Homemade “Canned” Diced Tomatoes

"Canned" Tomatoes

Some people might think I’m crazy, but I find it so satisfying to make foods from scratch myself.

When I first when vegetarian, we had a whole shelf of the pantry dedicated to cans. Chickpeas, kidney beans, refried beans, baked beans, and canned diced tomatoes. Things have changed quite a bit since then, and now its stocked with dried beans instead.

I feel empowered now that I know how to cook my own beans and diced tomatoes, and I don’t have to rely on processed foods.

Save money, less packaging ends up in land fill, and get more nutrients from fresh, whole foods. Win win win.

Here’s some tomato maths for you:

5 fresh average-sized tomatoes = 1.5-2 cups of diced tomatoes

1.5 cups of diced tomatoes = 1 x 400g / 14oz can of diced tomatoes

So for every 400g / 14oz can of diced tomatoes your replacing you need 5 tomatoes.

You can make this in large quantities and freeze in batches of 1.5 cups (1 x 400g / 14oz can) or 3 cups (1 x 800g / 28oz can).

Look at all those numbers! It must be true.


I don’t like to blanch the tomatoes, because most of fruit and vegetables nutrients are in the skin or just under it. Plus I’m kind of lazy and it seems like a waste of time to me.

But here are the instructions to blanch tomatoes, if this takes your fancy:

  1. In a big pot of boiling water, add whole tomatoes and boil for 1 minute.
  2. Drain water in a colander.
  3. Drop tomatoes in a bowl full of water + ice.
  4. Once the tomatoes are cool enough to touch them, peel the skin. It should come off easily.

Homemade "Canned" Diced Tomatoes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Make your own "canned" diced tomatoes from home.
Yield: 3 cups (2 cans worth)
  • 10 tomatoes
  1. Preheat oven to 190°C / 375°F.
  2. Chop tomatoes into 8 - 16 pieces, depending on how big you want them.
  3. Throw into a baking tray. A glass baking tray works best here because of all the juices.
  4. Bake for 1 hour.
  5. To freeze ahead, freeze in batches of 1.5 cups (1 x 14oz can).

Alternatively, you can simmer the tomatoes in a pot for 5-10 minutes. I haven’t tried this method and really like how they turn out with the baking method.

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21 comments on “Homemade “Canned” Diced Tomatoes

  1. I am sorry but do you really bake at 400 degrees for an hour. That seems like you would burn the tomatoes. I know simmering the tomatoes for 5 to 10 minutes would take very little juices out of the fruit.
    I would like to try this recipe but I don’t want to lose the tomatoes to a misprint.

    • Hi Mike, you are right, 400 might be a bit high, especially if your oven runs hot. My old oven ran a bit cooler so perhaps thats why I did well at a higher temp. I have adjusted the recipe to 375F, let me know how you go with it 🙂

      • Shae,

        Just to update you on the recipe for the tomatoes. I have tried this several times and have tweaked the temperature and have found that 390 degrees is the best for my oven and the results have been FANTASTIC!!!

        Our tomatoes have really started to produce to the point we are doing batches almost every day. I believe we have over 15 quarts frozen right now. We have used some the abundance in chili, lasagna, and soups. My wife has eaten them right out of the baking dish and says they are great.

        Thanks for sharing this recipe. It has made our life easier and so much more tastier…. and it continues to influence our decision on what to plant in the garden next year, definitely more tomatoes.

        Thanks again and keep on sharing.


        • I thought this sounded silly, but I had my last batch of tomatoes, wanted to make a recipe, and a houseful of kids. WOW! The house smells great, it was super simple, and I tasted one, AMAZING!!! I wish I knew this all season when we were abundant. I also won’t hesitate to buy the tomatoes during the offseason so I can keep making them and not buying cans. I really am trying to move to all clean eating.

          • Hi Dawn, awesome so glad you liked it! You could also buy a lot of tomatoes when they are in season and freeze in batches to use year round!

  2. Pingback: Homemade “Canned” Diced Tomatoes | Nourish & Live

    • You don’t need to steralise the jars because this isn’t a traditional canning recipe, and they can’t sit on the the shelf. The freezing does the preserving! I’m not exactly sure but I would guess 6-12 months? You might need to experiment 🙂

  3. Pingback: Bruschetta Chicken on Sun Dried Tomato Pasta Romaine Salad | Mrs. Kelleher

    • Nope I leave the peels on, but if you want them peeled do that before baking them. Cut a cross in the bottom of the tomatoes, blanch for 1 minute in boiling water then peel.

  4. Ziplock bags work great. I store my homemade sauce in zip lock bags in the freezer with no problem. Just be sure to thaw with the bag sitting in a bowl just in case there are any nicks in the bag from being bumped in the freezer.

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