How To Can Tomato Sauce

This delicious tomato sauce is made with oven-roasted tomatoes and garlic, and canned using a water bath canner to preserve its freshness and flavor.

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Canning Time: 35 mins
Total Time: 1 hr 35 mins
Servings: 6 Quarts


  • Large baking sheet
  • Large pot
  • Immersion blender or food processor
  • Food mill (optional)
  • Water bath canner
  • Canning jars, lids, and rings


  • 15 lbs tomatoes, any variety (can be fresh or frozen)
  • 3 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp pepper
  • 6 cloves fresh garlic, chopped or 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1.5 cups lemon juice, room temperature



  • Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C).
  • Rinse the tomatoes and remove any stems or blemishes. Cut the tomatoes in half or quarters and place them, cut side down, on a large baking sheet.
  • Sprinkle the tomatoes evenly with salt, pepper, and garlic.
  • Roast the tomatoes in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the skins are wrinkled and the juices have started to release. Avoid browning the skins if possible, but don’t worry if a few brown.
  • Remove the tomatoes from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes. Then, transfer them to a large pot or bowl. Use an immersion blender or food processor to puree the tomatoes until smooth.
  • You can run your tomato sauce puree through a food mill if you want to remove any skins and seeds.
  • Bring the tomato sauce to a low boil and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and prepare the canning jars.
  • Sterilize the jars, lids, and rings by boiling them in water for 10 minutes. Keep them in the hot water until ready to use.
  • Pour the lemon juice into the sterilized jars, using 1 tbsp per pint or 2 tbsp per quart.
  • Ladle the tomato sauce over the lemon juice, leaving a 1/2 inch headspace at the top of each jar. Use a canning knife or bubble remover to remove any air pockets.
  • Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean cloth, place lids and rings on top, and tighten to finger tightness.
  • Place the filled jars into the water bath canner and add enough hot water to cover the jars by at least 2 inches. Bring the water to a boil and process the jars for 35 minutes.
  • After processing, carefully remove the jars from the water bath canner and place them on a towel to cool. Do not move them for at least 12 hours or until completely cool.
  • Check the seals of the jars by pressing down on the center of the lid. If the lid doesn’t move, the jar is properly sealed and can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to a year. If the lid is loose or moves, the jar didn't seal properly and should be refrigerated and used within a few days.

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