Why Are Canned Tomatoes Red but Fresh Tomatoes Pink?

Discover the science behind the color difference of canned and fresh tomatoes.

Have you ever wondered why canned tomatoes appear red while fresh tomatoes from the produce section look pink? The answer may surprise you.


  • Canned tomatoes are cooked during the canning process, intensifying their red color.
  • Canned tomatoes are graded for color, resulting in a more vibrant red hue.
  • The ripeness of tomatoes and the presence of air bubbles can affect their color after blending.
  • Fresh tomatoes are often picked green and artificially ripened, impacting their flavor and color.
  • Top-Personality1216

    I think it also has to do with the canned ones being cooked. As they cook, they get more red. Since canning cooks the tomatoes, they get redder because of the cooking as well.


    Canned tomatoes are graded according to color, and the tomatoes meeting the grading requirements are much more red due to higher lycopene content.


    Along with the cooking process, air bubbles and ripeness can affect the color of blended tomatoes. Letting the mixture settle makes the color deepen.


    Fresh tomatoes are often artificially ripened and lack the flavor of fully ripe tomatoes. Buying fresh tomatoes when in season is recommended for optimal taste.