Easy Old Fashioned Green Tomato Chutney Recipe

As summer’s bounty of tomatoes starts to wane, gardeners everywhere are left with the lingering crops of green tomatoes still clinging to the vine.

Though we may mourn the official end of tomato sandwich season, these unripened green orbs offer a delicious opportunity of their own: green tomato chutney!

This sweet-tart condiment has long been a thrifty way to preserve the last of the tomato harvest.

With a flavor profile balancing fruity tomato, warm spices, and bright vinegar, green tomato chutney captures the essence of late summer in jarred form.

The chunks of green tomato offer a crunchy texture and zippy bite, while ingredients like sugar, raisins, and onion round it out with sweetness and savor.

While recipes vary greatly, green tomato chutney is often simmered together quickly on the stovetop.

This makes it an easy project for beginners looking to dive into the world of homemade condiments and preserves.

In this recipe, we’ll walk through the simple process of creating old fashioned green tomato chutney using common ingredients.

Easy Old Fashioned Green Tomato Chutney Recipe

Easy Old Fashioned Green Tomato Chutney Recipe

Gather Your Chutney Ingredients

Making green tomato chutney is a great way to use up end-of-season tomatoes and pantry ingredients. For this easy recipe, you’ll need:

  • 3 cups chopped green tomatoes – Look for firm, unblemished tomatoes without cracks or bruises.
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 cup sugar or honey – Sugar balances the acidity, while honey adds depth.
  • 1 cup vinegar – White, apple cider, or rice vinegar work well.
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon warm spices like cinnamon, allspice, ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes – Adjust to your desired spice level.
  • 1/4 cup raisins or currants (optional) – For sweetness and texture
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh herbs like mint or cilantro (optional garnish)

The simplicity of a chutney recipe means you likely have most, if not all, of these ingredients already in your pantry and crisper drawers waiting to be transformed into something delicious. Let’s get cooking!

Cook Your Chutney to Perfection

Easy Old Fashioned Green Tomato Chutney Recipe - Awesome

Chutney comes together quickly on the stovetop or in the oven. Follow these simple steps:

Stovetop Method

  1. Combine all ingredients except fresh herbs in a saucepan. Stir to mix.
  2. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Stir occasionally until thickened to a jam-like consistency.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in fresh herb garnish if desired. Taste and add more salt/spice if needed.
  4. Transfer to jars or containers and allow to cool completely before refrigerating or processing for canning.

Oven Method

  1. Combine ingredients in an oven-safe baking dish. Cover tightly with foil.
  2. Bake at 300°F for 60-75 minutes until thickened, stirring halfway.
  3. Remove from oven, uncover, and stir in fresh herbs if using. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  4. Transfer to jars or containers and cool before refrigerating or canning.

No matter which cooking method you choose, keep an eye on the chutney as it simmers or bakes. The tomato-vinegar mixture can stick and burn easily, so stir frequently and adjust the heat as needed.

Tips for Chutney Success

Follow these tips for the best results with your green tomato chutney:

  • Peel or don’t peel – Peeling tomatoes removes the skin but also some beneficial fiber and flavor. Try a batch peeled and unpeeled to decide your preference.
  • Seed for less moisture – For a thicker chutney, scoop out and discard the tomato seeds and jelly.
  • Spice it up – Play with the blend of spices like ginger, cloves, and cayenne to find your desired kick of heat.
  • Sweeten to taste – Add more sugar, honey, or raisins if your chutney needs more sweetness to balance the vinegar tang.
  • Don’t skimp on vinegar – Acidity is key for safety and preservation, so don’t reduce the amount of vinegar called for in recipes.
  • Cook until thickened – Simmer chutney down to a spreadable jam-like texture so it holds shape when spooned onto dishes.
  • Work in batches – Doubling this small-batch recipe may be too much for your pot. Cook chutney in batches for the best consistency.
  • Let cool completely – Always allow chutney to fully cool before canning or refrigerating to prevent spoilage.

With its flexible ingredients and rustic nature, chutney is very forgiving in the kitchen. Don’t be afraid to channel your inner chef!

Store and Use Your Chutney Creations

Once your chutney is cooked and cooled, you can enjoy it for weeks to come. Here are some storage tips:

Canning for Extended Storage

Follow typical water bath canning procedures for long-term pantry storage. Pour the chutney into sterilized jars, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Process sealed jars in a water bath for 15 minutes. Unopened jars will keep for 12+ months. Refrigerate after opening.


For quick and easy storage without canning, transfer chutney to clean jars, containers or bowls. Press plastic wrap directly on the surface before sealing lids. Refrigerate for up to 4-6 weeks.


Chutney can also be frozen for longer storage. Let cool completely, then freeze in airtight containers or freezer bags. Thaw in the refrigerator before serving.

No matter how you store it, green tomato chutney adds a pop of flavor to:

  • Sandwiches and burgers
  • Charcuterie and cheese boards
  • Fish, pork, chicken or meat dishes
  • Eggs, toast or biscuits
  • Crackers or flatbreads
  • Stir fries or grain bowls
  • Dips and spreads
  • Gifts, care packages and holiday baskets

Get creative with this versatile condiment! How will you use your homemade green tomato chutney creations?

More Ways to Use Up Green Tomatoes

If your vine is still overflowing, put those green tomatoes to good use in these recipes too:

  • Green Tomato Salsa – Swap green for red in your favorite homemade salsa recipe for a tangy twist.
  • Green Tomato Relish – Spicy and sweet, relish uses green tomatoes, onions, bell peppers and vinegar.
  • Green Tomato Pie – Bake green tomatoes into a hearty pie with cheese, bacon, spices and a crisp top crust.
  • Fried Green Tomatoes – Slice and fry green tomatoes for an Southern classic appetizer or side.
  • Green Tomato Soup – Puree green tomatoes with broth and cream for a rich, full-flavored soup.
  • Green Tomato Preserves – Cook sliced green tomatoes in sugar syrup for a stunning scarlet jam.

With an abundance of ways to cook them, don’t let those green tomatoes go to waste! What other creative recipes would you recommend?

The History of Green Tomato Chutney

While it may seem like a modern creation, green tomato chutney has been around for centuries.


The practice of making fruit and vegetable chutneys likely began in India as a way to preserve seasonal produce. Traditional Indian chutneys feature fresh herbs and spices like chili, garlic, ginger and cilantro.

As trade spread east, chutneys made their way to the United Kingdom in the 1700s. British cooks adapted the condiment using more familiar ingredients like apples and tomatoes, creating sweet-sour blends to accompany meat dishes.

Rise in Popularity

Green tomato chutney gained popularity in colonial America, where tomato plants flourished but didn’t always fully ripen before the first frost. Resourceful cooks found that pulpy green tomatoes made excellent chutney.

The recipe was a thrifty way to capture fresh flavor for the winter months and made use of ingredients on hand. Its popularity spread through the South and Midwest as gardeners looked for creative ways to enjoy their tomato bounty.

Modern Uses

Today green tomato chutney remains a staple around the world. It offers a robust, versatile condiment with a nostalgic feel. Canning chutney is still a beloved tradition for gardeners and cooks seeking to savor the fleeting flavors of summer.

How does green tomato chutney fit into traditions where you live? Share your cultural connections and family recipes!

Health Benefits and Nutrition

Not only is it delicious, but green tomato chutney offers nutritional value as well. Here are some of its health highlights:

  • Vitamin C – Green tomatoes provide vitamin C, an antioxidant that supports immunity and heart health.
  • Fiber – Chutney delivers fiber from the tomatoes, onions, and optional raisins. Fiber aids digestion.
  • Potassium – The tomato chunks contain potassium to help regulate blood pressure.
  • Probiotics – Fermented ingredients like vinegar have probiotics that benefit gut health.
  • Anti-inflammatory – Spices like ginger and garlic have compounds that reduce inflammation.
  • Low calorie – With no added fat or oil, chutney provides flavor for minimal calories.

While nutrition facts vary by recipe, a 2 tablespoon serving of green tomato chutney may provide around:

  • 25 calories
  • 5 g carbs
  • 2 g fiber
  • 2 g sugar
  • 1 g protein

So feel good about enjoying this old fashioned condiment!

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