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  • Writer's pictureDon Hazelwood

Tomato paste; can vs. tube

You know what I am talking about here, right? That age old battle between recipes calling for 1 tablespoon of tomato paste and grocery stores selling a half cup or so of canned tomato essence. Storing canned tomato paste is the worst!

Tomato paste is a versatile and flavorful ingredient that is commonly used in a variety of dishes, from soups and stews to sauces and dips. It is made by cooking tomatoes down to a thick, concentrated paste, which helps to intensify their natural sweetness and acidity.

One of the biggest decisions us non-professional home chefs face when a recipe calls for tomato paste is whether to buy the red deliciousness in a can or in a tube. Both forms of tomato paste have their pros and cons, so let's take a closer look at each one to help you decide which is the best option for your needs.

One of the main advantages of canned tomato paste is that it is widely available and relatively inexpensive. You can find it at most grocery stores and supermarkets, and it is typically sold in small cans that are easy to store in your pantry. Canned tomato paste also has a long shelf life, so you can keep it on hand for when you need it.

On the other hand, one of the drawbacks of canned tomato paste is that it can be difficult to use. Because it comes in a can, you have to scoop it out with a spoon or knife, which can be messy and time-consuming. It can also be difficult to get all of the tomato paste out of the can, leaving you with a waste of product. And most of all ... if you are not going to use all the tomato paste, how do you best store it?

In contrast, tomato paste in a tube offers a more convenient and mess-free alternative. It is easy to squeeze out just the right amount of paste that you need, and you can store the tube in your fridge for up to a week after opening. This makes it a great option for home cooks who only use tomato paste occasionally and don't want to waste any product.

However, there are also some drawbacks to using tomato paste in a tube. One of the biggest drawbacks is that it is not as widely available as canned tomato paste. It is typically sold in specialty or gourmet food stores, which can make it a bit more expensive. Additionally, tomato paste in a tube has a shorter shelf life than canned tomato paste, so it may not be the best option for home cooks who want to keep a supply of tomato paste on hand for long periods of time.

In conclusion, both canned tomato paste and tomato paste in a tube have their pros and cons. Canned tomato paste is widely available and inexpensive, but it can be messy and difficult to use. In contrast, tomato paste in a tube offers a more convenient and mess-free option, but it is not as widely available and has a shorter shelf life. Ultimately, the best option for you will depend on your individual needs and preferences.

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