TOMATOES WHOLE/HALVED (IN TOMATO JUICE)



Preserve tomatoes whole (or halved) in tomato juice using a pressure canner or water bath canner. This recipe can be used for all tomato varieties, including roma, beefsteak, round/field and cherry or baby tomatoes, although the “meatier” tomato varieties (like roma) are recommended for the higher yield, appearance, consistency and flavour.
  
Ingredients for  BOTTLED TOMATOES WHOLE/HALVED (IN TOMATO JUICE)

Yield: 4 cups
(1 Litre/Quart)

Yield: 18 cups

(4.5 Litres/9 Pints)
Yield: 28 cups
(7 Litres/7 Quarts)
Tomatoes
1.3kg (3 pounds)
6kg (13 pounds)
9.5kg (21 pounds)
Tomato Juice
Varies
Varies
Varies
Salt, Finely Ground (Optional)
1 teaspoon
4 1/2 teaspoons
7 teaspoons
Citric Acid*
1/2 teaspoon
2 1/4 teaspoons
3 1/2 teaspoons
*Citric acid can be replaced with bottled lemon juice: add 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice per pint/500ml jar (2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice per quart/litre jar);
OR replace citric acid with a vinegar that has a minimum 5% acidity: add 2 tablespoons vinegar per pint/500ml jar (4 tablespoons vinegar per quart/litre jar).
Note: vinegar flavour is present in the bottled tomatoes when used.
Citric acid is recommended if available.

METHOD:
1.  Clean jars (or bottles) and equipment by washing in hot soapy water and rinsing well before use.
2.  Wash tomatoes. Discard spoiled tomatoes (damaged/spoiling tomatoes will affect the flavour, reduce storage period and increase risk of spoilage). Remove tomato cores. Dip tomatoes in boiling water until skins split, then place into a bowl of cold water. Remove skins. Leave tomatoes whole or slice in half.
TIP: Set tomato skins aside to dry in a dehydrator. They make a tasty, rich, red tomato powder!
3.  Place lids into a bowl and cover lids with boiling water. Remove the lids from the water when you are ready to place them onto the jars to seal.  
HOT PACK (RECOMMENDED):
Usually tomatoes are peeled and left whole, but can be cut in half if large, as they do shrink during cooking.
4.  Place pre-prepared peeled tomatoes into a large pan and add enough tomato juice to cover the tomatoes. Heat on medium and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Keep hot until ready to fill jars.
5.  Remove jars from hot water and place onto a heatproof surface i.e. tea towel.
6.  Into each quart (or 1 litre) jar, add 1/2 teaspoon citric acid (or 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice) and 1 teaspoon finely ground salt (if using).
7.  Fill jars with hot tomatoes, filling to 1.25cm (1/2 inch) from the rim of each jar.
TIP: use a jar funnel to fill jars.
8.  Fill jars with hot tomato juice (from the tomato pot), filling to 1.25cm (1/2 inch) from the rim of each jar.
RAW PACK:
Use peeled tomatoes whole or sliced in half (quarters if very big tomatoes are hard to pack into the jars).
4.  Pour tomato juice into a pan and heat until hot. Keep hot until ready to use.
5.  Remove jars from hot water and place onto a heatproof surface i.e. tea towel.
6.  Into each quart (or 1 litre) jar, add 1/2 teaspoon citric acid (or 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice) and 1 teaspoon finely ground salt (if using).
7.  Fill jars with pre-prepared peeled tomatoes, filling to 1.25cm (1/2 inch) from the rim of each jar.
TIP: use a jar funnel to fill jars.
8.  Fill jars with hot tomato juice, filling to 1.25cm (1/2 inch) from the rim of each jar.
9.  Using a non-metal utensil, remove any bubbles and add more hot tomato juice if required to correct the headspace if it dropped below 1.25cm (1/2 inch) from the jar rim.
10.  Wipe jar rims with a damp paper towel to remove any food residue.
11.  Remove lids from hot water and seal jars i.e. twist to secure “fingertip tight”.
12.  Process jars in water bath or pressure canner as per charts below:
BOILING WATER CANNER (WATER BATH):
13.  Return jars of bottled tomatoes into the pot of boiling water and boil for the processing time stated below. Start the timer once the water comes back to a full boil.
14.  Turn off the heat source once the time is up. Remove jars from hot water after 5 more minutes. Cool jars overnight on a heatproof surface i.e. wooden board or towel. Do not adjust lids during this time.
PRESSURE CANNING (DIAL OR WEIGHTED GAUGE):
13.  Place sealed jars into the pressure canner and secure the pressure canner lid. Put onto heat and vent for 5 minutes (begin timing once the white steam is constant). Then add weights (or cover) and bring to the required pressure level for your altitude (see charts below). Once the pressure is reached, process for the time stated in the charts below for your altitude. Reduce/increase the heat source to keep the pressure at the constant level.
14.  Turn off the heat source once the time is up. Allow the pressure canner to return to zero and then remove the lid (be careful, lid and canner will be very hot). After 5 more minutes, remove jars from the pressure canner and place them onto a heatproof surface (i.e. wood board or a towel). Do not adjust lids during this time.
15.  After 12-24 hours: check jars have sealed before labelling and dating clearly.
16.  Store jars of bottled tomatoes in a cool, dark and dry place (i.e. pantry) for up to 12 months. Jar lids should remain tightly sealed during storage, and not flex up or down when pressed (which indicates jar seal failure, do not consume).
17.  Refrigerate jars upon opening and consume contents within 2-3 days.
   
Processing Time for Tomatoes, Whole/Halved in Juice in a Boiling Water Canner

Altitude Processing Times
Packing Style
Jar Size
0-1000ft
1001-3000ft
3001-6000ft
6000+
Raw Pack
& Hot Pack
< Quarts (1L)
85 minutes
90 minutes
95 minutes
100 minutes

Processing Time for Tomatoes, Whole/Halved in Juice
in a Weighted Gauge Pressure Canner

Altitude Pressure Levels
Packing Style

Jar Size

Processing Time
0-1000ft
>1000ft
Raw Pack
& Hot Pack
< Quarts (1L)
40 minutes
5lb
10lb
25 minutes
10lb
15lb
15 minutes
15lb
Not Recommended
  
Processing Time for Tomatoes, Whole/Halved in Juice in a Dial Gauge Pressure Canner

Altitude Pressure Levels
Packing Style
Jar Size
Processing Time
0-2000ft
2001-4000ft
4001-6000ft

6001-8000ft

Raw Pack
&
Hot Pack
< Quarts (1L)
40 minutes
6lb
7lb
8lb

9lb

25 minutes
11lb
12lb
13lb

14lb

 
Author: Megan Radaich          
Image credit: Megan Radaich          
Learn More: Introduction to Pressure Canning Guide, available HERE

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