Tomatoes (approx. 1 lb per pint)
Bottled lemon juice or citric acid (if you plan to can your diced tomatoes)
Peel, core and seed your tomatoes. Then, dice them into small pieces. Try to retain as much of the tomato juice as possible (placing your cutting board inside of a rimmed baking sheet is an easy way to do this).
Transfer your diced tomatoes, and all the captured juices, to a large pot; and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for 30 minutes, stirring regularly, until the juices thicken.
To Can Your Diced Tomatoes
Add two tablespoons of bottled lemon juice (or 1/2 tsp citric acid) to each of your hot, sterilized quart jars. Add one tablespoon lemon juice (or 1/4 tsp citric acid) to each pint jar. This is necessary to bring the acidity to a safe range for both boiling water canning and pressure canning.
If you want to salt your diced tomatoes, this is the time to do it. Add up to half a teaspoon of salt to each pint, and up to one teaspoon to each quart.
Then, ladle your diced tomatoes (and their juices) into the jars, while they’re hot. Be sure to leave 1/2-inch of headspace at the top of each jar for expansion. Use a butter knife or bubble tool to remove any air bubbles. Screw on the lids and rings, until they’re fingertip tight.
To water boiling can: Process pint jars for 35 minutes; quarts for 45 minutes. To pressure can: Process jars (pints or quarts) for 20 minutes.
To Freeze Your Diced Tomatoes
Ladle your diced tomatoes (and their juices) into freezer-safer containers (leaving 1/2-inch of headspace); allow them to cool; then freeze.
- A boiling water canner can only hold seven quarts or nine pints at a time. Since it takes approximately one pound of fresh tomatoes to make each pint of diced tomatoes, that means you should only process 9 lbs of tomatoes at a time, if you’re making pints; and 14 lbs, if you’re making quarts.
- One pint of homemade diced tomatoes is the equivalent of one 15-0z. can of store-bought diced tomatoes.
- This recipe is based on current National Center for Home Food Preservation guidelines. Do not alter the recipe, if you’ll be canning it.