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Sugar-free ketchup

Deborah R. May 13, 2012 09:36 AM

Does anybody make a ketchup without any sweeteners -- natural or artificial? Be nice if it also tasted good.



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    sedimental RE: Deborah R. May 13, 2012 10:13 AM

    All the sugar free ketchup I have tried- tasted terrible to me. I have thrown entire bottles away. The Walden Farms is disgusting.
    I use the Heinz Reduced Sugar Ketchup. It is not *entirely* sugar free but -as close as you can get. It has only 1 carb per serving. It tastes just like Heinz regular ketchup.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sedimental
      Jerseygirl111 RE: sedimental May 14, 2012 11:40 PM


      1. re: sedimental
        GraceW RE: sedimental Jun 10, 2014 06:36 AM

        I also use Heinz Sugar-free. I go through a lot of ketchup.. so I actually water-down Heinz Sugar-free to make it last longer especially since it is much more expensive than regular ketchup.

      2. f
        FrankJBN RE: Deborah R. May 15, 2012 07:58 AM

        I tried either Hunt's or Heinz sugar free and found it unsatisfactory.

        1. paulj RE: Deborah R. May 15, 2012 08:06 AM

          Even if it exists, it's not going to taste like ketchup. You could try doctoring up some tomato paste with other ingredients listed on the bottle (e.g. vinegar, salt, onion powder).

          1. c
            cacruden RE: Deborah R. May 15, 2012 06:32 PM

            I would prefer just having a High Fructose Corn Syrup free one :o Maybe I should try making ketchup with Palm Sugar :o

            2 Replies
            1. re: cacruden
              sciencediet RE: cacruden Jul 1, 2014 06:30 AM

              Any organic ketchup is HFCS-free (sugar sweetened).

              1. re: sciencediet
                ferret RE: sciencediet Jul 1, 2014 06:32 AM

                Heinz has a "Simply Heinz" variety with just sugar.

            2. t
              treb RE: Deborah R. Jun 10, 2014 08:09 AM

              Sugar is one of the primary ingredients, without a sweetener it might taste like tomato paste. You may want to check out some recipes online but, most use a sugar substitute or agave.

              1. t
                TronMaster RE: Deborah R. Jun 30, 2014 03:59 PM

                I too have been looking for a long time to have ketchup without ANY sweeteners that are either natural or artificial. There is no need for sweeteners within the ingredients as the tomatoes themselves and even the vinegar has their own natural sweetness. I guess that if I wanted sugar or sweetener substitutes on my fries and hamburgers, I could just spoon the sugar on it myself . . . but REALLY?!?!? That sounds pretty gross to me. Did ketchup used to have sweeteners in it in the old days of the 70's, 60's or before?

                2 Replies
                1. re: TronMaster
                  paulj RE: TronMaster Jun 30, 2014 06:13 PM

                  Make your own, and tell us if it tastes ok without any sugar


                  1. re: TronMaster
                    tastesgoodwhatisit RE: TronMaster Jul 1, 2014 05:38 PM

                    Yes, I think ketchup has traditionally had both acid and sugar in it. That doesn't mean that you can't make a tarter ketchup than commercial, though.

                    Vinegar wise - pure vinegar is a 5% solution of acetic acid, which is by definition the exact opposite of "natural sweetness". Balsamic vinegars do have a natural sweetness, but that's because they actually have sugar in them - balsamic vinegar is about 15% sugar by weight (from the grapes), while distilled or red wine are very close to 0.

                  2. s
                    shoo bee doo RE: Deborah R. Jun 30, 2014 05:20 PM

                    Westbrae is my favorite. You can find it coops and health food stores. It is unsweetened. I find it especially good on Currywurst, which is just a frankfurter with the ketchup and a good curry powder.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: shoo bee doo
                      shoo bee doo RE: shoo bee doo Jul 1, 2014 07:30 AM

                      I googled Westbrae and see there are a number of versions. I stay with the simple unsweetened, organic version.

                      I also see that they sell it at Walmart if you do not have access to a coop or health food store.

                      This ketchup is really wonderful.

                    2. c
                      Clams047 RE: Deborah R. Jul 1, 2014 03:08 AM

                      Considering ketchup is typically over 20% sugar (more than a Krispy Kreme donut) with the remaining being mostly water, what would be the point? Isn't ketchup really just thickened sugar water?

                      As a reference, Coke is only about 10% sugar. Tomato sauces are about 4%.

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Clams047
                        ferret RE: Clams047 Jul 1, 2014 05:13 AM

                        Where do you get that from? This is from Heinz's site.


                        1. re: ferret
                          Clams047 RE: ferret Jul 1, 2014 06:10 AM

                          Where did you get that from?

                          Heinz ketchup (Heinz site) - Tomato Concentrate from Red Ripe Tomatoes, Distilled Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Salt, Spice, Onion Powder, Natural Flavoring.

                          Note that high fructose corn syrup and corn syrup are listed separately so they are not denoted as the major ingredient. Also, 4 gm sugar / 17 gm serving = 23.5% sugar.

                          I did, however, overlook the vinegar. I stand corrected, ketchup is essentially thickened sugar (23.5%) and vinegar water. Asking for sugar-free ketchup would be like asking for a sugar free Krispy Kreme donut. Why?

                          1. re: Clams047
                            ferret RE: Clams047 Jul 1, 2014 06:19 AM

                            I got it from Simply Heinz, their non-HFCS brand. Tomato has naturally occurring sugar. For example, one tablespoon of tomato paste has 2g of naturally occurring sugar.

                            Calling it "sugar water" is a little extreme when the bulk of the product is, in fact, tomato.

                            1. re: ferret
                              Clams047 RE: ferret Jul 1, 2014 09:01 AM

                              Except tomatoes have only about 2.5% sugar content. It would take about 1000% tomato to get the 23% sugar content of Heinz ketchup. Corn syrup (sugar) has to be the primary component to get a product which has 23% sugar content. Even tomato paste is only 11% sugar.

                              Of course, sugar is sugar whether it's cane, corn or from the tomato. Heinz ketchup is 23% with primarily vinegar & water - tart sugar water.

                              1. re: Clams047
                                paulj RE: Clams047 Jul 1, 2014 09:13 AM

                                The tomato catsup recipe in Joy of Cooking (1960s) starts with 8 quarts of tomatoes, 8 onions, 3/4c sugar, 2c vinegar; ends up with 20 half pints.

                                Heinz 'reduced sugar', using sucralose lists 1g of carbs/sugars per serving.

                                1. re: Clams047
                                  ferret RE: Clams047 Jul 1, 2014 09:14 AM

                                  It's not the primary component. The ingredients are listed in order of their prominence in the end product, so in the Simply Heinz ketchup there's more tomato than vinegar and more vinegar than sugar. It doesn't list percentages, but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to determine that the product is primarily sourced from tomatoes.

                                  1. re: ferret
                                    Clams047 RE: ferret Jul 1, 2014 09:39 AM

                                    Actually, water is the primary component - then total sugar (23% by weight).

                                    Guessing you also believe ketchup is a vegetable equivalent.

                                    Did you know gullible doesn't appear in any major dictionary or work check program?

                              2. re: Clams047
                                paulj RE: Clams047 Jul 1, 2014 08:54 AM

                                I have a bottle of organic Trader Joes, that lists only one kind of sugar. In the ingredients list it is right before the vinegar. Total sugars are 2g, 3g total for carbs.

                                I looked up some old recipes, and they all had about the same volume measures for sugar and vinegar.

                                The big variable is the naturally occurring sugars in the tomatoes. Current labels don't distinguish between those and added sugar.

                                All of the body or thickness comes from the tomato pulp, which presumably accounts for the other 1g of carbs, as well carb-free fiber.

                          2. paulj RE: Deborah R. Jul 1, 2014 09:22 AM

                            Ketchup World lists 3 choices for reduced sugar

                            Heinz reduced with sucarlose

                            one that uses agave (pure fructose)

                            and 0 carb one with a lovely list of ingredients:
                            Triple filtered purified water, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, white distilled vinegar, cellulose gel, salt, maltodextrose, food starch, modified, onion powder, garlic powder, egg yolk, xanthan gum, propolene glycol alginate, natural flavorings, red cabbage coloring, sodium benzoate (to preserve freshness) and sucralose

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: paulj
                              Ttrockwood RE: paulj Jul 1, 2014 06:26 PM

                              Mmmmm-mmmm. Cellulose gel!

                              I'm just gonna keep having my two tablespoons or so of real actual original sugar laden HFCS added Heinz about twice a month and pick my battles.....

                            2. globocity RE: Deborah R. Jul 1, 2014 06:43 PM

                              Been looking for pasta sauce sans sugar. Very difficult search!

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