The price of tomatoes currently is one of the reasons it is important to have options for these red veggies. Substitutes for tomatoes can be found in different foodstuffs for flavour and aesthetics.
6 Best fruit and veggie alternatives for tomatoes
Try these options to replace tomatoes when cooking.
You may also be allergic to tomatoes or suspect they are giving you some suspicious reaction. Taking a break from tomatoes can help you find relief or if you are simply tired of their taste.
The alternative you choose depends on what you're preparing and the qualities of the ingredients you need.
Here are six alternatives for tomatoes you can use.
Skip the tomatoes
The fastest and easiest option is to leave the tomato out of your recipe.
In some cases, we are simply conditioned to cook with tomatoes when we can leave them out and still have a tasty dish.
Forego that tradition. You probably won't notice the lack of tomatoes if you are cooking with plenty of other ingredients.
Tamarind paste (enkoge)
Tamarind paste is made from a tamarind tree fruit.
The fruit is locally known as enkoge in Luganda and has a sweet and sour taste.
The paste is common in curry delicacies and has a long shelf life.
Refrigeration will keep it fresh for a while.
A small scoop, depending on the recipe, can give your food that tangy tomato taste.
Pumpkin puree can be used as an alternative in recipes that require tomato paste.
It helps that they are also rich in vitamin A.
To make pumpkin puree to achieve that tomato taste, add a small amount of vinegar to give it that tomato acidity.
Best used in pasta.
Mangoes are typically sweet and juicy and are predominantly used in juices rather than food.
Fortunately, there are some flavours and textures of mangoes that make an excellent replacement for tomatoes depending on how ripe they are.
Notably the unripe mangoes. The best part is they are salt-friendly and tarter so they won't mess with the taste.
Stock and vinegar/apple cider/white wine
Although this is not a fruit or veggie-based alternative, it is a good choice for soups and sauces.
Use chicken stock that you have prepared or bought and flavour it for a rich tomato taste.
Add vinegar or apple cider or white wine to the chicken stock to give it a nice sourness.
Keep the solution refrigerated and you will have an endless supply of tomato taste.
Watch out for signs of going bad.
Red bell pepper
Tomatoes and red bell pepper share a flavour and appearance.
An added benefit is that red bell pepper doesn't leave peels in your food.
You can also blend red pepper to make a puree to substitute tomato paste.
Simply add salt, sugar, and lemon to roasted red bell peppers.
Tomatoes are a staple in many recipes but convenient, healthy and nutritious options exist that can bring more flavour, aesthetics and nutrients.
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