Tomato Butter


Like homemade ketchup, but WAY better



For all of you ketchup lovers out there – get ready for your new favorite condiment. In my latest series, I’ve been exploring how people from around the world eat tomatoes. Since tomatoes are so ubiquitous, I knew that the submissions would be full of possibilities. However, this tomato butter recipe still managed to surprise me.

My new obsession with tomato butter is thanks to Deehanna from Canada. Growing up, Deehanna actually hated this condiment, but in her family loving tomato butter was basically non-negotiable. In her childhood home, Deehanna says there seemed to always be a jar of homemade tomato butter on the table for breakfast and lunch. This homemade delicacy was usually prepared by Deehanna’s grandmother, who would even give out jars for Christmas. Due to this, Deehanna now associates tomato butter with happy times spent with her family. Since her grandmother has been diagnosed with dementia, however, Deehanna’s family keeps the happy memories of her alive by making fresh batches of tomato butter.

Thankfully, it’s fairly easy to make your own tomato butter at home. You’ll start by slicing a ton of tomatoes in half and adding them to a large pot, along with sugar, vinegar, and pickling spices like coriander, allspice, and chilies. From here, you’ll boil everything together until the skin of the tomatoes is wrinkled and can be easily removed. Carefully peel the skin off of the tomatoes and then, well, you just keep boiling and boiling. Once the mixture has thickened, that’s when you know your tomato butter is ready for action.

Homemade tomato butter is a bit like ketchup, but so much better. The texture is certainly chunkier and reminds you of a jam or jelly. Plus, the flavor is much more complex thanks to the pickling spices. Deehanna’s family loved to enjoy a bit of tomato butter for breakfast along with toast, eggs, and bacon. However, I see tons of possibilities here. I say, go crazy and add a bit of this to a burger, grilled cheese sandwiches, a BLT, or your next charcuterie board. Honestly, there’s nothing that tomato butter can’t do. Feel free to swap it in for any occasion where you might want ketchup.

Watch the Video

Tomato Butter


  • cheesecloth


  • 16 oz ripe tomatoes
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • Tbsp salt
  • 3 Tbsp pickling spices (combo of spices like red pepper flakes, mustard seed, coriander seed, dill seed, black peppercorns, bay leaves, allspice berries) tied up in a bag with cheese cloth
  • 1 cup white vinegar


  • Cut tomatoes into chunks.
  • Cook all ingredients on med-low heat.
  • Remove peels as they naturally fall of tomatoes.
  • When the mixture is thick, remove from heat.
  • Remove spice bag.
  • Cool and eat as you would anything with ketchup.
Course: Breakfast, Snack
Region: North America
Keyword: Kid Friendly


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