Make Your Own Ketchup {without the high fructose corn syrup}

Grilling season is upon us, friends. Yeah, yeah. I know that there's still snow on the ground in Eastern Iowa, but if you're like John and I, you grill darn near year-round. To compliment those burgers and brats (or a gooey grilled cheese sandwich), I am delighted to have Amy from Home and Farm Sense here to share a recipe for homemade ketchup. 

Several years ago, after I began evaluating what our family ate, one of the ingredients I decided to eliminate was High Fructose Corn Syrup. Watching the movie "King Corn" was very eye opening in showing how ubiquitous this concoction is.

High Fructose Corn Syrup is in so many grocery store products, including most condiments, especially ketchup. So, I decided to come up with a recipe of my own, especially since organic ketchup can be quite expensive. I have used this ketchup to create other recipes, like barbecue sauce and cocktail sauce - there are lots of uses for it. 

One of the great things about this ketchup is that it can be fermented if you would like and we routinely do so (as long as we figure out ahead of time that we are going to need ketchup in a couple of days…). Here is the recipe:

Make Your Own Ketchup

An easy to make alternative to high fructose corn syrup ketchup

Prep time: 5 mins
Total time: 5 mins
Serves: 1 quart

  • 3 cans organic or homemade tomato paste 
  • 3/4 cup sucanat or raw honey 
  • 1/2 cup Raw Apple Cider Vinegar 
  • 1 TBSP salt 
  • 3/4 tsp onion powder 
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder 
  • 1 1/4 cups water (1 cup if you use honey) 

Mix all ingredients with a whisk, adding more water if needed for desired consistency.

It's really simple to put together but I do want to note that the honey you choose can greatly affect the taste of the finished ketchup, especially if you use a really strong flavored honey like wildflower (spoken from experience...). If you are trying this recipe for the first time and plan to use honey in the future, I suggest trying half sucanat and half honey first so you can see what you like best. To ferment this ketchup, I add three tablespoons of whey to the above mixture, stir well and leave sit at room temperature for 24-48 hours depending on the season (if it's warm outside I only leave it for 24 hours). 

One other note, sometimes after the ketchup is refrigerated it might need a bit more water. Just whisk in a little bit until its back to the right consistency for you.

Anyone up for a hamburger?


  1. Looks great! My husband is a huge ketchup eater and we have tried homemade ketchup, but the recipe was too sweet. I will have to try this and see how much better it is.

  2. What is the size on the "3 cans" of tomato paste?

    1. I would do the small cans - not sure how many ounces that is exactly. I've only seen the small cans in the grocery stores.

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