Ketchup is the classic condiment, but in modern times it has strayed wildly from what it once was. The good news is that homemade ketchup is actually quite healthy, and when it’s fermented even more so. Plus, it’s super easy to make! Here’s how to make fermented ketchup.
Did you know that ketchup started out as a fermented fish sauce, often made with guts and entrails? Doesn’t sound too appetizing to me. But at least it was fermented!
It then somehow transformed into a mushroom sauce, usually made with wild mushrooms, with other variations made with walnuts. I still sometimes see recipes for mushroom ketchup, which sounds pretty tasty to me, so I may give that one a try someday.
Ketchup made with tomatoes didn’t start showing up until the late 1800’s, and was soon thereafter made and bottled commercially. This is pretty much how we’ve been eating ketchup for the past 150 years, from a bottle that was bought in a grocery store.
The unfortunate thing is that most ketchup is filled with sugar (often high fructose corn syrup) and other weird ingredients, and has also become a staple in many kids diets.
Even most organic ketchup has some kind of sugar in it, with the only exception that I’ve found is Primal Kitchen Unsweetened Ketchup (which is pretty good, I might add).
Commercially made ketchup has been passing as a “vegetable” for far too long!
Fermented Ketchup Recipe
I’m going to admit that I actually am not a ketchup lover, never really have been. No, not even on french fries. I prefer mustard over pretty much everything, particularly a spicy dijon.
This of course involves Russian dressing, which has ketchup as an ingredient. So, I decided to make this fermented version, which makes it tastier and a bit tangier, much more to my liking.
What you will need
You will also need to use a bit of brine from another ferment to kick start the fermentation. This can be from fermented sauerkraut, dilly beans, cucumber pickles, cherry tomatoes, or another vegetable ferment.
To make the ketchup, mix the tomato paste, brine from another ferment, apple cider vinegar, honey, salt, and spices in a bowl.
And stir it all together. Don’t you like recipes like that?
This ketchup is actually pretty darn tasty just like this, but I find that fermenting it for just a few days makes it even better.
Put the mixture into a quart jar and top loosely with a lid. If you have a fermentation airlock system feel free to use it if you wish, but this is a fairly quick and easy ferment so I didn’t bother with it.
Put in a dark and quiet corner of your kitchen for 3-4 days, then store in the refrigerator. I transferred it into a pint jar, and it was filled exactly to the brim. You can leave it in the quart jar if you want, though.
I am really pleased with how this ketchup turned out! I used the brine from my fermented dilly beans, which it gave it a slight dill pickle flavor that I totally love.
This ketchup can be used just like you would normally, french fries and all.
I made some sweet potato and parsnip fries that paired deliciously with this ketchup! I didn’t even miss my usual dijon mustard. Yum!
Now I am one step closer to that Reuben sandwich! Plus I have another healthy homemade condiment in my arsenal. Can’t beat that!
Homemade Fermented Condiment Recipes
Learn how easy and delicious it is to make your own fermented condiments and sauces!
Fermented Ketchup Recipe
- Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir until well combined.
- Transfer the ketchup into a quart jar and place the lid on loosely. You can alternatively use a fermentation airlock system.
- Place the jar into a dark corner of your kitchen for 3-4 days to ferment. Once fermented, store in the refrigerator.
- Fermented ketchup should last for at least a few months in the refrigerator.