This homemade sun-dried tomatoes recipe is super easy to make in the oven and irresistibly delicious.
Trying to figure out what to do with that end-of-the-summer bumper crop of tomatoes from the garden?!
Make a batch of sun-dried tomatoes! ♡
They’re super duper easy to make in the oven, and can be customized to be as herby, garlicky, spicy or plain as you prefer. They can be made with your preferred types of tomatoes, either small batch (with just a handful of tomatoes) or large batch (filling up an entire baking sheet or two). Homemade sun-dried tomatoes are also usually significantly cheaper than those expensive little jars sold at the store. But best of all, they are just so incredibly flavorful, especially made with juicy ripe tomatoes at the height of peak season.
We’ve been making batch after batch of these oven-dried tomatoes this past month, and have loved tossing them in everything from salads to soups, pastas, pizzas, frittatas, sandwiches, biscuits, pestos and more. We’ve also found that — if you happen to make an extra batch while you’re at it — people love receiving these little gems as summertime gifts. And if you pop a freshly-dried batch in the freezer, they can keep there for up to 3 months as well.
Let’s make some!
Sun-Dried Tomato Ingredients:
To make a batch of oven “sun-dried” tomatoes, you will need the following ingredients:
Fresh tomatoes: I’m partial to cherry or grape tomatoes, which cook the fastest and also have the most concentrated sweet flavor. But roma (plum) tomatoes also work well for this recipe is the pulp is hollowed out.
Sea salt: This is the only other ingredient that I would say is a must, in order to bring out those delicious flavors. Keep in mind, though, that the tomatoes will dry up to less than half of their original size, so sprinkle on your desired amount of salt accordingly. (Basically, don’t over-salt!) ♡
(Optional) Olive oil: If you do not plan to use your sun-dried tomatoes right away, I recommend storing them in a jar filled with olive oil so that the sun-dried tomatoes stay fresh.
Additionally, there are all sorts of seasonings that you are welcome to add to this recipe — either during or after roasting — to give your sun-dried tomatoes extra flavor. See notes below for some of my favorite suggestions.
How To Make Sun-Dried Tomatoes In The Oven:
To make sun-dried tomatoes in the oven, simply…
Prep your tomatoes. Super simple — just slice the tomatoes in half lengthwise*, spread them out in an even layer cut-side-up on a parchment-covered baking sheet, then season with salt.
Slow roast. Now comes the patient part — the tomatoes will need to slow-roast in the oven for about 2.5 to 3.5 hours at low heat (250°F), or until they reach your desired level of dryness. You don’t need to flip or rotate the tomatoes during this time, but I do recommend keeping an eye on them near the end to ensure that they do not burn.
Serve or store. Then once your tomatoes are done, they’re ready to serve or add to a recipe right away! Or see below for storage instructions.
*If you decide to use roma tomatoes (instead of cherry or grape tomatoes), you will need to also hollow out and discard the pulp before transferring the tomatoes to the baking sheet.
Possible Seasonings Ideas:
This oven sun-dried tomato recipe is actually incredibly delicious on its own, seasoned simply with sea salt. But if you would like to add in some extra seasonings, feel free to get creative! For example, you can…
Season the tomatoes while roasting. During the last hour of roasting, feel free to sprinkle on some chopped fresh herbs (such as rosemary, oregano, thyme, etc). Or during the last half hour of of roasting, you can sprinkle on some dried herbs and seasonings (such as Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red chili flakes, etc).
Season the tomatoes after roasting. My preference is to season the tomatoes in a jar with olive oil after they have finished roasting. I always add a bay leaf to my jars, plus a garlic clove or two. But you are also welcome to add whatever fresh or dried herbs/seasonings sound good to you (including the ideas listed above).
How To Store Sun-Dried Tomatoes:
If you do not plan to use your batch of sun-dried tomatoes right away, you can either:
Refrigerate sun-dried tomatoes. Place them in a small jar then drizzle with olive oil (you will need quite a bit) until the tomatoes are completely submerged. Place a lid on the jar to seal, then refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Freeze sun-dried tomatoes. Spread the sun-dried tomatoes out in an even layer on a parchment-covered baking sheet or plate. Then transfer to the freezer for at least 2 hours, or until the tomatoes are frozen. Remove and transfer the tomatoes to a freezer-safe bag, squeeze out any extra air, then freeze for up to 3 months.
How To Rehydrate Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Sun-dried tomatoes stored in olive oil are perfectly edible (and delicious!) served right out of the jar. But if you would like to rehydrate and plump them up a bit, just soak the sun-dried tomatoes in hot water for 20 minutes, then drain. Or better yet (I learned this trick recently in Copenhagen), soak them in tomato juice to really amp up that tomato flavor. So delicious!
How To Use Sun-Dried Tomatoes:
There are so many delicious ways to cook with sun-dried tomatoes! I especially love adding them to salads, soups, pastas, pizzas, frittatas, sandwiches, biscuits, pestos and more.
This homemade sun-dried tomatoes recipe is super easy to make in the oven and irresistibly delicious!
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes*
fine sea salt
Heat oven to 250°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Slice the tomatoes in half lengthwise. Place them cut-side-up on the baking sheet.
Bake for 2.5 to 3.5 hours, or until the tomatoes are dried out, keeping an eye on the tomatoes so that they don’t burn.
Remove from the oven. Serve immediately. Or to store, transfer the sun-dried tomatoes to a jar and fill with olive oil until the tomatoes are completely covered. Add in any desired seasonings (such as a clove of garlic and/or herbs), then cover and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Or see freezer storage instructions below.
Types of tomatoes: Roma tomatoes also work great too! Just cut them in half lengthwise, then hollow out and discard the pulp, then proceed with the recipe as directed above. Because of their size, roma tomatoes will need to bake for around 5-6 hours.
Amount of tomatoes: 1 pint is just a suggestion here. Feel free to make as large or small a batch as you prefer.
Freezer instructions: Spread the sun-dried tomatoes out in an even layer on a parchment-covered baking sheet or plate. Then transfer to the freezer for at least 2 hours, or until the tomatoes are frozen. Remove and transfer the tomatoes to a freezer-safe bag, squeeze out any extra air, then freeze for up to 3 months.
I didn’t even know that it was possible to make them at home!!!! Thanks for sharing this Ali :) totally trying this.
Looks very easy to make and it’s looking delicious. Make this recipe in the oven is even easier than I think. Thank you so much, Ali, to share with this recipe.
Any ideas on how to can them for long term storage?
For longer storage try a different method of freezing. Pack them somewhat tightly into a mason jar and fill with olive oil. I tap or poke them to free any air bubbles, then put on the lid and place directly in freezer. I’ve been doing this for years using small or medium jars. Each of my jars gets used up within a year but I bet they could last longer.
I realize you asked the question bc in 2020, but perhaps you would still like an answer.
I am a chemist and decades old canner. You wouldn’t want to can DRIED tomatoes because canning would simply rehydrate the tomatoes that you just spent hours removing the moisture from. I assume the desire to can is for storage room purposes and also for length of shelf life. In that case, my suggestion would be to FIRST can all your tomatoes according to proper methods and store them till you need them. THEN, when you’d like to have some good ol’ sun dried tomatoes for your sandwiches, use a jar of tomatoes that you canned. Canned whole tomatoes work great for oven drying. They do not have to be fresh out of the garden. The canning kept them fresh. Hope this helps
This was super easy. And very tasty. I added a little paprika and pepper seeds plus salt.
Thank you very much for the recipe. I love sun dried tomatoes. They’re amazing. I made a batch few weeks ago and stored some of them in olive oil. However I noticed some white spots in the jar.. looks like salt to me but not sure if this is okay or the tomatoes have gone bad??
These turned out super yummy. I did choose to jar them in olive oil and refrigerate, so was dismayed to find the oil had solidified when I went to get them out the next day to eat…Not a huge deal, but was this normal?
Yes, it’s normal for the oil to solidify. All you do is set out at room temperature for a short while!
Can you use previously frozen tomatoes? Thaw then put in the oven?
I am so happy I came across this recipe when I had an over abundance of fresh tomatoes from my garden. SO much more delicious than store bought. This will be a regular thing in our kitchen!
I’ve made these “sun-dried” tomatoes for years now basically following this recipe. My longer-term storage differs: after drying & cooling I fill freezer baggies a third full & drizzle liberally with olive oil & squish to flatten baggie without any oil seeping out. I use a straw to suck all air out, label & freeze a pile of these. Love to thaw & blend with cream cheese in food processor for THE BEST Spread to top crackers. Family & Friends DEVOUR it!!! Thanks for a Family Fav!!!
This will be my first time doing sundried tomatoes, and I’m so looking forward to getting a bumper crop from my two (yes, just two) plants. Have any of you ever made these with large tomatoes? Would it work if the seeds were removed before sun drying?
Hi Ali, Quick question: Do I need to let the tomatoes cool down completely before placing them in the jar with the oil and herbs? Thanks for all the great tips and instructions, I really like how you’ve written about the world of tomatoes!
I am going to make the oven sundried tomatoes but I really want to can them for winter use ….. any hints ???
The recipe is good however it takes much longer than 2.5-3.5 hours. I would say a more accurate time is 7.5 hours if using romas.
Watch MIgardener on YouTube titled “Our son was born in the middle of making sun dried tomatoes”. He cans (processes) them in olive oil.
Do you really hollow out Roma tomatoes or just remove the seeds and extra moisture?
A little worried that you say to add herbs when storing tomatoes in oil. A danger of botulism developing is what I have read!
I agree, in fact raw, fresh garlic is a big ‘no no’ in olive oil as well due to botulism.
except that she says to use them in a week… maybe not be so negative.
Good recipe, as a diabetic better than other recipes that insist on either honey or sugar to coat them prior to roasting. Simple yet straight forward, extra advice on freezing methodology welcome, and rehydrate in tomato juice, brilliant.
I think I should have left them in the oven longer. They still have a little moisture in them. But they are so delicious! Is it okay for some moisture to be left in them as long as I am going to vacuum pack and freeze them?
the picture of the sun-dried tomato look so superb can’t wait to try it however I don’t have small Tomatoes I have large ones so I hope it works if you have any ideas letme k n o w
Just made them – DELICIOUS!!!! Thanks for the recipe, Ali
I have just put mine in the oven . . . they look beautiful, a mixture of the orange sun sugars, little pear yellow ones, and red cherry – gorgeous. I may have missed it, but when do I put the fine sea salt on them? Was I supposed to do it now, or when I put them in the olive oil?
I haven’t tasted yet so at this point the pictures are beautiful and the recipe sounds excellent.
I’m saving it to try next summer. If you grow your own tomatoes what type do you use?
I love San Marzanos the best. They make tremendous pizza sauce. They are so flavorful!
I put them in the oven but after 40 mins the bottom got a little burnt. Although I had used the parchment paper.
Super easy – and delicious! I used Roma tomatoes. Only 5, (to first test the recipe). I actually cut 3 of them in thirds instead of halves because they were so big. I used a melon scooper to scoop out the pulp. And I used wax paper instead of parchment paper. 2 sheets to be on the safe side. Took about 5 hours to cook. Watch them at the end! I came close to burning mine – but caught them in the nick of time!!! After, I put them in a container, covered them in EVOO with 2 small bayleaves and half a clove of garlic. Can’t wait to use them in a keto “chicken in cream sauce” recipe!!! I will be making this tomato recipe on a regular basis from now on! Thank you!!!
Great recipe for extra tomatoes laying around. Thank you!
Super tasty and easy to make. I was able to keep them for several months in the fridge and I didn’t have to freeze them because they were submerged in olive oil which prevent them from spoiling I guess.
Lovely recipe can’t beat homemade.
Could I use the dehydrator instead of the oven?
I wish I would have used the dehydrator. I am going on hour 6 at 250 in the oven.
This looks great! After filling with olive oil is it possible to can these in other words seal the jars? If so how would you do that?
Lisa, there are health safety issues with trying to can tomatoes in oil due to the problem of trapped water in the tomatoes. In oil, that can lead to the formation of botulism. There are many unsafe cannig recipes online that do not account for the lower acidity of modern tomato hybrids. I’m so pleased that the above recipe calls for short term refrigeration and not. canning. USDA and many university extension offices post safe canning recipes that have been tested in labs and are proven to be safe. Just because someone has grandma’s recipe that didn’t cause illness, doesn’t mean it can’t. Always play it safe instead of playing Russian Roulette.
The National Center for Home Goid Preservation says, “ Preserving tomatoes in oil is currently not recommended. Oil may protect botulism organisms trapped in a water droplet. Furthermore, oil may have a deleterious effect on lid gaskets and the at least one manufacturer of home canning lids recommends against it.”
You can also grind the dried tomatoes and have a concentrated flavour to use in soups, stews pasta sauces etc.
I’ve been roasting mine in the oven on 225, for 4.5 hours, now. And they’re not ready yet….
Thanks for the recipe! I’m trying this today with some grape tomatoes fresh off my plants. And THANK YOU for mentioning the refrigerator storage of dried tomatoes in oil. Countertop infused oil concoctions are breeding grounds for botulism and I see many unsafe recipe/storage posts online. Thanks for posting a safe recipe. Cheers!
I love the idea of this! I’m going to try ASAP
Thanks for this! I use so many of your recipes; I was glad to find your site as the top option when I searched for oven dried tomatoes. Just a note: the sea salt step is missing from the “recipe” at the bottom of the post!
Okay; I froze a couple freezer bags of oven sun-dried tomatoes as instructed. Thank you!
Now, how can I thaw and use them easily? Any ideas welcome.
Hi. I have been doing this for some time and I love a nice garlicky sundried tomato. Just two question though:
1. Why do you have to scoop the pulp from Roma tomatoes?
2. Shouldn’t one rather peel the tomatoes (the boiling water way)? The skins are unpleasant once they are dry.
How does anyone ever get to the canning and storing stage? We scoff them up as soon as they are done! Tip – if making a big batch do scoop out the seeds to reduce moisture, lower the heat and increase oven time.
A good recipe, but why oh why does everything from America assume we are all still using Stone Age Fahrenheit?
Because if we are in America that is what we use! Get a converter program!
These are so tasty, sweet and tangy! What a great way to use my bumper crop of amish paste tomatoes.
Did not hollow out the Roma tomatoes. Worked fine. I didn’t freeze them on a tray before packing for the freezer bag also. I just put usable amounts in smaller bags and put 5-6 of those in a bigger freezer bag, then just take out what I want. They defrost quickly and I put in a small jar with EVO, garlic and a bay leaf.
Thanks for the recipe.
It worked according to the recipe wonderful
I made them and I’m ready to store them. They are delicious!
The instructions say they keep 4 days in oil in the fridge. Really? Other sources says 6 months in the fridge in oil. Was that to be 4 months? When I buy commercially prepared sundried tomatoes in oil they last few months too. What would be the difference?