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Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney

Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney
    • Prep time:
    • Cooking time:
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  • Serves: 4-6 jars

A Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney recipe, that's mildly spicy with a sweet tang! Perfect for using on grilled cheese, burgers, or with salads.


  • 1 tbsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 2kg tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1kg red onions, skinned & sliced
  • 10-16 red chillies, deseeded & chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, skinned & finely chopped
  • 40g root ginger, peeled & grated
  • 350g brown sugar
  • 300ml red wine vinegar
  • 4 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 3-4 tsp salt
  • 1-3 tsp chilli flakes (optional)


  • 4-6 medium jars
  • A handheld stick blender


A Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney recipe, that’s mildly spicy with a sweet tang!

If, like me you grow your own chillies and tomatoes, this is a great recipe for using them up in bulk. The smoky flavour comes from a generous amount of smoked paprika.

A pile of tomatoes, red onions, garlic, root ginger and chillies. Some of the various pieces of veg needed to make this Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney recipe

Stage 1

Before starting this Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney recipe, you should sterilise your jars by putting them in the oven. I find putting them in for around 15 minutes at 100°C works well.

Stage 2

Heat the mustard and coriander seeds in a dry frying pan, stirring over a low heat until they start to pop. Remove from the pan and lightly crush in a pestle and mortar or with a rolling pin, then set to one side.

Lots of chopped red chillies

Stage 3

Tip the prepped tomatoes, onions, chillies, garlic and root ginger into a large saucepan. Stir together, and then also add the sugar, vinegar, smoked paprika, the crushed mustard and coriander seeds, salt and some chilli flakes (optional). Stir again to mix everything together.

All of the prepped vegetables in a large metal saucepan

Stage 4

Put a lid on the saucepan while bringing the mixture to the boil. Once it’s boiling, remove the lid, turn down the heat and simmer gently until the vegetables are soft (approx 1 hour).

A before & after shot of the Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney. Before it is all lumpy and after being blended it is nice and smooth.
The mixture is reduced to a chunky puree using a handheld stick blender.

Stage 5

Take the pan off the heat and leave to cool for a few minutes. Then, use a handheld stick blender to reduce the mixture to a chunky puree. Give the mixture a taste, and add more chilli flakes, salt or smoked paprika to suit. Don’t go overboard with the chilli flakes unless you like things really spicy.

Stage 6

Bring the mixture back to a boil and continue to gently cook, uncovered and stirring regularly (careful: it might splutter during the reheating phase!), until there’s no loose liquid when a wooden spoon is drawn across the bottom of the pot (approx 1 hour). Taste again, and if needed, feel free to add more chilli flakes or smoked paprika.

A wooden spoon being pulled across the bottom of the metal saucepan
Make sure that no loose liquid runs into the gap made when you pull a wooden spoon across the bottom of the saucepan

Stage 7

Spoon the chutney into the clean, warm jars. Then screw on the lids and leave to cool.
When completely cold, test that you have an airtight seal by pressing the centre of the lids – If it is already down or stays down then you do have an airtight seal.

A jam funnel is sitting on a jar being filled with the Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney
Using a jam funnel to help put the Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney into the prepped jars

Stage 8

Label and leave this smoky tomato chilli chutney to mature for around about 6 weeks. It should keep for over a year if stored in a dark, cool, dry place.

Some cheese crackers with the Smoky Tomato Chilli Chutney generously spread over the top

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If, when the jars of this smoky tomato chilli chutney are completely cold, the lids pop back up when pressed in the middle, this means you do not have an airtight seal. You will either need to take the chutney out of the jars and reboil it, or just make sure to keep it stored in the fridge and to use it all up within a few weeks.