4 reasons why canned tomatoes are a pantry staple

4 reasons why canned tomatoes are a pantry staple

Canned tomatoes are a versatile pantry staple that can be used in a variety of ways. Here are 4 reasons why you should always keep a can (or two) on hand. 

When it comes to budget-friendly pantry staples, canned tomatoes stand out as a versatile, nutritious, and cost-effective option. Here are four reasons why these humble canned goods should be a pantry staple in your household. 

1. Affordability

Canned tomatoes are a budget-savvy choice, often priced competitively compared to their fresh counterparts. Particularly during off-seasons or in regions where fresh tomatoes are expensive or unavailable, canned varieties provide a wallet-friendly alternative without compromising on quality or flavor. The cost-effectiveness of canned tomatoes makes them accessible to households of all income levels, contributing significantly to their popularity as a pantry essential.

2. Extended Shelf Life

One of the most compelling advantages of canned tomatoes is their extended shelf life. Unlike fresh tomatoes, which have a relatively short window of peak freshness, canned tomatoes are preserved through canning techniques, allowing them to be stored for months without spoiling. This longevity minimizes food waste and enables consumers to buy in bulk, taking advantage of discounts and promotions without concerns about rapid spoilage.

3. Versatility in the Kitchen

From soups and sauces to stews and salsas, canned tomatoes serve as a foundational ingredient in countless recipes. Their robust flavor profile and rich texture enhance dishes across various cuisines, making them indispensable in the kitchen. Whether diced, crushed, whole, or in the form of puree, canned tomatoes offer versatility and convenience, requiring minimal preparation while imparting depth and complexity to meals. Additionally, their availability year-round ensures consistent access to this essential ingredient for cooking enthusiasts and professional chefs alike.

4. Nutritional Value

Contrary to common misconceptions, canned tomatoes retain their nutritional value remarkably well during the canning process. Rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, such as vitamin C, potassium, and lycopene, canned tomatoes offer a wholesome addition to meals. Lycopene, in particular, has been associated with various health benefits, including reduced risk of certain cancers and cardiovascular diseases. Incorporating canned tomatoes into your diet can thus contribute to overall health and well-being without breaking the bank.

Using Canned Tomatoes in Global Food

Using Canned Tomatoes in Global Food

From curries to pizza, here’s how you can use canned tomatoes in global food to explore different cuisines.

In the colorful mosaic of global cuisines, certain ingredients transcend borders, weaving themselves seamlessly into the fabric of culinary traditions around the world. Among these culinary ambassadors, canned tomatoes stand out as a shining example of how a humble pantry staple has become an indispensable cornerstone of diverse culinary heritages. Here’s how you can use canned tomatoes in the kitchen to explore different global cuisines. 

  • Easy Chicken Curry: Inspired by the flavors of Southeast Asia, this recipe is one your whole family will enjoy. Thanks to ingredients you probably already have on hand (such as canned tomatoes, frozen chicken, and coconut milk), you can whip up this quick and easy main dish in no time at all!
  • Riccardo’s Old World Sauce: Elevate your pasta game with Riccardo’s Old World Sauce – i.e. a delicious homemade pasta sauce. Inspired by Italian cuisine, this sauce brings a burst of homemade goodness to your plate.
  • Chicken Tortilla Soup: So much flavor in under 45 minutes! Canned tomatoes, juicy chicken, crisp corn, black beans and classic Mexican spices are all present in this warm and savory tortilla soup. 
  • Shakshuka Pita Pizzas: Combining flavors from Italy and the Middle East, this vegetarian dish is a complete meal thanks to the protein, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats—making it a well-balanced dinner that your whole family will love.
  • Lentil Walnut Bolognese with Spaghetti: Tomato products provide just the right amount of pizzazz to pasta recipes, such as this hearty, plant-based Lentil Walnut Bolognese with Spaghetti dish. 
  • Easy Gazpacho: This cool, classic Spanish style soup is delicious even on the hottest of days. Packed with the vibrant flavors of tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and herbs, it’s a wonderful appetizer or veggie-rich meal accompaniment. 
  • California Walnut Salsa: This nutritious California Walnut Salsa recipe is not only packed with flavor, but it can be prepared in under 10 minutes. 

Learn more about the health benefits of canned tomatoes in this article.

4 Myths about Canned Tomatoes

4 Myths about Canned Tomatoes

From freshness to nutrient content, we are separating fact from fiction to uncover 4 myths about canned tomatoes.

The debate surrounding the health merits of various food products often veers into murky territory, where fact and fiction blur and myths abound. Among the subjects of such conjecture is the humble canned tomato – a pantry staple that has sparked curiosity and controversy alike. In this post, we are separating fact from fiction to uncover the truth behind the purported health benefits of canned tomatoes. Let’s dive in!

Myth #1: Canned Tomatoes Lack Freshness and Flavor

One common misconception surrounding canned tomatoes is the belief that they lack the freshness and flavor of their fresh counterparts. However, the truth is that canned tomatoes are often harvested at the peak of ripeness and promptly processed, sealing in their vibrant taste and nutritional goodness. With advancements in canning technology, manufacturers have perfected methods to preserve the natural flavor and texture of tomatoes, ensuring a delightful culinary experience with every bite.

Myth #2: Canned Tomatoes Are Loaded with Unhealthy Additives

Another prevailing myth is that canned tomatoes are packed with harmful additives, such as preservatives and excessive sodium. While it is true that some canned tomato products may contain added ingredients for flavor enhancement and preservation, these additives are typically present in minimal amounts and are regulated by food safety standards. Many brands offer low-sodium or no-salt-added varieties, providing consumers with options to suit their dietary preferences and health goals.

Myth #3: Canned Tomatoes Pose a Risk of Foodborne Illness

There is a misconception that canned tomatoes pose a risk of foodborne illness due to the canning process. However, the canning process effectively sterilizes the contents of the can, eliminating harmful bacteria and pathogens that can cause foodborne illness. When stored properly and consumed before the expiration date, canned tomatoes are safe for consumption and offer a convenient and shelf-stable option for households.

Myth #4: Canned Tomatoes Are Inferior in Nutritional Value

Canned tomatoes are harvested at their flavor and nutrition peak and canned within just a few hours. Moreover, studies have shown that canned tomatoes are even more nutrient-rich and environmentally-friendly than fresh tomatoes. In addition, they are rich in vitamins and minerals your body needs to function properly and can help boost energy and reduce the risk of certain diseases.

Try out some of our favorite canned tomato recipes today!

Cooking at Home with Canned Tomatoes

Cooking at Home with Canned Tomatoes

Cooking at home doesn’t have to be complicated! Here’s how you can use canned tomatoes in the kitchen to make nutritious, easy, and affordable meals. 

Our fast-paced lifestyles, fueled by the demands of work, family, and social obligations, have catalyzed a paradigm shift in our relationship with food. Time – or rather the lack thereof – has emerged as a critical determinant in shaping consumer preferences. Coupled with the pervasive influence of technology and digitalization, this confluence of factors has spurred a burgeoning demand for convenient meal solutions. In fact, recent statistics show that the global market for convenience foods is projected to reach unprecedented heights, reflecting a seismic shift in purchasing behavior.

Canned tomatoes are one such convenience food item that is also on the rise. Unlike their fresh counterparts, canned tomatoes offer a myriad of advantages that cater to the needs of today’s discerning home cooks. With their year-round availability, extended shelf life, and remarkable versatility in recipes ranging from hearty stews to zesty pasta sauces, canned tomatoes serve as a cornerstone of modern pantry essentials. They are also rich in vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants (such as lycopene) which may reduce the risk of heart disease and prostate cancer.

Cooking at Home with Canned Tomatoes

Here are a few of our favorite ways to enjoy cooking at home with canned tomatoes:

Need some more inspiration? Here are 10 recipes that feature canned tomato sauce