Red sauce has many names: red gravy, Sunday gravy, marinara & spaghetti sauce, to name a few. In our house, it’s a weekly Sunday staple. Jump to Recipe
We use this homemade red sauce to make our favorite pasta dishes. This recipe makes about 5 quarts.
I like to make it in huge batches of this so we have leftovers for the freezer. It’s nice to be able to just grab extras from the freezer instead of making a new batch each week. This red sauce freezes nicely! Currently, I freeze it in pint mason jars. I’ve had a few quart jars break in the freezer but I haven’t lost a pint jar yet so that’s what I stick to now. I used to use these great plastic containers but we’ve all but eliminated plastic from the house and kitchen.
With the addition of a little oregano and thyme, this red sauce is a great homemade pizza sauce.
A great thing about this homemade red sauce is it makes for good, frugal meals! We follow the Nourishing Traditions diet which promotes fresh, organic foods. I prefer to make my sauce from fresh tomatoes, however, that doesn’t always happen. The rains last year made for a sad tomato crop in our area. There were very little tomatoes for home canning. So, when canned, organic tomatoes are on sale, I stock up.
Recently, I noticed that Sams Club carries nongmo tomato products in both the regular and industrial size cans. This recipe will use 1 #10 can, or the big size at Sams Club, of crushed tomatoes. For less than 5 dollars, I can make around 5 quarts of homemade red sauce. That’s much less expensive that most of the sauces available in the market. Even some of the ones with lesser quality ingredients. We were totally out and because of the current food shortage I had to grab what I could find. I’m grateful Walmart had crushed tomatoes on their shelf!
Another great thing about this homemade sauce is you control the ingredients. If, like us, you avoid white sugar as much as possible, you have options. You can use organic sugar, sucanat, honey, monkfruit sweetener. There are multiple options available. You just need the equivalent of 3 tablespoons sugar. I like to use honey. You can also leave out the sweetener altogether, I like it with a little sweetness.
If the tomato crop is good this year, I’ll get a recipe using fresh tomatoes on the blog!
HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE RED SAUCE
Making this sauce is easy, even if you’re new to from scratch cooking. Chop a few veggies, saute some ingredients and open a can (or a few). It’ll make your kitchen smell amazing as it simmers on the stove. I use my favorite dutch oven for this recipe, it’s a great all-day-of-simmering pot! I use it almost daily! You could also throw this in the crockpot all morning and let it simmer. Let the lid vent a little for the last hour.
My hubby says this homemade red sauce tastes like Ragu. I think it’s a pretty good copycat recipe.
1) Gather all your ingredients. You’ll need:
- 1 Tablespoon salt, more to taste, we use pink Himalayan
- 1 Tablespoon oregano, more to taste
- 2 Teaspoons parsley, more to taste
- olive oil
- good pinch of baking soda
- 2 onions
- 1 red bell pepper
- 2 celery stalks
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- crushed tomatoes, 4 – 28oz cans or 1 #10 can
- 3 Tablespoons sugar, or equivalent, we use honey
2) Chop your veggies. We’re going to blend it all up at the end so it doesn’t matter if they’re all chopped the same. Just chop away.
3) Add a tablespoon or 2 of olive oil to your pot and get it hot. Toss in the onions, bell pepper and celery. Saute until your onions start to brown, 5-10 minutes.
4) Once the veggies are cooked well, add in the garlic. It only takes 30-60 seconds for your garlic to go from well sauteed to burnt. Watch it carefully. You’ll start to smell the garlic when you know you’re ready for the next step. Be prepared.
5) Add your tomatoes and stir well.
6) Stir in your salt, sugar (or honey), baking soda, oregano and parsley
7) Let simmer on the stove for at least a couple hours. I like to let it go for around 4.
8) After it’s simmered all morning, give it a good stir and taste. Adjust your seasonings. Grab your stick blender and blend. If you don’t have a stick blender you can always let it cool and blend in a blender or food processor in small batches.
9) It’s ready to serve
Easy Homemade Red Sauce
- 1 tbsp salt we use pink Himalayan
- 1 tbsp oregano more to taste
- 2 tsp parsley more to taste
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 pinch baking soda
- 2 onions chopped
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 2 celery stalks chopped
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 4 28oz cans crushed tomatoes
- 3 tbsp sugar or equivalent
- Chop your veggies.
- Add a tablespoon or 2 of olive oil to your pot and get it hot. Toss in the onions, bell pepper and celery. Saute until your onions start to brown, 5-10 minutes.
- Once the veggies are cooked well, add in the garlic. It only takes 30-60 seconds for your garlic to go from well sauteed to burnt. Watch it carefully. You'll start to smell the garlic when you know you're ready for the next step. Be prepared.
- Add your tomatoes and stir well.
- Stir in your salt, sugar (or honey), baking soda, oregano and parsley.
- Let simmer on the stove for at least a couple hours. I like to let it go for around 4.
- After it's simmered all morning, give it a good stir and taste. Adjust your seasonings. Grab your stick blender and blend. If you don't have a stick blender you can always let it cool and blend in a blender or food processor in small batches.
- It's ready to serve.
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