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Homemade Spaghetti Sauce

You may never buy the jarred stuff again! With this classic {and easy!} recipe, you can enjoy a delicious bowl of spaghetti covered with a hearty homemade sauce. Made with Italian sausage, savory herbs, and tomatoes, this is the ideal family-favorite meal.

About the Recipe

If there's one recipe you should know how to make, it's this spaghetti sauce! This recipe is such a simple meal to make for your family - even if you are learning the basics of cooking. In fact, this was my first victory with our picky-eater, so it might work for yours, too!

I remember my mother and grandmother simmering this recipe on the stove all day long. The smells swirling around the house bring back sweet memories! We love to enjoy this Spaghetti sauce recipe on cooler, fall days sitting around the kitchen table. It’s a meaningful way to close out the weekend and begin another week all together.

Bowl of spaghetti noodles and sauce with a fork

How to Make Spaghetti Sauce from Scratch

Ingredients

  • Mild Italian Sausage - Most recipes call for ground beef, but I like to use ground, mild Italian sausage for the extra kick and flavor. If you like spicy, go for a hotter sausage.
  • Onion - Yellow onion is my go to onion! As it sautés, the flavor becomes softer and milder. No funky onion flavor here!
  • Garlic - Just a tad of garlic goes a long way! I like to skip peeling, smashing, and all of that and opt for the jarred garlic that is already minced for you! Saves time and money.
  • Mushrooms - I don't use fresh in this recipe, so canned mushrooms do just fine. Speed up the cooking process with pre-diced Monterey Mushrooms Italian Style.
  • Tomato Sauce - A can of plain, generic tomato sauce will work. You can also use jarred pasta sauce if you prefer.
  • Diced Tomatoes - You can buy Italian flavored or plain. This is also my favorite opportunity to use homemade canned tomatoes when I have those on hand.
  • Stewed Tomatoes - I love the chunks of sliced tomatoes in the sauce!
  • Tomato Paste - For a few dollars more, you can buy this in a TUBE! I always end up throwing half the can out otherwise. Save money here and always have this ingredient on hand.
  • Spaghetti Noodles - The ideal pasta shape for this sauce! Angel Hair, Fettuccini or other long noodle will work, too.
  • Oregano
  • Basil
  • Olive Oil

Tip: In lieu of the individual seasonings, dried Italian seasoning will work too.

Steps

The steps for this recipe are really easy to do and don't require any fancy gadgets or tools.

1. In a large dutch oven, add one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add sausage and brown until crumbled.

Make sure your sausage hits that pot when the oil is nice and hot to get a good color on the sausage pieces.

2. Add diced onion, minced garlic and chopped Monterey Mushrooms to the same pot, and sauté until onion turns translucent and sausage is browned.

If your sausage is lean, save time by browning sausage and onion at the same time.

3. Reduce heat to medium-low, and add cans of sauce, diced tomatoes, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste to the pot and stir well.

4. Add seasonings, and a pinch of sugar, if desired.

A pinch of sugar neutralizes the acidity of the recipe. It’s optional, but many people add a pinch of sugar to their tomato sauces.

5. Simmer on stovetop for at least one hour, or until your are ready to serve that evening.

Pot of spaghetti sauce

Differences between marinara sauce, pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce

Pizza sauce is an uncooked tomato sauce while pasta sauce is cooked.

  • Pizza sauce is an uncooked tomato sauce that cooks as the pizza bakes.
  • Marinara sauce is a basic meatless tomato sauce that can be used in a variety of ways.
  • Spaghetti sauce is simply a sauce that goes over spaghetti noodles, like this one. Of course, we all know spaghetti is a shape of noodle.

Tips for storing and making ahead

This sauce freezes beautifully. Simply put your leftovers in a Tupperware container when cool and freeze. Defrost in the fridge or sink for several hours, then warm on the stovetop.

Sometimes, leftover spaghetti sauce can become think and congealed as it rests. To loosen up the sauce, add about 1 cup of tomato juice, tomato sauce, or water to the leftovers to the desired consistency in a saucepan and warm.

Variations

  • Many of the ingredients are flexible in this recipe. If stewed tomatoes aren’t available, another can of diced tomatoes will do just fine - and vice versa. I make it a point never to pigeonhole myself with recipe ingredients!
  • This recipe pairs well with whole wheat pasta noodles, gluten-free pasta noodles, zoodles, and other pasta substitutions.
  • It’s also a great way to sneak in a few veggies! I used Monterey Mushrooms in this particular recipe. The mushrooms are finely diced and include Italian seasonings, which add even more flavor. They are diced so small the kids won't even notice them!
Monterey Mushrooms Italian Blend Banner Graphic
Monterey Mushrooms Italian Blend

Recipe

Yield: 6 people

Easy Spaghetti Sauce Recipe

Bowl of spaghetti noodles and sauce

You may never buy the jarred stuff again! With this classic {and easy!} recipe, you can enjoy a delicious bowl of spaghetti covered with a delicious homemade sauce. Made with hearty pieces of Italian sausage, savory herbs and tomatoes, this is a family-favorite meal for any time of the year.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Mild Italian Sausage
  • 1 large Onion, diced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1 Package of Monterey Mushrooms, Italian Style
  • 2 12 oz Can of Tomato Sauce
  • 1 12 oz Can of Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 12 oz Can of Stewed Tomatoes
  • 1 6 oz Tomato Paste
  • 1 pound Spaghetti Noodles
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Basil
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil

Instructions

For the Stovetop

  1. In a large dutch oven, add one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add sausage and brown until crumbled.
  2. Add diced onion, minced garlic and chopped Monterey Mushrooms to the same pot, until onion turns translucent.
  3. Add cans of sauce, diced tomatoes, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste to pot and stir well.
  4. Add Oregano and Basil, and a pinch of sugar, if desired.
  5. Simmer on stovetop for at least one hour, or until fragrant and flavorful!

For the Crockpot

  1. In a large frying pan, add one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add sausage and brown until crumbled. Add to crockpot.
  2. Add diced onion, minced garlic and chopped Monterey Mushrooms to the same pot, until onion turns translucent.
  3. Add cans of sauce, diced tomatoes, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste to pot and stir well.
  4. Add Oregano and Basil, and a pinch of sugar, if desired.
  5. Simmer in crockpot for 4 hours, or until fragrant and flavorful!

Notes

  • Cook time is not precise. As long as the meat is cooked through, the sauce is technically cooked; however, the longer the sauce cooks the more flavor the dish will have.
  • A pinch of sugar reduces the acidity of the recipe. It's not necessary, but many people add a pinch of sugar to their tomato sauces.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 481Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 1354mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 6gSugar: 15gProtein: 22g

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