Tuesday, April 24, 2012


My kids LOVE ketchup. Seriously. If they eat all of their chicken or fries, they will use their fingers to lick the rest of the ketchup off the plate. Needless to say, if we run out of ketchup, it's a BIG problem. That's exactly what happened last night.

I was getting ready to feed the kids fish sticks for dinner when I remembered that the ketchup in the fridge was dangerously low. I went to the pantry where we keep the "extras" expecting to just grab another bottle. Nothing. Plenty of peanut butter and mayonnaise, but no ketchup. Most people would jump in the car and run to the store for a new bottle. But I had a child napping and there was NO WAY I was going to wake her up to go get ketchup. Besides, I like to do everything myself from scratch, and this was the perfect time to try something new.

My husband is the chef of the house. He's made homemade ketchup before, but he didn't use a recipe and he wasn't home to help me out. So I jumped online and did a quick search. I found a recipe on Allrecipes that seemed like it would work, and I had all of the ingredients on hand. (I can't link to the recipe here because to view the website you have to be a member.)

In-a-Pinch Ketchup (Submitted to Allrecipes by "outnumbered")

1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
2 Tbsp white vinegar
5 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp molasses
1 Tbsp corn syrup
1 1/4 cup water

Mix together the tomato paste, white vinegar, brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, allspice, salt, molasses, corn syrup, and water in a saucepan over low heat. Simmer gently until reduced to the consistency of ketchup (45 minutes - 1 hour). Taste and adjust salt if needed. You can use immediately, but it will be slightly watery.

***if you are trying to eliminate corn syrup from your diet, you could use honey instead. Also, if you do not have tomato paste, you could use a can of tomato sauce and eliminate the water from the recipe. I added a bit more onion and garlic powder because my kids said it wasn't "spicy" enough.***

I didn't simmer it quite long enough because I was in a hurry, as dinner was almost on the table. The only complaint that I got from my kids was that the ketchup was too hot. They are used to ketchup straight from the fridge, so I should have cooled it off before serving. Other than that, it was a big hit. And it was so easy, I wonder if I'll ever buy ketchup again.

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