A method of manufacturing closed end ceramic fuel cell tubes with improved properties and higher manufacturing yield is disclosed. The method involves bonding an unfired cap to a hollow unfired tube to form a compound joint. The assembly is then fired to net shape without subsequent machining. The resultant closed end tube is superior in that it provides a leak-tight seal and its porosity is substantially identical to that of the tube wall. The higher manufacturing yield associated with the present method decreases overall fuel cell cost significantly.