Not So Sweet Tomato Sauce (Ketchup)

The problem with having a Thermomix (what’s that? problem?). The problem with having a Thermomix is that, as bit by bit you start to make almost everything from scratch, you start to run out of jars and bottles. I will admit that I feel a bit virtuous when I open my fridge and see jars of home made stock pastes, chutneys, jams, curds, butter, and sauces etc but as I am now buying much fewer packaged products my empty glass jar supply has run dry. I can’t help myself when I see a fresh produce bargain and will venture home with a giant tray of ripe mangoes or kilos of strawberries, and then the hunt for the jars begins. I have bought empty jars in desperation but it seems a little crazy, unless it is for gifts.

This brings me to my beautiful tray of tomatoes. Tah Dah! Aren’t they glorious? £4 for 3kg of vine-ripened beauties.


Couldn’t help myself. So I set about to make some healthier tomato sauce (ketchup depending on where you are in the world) and immediately ran up against my “no empty sauce bottles” issue. I finally gave in about bought one, just one, solitary glass sauce bottle. Lucky it’s enormous.

Store bought sauce contains so much sugar and salt and tends to make my little ones a bit hyper so I avoid when possible. It was nice to make this recipe and use apple for a lot of the sweetening with a lower amount of sugar than normally called for. To be honest I was worried it wouldn’t be sweet enough for Miss 4, as it is a little tart compared to shop bought. But she covered her Shepard’s Pie with it and pronounced it to be “delicious”, the Husband says it “tastes like tomato sauce”.

So here it is, my Not So Sweet Tomato Sauce/Ketchup.

Not So Sweet Tomato Sauce

Not So Sweet Tomato Sauce

Gather together

  • 1 Medium red onion (brown would work too)
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic
  • 30 grams Olive Oil
  • 1 Small Chilli (optional)
  • 2 Small Apples (approx 250gm) Cored and Quartered
  • 1 kg of Fresh Tomatoes, quartered
  • 120 grams Soft Brown Sugar
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 15 grams Balsamic Vinegar
  • 50 grams Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Mixed Spice

And then…

  1. Place onion, garlic, chilli and oil in bowl, whizz 5 seconds, Sp 5.
  2. Scrape down the bowls, Saute 5 minutes, Varoma temp, Sp 1
  3. Add Apples and Tomatoes, Whizz 5 seconds, Sp 5 (will do a slow start from residual heat before 5 secs counts down)
  4. Add remaining ingredients, remove measuring cup and place simmering basket on top, cook 50 minutes, 100 degrees, Sp 1.5
  5. Remove Bay leaves (fishing with tongs works), whizz 1 minute, Sp 10.
  6. Finally, thicken by cooking 10 minutes, Varoma temp, Sp 1.5
  7. Desperately search for empty bottles…


Update: Well this is embarrassing. I just made up a batch of this as our last bottle ran out and realised I had forgotten to list the sugar in the ingredients! So it certainly was ‘Not So Sweet”… I’ve just rectified this and the sugar is now on the list. Remember, that while this does contain sugar it is significantly less than in commercial sauce/ketchup.

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