Tomatoes are the fruits of the tomato plant and are generally juicy, sweet, and acidic. Tomatoes are most commonly red but other varieties can ripen into a combination of green, yellow, orange, purple, and even brown colors. The typical tomato is about the size of a closed fist but varieties can range from the size of a currant berry to about the size of two closed fists.



  • It is currently very popular to make tomato sandwiches using sliced fresh tomatoes and mayonnaise with a little seasoning.
  • Jessica Sowards of Roots and Refuge likes to cook sliced tomatoes in brown butter.
  • Tomato sauce for pizza or pasta is one of the most common uses for tomatoes.


  • Raw tomatoes are generally processed into other forms for cooking.
  • Dicing or chopping tomatoes is a great way to make raw tomatoes smaller for use in soup, salsa, pasta sauce, chili, and breakfast meals. Making the tomatoes smaller speeds up any cooking time.
  • Crushed tomatoes are a combination of finely diced tomatoes and tomato puree. They can be used in place of diced or chopped tomatoes in any cooked recipe where there is not a need for a firm tomato texture.
  • Roasting tomatoes in the oven caramelizes the sugars in the tomato making them sweeter and less acidic while bringing out the tomato’s inherent umami flavor. It also removes a lot of the liquid and concentrates the tomato flavor, making this form of tomato perfect for applications where you want a lot of tomato flavor without all of the liquid.
  • Tomatoes can be cooked and strained to create tomato juice. The tomato pulp that is strained out can be used like crushed tomatoes.
  • Tomato paste is a highly concentrated tomato product that is made by roasting tomatoes and then separating the seeds and the skin from the pulp using a food mill or sieve and then reducing the tomato pulp into a thick paste.

Food Preservation

  • Freezing
  • Canning
  • Lacto-fermenting

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