Tomatoes are a staple in almost every garden, but when choosing what tomatoes to grow can be a big decision. Today we’ll chat on roma tomatoes vs. regular tomatoes to help you decide which you’d like to plant!
Roma tomatoes are a meaty, virtually seedless, oval shaped tomato. While regular tomatoes are a larger round tomato with a slightly higher water content. While they may be substituted for each other in recipes, it will depend on what you’re making on how successful the substitution will be.
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Looking to grow your own tomatoes – here is a nice variety of tomato seeds also on Amazon.
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What are Roma Tomatoes?
Roma tomatoes are also known as plum tomatoes or Italian plum tomatoes. Roma’s are meaty tomatoes often used to make tomato paste or tomato sauce. They have an egg like shape and typically weigh around 2oz per tomato. They have a lower water content compared to other types of tomatoes which is why they have the thicker meatier texture. This lower water content is why they are better for sauces and paste, as there is less water to reduce from the recipe. These also make a beautiful salsa. Roma tomatoes are our favorites!
Despite them having a name that is often associated with Italy, according to federallabs.org these tomatoes were actually developed by the USDA back in 1955. A lot of tomatoes we eat today are hybrids, made to resist disease, ship better and to taste better. Roma tomatoes are no exception.
Recipe Ideas for Roma Tomatoes:
- We love making tomato sauce with our Roma, you can see how we do that here.
- We also enjoy making salsa using Roma tomatoes
- This roasted tomato soup recipe is definitely on my to-make list
What are Regular Tomatoes?
Generally speaking, when someone is thinking of a “regular” tomato, they are thinking about a globe tomato. These globe tomatoes are your standard grocery store tomato. They are versatile and can be cooked or eaten in salads or sandwiches. These tomatoes are popular because they ship well and are versatile, making them perfect for shipping to grocery stores and for the average consumer.
Recipe Ideas for Globe Tomatoes:
- Tomato jam – yum. I haven’t made this one yet, but we’ve made lots of jams. Adding this to my to make list!
- Watermelon, tomato, feta salad? This one looks good, but I don’t think my husband would go for it!
Can you use Regular Globe Tomatoes instead of Roma Tomatoes?
Generally speaking, you can substitute different kinds of tomatoes in a pinch. But it will depend on your recipe how successful the substitution will be. As you read above, roma tomatoes are more meaty and globe tomatoes are bigger and have a less meaty texture. I’d say, for most things you’d be fine to substitute. But if you’re making tomato sauce or paste, especially in large batches, you probably would want to stick to the roma!
Tips for Growing Tomatoes
- Sunshine – Tomatoes require sunlight, so make sure you’re planning to plant them where they can get sunlight. You’ll want to check the package of the seed or plant you purchased, but most I’ve seen recommend at least seven hours of direct sunlight
- Fertilized Soil – Adding a compost or fertilizer to your soil will help support growing high yielding tomato plants. Different types of tomatoes will succeed in different levels of PH. You may want to consider buying a soil tester to properly treat the soil (if needed) to get it to the ideal PH.
- Water – Like every other plant, tomatoes require water. Tomatoes require about 1 inch of water per week, depending on the type. Make sure your tomatoes are getting the water needed to thrive.
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