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how to make tomato powder (3 ways)

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Making flavored homemade tomato powder is an easy way to preserve tomatoes and sneak them into various dishes.

You may wonder why one wants dried tomato powder. 

Powdered tomatoes are a versatile substance that can last over a year without taking place in your fridge. 

It is useful if your garden is packed with ripened tomatoes and you are searching for ways of preservation other than fermenting or canning tomatoes.

In addition, if you are using just certain parts of tomatoes and tossing seeds, skins, or pulp away, you may also consider turning the leftover into a dehydrated tomato powder.

dehydrated tomatoes

What is tomato powder?

Dehydrated tomato powder is a powdered versatile substance made of dehydrated tomatoes. Sliced tomatoes are thoroughly dehydrated and finely ground into a powder.

Similarly, you can make orange or lemon powder.

The powder color varies from orange to red with a typical savory rather than sweet taste.

how to make tomato powder

Tomato powder benefits

Rich source of vitamin C and A, tomato powder is also high in potassium, magnesium, and fiber. Powdered tomatoes promote a feeling of fulness and aid digestion. 

Tomato powder ingredients

The powder is made of tomatoes, one and only ingredient, and their variety and stage of maturity affect its final taste.

Any variety of tomatoes is fine to use for making a tomato powder, However, some are juicier and require a longer drying time. While oval, plum, beefsteak tomato or pear shape tomatoes have more meat and less water, thus easier to dehydrate them. 

Homemade tomato powder

First step

Selecting ripe tomatoes is imperative to get the best taste of the final product.

Wash tomatoes under running lukewarm water and dry them with a cloth.

Second step

slice them thinly and evenly using a sharp knife

slicing tomatoes
slicing tomatoes

Third step – Choosing dehydration method

There are several methods of dehydrating tomatoes, and each has its pro and cons

On the sun

If the weather allows I like to use the traditional method of drying the tomatoes in the sun. Just spread them on the screen or tray and place them in the sun. Cover them with a net or mesh cloth to keep the insects off, and also carefully watch the weather forecast. During the night, I bring them in to be sure they are safe. 

If you don’t live in warm and sunny place or area with high humanity level you might want to a use oven or dehydrator. 

spreading tomatoes on a baking tray
spreading tomatoes on a baking tray

Dehydrate tomatoes in the oven

Similarly, you can use the oven at the low temperature, the fan setting help to dry them faster.  Instead of drying them for several hours. I set the fan to 150 C (300F) for 40 minutes, then turn them and continue the drying for additional 20 minutes. Swith off the oven and let them in without opening the oven till the next day. Mine tomatoes slices were dry completely the next day.

During the drying process, check the tomatoes, rotate the rack, turn them or remove those already fully dry.

Using dehydrator

A food dehydrator is also a good option when you are in a hurry.  You can dry tomato slices with or without skin. Removing the tomato’s skin before drying in the dehydrator is a smart idea as it will faster the drying process. The easy way to remove the skin is to boil the tomatoes for one minute. Cool them under cold water and remove the skin, but don’t throw it away. Dried tomato skin can also be used in the powder!

Make thin slices and place them on the racks to dry with the skin on a separate tray. Use a low setting as you want to dry them gently.

dehydrated tomato powder
through a sieve

Fourth step – Test for dryness

No matter which method you select, ensure that your tomatoes are dry and brittle and that all the moisture is gone. Otherwise, residual moisture is unable to grind into smooth and fine powder. Moreover, the tomato powder will most likely develop mold. 

Fifth step – Making tomato powder

Use a blender, food processor, or coffee grinder to grind the dried tomatoes into a fine powder. 

You can sift the powdered tomatoes through a sieve to achieve smooth and fine powder. This will remove the larger pieces that must go through the grinding process again. 

using Vitamix to grind them finely
using Vitamix to grind them finely

storing tomato powder

You can store the dried powdered tomatoes in an airtight container for over one year. It will not allow the moisture to enter. 

How to use tomato powder

Powdered tomatoes consistency allows to use it efficiently to enrich the taste, color, and nutritional value of any food.

Dehydrated tomato powder is versatile substance packed with nutrients that enrich our sauces, gravies, or even soup. 

Sprinkle this tasty homemade powdered tomatoes on sun dried tomato pasta, pizza or chili scrambled eggs.

If you want a glass of tomato juice for breakfast, stir two tablespoons into a cup of cold water and your morning juice is ready.

homemade tomato powder

Tomato bouillon substitute

Similarly, stir one tablespoon of powdered tomatoes into one cup of boiling water and make this spicy tomato soup. Add a little bit of onion, garlic, and herbs, your quick lunch is yummy.

Can you freeze dried tomato powder?

You can extend its shelf life by storing it in the refrigerator or freezer. You can use the air-tight freezer bags to remove as much air as possible before sealing.

Can you make tomato sauce from powder?

Simply by mixing tomato powder with water, you can make flavorful tomato sauce. Simmer the mixture over low to medium heat while stirring till the powder fully disperse and thicken the sauce. The ratio differs based on the desired consistency and thickness of your final sauce. I suggest starting from 1 part of water to 1 part of tomato powder and adding either tomato powder or water to achieve your desired consistency.
Adding oregano and garlic to this sauce makes a wonderful pizza sauce at any time of the season.

powdered tomatoes
Yield: 10 servings (1 tablespoon = one serving)

How to make tomato powder and 3 ways to dry tomatoes

homemade dried tomatoes

Making versatile and flavored tomato powder is an easy way to preserve tomatoes and sneak them into various dishes.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Additional Time 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 kg (2.2 lbs) fresh tomatoes
  • parchment paper

Instructions

  1. Wash tomatoes under running lukewarm water and dry them with a cloth.
  2. Make thin slices using a sharp knife

Dehydrate the tomatoes
in the oven

  1. Spread tomato slices on a baking tray with parchment paper
  2. Place them in the oven fan set to 300F (150 C) for 40 minutes, then turn them and keep them another 20 minutes in the oven. Then turn the oven fan off, leaving the tomato slices in the oven until the next morning.

On the sun

  1. Spread tomato slices on the screen or tray and place them in the sun.
  2. Cover them with a net or mesh cloth to keep the insects off, and also carefully watch the weather forecast. Bring them in for the night to be sure they are safe. 
  3. During the drying process, check the tomatoes, rotate the rack, turn them or remove those that are already fully dry.

Making tomato powder

  1. Use a blender, food processor, or coffee grinder to grind the dried tomatoes into a fine powder. 
  2. You can sift the powder through a sieve to achieve a smooth and fine powder. This will remove the larger pieces that must go through the grinding process again. 

Notes

Tip for faster drying

  • Use a food dehydrator to faster the drying process.
  • Test for dryness

    No matter which method you select, make sure that your tomatoes are dry and brittle and that all the moisture is gone. Otherwise, residual moisture is unable to grind into smooth and fine powder. Moreover, the tomato powder will most likely develop mold. 

    Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    10

    Serving Size:

    1

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 2Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 1mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g

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    Vladka Merva on August 20th, 2022

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