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Can I Substitute Tomato Puree for Tomato Sauce?

If you don’t have tomato sauce on hand for a dish, there are a few alternative tomato products that you can use instead. However, before you can make the right alternative, you must first grasp what a recipe requires when it calls for tomato sauce. When you see tomato sauce in an ingredient list, it often refers to canned tomato sauce rather than jarred tomato sauce.

And there’s a big difference between the two of them. Sugar, salt, onions, peppers, olive oil, and various herbs and spices are all common additions to jarred tomato sauce. It’s a finished sauce with a thick consistency meant to be spooned over cooked pasta.

“Can I use canned tomato puree instead?” you might question if you’ve never prepared your own tomato sauce. If that’s the case, you can get it in a can, and it’ll taste almost identical. Tomato puree in a can is easy to find, but you’ll need to filter the juice to remove unwanted substances. Your puree will also be less concentrated than tomato paste. You can double or triple the amount of puree if you want the consistency of tomato sauce. Also, a pinch of salt.

What are Some Substitutes for Tomato Puree?

  • Whole peeled tomatoes

Mutti Whole Peeled Tomatoes Selezione Gastronomia, Tin, 2.5 kg, (Model:  305604), Red : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet Foods

Tomato puree is a tomato-based sauce that is rich and creamy. It comes in various thicknesses and has a more developed flavour than tomato sauce. Cooked tomato puree is often supplied in small cans or tubes produced from cooked tomatoes. Tomato puree can be replaced in recipes with whole peeled tomatoes, and they have a richer tomato flavour and don’t become watery when cooked.

Roma and Plum’s tomatoes are the best tomatoes to use for tomato puree. Other types can be used instead of these, usually produced for preservation. When using tomatoes in recipes, cut them into little pieces after removing any bruised or broken portions. Scrape off the seeds and skin from half tomatoes before discarding the remaining flesh. This puree can be used to make tomato-based meals and sauces.

  • Tomato Paste

Indira's Tomato Paste, 3X Thicker Than Tomato Puree (450g,Pack of 7), Add  Rich Flavour & Colour of 100% Ripe Tomatoes to Make Your Dishes Tastier  with Ease. : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet

Tomato paste can be used in place of tomato puree when making a tomato sauce, and it thickens the meal without changing the sauce’s flavor and gives a rich flavour and brilliant colour. Tomato paste is comparable to puree and comes in small cans or tubes, and it could also include water and other seasonings like basil or garlic.

A can of tomatoes can be used in place of one cup of tomato puree for making tomato sauce. However, keep in mind that it lacks the same intensity and thickness as puree. If you prefer a thinner sauce, simmer the tomatoes until mushy and then strain through a food mill or sieve. In some recipes, a smashed tomato can be substituted for puree.

What are Some Substitutes For Tomato Sauce?

  • Tomato paste

Indira's Tomato Paste, 3X Thicker Than Tomato Puree (450g,Pack of 7), Add  Rich Flavour & Colour of 100% Ripe Tomatoes to Make Your Dishes Tastier  with Ease. : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet

Tomato paste is rarely found in the cupboard of many home cooks. In various recipes, you can substitute fresh or canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, or tomato puree. To compensate for the shortage of tomato paste, lower the amount of liquid in your recipe by 2 tablespoons. After using the replacement, Tomato sauce should have consistency and flavour similar to tomato paste.

Simply add 2 tablespoons of the strained liquid from the can with a half cup of water to make tomato paste. As the mixture cooks, stir in the water and mash it up. The jar can be kept in the fridge for up to a year. Use the freshest tomatoes you can find and cut the amount in half for the best results. These methods can also produce your own sauce in a food processor or blender.

  • Tomato Soup

Knorr Classic Thick Tomato Soup, 53 g : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet Foods

In a pinch, tomato soup works well as a substitute for tomato sauce. On the other hand, these soups are typically thinner than traditional tomato sauce. To fix this, subtract 1/4 cup liquid from the ingredients for each 10.75 ounces can of tomato soup used in the recipe.

  • Ketchup

Heinz Tomato Ketchup, 397g : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet Foods

This substitution may seem strange at first, but ketchup can work in some recipes if you don’t have any other options. It has a sweet flavour. Therefore it works well as a substitute for tomato sauce in slightly sweet meals. In these circumstances, ketchup can be used as a 1:1 alternative.

  • Pasta Sauce/Spaghetti Sauce

Amazon.com : BARILLA Premium Pasta Sauce Variety Pack Tomato & Basil and  Traditional Tomato, 24 Ounce Jar (Pack of 4) - No Added Sugar, Artificial  Colors, Flavors, or Preservatives - Non-GMO, Gluten

We frequently use tomato sauce to make pasta sauces or spaghetti sauces, so substituting one of these options makes sense. Because these sauces are so flavorful, modify the other ingredients and flavours in your recipe to match.

  • Beets and Carrots

NATURE`S GIFT - FOR THOSE WHO CARE`S Beetroot and Carrot Powder, 100 g Each  (Combo Pack) : Amazon.in: Grocery & Gourmet Foods

These vegetables may appear to be an odd substitute for tomato sauce, but they have a comparable flavour and texture to tomato sauce when cooked properly. The colour, however, will be different. For a nightshade-free, 1 to 1 replacement, simmer with garlic and oil, mix into a paste, then add water as you would tomato paste.

  • Pureed Bell Peppers

Amazon.com: Harissa Spicy Pepper Puree Sauce Kosher By Yachin Israeli  Product 570g : Grocery & Gourmet Food

Are you only going to eat bell peppers? Red bell peppers can be roasted and blended into a tomato-like paste, or a jar of roasted red peppers can be blended. To make a 1-to-1 substitution, simply thin with water or broth. Use anytime tomato sauce is used.

What Exactly is Tomato Puree?

Tomato puree is a thick sauce produced from tomatoes that have been simmered for a short time before being strained in some fashion. Tomato puree is created by removing the skin and seeds from fresh tomatoes, then blending the treated tomatoes on puree mode in a food processor. Salt and some sort of citric acid, such as lemon juice, are added while the tomatoes are mixed.

Premade tomato puree in cans or tubes can be found in the supermarket store. After opening the readymade puree, utilise it as soon as possible before it spoils. Tomato puree from a tube can last for up to a month, however, canned tomato puree only lasts a few days after opening.

If you haven’t produced your own tomato puree, be cautious when using it in a recipe because too much acidity can quickly overshadow the flavour of your food. The main differences are the consistency and flavour strength of tomato puree vs. tomato paste.

The higher the consistency level, the thicker the sauce will be and the more flavorful. The thickest texture and consistency are tomato paste, tomato puree, and tomato sauce.

Is Tomato Puree the Same as Tomato Sauce?

Tomato puree and tomato paste are comparable ingredients frequently used in the same recipes, albeit the other components will be adjusted to account for their variances.

Despite their similarities, numerous differences distinguish these two substances. If you must use tomato paste in a recipe that asks for tomato puree, thin it up with a little water to the desired consistency. You can’t, however, do it the other way around. In a recipe, tomato puree cannot be substituted for tomato paste.

Even though tomato puree is a cooked product, tomato paste is cooked for a longer period. Tomato paste is strained after an initial heating phase to remove the skins and seeds of the tomatoes. The tomato paste is then cooked more, changing its texture from saucy to thicker. Tomato puree has a thick broth or gravy feel, whereas tomato paste has a harder texture that does not spread and is less liquid than tomato puree.

As previously stated, the peels and seeds are removed from the tomato paste. They’re frequently found in tomato puree. The variation in taste and texture between the two tomato products is due to this difference. Tomato paste’s flavour changes as a result of the extended cooking time. Tomato puree has a mild and sweet flavour, similar to raw tomatoes. Tomato paste gets a richer flavour that resembles sun-dried tomatoes as it cooks for hours.

Is Tomato Puree Better than Tomatoes?

A second study found that lycopene from tomato paste is better absorbed by the body than from fresh tomatoes, implying that tomato paste, tomato sauce, and ketchup are better sources of this antioxidant.

Lycopene may help prevent the development of some cancers, such as prostate cancer, according to some studies. Giovannucci et al. published an epidemiology study in 1995 that connected diets high in tomato products to a lower incidence of prostate cancer. The authors expected that processed tomato products had higher lycopene bioavailability than fresh tomatoes; the present study tested this prediction.

According to co-researcher Helmut Sies, MD, Institute of Physiological Chemistry, Heinrich Heine University, Dusseldorf, “the study confirms that processed tomato products such as tomato paste constitute the most readily absorbed supply. Of lycopene.”

Processing or cooking tomatoes, according to researchers, breaks down cell walls, making lycopene more accessible to the body when consumed. When lycopene is taken with a modest quantity of fat, such as that found in cooking oils used to prepare most tomato products, absorption is increased even more.

In What Recipes is Tomato Puree Used?

  • Easy shakshouka

This one-pan brunch dish is very delectable with a dollop of tomato purée in the mix. In 1 tbsp oil, soften half a chopped red onion, 2 chopped garlic cloves, and 1 deseeded and chopped red chili pepper. 2 tbsp tomato purée, 2 cans cherry tomatoes, 1 sliced, roasted red pepper, and a pinch of sugar are added, and the mixture is cooked for 5 minutes. Make four hollows out of the batter and crack an egg into each. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, or until desired consistency is achieved. Serve with toast and a garnish of chopped coriander.

  • Use tomato purée to top a tart.

Preheat the oven to the gas mark at 7/220°C (fan oven: 200°C). To make a border, score the edges of a 375g ready-rolled piece of puff pastry. 3 tablespoons tomato purée + 4 tablespoons ricotta. Arrange sliced tomatoes and a handful of chopped black olives across the inside rectangle. Sprinkle grated cheese on top and bake for 15-20 minutes. Just before serving, garnish with basil leaves.

  • Make Marie Rose sauce

Using tomato purée, make your own Marie rose or seafood sauce for a prawn cocktail. In a small bowl, combine 5 tablespoons mayonnaise and 112 tablespoons tomato purée. Add a squeeze of lemon, a dash of Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco, a touch of sugar, and 1 teaspoon brandy to taste.

  • Use tomato purée in a paella

In a large frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon of oil. Cook for 5 minutes with 1 chopped onion and 1 chopped garlic clove. After that, add 200g/7oz sliced chorizo and heat for 3-4 minutes, or until the chorizo begins to crisp. Cook for 1 minute after adding 300g/11oz paella rice. 1 tablespoon tomato purée, 900 mL/112 pt vegetable stock, and a 400 g chopped tomato can. Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cook for 5 minutes after adding 100g/312oz baby broad beans and 1 sliced red pepper. Squeeze half a lemon over the top and sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley.


To make a thick sauce like tomato puree, the tomatoes must first be cooked for a little time before being strained. To prepare tomato puree, remove the peel and seeds from fresh tomatoes before blending on puree mode in a food processor.

While the tomatoes are being pureed, salt and citric acid, such as lemon juice, are added. Premade tomato puree is sold in grocery stores in cans and tubes. The produced puree must be consumed as soon as possible after opening to minimize spoilage. Unlike canned tomato puree, which has a short shelf life, tomato puree in a tube can last up to a month.