How To Make Tomato Ketchup At Home?

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I often make cutlets as evening snacks for my kids. They have just one or two cutlets at a time. But, use a copious amount of ketchup to eat it. And of course, when they are bored, they sometimes reach out for ketchup and pour it in a bowl to just lick it with their fingers and eat away their boredom. While brands like Heinz are free of preservatives, most of them use Sodium Benzoate (INS211), Xanathum gum ( INS415), Sodium Alginate ( INS401) and other additives to preserve and maintain consistency. And when kids eat a lot of ketchup, you would want to look out for healthier alternatives that are relatively additive-free.

So, three weeks back, when tomatoes were available for just Rs.15 per Kg, I decided to make some tomato ketchup at home. Here are the step-by-step instructions for the same.

how to make tomato ketchup

I used a 3-litre pressure cooker for making the ketchup with 2 kg of tomatoes. But, it was filled to the brim. If you have a 5-litre cooker, it would be better to use it. Also, opt for stainless steel or hard anodized pressure cookers and not aluminium. This is because aluminium will react with the acidity of the tomatoes and leach excessively. Also, avoid using new stainless steel Kadai as it may leach nickel and chromium. This almost stops after 10-15 uses.

We measured and used the ingredients to provide exact measurements for the recipe. However, depending on the ripeness of the tomatoes, the quantities may vary slightly.

As mentioned, we bought tomatoes for just Rs. 15 per kg to make the ketchup. At this price, it is far inexpensive making ketchup at home. Using 2 Kg tomatoes and other ingredients, we got around 1.25 Kg ketchup. Comparing it with the price of Heinz, it would cost at least Rs.300 for such a quality of store-bought ketchup. But, if you do not consume a lot of ketchup and a 500 ml bottle lasts for 3-4 months at your home, then, it may not necessarily be worth the hassle.

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How To Make Tomato Ketchup At Home?

Time Needed : 1 hours 00 minutes

As mentioned, we have used 2 Kg of tomatoes for making the ketchup. For flavour, we have added garlic, onion and Kashmiri chilli powder. Optionally, you can add celery as well. To balance the flavours, we have added sugar, vinegar and salt. Vinegar acts as a preservative too.
Compared to store-bought ketchup, the consistency will be a bit loose. You may find it a bit watery at the top of the bottle. So, you may have to stir/shake it and make it uniform before using it.
Store the ketchup in an airtight container in the fridge and ensure it doesn’t come in contact with moisture. When stored this way, it lasts for 1-2 months without any extra preservatives. The exact quantity of ingredients used is given along with the instructions.

  1. Clean and Chop The Tomatoes

    Clean 2 Kg of tomatoes in running water and wipe them dry. Then, cut it roughly into at least 8-12 pieces each. Transfer it to a pressure cooker. Use ripe tomatoes and avoid ones that have a greenish tinge to them. Ketchup made from unripe tomatoes will taste different from store-bought ones.

  2. Clean and Chop Other Ingredients For Enhancing The Flavour

    Take 50 gm of onion, 15 gm of garlic and 1.5 tablespoons of Kashmiri chilli powder and add them to the pressure cooker. This comes to approximately 1 medium-sized onion and 10-15 garlic cloves.

  3. Pressure Cook For 3-4 Whistles

    First on a high flame and after the first whistle, on a low flame, cook the tomatoes and other ingredients for 3-4 whistles. You needn’t add water to it as the tomatoes will release sufficient water for cooking.

  4. Blend Thoroughly

    If you have a hand blender ( immersion blender), blend the boiled ingredients thoroughly to a fine consistency. Else, allow it to cool down and blend it using a mixer grinder.

  5. Pass The Blended Mixture Through Sieve

    Even after blending, the crushed seeds and skin would remain in the mixture. This will affect the smooth consistency of the ketchup. Hence, pass the content through a sieve into preferably a non-stick or a triply stainless steel Kadai.

  6. Balance The Flavours

    To balance the tanginess of the tomato puree, add 8 tablespoons of sugar, 3/4 tablespoon salt and 6 tablespoon vinegar. The quantity may vary depending on the ripeness and water content of the tomatoes.

  7. Boil The Mixture Down To A Thick Consistency

    On a low-medium flame, boil the mixture down to a thick consistency similar to that of store-bought ketchup. Stir frequently, especially if you are using a stainless steel Kadai. Taste the ketchup and if needed, add more sugar, salt or vinegar to balance the taste. Avoid boiling on a high flame because the thick puree may splatter all over. (Talking from experience as I boiled on a high flame and the puree splattered and scalded my hands while stirring.) It took us almost 45 minutes on a low flame to reduce the ketchup to the desired consistency.

  8. Store In A Dry, Airtight Container

    Once the ketchup cools down, store it in an airtight container and keep it in the refrigerator. We got almost 1.25 Kg of tomato ketchup using 2 Kg of tomatoes.
    Use a dry spoon to take the ketchup. Avoid keeping it on the countertop for long when you take it out for use.

  • Pressure cooker ( minimum 3 litres)
  • Hand blender or mixer grinder
  • Nonstick or Stainless Steel Kadai
  • Spatula for stirring
  • Airtight container for storage
  • Tomatoes-2 Kg
  • Onion- 50 gm
  • Garlic- 15 gm
  • Kashmiri Chilli Powder-1.5 Tablespoons
  • Sugar-8 Tablespoons ( Alternatively use brown sugar or jaggery. However, it may alter the taste of the ketchup)
  • Vinegar- 6 Tablespoons
  • Salt- 3/4 Tablespoons

2 thoughts on “How To Make Tomato Ketchup At Home?”

  1. Black pepper or garam masala not added?
    Vinegar to be added last when mixture cools down and is of desired consistency.

    • Garam masala and pepper isn’t necessary for basic ketchup. You can add vinegar towards the end when boiling it. Before you switch off the gas ensure that it is of the desired consistency.


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