Skip to comments.Canning issues: I forgot to add lemon juice to tomatoes!
Posted on 08/22/2013 6:11:18 PM PDT by goodwithagun
Pop lids, add juice, re-water bath? Keep as is, drop sealed jars into pressure canner? Live dangerously?
Tomatoes are pretty acidic on their own.
I think re-popping them is your best answer. You’ll lose a little bit of nutrition quality, because of reheating them. However, that’s better than a little bit of botulism. :)
Make SURE you use NEW lids!
Lemon juice? I never put lemon juice in canned tomatoes. In fact, I never even heard of it, and I’ve canned my share of tomatoes.
If it was just me, I'd pressure cook 'em the way they are. Single guys can do things like that. ;)
USDA would say you’ll die for sure. However, if the tomatoes are old varieties known for canning or cooking, I’d risk it. Newer varieties bred for less acid flavors do need more acid. You might be happier using citric acid instead of lemon juice or vinegar, though.
Just my $0.02.
you know they didn't always add lemon juice back in the day....its a newer concept.....todays tomatoes are less acid apparently than earlier versions....
of course last year I pickled beans, using my standard pickle recipe....then I read where the vinegar really has to be in a much larger proportion so I did the beans all over again with the stronger solution......so I've been there, done that.....lol
my mother in law is an Italian immigrant (came here legally 50 years ago, took the test became American citizens)....she cans tomatoes every year and never uses lemon juice...just confirmed it with my wife who gave an emphatic “NO” to the lemon juice question...
btw, I did the beans almost right away after the first pickling....they’re weren’t sitting around....its one of my “do it first, read the instructions later” debacles...
I agree. I’ve canned thousands of quarts of tomatoes. A pinch of salt in each jar, that’s all. Never heard of this lemon juice thing, and won’t be trying it.
There is no need to add lemon juice to tomatoes in pressure canning.
If you didn’t know that, you probably don’t know how to correctly process/can food.
I’ve been canning since I was old enough to snap beans. I did not pressure can them. If you reread my post, I clearly typed re-water bath can. Thanks for the snotty post though.
Start here. http://www.pickyourown.org/allaboutcanning.htm
Did you bottle them or can them? I wouldn’t worry about it.
Tomatoes are acidic.
Can’t think why you would need to add lemon juice.
If you didnt know that, you probably dont know how to correctly process/can food.
Times change. So do our veggies.
I’ve been wondering about that. I raise heirlooms, which urban legend claims have higher acid content. My grandfather converted an old chicken coop into my grandparents first home, so I’m pretty sure grandma didn’t have lemon juice or citric acid.
When you get a chance get a pressure canner. You can find them at yard sales, Craigslist, ebay. I’ve canned meats, soups, stews. At 10 to 15 lbs. PSI (depending on your altitude) It will kill anything including botulism. You don’t need to redo your tomatoes
Tomatoes are acidic and even without any additives will seal on their own, so you’re good.
Dang, that's helpful. Not.
I’ve never heard of adding lemon. Maybe some people just prefer the taste. I’ve seen some jarred spaghetti sauces that have lemon juice in them.
Already have one. I never fire it up for tomatoes. The water bath always works just fine.
we have a new vegetative state
I grew and canned tomatoes for 30 years and never used lemon juice (or citric acid, etc.); figured there was plenty of acid in the tomatoes. I never was hot for super hybrids; stuck with old faithfuls. My mom, and her mom, and her mom before her, canned tomatoes as is. You’re probably safe.
But ultimately it’s your call.
We have never used lemon juice in tomatoes, and we never had a problem.
no thats slime mold
I have never added lemon juice to tomatoes. Only salt. They will be fine.
I never added lemon juice ever and I’m not dead yet. But with small kids, I’d be uncomfortable with having forgot.
Because when my kids were small and I was preggers, stuff worried me more and pregnant women need to sleep, not worry.
So do what gives you the most peace of mind so it doesn’t naggle you in the back of your mind and mess with your head.
My self, I’d probably drop them into the pressure canner to relieve my worry with the least amount of effort.
Now that they’re teens, sometimes poisoning them seems almost legit.
Older = Heirloom seeds......better flavor....and scoop up the seeds prior to canning,,,,sun dry and store for next year .....or global cooling/ice age (no sunspots)
By the time they hit 30, they can be a blessing to have around. One of my daughters is a blessing, anyway.
I could see that but, if she was just canning I’d think nothing of using the tomatoe as is.
We’ve never added lemon juice. Besides, dishes that use canned tomatoes usually require more than 10 minutes of cooking anyway. Always cook anything canned over 10 minutes and watch for bulging lids or a lack of vacuum when opening.
You give CONgress too much credit.
But yes, I do the open pollinated seeds myself, and select for the traits that I like. My cantaloupe are ugly, but the flavor is to die for.
I’ve never ever put lemon juice in tomatoes.
Be careful throwing that pressure cooker stuff. You are inviting a visit from the Feds.
This is why I refrain, cause some random freeper assures me that they will eventually be a blessing. ;)
In this case, from a food safety perspective, risk is moderately low, results could potentially be catastrophic, and the fix is easy. If I was going to be feeding it to my grandkids, I'd check the pH, if it's just for me, pressure can and forget it.
My mother never put anything, including lemon juice, in with canned tomatoes.
Leave ‘em be. They’re fine.
Wipe the snottiness off your own face.
If you counted the “pops” on the seals of your canning jars, you pressure-canned them, via boiling.
Whether you cut the time involved by using a pressure cooker to reach the correct temperatures or not...well that would depend on your skill level.
Since you are ignorant enough to think lemon juice is required in “canning”, you might also be ignorant enough to insufficiently fill a quart jar.
It wouldn’t be the first time I came across someone who thought they knew what they were doing...while they were incubating a batch of botulism.
But go ahead, feed that home canned stuff to your kids.
You know exactly what you are doing...and yet you made a very public point of posting that you didn’t know that lemon juice is not required...
Why not just add the lemon juice when you actually use the tomato juice?
Pressure canning requires elevated pressures, generally from 5 to 15 psi above atmospheric.
Hot water bath canning does not require a pressure vessel and is done at atmospheric pressure.
Both types of canning will cause the lids to 'pop'.
Yep but, it does make sense to flavor to taste.
I’d probably add basil to mine but, for now, I’m just buying it canned.
I have the supplies for canning but, haven’t been inclined to do such for now.
Reminds me though; I need to get a couple pair of those canning pliers for safety.
I figured I’d just some other tool and repurpose it but, they don’t cost anything and are suited specifically for that job.
Headed to Wally World.
Wow. Snotty and witchy. I’m only using a “w” so this won’t get pulled. Pops mean nothing. I’ve had lids pop while waiting to be put into the water bath. Pressure canning only occurs with a pressure canner. Water bath does not create pressure. If you think otherwise, you might want to think of what you’re feeding your kids. Now piss off.