This simple Italian tomato sauce has been in my family for decades. Its perfect for pasta, pizza and whatever else you would need a good tomato sauce for.
Simple Italian Tomato Sauce
From the recipe collection of Al Adente Diva
Please don’t pay much attention to the word “simple” in the title. Simple doesn’t mean it’s blah. It just means that this is a fantastic basic tomato sauce that can be served as is, or used as base for other sauce recipes too. It’s really easy to make but it’s really good. My mom has been making this sauce since I was a kid. I got the recipe from her and now I make it for my own family every Sunday. That’s schedule permitting of course 😊. There are a lot of little things you can do to expand on the flavors (I will mention some at the end). For now, I’m just giving you the “basic” sauce recipe you can use for pasta, pizza or whatever you want.
⚡️I’m one of 4 kids. We could easily crush a entire loaf of white wonder bread taking turns sneaking dunks into this. It’s that kinda sauce. The kind that you can smell from your bedroom before you even open the door & know Moms got something good on the stove. I miss those lazy Sunday morning smells from when I was growing up. Hopefully my kids will have the same fond memories of our house when they get older.
Ok, I’m back from my trip down memory lane. Now let me explain a little bit…
🍅 I like to add Italian seasoning twice. Once in the hot oil and once in the actual sauce. I do that because I’m my opinion, the dried seasoning blooms in the oil really nicely and adds a great flavor to the whole sauce. Also, you have to layer flavors. This sauce is so simple you don’t want it to be bland. So, season the onion & garlic then the crushed tomatoes.
🍅 That said, I don’t love giving salt & spices measurements. That’s so personal. My mother rarely added extra salt because it wasn’t good for my dad. Some people are sensitive to certain seasonings so add (or not) however much you prefer.
🍅 Tuttorosso tomatoes are key! They are the only brand I have ever used and will ever use. you have not tried them- may I suggest you do. They really are a step above the rest.
🍅Now let’s talk about additions. There will be other blog posts about this but for now here are a few suggestions
🍅 If you like some heat, add some crushed red pepper flakes to the oil/onion when it’s sautéing. Same concept as the Italian seasoning- it will bloom in the oil & create a nice heat throughout the sauce.
🍅 You can add some red wine (about 1/2 a glass) if you like after the garlic before you’d add the tomatoes. Just make sure to increase the heat and cook the alcohol out for a few minutes.
🍅 Parmesan Cheese can add great flavor
🍅 Adding some shredded basil also makes for a really nice flavor & presentation, too
🍅Nothing wrong with tossing in a tablespoon or two of butter at the end either. It brings some richness to the sauce Just sayin 🤷🏻♀️
Okay, that’s the basic “level up” tips I have for a traditional sauce. Anything more & we start getting into adding, pancetta, beef, sausage, cream & all that good stuff. But those are for another day and deserve their own posts. I will refer to this basic recipe for many other recipes to come though that’s for sure.
I hope you guys like this one.
💜 Al Dente Diva
Simple Italian Tomato Sauce
- Medium Size Pot
- 1/2 Chopped Onion
- 2 Tbs Olive Oil
- 2 28oz cans Tuttorosso Crushed Tomatoes
- 4 Cloves Chopped Garlic
- 2 Tbs Butter
- In a medium size pot, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat
- Add the chopped onion and sauté
- When the onion is just about soft, add the garlic and some Italian seasoning.
- Cool for about 5 minutes stirring frequently.
- Add the crushed tomatoes
- Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and more Italian seasoning
- Turn the heat up and stir the sauce frequently until you see it just starting to bubble.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Stirring occasionally
- Taste and reseason if needed.