Marinara sauce is a classic, simple recipe that only needs a few easy-to-find basic ingredients. This sauce is one you want on hand for getting dinner on the table quickly. It’s such a versatile sauce and one that you can use as a base for all your tomato base recipes. Gluten-Free and Vegan!
Pasta is now recognised all over the world and is one of the most popular dishes. There are over 200 different kinds of pastas. Today, you can choose from spaghetti, spirals, lasagne, tortellini, penne. The list goes on and on.
You could almost have one different pasta dish every day of the year.
There are many pasta sauces to choose from as well. Did you know that there’s a pasta sauce for every region of Italy? In some cases, towns within regions, have their own traditional pasta sauce. With 21 regions in Italy, we there’s lots to choose from:-
- Pesto sauce originates from the region of Genoa.
- Carbonara sauce is from and loved by the Romans.
- The popular Bolognese pasta sauce, that is loved by so many people, originated in Bologna.
This marinara sauce recipe originates from Naples and is, undoubtedly, one of the most classic of all pasta sauces.
It’s a common tomato-based recipe that is used for popular dishes. You can use this on a pizza base. You can add this to a lasagna dish or tasty Italian meatballs.
I love this marinara sauce and I use it often. I keep a container of this marinara sauce in my freezer at all times. It saves me so much cooking time and get’s dinner on the table quickly. Furthermore, it’s preservative-free so you know exactly what goes into it.
When I rush home from work after a long day, I want something simple and easy for dinner. I simply reheat the marinara sauce on medium heat while my pasta is cooking. Dinner is made quickly and with minimal effort.
In fact, dinner can be ready on the table in 15-minutes when you have this ready-made marinara in the freezer. That’s how quick and easy mid-week dinners can be. For me, this is heaven on a plate!
DOES MARINARA SAUCE HAVE SEAFOOD IN IT?
Traditional marinara sauce does not have seafood in it. Restaurants in Australia and New Zealand often refer to marinara sauce as a seafood pasta sauce made with tomatoes and seafood. “Mare”, in Italian, means the sea. In Italy, however, marinara sauce is simply tomato sauce.
HOW TO MAKE MARINARA SAUCE
This marinara sauce can be prepared in as little as 30 minutes. All you need is a chopping board and a saucepan and wooden spoon for stirring. This also makes the cleaning up process (not my favourite task in the kitchen) minimal. And that’s always a bonus!
Start with a quality, non-stick pan. Drizzle a healthy doze of olive oil into the pan, enough to cover the pan base. Add the onions and cook on low heat for 5 minutes until the onions turn translucent. Don’t you love the smell of onions cooking on the stove?
Then add the garlic.
TIP – don’t add the onion and garlic together. Let the onions cook first. Adding them together can burn the garlic which will give it a bitterness.
Add the tomato puree and a little salt and sugar. Because tomatoes are quite acidic, the sugar acts to balance the acidity and creates a more balanced sweetness in the tomatoes. Cover with a lid and, on low heat, simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure nothing burns.
How ridiculously simple is this recipe?
Not only is this straight forward, no-fuss and inexpensive, it is also gluten-free, vegan, healthy and delicious! This recipe will suit just about anyone.
Pasta recipes are not complicated. And, this Italian marinara sauce may become your next favourite go-to spaghetti sauce for an easy weeknight pasta recipe. The thing is, you can add this sauce to any kind of pasta as well. I love it on penne or ravioli.
WHY IS THIS THE BEST HOMEMADE MARINARA SAUCE?
- This marinara sauce uses 5 basic ingredients. It’s a one-pot recipe so it saves time washing up. It can be used for other popular Italian dishes too.
- Use it on a pizza base or with meatballs or with other pasta recipes such as lasagna and cannelloni.
- The recipe can be made in larger batches and stored in the freezer for several months. Pull it out whenever you need it. Store-bought marinara sauces can be great, but you’ll be surprised how much better the homemade version can be.
Classic Marinara Sauce Recipe
- 1 medium brown onion (chopped)
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic (crushed)
- 400 ml tomato puree (passata)
- 4 fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- Heat the oil in a non stick saucepan over low heat.
- Cook onions stirring them regularly until the onions are softened and translucent. Approx. 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic, tomato puree, basil, sugar and salt.
- Cook on low heat for 25 -30 minutes covering the saucepan with a lid. Stir several times during the cooking process.
- Using high quality tomato puree is what makes this so good and wholesome. I recommend you check the ingredients list - a good quality puree should include tomatoes and salt - nothing more.
- Where possible, choose organic tomatoes.
- You can use canned or fresh tomatoes that are liquified in a blender.
- If using fresh tomatoes, you will need approx. 800g of tomatoes to liquify into 400ml of puree. Of course this will depend on the juicy-ness of the tomatoes.
- If using canned tomatoes, peeled tomatoes are preferred. You want the sauce to be smooth and sweet.
- Health TIP- When using canned ingredients always choose cans that are BPA-free.
- Sugar is optional for this recipe. You may use stevia as a sugar alternative.
- Stores in an air-tight container in the fridge for 5 days. Lasts for up to 3 months in the freezer.