Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Canning Tomatoes

Why would I can my own tomatoes?  Well, almost all food cans have Bisphenol A (BPA) in the lining.  That means that BPA, an endocrine disruptor which can mimic estrogen, may leach into the food in those cans and then into the people eating that food. Canada became the first country to declare BPA a toxic substance but still allows it to be used in cans.  I cannot imagine why.


So, in order to avoid BPA I am no longer buying or using canned food, unless of course they are BPA free. Luckily for me there are some BPA free canned products available in my area including coconut milk.   However, knowing that I would be in need of tomatoes for pasta, chili and other dishes over the winter I decided to can my own this summer.

I strongly suggest that if anyone wants to attempt canning they avail themselves of all the information available on the subject.  It is very important that you have the right equipment and follow the specific instructions for each type of food you wish to can.  If you don't do it right you can get very sick. 

I started with 11kg of ripe tomatoes and ended up with 8, one litre jars of whole tomatoes.   It was a lot of work and took about 5 hours.  The tomatoes need to be washed, cut with an X, blanched, skinned and cooked before they can be canned and then boiled in the canner.  

I really do not relish (no pun intended)  the idea of doing this again next year.  I found it to be a lot of work for a small number of jars.  But no BPA!

Recently I also heard about a very east way to perserve tomatoes.  My friend Arin gave me this excellent tip.  She has a friend who simply takes the ripe tomatoes and freezes them on a wax paper lined baking sheet.  Once they are frozen she pops them in a bag and keeps them in the freezer until needed.  I love this idea and I’ll try it next summer and let you know how it goes.  Thanks for the tip Arin!

What about you?  Have you ever tried the freezing method?  What were the results? I would love to hear from you!  Leave a comment below.




  1. I roast my tomatoes and then freeze them in bags. My freezer is getting way too full though, so next eyr I will really need to can my tomatoes.
    BTW. I use lids that look just like yours and they are lined with BPA. :-( I may get some Tattler lids for next year as well. . .

    1. Laura, thank you so much for the information on the lids. I had no idea! I just did a quick check on the ones that you mentioned and it looks like they are reusable too.

  2. After roasting your tomatoes, do you peel off the skins or no?