Turn ripe summer tomatoes into a sticky, savory slow-roasted tomato jam. Serve it with crostini appetizers, enjoy it at breakfast with eggs, or slather it on a sandwich. It’s so versatile and requires just a few simple ingredients – you’ll absolutely love it!
Whether you have a bounty of ripe summer (Roma or Plum!) tomatoes or are looking for a way to enjoy tomatoes in the dead of winter, turning them into jam is your answer! And you know roasting tomatoes results in something magical.
This roasted tomato jam is really easy to make, it just requires some extra roasting time in the oven to let the juices caramelize and to break down those plump tomatoes.
Then it’s time to serve it as an appetizer on top of crostini (ok, you know how I love my crostini appetizers). Or pair it with a cheeseboard, make a bagel and egg sandwich, put it in an omelet… there are truly so many ways to enjoy it. Naturally, you can also slather it on a sandwich for a new take on the classic tomato slice. Upgraded BLT, anyone?!
This recipe is a fridge jam, not a canning jam. It’s one you’ll get to enjoy right away, and trust me, you’ll want to!
Ingredients for Roasted Tomato Jam
Lucky for all of us, we don’t need many ingredients to make this sweet and savory tomato jam!
- Roma Tomatoes – sometimes referred to as plum tomatoes, these tomatoes are not very juicy and are what is used for sauces and tomato paste. It’s an excellent tomato to use for the jam because cooking intensifies the flavor of roma tomatoes. I don’t recommend using another kind of tomato, as it will likely be too juicy and result in a watery jam.
- Sugar – it’s not just to sweeten the jam, although it does that too! Sugar also helps the jam set up and thicken by drawing water away from the pectins.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – acid is key in making jam as it helps the jam set properly and balances out the sweetness in this recipe. It also helps the tomatoes break down the sugar. You could also substitute with lemon juice if needed.
- Cinnamon – a little unique, yes, but adding cinnamon to this tomato jam adds a wonderfully subtle warmness to the jam.
- Red Pepper Flakes – because I have a hard time not adding them to whatever I’m making. Red pepper flakes bring a hint of spice and add to the savory aspect of the jam.
Roasting Tomatoes for Jam
This is a very hands-off recipe because the oven does most of the work (YES!), but it’s not really a quick recipe. We are slow-roasting the tomatoes for the most incredible, rich flavor. You know what happens when you roast vegetables and they become caramelized and too amazing? Yeah, these tomatoes caramelize and turn into a sticky, sweet-and-savory magical jam.
Originally, I made this recipe using a sheet pan. However, after receiving feedback from readers and further testing myself, I’ve since updated my recommended method for roasting the tomatoes. There were too many size variables in using a sheet pan, and the larger the pan, the more likely the sugars were to burn.
That being said, I now recommend using an oven-safe dutch oven or braising pan to roast the jam. This reduces any risk for sugars over caramelizing and makes it overall more fool-proof to replicate in any kitchen.
With that out of the way, let’s make the jam! First, dice the tomatoes into approximately 1-inch pieces (photo 1). I like to halve the tomato, then halve each side, and then cut into 3 or 4 chunks depending on the size of the tomato. No need to stress over the exact size, just make sure they’re roughly the same.
Then, combine all the ingredients in your dutch oven, coating the tomatoes with the ingredients (photo 2). All that’s left to do is pop it all straight into the oven to start the slow roasting process.
From there, I recommend stirring the jam approximately every 30 minutes, checking it more often after about an hour and a half to ensure it doesn’t cook too quickly, and that you achieve the consistency you’re after.
After about two hours of roasting, the jam will be thick, sticky, and ready to spread away on toast or be squeezed into a sandwich. It will thicken slightly as it cools, so keep that in mind.
A good rule of thumb to see if the jam is ready is to run a spoon down the middle, if the line holds, then the jam is ready! If the liquid seeps back into itself immediately, give it more time as you continue checking it.
Simple Roasted Tomato Jam turns out to be a slightly sweet mixture with a surprising amount of texture. The skins are left on the tomatoes, but they still break down and become soft, adding volume and to the jam, too.
How to Use Tomato Jam
I’ve already mentioned a few of my favorites, but it’s definitely worth listing the best ways to use roasted tomato jam. This is definitely not an exhaustive list, as there are so many delicious, versatile ways to use it! Be sure to leave a comment and let me know your favorite way!
- Make this Burrata Appetizer with Pesto and Tomato Jam
- Slather it in a sandwich – like in an ultimate BLT or grilled cheese!
- Add it to a cheese board and serve with crostini
- Put it in an omelet, or enjoy it with scrambled eggs and toast like this breakfast board
- Use it in a bagel sandwich
Simple Roasted Tomato Jam
- 2 pounds Roma tomatoes
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt, or to taste
- 1/8-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- Pre-heat oven to 375°F.
- Cut the stem end off of tomatoes. Then, halve the tomato the long way, and halve each side again, proceeding to dice them into about 1-inch pieces. In an oven-safe dutch oven or braiser, toss the tomatoes with the remaining ingredients.
- Place the uncovered pan in the oven and bake for approximately 2 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. After an hour and a half, I suggest checking the jam every 15 minutes or so for your desired doneness. Run a spoon down the middle of the jam, if the line holds, it's ready, if liquid seeps into it, continue roasting.
- Once the jam has reached your desired consistency, remove it from the oven and let it cool for 10-15 minutes in the pan; it will thicken slightly as it cools.
- Cool completely before transferring to a glass jar for storage, or serve as desired. The jam will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for about 2 weeks. This is not a canning recipe.
- Reduced sugar by 2T
- Reduced salt from 1 T to 1-2 tsp (halved)
- Increased from 1.5 lbs tomatoes to 2.
- Changed recommended cooking pan. See post for details.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information provided for this recipe is only an estimate. The accuracy of the facts listed is not and cannot be guaranteed.
I love this recipe! I made a 4x batch with last-if-the-season tomatoes, but omitted the red pepper flakes so the kids can enjoy it. Next time I will reduce the salt by half (it was too salty for my taste) and keep the red pepper flakes for a good added kick. It was delicious as a spread on a turkey and fresh mozzarella sandwich!
I love it – tomato jam to last! Sounds amazing on that sandwich, too. Thanks for sharing, Lisa!
I am making your burrata pesto tomato jam appetizer for Christmas, and I made some of the tomato jam today with store bought Roma tomatoes (you know the kind you find in December? Not garden fresh…) This turned out delicious! What a sweet, salty, sticky jam! I know it will be great with the pesto and burrata!
So awesome to hear, Jacqueline! I totally get the need to use canned tomatoes this time of year too – Minnesota doesn’t deliver garden fresh tomatoes in winter either 😉 Merry Christmas!
Do you think you could freeze this ? I’d love to have
It in the fall and winter but have tons of tomatoes
To use up.
Ooo such a good question! I haven’t done it myself, but I’d imagine you could.
Hello! I made this tonight and it is very watery. Is all of the juice supposed to evaporate? I was expecting it to come out more like a chunky apple butter. Is this right?
It still smells delicious!!
Hi Stephanie – I’m so sorry to hear that! It is supposed to evaporate and become pretty thick and sticky once it’s cooled. I wonder if your tomatoes were extra juicy? What kind did you use? Did it thicken up any after it cooled? I’m happy to continue troubleshooting with you.
I’m so sorry to hear that! Do you have an oven thermometer?
This happened to me too. Gonna try it and see if it still has a decent flavor.
I’m so sorry to hear, Brandie! I went back to testing mode to figure out how to prevent any issues in the future. You can see in the post I’ve updated my recommendation to using a dutch oven to prevent any further caramelization/burnt parts on a sheet pan (especially if it was a large sheet pan). Please let me know if you have any further questions or concerns – I’d love to help you troubleshoot. I hope you were still able to enjoy part of the jam when you made it!
I’ve made this multiple times and it is always delicious!! Its awesome on pesto chicken sandwiches and makes an out of this world BLT!!
YUMMY! I’m so glad to hear! Thanks so much for leaving a review, Jen, I really appreciate it!
I loved making this jam! I was looking for a recipe to use some extra garden tomatoes and found this and gave it a try. I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out great. Its a very easy hands off jam and I’m planning on serving it with a charcuterie board.
So glad to hear! Do you know what kind of garden tomatoes you used? Curious if it worked with a juicier variety than Romas.
I made these today and they turned out fantastic. Used a Dutch over so no burning, just sweet sweet jammy tomatoes. Any tomatoes work I had lots of cherry tomatoes from my garden.
Yay! Thanks for letting us know that the cherry tomatoes worked, too! So glad you enjoyed, thank you!!
When cooking the tomatoes should the lid be on or off? Planning to make this in the next couple days if you could answer ASAP I’d appreciate it.
Hi Debbie! The lid should be off. Let me know if you have any more questions. Enjoy!