DIY Simple Homemade Ketchup Recipe

5 from 76 votes
Jump to RecipeJump to Video

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

This simple homemade Ketchup recipe is not only healthier than its store-bought competition, but it is also so much more addictively delicious as you can control the exact amount of sugar, salt and spices added to the sweet tomato blend.

a bunch of tomatoes and two bottles of homemade ketchup

I could write an ode to tomato ketchup – it’s the condiment that we all need in our lives, even if it doesn’t appear in most food photos (it’s just not super glamorous is it?). It’s a guilty pleasure that I like to add to so many dishes, though! And this simple homemade ketchup recipe is one of my favorite DIYs for allowing you to be 100% in control of the ingredients.

homemade ketchup in a bowl

Store-bought ketchup is known for having quite a lot of sugar and salt in it and, for people that consume it a lot, I know that it can be a worry not to have control over the ingredients. What’s worse is that the sugar used within some budget store-bought bottles of ketchup is often not even ‘sugar’ and instead use high fructose corn syrup – yuck.

two bottles of homemade ketchup

This recipe isn’t sugar-free, because I think that ketchup needs the sweetness to counteract the acidity of tomatoes and provide that signature ketchup taste. Without sugar, you’re basically making a slightly less reduced homemade tomato puree/tomato sauce, which – if that’s what you want – then I’m all for that.

Just be aware that if you do want to use a natural sweetener like maple syrup, this will affect the overall flavor of your homemade ketchup.

homemade ketchup in a bowl and a tomato bunch

Overall, that’s one of my favorite things about being able to make homemade ketchup though; you can be in control of exactly how much sugar, salt, and spices you add to the mix. For either more healthy ketchup or one that’s slightly more decadent.

I even make mine COMPLETELY from scratch, using juicy organic fresh tomatoes (rather than using store-bought homemade tomato paste), because I find a sense of calm of being 100% in control of every single ingredient used in this homemade organic ketchup.

organic stem tomatoes

However, if you do want to cut a few steps from this DIY, then feel free to use some store-bought tomato paste. Either way, the ingredients list for this tomato ketchup DIY is short, sweet, and to the point. The answer to how to make ketchup at home is definitely a simple one.

Simple homemade Ketchup recipe

Where To Use This Homemade Ketchup

Okay, this section feels slightly redundant because I know that we’re all experts in how to use ketchup on pretty much everything ever. I’m definitely not one to judge what you’re eating your ketchup with – just make some additional suggestions for you.

  • One of my absolute favorite ways to eat this ketchup is with homemade crispy oven-baked fries. Sometimes classics are classic for a reason, and this is one of my absolute favorite ways to eat ketchup. I sometimes even chuck on some cheeky homemade mayonnaise too because – why not? And I sometimes even add it to these Rosemary Garlic Crispy Roasted Potatoes.
  • These Rainbow Vegan Tacos or meat-free tacos: 4 ways recipes could definitely use a spoonful or two of some ketchup – yummy
  • I totally wouldn’t judge you for having some homemade ketchup with this Creamy Vegan Mac & Cheese – It’s not something I’ve ever tried, but one of my friends swears by ketchup with ANY pasta dish.
  • And let’s not forget the other classic combo of delicious tomato ketchup with a burger. And this time I’m suggesting this fully-loaded Mushroom Bun Burger (easily veganized without having a fried egg!)

If you’re wanting some ideas for how to use this homemade ketchup recipe with vegetarian options:

Let me know in the comments below – what is your favorite way to eat ketchup?

How to Make Ketchup At Home

The short answer is – really simply. But I know that’s not going to cut it so here is the full method for making your own delicious homemade ketchup recipe. The entire recipe uses nine ingredients, not including salt and the majority of those are herbs/spices that are likely already in your kitchen.

The entire process takes around an hour and will yield 1.5 cups of homemade ketchup. The homemade ketchup can then be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for one month (although mine never lasts that long).

The Ketchup ingredients

the ingredients to make a simple homemade ketchup
  • tomatoes – cherry or others (I used organic)
  • apple cider vinegar – this adds a bit of sour flavor
  • brown sugar – this brings sweetness  (some people use maple syrup for a refined sugar-free version. However, I have to admit I prefer the taste with brown sugar)
  • a clove bud and ground cinnamon
  • onion and garlic powder
  • celery seeds, chili powder (or cayenne pepper powder), and salt

How to make ketchup

Start by washing the tomatoes and removing their stems.

a large glass bowl of organic vine tomatoes ( cherry tomatoes)

Add the tomatoes to a large bowl and blend them  (I used Organic Cherry Stem Tomatoes) with a handheld immersion blender. You could also do this in a food processor.

Pass them through a sieve to remove the seeds and chunks of the skin. This yielded 3.5 cups of tomato juice for me.

homemade ketchup

Add the tomatoes into a large saucepan over medium heat and bring to a slow boil. Then simmer and reduce for about 45 minutes. Stir occasionally.

homemade ketchup

Add all the other ingredients and stir well. The spices and flavors combine to give you that signature tomato ketchup flavor.

Note: If you are using ready-made tomato paste, you can start at this step, as it does not need to be reduced.

adding the spices and flavours for a simple homemade ketchup recipe

Keep over medium heat for another 8-10 minutes and cook, stirring occasionally.

how to make ketchup at home. delicious homemade ketchup in a large pan on top of a stove

When you achieve a consistency you like, remove from the heat.

homemade ketchup in a large pan. A simple DIY for how to make ketchup at home- the perfect tomato ketchup recipe

Leave it to cool down then transfer to an airtight container or bottle and keep refrigerated. That’s literally all it takes to make delicious homemade ketchup – so you can see why I’m so enamored.

Adding homemade ketchup in a bottle

For me, this recipe yielded 1.5 cups of homemade ketchup.

Homemade ketchup in two bottles

Other Simple DIY Recipes You Might Like

It feels wrong to label myself the DIY queen – but I’ve certainly spent A LOT of time over the past couple of years making a massive array of DIYs. From DIY virgin coconut oil to this health-boosting wonder turmeric tincture, and even organic rose water. I even make non-food DIYS like this All-Natural Soothing Skin Balm for Dry Skin.

I have a few pages of DIYs available on the blog (including nut & seed butter, every possible use for a coconut ever -or so it feels-, and more) so feel free to head over to that section if you want to peruse more.

If you try this homemade ketchup recipe, then I’d super appreciate a recipe rating, and any comments or questions. Also, feel free to tag me in your re-creations @AlphaFoodie.

Simple Homemade Ketchup

5 from 76 votes
By: Samira
This simple Homemade Ketchup recipe is not only healthier than its store-bought competition, but it is also so much more addictively delicious as you can control the exact amount of sugar, salt and spices added to the sweet tomato blend.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 24 Tbsp (1.5 cup)

Ingredients 
 

  • 6 cups tomatoes I used organic cherry vine tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 whole clove bud
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp celery seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp chilli powder or cayenne powder

Instructions 

  • Wash the tomatoes and remove their stems.
  • Add the tomatoes to a large bowl and blend them with a handheld immersion blender. You could also do this in a food processor.
  • Pass them through a sieve to remove the seeds and chunks of the skin. This yielded 3.5 cups of tomato juice for me.
  • Add the tomatoes into a large saucepan over medium heat and bring to a slow boil to reduce them for about 45 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  • Add all the other ingredients and stir well. The spices and flavours combine to give you that signature tomato ketchup flavour.*
  • Keep over medium heat for another 8-10 minutes and cook, stirring occasionally. When you achieve a consistency you like, remove from the heat.
  • Leave it to cool down then transfer to an airtight container or bottle and keep refrigerated for up to a month.

Video

Notes

  • some people use maple syrup for a refined sugar-free version. However, I have to admit I prefer the taste with brown sugar as it does affect the flavor.
  • * If you are using ready-made tomato paste, you can start at this step, as it does not need to be reduced. Just use 1.5 cups of tomato paste. 
Course: DIYs
Cuisine: Condiment
Freezer friendly: 5 Months
Shelf life: 1 Month

Nutrition

Serving: 1Tbsp, Calories: 17kcal, Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 100mg, Potassium: 97mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 314IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 6mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Leave a comment

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

Recipe Rating




80 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Perfect timing to use tomatoes that keep on giving. I blended the cherry tomatoes in a blender and ran that thru a food mill. I cooked down the juice for about 1 hr. When cooled I added the basic vinegar, brown sugar; I changed up the spices to fit what I had on hand. After adding the vinegar the tomatoes became too thin so I cooked it down another 10min. Thank you for the basics of how to make ketchup. It is way better than any store bought.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment, Elayne. Glad you liked the recipe and adjusted to what you have a hand 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    We love this recipe. It helped us use up a ton of cherry tomatoes last year. My question is, our tomato sauce from 6 C tomatoes sometimes comes out to way more than 3.5 C of tomato sauce after the blender and strain step. We do use a vitamix, though, so was that a typo? Is the spice ratio specifically for 3.5 C of sauce then? What would you recommend in this case. Otherwise, this recipe is fantastic.

    1. Hi Jill,
      Your tomatoes must be so juicy! I recommend sticking with the spice ratio for 3.5 C of tomato juice. If wanted, double the whole recipe (7 cups juice, etc), or if you have some juice leftover, just enjoy it fresh or add it to soup/stew.

    1. Hi Kristel,
      I hope you are enjoying the DIY world.
      While it is possible, this recipe wasn’t created with canning in mind. In general, you can water bath can ketchup for 15-25 minutes (depending on altitude). I recommend referring to the USDA guidelines and other official sources for more guidance. Let me know how it goes if you give it a try.

  3. 5 stars
    Can I can the ketchup? So it lasts longer then 5-6 months. I’d like to make larger batches so I don’t have to make it as often. I go through a lot of ketchup

    1. Hi Hunter,
      While it is possible, this recipe wasn’t created with canning in mind. In general, you can water bath can ketchup for 15-25 minutes (depending on altitude). I recommend referring to the USDA guidelines and other official sources for more guidance.

      1. Hi Katie,
        It’s best to use it in about 1 month, keeping it in the fridge. If you make a big batch, you can also freeze it.

  4. Karen
    Hello! We have hundreds of Tumbling Tom little tomatoes. We are wondering if you can “can”this ketchup to be stored on a shelf for a longer period of time. We just made a double batch, and cannot wait to try the ketchup, but you can only eat so much ketchup in a month! Freezer space is at a premium! Thanks!

    1. Hi Karen,
      While it is possible, this recipe wasn’t created with canning in mind. In general, you can water bath can ketchup for 15-25 minutes (depending on altitude). I recommend referring to the USDA guidelines and other official sources for more guidance.

    1. Hi Bonnie,
      Clove is an aromatic spice coming from the flower buds of a tree. It might be named as “whole cloves” or “clove grain” in different stores.

      1. Hi Jerry,
        Some tomatoes contain more liquid than others, you may have to simmer it for longer to reduce the liquid. You can also skip this step and use store bought tomato paste instead, if you prefer.

      1. Hi Kay Anna,
        While it is possible, this recipe wasn’t created with canning in mind. In general, you can water bath can ketchup for 15-25 minutes (depending on altitude). I recommend referring to the USDA guidelines and other official sources for more guidance. Let me know how it goes if you give it a try.
        You can use yellow tomatoes but keep in mind the color of the homemade ketchup will also be more yellow.

    1. Hi Jessica,
      It might need to be reduced a bit longer to achieve the consistency you like. Depending on how much water content there was from the tomatoes and what kind of saucepan you used (larger ones allow for faster evaporation), you might have to simmer the mixture for over 1 hour.