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5 Simple Tomato Paste Substitutes for Delicious Recipes

Ever found yourself in the middle of a cooking frenzy, only to realize you’re fresh out of tomato paste? It happens to the best of us.

Tomato paste is a kitchen staple, known for its thick texture and rich flavor, making it the secret sauce behind many delicious dishes.

Yet, the culinary adventure doesn’t have to end there.

Luckily, the kitchen is a place of creativity and innovation, and there are some amazing alternatives you can use that are sitting in your pantry or fridge right now.

Whether you’re whipping up a hearty stew or a tangy marinara, these substitutes will ensure your meals remain on point without a hitch.

1 – Tomato Sauce or Tomato Puree

If you’ve run out of tomato paste, don’t sweat it. Tomato sauce or puree is a fantastic swap.

This substitute is great because you likely already have it in your kitchen. It’s smoother and thinner than tomato paste but packs a similar tomatoey punch.

To use it instead of tomato paste, remember it’s all about reducing it. Simmer your tomato sauce or puree in a pot until it thickens up.

Aim for a 3:1 ratio – if your recipe needs one tablespoon of tomato paste, use three tablespoons of sauce or puree.

And hey, if you’re curious about other life-saving swaps, check out these handy tomato sauce substitutes. Just keep it simmering until you hit that rich, thick consistency you’re after.

2 – Ketchup

Ketchup? For real? Yep, it’s a game-changer. Ketchup can be a sweet and tangy stand-in for tomato paste in a pinch.

Most of us have a bottle lurking in the fridge, making it a super easy and convenient option. Ketchup is sweeter and has added vinegar, which can add a nice zing to your dishes.

Use it in a 1:1 ratio. This means if your recipe needs one tablespoon of tomato paste, go ahead and use one tablespoon of ketchup.

Stir it into your cooking just like you would with paste. It’s especially great in those dishes where a slight sweetness isn’t in the right place.

And if you’re on the hunt for other quick fixes, don’t miss these awesome ketchup substitutes. Keep it simple, folks.

3 – Canned Tomatoes

Canned tomatoes are your next best friend when tomato paste is nowhere to be found.

Why? Because they’re tomato paste waiting to happen. They’re tomatoes—just canned. You probably have a can or two in your pantry, making them a convenient choice.

To use them as a substitute, you have to blend them up and cook the liquid off until it’s nice and thick. Aim for a 2:1 ratio; use two tablespoons of your blended, cooked-down tomatoes for every tablespoon of paste your recipe calls for.

It’s perfect for when your dish needs that tomato richness. And hey, if canned tomatoes have run out, too, no worries!

Check out these equally awesome canned tomato substitutes. Keep it easy; keep it tasty.

4 – Fresh Tomatoes

Got fresh tomatoes? Perfect! They’re a natural and easy stand-in for tomato paste.

Fresh tomatoes work great because they’re the real deal – just less concentrated. To turn them into a substitute, chop them up and cook them down to reduce the moisture.

You’re aiming for a thicker, paste-like consistency. The swap ratio should be about 4:1.

This means for every tablespoon of tomato paste needed, use about four tablespoons of chopped, cooked-down fresh tomatoes.

This method adds a fresh, slightly less intense tomato flavor to your dishes. It’s a straightforward fix that keeps your cooking on track without fuss.

5 – Tomato Soup

Tomato soup might be the wildcard you never thought of using.

It works great as a tomato paste substitute because, guess what, it’s made of tomatoes! Plus, it’s something many of us already have in our cupboards.

To use tomato soup instead of tomato paste it’s all about understanding it’s a bit thinner. You’ll want to use it in recipes where its soupy nature will keep the dish’s texture manageable.

The swap ratio? Use a 1:1 ratio. If your recipe needs a tablespoon of tomato paste, use a tablespoon of tomato soup. It’s that easy.

Tomato soup is perfect for adding that tomato flavor without the thickness of the paste. Remember, it might add a bit of extra liquid, but you’re all good in soups, stews, and sauces.

Keep it simple and keep cooking.