Best Brand: Mediterranean Organic Sun-Dried Tomatoes
mediterranean organic sun-dried tomatoes

Best Brand: Mediterranean Organic Sun-Dried Tomatoes

by Kelley Herring on February 8, 2014

Sun-dried tomatoes add bold, smoky flavor to a wide variety of foods – from pizzas and pastas… to salads, soups, sauces and dressings.

And while this flavor-packed ingredient may seem a bit pricey (up to $20/lb), it doesn’t take many to give your favorite dishes more depth and gourmet flavor.

But as is the case with most foods… all sun-dried tomatoes are not created equal.

Sun-Dried Tomatoes… with a Side of Preservatives and Pesticide

In fact, most store-bought sun-dried tomatoes are preserved with sulfites.

Sulfites prevent bacterial growth and also help sun-dried tomatoes keep their red hue by absorbing oxygen.


Tomatoes are on the “Dirty Dozen” – one of the top crops sprayed heavily with harmful pesticides. Always choose organic.

And while the FDA considers sulfites safe for most people, roughly one in 10 will experience a reaction to sulfites including rashes, hives, itching, restricted breathing, asthma attacks, and, in serious cases, anaphylactic shock.

What’s more, sulfites have been found to worsen a number of conditions including chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome and liver dysfunction, to name a few.

If keeping sulfites off your plate isn’t reason enough to avoid most sun-dried tomatoes, consider this fact:

Nearly every brand of sun-dried tomatoes is made with conventional tomatoes – one of the foods most contaminated with pesticide residues.

In fact, according to the USDA Pesticide Data Program, there are 35 pesticide residues commonly found on conventional tomatoes. Of these:

  • 5 are known or probable carcinogens (linked to cancer)
  • 14 are hormone disruptors (linked to thyroid disorders, diabetes and metabolic issues)
  • 6 are neurotoxins (linked to brain disorders including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s)
  • 3 are reproductive toxins (linked to infertility or birth defects)

The good news is that you can enjoy the delicious, bold flavor and powerful, disease-fighting nutrients of sun-dried tomatoes – without exposing your body to harmful pesticides or preservatives.

The Best Brand of Sun-Dried Tomatoes: Get Rich Tomato Flavor and Powerful Nutrients… Sans Toxins

Using only nature’s preservatives – like sea salt, rosemary and olive oil – Mediterranean Organic Sun-dried Tomatoes pack delicious flavor and provide a potent source of the antioxidant lycopene. In fact, gram-for-gram, sun-dried tomatoes provide more lycopene than any other food! (Sun-dried tomatoes provide 45,902 micrograms per 100g serving, 24,787 micrograms per cup, and 918 micrograms per piece. Compare this to cooked tomatoes, which provide 7,298 micrograms per cup. Raw tomatoes provide 4,631 micrograms per cup. )

Not only does lycopene defend against free radical damage that contributes to the physical signs of aging, it has also been found to:

  • Reduce the risk of some cancers (including prostate, breast and skin cancers)
  • Protect against macular degeneration
  • Guard against heart disease

Look for Mediterranean Organic Sun-Dried Tomatoes at your local health food store or online at

In addition to enjoying them whole with any number of dishes, try blending one or two with organic extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and herbs for a delicious salad dressing or marinade with superior antioxidant benefits! Here are a few simple and delicious recipe to get you started enjoying Mediterranean Organic Sundried Tomatoes.

Timbo B, Koehler KM, Wolyniak C, Klontz KC. 2004. Sulfites - a Food and Drug Administration review of recalls and reported adverse events. J Food Prot 67:1806-1811. United Stated Department of Agriculture (USDA) Pesticide Data Program (PDP) Punzi, JS, Lamont, M, Haynes, D, Epstein, RL, USDA Pesticide Data Program: Pesticide Residues on Fresh and Processed Fruit and Vegetables, Grains, Meats, Milk, and Drinking Water, Outlooks on Pesticide Management, June, 2005. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20. Mascio PD, Kaiser S, Sies H. Lycopene as the most efficient biological carotenoid singlet oxygen quencher. Biochemistry and Biophysics Volume 274, Issue 2, 1 November 1989, Pages 532-538. Giovannucci E, Ascherio A, Rimm EB, et al. Intake of carotenoids and retinol in relation to risk of prostate cancer. J Natl Cancer Inst. 1995;87:1767-1776. Sies H, Stahl W. Lycopene: antioxidant and biological effects and its bioavailability in the human. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med . 1998;218:121-124. Rao AV, Agarwal S. Bioavailability and in vivo antioxidant properties of lycopene from tomato products and their possible role in the prevention of cancer. Nutr Cancer . 1998;31:199-203. Franceschi S, Bidoli E, La Vecchia C, et al. Tomatoes and risk of digestive-tract cancers. Int J Cancer . 1994;59:181-184. Sesso HD, Liu S, Gaziano JM, et al. Dietary lycopene, tomato-based food products and cardiovascular disease in women. J Nutr . 2003;133:2336-2341. Sesso HD, Buring JE, Norkus EP, et al. Plasma lycopene, other carotenoids, and retinol and the risk of cardiovascular disease in men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005;81:990-997. Mares-Perlman JA, Brady WE, Klein R, et al. Serum antioxidants and age-related macular degeneration in a population-based case-control study. Arch Ophthalmol . 1995;113:1518-1523. Bové J, Perier C. Neurotoxin-based models of Parkinson's disease. Neuroscience. 2012 Jun 1;211:51-76. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.10.057. Epub 2011 Nov 10.

About The Author

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.

Kelley Herring – who has written posts on Healing Gourmet.

About Kelley Herring

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.

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