Homemade tomato ketchup

Ketchup is my weakness. I don’t put it on everything, but there are some meals I simply can’t have without it (namely chips, pizza crusts and fish finger sandwiches!) But supermarket ketchup is so high in sugar that really it’s a no go for me. Obviously I still have it occasionally, but I wanted to create a refined sugar-free alternative so that I could eat it whenever I wanted, with whatever I wanted.

Making homemade ketchup is a relatively slow process as it involves boiling off excess liquid and allowing the sauce to thicken, but it’s well worth the wait. The end product is a deliciously thick, sweet and smokey sauce that tastes amazing.


  • 2 tbsps olive oil
  • 1kg tomatoes, roughly chopped (I used 600g of fresh tomatoes and one tin of chopped tomatoes)
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil, chopped (I tend to use pre-chopped frozen herbs)
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cloves
  • 125ml red wine vinegar
  • 60g coconut sugar
  • 250ml cold water
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

This recipe makes roughly 2 jars of ketchup and will keep in the fridge or a cool dark place for up to 6 months. 

This ketchup goes perfectly with my beetroot and quinoa burgers and parsnip chips


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan on a medium heat. Chuck the onion and garlic into the pan, alongside all the herbs and spices and cook for a few minutes until the onion starts to soften.
  2. Add the tomatoes and cold water and bring this up to the boil. Once bubbling, reduce the heat and continue to cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the liquid reduces by half.
  3. Using either a food processor or a handheld electric blender, whiz up the sauce for a few minutes and then sieve once or twice until the sauce is smooth.
  4. Place the sauce into a clean pan and add the vinegar and sugar. Heat gently on a low simmer until the sauce thickens to the desired ketchup consistency. Taste here and correct the seasoning with a little salt and pepper if needed.*
  5. Once cooled, place into jars or bottles and keep in a cool dark place, or the fridge. Serve with my beetroot and quinoa burgers or some parsnip chips.


*If the taste of vinegar is too overpowering, you can balance it out with bicarbonate of soda. Simply add a pinch at a time to the sauce, ensuring it is fully combined before adding any more. Be patient and taste every time you add the bicarbonate of soda, as adding too much will ruin the sauce. You can also add a little more sugar if desired.


Samantha x

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