Tomato Juice, Why it is Valuable in the Kitchen.

When canning large batches of tomatoes, it can be tempting to dump off all the extra juice your tomatoes exude…. Straight down the sink.

But, Wait!

There are actually many uses for the leftover tomato juice. Seeds and all. No extra work. No extra fuss. Just straight into the water bath canner.

Uses for Tomato Juice

As a Drink

Drinking Tomato Juice has many health benefits, possibly even linked to reducing the risk for cancer. Tomatoes are a good source of lycopene, found only in red fruits, is a powerful antioxidant. In the human blood, lycopene protects against oxidative damage to lipids, proteins, and DNA.

Add to Soups or Chilis

I often add a jar of tomato juice to my soups, and especially my Chili. This adds a boost of flavor, water just can’t provide. Beef Stew, Beef and Barley Soup, Chicken Noodle Soup, and Garden Veggie Soup are just a few examples.

Thin out Gravy or Sauce

I generally use milk, wine, or stock to thin gravy and sauces, but tomato juice works just as well. Especially if you are looking for a vegan or vegetarian option.

Boil Rice and Pasta

For an extra boost in flavor, boil your pasta or rice in tomato juice.

As a Marinade

High in acid, tomato juice makes a great marinade or addition to any marinade. Chicken, Beef, Pork, Lamb… they all work well with a tomato juice marinade.

Bloody Mary Anyone?

A Bloody Mary is a savory cocktail featuring tomato juice and vodka. Amp up the flavor, and health content, with your own home canned tomato juice.

I like my Bloody Mary with a little Tobasco, Worcestershire, and fresh Horseradish cream.


Tomato Juice leftover from Tomato Canning projects.


1. Add 1 Tbsp lime juice for quart jars. ½ Tbsp for pint jars. (I use lime juice, but you can use lemon juice or citric acid too.)
2. Ladle hot tomato juice into quart or pint jars.
3. Immediately process in Water bath Canner at 40 minutes for quarts. 20 minutes for pints.

Note: When canning homegrown tomato juice, your juice will not be a deep red color, like you see in commercial tomato juice. This is perfectly normal. The tomato juice you buy from the store is not made from fresh tomatoes, but from cooked tomato paste and water.

When preserving a product, it is important to try and utilize every part of that product. Whether it be meat, veggie, or fruit.

We use the bones, feet, and neck of chicken to make stock. Beef fat cooked down into Tallow, Pork into Lard. Carrot tops, sautéed in butter and garlic. Apple Scraps cooked down and transformed into Apple Scrap Jelly. So many good and wonderful ideas come from the leftovers.

Don’t waste them.


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