The best ketchup is tangy, sweet, and delicious on just about anything. Not long ago, there was a time when people in the culinary world acted like ketchup was beneath them. This might’ve been the worst time in food history. Restaurant menus and signs would say things like, “No ketchup allowed!” and “Do not ask for ketchup.” The implication was that ketchup is trashy and it would ruin their food. Totally false! Ketchup doesn’t ruin food; it enhances it.
Ketchup is obviously popular, but it’s still underrated. Like, most people can probably agree that it tastes great on fries, but no one really thinks about just how nuanced and complex ketchup is—it’s sweet, salty, and umami all at once. Some researchers have even said it hits all five tastes (sour and bitter, too). Ketchup is a flavor explosion in your mouth. That’s what I love about it!
We tried bottles and bottles of the best ketchup brands to find out which you should buy the next time you’re at the grocery store. Go ahead and catch up on the best ketchups out there.
- Brooklyn Delhi Curry Ketchup
Does Brooklyn Delhi Curry Ketchup remind me more of a chutney than a ketchup? Yes. Does that bother me? No! It’s still delicious! The label asserts that it’s flavored with roasted garlic, chilies, and ginger, which sing in every single taste. This ketchup is great on fries, but I’m convinced you could put this on almost anything and it would be delicious. Eggs, dosa, avocado toast, lentils—anything that could use a spiced, aromatic punch would be tasty paired with this ketchup.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Amazon
- Tapatio Spicy Tomato Ketchup
This tastes like Tapatio mixed with ketchup, but better! This ketchup is a little spicy and super tomatoey, and would work just as well on a chicken quesadilla as it would on a burger. I brought a bottle of this Tapatio Ketchup home because I genuinely think it’s among the best ketchup you’ll find at the grocery store right now.
Credit: Liv Averett / Tapatio
- Trader Joe’s Organic Ketchup
After tasting all sorts of products from TJ’s, I can confidently say that the Trader Joe’s Organic Ketchup is one of the best pantry staple products they sell. This ketchup is sweet, sweet, sweet and there is nothing wrong with that. I might not dip a sweet potato fry in these, but this ketchup would add the perfect sugariness to a regular french fry, Making it one of the best ketchup brands to buy.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Trader Joe’s
- Hunt’s Classic Tomato Ketchup
In my humble opinion, Hunt’s unfairly lives in the shadow of Heinz ketchup, but not everyone agrees. Hunt’s Classic Tomato Ketchup Is a favorite of many, including Mythical Kitchen’s Josh Scherer. He finds Hunt’s “really well balanced” and “a little on the sweeter side,” which he enjoys. I found that Hunt’s tasted more natural because you get the flavor of actual tomatoes. The best way I can describe it is that Heinz is banana-flavored candy and Hunt’s is a banana. Both are good, but they’re different! Still, Hunt’s makes one of the best ketchups at the grocery store.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Amazon
- Signature Select Tomato Ketchup
I am convinced that the Signature Select ketchup factory is directly next door to the Heinz ketchup factory. They taste and look eerily similar. Of course, it doesn’t have that same star quality that a brand like Heinz has, but Signature Select ketchup is wonderfully tangy, sugary, and chemically red. If you have a hankering for Heinz but the direct deposit has not hit your bank account yet, go for this Signature Select tomato ketchup. It’s the best ketchup on a budget.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Safeway
- Whataburger Ketchup & Whataburger Spicy Ketchup
Whataburger is a beloved Texas-based fast food chain that is known for their brand-specific sauces. I was screamed at by Sporked followers for not trying it during our first ketchup taste test back in early 2022. Now I have tried it, and I am here to report that it’s good. In fact, the bottled version is just as delicious as what they serve at the restaurant! I love both the regular and spicy versions of Whataburger ketchup. My favorite element of this famous fast food sauce is how tangy it is. Their ketchups blew me out of the water with their vinegar-y twang. It makes sense, though. The acidity of these ketchups would cut through a fatty burger perfectly.
Credit: Liv Averett / Target
- Heinz Chipotle, Habanero, and Jalapeño Ketchup
Heinz’s new line of spicy ketchups is phenomenal. I couldn’t choose just one to add to this list—they all deserve a spot among the best ketchups. The chipotle is smoky. The habanero is really spicy. The jalapeño is nice and fruity. They’re all so good, and they’re different enough that I think you should have all three of these ketchups on hand at all times. My favorite? I can’t pick. It would be like asking someone to pick their favorite child. For me, singling out a Heinz spicy ketchup would be a more difficult decision!
Credit: Liv Averett / Instacart
- Red Gold Tomato Ketchup
Red Gold also makes a perfect ketchup. It’s very, very similar to Heinz in both taste and texture, but to me, Red Gold tastes like it’s made with tomato paste rather than tomatoes. It’s very savory and the flavor is a little more concentrated. This ketchup has a cult following and I understand why. It’s great. I would eat this or Heinz any day of the week. It’s definitely one of the best ketchup brands you can buy.
Credit: Liv Averett / Amazon
- Heinz Tomato Ketchup
I cannot emphasize enough how blown away I was by the fact that Heinz ketchup was so much better than any other ketchup we tasted. Sporked editor-in-chief, Justine Sterling, warned me as we headed into the taste test that Heinz would reign supreme, but I was skeptical. “How much better could it be?” I thought. I thought wrong! This had a ketchup taste that felt too good to be true. It was bright and zippy and a little sweet. This is what you think of when you think of ketchup.
Credit: Ryan Martin / Walmart
Best Brand Collab
Josh Scherer’s Pick
Best Heinz Impersonator
Best Cult Favorite
Best of the Best
Other ketchup we tried: O Organics, Heinz No Salt Added, Good & Gather, Good & Gather Organic, Heinz Organic, Heinz No Sugar Added, Heinz Simply, Primal Kitchen Ketchup, Great Value Tomato Ketchup, True Made Foods Veggie Ketchup, G Hughes Ketchup, First Street Ketchup, Annie’s Organic Ketchup, Signature Kitchens Ketchup, Stonewall Kitchens Country Ketchup, Sir Kensington’s Ketchup