Kitchen Hack: Don’t Waste Tomato Paste

Does this sound familiar? You find the perfect recipe only to discover it requires tomato paste. You consider skipping that one ingredient, but last time you did that the chili didn’t taste quite right.

So, you buy and open a can of tomato paste for that critical one tablespoon of tomato paste required for the recipe. Left with 80 percent of the can, you wonder if you can use the rest of it during the week. Three weeks later you find the crusty contents hiding in the back of the fridge.

We’ve all been there before but not anymore. Use this tip to save your tomato paste, save time and avoid waste. Let’s get started.

After getting what’s needed for the recipe, use a tablespoon to portion the remaining tomato paste onto a small cookie sheet covered with wax or parchment paper.

Put the cookie sheet in the freezer until the tomato paste is frozen solid. Once frozen, slide the portioned tomato paste into a freezer bag, label and date the bag.

Next time you need tomato paste, just head to the freezer. Use the frozen tomato paste portions in the same way you’d use it from a can or tube. It’s perfect for thickening and adding flavor and body to tomato-based soups, stews, sauces and more.

Food Safety Tips:

  • Be sure to wash the top before opening the can to avoid introducing dust or debris into food.
  • Don’t refrigerate an open can of food. Once open, always remove the food and store in a new container.
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Marisa Moore
Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN, LD, is based in Atlanta and specializes in culinary nutrition, communications and consulting. She blogs at Follow her on Instagram and Twitter.