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The best tomato sauce from scratch for pasta

The best tomato sauce recipe

I can’t believe it’s already November 1st. October went by in a flash and ended in a flurry of activities. With Halloween yesterday, we started the day with swim lesson for my son, a kids’s birthday party and then pumpkin carving of two pumpkins (a cat and stormtrooper – both B’s choice). Of course, this was followed by trick or treating. B has gone out before but this is the first year it didn’t rain and he loved it.


He was a stormtrooper yesterday  but went as Spider-Man to daycare on Friday. It’s all about multiple costume changes apparently these days.

Despite all this busy-ness, I did follow my meal plan (although not to a T). We had so much leftovers from Japanese takeout from Friday, that was dinner last night and we had some more pasta and sauce tonight – dinner from Thursday. This pushed the chili I made tonight to dinner tomorrow night. Chili is one of those foods that do taste better the next day so we’re looking forward to it!

Another thing that tastes better the next day is the tomato sauce I  make. I’ve been making it so long that I don’t even use a recipe anymore but it is based on Marcella Hazan’s simple recipe – linked to the NYT recipe here. I also pinned it to my Tried and tested Recipes board on Pinterest. Looking at the recipe again, I realize I don’t use as much butter as it calls for so my version is healthier.  🙂

Best basic tomato sauce (adapted fromMarcella Hazan)


  • 28 oz can/bottle of San Marzano puréed tomatoes (original recipe calls for whole tomatoes, your choice)
  • 2 Tbsps butter
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Good pinch of sea salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper, to your taste
  • herbs – basil, oregano – I used dried as no fresh on hand

Optional ingredients:

  • 1/2 – 1 lb lean ground beef
  • about 1/2 C red wine (whatever you would drink)
  • 1/2 pkg of mushrooms (227g), diced – more or less
  •  1 bell pepper, diced – whatever colour you choose – I had red


  • Bring the first seven ingredients to a boil over high heat than put on low heat (close to simmer).
  • Heat a fry pan over medium-high heat and spray pan with canola oil. Once hot, brown meat, approximately 5-7 minutes, breaking up meat with spatula. Season with salt and pepper. Add wine and cook for additional minute on high. Place meat in simmering tomato sauce.
  • Sauté mushrooms and bell pepper for a few minutes then also place in sauce.
  • Simmer for 30-45 minutes. Serve with your favourite pasta


I will be posting again tomorrow with a new meal plan. See you then!

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