Canning Tomatoes

My parents have canned tomatoes for so many years, yet I have never stopped long enough to see just how they do it, so this summer I finally did.  And you know what?  It’s not that hard at all.  If you have always thought canning tomatoes (or anything for that matter) is really hard, it’s totally NOT.  Their method is tried and true and we have been eating tomatoes canned like this for many years. My homemade spaghetti sauce starts with these tomatoes.

So, for those of you who may get your hands on some good ripe tomatoes this summer and want to try your hand at canning, this one’s for you!

First, you’ll need a big tub of fresh picked tomatoes. These are a mix of Better Boys and Romas, grown right in the backyard at their house. 

Drop them in hot water for about 3-5 minutes to get the skins off easier.  While you are starting this process, sit the canning jars into a hot oven. Mom sets hers at 170*.   The jars need to be hot when the tomatoes go in.

Throw your lids into a pan of hot water and let them sit.  Not boiling, just good and hot.

My dad gets in on the action too and peels the tomatoes.  They are a team with this garden stuff.  Peel and chop into a big pot.   If you loved seeing my mom’s hands in the chicken and dumplings recipe, you will definitely love my dad’s sweet hands.  They are strong and hard-working.  These are the hands I grew up with.  My hands look remarkably similar to my dad’s, freckled just like his, with long fingers.   I get my coloring and height from him.  He is 6′ 5″ tall.  Well, he used to be. 🙂

Thank you ALL so much for the sweet comments on my mother’s hands last week.  I told her about all of those wonderful comments and she couldn’t believe it.  She thinks her hands are ugly, but I told her differently. All of you had such fond memories of some similar hands that YOU grew up with.  That is priceless!

Both of those beautiful sets of hands are hard at work.  Me, I’m taking photos. 🙂  Seriously, they have done this so many times, they have it down to a science.  Chop those tomatoes up in a big pot.

Simmer them for about 30-35 minutes until the tomatoes cook down really well.

Now it’s time to add the tomatoes to the hot jars, one at a time. These are quart jars with wide mouths.  You can find all the canning supplies you need at Walmart.

Add one teaspoon of salt to each jar.

Be sure to leave a little room at the top of the jar for expansion. 

My dad wipes off the neck of the jar, you don’t want anything to keep them from sealing properly.  Wipe them clean. Then add one of those lids from the hot water, pressing it in place.

Then grab a ring to finish it off. 

As the jars start cooling, you will hear them pop and that is the seal being formed.  You can look at the center of the lid too and see it is sucked down in the middle.

There you have it!  Beautiful, red, delicious, jars of tomatoes all ready to use during those cold winter months when fresh tomatoes are just a sweet memory.  We use these in everything from spaghetti sauce, to chili, and soups.

Delish!!  I hope some of you who may have wanted to try this will do it. You could probably find a farmer’s market with lots of fresh tomatoes at one time.   Not that hard, just a little time consuming.  We have rows and rows of canned tomatoes and beans sitting here waiting to be used and that is such a great thing to have around.

I’m up at my parent’s NC mountain house today, enjoying the quiet,  watching hummingbirds flutter at the feeder, while my mom, aunt and uncle shell black-eyed peas. Mom and my Aunt Mary have already put up (in the freezer) 40 quart bags of fresh corn.

We made fresh salsa out of all those tomatoes too and man, was it good.  I could make a meal off of fresh salsa. We use Concord Foods salsa packets (HOT!) from Walmart or most grocery stores carry it.  Easy, just add tomatoes and onions.  Click here to see an old post about it.

This is what summer is to our family!

- Rhoda


  1. Rhoda, thanks for posting this! Canning tomatoes is on my to do list for this summer, hopefully all from our garden. I didn’t realize you could do it without extra canning supplies, so I’m excited to know I can do it with the things I have! Enjoy your time in the mountains, sounds wonderful!

  2. i missed the post that had your mom’s hands, but my first thought when seeing your dad’s hands, was “that’s so precious” to have a picture of your dad’s hands working like that! i would love to can some tomatoes, but have always been afraid to do it! thank you for the tutorial on it, i just might be brave enough to try it! the jars of tomatoes are so beautiful!

  3. Ok. Margie beat me too it. I read about the canning, but the hands got me. To be around such experience. To hear so much wisdom. Maybe its me, but I am so drawn to those who have paved the way before me.

    Great post Rhoda!

    Rashon aka Mr. Goodwill Hunting

  4. I noticed your mom’s hands, too, but didn’t say anything. They made me think of my own sweet grandmother who is gone but left me with many, many wonderful memories.

    I’m going to try your mom’s 170 oven method for sterilizing the jars. I also noted that she put the jar in a pie pan to avoid the tomato juice mess. I’m going to remember that, too!

    Are the jars so hot that processing is not needed? Please let me know because if I can avoid getting out my big old water bath canner, I’m all for it!

    • Paula, they have been canning tomatoes like this for years. The hot jars are all that is needed & the lids seal once the jars start cooling. Mom said you can hear them pop. that’s it! If you follow these directions you will be fine.

      • My Mom taught me how to can tomatoes this way and I have been canning them for 30 years now. And, I can’t do it without remembering her sweet hands as well.

  5. I love canning. I can’t wait until the tomatoes come in this year.

    If you want, I have a great recipe for tomato soup that uses canned tomatoes. The ultimate comfort food.

  6. I am loving these photos with your folks’ hands, Rhoda. Absolutely beautiful. When I look at my hands these days, I see my mother’s hands. My right hand in particular. Some of the most compelling photos I’ve ever seen are those with beautifully aged faces and hands.

    I used to can tomatoes every Summer. One year I got a wild hair to can a few jars of cherry tomatoes. We always planted a couple of cherry tomato plants for the kids. They loved going up to the garden for the little tomatoes.

    Back to my canning story….those tiny tomatoes where absolutely beautiful, canned whole. I only did a couple of quarts and I’m sure you know why. It sure was time consuming peeling all those teensy maters.:-) So, it was back to the regular guys from then on!

  7. Before you mentioned your moms hands, I was already thinking how sweet. Reminds me of my grandmas hands. Thanks for the tutorial.

  8. Thank you so much Rhoda for posting about the”canning” process!! It sure does take me back….. My 86 year old Mother was raised on a farm in South Georgia…. we spent soooo many summers there… “putting up” and “canning” was the order of the day!! I loved it …. even as a little girl and then in my teens….. the food fresh from the garden was amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂 Have a blessed week in the Mountains… enjoying that awesome family of yours!!! Terri

  9. The photos of your mom’s and dad’s hands are winning the prize with your readers! And rightly so. Would you allow me to use the photo of your mom making the dumplings in my a post on my blog? My planned topic is growing old together. I’ve left you my blog address if you’d like to check me out first. 🙂

  10. What a great post! Thank you, Rhoda. I’ve always wanted to can tomatoes, but I thought it took special equipment and boiling the jars in a water bath, etc. It sounded like too much work. LOL

    Now that I see how simple it is, I’m going to give it a try.

  11. We love all the fresh garden produce. Our tomatoes are behind this year but have finally started coming in a little more plentiful. I don’t can tomatoes – I freeze. I do plain tomato sauce and a pasta sauce. So yummy over the winter!! Waiting for silver queen corn – it’s a job cutting it all off the cobs, etc. but I love it!


  12. This is seriously awesome. I’ve always wanted to can and appreciate the simplicity of your parents’ technique. Beautiful photos. Now, are you willing to share that salsa recipe? 😉

  13. Rhonda,
    can you post your salsa and your tomatoes spaghii sauce.
    thank you,
    Your parents remind me of my mother and father. Mother has passed on so my little sister helps dad do the canning and we all get beans, tomatoes, pickles and corn from my dad at the end of the season for the winter. I love it and I love my dad.

  14. Thanks for this tutorial, Rhoda! I always wanted to do this but had no idea. You made it look easy. How do you store the tomatoes and how long do they last?

  15. Thank you so much for sharing Rhoda, i think this year i will finally have enough tomatoes to can some!

  16. Vickie H. says:

    Looking at the photographs of those strong and gentle hands took me back so many years and brought tears to my eyes. My dear, sweet grandmother, now gone 10 years, could work magic in a kitchen. Growing up with her, we lived on the canned vegetables and fruit and frozen corn and black-eyed peas she put up every year. I miss her so much. And when you mentioned everyone at the house in the mountains sitting around shelling peas, I was suddenly 12 years old again, just one of several in a circle, shelling and listening to my grandmother sharing stories from the Bible, teaching us about Jesus. What a foundation of faith she laid for all her children and grandchildren!
    Thank you, Rhoda, for sharing your family traditions with us.

  17. Elizabeth H says:

    I love this post and love seeing your parents, even the hands. What a wonderful family you have.

  18. Your parents’ hands are beautiful and the canned tomatoes look yummy! God has you back in your parents’ home for a reason.

  19. You make your summers sound absolutely idyllic. I wish it was the weekend all over again

  20. I haven’t canned tomatoes in a few years but will give it another go this year. I love your parents technique! I LOVE the tip to keep the jars in a hot oven!! I will have to try that this year. Your parents are so sweet. I enjoyed your post today!

  21. I love this post. So interesting that they can do this without all the big pots and equipment. I wonder why the salt is added separately to each jar instead of to the pot? Tell me, does she stir the jar of tomatoes once the salt is added?

    My grandmother use to can homemade tomato juice. When she had company she would serve a small glass of juice with dinner. (She had juice glasses that matched her glassware. Her alternative to tomato juice was cranberry juice with a small scoop of rainbow sherbert. Very festive!)

    • Lindy, that is the way she does it, just dumps in 1 tsp. salt, no stirring. Don’t ask me why, she just does. It seems to work.

  22. Seeing your father’s hands reminds me of that old country song, “Daddy’s Hands”. 🙂

    Mary Ellen
    The Working Home Keeper

  23. This is so sweet. I can still see my mother’s little hands canning tomatoes. I never took the time to learn to cook when I was younger, but she made the best biscuits, chicken ‘n dumplings, and big lima beans!! And she canned everything. Now that my twin grandsons have to have foods without gluten, dyes, preservatives, hormones, etc., (they have P.A.N.D.A.S.) I wished I had paid more attention to her cooking. Thanks for sharing your folks with us today.

  24. sweet memories – for me and for you.

  25. Ronda Garner says:

    I would LOVE the salsa recipe from the tomatoes….any way you could share it????
    Thanks a million!
    Ronda G.

    • Ronda, I did an old post about it. Salsa packet from Walmart by Concord Foods, see the link above that I added.

  26. Your Dad’s hands remind me of my father-in-laws. He has freckles on his hands as well. He just turned 91 last month. If you want to freeze tomatoes, just wash them and leave them whole. When they defrost the skin comes right off. Great for sauce in the winter.

  27. These are great photos, a beautiful reminder of all the years of work and cans of tomatoes that they have accomplished in the past. So nice how history lives on in hands and in recipes.

  28. Rhoda,

    When you posted the post with your mother’s hands, I wondered if you realized how treasured that picture would become when those hands are gone. And now, the precious hands of your daddy. I think both these pictures speak volumes about the hard working, loving life your parents have lived. I dare say that when your parents are gone (as are mine) these will be among your most loved pictures! So touching.

  29. Becky in 'Bama says:

    my mom and grandmom never did much in the way of canning – but boy oh boy we had a ‘deep freeze’ bounty of veggies. I can still feel the sweat behind my knees and my sore fingers and thumbs from long hours of sitting and shelling, plucking, husking and scraping (while listening to the ‘stories’ on daytime t.v.) – followed by sweltering hours in the kitchen ‘blanching’ all that stuff and carefully bagging everything careful to not drop a morsel of anything! And how we taped newspapers to my grandmother’s kitchen walls to keep down the corn splatters as we prepared creamed corn. Yum-yum.

  30. This is a precious post. I had the honor of living across the street from my Great Grandmother until I was five years old. I called her Grandma Great…a wonderful Pentecostal woman. I would go to the end of my drive way and call out her name, as soon as she told me it was ok to cross I would run to her.She canned everything….and was always cooking. I always remember her pressure cooker on the stove. I as a child remember canning to be so hard, so I so appreciate this post. I can remember going to Grandma Greats basement thinking I was in a store. Shelves full of jars, aisle after aisle. We are talking about thousands of jars. She canned everyday. I miss her….she went to her Heavenly Home in 1976….I was in 3rd grade. She was born and raised in Alabama, but came to Indiana to raise her family, back when the steel mills had so many jobs. So here I am, still in the area…about 40 miles from Chicago. Thanks for sharing Rhoda….it made me cry, but I was able to bring Grandma Great’s memory alive again. Here’s to you Grandma Great….Aletha Clifton! Xoxo, Genah in Northwest Indiana

  31. Boy, you surely can’t argue with the success they have had over the years canning this way. But I am such a stickler for doing things by the book that I wouldn’t process my canned tomatoes without a water bath.
    I, too, love those photos of their hands. Reminds me of my sweet grandma. She was an excellent seamstress and used to sew a lot of our dresses when we were little. I remember those hands pinning the fabric pieces to me to fit.

  32. Your dad’s hands remind me of my sweet daddy’s hard working hands. At 76 he is still my hero! They just don’t make them like that anymore!

  33. I can my tomatos the same way as your folks, with a slight twist. Instead of peeling the tomatos, I core and cut out any bad parts. Then I throw them in a blender (my family hates tomato chunks) peels and all. Blend them down, pour in a big pot and boil them down til the foam disappears. I have been doing this for years, and now my kids want me to can them for them also.

  34. Thanks to Rhoda and your parents for this tutorial. Great instructions. I might give this a try now that I know I don’t need to buy the canning pots.

  35. This post brought tears to my eyes. This was exactly how my parents canned tomatoes every year. And it was always the two of them working together. My dad didn’t cook much but he loved to do projects like this, even the clean-up. Boy do I miss him!

  36. Oh, Rhoda,
    This is why I have loved your blog from the beginning…. you touch each of us where the tenderest memories live….( and yes, you brought tears to my eyes…) I’m reminded of Dolly Parton’s line in “Steel Magnolias” “Laughter through tears – my favorite E-motion”.
    We have 40 plus years of memories like these of my in-laws canning tomatoes, blanching corn on the cob,putting-up black-eyes peas- all in a sweltering kitchen -then presenting it all to us after a fun week in the country spent with them, to take home and save in our freezers. How we have dreaded since their passing, using up the last cans and zip- lock bags of these precious love-offerings. In fact, we do still keep 2 jars of her famous ” chili-sauce” (her name for the most heavenly tomato relish to ever grace black-eyed peas!) on the pantry shelf just for the confrt of seeing it there.

    Thanks for blessing us all today-
    You are my favorite” Steel Magnolia”

  37. What impresses me about your post is—-FAMILY! Your Dad helping, your sweet mom and you…how wonderful. Wouldn’t it be lovely if young families canned tomatoes together, making it a yearly tradition like your parents did! I am now an old lady, but I remember helping my grandmother and mother can tomatoes long ago. A lot of work, but so special the togetherness we shared!

  38. Becky in SC says:

    Oh those hands……..oh the sites I bet they’ve seen, and the tales they could tell. You need to have one of those pictures framed in black/white!!
    ♥ Becky in SC ♥

  39. I said out loud “the hands of goodness” at the beautiful picture of your parent’s hands and I know how precious those hands of love are to you. Canning tomatoes may be the project but the memories being made is the recipe to remember.

  40. Oh, WOW, does that ever bring back memories! I used to can & freeze all summer long when we lived in Oregon. Haven’t done too much since we moved to Arizona. I may have to do it again since my daughter & dil, both pushing 40, have decided they would like to learn how to do that….lol! We certainly don’t want it to be a dying art!

  41. I’ve also wanted to learn how to can tomatoes. Our family loves them and I can’t seem to keep them in the house. If I buy a flat at the local farm this would be a fun family project for the weekend.

  42. Those sweet hands of your parents bring back so many memories of my late in laws. They helped each other with the canning and the gardening. Loved this blogged. Good memories.

  43. thank you SO much for this post! i just canned some tomatoes from mine & my neighbor’s garden and it worked great! i LOVE heating the jars in the oven instead of having to boil them … 🙂

  44. Thank you so much for sharing this! I have always wondered, and this was such a lovely way to share your memories and a great tutorial!


  45. Hi Rhoda,

    I just discovered your site through The Kings’ Oasis. It’s lovely! And yes, I am interested in canning! Thank you for sharing those beautiful pictures and tips!

    God bless,

    Lady Kara

  46. I scanned through the pictures before reading the post. I too was struck by the beauty of your parents hands. 🙂

  47. Carol Adams says:

    Read your post with tears…good tears. Remembering my grandmas canning so effortlessly. Such a lost art. Love the hand of your parents, too… My parents are 89 and 90 so have similar hands… Precious…
    Thanks for a nice walk down memory lane Rhoda…. Hugs!!

  48. This reminds me of my grandmother. As kids we watched her can tomatoes every summer. How does your mother do the corn? I have several bags in the fridge and need to freeze it. Thanks for sharing!

    • Shan, my mom cuts off the corn from the cobb & bakes it in the oven for about 30 min. then puts it in freezer bags.

  49. A lovely post, Rhoda.
    I hate to be a naysayer, but I feel I must correct some misinformation. I have been canning for over 30 years, and I helped my mom do the family canning for several years before that. Canning tomatoes the way your parents do it is an old time method. But people got sick, and worse, died from food processed that way.
    It is only safe to can tomatoes using the water bath method. Quart jars of tomatoes need 45 minutes in a boiling water bath to kill the yeasts, mold, and bacteria that may be present. Obviously, your parents haven’t had a problem so far, but it’s not worth the risk.
    Talk to your county extension service, or even easier, go to Walmart, find the canning section, and read the Ball Blue Book. Start reading on page 3. It is very important to make sure your home canned food is safe to eat.

    • I completely agree! Canning low acid foods like tomatoes needs scientifically developed recipes. Check with your extension office or the national center for preservation. Don’t follow these instructions. What if you are the person who follows this method and you get someone ill? It’s not worth the risk!

  50. Barbara Mars says:

    My Mother-In-Law taught me to can just this way – only difference is I kept my lids on a low simmer to help them ‘ping’! I would think the cooking of the tomatoes 30 to 45 minutes would kill any bacteria, mold, etc. Anyway, I never had any problem ever! And have canned that way for years! To each their own I say!
    Thanks for the memories!!! And great blog – love it!
    Barbara in TN

  51. This post comes at just the right time as I have a bounty of tomatoes and just not enough time to eat them all.
    I’ve canned peaches
    That is a lot of fun…I am excited to hear that I don’t have to use the water bath, it should make the time go quicker.

    Great post Rhonda!!

  52. Aw Rhoda, what a great lesson in canning tomatoes! You tell your sweet parents, they both have the finest hands I have ever seen.
    What a treat seeing them work in the kitchen together……..they still love to do projects together which is wonderful! 🙂
    Enjoy the tomatoes this winter!

  53. Love this! What great memories you have now captured on film. I love your parents hands and the picture of them working side by side. I also love that you can tomatoes just the exact same way my grandmother taught her daughters and now it continues down through me and someday my own daughters! Thanks for sharing.

  54. What a great post Rhoda, makes me think of Mum (my grandmother), she canned her toms. She always used a pressure cooker, but mostly done the same as your folks, one other thing, she added a basil sprig to each jar (grown in the garden of course 🙂 ), she made the best sauce ever and oh man her meatballs. Funny my hubby and I were just speaking of her and her toms… b’day was last week and we went into the N End for dinner, the sauce was similar her to hers. Italians can cook I tell ya !!!! Mum and Grampy did things as a team too, I was so lucky, as you are, to have learned from the best…….

    I missed the post on your Mum’s hands, but loved this post about your Dad’s……you are so blessedy, and I know you know it to still have them in your life….

    Enjoy your stay Rho…

    All the besst,
    Kathy 🙂

    ps my book came from MKA….I am half way through it, I just LOVE it !!!!!

  55. Thank you so much for this post. Several of my family members live on areas that were cow pasture land & their gardens are flourishing…mine not so much. I had a family member give me 43 tomatoes just this weekend & I spent some time in the kitchen today canning them up for soup & sauces this winter! No one on my side of the family cans & I am just getting into it this summer. My husband’s grandmother has shown me how to pressure can…but she is almost 80 & has a hard time standing for long periods of time. It is blogs like yours that have inspired me to do so & shown me just how easy it is! Tell your momma thank you for showing me.

  56. Rhoda,

    Some varieties of tomatoes these days are not acidic enough to be canned safely this way. In the old days all tomatoes had the necessary acidity to prevent botulism spores from germinating in canned foods. The USDA now recommends adding lemon juice (the amount depends on the size of the jar used) to assure the PH is lower than 4.6. I agree with the other poster who said to go by the standard canning recommendations. I know many people continue to can using older recipes and they are fine, but botulism, while rare is a deadly disease.

    • Correction: Even heirloom varieties of tomatoes have been tested and not found acidic enough to prevent botulism. Adding bottled lemon juice or citric acid will make it more acidic. Also molds growing and other bacteria can bring make it less acidic. Again using the recommended safe recipes from the USDA that include water bath boils or a pressure cooker along with bottled lemon juice or citric acid is really the only safe way to ensure botulism doesn’t develop. You can’t smell or taste or see the botulism toxin and even though it’s a rare occurence, it is deadly.

  57. Great post. I’m a canner too and I just wanted to invite you to a blog party I am co-hoting “Canning Week 2011” August 22-26. All week long we will be posting recipes and tips on canning along with having a linky party for great posts such as the one you have here and canning related giveaways. Hope you can stop by and join in the fun.

  58. I always thought you had to either water bath them in hot boiling water or pressure cook them, Is this really safe? it looks so much easier than what I was used to doing. I wish I could store fresh stuff like this we have small storage and it wouldn’t work very well in this house. This is a wonderful post.

  59. Hi Rhoda,
    I’m catching up on your blog again! Love it. This post so reminds me of growing up in South Carolina. My grandparents put up tomatoes just like this. We did use a water bath for the jars, but I’m making a note to myself to put them in the oven. So much easier. My kids think I’m crazy when I do this. Of course, when we run out and I use canned tomatoes for chilli…they complain something is wrong! They’re spoiled…we worked hard in the garden growing up.

  60. While this is a very nice post the 2 comments from AD and Becky
    are correct. Better to be safe than sorry. You will not find any professional recommendations for canning this way and just because a small sampling of people have not had a problem does not mean it’s ok for everyone.

  61. Making these today with a good crop of beauties from the farmers market! $6 for about 18 pounds worth!

  62. I’m looking at my creoles that we picked a couple of days ago-and I found you. I have never canned before, so please forgive my ignorance -when you put it in the jars where do you store it? In the freezer(can glass go in the freezer ?) Or do you just put it on the shelf until used? Also, are you able to put onions and garlic,etc.. in the sauce when you ae cooking it down?
    Thanks in advance for any help


    • Hi, Ann, thanks for stopping by. My mom stores her canned goods in a cool dry place, mostly under the stairway of their house. No need to refrigerate after canning. They last for a very long time, a couple of years even. She doesn’t add garlic or onions, so I’m not sure if that works well in the canning process or not.

      • thanks for the answer-I’m so new to this -the closest I have ever come is opening the can ! Can’t wait to try this.

  63. Debra Welker says:

    Was just looking for a recipie to use without hot bathing, what do you put the jars in to put them in the oven?

    • Hi, Debra, my mom just sits the jars inside the oven, not inside anything. Then after they are hot, she brings them out to fill up. Use a potholder!

  64. Hi Rhoda! This is such a lovely story about your Mom. I love all the posts you’ve been sharing about your sweet parents.

    I feel compelled to chime in on the canning method, though. By not sterilizing the jars in boiling water and not processing the full jars in boiling water you could potentially be leaving bad bacteria in the jar. If the air at the top of the jar, or the surface of the jar, has a bad bug in it, it will get canned in — the jar may seal, but it could still be unsafe to eat.

    I would strongly encourage anyone who wants to can to please research the issue and be educated about the risks before deciding what to do. I know that many people choose to use methods that aren’t currently considered “officially” safe, and I totally respect everyone’s choice to do that, but for those who might be new to this, I hope that they will do a little research and make sure they know what they’re doing before plowing forward.

    My very best to you, Rhoda, and your sweet parents!


  65. Oh goodness — I just re-read my comment and it seems like I’m saying that you and your Mom don’t know what you’re doing — I really really really didn’t meant to imply that!!! I know that you all are educated about the process and have chosen to can this way.

    I’m just saying that for anyone NEW to canning, who might be considering this method, to please do the research and read up on canning methods so they are fully aware of the choices they’re making before the can. That’s all!



  66. What a easy and fun technique. Brought back some old and fun memories of watching my grandma can stuff. Thanks for sharing! 😀

  67. We always turn our jars upside down to make sure they seal.

  68. My husband and I have only been organic farming and baking for 3 years and this was my first summer freezing tomatoe sauce for the winter. It is soooooo much more delicious than store bought! We sell our goods as well so I want to can next year. I been told storage is very important. Any suggestions?

    • HI, Christa, my mom just stores her can goods under her stairway, it’s a cool dry area. She has never had a problem with her canned tomatoes going bad and she’s been doing this method for many, many years. We love cooking with her canned tomatoes too. The BEST!

  69. the pictures of your Mother’s & Father’s hands are truly precious. I lost both of my parents but they taught me so much. I was very blessed to have them. But I know where they are and that I will see them again one day. This is the promise to those who know Christ. As I can my tomatoes today, I will think of my Mom and Dad. God bless

  70. Jerri Brigmon says:

    I have canned this way for years, it is fast and easy. If you take the tomatoes from the hot water to cool/cold water it makes peeling fast and easy. In half of my tomatoes I ad peppers,onions and garlic for soup/chili mix in the winter. My kids love Mac& tomatoes (made from the mix). BTW I don’t ad salt either. Nice hands !!!

  71. I was watching a program and it said if you were using this method it is a good idea to add one teaspoon of vinegar per quart of tomatoes to add enough acid to help prevent botulism. I have done this for years and you do not taste any difference to the product. I always add my salt to the tomatoes while they are cooking, as well as sugar if you like. When I feel the tomatoes are well cooked I turn the heat up to get a good boil for a few minutes…Just feel safer like this!!

  72. love the post you made it clear and simple how to make this!! How long is the shelf life for the sauce?

    • Melissa, this isn’t sauce, just canned tomatoes. I do make sauce out of this. My mom leaves them on the shelf for a few years and has never had a problem with them going bad. Maybe 2 years or so. She tries to use the old batch and keep the new ones for later.

  73. Kathleen Mc Coy says:

    Thank you for this recipe. I am making it right now. First time an enjoying it. A big thank you to your parents for keeping this tradition alive and well. And to you for posting this rarity. I will make sure all of my children and grandchildren get this recipe. Times are getting hard and we need to get to basics.We have had 7 children and everything was from scratch but I could never get a recipe like this. And it’s been around for ever thanks to your parents. Thanks for sharing. The real Mc Coy 🙂

  74. Thanks so much for sharing. It’s exactly the way I remember my mom canning tomatoes. I’m ready to get started!

  75. Thanks for the tutorial. I have never heard of the tsp of added salt. I always thought after the lids were on, the tomatoes went back into a wayer bath for a few minutes. I like your grandparent’s way better. Can’t wait to try it out.

  76. Thanks for the tutorial. I have never heard of the tsp of added salt. I always thought after the lids were on, the tomatoes went back into a wayer bath for a few minutes. I like your way better. Can’t wait to try it out.


  1. […] times and manufactures instruction for preparing jars and lids.And For Those Of You Who Like VideosA bushel basket full of tomatoes now what do you do. People at work see you coming with a bag in you…by. It must be tomato season.There is nothing like biting into a warm juicy tomato right off the […]

  2. […] to check out some ideas that people had for canning them.  I found a tutorial with pictures on Rhoda’s blog here  that has a great way of explaining it.  Not to mention it seemed pretty easy, and I had all of […]

  3. […] water bath canning, I think I prefer the technique I used for salsa canning. It’s described here and I think it is a little easier and less dangerous because I don’t have to use the huge pot […]

  4. […] Canning Tomatoes – Southern Hospitality – Rhoda, thanks for posting this! Canning tomatoes is on my to do list for this summer, hopefully all from our garden. I didn’t realize you could do it without extra …… […]

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