How to make spaghetti sauce from can of tomato sauce?

  • Posted by: cris
  • December 26, 2011


Jan W. July 25, 2014
I just take a can of San Marzano tomatoes, break them up by hand into a saucepan with a little bit of the basil from the can (the only time I usually keep it in), some oregano and sea salt. That's it. Sometimes if the tomatoes are a little more acidic than usual I add a very small amount of sugar or honey, but its rare, and I try to pour off about 1/2 of the juice before adding. They cook down very nicely in about 15-20 minutes and have a stunning flavor with a lot of umami. Sometimes there are fibrous bits from the tomatoes and I just remove them.
Nina L. July 24, 2014
Many great recipes here. Just one thought though, do not over cook your sauce. Most tomato sauces need only about 20 -25 minutes to cook. You can tell when it's finished when the sauce creates a thicker rim around the edge of the sauce pan.
Susan N. April 23, 2019
In my very Italian family, my grandmother and mother both made homemade "gravy" from scratch and the key was to cook for hours. This is my way, my daughters way and soon to be my granddaughters way. So for 5 generations....let it cook people... it's worth the wait.
Booooooi September 4, 2019
Bruh who df has hours. Cook? st people have somethig called a job. ❤
Chef N. January 4, 2014
U cook the spegatti in hot boiling water and then. U can pour the tomato sauce an it will cook
fhp September 1, 2013
Keep it simple. 2 tablespoons of finely minced onion sauted in the same amount of olive oil is more than adequate. Saute slowly. Do not let onions brown. Turn up the heat just before dumping the can of tomatoes into the pan. Tomatoes should sizzle. Add a little salt to taste. Cook briskly just until it turns into a sauce. Do not over cook. Crush some fresh basil and throw into the tomato sauce when you turn off the heat. Cover and let the fresh basil permeate the sauce. Remove basil before serving. If possible buy Italian San Marzano (pelati) Canned Tomatoes.
GIOVANNI50 August 29, 2013
It is simpler than all of the above. If you have crushed tomatoes, or passata, just put the amount you wish on a pan and let it reduce over 20 minutes on medium to high high heat. Sure you can start with garlic and onions, but simple tomato sauce with perhaps a bit of oregano and salt and pepper, work for me every time. Sam Marzano tomatoes are the best of course.
Travis B. August 28, 2013
Always always use San Mariano tomatoes
cookinginvictoria July 19, 2013
I wrote a not-recipes column a couple of months ago for food52. This is the way that I make my plain vanilla marinara.

amydonovan July 18, 2013
Quick & dirty- sauté in a couple of glugs of olive oil two sliced garlic cloves. As soon as it starts to brown, add dried oregano & basil, salt, black pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Swirl around for about 10 seconds, then add the canned tomato sauce. Add a couple of glugs of white wine or vermouth. Simmer for 20 minutes. This makes a great topping for stuffed shells, manicotti, pizza or focaccia. Also good on spaghetti or other pasta where a chunky sauce is not desirable. Also an excellent start for pasta fagiole.
kellysm99 December 27, 2011
From Marcella Hazen: peel & halve a medium onion & put in 2 qt pot. Add 5 tbls butter & a large can of good plum tomatoes diced or shredded by hand straight into the pot. Add some salt & fresh grindings of pepper. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a lively but slow bubble for about 45 minutes--the sauce should be thick & creamy. Discard onion before serving over cooked pasta. Top with grated Parmesan. This is so delicious you can eat it straight out of the pot with a spoon. Serve the onion on the side sprinkled with coarse salt. .

Voted the Best Reply!

Cannizzo December 26, 2011
The best way to make spaghetti sauce is with crushed tomatoes olive oil garlic onion salt pepper fresh basil fresh parsley and some tomato paste 2 small cans to a 28oz.can of crushed if you want to add meat you brown equal parts frowns beef and friend pork with your onion and garlic let it summary for 2hours if too thick you add water chucked stock does not belong in a spaghetti sauce I'm o from Naples Italy and nobody there ever put stock in spaghetti sauce
Sam1148 December 26, 2011
Basic: Warm it, a touch of garlic, some oregano and thyme or Italian seasonings a pinch of sugar..let it simmer about 30 mins.

More complicated: For meat sauce; brown some ground beef with some onions, mushrooms, bell peppers drain--add spices garlic, add tomato sauce a touch of sugar. (optional).

Erika H. June 17, 2019
Not all heroes wear capes. Best answer. Saved my dinner
SKK December 26, 2011
Saute garlic, onions, celery until transparent. Add seasonings of your choice - oregano, basil, parsley, thyme for example. Dried are fine. Add tomatoe sauce and diced tomatoes - either fresh or canned. If you are using meat, you have browned it by now and can add that. If it is too thick, thin with chicken stock. If it is too thin, let the sauce cook down.

You can also add sauteed mushrooms if you like.

Open a bottle of vino and enjoy!
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