What Can I Substitute for Tomato Juice? (12 Ingredients to Try)

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Wow, it’s your turn to oversee girl’s night but you don’t have the tomato juice for Bloody Marys on hand. That is a serious issue but don’t worry. We can help.

In this article, we have a bunch of fabulous substitutes for tomato juice. Each option is a simple solution to what seemed to be a big problem. Many of them are probably already sitting in your pantry too.

Before rushing to the store or losing your mind. Take a look at our list below of fabulous substitutes for tomato juice. 

In Hurry – What Can You Substitute for Tomato Juice?

If you’re looking for a tomato-flavored drink that isn’t juice, you could try mixing some pureed tomatoes with vegetable broth, or adding some canned tomatoes (undrained) to soup. You might also like V8 or other vegetable juices.

image of tomato juice

What is Tomato Juice?

Tomato juice is exactly like it sounds, the juice from a tomato. In quality tomato juice, the ingredients will consist of one item… You go it, fresh tomatoes. This is a very acidic ingredient that has a powerful and distinctive flavor. (*)

You will often find tomato juice in beverages or as a thin soup base. Yet there are a wide variety of ways to utilize this product.

  • Chili
  • Spaghetti sauces
  • Beer
  • Stew
  • Goulash
  • Stuffed Peppers

We could keep going for hours, but you probably get the point. Tomato juice is a versatile ingredient that is found in many recipes. It can be an additional flavor or part of the main meal. 

What Can You Substitute for Tomato Juice? 12 Ingredients to Try

Since there are so many ways to use tomato juice, knowing what to do when you run out is a must.

Luckily for you, we did our homework and spent some time creating a helpful list of tomato juice substitutes. And here are the 12 fantastic options we have come up with

1. Tomato Sauce is a Must

The next time you find yourself missing tomato juice, grab a jar of tomato sauce instead. This ingredient is a lot like juice yet thicker. 

Depending on the brand, your sauce is likely to be sweeter than tomato juice. Keep this in mind when adding it to your recipe. It can make a good swap in dishes like spaghetti, pizzas, and chili.

To substitute: Add one cup of tomato sauce for one cup of tomato juice

2. Tomato Paste is an Option

Tomato paste is going to have the same acidic flavor as its juice. But this option is going to have a much thicker consistency. If you want to use this option as a substitute, you should use ¼ cup of water for every 1 cup of paste. 

To substitute: Add one cup of tomato paste for one cup of tomato juice

Learn more: 6 Great Tomato Paste Replacements When You’re In a Pinch

3. Try a Few Canned Tomatoes

Don’t overlook that can of tomatoes sitting in your cupboard. This ingredient could be the greatest substitute of them all in some situations. If you’re whipping up a batch of tomato stew, chili, or salsa, canned tomatoes fit in well.

You can drain them and put them in a blender for a similar consistency to juice. Or you can choose to use them in chunks. 

To substitute: Use 1 cup of Canned tomatoes to one cup of tomato juice

4. Fresh Tomatoes Could be the Answer

Fresh tomatoes have a fabulous taste, and they are good for you. This form of tomato can also be an ideal substitute for tomato juice. 

You can use this versatile ingredient in many recipes including soups, stews, sauces, chili, and so much more.

To substitute: Use one cup of fresh tomatoes for every cup of tomato juice.

5. Ketchup is a Great Option in a Jam

We know it doesn’t sound all that appetizing but hear us out. Ketchup can take the place of tomato juice when you are in a jam.

Ketchup has a sweeter flavor than tomato juice thanks to the additional ingredients. This option is also a little more concentrated. For these reasons, it is best used as a marinade for meats or as a base in stews. 

To substitute: You one cup of ketchup for one cup of tomato juice.

Learn more: The Best Ketchup Substitute (#11 TASTE VERY SIMILAR)

6. Tamarind Paste is an Interesting Alternative

Tamarind is typically sour but creates a beautiful paste when mixed with water. You can counteract the sour flavor with a little additional sugar if you want. However, this flavor can work very well in curries, spicy rice, and chili. 

To substitute: Use one cup of tamarind paste for one cup of tomato juice.

7. Diced Vegetables for Dishes Needing Texture

Diced veggies are a good substitute for tomato juice in recipes that can use a little texture. Instead of tomato juice added to soups or stews, chop up some butternut squash, carrots, and green beans.

This alternative will give you a healthy and tasty way to refresh a dish. 

To Substitute: Use one cup of diced vegetables for one cup of tomato juice.

8. Beet Juice Can Be Useful

You can use beat juice in Bloody Marys, soups, or just about any recipe that calls for tomato juice. 

Aside from its fine earthy flavor, beat juice also produces a brilliant color.  These traits can turn a bland dish into a pretty impressive one.

To substitute: Use one cup of beat juice for one cup of tomato juice.

9. Marinara Sauce Can Make a Boring Recipe Amazing

Marinara sauce is usually found in Italian cuisine. This is a great ingredient for dipping breadsticks, topping Italian dishes, and flavoring thick soups. 

Marinara sauce is a suitable substitute for tomato juice in many dishes. However, keep in mind that this ingredient is already mixed with garlic, salt, and onions. While this won’t affect many recipes, it could change the flavor and texture of some.

To substitute: Use one cup of marinara sauce for one cup of tomato juice.

10. Tomato Soup to Save the Day

Tomato soup has a thicker consistency than tomato juice. It is also flavored with various spices and other ingredients. This is a good substitute for many different recipes if you run out of tomato juice. 

You can use soup in tomato beverages, as a base for main meals, and in stews. 

To Substitute: Use one cup of tomato soup to one cup of tomato paste.

11. Vegetable Broth… Yes Really

Now vegetable broth won’t work for every recipe that calls for tomato juice. But you can put it in most and still get a great flavor at the end of the day. 

The vegetable broth will have a totally different flavor profile. But the consistency will be the same. 

Cut back on other liquids when using vegetable broth instead of tomato juice. The veggie broth will be great in soups, casseroles, and other savory dishes. 

To Substitute: Use one cup of vegetable broth for one cup of tomato juice.

12. Grab a Jar of Spaghetti Sauce

Spaghetti sauce is ideal for dishes looking for a little flavor. Most sauces will already have salt, spices, and herbs. Keep that in mind before adding it to any recipes looking for tomato juice.

Spaghetti sauce provides a bold taste and a thick texture. Use this option as a base in meat dishes, marinades, or spaghetti dishes.

To substitute: Use one cup of spaghetti sauce for one cup of tomato juice.

Making Fresh Tomato Juice at Home

If you don’t have tomato juice but have no interest in using a substitute, make it yourself. You can make fresh tomato juice from whole tomatoes quickly. This is a healthier, fresher way to enjoy this ingredient. 

If you want to make fresh tomato juice from home, there are three ways to do so.

  • Use a blender
  • Use a Juicer
  • Use a Grater

Using a Juicer

A juicer is going to be the easiest way to get fresh tomato juice at home.

  • Chop the tomatoes into chunks and feed them through the juicer

The machine will remove the skin and seeds for you. And it will squeeze out all the juice you need.

Using a Blender

Using a blender will require a little more work than the juicer.

  1. Chop your tomatoes up into chunks and blend them in your blender.
  2. Next, take a cheesecloth and place it over a cup with a wide lip or a bowl.
  3. Pour the blended mixture into the cloth, allowing it to catch everything. 
  4. Finally, take the cloth and wrap it around your leftovers and squeeze.

The cheesecloth will keep the skin and seeds from entering the cup. Leaving you with fresh and delicious juice.

Using a Grater

This option is like the blender but a little messier.

  • Use a food grater and grate the entire tomato into a bowl with a cheesecloth covering the top. 
  • Close the top of the cloth and squeeze the juices out.


Can You Make Vegetable Soup with Tomato Juice?

Yes. Tomato juice is a great base for vegetable soup. You can simply add the juice, in place of broth and add your veggies.

Can You Use Canned Tomatoes Instead of Tomato Juice?

Yes. Most recipes that call for tomato juice will work with canned tomatoes. If you are looking for a liquid ingredient, you can make juice from canned tomatoes at home.

Is Tomato Juice the Same as Tomato Puree?

Tomato juice and puree are relatively the same. The difference is in the consistency and strength of the flavor.  The puree is a bit thicker than tomato juice and has a stronger acidic taste. Aside from that, the two can be interchangeable in almost any recipe.

Up Next: Everyday Cooking Ingredient Substitutes

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