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+ servings

Red Onion Tomato Jam

This Southern red onion tomato jam can not only be made with basic pantry staples, it's also a darned tasty accompaniment to garlicky bread and fried calamari. It’s also great on meatloaf instead of the traditional ketchup coating. It’s passable as a dessert topping, as well as a floor cleaner and even a dentifrice! (Okay, maybe I’m getting carried away.)
You can certainly freeze extras to use another time, but do not, I repeat, do not water-bath can this jam. Water-bath canning can post a botulism risk, and no one needs that.
This recipe first appeared in I'm Just Here For The Food.
Red Onion Tomato Jam in a stainless steel pot next to toasty bread.
ACTIVE TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour
Yield: 2 cups


  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 cups thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/4 cup finely diced shallot
  • 2 cups seeded and diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup beef broth or stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 to 10 thinly sliced basil leaves


  • Heat a small saucepan over medium-high heat and add the oil, onions, shallots, and a heavy pinch of salt, and toss to coat with the oil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and allow the onions and shallots to soften, then caramelize for about 15 minutes, stirring often.
  • Stir in brown sugar, then the tomatoes, followed by the tomato paste and vinegar. Simmer until the mixture is thick and bubbly.
  • Stir in the broth and reduce to a jam-like consistency over medium-low heat.
  • Remove from heat and set half the mixture aside. Puree the other half and fold it back into the reserved mixture.
  • Fold in the basil and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and black pepper, if desired.