Friday, March 25, 2011

You can make that? Ketchup!

You can make ketchup? Yeah! And it's SO easy! Maybe you're venturing into eating a healthier, preservative-/additive-/mystery ingredient-free diet. You're cooking dinner at home most of the time: great! But when you venture into the condiment isle at the grocery store- what do you do? You could shop at a fancy, organic grocery store and spend loads of money. (Well, some of you could.) We sure can't!  My solution: make it myself :) I've been making our salad dressing, sour cream, mayo, pickle relish, and now ketchup. Yay. But wont it go bad in like a week, you ask? I can't be making all our condiments every week! The magical, ancient solution: fermentation. When you ferment your yummy home concoctions, they'll last a month or more!

This was my first batch of real ketchup, and I was SO excited to make it!


 I got the recipe from The Nourished Kitchen - a very fun blog I highly encourage you to visit. Here is her recipe:




  • 2 cups tomato paste, preferably homemade


  • 1/4 cup raw honey, maple syrup or whole unrefined cane sugar (see sources)


  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh whey*, divided


  • 2 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar, plus extra for thinning the ketchup, if desired


  • 1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt


  • 1 teaspoon allspice


  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves





  • Seeing that homemade tomato paste is out of the question in March, I used S&W Organic. Yay for costco.


    I used a combination of pure maple syrup and raw honey, 'cause I'm complicated like that.

    added the vinegar, salt, spices and my 1/4 cup of whey that I had drained from kefir. Stir it all up! (If you don't know what whey is or want to know how to "make" it, leave a comment and I'll be sure to explain!)

    Scoop it into a mason jar.

    Top it off with the extra 2 Tbsp whey for good measure.

    Put a towel on it, and set it in a warm place for three to five days & leave it alone so it can ferment. (Next to your lacto-fermenting beets of you have them. Then they can have a nice chat while they culture.)


    And.... tadaa! you have ketchup! Nutritionally speaking, a vegetable with natural sweeteners, just teeming with healthy, beneficial bacteria (think yogurt!) The recipe said I could just stir in the white stuff that formed on the top from the extra whey, but it eeked me out a bit so I scooped it off. :)

    yum! Homemade turkey nuggets, here we come.  This ketchup will last SEVERAL MONTHS in your fridge. Hooray!


    Almost forgot!
    cost analysis:
    tomato paste: can't find the reciept. I think it was 6.99, but maybe it was 7.99 for the box of 12. I'm going to guess high. $8 / 12 = $0.67. I used three cans = $2.00
    maple syrup: $12.55/32oz - 1/8C=$0.39
    honey: $30.40/1gal - 1/8C=$0.24
    whey: free, drained off kefir or plain yogurt
    cider vinegar: $2.75/32oz 2T=$0.09
    sea salt & spices: oh..... i don't know. Let's say $0.02

    Total: $2.74 at the most! (you could make it much cheaper with cheaper ingredients! I could be wrong, but I don't think you could buy an organic ketchup with probiotics for $2.74 or less at the grocery store!)

    6 comments:

    The Boggs Family said...

    I'm interested! What is whey?!!!! I get my organic ketchup at Freddies for like $1.99 or something. But it does go fast at my house. This seems easy to make! I love that you make so many things!

    Matt and Brianne said...

    You'll get a better definition if you google it, but basically whey is a watery liquid full of beneficial bacteria that you get from dairy products. If you have plain yogurt, you can put it in a (thin) towel-lined strainer set over a bowl, and in a few hours the whey will drip into the bowl and your yogurt will get thicker, like a greek style yogurt! (if you do it long enough, say, 12-ish hours, the yogurt will thicken into REALLY yummy cream cheese! Just tie the towel/cheesecloth up w/ the thick yogurt ball in the middle and hang it to get all the whey to drip out. I'm sure I'll be doing a more detailed post on that later!) Don't worry about refrigeration, the happy bacteria cultures are working away to keep the yogurt and the whey from spoiling. (for reference, 1 quart of yogurt makes about a cup of cream cheese and 2 cups of whey!)
    Back before pasteurization, if you left your milk out, it would naturally separate into curds and whey.
    Hope that helps!

    Tara said...

    Thanks for sharing this recipe and the whey explanation. I'm wanting to delve into fermentation but I'm scared. Is there ANY way things can go wrong and you can get sick? That's what I'm afraid of...

    Brianne said...

    In Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon explains that if your vegetables do not ferment properly, they will be so rancid that nothing on earth could convince you to put it in your mouth! It's not like they'd be "only a little bad" after sitting on your counter, rotting for a few days. If it doesn't work, you'll know! (that's what she says, anyway!)

    Tara said...

    lol, well that makes sense. I just have to be brave enough to try it. :) I am making this ketchup tomorrow! Yay! It's way less scary than kombuca at this point. ha!

    I want to try mayo too. Do you use the Nourishing Traditions recipe? Have you made mustard yet?

    Thanks for all of your fabulousness! You're awesome!

    Brianne said...

    I've used a couple mayo recipes, my favorite so far is the one on foodrenegade.com - yum! I think my next batch will be more olive oil, less coconut oil. So happy about how long it lasts. :)
    We're not huge mustard eaters, so I haven't tried that yet.
    And for my next batch of ketchup, I may do a tad more honey and more vinegar too so it's not quite as thick! Good, though!