En person håller en klase mogna San Marzano-tomater i sina händer, varsamt lyfta från en tomatplanta i en trädgård.

San Marzano - The tomatoes that go with the pizza

One of the most important components of a pizza is undoubtedly the tomato sauce. Making a good tomato sauce is not only about the recipe, but also about the ingredients.

Looking at Naples, there is a clearly named king when it comes to tomatoes - the San Marzano tomato. With it, you can make awesome tomato sauces, in a very simple way.

In this San Marzano guide you will find out everything you need to know about these amazing tomatoes.

San Marzano Tomatoes for Beginners

San Marzano tomatoes are a variety of plum tomatoes that in Naples are often known as the best - the so-called 'king of tomatoes'. However, this does not mean that only San Marzano is used, as they are both expensive and, according to Neapolitans, not suitable for everything.

Like many other peeled plum tomatoes - pomodori pelati - San Marzano tomatoes are excellent for preserving and then using in sauces and stews.

The difference to many other similar tomatoes is that the San Marzano tomatoes are even more flavorful and often have a sharper taste. Many people think that San Marzano is the tastiest variety, but it is up to you to decide for yourself.

Different San Marzano tomatoes vary in taste, of course, but generally speaking you get a very tasty and sweet tomato with a nice acidity, which is also of the meatier kind.

Why use San Marzano tomatoes?

Besides the fact that San Marzano is one of the tastiest types of tomatoes, there is another reason to choose them as a Swede: more consistent quality. Unlike many other tomato varieties, San Marzano tomatoes are protected by the designation of origin DOP, which states that tomatoes may not be marketed as San Marzano unless they are from the Agro-Sarnese-Nocerino area.

Then there are also rules for how the tomatoes should be grown, harvested and preserved, which means that you can't cheat as easily. In addition, there are no strange additives, acidity regulators, or dyes. All in all, this leads to San Marzano tomatoes maintaining a very consistent and high quality.

San Marzano tomatoes on pizza

San Marzano tomatoes are ideal for the pizza's tomato sauce. This is the case as the tomatoes are produced to suit Neapolitan pizza. If it says San Marzano on the can, it means that the tomatoes - at least most of the time - will be sweet, quite fleshy, very flavorful and have a nice acidity. Plus, they have the perfect texture for pizza.

Can you use San Marzano tomatoes for something else?

Canned San Marzano tomatoes are versatile and can be used for a lot more than pizza. They are suitable for many pasta sauces, tomato soups, stews and more. The tasty tomatoes have a meaty texture, which makes them more tangible than many other tomatoes. They can also be used in salsas and for bruschetta, risotto and gratins.

Little Napoli's San Marzano tomatoes

At Lilla Napoli we offer three different San Marzano tomatoes. All of these are of very high quality and you can make a fantastic tomato sauce with all of them. But having said that, there are some small differences that you can read about here, but we also encourage you to try it out to find the one you like the most.


Each harvest, we select the best picking date and the best field at the reputable Gustarosso, and that's where we get our tomatoes from. In Gustarosso's San Marzano tomatoes, you get quality through and through, and we are very proud to have a good collaboration with them.

On each can you can see the batch number and our logo, so you know that the tomatoes are selected by us personally. The tomatoes themselves have good ripeness, good sweetness and retained acidity. In terms of consistency, they are also very good, and it's always nice to support a farmer's cooperative like Gustarosso.


Terramagna's San Marzano tomatoes are extremely sought after and hard to come by. Previously, we only received very large cans, but now we also offer the 400-gram version. Although we have a lot of love for Gustarosso, we have to say that Terramagna's San Marzano tomatoes are one of the very best we've tried, which is why we use both on our pizzas at the restaurant.

If you want to talk about differences, the biggest one we found between Gustarosso and Terramagna's current harvest is that Terramagna has a slightly runnier juice. In addition to that, you get deep flavor, rich sweetness, good acidity, beautiful color and the right texture in Terramagnan.

Our recipe for San Marzano tomato sauce for the pizza

If you want to know how to make a Neapolitan tomato sauce, you can read our own recipe from our book here. Spoiler alert: it's very simple.

Our tomato sauce contains only tomatoes and salt. This is the case when we want the goodness of the tomatoes to speak for itself, and then you don't have to use anything else. NOTE: for this recipe to work, you need good tomatoes :)


  • San Marzano tomatoes
  • Salt

How one do:

  • Pour the entire contents of the tomato can into a bowl.
  • Mash the tomatoes with your hands until there are no whole tomatoes left. You don't have to be super careful, but it's actually nice when you can tell the difference between the tomato flesh and the tomato juice (we think). At the same time as you mash, you clean out all the green and white hard parts.
  • After mashing, add salt according to the following formula: Weight of the tomatoes x 0.008. So if you have a 400 gram can of tomatoes, add 3 grams of salt. When you taste the sauce, it should taste a little salty, otherwise you can add more.
  • And there you were done! As simple as that. Remember not to store the sauce for more than 24 hours as it does not retain its flavor as well after that.

Craving yet?

If you've been tempted to test what really good tomatoes do for your pizza, you're welcome to try one of ours: Gustarossos or Terramagnas . Both are really good, so we encourage you to try both to see which one you like best :)

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