Making homemade marinara sauce is so easy to make with canned tomatoes and a few other simple ingredients for a fresh authentic pasta sauce that perfectly seasoned.
This recipe is great to freeze so that you always have it available to use with many pasta recipes like topping these baked chicken tenders, for chicken parmesan, meatballs, this classic lasagna recipe, and 3 cheese baked ziti,…..you can literally use this sauce for everything you’d like!
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Best Marinara Sauce Recipe
My husband taught me how to make this most incredible homemade sauce years ago. This recipe actually comes from his mother’s husband, Papa Mike, whose Italian mother taught him how to make.
Let me give you all the confidence you need to make this simple recipe. It is a really easy tomato sauce to make and is so much better than jarred sauce!
It is truly an all-time favorite! We use it for so many recipes other than spaghetti sauce. This marinara sauce is perfect as a dipping sauce and a pizza sauce too!
- Olive oil – enough to cover the bottom of the pot.
- Onion – chopped
- Garlic – fresh minced garlic is the best. But you can use jarred minced garlic as well.
- whole tomatoes – using canned whole tomatoes are my favorite. Plum and San Marzano canned tomatoes are my go-to’s to use.
- dried basil – you can also add in a few fresh basil leaves.
- dry oregano –
- sugar – to cut the acidity just a tad.
- black pepper – I add about ⅛ teaspoon.
Can I use fresh tomatoes?
Yes, you sure can make this marinara recipe with fresh tomatoes! Fresh tomatoes from our garden are always wonderful. Each 28 ounce can is approximately 2 pounds of tomatoes or 10-12 tomatoes, depending on their size.
1. You can use other types of canned tomatoes like canned crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes. I think the flavor is better with whole tomatoes though.
2. Add more favorite seasonings like a bay leaf or a little fresh thyme.
3. Add crushed red pepper flakes or a splash of hot sauce to give the sauce a kick.
4. Add vegetables like mushrooms, onions, bell peppers, or zucchini for a veggie-packed sauce.
5. Add a cup of grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.
How to Make this Marinara Sauce from Scratch
Step 1 – Add the olive oil to a large pot.
Step 2 – Add the chopped onion to the pot and sauté until translucent and soft. Then add the garlic and sauté until fragrant. Do not brown! This is very important.
Step 3 – Place tomatoes and onions in a blender or food processor and blend about 5-10 seconds until smooth and pureed.
Step 4 – Add in dry ingredients
Step 5 – Bring sauce to a slow boil and reduce heat to low. Simmer for a minimum of 1 ½ hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes so not to burn the bottom. I prefer to simmer for about 3 hours but it is still yummy if you cook it at the minimum.
- Use an immersion blender if you have one and blend the tomatoes directly in the pot you will be using.
- Using high quality canned tomatoes and fresh garlic for best flavors.
- Allow the sauce to simmer for at least an hour to give the flavors time to meld together. The longer you let it simmer, the more bold the flavors will be.
Homemade Marinara Sauce
- 4 Tablespoon olive oil enough to cover the bottom of the pot.
- 1 small onion chopped
- 4-6 cloves garlic minced
- 84 ounces Whole Plum tomatoes (3) 28 ounce cans
- 2-3 Tablespoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- pepper to paste
- Pour olive oil in a large pot.4 Tablespoon olive oil
- Add the chopped onion to the pot and saute until translucent and soft. Do not brown!! This is very important. Then add the garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.1 small onion, 4-6 cloves garlic
- Place tomatoes in a blender or food processor and blend about 5-10 seconds until smooth and pureed.84 ounces Whole Plum tomatoes
- Then pour the blended tomatoes into the pot.
- Add in dry ingredients2-3 Tablespoon dried basil, 1 teaspoon oregano, pepper to paste, 1 teaspoon sugar
- Bring the sauce to a slow boil and reduce heat to low. Simmer for a minimum of an 1 ½ hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes so not to burn the bottom. I prefer to simmer for about 3 hours but it is still yummy if you cook it at the minimum.
Nutritional facts are estimates and are provided as a courtesy to the reader. Please utilize your own brand nutritional values to double check against our estimates. Nutritional values are calculated via a third party. Changing ingredients, amounts or cooking technique will alter the estimated nutritional calculations.
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