon juice, so I imagine it would serve well.

  258. I made batches and batches of salsa for husband with our cherry tomatoes because he just loves it. I am SO over salsa but still had tons of tomatoes. I made roasted cherry tomatoes, something else called Tomato Jam but is more like a really flavorful tomato paste, and all kinds of appetizers and still had cherry tomatoes! Then I came across this. I’ve made two batches and now (I can’t believe I’m saying this), I wish I had more cherry tomatoes! I hate skins and seeds but Marissa is right, they have to be in this and its actually good this way. I still have some heirloom and romas left that I was going to just dice and can to use in soups, stews, etc this winter but screw that. I can buy canned tomatoes…I can’t buy this deliciousness anywhere so I’m going to have to make it until I have no more tomatoes left. So far we have just had it with cream cheese on crackers, but I’m going to try it on a pork loin later this week…I can’t wait. Thank you so much for sharing!!

  259. Hi Marisa, I’ve made this Tomato Jam for well over 3 years now. I make it exactly as written and it’s everyone’s Favorite. My question is as I’m making 4 batches, would there be anything technically wrong with cooking a 2 double batches to save time? Or this one of those tricky things that shouldn’t be doubled. You’re awesome!

    • You could double the batch, but it’s going to take a VERY long time to cook down and you will run the risk of burning the bottom if you’re not militant about continually stirring. So my answer is, you can do it, but there are risks.

  260. I just finished making this for the very first time. It tastes just exactly as good as–maybe even better than–it sounded. I used a mix of San Marzano, Black Krim, and Beefeater, and made only minor changes to the recipe–3 cups of sugar, 1.5 tsp of dried ginger, and 2 tsp of red pepper flakes. I got seven 4 ounce jars out of it, plus a little. The first 4 jars are in the canner right now and I’m enjoying some of the “didn’t fit” on butter crackers. I will definitely be making this one again! 🙂

  261. Hi Marissa,
    This tomato jam is fantastic, I love the idea of using the oven – genius!
    I hope you don’t mind that I shared this link and a photo (with full credit) on my canned tomato jam post where I list this recipe as another option for awesome tomato jam. If you prefer not to be included, please let me know! Here’s the link if you want to check it out.

  262. so, question: why did you decide to use lime juice instead of lemon juice here? You are including it for its pectin/gelling properties, right? I recall that citrus zest also has pectin in it, so I added some of the zest to the jam as well. And is fresh juice interchangeable with bottled juice?

    I made this jam again today. It’s my favorite tomato condiment – I’m ditching homemade ketchup!!

    • My only reasoning is that I like the flavor of the limes with the tomatoes. And in this recipe, bottled and fresh juices are interchangeable because there’s twice the necessary volume required for safe tomato canning.

  263. hi. I’m loving this recipe ant want to try it but don’t have limes. Do you think nelly and joes key bottled lime juice is a good substitute or should I use lemons?

  264. Hi! I have been making your jam recipe for a few years now, and I am absolutely in love with it. I would like to cut down on the sugar content. What is the minimum amount of sugar I can use for this recipe in order for it to be safely canned? Thanks so much!

  265. Our local farm has Roma’s this time of year for .25 cents a lb and I always get about 80-90 lbs to can and to make tomato jam. Put up 24 1/2 pints of this last year. I double the recipe and it takes about 3-4 hours to cook down at a slow boil. I also add garlic, and a lot of it, to one batch. That would be 16 Tblspn of lime juice for 10 lbs of tomatoes which is plenty to make it acidic enough.

  266. this jam is wonderful! SO many tomatoes still growing, ripening, and coming in our garden and this is the perfect way to use them in a new way. I added a little cumin and some balsamic vinegar, but other than that – left it as you have it.
    These will be part of the christmas gifts I’m making. (Using your pear vanilla jam in those gift baskets too!).

    Your recipes inspire me! I love all things about cooking and this area of preserving foods is my new frontier for discovering recipes that go beyond the basics that I’ve done for years. Thanks for all your creative foodie love and for sharing it!!

  267. Oh… Just left a comment but forgot a question… (Maybe it’s been answered already, sorry if so!)

    Have you ever cooked this down using your crockpot, instead of the stove?
    I Made a double batch, careful to not let it scorch, and yes… it did take a LONG time! Totally worth it to me, but oh goodness…. a crock pot would make it much simpler, right? Just wondering if that would affect how it thickens, etc…

    Also, I forgot to mention that I just threw my tomatoes into the foo processor, (skins on, just cut in halves or quarters), then pureed then dumped into the pot… no dicing. Quicker, less mess, (at least for me!)

    thanks for your thoughts on the crockpot idea…
    robin sturm

    • I’ve never tried making it in the slow cooker, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t be done. You should try it and let us know how it turns out!

  268. Hey there,
    I tried this jam and think the spices really give it a nice flavor. However I have some family members with diabetes and worry about adding this much sugar, and it just tastes a bit too sweet for me. Can I leave out half or more of the sugar and still be safe?

  269. I made this about 5 days ago. Life happened and I had to abandon the water bath. Things have finally quieted down. Is it still good, can I freeze it? Should I reheat and waterbath? Looking for suggestions. Thanks

  270. Thanks for responding Marissa! It should be safe to eat? Anyone else care to comment? Hoping for more confirmation that it will be safe.

    • Ann, it’s a little disheartening that you come to my site, ask for advice, and then not trust the information I offer. The jam is a high acid product, the worst thing that can happen to it is that it can get moldy or start to ferment if improperly canned. If you bring it up to a hard boil, and then fill and process as directed, it should be fine. And if it isn’t, you’ll be able to tell because it will either being to mold or ferment somewhere along the line.

      • I feel like a jerk. I’m so sorry. As I stated, I did not know you answered my question. Old eyeballs, small phone….. didn’t realize it was you. Thanks again.

  271. Marisa. I just wanted to apologize. I didn’t realize you yourself answered my question. I have full faith in your knowledge and experience. No need to post this, I just wanted to apologize!

    Thanks, Ann

  272. I just tasted some tomato jam which was wonderful. The ingredients listed on the label are all you list in your recipe, except this one had Pectin and yours does not. Could you add pectin and then just bring to a full boil again (like in other fruit jams), lessening the amount of time to sort of cook down the mixture as in your recipe? Thanks so much. Can’t wait to make some . . . delicious!

    • I feel like the extended cooking time helps concentrate the flavor. I wouldn’t use pectin with this recipe.

  273. I love love love this tomato jam! My son tried some at a restaurant and wanted me to see if I could find a recipe and make it. I made it last year before the holidays once then four more times. I gave a lot away over the holidays and everyone loved it! Some good friends didn’t even hint, they outright asked for more. I am down to my last jar in the pantry so just made one recipe, the jars are cooling and another is on the stove. This is such a favorite of our family that we make two recipes at a time and hide it. Thanks for all of your great recipes. Love your book, Food in Jars, as well.

  274. Oh my god. Thank you so, so much for this recipe. I’ve been looking for a tomato jam recipe for eons and here you are! I am over the moon! I was wondering, do you think it would be alright to add an onion? Thank you so much. Ahhh I feel like your recipe was the rope that has pulled me from the pits of the inter-webs where I have languished, looking for a tomato jam recipe. Thank you so much for putting how long it lasts as well, a lot of recipes don’t do that. Hope you have a lovely day,


        • You need to refrigerate the batch to which you added onions. It’s too low in acid to be safely preserved in a boiling water bath and so could potentially harbor botulism if stored at room temperature.

  275. This is absolutely great stuff! As is often the case, the first batch I made — the “accident” — turned out to be the best thing I’ve ever made. The subsequent 2 batches were really, really good, but nothing like the first. What I think happened the first time was I either didn’t have enough tomatoes, or their water content was low, and I only got 1 1/2 jars. But, it was exquisite! Maybe because the other proportions were full? It was rich and intense. I did it late in the season, so there were no good field-grown tomatoes left to try to recreate the accident and I refuse to use anything in the grocery stores. Next summer, for sure… I ended up giving the one “first batch” jar to a foodie from New Orleans, who raved about it the whole time he was in California! Now that’s success. Thanks for a wonderful recipe that will be in my Christmas give-away baskets this year.

  276. I am actually looking for what Americans call jelly conserve. In Australia we make jam from fruit including tomatoes, sugar aond sometimes add in things like pineapple or ginger or extra lemon. It is used as a spread on bread not as a sauce when cooking main meals. Thank you anyway. I will keep looking.

  277. What is the shelf life of your tomato jam?
    Also I added a little olive oil to the process for flavor.
    Is this safe

    • It’s generally not a good idea to add oil of any kind to a preserve that has not been designed to include it. It can inhibit a seal or cause the product to spoil more quickly.

      Without additional oil, this tomato jam keeps well for at least 2 years on the shelf. The oil will surely shorten that shelf life.

  278. […] I happen to think that around 2 cups of sugar is perfect because it maintains the taste of the tomato. I’ve seen other recipes that call for 6 to 7 cups of sugar, but it’s really up to you. If you like your jam to be really sweet, then you’ll need more than 3 cups of sugar! Just taste and add accordingly. This is the simplest tomato jam recipe out there, which I like because you can really preserve the savory taste of the tomato. However, if you like to kick it up a notch with some other flavors, be sure to check out Mark’s recipe, Jennie’s recipe, or Marisa’s recipe. […]

    • I’ve never canned anything before and was wondering if I could skip the boiling process if I refrigerated the jars after they cooled down from the stove. I know it would have to be used fairly quickly tho, right?

  279. Hi Marisa, I just started making jam just a couple of weeks ago. I started with papaya that my neighbor gave me and it was too sweet. So I’m learning to taste first and then add more. I then made mango jam which came out great and then made strawberry and that was wonderful, and yesterday I made zucchini jam which took so much time shredding them, but I put the jars in the frig. I did not know you can put yours in the cabinet. Was I suppose to put the others in the cabinet. Could you put your tomato in the frig or should I just put it in the cabinet like you said. This is so much fun making jams.

    Thank you,


    • You can only process jams for the cabinet if the recipe has been designed for a boiling water bath canning process. This tomato jam was created to be safe for boiling water bath canning. I don’t know if your zucchini jam was, but chances are good that it needs to be stored in the refrigerator.

  280. Hi Marisa, I just started the tomato jam. I really don’t know if I had 5lb’s of tomato’s, but I chopped them up good and I used lemon instead of lime. I measured all the dry stuff, but used a little less. I also chopped up my ginger very fine. I only used 1 1/2 cups of sugar. I have my jars already and the pot for the bath. Oh btw, I did give my zucchini a water bath for 5 minutes per recipe and Marisa, it came out great. Two of my neighbors loved it and gave one to my daughter which she loved. You can put it on anything, meat, sandwiches, cheese. Oh so good. I just hope your recipe comes out good, but if not its my fault and then I will try again. It has hour and 1/2 to go and I will let you know how it came out. This is so fun to do. I also want to make an apple butter recipe. If you have one could you send me. I would love to give you my email, but everyone on here would see it. Do you have an email I can talk to you about jarring things. I’m not that good on the computer and I can’t believe I got to reply to which took me awhile. I thank you again.

    Have a great day.


  281. Marisa, I made the tomato jam, but when you open the jar do you put it in the frig or do you still keep it out in the cabinet.

    Thank you


  282. You said when the jam is done, you said to put in a cool dark place. So where do you put yours. I thought you could put in a cabinet which is dark and cool place.
    Sorry to bother you so many times, but like I said, I am new at this.

    Thank you and have a good.


    • Sorry, I read your note wrong. Now I understand. I will not bother you anymore. My next thing I want to make is apple butter. I have 8 apples which said to cook in a crock pot on another website. So I may try that. Take care and thank you for all your advice. Sorry again for all the questions.

  283. Hi Marisa! I was just wondering if I could use any tomatoes? A mixture of full size and cherries maybe? Thanks!

    • You can use any tomatoes you want. Just know that the yield will vary depending on the water content of the tomatoes you use.

  284. Would making substitutions like brown sugar or ground cumin and adding 2 tsp of fish sauce or a few cloves of garlic significantly change the ph?

    • The garlic could impact the pH. I don’t think any of those other changes would make it unsafe, though.

      • Thanks Marisa! I’ll add some citric acid to counter the garlic. I love your tomato jam. It’s so wonderful that I use it for presents.

  285. Marisa,
    Do I need to add any citric acid at all or does the lime juice suffice? Also, can I cook in pressure cooker instead of hot water bath?

    • You don’t need citric acid in this recipe, the lime juice adds plenty of extra acid. And there’s absolutely no need to pressure can this preserve. Because lime juice raises the acid content, the finished product is well below the pH cut-off of 4.6. So the boiling water bath is fine. To use a pressure canner would be overkill.

  286. Hello! Love your site! I’ve made this recipe and enjoyed it, although it came out a little sweeter than I like. I have tons of cherry tomatoes ripening, and am concerned that it will be inedibly sweet if I use them. Can I reduce the sugar? I’d still like it to be safe for long-term storage, though. Any suggestions?


  287. I’ve been canning since the spring thru your books, starting with rhubarb jam and chutney, and I just finished up some batches of peach BBQ sauce, peach salsa and classic dills this week. I’m new to it and your books have made it so easy and fun, so thank you! Looking forward to tomatoes, do you think I could cook this jam in the slow cooker if I left the lid ajar? Thanks again!

    • I’ve never done the tomato jam in a slow cooker, but I’m sure you could. It will take hours, though.

  288. Hi I made this jam but my kids think it tastes too much like ginger snaps. So I was thinking about adjusting the spices. Do you have any suggestions? I think the cloves overpowered it for them. Or was it that I grated the ginger with a microplane. I would like to make it again, so I am wondering how to adjust the spices. Maybe 1/4 tsp cloves? Thanks for your help.

    • Anne, it’s probably the cinnamon and cloves that makes it taste like gingersnaps to your kids. I’d leave those out next time and then taste and adjust as you cook.

      • Thanks so much for responding. I am definately making this again and will try to adjust it for them. I tried making another recipe I found on pinterest but it was a big fail. I have your book and love dreaming about what I might make next. Thanks for sharing all of your recipes on line too. I am planning on doing the red onion jam and the peach salsa next.

  289. Hi Marisa. I’ve been enjoying your recipes. I’ve been canning over 39
    Years and normally can 450-500 jars of food yearly. I’ve done everything with tomatoes except ham and was excited to see this recipe. I have a quick question. I used Roma tomatoes as I thought they’d be thicker and better for this recipe. I followed the recipe and after 2 hours of cooking my
    Kettle was full of fluid. I drained off 12.3 cups of water. I hated to waste the tomatoes and knowing they need the sugar and lime juice to be safe I added again. 1 1/2 hours later my kettles full of water again. How do I get it to the sticky jam stage. I normally make over 150 jars of various jam in the summer with no problem. I’m stymied and hate to
    Waste this. Thanks. Terri

    • I don’t even understand how it was possible that you had more than 12 cups of water from a recipe that starts with just five pounds of tomatoes. If you didn’t follow the recipe, I can’t help you.

  290. […] been re-reading Marisa’s Food in Jars book in preparation to make jam this weekend and her Amy’s Tomato Jam was niggling around in the back of my mind. I have never had tomato jam and it both sounded sort of […]

  291. […] Tomato jam is one of my favorite homemade condiments. I serve it with cheese. I use it as a dip for roasted sweet potato chunks. I spread it on egg sandwiches. I stir it into vinaigrettes. I use it to glaze baked chicken. However, until a few days ago, one of the few things I hadn’t done with it is spread it on pizza in place of a more traditional sauce. And what an absolute shame that was! […]

  292. Just looking through the comments (I’ve made this recipe every year for the last five and only today took a look at the comments – ha!). I always use the slow cooker for this combo and it turns out great. It takes a bit longer in my older slow cooker but in the newer, larger crock pot it takes about 4 hrs unless you have really watery tomatoes.

  293. I had a really quick question I am making the tomato jam and I use the 5 lb of grape tomatoes It is taken over an hour and a half now and it is still not to a sticky consistency. I was wondering if I did something wrong or if it can take longer for it to boil down I had it on a very low simmer I have now raised the simmer to a higher one

    • You need a pretty aggressive simmer. I will occasionally even do a hard boil, depending on the amount of liquid that the tomatoes are putting off.

  294. Hello!
    I made a tomato jam recipe found on this site that we loved so much, I remember it differently, was there another recipe at one point?

  295. Hi Marisa, This is my second year making this incredible jam. I didn’t get a huge tomato crop out of my garden however and am wondering if I use the best store-bought tomatoes I can find, do you think I’ll still have successful results? (Yes, I knoew that’s going to be pricey!) My family cannot handle it if this isn’t available all year 😀 and extended family requests it, too!

    • It is fine to use tasty store bought tomatoes in this jam. I’ve made it several times with grape tomatoes from Costco and it’s been great.

  296. First year canning anything on my own–Pandemic pantry–have grown my own tomatoes for years.
    This recipe is the BEST!
    I decrease the sugar a little as I prefer less sweet and it does take a bit longer to get all happy and sticky but worth the wait.

    I used so far on a turkey burger, avocado toast, and grilled cheese sandwich.
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge to the novices of the world.

  297. I never got around to making any tomato jam this year. All of my slicing tomatoes are long done for the season. But I still have sauce tomatoes growing. Would they work or would they be too dry? Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Partners

    Fillmore Container banner ad EcoJarz banner ad Awareness Lift banner ad McDonald paper banner ad