Green tomatoes can be substituted for apples in a pie

How to Hide Healthy Veggies in Yummy Green Tomato Pie

A few green tomatoes are a normal thing towards the end of the gardening season. If you just have a few, it’s no big deal. You leave them on the countertop to ripen and when they do, you use them as you would tomatoes that ripened on the vine.

But what about if you have bushels of unripe, green tomatoes?

An Abundance of Green Tomatoes

We were recently gifted with several really large boxes of green tomatoes from a neighbour’s garden. Now, we have a very small kitchen and no pantry. So space for food storage is at a premium, and I couldn’t even begin to think what to do with all that unripe fruit.

I made a bit of an internet search to see what I could make with unripe, green tomatoes. Of course, I found a ton of recipes for green tomato pickles and relishes. I also saw suggestions for adding green tomatoes to soups, spaghetti sauces, and chili. I already knew that green tomatoes make a suitable substitute for zucchini, carrots or bananas in a spice cake or muffin recipe. And of course, there’s the classic fried green tomato! I even found recipes for green tomato jams, jellies, and marmalade.

Green Tomatoes in Pie

The one recipe I had never thought of making was a green tomato pie. No, this is not a savoury pie. It’s a sweet one. Apparently, you can use green tomatoes with or instead of apples in pies and tarts. There are literally dozens of recipes on the internet for green tomato pie or another variation, green tomato and apple pie. The green tomato pie recipe I read says you can’t tell the difference. It’s hard to believe! Would you make one of these pies for your family?

Green Tomato Nutrition

Nutritionally speaking, green tomatoes are similar to their ripe, red counterparts. They have a lot of the same nutrients as ripe red tomatoes, though in slightly different proportions. Green tomatoes have a few more calories than red tomatoes; they’re also a bit higher in sodium and sugars.

One medium green tomato provides 15% of your daily requirement of vitamins A and K, along with 5% of vitamin B6, folate and dietary fibre. As for its mineral content, a medium green tomato has 3% of your daily iron and magnesium, as well as 1% of iron.

Green tomatoes are especially rich in vitamin C, with just one medium tomato providing a whopping 48% of your daily requirement. Green, unripe tomatoes offer many of the same nutrients as dark green vegetables, and in similar quantities. So do consider them if you’re looking for a change from leafy green vegetables like kale or Swiss chard.

Green Tomato vs. Apple

What’s interesting is that cup for cup, green tomatoes have fewer than half the calories of apples – 22 calories for one cup of sliced green tomatoes, compared with 57 calories for the same amount of apple slices. Apples also contain lower levels of vitamins and minerals than green tomatoes. The tomatoes, for their part, offer higher amounts of protein and less than half the carbs compared to apples.

My Adventures with Green Tomato Recipes

Our little valley is bear country, so this time of year it’s really important for people to pick their fruit and glean their gardens. That often means that even small home gardeners have too much fresh produce when summer comes to a close.

A few days ago, a neighbour sent my husband home with three big boxes of tomatoes. Most of them were green. So far we’ve made stuffed tomatoes, sandwiches, and school snacks from the ripe ones. And we’ve made a beautiful green and red tomato soup that I will most definitely make again. I have more tomatoes cut up for a different tomato soup recipe that uses just the green tomatoes.

This weekend, I am hoping to attempt a zucchini brownie recipe with green tomatoes substituted for the shredded zucchini. I also found several different green tomato cake recipes I want to try. One reminded me a little of a war cake, but with the green tomatoes providing the moisture instead of the raisins.

Another recipe that caught my eye was an interesting savoury green tomato cobbler that uses cheddar biscuits for the topping. So, you can see I have a lot of stuff I want to make with our lovely green tomatoes! And luckily we have more than enough tomatoes for our household and several others!

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Green tomatoes baked into a pie make for a healthy alternative to apple pie – and they’ll never taste the difference! | 24 Carrot Diet | healthy desserts | pie | apples
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8 thoughts on “How to Hide Healthy Veggies in Yummy Green Tomato Pie”

  1. I love green tomatoes but never switched them for apples. I make a yummy friend green tomato casserole. I created years ago made with salsa, cheese and baked. It is how I used up left overs of fried green tomatoes. It was a big hit with the family.

    1. I don’t make or eat a lot of pickles. But when I get a craving for them, I do love my pickles! I’m planning to put up some pickled green tomatoes and watermelon rind this weekend. If I have time, I think I might also do some carrots, onions, and cauliflower while I’m at it.

  2. Actually we both are working. My wife hardly has enough time to make something extra ordinary. But she cooks simple veggies. As we both like only veggies. But we eat beans once in a week. When my wife has few holidays, then she tries new dishes .

    1. I don’t know how common it is to use a deep freeze there, @saminac, but many of us here rely on them to preserve foods that are made ahead. One thing that I like to do is to package meals that can be cooked in a crockpot. We make two or more of each meal when we first prepare it, and then when we need a quick meal we can defrost one package at a time.

      We put the meal into a crockpot where it can cook all day when we are attending to other things. Or we make casseroles like lasagna, shepherd’s pie, and meatloaf that can be thawed for a day in the fridge and then reheated in an hour.

      I do similar things with ingredients for casseroles, soups and stews. And even desserts! You already know that I freeze cookie dough. I also bake extra muffins and freeze them. We love egg dishes here, so I prepare enough chopped vegetables and meat, and shredded cheese, for quick omelettes or breakfast burritos when we want an easy breakfast.

      There are a great many time saving tricks! Once my first two blogs are well established, I think perhaps I will start another for freezer meals and other kitchen hacks.

    2. When I am as busy as you two are I have bean day when I have a day off, I simply cook several kinds of beans and freeze them into meal size portions. So easy to come home and have dinner ready! I like vegetables better than meat.

      1. I discovered that I cook precook beans and freeze them, only just this year @andriaperry.

        Most folks I know just buy them canned, but I’ve always preferred to buy dried beans for a number of reasons. Now that I know I can cook them up in advance and freeze them, I try to make big batches for making my soups and my chili. I haven’t really done it much over the summer, but now with the cold weather upon us I will start doing it again soon.

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