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The healthiest ketchup is homemade: Learn how to make your own with organic tomatoes, adding a powerful antioxidant force to everyday meals

Homemade ketchup

(NaturalNews) Could ketchup be the hero of American condiments? In the U.S., 97 percent of all households report having a bottle in their fridge. While the origin of ketchup is anything but American, we seem to love this overly processed sauce.

Today, the main ingredient in ketchup is generally known to be tomatoes, which are rich in the antioxidant lycopene. However, when British merchants brought it back with them from China and Southeast Asia, it contained no tomatoes. Through the years since being brought to the West, ketchup recipes have include mushrooms, nuts, oysters and tomatoes.

Ketchup sold on today's market is far from the original fermented recipe packed with healthy, whole foods.

Heinz, for instance, is loaded with high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and other harmful preservatives and additives to improve shelf life and taste. While they are sourcing out HFCS in Canada, don't let marketing tricks make you believe you are buying a whole and healthy product. The sugar in there comes from sugar beets, a highly genetically modified (GM) glyphosate-tolerant crop, linked to cancers and bee-killing.

While other brands such as President's Choice or French's may seem the better choice as they market themselves as using locally grown tomatoes and no HFCS or GM ingredients, the tomatoes they use are still cultivated in a conventional way and sprayed with synthetic pesticides, fungicides, and fertilizers.

Are you feeding your family toxic chemicals? To be sure of what goes into your body, read Mike Adams' new book, Food Forensics: The Hidden Toxins Lurking in Your Food and How You Can Avoid Them for Lifelong Health.

Homemade classic ketchup recipe

The best way to protect your family while still enjoying your favorite condiment is by making your own healthy version with organic tomatoes and other whole foods. This recipe makes about an eight fluid ounce jar.

What you'll need:

  • 12 pound organic tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 yellow onions, coarsely chopped
  • 3 small red bell peppers, seeded and coarsely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, lightly crushed
  • 1 cinnamon stick, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon celery seeds
  • 1.5 teaspoon whole allspice
  • 1.5 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 0.5 teaspoon peppercorns
  • 0.5 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1.5 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons raw sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoon salt
  • Sterilized 8 ounce jar with lid


Blanch, peel and core the tomatoes. Then cut them into quarters.

In a large saucepan or cooking pot, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Stir in the onions and peppers and cook for five minutes or until tender. Then add tomatoes and cook until soft. This will take about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the garlic and the spices in a small piece of cheesecloth. Bring the corners together and tie with a kitchen string. In a small saucepan, bring the vinegar and cheesecloth bag to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover and remove from the heat.

When the tomatoes are soft, pass the mixture through a food mill or sieve. Take the herb bag out of the vinegar and pour all but 1/4 cup of the vinegar into the tomato mixture.

Add sugar and salt and bring to a boil over high heat. When boiling, reduce heat to medium and simmer until the mixture is reduced by more than half. This will take about 45 to 60 minutes. Stir regularly.

Adjust the seasoning, if needed, with salt, sugar and the remaining vinegar.

Spoon the hot ketchup into the jar, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust the headspace, if necessary. Wipe the rims clean and seal tightly with the lid.

Store sealed jars in a dark, cool place for up to one year. If the seal has failed, store in the refrigerator for up to a month.

FYI: Make your ketchup probiotic

If you want to add an extra probiotic benefit, add whey or brine from existing vegetable ferments to the cooled ketchup and let sit for two to three days at room temperature. If you are using a regular lid instead of a lid with an airlock, make sure to open the lid every day to let it "burp." When the ketchup is to your taste, put it in the refrigerator to stop the fermentation process.

Not only does fermentation add beneficial bacteria to your gut, but it also improves the shelf life of the ketchup. So why not give it a try?

Sources for this article include:






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