What to do with Green Tomatoes?

So we had our first freeze here the other night.  That means end of gardening for me.  I could go all out and try to cover everything each night.  Ya, I tried that.  I just don't have the energy at the end of the day...or the amount of bed sheets it takes to cover up 15 tomato plants !  So instead we gathered up what we could the other day and just left it at that. 

This is what we came out of the garden with...

A few different kinds of peppers and tomatoes.  Mostly green tomatoes.  No matter what method you use, trying to ripen these little green beauties doesn't work very well.  And if you do manage to get them to turn red, they will taste just like those tomatoes in the store during the winter months... I guess that's ok if you like eating cardboard.  But I don't--soooooo I need to find something to do with them now don't I? 

I tried making "fried green tomatoes" once.  I had never even heard of them until the movie came out.  I saw that and thought, hey those look good.  Well, I guess I am no good at frying, they were bad bad bad!  On to the next recipe.  I came across green tomato jam.  hmmmmm interesting, why not. 

So here is my recipe and how I did it.  With a few optional add ins and a delicious way to serve it up.  It is oh so good good good!

  • 4 1/2 lbs green tomatoes
  • 6 cups sugar
  • juice from one orange
  • juice from one lemon

Tomatoes all washed and weighed. 

I like to quarter them like an apple and then cut out the inside to catch the top blossom and the bottom.  Some people like to scoop out more of the white and the seeds, but I left them in mine.
Dice these up into small pieces.

Add the sugar and the juice from the lemon and orange.  I didn't have a lemon so I just used about 1/8 cup bottled lemon juice. I also decided to add in a few jalapeno slices to give it a bit of a kick.  I have read other recipes where some might add in ginger and vanilla.

Let the mixture sit for 8 hours or overnight.  I really only let mine sit for about 5 and it turned out just fine.  This is what it will look like, all juicy and ready to be cooked.

While your mixture is cooking get your jars, rings and lids.  Boil the jars and rings to sterilize.  I like to just throw them in the water bath canner to do this.  Bring that water up to a boil when the tomatoes get close to being done.  I got (7) half pint jars ready.  I ended up with about 5 1/2 jars of jam in the end.

Simmer your tomato mixture for about 2 hours.  It should reach the jelly stage.  Test this by dripping some out onto a plate.  Let it cool a bit and see if it is jelly consistency.  Once it is, you're ready to fill your jars.

Fill your jars with the jam and fit on your lids and rings.  Process your half pint jars for 10 min. in a boiling water bath canner.  If you don't want to do the water bath you can just store these in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. 
Easy as that!

One of my most favorite ways to serve this type of jam is with cream cheese and crackers.  I fell in love with this pairing when my sister shared a recipe of curried cream cheese with hot mango chutney served on wheat thins. Yum Yum Yum!! I also tried it with raspberry jalapeno jam and cream cheese. You can plate them up individually or serve like this...(i didn't have wheat thins today, bummer)

Don't laugh at the picture please!  It really looks better in person :)



  1. Now that is what I call surprise. I really had no idea you could make green tomatoes jam. really. I wonder how it tastes - I guess nothing like tomatoes and still... will I manage to overcome the knowing that it's tomatoes I am eating! What a challenge! Haha, one can tell I am not the experimenting type as far as food is concerned.

  2. Do the tomatoes have a slightly sour taste? I'm very curious. BTW don't give up on fried green tomatoes just yet. They can be quite yummy with the right batter and frying technique :-)

  3. I should have mentioned what the jam actually tastes like:) Really nothing like tomatoes. It is very sweet with a hint of fresh greeness to it. When you get a bite of a big piece of tomato, they are kind of like a chewy candy. No sour at all. I really liked adding the jalapenos, I just love sweet and spicy food.

    Try it Sonya, I bet you will be surprised!

    I just might try those fried green tomatoes again Brooke, I still have a lot left over :)

  4. That looks really good...I like the addition of the spicy kick!

    Found you through Kanelstrand...happy to be following you now. :-)

  5. The recipe sounds great-- I might try it with some ginger.

    Thanks for sharing!

  6. Looks fabulous! My crew loves a little spicy kick!

  7. Debbie,
    Wow. I just posted a blog party about green tomatoes. I have LOTS of them and need recipes. Yours is the first one I've found so far. Please consider linking this recipe to the Green Tomato Recipe Blog Party. It'd be perfect.


  8. Oh, forgot to add, I am making this tomorrow. Thank you!

  9. Hi! Found you through the Green Tomato Recipe Blog Party! Love this recipe! I just put my green tomatoes in the brown paper bag yesterday in hopes that they would ripen, even though I had heard that they turn red but don't really get ripe. I'm going to pull them out and make your jam instead! :)

  10. I just finished my jam and I am very pleased with how it came out! Love the addition of the jalapenos, I seeded and minced three and added them in. Thanks for this great recipe!

  11. You're very welcome. So glad it turned out for you too :)

  12. That's an interesting recipe! How about using up about 4 lbs of the green tomatos in a Green Tomato chutney? If you're interested, visit my blog at www.ColdhamCuddliescalling.blogspot.com and, if you enjoy the experience, please follow me. Also leave a message, and I'll let you have the recipe - for next year, at any rate! Chutneys go well with curries, cold meat and cheeses. Hope to see you at the blog - and those of you who've commented before me, too!

    All the best - and a Happy Thanksgiving to you all.

  13. Inviting you the Carnival of Home Preserving on my blog every Friday. Hope to see you there. Laura Williams’ Musings

    The most recent edition - http://laurawilliamsmusings.blogspot.com/2012/06/carnival-of-home-preserving-13-come.html - open until Thursday 6/7.


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