Editor’s note: This is a list of the best beefsteak tomatoes that we update annually, based on ratings from the Burpee website. Since last year, we’ve made some updates to reflect changes in ratings and reviews. Some tomatoes have moved up in the ratings, some have moved down, and a few are holding steady. A few tomatoes got kicked off the list altogether, but the truth is, you really can’t go wrong with any of these!
I firmly believe that there is a section of heaven piled high with end-of-summer beefsteak tomatoes and a shaker of salt. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water. But what is the best beefsteak tomato variety to plant? The answer may have just become a bit simpler!
Beefsteak tomatoes are the kings of the garden patch often coming in at a pound (or more) per tomato. You’ve got to have some hefty tomato cages ready to support these big boys. Known for slightly thicker skin and juicy fruit, beefsteaks are enjoyed fresh from the garden, roasted, or even stuffed.
When we first started this list, a friend of mine had asked me which variety of beefsteak tomato seed was the best and honestly I had a bit of analysis paralysis. On Burpee’s website alone they featured 48 varieties all with different ratings and reviews. That’s when we had an idea. We would take those varieties and use the data points on their website, like ratings and reviews, to index the 15 best beefsteak tomatoes. Burpee has since culled the list to a little over two dozen varieties when we put this list together for 2023.
Our method and process
We created a list of all the beefsteak tomatoes included on Burpee’s site. Then, we eliminated any variety that had fewer than 10 reviews since those appear to be less tried and tested. Finally, we ordered the list by the ranking number and arrived at a list of 15. There are even a few new varieties on the list this year! Without further ado, here’s our index for the best beefsteak tomatoes to grow in your garden!
The official 15 best beefsteak tomatoes to grow in 2023
15. Brandywine Pink
The Brandywine Pink beefsteak tomato is an heirloom variety dating back to 1885. This variety grows in uniquely upright plants with fruit appearing in one or two per cluster. Brandywine Pink tomatoes have a sweet flavor profile offset with a bit of acidity. Some consider these the sweetest of the beefsteak tomatoes. These plants take 85 days to mature making them a later-to-ripen variety. Brandywine Pink beefsteak tomatoes average at about 14 ounces.
14. Chef’s Choice Orange Hybrid
This popular award-winning beefsteak tomato is a hybrid-heirloom that is lovely to look at in the garden, and just as easy to enjoy. With its balanced flavor and disease and crack resistance, this indeterminate plant develops fruit that is great for slicing, soups, and sauces.
13. Cherokee Purple (Last year’s ranking: No. 13)
Another heirloom pick, the Cherokee Purple beefsteak tomato has an initial smokiness with a sweet aftertaste. I’ve seen write-ups comparing the flavor to a zinfandel wine! These tomatoes are dark purple and red on the outside and feature a dark red interior. Cherokee Purples average about 13 ounces and take 85 days to mature.
12. Tomande Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 12)
The Tomande Hybrid gets 4.2 stars and has 21 reviews, with commenters raving about its disease resistance, productivity, and flavors reminiscent of an heirloom. This indeterminate plant produces 6-ounce fruits and matures in 72 days.
11. Burpee’s Supersteak Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 12)
Burpee’s Supersteak Hybrid is another supersize tomato with average fruit sizes of 2 pounds. Taking 80 days to mature, this variety of tomatoes features a traditional beefsteak flavor with a balance of acidity and sweetness plus a meaty texture.
10. Brandy Boy Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 10)
A hybrid of the Brandywine, the Brandy Boy Hybrid features the delicious flavor of the Brandywine with its good balance of acidity and sweetness, but maybe leaning a little on the sweeter side. The difference is the tomatoes grow in a more rounded shape with tidier growth. This variety also resists disease and yields bigger and earlier crops. The average size of this variety is 14 ounces and they mature in about 75 days.
9. Delicious (Last year’s ranking: No. 9)
Its name should say it all. The Delicious variety of beefsteak tomatoes are full of flavor and yield large fruits between 1 and 2 pounds each. Reviews applaud the old-fashioned flavor, meaning, again, the acidity and sweetness are balanced. This variety features a smooth crack-free interior making it excellent for slicing. These plants will mature in 77 days.
8. Orange Slice Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 7)
Averaging at about a pound per tomato, the Orange Slice Hybrid adds a big pop of color to your tomato patch. These tomatoes grow uniformly and are firm yet juicy in texture. Ready for harvest in about 75 days, these tomatoes pack a full-body flavor with a rich balance of acidity and sweetness. Can you tell there’s a tend in flavor for beefsteaks? It’s all about the balance!
7. Damsel Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No.6)
The Damsel Hybrid “offers outstanding heirloom flavor with uniform fruits in the 12 oz. range.” This indeterminate tomato is marketed as “dainty” and topping out around 6 feet, though several reviewers wrote that their plants grew well over 10 feet tall. Expect about 70 days from seed to harvest.
6. Pink Pounder Hybrid
The Pink Pounder Hybrid grows fairly consistent 1-pound juicy beefsteak tomatoes that are creamy with sweet, pink flesh and a superb balanced flavor.
5. Big Pink Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 5)
The Big Pink Hybrid is a medium-sized beefsteak tomato. It has a balance of sweet and acidic flavor, but leaning more on the sweet. With a smooth rosy exterior, these tomatoes average between 8 and 10 ounces and are ready for harvest in about 75 days.
4. Sunny Boy Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 4)
Hello, sunshine! You can’t miss these yellow tomatoes popping out of your garden. Averaging at about a pound each, these beefsteak tomatoes are perfect when sliced on a sandwich and feature a tender texture and sweet-acidic balanced flavor. This variety will mature in 75 days and produce high yields.
3. Super Beefsteak (Last year’s ranking: No. 3)
Another big variety, the Super Beefsteak produces fruit averaging 17 ounces each and takes 80 days to mature. With a great balance of acidity and sweet flavor plus a meaty interior, this variety produces many fruits per plant and is the most highly rated beefsteak tomato on the Burpee website.
2. Darkstar Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 8)
Do you like a savory-sweet flavor profile? Then the Darkstar Hybrid is just the thing. Multi-colored on the outside, these plants will produce many fruits averaging about 8 ounces apiece. Reviews point out a deep tomato flavor minus the acidity. These tomatoes take 75 to 80 days to mature and are especially good picks for resisting blight.
1. Orange Wellington Hybrid (Last year’s ranking: No. 2)
The Orange Wellington Hybrid has always been at the top of our lists, and this year it’s No. 1! These bright mid-to-large-sized beefsteak tomatoes are nearly seedless; have a sweet, low-acid flavor; and are amazing slicer tomatoes, but are also delicious roasted! Tolerant to Verticillium and Fusarium wilt, this is a hardy beefsteak tomato plant that produces consistent yields all season and averages about 12 ounces per fruit.
Are we missing your favorite variety? Tell me the best beefsteak tomatoes that grow in your garden. What else would you like us to rank? Let me know in the comments!
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