My jam these days is definitely tomatoes! I’ve been gathering tomatoes from my garden and eating them right off the vine, on BLT’s, on my favorite wedge salad, and on my pizza. Have you ever had tomato jam? I was reminded of it when my mom and I went out to lunch today at a sweet little bistro called Board and Batten, where we split the most amazing turkey sandwich stacked high with arugula, avocado aioli, bacon, swiss, and TOMATO JAM. Oh how it hit the spot for us, and as soon as I got home I picked every ripe little cherry and sun gold tomato I could find and headed into the kitchen to get to work.
Tomato jam is very easy to make, and it’s another way to bottle up the flavor of homegrown tomatoes and make this season last just a little bit longer. You could use a meatier tomato, like a Roma or Paste, but I just used what was needing to be picked from my garden. After washing and removing stems, just add tomatoes to a small saucepan along with brown sugar, vinegar, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves.
You could also add some cayenne or jalapeño peppers for heat, but this time I left them out. Just let those tomatoes simmer away, stirring occasionally until they burst open and soften. All the juices come together and reduce with the sugar, and the natural pectin acts as a thickener, turning the tomatoes into a beautiful jam!
It will take about 35-45 minutes, simmering on medium-low heat. You can strain out the skins with a fine mesh strainer (at about the 15 minute mark) and then return the remaining liquid back to the pan if you’d like, but I prefer to leave them in for texture and simplicity.
You’ll know the tomato jam is ready when it has reduced by half, and coats a wooden spoon without dripping off.
Now you have a precious little jar of this super flavorful tomato jam, so how will you use it? Of course, the turkey sandwich mentioned above is a definite winner, but you can also use it as super fancy ketchup on your burger. Don’t forget the bacon! To share this bottled-up goodness with a crowd, try spreading it over a block of softened cream cheese as a cracker dip. So good!
I’m so thankful to have such a bountiful garden this year, with plenty of tomatoes for sharing and trying new recipes. I’m definitely going to make this tomato jam every year. I mean, have you ever seen a happier burger? Let me know if you’ve made tomato jam and how you love to eat it.
Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #lovelylittlekitchen
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- 1 pound tomatoes*
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon good quality balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- Bring all the ingredients together to a simmer in a small saucepan on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.
- After about 35-45 minutes, the liquid will thicken and reduce by about half. When it is thick and jammy and coats a wooden spoon, it is ready. Cool, and then store in a covered jar in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
*If using larger tomatoes rather than cherry size, core and chop them first.
- Serving Size: 1 Tablespoon
- Calories: 20
- Sugar: 4.5g
- Sodium: 42mg
- Fat: 0.1g
- Saturated Fat: 0g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 5g
- Fiber: 0.4g
- Protein: 0.3g
- Cholesterol: 0mg