Just speaking from experience here: this quick, easy homemade tomato sauce recipe is one you’ll want to keep in arms reach at all times. It’s easy enough for a midweek meal (chicken meatballs anyone?), but special enough to impress your in-laws.
No disrespect to the Prego’s of the world, but there simply is nothing better than homemade tomato sauce. First of all, the aroma alone is irresistible. However, more importantly, the taste, is what seals the deal. It’s fresh, has a hint of sweetness and void of any additives – such as sodium, sugar, and preservatives. And, you know what the cherry (tomato) on top is? It’s so. damn. easy.
‘To only know pasta sauce from a jar is the equivalent to thinking that mac & cheese only comes out of a box.’
Before, I go into more detail about how quick and easy this tomato sauce is, I must confess that I grew up on store bought tomato sauce. In fact, I didn’t start to make my own sauce until my mid-twenties! To only know pasta sauce from a jar is the equivalent to thinking mac & cheese only comes out of a box. After all this time, I can confidently tell you this recipe was worth the wait.
Allow me to explain why.
Yes, it warms your heart to think about the Italian grandmother standing over a pot of pasta sauce stirring for 8 hours. It warms mine, too. However, I am here to tell you that granny can do something else while the sauce cooks. Slow cooking the sauce definitely has its benefits but it’s not the only way to get savory, delicious homemade pasta sauce on the table. The reason why anyone slow-cooks pasta sauce for hours is because it cooks off all the water and allows for the natural sugars and rich, deep flavors to caramelize and develop. However, not everyone has time for that which is why we must quickly create that magic ourselves. You can make this recipe with either crushed canned tomatoes or canned plum tomatoes. If you are using canned plum tomatoes you’ll want to strain the water from the tomatoes before cooking them down. But, do keep the water to add back in once the tomatoes start to caramelize. It’s a key step so the water doesn’t slow up the caramelizing process.
Homemade tomato sauce ingredients
Unlike store bought, this easy homemade pasta sauce doesn’t have any added sugars yet has an intense boost of sweetness thanks to the carrots, onions, and caramelization from the tomatoes. Not only will it be sans added sugar, it won’t have any of that extra sodium or preservatives like jarred sauce. Not to mention with homemade pasta sauce, you can control the flavors to your liking. Love garlic? Throw another clove in there. Love the smell of rosemary? Add another sprig or two.
Disclaimer: This recipe will make your house smell good
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion
- 1 medium-large garlic clove, minced if you love garlic, throw in another clove
- 1 28 oz. can of plum tomatoes (you can also use crushed)
- 1 medium - large carrot diced
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp thyme leaves, chopped
- 2 sprigs rosemary leaves only, chopped
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- salt & pepper to taste
- Pour olive oil into a dutch oven or soup pot and turn stove to medium heat.
- Once the pot is hot, add your diced onions and a pinch of salt to get them to sweat. Cook for a few minutes or until they become translucent.
- Add your garlic, let cook for another 2 minuets
- Add your diced carrot and cook for another 5 minutes
- While your carrots are cooking, place a strainer over a bowl and strain the plum tomatoes so the water separates - but keep the water in the bowl you will need it later. If you are using crushed tomatoes you can skip straining the tomatoes and pour the can directly into your pot.
- Add the tomatoes into your pot, add your tomato paste
- Include your thyme, rosemary, oregano, fresh parsley, and salt & pepper
- Bring your flame down low, cover your pot, and let simmer for 30-45 minutes
- Add the canned water to the pot. (if you are using crushed tomatoes, skip this step.)
- Once all the flavors have seeped into the sauce take your immersion blender and blend everything together. If you don't have an immersion blender, wait until the sauce cools, and use countertop blender.
- Pour over your choice of pasta or favorite meatballs, and enjoy!
You can use crushed tomatoes for this recipe. If so, skip step 5.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 88Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 264mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 3g