Mandarin Sauce

The secret ingredient in this recipe is tomatoes (although posting it on the Internet probably cancels the secret part).  I say secret because I have somehow failed to mention to my children that this is a tomato based recipe.  They haven't figured it out and still eat it (this may have something to do with the amount of sugar ;-).

I got this recipe years ago while visiting a college roommate.  It was during a "what do you do with your tomatoes" discussion and she handed me a jar of this sauce and the recipe.  I have been canning it ever since.  This is a fairly large recipe but you could reduce the amounts and make it fresh. 

A few years ago I had a friend ask me if I had any ideas for canning tomatoes when she had already done stewed tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, and salsa.  I gave her this recipe.  Apparently she passed on the recipe to other neighbors and it spread like a wildfire!  I had at least 5 people ask me if I had tried the yummy Mandarin Sauce recipe! 

Mandarin Sauce
8 cups tomatoes
4 cups onions
4 cups green peppers
2 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks (do not drain)
6 cups sugar
8 Tb. soy sauce
3 cups vinegar
1 cup water
1½ cups ultra gel (or cornstarch)
Peel tomatoes and remove stems. Coarsely chop tomatoes, onion, and green pepper. Add all ingredients (except ultra gel) to a sauce pan and bring to boil. Gradually add ultra gel, stirring constantly until thickened (if using corn starch, reserve some of the pineapple juice and mix corn starch and juice first). Bottle, using recent guidelines from your university extension to avoid safety hazards when canning. Only use cornstarch if you are making a small batch to consume immediately. Use the ultra gel if you are bottling the Mandarin Sauce. Yield 24 cups.

There are many serving suggestions: Serve as a sauce over chicken and rice.  Cook the chicken in the crockpot in the sauce.  Use for a dip for orange chicken.  Use in place of any sweet and sour sauce. You can chop the vegetables into your preferred size, 1" squares, smaller, or even pureed if your family doesn't eat "chunky" food.


  1. how many jars does that recipe make?

  2. This is a huge recipe and easily makes 12 pints (6 quarts) of sauce. I like the pint size- it is the perfect amount for my family.


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