How to Freeze Fresh Tomatoes, Step-by-Step

If you harvest a bumper crop, follow this easy process to freeze tomatoes for fresh-tasting soups, sauces and salsas.

Although I grow many different kinds of vegetables, I love my tomatoes best. This growing season, I decided to try out a different type of tomato in my garden. Of course, I planted my usual cherry tomato plant because my kids just love them and they are great with salad.  But I decided that I wanted to make sauce out of my tomatoes. So I planted three San Marzano tomato plants. This type of tomato is grown near Naples, Italy, and is famous for being used in Italian cooking.

As you can see, San Marzano tomatoes are similar to a Roma tomato. Both have an elongated shape.  But their skins are thinner and they have fewer seeds. They have a strong, sweet taste and are less acidic than other tomatoes.

Whatever type of tomato that you like to grow, you can follow the same process as I did to freeze them.

Freezing Tomatoes, Step-by-Step

  1. Make a small “X” cut on the bottom of the tomato.
  2. Place in boiling water for 30 – 40 seconds then remove and place in ice-cold water until cool.
  3. Peel off the skin, which should come off easily but will feel a bit messy. My kids like to help me with this part.

4. Cut in half, lengthwise and remove the green stem from both sides.

5. Use your fingers or a small spoon and carefully scoop out the seeds, which can cause sauce to taste bitter.

6. Once they look like this (above), put them in a plastic freezer bag and take care to remove all of the air before sealing. Then place them in the freezer until you are ready to use them.

Of course, you do not have to freeze tomatoes if you are going to use them right away. But, this a great way to store your tomatoes and bring them back out in the cooler months to enjoy the fresh taste of tomatoes in sauce, soups and salsa.

Noelle Johnson
Noelle Johnson is a horticulturist and certified arborist who lives and gardens in the desert Southwest. When she is not writing or helping other people with their gardens, you can find her growing fruits and vegetables, and planting flowering shrubs and maybe a cactus or two.