Too many tomatoes? Easy “Sun-Dried Tomatoes” to the Rescue!

As I’ve mentioned, I LOVE fresh tomato time.  However, even with enjoying them at EVERY meal I still often have more than I can use and/or give away.  The quickest and easiest way I’ve found to deal with the excess is to dry them!easy tomatoes

In case you haven’t checked lately, a tiny little jar of sun-dried tomatoes costs at least $5 at the store – and I can make them at home for a fraction of the cost – plus I grew them myself, so I know they are organic!  Score.

Here is my easy and pretty much fool-proof method – the only way I’ve messed these up is to forget about them for too long – but luckily they smell delicious so that doesn’t happen often.

Fake “sun-dried” tomatoes

a bunch of tomatoes – if you have several pans you can easily use 20 or 30 tomatoes

extra virgin olive oil

sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper

any other seasonings you like (Italian mix, fresh chopped garlic, etc.)

Step one:  slice your tomatoes in half if they are small or slices if they are large.  Roma or cherry tomatoes work particularly well, but you can technically use any variety.


Step two:  Place tomatoes in a 9×13 glass pan.  Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, etc.

Step three:  Bake in the oven at anywhere from 175 to 225 until they start to shrivel.  I’ll often start these at bedtime, stick them in the oven at 175 and they are perfect by morning – but you’ll need to play around with your oven until you get the temp and time just right.

Step four:  Cool and then enjoy on pizzas, in pasta, in dips, with cheese & crackers, etc.

These freeze VERY well – I typically make up a few bags of them and we enjoy them all year round!

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  1. I’ve never posted my similar recipe for Fake sundried tomatoes, so I know you didn’t steal it from me!! It was just something I came up with a few years ago when I had a large quantity of cherry tomatoes. My variation is only cherry tomatoes and olive oil in glass pans in the oven. I do poke each one with a toothpick so there is a little bit of vent to help the liquid escape when they are drying. My drying times may run into a day or more, but I likely dry them at a lower temperature. The olive oil keeps the skin moist. Make sure you use a sweet variety, fully ripened. I had a poor crop one year and had to buy some from the farmer’s market to make these. They were nowhere as good as what I was getting from my garden and was very disappointed when I found they tasted terrible when finished drying. When sufficiently dry, they will keep for a few months, though I’d recommend freezer storage if you have enough for more than that time. Mold forming on the tomatoes has occurred with those held in the refrigerator too long, so use freezer storage for more than one small container.

    Besides your serving suggestions, I use them chopped up in fried eggs, fritattas, omelettes, tuna or chicken salad sandwich fillings. Whole, added to tomato soup.


    1. Great tips Ken – we do use them in just about everything all winter long – they take up so little storage space in the freezer and taste delicious!

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