This is a guest post by Melanie Zook, MA, RD, LDN. She is the blogger behind Fresh Start Nutrition where she offers wellness classes, workshops, pantry makeovers, and nutrition consultations. She lives here in the Charlotte, NC area, and I thought you all would enjoy her homemade ketchup recipe from her new DIY Kitchen Cookbook!
Hi there, I’m Melanie, and I think the kitchen is the perfect place to do it yourself (DIY).
Why DIY in the kitchen?
- YOU are in control.
You know exactly what’s going into your food – no preservatives or artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners, just whole, clean, healthy foods instead of processed foods that are full of unnecessary additives.
- You’ll save time and money, as well as space in your pantry and refrigerator.
Once you stock up on the ingredients you’ll need for a DIY kitchen, you won’t have to buy as many premade staples and you can save yourself the extra errands. Spend some time putting together the make-ahead mixes and you’re done.
- It’s green.
You can skip the excess packaging of premade, processed foods.
- It’s worth it to make some of your meal and snack staples.
They take a matter of minutes using ingredients you probably already have on hand. (But some DIY recipes out there just aren’t worth the time and hassle if you can already find affordable clean versions in the store.)
These reasons are exactly what inspired me to put together my new DIY Kitchen Cookbook*. It covers how to Make Your Own Clean & Healthy Make-Ahead Mixes, Seasoning Blends, Snacks, Breakfasts, Condiments, Dressings & Drinks with copycat recipes that are cleaner, healthier, and more budget-friendly versions of what you’d normally buy in a grocery store. The recipes are designed so you can tweak them to fit your family’s preferences or swap out ingredients to make them allergy friendly.
Homemade Ketchup in the Slow Cooker
Let’s start with ketchup. It’s a kid-friendly kitchen, restaurant, and picnic staple, but the bottled, store-bought version is one of the condiments highest in sodium and sugar (often in the form of high fructose corn syrup). And some of the new reduced sugar varieties are made with artificial sweeteners. By making your own, however, you can control how much salt is added and skip the processed sugar altogether by using honey as the sweetener.
Homemade ketchup makes a perfect summertime hostess gift. Double the recipe, pour into mason jars, and tie on a bow.
It also freezes well (leave headroom if freezing in jars to allow for expansion). Or freeze in an ice cube tray so you can thaw out individual portions when you need them for serving food or when making other recipes, such as barbecue sauce.
Many people are pretty loyal to their ketchup brand, so I knew this recipe would be a tough one to develop. But my Heinz-loving husband from Pittsburgh approves. I hope you do too!
(*FYI – You do not need a Kindle device to download and read this ebook. FREE apps for just about any desktop, smartphone, or tablet are available on Amazon or in your gadget’s app store.)