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Canning Whole Tomatoes in Water

Updated: Oct 19, 2023



Canning whole tomatoes in water is a great way to preserve them. This canning recipe and canning tutorial is very good for beginners and makes great use of the prolific garden yields that are so common with tomatoes. Once you have a pantry full of canned tomatoes you will have them the rest of the year to make many different recipes. Whole tomatoes canned in water are a great staple ingredient to have in your pantry. Today we have a step-by-step tutorial to teach you how to can whole tomatoes in water.

Canned Tomatoes

How to Can and Preserve Whole Tomatoes

The following directions will make a 1-quart jar of canned Tomatoes. This makes it easy to multiply the recipe for the number of jars you want to add to your pantry.

blanch tomatoes

The first step is to blanch and peel 5-7 small tomatoes.

place tomatoes in the jar

Next, place your tomatoes into your hot jar.

add salt, lemon juice, and hot water

Top the Tomatoes with 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice per jar.

Fill the rest of the jar with boiling hot water. Leave a 1/2 inch headspace.

remove air bubbles

Use a wood chopstick or something similar to remove any trapped air bubbles.


Place the lid on top of the jar and add the ring. Tighten the ring to fingertip tight and process in a boiling water bath for 45 minutes if at sea level. (Remember to adjust your processing time if higher than 1000 feet elevation.)

processing complete

Once your tomatoes have completed the appropriate time in the boiling water bath canner take them out and set them on the counter, spacing them about an inch apart, for 24 hours to cool and completely seal.


If your jar of tomatoes did not seal then place it in the fridge and use it immediately. Store the sealed jars in your lovely pantry to enjoy for the next 1-3 years. After three years the nutritional value of canned food diminishes. The quality is best in the first year.


If you have any questions about canning with the boiling water canner or how to adjust the pressure or processing time for altitude, take a look at our canning basics videos.


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