15 Tasty Ways to Enjoy Tomato Juice
While many of us simply keep it in the pantry or fridge to enjoy with breakfast or lunch, the truth is that tomato juice can be used in a wide variety of ways, from familiar cocktails and beverages to budget-wise soup bases and sauces. Here are 15 of my favorite creative ways to make the most of a can or bottle of tomato juice. (See also: Great Grocery Savings Strategies)
1. Spicy Bloody Mary
Classics become classics for a reason, and the Bloody Mary cocktail is no exception. For those of us who like to spice it up a bit, this Sriracha bloody Mary delivers in spades. If you like a bit more zip to your breakfast juice, you might want to try your hand at preparing this Virgin Mary, which leaves out the alcohol.
2. Red Eye
For those who prefer beer as an ingredient in their game day or summer cocktails, using tomato juice to create a red eye could prove interesting. Consider it for an afternoon barbecue or sports brunch.
A fun thing to serve at warm-weather celebrations is granita. Many people are familiar sweet granitas, but the truth is you can just as easily keep it savory by including herbs and vegetables in your recipes. This tomato and basil granita from Shape Magazine demonstrates that point precisely.
4. On Its Own
Hey, simple gets the job done. So if you are looking for easy lunch ideas, try pairing a basic tomato juice with your favorite pre-made sushi roll or pack of crackers and an apple. It’s not fancy, but it will up the nutrition factor of your lunch with virtually no extra effort.
5. Off-the-Vine Smoothie
There’s no rule that you always need to enjoy canned tomato juice on its own, especially if you have a blender at home. This tomato smoothie incorporates both fresh and prepared tomatoes, but you can certainly explore fully fresh options.
6. Soup Base for a Veggie and Bean Soup
One easy soup that I like to make throughout the year is a tomato juice broth base with frozen mixed vegetables, seasonings, and easy-to-cook beans such as black beans or black-eyed peas. It takes less than five minutes to mix up, and it's one of my household's favorite vegetarian crock pot recipes due to its affordability and flavor.
7. Stock for Cabbage and Collard Rolls
8. Sauce Base for Beans and Lentils
9. Simple, Plain Tomato Soup
10. Tomato Juice Cake
Seriously, who knew? Apparently, tomato juice cake is a moist tea-time treat. Worth trying with decaf coffee for an afternoon snack.
11. Tenderize a Pot Roast
Tomato juice is a great ingredient for slow-cooking pot roast in, and it provides a nice flavor for any homemade gravy you want to make with the extra liquid. If you make extra, there are other ways to enjoy leftover roast throughout the week, saving you time, energy, and money.
Who doesn’t love a nice hot pot of chili on a cold day? This knock-off version of Wendy's chili is a great place to start, and it can be made with tomato juice as part of the base. I use my bulk corn bread mix to whip up small batches of fresh muffins whenever I prepare this hearty favorite for dinner.
13. Healthy Salad Dressing
While many people concentrate on the salad add-ins as a way to dress up a healthy meal, the truth is there’s a great deal that can be done with salad dressings. This tomato juice dressing from Healthy Alberta is one such example.
14. Mexican Rice
If you enjoy meals with a south-of-the-border flair and want to dress up one of your beans and rice recipes, consider preparing Mexican rice with tomato juice for extra flavor and color. It will add a bit of pizzazz to your plate, which is a great help when you’re having company or trying to add some fun for the kids.
15. Vegan Caesar Cocktail
If you’re having people over and want to serve a stylish breakfast-for-dinner menu, try adding a vegan Caesar cocktail to your list of offerings. It will make the event special, dress things up a bit, and add even more festivity to an unusual dinner party idea.
If you have a few cans of tomato juice kicking around in your pantry and don’t know what to do with them, consider trying out a few of these ideas in order to use them up.