Tomato Paste: Tips for Saving Leftover Paste


    No one ever seems to use just the right amount of tomato paste when they’re making a recipe. And, unless you want to waste valuable food, it’s important to know how to store and save leftover paste. 

    Why is tomato paste so important

    Tomato paste is an essential ingredient in many recipes, from pizza sauce to chili. But why is it so important? Tomato paste is made from tomatoes that have been cooked down and concentrated, which gives it a deep, rich flavor. This intensity of flavor is what makes tomato paste so valuable in cooking. 

    A little bit of tomato paste can go a long way in adding flavor to a dish. It also has a high acidity level, which can help to balance out other ingredients in a recipe.

    Tomato paste is an extremely versatile ingredient, and it can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. It’s also shelf-stable, so you can always have a jar on hand for when you need it. 

    tomato paste in jars

    Tips when saving leftover tomato paste

    1. Store in an airtight container: Tomato paste can oxidize and spoil quickly when exposed to air, so it’s important to store it in an airtight container.

    Tomato paste is a kitchen staple that can be used in a variety of recipes, from sauces to stews. However, it’s important to store tomato paste in an airtight container, as exposure to air can cause it to oxidize and spoil quickly. 

    An airtight container will help to keep the tomato paste fresh and prevent it from going bad. When stored properly, tomato paste can last for up to six months. If you’re looking to make the most of your tomato paste, be sure to keep it sealed tight.

    2. Store in the fridge: Tomato paste will last longer when stored in the fridge, as the cooler temperature will slow down the spoiling process.

    Tomato paste is a thick, concentrated tomato sauce that is typically used as an ingredient in other dishes. While it can be stored at room temperature, the cooler temperature of the fridge will help to extend its shelf life. The high acidity of tomato paste also helps to prevent the growth of bacteria. 

    However, once opened, tomato paste should be used within a few weeks. One way to make sure that you don’t waste any tomato paste is to freeze it in small portions. This way, you can thaw only the amount that you need, and the rest will stay fresh in the freezer. Whether you store it in the fridge or freezer, tomato paste will last longer when properly sealed.

    3. Use within a week: Once opened, tomato paste should be used within a week for best quality.

    Once opened, tomato paste should be used within a week for best quality. To extend its shelf life, tomato paste can be refrigerated or frozen. If refrigerating, be sure to transfer the paste to a clean, airtight container. Frozen tomato paste can last up to six months. When thawing, be sure to use only the amount you need, as thawed tomato paste does not freeze well.

    4. Freeze for longer storage: Tomato paste can be frozen for up to six months. Be sure to thaw it in the fridge before using.

    Tomato paste is simply tomatoes that have been cooked down and pureed, and it can be stored in the fridge for up to two weeks. However, if you want to keep it for longer, you can freeze it. Tomato paste can be frozen for up to six months, but it’s important to thaw it in the fridge before using it. This will help to prevent any bacteria from growing. When you’re ready to use the tomato paste, simply add it to your recipe as usual.

    tomato paste

    5. Add oil to prevent freezer burn: To prevent freezer burn, mix the tomato paste with olive oil before freezing.

    Freezer burn is one of the most common issues people face when storing food like tomato paste in the freezer. It occurs when foods are exposed to air, causing them to become dry and tough. While there are a number of ways to prevent freezer burn, one of the simplest is to add oil to the food before freezing it. This creates a barrier between the food and the air, helping to keep the food moist and prevent it from drying out. 

    While any type of oil will work, olive oil is a good option because it also helps to keep the flavor of the tomato paste intact. So next time you’re planning on freezing some food, be sure to add a bit of oil first.

    6. Use frozen tomato paste within a month: Once thawed, frozen tomato paste should be used within a month for best quality.

    Frozen tomato paste can be a great kitchen staple to have on hand. It’s convenient and easy to use, and it can add a boost of flavor to pasta sauce, chili, or soup. But how long does frozen tomato paste last? Once thawed, it’s best to use it within a month for best quality. After that, the paste may start to lose its vibrant color and flavor. 

    However, it will still be safe to eat. So, if you find yourself with some leftover tomato paste, don’t hesitate to add it to your next batch of homemade tomato sauce. Your family will never know the difference.

    7. Reheat before using: Frozen tomato paste should be reheated before using, as it will not have the same consistency when used cold.

    Frozen tomato paste should be reheated before using, as it will not have the same consistency when used cold. When heated, the water in the paste evaporates, concentrating the flavor and making it more versatile. 

    Cold tomato paste can be used in dips or as a condiment, but it will be thinner and less flavorful than heated tomato paste. Heating the paste also makes it easier to measure and use in recipes. To reheat frozen tomato paste, simply place it in a pan over low heat, stirring occasionally until it reaches the desired consistency.


    From pizza and pasta sauce to soups and stews, there are endless possibilities for using up a can of tomato paste. And while it cannot be avoided to have some left after cooking a hearty meal, these storage tips allow you to save your tomato paste and use it for later. 

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