Canning Tomatoes

by Michelle K.      August-20-2012

Canning your own tomatoes is the best thing you can do for yourself, out of all the canning projects you might consider taking on. Do it!


  • 2 1/2 - 3 lbs fresh picked, ripe tomatoes, peeled
  • 1/2 tsp per quart, 1/4 tsp per pint citric acid


  • Wash and peel your tomatoes and set them aside.  See steps above on a quick way to do this.
  • Prepare your jars, lids, rings and canner. If you are new to water bath canning, or it has been a while, be sure to refresh your skills from a reliable and official source to guide you through this process. My tips and tricks can be found here.
  • In the bottom of each quart jar put 1/2 tsp citric acid (or 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice). If you are using quart jars, put 1/4 teaspoon citric acid (or 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice). Fill your hot jars with the tomatoes, pressing them in firmly, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove any bubbles and adjust the headspace one last time.
  • Clean the rim of the jar thoroughly, apply your hot lid, and then the ring. Tighten the ring just until "finger tip tight", not too tight, but not loose either.
  • Process your jars in a hot water bath for 45 minutes measuring the time after the water returns to a full boil. Adjust your processing time as necessary depending on your elevation.
  • When 45 minutes is up, turn off the flame on your canner and take off the lid.  Let the jars rest in the water bath for 2-3 minutes before removing them.  This will prevent boiling over due to a drastic temperature change.  Remove your jars from the water bath to a cloth covered counter. Let them cool completely for 12-24 hours before testing the seals. Any jars that do not seal properly are still perfectly good to eat, just keep them in the refrigerator.
  • Store your canned tomatoes in a cool dark place. These tomatoes can be eaten immediately, no wait time necessary.


Prep time: 10 minsCook time: 45 minsTotal time: 1 hourYield: 1 quart or 2 pints