Gardening

Common Types of Tomatoes And Their Names

Source : pimiso

Tomatoes, those yummy fruits we all love, come in more than 10,000 varieties with different colors and tastes. Whether you like them sweet and juicy or tangy and robust, there's a tomato for everyone. Even though they look and taste different, all tomatoes are part of the nightshade family.

This guide will help you understand the common types of tomatoes you might find in a garden or store. So, continue reading the article to learn about these delicious fruits and see how to enjoy them best in our everyday cooking.

Cherry Tomatoes

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You can enjoy tasty cherry tomatoes all year round, unlike most tomatoes that are best in the summer. These small tomatoes are perfect for snacking, eat them whole, halved, or put them on skewers.

So, whether you want a quick snack or a delicious side for your meals, these flavorful cherry tomatoes are a great choice anytime, adding a burst of taste to your plate.

  • Characteristics: Bite-sized, round or oblong, thin skin, juicy flesh, come in various colors.
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, bursting with flavor
  • Uses: Snacking, salads, skewers, salsa, garnish

Grape Tomatoes

Source : instagram

Grape tomatoes, named for their oblong, grape-like shape, are bite-sized delights found in grocery stores. Smaller than cherry tomatoes, they boast a dense, meaty texture.

Their convenient size makes them an ideal choice for on-the-go munching, while their robust texture adds substance to dishes. Whether you're looking for a tasty snack or a quick addition to your meal, grape tomatoes bring a delightful combination of sweetness and freshness to your plate.

  • Characteristics: Even smaller than cherry tomatoes, oblong shape, firm flesh, comes in various colors
  • Flavor: Sweeter than cherry tomatoes, less juicy
  • Uses: Salads, pasta dishes, skewers, snacking

Beefsteak Tomatoes

Source : instagram

Beefsteak tomatoes are big, round, and super juicy, just right for stacking on sandwiches or burgers. These medium to extra-large tomatoes are the go-to for a delicious topping.

Best savored in the summer when they're at their tastiest, these tomatoes shine in recipes like Caprese salad or get fancy with Caprese French bread pizzas. Their fresh, robust flavor makes them perfect for enjoying raw.

  • Characteristics: Large, meaty, juicy flesh, thick skin, come in various shapes.
  • Flavor: Bold, savory, slightly sweet
  • Uses: Slicing for sandwiches and burgers, salads, gazpacho

Roma Tomatoes

Source : instagram

Roma tomatoes, also known as plum tomatoes, are not as small as cherry or grape tomatoes but not big enough to slice for sandwiches. Shaped like ovals and measuring about 3 to 4 inches in length, they're around 1 to 2 inches wide.

Unlike sweeter varieties, Romas are famous for their slightly tangy taste and grainy inside with a firm outer layer. While they may not be the best for snacking, these tomatoes excel in cooking.

  • Characteristics: Oval-shaped with fewer seeds and thicker flesh.
  • Flavor: Mild and less juicy.
  • Uses: Ideal for sauces, pastes, and canning.

Globe Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Imagine the typical tomato you see in grocery stores; that's a globe tomato. It's a medium-sized, round tomato with a sturdy, thick skin, making it robust and durable. These tomatoes have a mild flavor, making them great for various uses.

Thanks to their versatility, globe tomatoes are like the reliable all-rounder of the tomato world, ready to add a tasty touch to your meals, whether it's a simple sandwich or a savory sauce for your favorite dishes.

  • Characteristics: Medium-sized, round, smooth skin, thick flesh, comes in various colors.
  • Flavor: Mild, slightly sweet, good balance of acidity and sweetness
  • Uses: Slicing for salads and sandwiches, gazpacho, salsa

Heirloom Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Heirloom tomatoes are like the rockstars of the tomato world. What makes them extra special is their age; they've been around for like 50 to 100 years. These tomatoes are like summer exclusives, showing up only when tomatoes are at their best.

They're grown the old-fashioned way, with no human tinkering, just natural pollination. Now, they might be a bit fancier and delicate compared to the regular tomatoes you find in stores, but people love them for their awesome taste.

  • Characteristics: Open-pollinated varieties, come in unique shapes, sizes, and colors, and often have thin skin and delicate flesh
  • Flavor: Diverse range of flavors, from sweet and fruity to earthy and tart
  • Uses: Slicing for salads and sandwiches, enjoying the unique flavor profile

Cocktail Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Picture cocktail tomatoes as bigger siblings to cherry tomatoes. They're like the slightly larger, equally tasty version of those little guys. If you know Campari tomatoes, they're like the rockstars of the cocktail tomato world; sweet and ready to roll.

No need for complicated cooking; just chop them in half for a salad. But here's the cool part, they handle heat like champs. Throw them in the oven with some parmesan and herbs, or sneak them into your fancier sauces.

  • Characteristics: Slightly larger than cherry tomatoes, round or oblong shape, thin skin, juicy flesh, come in various colors
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, bursting with flavor
  • Uses: Salads, appetizers, snacking, garnish

Currant Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Currant tomatoes are like tiny flavor bombs that originally hailed from South America but have now spread their tomato magic worldwide, from North America to Europe. Imagine these little wonders in shades of red, yellow, or even cool purpleish-black.

They're like mini-marvels, usually less than half an inch in size. But don't let their small stature fool you, they bring a sweet and tangy punch to the party.

  • Characteristics: Tiny, teardrop-shaped, thin skin, juicy flesh, comes in various colors.
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, intense flavor
  • Uses: Garnish, salads, salsa, jams

Black Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Black cherry tomatoes likely originated in Central and South America and are now grown in warm places. Despite being called Black, they're actually a deep purplish-red or mahogany color.

These small, round tomatoes are about the size of cherries, perfect for snacking. They have a tasty and rich flavor, sweet with a hint of smokiness. Their unique color and size make them great for veggie trays or mixed into salads for a colorful boost.

  • Characteristics: Come in various shapes and sizes, smooth skin, meaty flesh
  • Flavor: Mild, sweet, citrusy
  • Uses: Slicing for salads and sandwiches, salsas, gazpacho

Yellow Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Yellow tomatoes, originally from Peru, are small and have a classic round shape like regular tomatoes. They look a bit like peaches because, as they ripen, their bright yellow color blushes to pink, and they even have fuzzy skin.

These tomatoes, sometimes called peach tomatoes, are loved for their sweet and mild taste with a touch of tartness. People usually enjoy them fresh, either by themselves or in salads. So, if you're looking for a tasty and unique twist on traditional tomatoes, these little yellow ones might be a delicious choice.

  • Characteristics: Yellow or golden in color
  • Flavor: Mild and sweet
  • Uses: Salads, salsas, sauces

Japanese Black Trifele Tomato

Source : facebook

The Japanese Black Trifele Tomato, also known as Black Truffle or Trifele Black originated in Russia in 1999 and has become popular worldwide. With a distinctive mahogany color and a pear shape, it's a medium-sized tomato, about 2-3 inches in diameter.

This unique tomato is great for fresh salads, adding a pop of color, or as a dark-hued addition to charcuterie boards. It's also perfect for making flavorful tomato sauces.

  • Characteristics: Small, round, black skin with green stripes, sweet and tangy flavor
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, with a slightly smoky flavor
  • Uses: Salads, appetizers, garnish

Green Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Green tomatoes are basically unripe tomatoes, picked before they turn red. They have a crispy texture and a vibrant green color. Unlike ripe tomatoes, they stay firm when cooked, which makes them perfect for pickling.

A classic Southern dish called Fried Green Tomatoes is also made with these unripe gems. So, even before tomatoes turn red and sweet, these green ones offer a unique and tasty twist, adding a crispy and tangy flavor to your meals.

  • Characteristics: Unripe tomatoes, come in various shapes and sizes, firm flesh, tart flavor
  • Flavor: Tart, tangy, sometimes bitter
  • Uses: Fried green tomatoes, pickles, chutneys

Pear Tomatoes

Source : facebook

Pear tomatoes get their name from their oblong shape and are small, tasty treats similar to cherry and grape tomatoes. They share the same sweet, tangy, and juicy flavor profile.

These little delights come in various colors, including red, orange, or yellow. With their petite size and delicious taste, pear tomatoes add a delightful touch to your meals, making them a versatile and enjoyable option for fresh and vibrant dishes.

  • Characteristics: Elongated shape, smooth skin, meaty flesh, sweet and tangy flavor
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, with a hint of fruitiness
  • Uses: Salads, appetizers, snacking, garnish

Tigerella Tomato

Source : facebook

Tigerella tomatoes, which originated from the UK, are a hit among home gardeners globally. Sporting a unique striped look, they're medium-sized, similar to regular round tomatoes.

These tomatoes bring a tasty balance of tangy and sweet flavors, making them a favorite for many. The distinct stripes make them stand out, adding a fun touch to your garden and meals. Whether you're a seasoned gardener or just starting, Tigerella tomatoes are a great choice for a flavorful and eye-catching addition.

  • Characteristics: Striped appearance in various colors, thin skin, juicy flesh
  • Flavor: Complex, sweet, tangy, sometimes with hints of spice
  • Uses: Salads, salsas, gazpacho

Brandywine Tomatoes

Source : idiggreenacres

The Brandywine tomato started in the 1800s in Pennsylvania. These big tomatoes, like beefsteak ones, aren't perfect shapes. You can find them in pink, red, or even yellow.

The red and pink ones often stay a bit green near the stem even when they're ready. They're perfect for slicing and putting in sandwiches. So, if you want a tasty and giant tomato for your meals, Brandywine is the way to go - a delicious slice of history right from your garden.

  • Characteristics: Heirloom variety, large size, heart-shaped, meaty flesh, thin skin
  • Flavor: Rich, complex, sweet, slightly tart
  • Uses: Slicing, sandwiches, eating fresh.

San Marzano Tomatoes

Source : facebook

San Marzano tomatoes are special tomatoes with a plum-like shape, known for their sweet taste and smooth texture. People really like them for making sauces and paste because of their unique flavor.

These tomatoes are like the VIPs of the tomato world, cherished for their exceptional qualities. So, if you're planning to cook up a fantastic pasta dish or make a tasty sauce, San Marzano tomatoes are the way to go.

  • Characteristics: Heirloom variety, plum-shaped, smooth skin, meaty flesh, few seeds
  • Flavor: Sweet, intense, concentrated flavor
  • Uses: Sauces, paste, stews, canning

Early Girl Tomatoes

Source : homefortheharvest

Early Girl tomatoes are a special kind of tomato that grows quickly and tastes mild. They're like the early birds of the tomato world, ripening ahead of the others. These tomatoes are a hybrid variety, meaning they come from a mix of different tomato types, and they're famous for getting ripe early in the season.

These tomatoes bring a tasty and timely addition to your meals, making them a popular choice for those who can't wait for delicious tomatoes.

  • Characteristics: Hybrid variety, medium-sized, round, smooth skin, firm flesh
  • Flavor: Mild, sweet, slightly tart
  • Uses: Slicing for salads and sandwiches, gazpacho, salsa

Roma VF Tomatoes

Source : gardenalchemyseeds

Roma VF tomatoes are a special kind of Roma tomato that's resistant to diseases. These tomatoes are like the superheroes of the garden because they can fight off diseases that might harm other tomatoes.

With the added disease resistance in Roma VF, you can count on healthy and robust plants. So, if you're dreaming of cooking up a delicious pasta sauce or making your own flavorful paste, Roma VF tomatoes are the champions to have in your garden.

  • Characteristics: Plum-shaped, smooth skin, meaty flesh, few seeds
  • Flavor: Similar to Roma tomatoes, sweet, tangy, concentrated flavor
  • Uses: Sauces, paste, stews, canning

Tomatoes On The Vine

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Tomatoes on the Vine are exactly what they sound like; they stay attached to the plant until they soak up all the goodness and become fully ripe. These red vine tomatoes are bursting with sweet and juicy freshness, making them a must-have in any tomato lover's kitchen.

By letting them ripen on the vine, these tomatoes absorb all the plant's nutrients, resulting in a delicious and flavorful treat. 

  • Characteristics: Tomatoes left attached to the vine when harvested, are believed to retain more flavor and freshness
  • Flavor: Varies depending on the tomato variety
  • Uses: Similar to the specific variety they are

Oxheart Tomatoes

Source : seeds-organic

Oxheart tomatoes get their name because they look like big strawberries or hearts. These tomatoes are kind of like beefsteak tomatoes, known for being big, tasty, and thick-skinned.

But the twist is, that Oxhearts are rounder like the regular globe tomatoes, not all lumpy like beefsteaks. Still, they have a pointy end that makes them heart-shaped.

  • Characteristics: Heirloom variety, heart-shaped, meaty flesh, few seeds, thick skin
  • Flavor: Rich, complex, sweet, slightly tart
  • Uses: Slicing for sandwiches and burgers, salads, gazpacho

Black Krim Tomato

Source : therosetable

The Black Krim tomato likely comes from Ukraine or Russia, and its name nods to the Crimean Peninsula. Best in cooler climates, this medium-sized tomato has a deep purplish-black color that gets richer as it ripens.

Known for its smoky, sweet, and slightly tangy flavor, it's a unique addition to salads, sandwiches, or even just on its own. While available in the USA, you might need to check a well-stocked international market to find them.

  • Characteristics: Heirloom variety, dark purple to black skin, meaty flesh, sweet and tangy flavor
  • Flavor: Sweet, tangy, with earthy and smoky notes
  • Uses: Slicing for salads and sandwiches, sauces, gazpacho

Celebrity Tomato

Source : bonnieplants

Celebrity tomatoes are hybrids made to grow well in different places. Hybrids are like the superheroes of tomatoes, designed for great taste, toughness, or lots of fruit.

These medium-sized tomatoes are bright red and have a mild, slightly sweet flavor that's just right. Their vibrant red color even makes them stand out on tacos or as a pizza topping. So, if you want a tomato that's an all-around star, Celebrity tomatoes are ready to shine in your kitchen.

  • Characteristics: Hybrid variety, large, round, smooth skin, firm flesh
  • Flavor: Mild, sweet, slightly tart
  • Uses: Slicing for sandwiches and burgers, salads, gazpacho