Homemade Tomato Relish

Homemade tomato relish

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there! I was thinking about a suitable post for Father’s Day and decided to post my tomato relish recipe. My Dad loves tomato relish, or any kind of relish really, and while he won’t be getting any for Father’s Day (we live in different states and I don’t trust it in the post), there will definitely be some in his Christmas present.

A few months ago, back when tomatoes were cheap, I thought I would make some tomato relish. I love to eat it on baked potatoes, sandwiches, with leftovers, all the time really. The problem I had with the store-bought ones was that they were too sweet, so I decided to make my own.

After scouring the internet, I finally decided on a recipe from Veggie Mama. Amazingly this recipe used tinned tomatoes which, even when tomatoes are cheap, are cheaper than fresh ones. We can get 400g tins (which are cheaper than the larger tins per kilo) for 69c. The recipe promised that it would taste exactly like relish made from fresh tomatoes, so I decided to test it out.

It turned out to be one of the best relishes I have tasted. You definitely couldn’t tell the difference between it and one made with fresh tomatoes (probably because they both cook down so much), and it was tangy and not too sweet. I don’t think I will be buying relish from the supermarket any time soon 🙂

Ingredients (makes 8-9 jars)

2 onions (red or white), diced

4 tsp minced garlic

6 400g (14oz) tins of diced tomatoes

1 1/2 cups sugar (palm or white or brown, whatever you want)

2 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar

2 tbsp curry powder (I use Keen’s brand, which I love and use on everything!)

1 tsp chilli flakes

1 tbsp salt

Black pepper, to taste

onion in food processor


Place everything into a large saucepan. Heat gently over a low-medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring every minute or so.

Tomato relish cooking

Bring to the boil and then simmer on a low heat until the mixture thickens. Stir every 10 minutes or so to prevent the mixture burning on the bottom. If you do burn the bottom, see the fix-it* below. The original recipe says this step should take about an hour, but I’ve always found it takes at least two hours. Maybe I just like my relish thick.

Delicious easy tomato relish

Sterilise your jars. I do this in the microwave by rinsing them, leaving a small amount of water inside, then microwaving them for 2 minutes on HIGH. Be careful lifting them out because they will be hot. I then sterilise the lids by covering them in boiling water.

Spoon the relish into the jars, then seal with the lids. If the lids have a pop up button, this should pop down as the mixture cools. Refrigerate after opening.

*Fix-it: if your mixture begins to burn, don’t mix it, lift out the top layers, which should have escaped tasting burnt. If you have already stirred it, you can try adding more sugar/vinegar/curry powder to try and mask the taste. This worked for me with my first batch, but is not a guarantee.

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  1. I was bemoaning the lack of chutney and relish in our house this week. I love tomato pickle and your relish looks very do-able. I shall give it a go soon!

  2. This reminds me of the chow chow we used to get when I was a kid – very popular in my corner of Canada. Yum.

  3. How good is it! cheap as chips and totally delicious 🙂


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