HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >

Heinz ketchup-do you prefer any other?

Helios Nov 20, 2004 05:14 PM

Is there really any other nationally distributed ketchup other than Heinz that you think is superior? They seem to have great brand loyalty, and have such quintessential brand association like Jello gelatin or Scotch tape, that it's no wonder that Theresa Heinz Kerry sits so comfortably in her multi-million dollar mansions.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. s
    sbp RE: Helios Nov 20, 2004 07:09 PM

    Cooks Illustrated did a ketchup test and discovered the obvious -- Heinz came in first because Heinz simply has become what ketchup tastes like. It is therefore immune to competition.

    5 Replies
    1. re: sbp
      Sir Gawain RE: sbp Nov 21, 2004 12:08 AM

      ...not that CI's tastings's conclusions are to be blindly trusted.

      1. re: Sir Gawain
        wally RE: Sir Gawain Nov 21, 2004 01:34 AM

        Second that!

        1. re: wally
          sbp RE: wally Nov 21, 2004 06:47 AM

          That's not the point -- wouldn't you agree that the flavor of Heinz is what comes to mind when you think of ketchup? Hunts has far more tomato flavor, but it just doesn't taste like what I know as ketchup.

          1. re: sbp
            Joe H. RE: sbp Nov 21, 2004 06:08 PM

            Ketchup is superior to catsup. For years only Heinz could use this spelling. Simply, it is a taste that I grew up with.

            1. re: Joe H.
              Mod'ern RE: Joe H. Nov 21, 2004 07:53 PM

              >"Ketchup is superior to catsup. For years only Heinz could use this spelling. Simply, it is a taste that I grew up with."

              Agreed! Ketchup is infinitely superior to catsoup. (PETA alert!) "Even Cats like our Catsup!"--a Del Monte jingle.

              But cornchops (Hunts in Iowa) is even better. As for ketchup, for years only Heinz would consistantly use that spelling. (Hunts Ketchup west of the Mississippi.) It's not like Heinz had some monopoly on the word.

              Heinz, Hunts, or Del Monte's? I just prefer ketchup not in squeeze bottles. Ketchup bottle shaking is an interesting socio-scientific phenomenon no one should do without.

    2. g
      Gayla RE: Helios Nov 20, 2004 07:19 PM

      I saw Organic Heinz Ketchup at the store today. $1.49 for a 12 oz squeeze bottle. Cheaper than the same size, non-organic Heinz.

      1. m
        Mari RE: Helios Nov 20, 2004 07:24 PM

        Short answer - no! I only like Heinz.

        1. w
          Wendy8869 RE: Helios Nov 20, 2004 11:05 PM

          I actually like Del Monte best. I know, I may be the only one but its what I grew up on so I still buy it to this day.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Wendy8869
            Sarnie RE: Wendy8869 Nov 21, 2004 04:34 PM

            Nope, you're not the only one. In side-by-side taste tests, I prefer Del Monte. I really dislike Hunts. Heinz is ok if Del Monte's not available.

          2. e
            ericf RE: Helios Nov 21, 2004 12:39 AM

            I found this article by Malcolm Gladwell very interesting. It directly addresses your query.

            Link: http://www.gladwell.com/2004/2004_09_...

            2 Replies
            1. re: ericf
              Amin (London Foodie) RE: ericf Nov 21, 2004 08:58 AM

              Eric, the article you linked, was immensely
              interesting, informative, and educational.

              1. re: ericf
                Sallie RE: ericf Nov 22, 2004 04:38 PM

                Great article. Thanks!

              2. c
                Candy RE: Helios Nov 21, 2004 11:12 AM

                I prefer Brooks made in Canada. Spicier and more robust than Heinz or Hunts

                1. c
                  Carb Lover RE: Helios Nov 21, 2004 05:14 PM

                  For the record, I prefer Heinz probably b/c it's what I'm used to. Squeeze bottle at home, but like the retro slow-pouring glass bottles at diners. Ran out at home, so it's on my shopping list.

                  To shift discussion a bit, what do those who live abroad, say in Europe or Asia, prefer? I know that ketchup is really an American condiment, but w/ all those fast food places cropping up around the globe and cuisines becoming globalized, what brand of ketchup is preferred or available to those living outside of the US? Does Heinz have world domination?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Carb Lover
                    berkleybabe RE: Carb Lover Nov 21, 2004 06:49 PM

                    Until about 6 -8 years ago I couldn't care less about ketchup, I bought store brand. But I loved the McDonald's packets and, eventually, started to buy national brands and really do prefer, in fact, always buy now, Heinz. It has a brighter, more acidic flavor than the cheapies and I prefer it to Hunt's and Del Monte (which, I actually never think to buy.)

                    So, is Heinz the purveyor to McDs or do they have their own formula? Anybody know?

                    1. re: berkleybabe
                      evewitch RE: berkleybabe Mar 7, 2007 06:36 PM

                      Not sure about '04 (when this question was posed) but now McDonald's ketchup is packaged by Red Gold.

                  2. j
                    Joe H. RE: Helios Nov 21, 2004 06:06 PM

                    In Europe McDonald's charges extra for Ketchup. In Belgium and France a tartar sauce type of condiment is served with french fries. Excluding McDonald's I would argue that the best french fries in the world are not Thrasher's in Ocean City, MD or Dick's in Spokane, WA (McDonald's ORIGINAL) or any other, rather they would be what is found in one of several stands in Brussels.

                    1. s
                      sku RE: Helios Nov 21, 2004 11:52 PM

                      I knew a ketchup distributor who told me that Hunt's is the favorite of Chinese restaurants that use ketchup in sweet & sour and other sauces. Apparently, it is somewhat sweeter than Heinz.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: sku
                        LBQT RE: sku Nov 22, 2004 04:50 PM

                        I was at a hamburger restaurant that serves Hunts just last night (Islands), and made the same observation to my sister. Hunt's is noticeably sweeter than Heinz.

                      2. m
                        Matt RE: Helios Nov 22, 2004 09:14 AM

                        I always use Red Gold. It tastes great and, living in Indiana, I like supporting a local company.

                        Link: http://www.redgold.com/index_f.html

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Matt
                          bacchante RE: Matt Nov 22, 2004 03:28 PM

                          My mother (still lives in Indiana) swears by all their products. I don't see them on the East Coast, though. Or perhaps I'm not looking in the right place?

                        2. b
                          Bob Brooks RE: Helios Nov 22, 2004 01:09 PM

                          Here is a link to a fascinating article about ketchup.

                          Link: http://www.gladwell.com/2004/2004_09_...

                          1. f
                            funkymonkey RE: Helios Nov 22, 2004 04:10 PM

                            absolutely not. it's heinz all the way. ketchup by any other name is sacrilige.

                            1. h
                              hasday1 RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 08:13 AM

                              Nothing worse than going to a friend or relative's house and they break out the bottle of hunts. You know you're getting some Hydrox for dessert at that point. Heinz 4ever!

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: hasday1
                                newbatgirl RE: hasday1 Mar 6, 2007 03:10 PM

                                Hydrox! LOL!

                              2. r
                                rochfood RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 08:18 AM

                                Actually, in Cook's Illustrated they rated Hunts ketchup to be the best. Not Heinz. This was a few months ago.

                                1. J T RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 09:18 AM

                                  Hienz Ketchup is like Kikkoman Soy Sauce. On the table, no other brand will do.

                                  Hunts is a close second though.

                                  1. PaulF RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 02:27 PM

                                    My wife buys Hunt's if she is shopping on the day we run out of ketchup.

                                    Tastes fine to me.

                                    1. a
                                      amyvc RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 03:19 PM

                                      To answer the OP, N-O. I like Heinz 57 when I want ketchup. Of course, when I want ketchup, i'm not usually going too high-brow with my food. I only use the cheaper ones when making rootbeer bbq sauce where you can't taste it anyway.

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: amyvc
                                        Gio RE: amyvc Mar 6, 2007 03:25 PM

                                        When we shop Trader Joe's their organic brand is what we bring home.
                                        Runs a close second to Heinz.

                                        1. re: Gio
                                          CrazyOne RE: Gio Mar 17, 2007 07:05 PM

                                          Do you find it tastes enough like Heinz for you? I actually saw this on the shelf today at TJ's, and the local sign artist has of course added "Tastes like Heinz" to the shelf tag because in this town (Pittsburgh) there is no other ketchup that anyone will ever buy. I dunno why they even sell store brands in the stores. I don't know anyone who buys them.

                                          Anyway, we hadn't been using much ketchup recently so we didn't actually buy a bottle, but I was curious if it really tastes like Heinz or they're just joking a bit on the shelf tag. ;-) I've actually been using mostly the One Carb Heinz (now rebranded last I looked as Low Sugar Heinz, but looks like the same formula with Splenda). I tried it back to back once with regular, and there is a difference in taste, but it's not enough to make me not like it.

                                          1. re: CrazyOne
                                            coll RE: CrazyOne Mar 18, 2007 09:13 AM

                                            I recently attended a taste testing for Hellmans who now make a ketchup (and yellow mustard) for foodservice concessions. They put a cup of that and a cup of Heinz out for a blind taste test. They swore no one would know the difference and asked us to vote. They were very very wrong, it was obvious which was which. Heinz has a vinegar flavor that is so much better than all those other sweet ketchups. Don't believe "It tastes just like Heinz" I don't think that's possible.

                                      2. spankyhorowitz RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 03:22 PM

                                        After reading the CI article I tried a bottle of Hunt's and I love it - it is tangier than Heinz. My only reservation is that they use corn syrup and not sugar.

                                        1. pikawicca RE: Helios Mar 6, 2007 05:03 PM

                                          I've recently switched to Heinz organic as part of my campaign to rid my kitchen of high fructose corn syrup. We like it more than regular Heinz.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: pikawicca
                                            justagthing RE: pikawicca Mar 6, 2007 05:56 PM

                                            Cisco burgers in Long Beach serves organic Heinz and I usually don't use ketchup, but since it was there, I tried it. I am converted. If I do have to use ketchup, from now on it will be the organic stuff.

                                          2. w
                                            winebarb RE: Helios Mar 7, 2007 06:47 PM

                                            heinz,heinz,heinz! it just tastes better. more spice and punch. the others are just tomato flavored water.

                                            1. e
                                              embee RE: Helios Mar 17, 2007 07:18 AM

                                              I had always preferred Heinz for exactly the reason given: it tasted like ketchup was supposed to taste like. I became curious after a blind tasting and did, indeed, prefer the Canadian brand E. D. Smith. Smith's is now my favourite, but I'll take Heinz over anything else.

                                              1. m
                                                marlie202 RE: Helios Mar 17, 2007 08:43 AM

                                                Heinz always

                                                1. othervoice RE: Helios Mar 17, 2007 10:54 AM

                                                  I've always been a Hunts fan, but now that I have three kids I have to buy the industrial size bottles, Heinz is the only one that makes them, at ltast that I can find.

                                                  Show Hidden Posts