Learn how to make this simple marinara sauce recipe with only basic pantry staples! With just a little bit of time you can make a marinara to easily rival any store bought sauce!| Gluten Free + Vegan + Whole30
I can’t even remember the last time I bought a jar of store bought marinara.
And that’s not because I’m one of those food snobs that likes to pretend that they’re above things like Kraft mac & cheese and cake made from a box. Box cake is delicious and anyone who says otherwise is just lying to themselves!
No. I don’t buy marinara anymore because it just seem worth it any more when I know how easy it is to make it from scratch when I need it. Sure, it adds some time on to whatever I’m doing, but the end result of a homemade sauce is always worth it.
How to Make Marinara Sauce – Step by Step
- Start out by sautéing your onion in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil for a few minutes. Make sure to cook over a medium-low heat, stirring frequently to prevent the garlic from burning.
- Next, add the tomato paste and garlic and cook another couple of minutes. Cooking the paste before adding the crushed tomatoes will make for a more intensely flavoured marinara in the end.
- NOTE: The picture above says to cook the onion & garlic together but I have since changed the recipe instructions to cook the garlic after the onions. Garlic burns much quicker than onion and should not be cooked as long.
- Follow up by adding in the tomatoes & simmering. I like adding a splash of balsamic vinegar to my marinara for an extra punch of flavour, but this is a totally optional step. Add the salt along with the tomatoes and let this mixture simmer gently on the stove for 20ish minutes.
- Finally, season with additional spices & enjoy.
You can use this marinara as an all purpose red sauce. It’s my go-to pizza sauce when I need. It makes about 2 cups which can go along way depending on what you’re using it for.
If you’d prefer sauce with a spicy kick – I recommend you try out my arrabbiata sauce (spicy tomato sauce)!
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (30 ml)
- 1/2 large white onion, diced (about 1 cup)
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 15 ounce cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar (optional)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt or more to taste
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add the onions and cook until golden, about 5 minutes. Make sure to stir often to keep the garlic from burning.
- Stir in the garlic tomato paste and cook another 2 minutes.
- Add the crushed tomatoes and vinegar (if using) and salt. Bring the sauce to a simmer and then lower the heat to maintain that simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring every so often.
- Taste and season with more salt if needed. Stir in the the oregano and remove from heat.
- If you prefer a smoother marinara, blend the sauce using an immersion blender or in a jug blender, working in batches.
- Serve warm and enjoy.
- Once cooled completely you can store this in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer up to 6 months.
- To freeze: wait for the sauce to completely cool down, then transfer to a quart sized freezer safe resealable bag of container and freeze until solid.
- To reheat, add the frozen sauce to a large sauce pot with a lid to reduce evaporation and warm over a low heat stirring every so often until warmed through.