What can I substitute for tomato paste?

In this concise article, we will answer the question “What can I substitute for tomato paste”. We have mentioned some substitutes that we could use as a replacement for tomato paste along with their benefits and limitations.

What can I substitute for tomato paste?

There are various substitutes for tomato paste that we can add to our routine instead of using tomato paste. These include tomato passata, tomato sauce or marinara, canned crushed tomatoes, ketchup and pureed red pepper.

What is tomato paste?

Tomato paste is a thick paste that is made by cooking tomatoes for hours so that the water gets reduced in it then the skin is peeled off and seeds are taken out. Again, this mixture is boiled for hours to get concentrated tomato paste.

Substitutes for Tomato paste

If we run out of tomato paste in our kitchen then no need to worry because we have various substitutes for tomato paste that we could use in our recipe and make it taste delicious.

So, these are the substitutes for tomato paste:

Tomato passata:

For tomato paste, you can use a substitute that is tomato passata. Tomato passata has more moisture in it because it is not concentrated like tomato paste is. So, if you are using tomato passata you need to reduce the original volume of tomato passata in a pan until it becomes thick like tomato paste.

But if your recipe is not affected by moisture then, you can use tomato passata as it is, no need to reduce the volume.

You can use 3 tablespoons of tomato passata as a replacement for one tablespoon of tomato paste.

Tomato sauce or marinara:

Tomato sauce or marinara can be used as a substitute for tomato paste. If you are using crushed tomatoes and tomato paste to make a sauce for your recipes like cauliflower-crust or breakfast pizza then, you can replace both (crushed tomatoes and tomato paste) with store-bought tomato sauce.

While using tomato sauce you should keep in mind that the recipe won’t be thick as it would be if you had used tomato paste. So, you would have to reduce the sauce for extra time on the stove to get a thick paste-like tomato paste.

If you need tomato flavour without thickness, you should add 3 tablespoons of tomato sauce as a replacement for one tablespoon of tomato paste.

Canned crushed tomatoes:

if you don’t have tomato paste and don’t have time to prepare it consuming hours. Here’s the solution to it. For this, all you need to have is a can of tomatoes. Then you need to strain out all the liquid and seeds. Bring them to a boil.

If you are not going to boil directly, you can blend them instead before reducing them in the pan. 

You can add one medium-sized tomato as a replacement for one tablespoon of tomato paste.

Ketchup:

If you are having another option as a replacement for tomato paste you can add tomato ketchup. But this would not be having the same thickness as tomato paste. Adding ketchup to your recipe would add tanginess to your recipe due to the presence of vinegar and sugar in the ketchup.

You can replace 1 tablespoon of ketchup as a replacement for every tablespoon of tomato paste.

Pureed red peppers:

Pureed red peppers could also be the replacement for tomato paste if you are cooking something in which you need to add tomato paste just to add a pop flavour. And if the tomato is not the main flavour, then you can go with pureed red peppers.

All you need to do is scoop up some roasted red pepper and peel off the skin. Add them to the food processor and puree till they become smooth. 

This will not be as thick as tomato paste but it will add a unique flavour to your dish. 

You can swap 1 tablespoon of red pepper puree for 1 tablespoon of tomato puree.

How to prepare tomato paste at home:

If you have enough time, then you should prepare it at home. Here are the simple steps for preparing tomato paste

  • First, quarter cut the tomatoes
  • Second, remove the seeds and skin of tomatoes.
  • Third, you need to bring tomatoes to boil on the stove. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil until you get the desired consistency. This could take time of almost 6,7 hours.
  • Get it off when ready 

Conclusion

In this concise article, we have answered the question “What can I substitute for tomato paste”.We have mentioned some substitutes that we could use as a replacement for tomato paste along with their benefits and limitations.

References

https://www.eatingwell.com/article/291650/what-is-tomato-paste-how-to-use-it/
https://www.purewow.com/food/tomato-paste-substitutes

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.