Looking for How to Make and Freez Tomato Juice - Easily! With Step-by-step Photos, Recipe, Directions, Ingredients and Costs in 2021? Scroll down this page and follow the links. And if you bring home some fruit or vegetables and want to can, freeze, make jam, salsa or pickles, see this page for simple, reliable, illustrated canning, freezing or preserving directions. There are plenty of other related resources, click on the resources dropdown above. If you are having a hard time finding canning lids, I've used these, and they're a great price & ship in 2 days.
It's fun to go pick your own and you can obviously get better quality tomatoes!
Wash, remove stems, and trim off bruised or discolored portions of the tomatoes.
Quantity: An average of 23 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts, or an average of 14 pounds per canner load of 9 pints. A bushel weighs about 53 pounds and yields 15 to 18 quarts of juice - an average of 31/4 pounds per quart.
At right is a picture of tomatoes from my garden - they are so much better than anything from the grocery store. And if you don't have enough, a pick-your-own farm is the pace to go! At right are 4 common varieties that will work:
|Top left: Beefsteak||Top right: Lemon Boy, yellow|
|Bottom left: Roma, paste-type||Bottom right: Better Boy|
Also, you don't want mushy, bruised or rotten tomatoes!
Caution: Do not use tomatoes from dead or frost-killed vines. Green tomatoes are more acidic than ripened fruit and can be canned safely, also.
To prevent the juice from separating, quickly cut about 1 pound of tomatoes at a time into quarters and put directly into a saucepan on the stove. (If you are not concerned about juice separation, simply slice or quarter all of the tomatoes at once into a large saucepan.)
Juicers? Can you use a juicer? Certainly! It will eliminate step 6 and 7 later on, but, of course, you will need to simmer for 5 minutes (step 5). The one potential downside to using a juicer is that the juice may later separate (clarify) into a top and bottom portion, for the reasons already explained above.
Heat immediately to boiling while crushing (I use a potato masher). Continue to slowly add and crush freshly cut tomato quarters to the boiling mixture; repeating steps 4 and 5. Make sure the mixture boils constantly and vigorously while you add the remaining tomatoes.
Simmer 5 minutes after you add all pieces. Crush, heat, and simmer for 5 minutes before juicing.
Press the heated tomato juice through a sieve or food mill to remove skins and seeds. I use the Foley food mill, shown at right
There is also a VERY nice, versatile strainer pictured at below! Click on the links there or see the bottom of this page for more information and to order! The VillaWare model can handle higher volumes than a Foley food mill (without giving you cramps!) And yes, you can use your juicer, if it can handle boiling hot liquids!
To see a greater variety of strainers in other types, sizes, and prices, click here!
You may add bottled lemon juice or citric acid to jars, as described in the next paragraph, to acidify the contents. This helps avoid spoilage and increase safety. this is really a precaution
Acidification: To ensure safe acidity in whole, crushed, or juiced tomatoes, add two tablespoons of bottled lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid (such as "Fruit Fresh") per quart of tomatoes. For pints, use one tablespoon bottled lemon juice or 1/4 teaspoon citric acid. Acid can be added directly to the containers before filling with product. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar to offset acid taste, if desired. Four tablespoons of a 5 percent acidity vinegar per quart may be used instead of lemon juice or citric acid. However, vinegar may cause undesirable flavor changes, compared with lemon juice or citric acid.
Seasoning: Add 1 teaspoon of salt per quart, if desired. I also add 1 teaspoon of ground basil.
You may want to let the juice cool down a bit for an hour before you fill containers and put it into the freezer.
Home Canning Kits
This is the same type of standard canner that my grandmother used to
make everything from applesauce to jams and jellies to tomato and
spaghetti sauce. This complete kit includes everything you need and
lasts for years: the canner, jar rack, jar grabber tongs, lid lifting
wand, a plastic funnel, labels, bubble freer, and the bible of canning,
the Ball Blue Book. It's much cheaper than buying the items separately.
You'll never need anything else except jars & lids (and the jars are
reusable)! There is also a simple kit with just the canner and rack, and a pressure canner, if you want to do vegetables (other than tomatoes).
To see more canners, of
different styles, makes and prices, click here!
Preserving for Dummies
The All New Ball Book Of Canning And Preserving: Over 350 of the Best Canned, Jammed, Pickled, and Preserved Recipes Paperback
This is THE book on canning! My grandmother used this book when I was a child. It tells you in simple instructions how to can almost anything; complete with recipes for jam, jellies, pickles, sauces, canning vegetables, meats, etc. If it can be canned, this book likely tells you how! Click on the link below for more information and / or to buy (no obligation to buy)
As my jars are cooling after i take them out of the canner, they sometimes
make a popping or hissing noise. Is this normal and safe?
Yes, the lids are designed to flex and that's actually a key selling point. You can tell if a jar hasn't sealed properly (after it has cooled completely) if the lid flexes and makes a popping sound when you press the center of the lid with your finger. The popping sounds while it is cooling is the lid being sucked down by the vacuum that is forming inside the jar - which a normal part of the sealing process. Hissing sounds are usually just escaping steam or hot water evaporating on hot surfaces, also normal!
Above is the
2020 version of
the Ball Blue Book