How Many Tomatoes Are There In A Can? [Diced, Crushed, Paste, Etc.]

Image of tomatoes in a can

You can never go wrong with stocking canned tomatoes in your pantry. They work beautifully when tomatoes aren’t in season or when you run short of fresh tomatoes. To use them in recipes with fresh tomatoes, you may want to know, how many tomatoes are there in a can?

It depends on the size of the can and the type of tomato. 28-oz cans hold 10 to 12 whole peeled tomatoes, while 14.5 oz cans hold 5 to 6 whole tomatoes. You can substitute one 14.5 oz can for 2 cups or 1 pound of fresh chopped tomatoes. This number will vary for diced, crushed, or stewed tomatoes.

Let’s talk about this in more detail now.

Benefits Of Choosing Canned Tomatoes Over Fresh Ones

Tomatoes are available throughout the year.

However, tomato season is from July to September in most places, and the produce from these months has the best flavor.

Those harvested at other times of the year don’t usually taste as good.

So the best way to enjoy flavorful tomatoes throughout the year is to use canned tomatoes when they aren’t in season.

It’s easily the better choice because canned tomatoes are picked when they are ripe, juicy, and full of flavor.

The tomatoes will taste fresh because they are peeled and processed quickly.

Additionally, the tomatoes chosen for canning are usually the best of the crop. They are delicate, moist, and full of flavor compared to the rest of the produce.

Canning happens within hours of plucking the produce. Once plucked, the tomatoes are quickly peeled, packed, and sealed into cans.

This method ensures that they retain their original flavors and texture. There is hardly any nutrient loss.

The ones that go to the market have to endure more travel.

So farmers usually send firm and dry tomatoes with thicker skin that are less prone to damage during transit. The ripe and red ones are set aside for canning.

How Are Fresh Tomatoes Canned?

Canned tomatoes are usually standard green vine tomatoes or plum tomatoes.

Let’s now look at how the canning process works.

Canning facilities are usually located near tomato farms to minimize the time spent between plucking the fruit and canning it.

The process begins with the plucking of the tomatoes. This happens when they are at their ripest to ensure that the fruits are juicy and bursting with flavor.

At the canning facility, the tomato is skinned by steaming or running through a hot bath.

This process uses low heat and doesn’t alter the flavor or texture of the tomatoes.

After peeling, the tomatoes are transferred into cans containing salt and tomato juice, puree, or water.

Some brands use preservatives to extend the shelf life of tomatoes. You can find out if a brand contains any preservatives or synthetic agents by reading the label.

Finally, the tomatoes are sealed and sent for sterilization.

Canned tomatoes will easily keep for a year or longer at room temperature. However, they can develop a metallic flavor from the tin if you store them for too long.

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Are Canned Tomatoes Better Than Fresh Tomatoes?

Fresh, peeled whole canned tomatoes are a great choice for cooking. They taste better than fresh tomatoes plucked during the off-season.

Canned tomatoes are also economical and easily accessible. They last longer than fresh tomatoes.

You don’t have to worry about refrigerating them or using them quickly since they will not go bad easily.

They can also be a life-saver when you can’t run to the store every few days.

Apart from whole and peeled canned tomatoes, you can find other types of canned tomatoes in the market.

These include diced, stewed, chopped, or crushed canned tomatoes.

These versions are seldom as good as the whole, ripe varieties because they are often made from leftover or low-quality tomatoes.

Some of them may also have undergone excessive processing and taste like they have been cooked.

Unless a recipe specifically calls for such tomatoes, it’s better to opt for whole, ripe, canned tomatoes.

They are the next best thing to farm-fresh tomatoes plucked when they’re at their ripest.

How To Substitute Canned Tomatoes For Fresh Ones?

Canned tomatoes

Most recipes call for fresh tomatoes. They will usually not mention how to substitute them with canned tomatoes.

Nevertheless, you can use canned tomatoes in any recipe that calls for fresh tomatoes. You just have to figure out how to make the substitution.

Canned whole tomatoes come in 14.5 oz or 28 oz cans. One 14.5 oz can is the equivalent of 1 pound of fresh tomatoes. This is nearly 5 or 6 normal tomatoes.

You can use this general rule to calculate how many cans or how much of a can to use for a recipe.

So, we can say that:

  • One 14.5 oz can of whole tomatoes is the equivalent of 1 pound of fresh tomatoes or 5 to 6 fresh whole tomatoes.
  • One 28 oz can of whole tomatoes is the equivalent of 2 pounds of fresh tomatoes or 10 to 12 fresh whole tomatoes.

How Many Tomatoes Are In A Can Of Diced Tomatoes?

You may prefer diced tomatoes for some recipes, like slow-cooker dishes.

To find the equivalent number of whole tomatoes in a can of diced tomatoes, we assume that one plum tomato yields 1/3 cup of chopped tomato.

So, one 14.5 oz can will contain nearly 5 to six tomatoes. You can use it to replace 2 cups of freshly chopped tomatoes. It would use 5 to 6 full tomatoes.

Similarly, a 28 oz can has 4 cups of fresh chopped tomatoes, which is roughly ten to twelve whole tomatoes.

These numbers may change according to the variety of tomatoes used. You can refer to the label on the can for a more accurate substitution.

Many people prefer diced tomatoes to whole tomatoes because they are partly processed.

However, it’s a misconception that these tomatoes will break down faster than whole tomatoes.

Diced tomatoes contain calcium chloride, a food additive that helps fresh produce hold its structure.

This ingredient makes diced tomatoes retain their shape and bite for longer. It also makes cooking longer and harder.

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How Many Tomatoes Are In A Can Of Crushed Tomatoes?

If you open a can of crushed tomatoes, you will find a mix of diced tomatoes and tomato juice or puree inside.

Depending on the brand, it may also be seasoned with ingredients like sugar and salt.

One can of 28 oz of crushed tomato usually holds 3 cups of crushed tomatoes. This is nearly ten plum tomatoes of normal size.

How Many Tomatoes Are In A Can Of Tomato Paste?

Tomato paste isn’t the best replacement for fresh tomatoes.

It’s a processed product with concentrated flavor and has a cooked taste that doesn’t exactly resemble fresh raw tomatoes.

Nevertheless, you can use it in recipes to create a thicker gravy or add a tomato flavor.

Tomato paste is usually available in 6 oz packages. Six to eight tomatoes are usually necessary to produce 6 oz of tomato paste.

However, the number will depend on the brand and variety of tomatoes used for preparation.

You can substitute 1 tablespoon of tomato paste for 2 tablespoons of strained canned tomatoes in a recipe.

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