Homemade Ketchup-My Way

by Pamela

homemade ketchup, ketchup recipe, tomato spread, make ketchup

It’s a love affair that’s almost as old as Romeo and Juliet – ketchup and hamburgers.  Oh, ketchup is a fickle soulmate…what with all that kanoodling with french fries and hot dogs.  But In my mind it’s ketchup and burgers forever.

Craig has a “thing” for ketchup and french fries that borders obscene.  I’ve heard his college stories that include a large tray piled high with french fries and an entire bottle of ketchup.  If I continued any further with this story, you wouldn’t be able to read my blog anymore at work.  It’s so obscene it wouldn’t get through the filters.

I, on the other hand, grew up with homemade ketchup.  I’m not trying to be all self-righteous about this fact…trust me.  My mom and, by default, I did the make ketchup sweat and swelter dance in the heat of the Cleveland summer every year.  I wouldn’t eat it, I hated it.  All of my mom’s friends thought that her ketchup was “amazing,” “so delicious,” but I couldn’t stand the texture or the flavor.  All I wanted was to be a normal kid with a bottle of Heinz ketchup in the refrigerator.  It was a glorious day when we would go out to eat and I could squish those packets of flaming red yumminess on my burgers or fries.  Oh happy day!

Since I’ve had my own household for quite some time, you would have thought that I’d always have a squeeze bottle of the red stuff readily available.  But I hardly ever have it around.  I guess ketchup was something that was more important to my taste buds when I was a kid as opposed to now.  Now I find myself only using it as an ingredient in some other recipe, like bbq sauce for example.

But recently Craig was going on a meat bender and really wanted some big juicy hamburgers.  I scoured my fridge, but was unable to locate any of Craig’s condiment of choice so homemade ketchup it is – I decided.

Homemade Ketchup

I suppose this is more of a tomato spread recipe than an actual ketchup recipe.  If you’re expecting this to taste like your beloved Heinz, you’ll be disappointed…it’s not even close to the same thing.  This homemade ketchup recipe (okay, tomato spread) also does not contain any sugar (it gets its sweetness from the roasting of the vegetables) or some of the familiar ketchup spices like nutmeg or cloves.

I left this tomato spread a little more on the thick and chunky side.  You could certainly add a bit more olive oil and continue to process it until it’s smoother and thinner.

Craig fell in love with my homemade ketchup and proclaimed that he didn’t need the bottled stuff anymore.  He also mentioned that since he saw how easy it was to make, that I couldn’t make any excuses for not making it more often for him.  When I reminded him that he had watched and admired its simplicity, that he could now make it he stammered and high tailed it out of the kitchen.

Relationship Advice

All men think about is sex!  How many times have you heard, or said, that statement?  Well, it seems that statement is not quite true.  Let me re-phrase that….men don’t think about sex any more than they think about food or sleep.  Seriously.  A new study takes a look at men’s thoughts on sex.

With that, I thought I would also help you out with a little man translation.  Since we were wrong about them only thinking about sex…maybe we were wrong about the meanings of some of the things that they say.

Guy:  Are you going to eat all of that?

Girl Interpretation: I’m fat and he thinks I’m fat and now I can’t eat this….ever.again.

What He Means: You keep taking me to these goofy restaurants that think a portion size is a 1″ x 1″ block with some finger paint splotches of color and foam.  All I want is a big juicy steak.

Guy:  I’m hungry, what’s for dinner?

Girl Interpretation:  Let’s have sex.  I’m really horny.

What He Means:  I’m really hungry, what’s for dinner?

Guy: Wanna go to bed?  I’m beat.

Girl Interpretation:  Wanna go to bed and let me grope you all over then have mad passionate sex?

What He Means:  Today really sucked, my boss is a jerk and I’m exhausted and all I want to do is sleep.

Guy:  What’s spicy around here?

Girl Interpretation:  It’s sexy time.  He’s finally learned to be cute with when he says what he’s looking for.

What He Means:  Is there any Sriracha or Tabasco sauce around here?  This stuff is kinda bland.

Guy:  Is there any beer in here?

Girl Interpretation:  He’s looking for an alcoholic beverage.

What He Means:  Why are there 3 kinds of wine, 6 kinds of fruit flavored vodkas and a bottle of coconut flavored rum around here and not one thing for a self-respecting man to drink?

Guys really are that simple, don’t over think it ladies.


Recipe: Homemade Ketchup

Summary: Homemade Ketchup is so much better than the stuff in the stores!


  • 3 Handfuls of Grape Tomatoes
  • 1 Medium Sweet Onion (peeled and diced)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • 2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 Teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • Kosher Salt
  • Fresh Ground Black Pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Farenheit.
  2. Add tomatoes, diced onion and garlic to sheet pan. Drizzle generously with olive oil to coat everything thoroughly.
  3. Sprinkle Italian seasoning over vegetables.
  4. Using your hands, make sure everything is coated with the olive oil and seasoning then spread everything out evenly on the sheet pan.
  5. Roast in oven for 30 minutes or until tomatoes burst and edges of tomatoes and oven begin to brown.
  6. Remove from oven and pour everything into a food processor or blender. Add in vinegar and worcestershire sauce. Purée everything to consistency desired.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Makes 1/2 – 3/4 cup ketchup depending on consistency desired.

Quick notes

To thin out consistency, add olive oil (1 tablespoon at a time)  while pureeing. To make spicy, add in 1/4 teaspoon chipotle pepper powder or 1/4 of a fresh jalapeno pepper.

Preparation time:  10 Minutes

Cooking time:  30 Minutes

Diet (other): Reduced fat, Gluten free

Number of servings (yield): 1

Culinary tradition: USA (General)


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Alison@cookingwithfriends May 18, 2011 at 9:30 am

Adorable blog and fantastic looking recipe. I love homemade ketchup and must recruit a friend to make this with me. Thanks for sharing! Wonderful photos too.

Pamela May 18, 2011 at 10:36 am

Thanks for the kind words Alison!

Dee D. May 18, 2011 at 5:08 am

Ooh, this is definitely something to try out!
I’ve never had homemade ketchup!

Pamela May 18, 2011 at 10:40 am

Dee, it’s so easy you won’t believe it!

marla {family fresh cooking} May 17, 2011 at 4:58 am

Honestly I have never made homemade ketchup – but obviously the time is NOW for me to do so. Thanks for a push in the right direction 🙂

Pamela May 18, 2011 at 10:41 am

Consider this a gentle nudge Marla. 😉

Lana May 16, 2011 at 6:31 pm

I can so relate to your childhood memories – my mother made everything from scratch, but all I wanted was store-bought crap the other kids brought to school. I indulged my kids a few times and bought them Lunchables after they whined and complained for days. They brought them to school, ate them, enjoyed them (I assume) and never asked for another one:)
I have been thinking of making my own ketchup for months (I make mayo every week) and now you have given me a hard nudge:) Maybe when I come back form Atlanta!
BTW, how long will it last in the fridge?

Pamela May 16, 2011 at 7:11 pm

It will last a week in the fridge. Ours didn’t last that long because Craig kept sticking his finger in it and eating it. 🙂

Belinda @zomppa May 16, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Haha! Love the interpretative dialogue – and this homemade ketchup!

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