This Homemade Tomato Pasta Sauce is bursting with flavor! Rich, thick and hearty. Make extra to freeze it for when those lazy cooking days strike!
This may come as a shock to you but there are nights when I just don't feel like cooking. [Gasp!!!] I don't feel like chopping or washing dishes. Boiling water seems like too much effort. What do I make every time the laziness hits? Homemade Tomato Pasta with meat sauce. Mmm pasta sauce.
I used to just crack open a bottle of my favorite brand of pasta sauce and dump it in a pot, but have you looked at those ingredients lately?! It's horrifying. Is all that sugar and salt really necessary? And don't get me started on "natural flavoring". So several weeks ago (back in 2012 - can you believe how old we are getting?!) I made it my mission to create my perfect homemade pasta sauce: a little sweet, bursting with flavor and super tomatoey!
The Origins of this Homemade Tomato Pasta Sauce
I started with the recipe from The New York Times Cookbook (1961 Edition) that I picked up from The Strand Bookstore in NYC. The Strand is certainly heaven here on Earth.
Want to know another true story? When I was younger (like last week) I used to eat pasta sauce straight from the pot. In High School my mom particularly caught on to this penchant for pasta sauce and she would make a pot of pasta sauce with ground sirloin just for me! No noodles, just sauce. Isn't she the greatest?!
I do feel like this is more socially acceptable than it sounds. Just call it gazpacho and surprisingly suddenly it's normal.
As we were! I know you're here for the sauce. This sauce is darn good. It is rich from the tomato paste, chicken stock and all the herbs. The chicken stock is optional and, without it, it is more like my 15 Minute Pasta Sauce. I do love the additional flavor from the stock and that it bumps up the yield, so I get more sauce from the same amount of tomatoes. A little extra stove-time is all she needs to make it extra thick and luscious.
I make a large batch and then freeze the rest, so I always have it on hand for when those lazy days strike. Or just, you know, Tuesday.
You can (and should absolutely) try this addictive lasagna or this vegetarian lasagna or pour it over homemade Italian meatballs for a hearty meal! You know I won't judge if you eat it straight out of the pot though!
Homemade Tomato Pasta Sauce
- 2 ½ cups onion (chopped )
- 6 cloves garlic (minced)
- 3 ½ tablespoons olive oil
- 52 oz whole Italian tomatoes (San Marzano, 2, 28 oz cans)
- 12 oz tomato paste (2, 6oz cans)
- 2 ½ cups chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 5 sprigs basil (on the stem)
- 2 sprigs oregano (on the stem)
- 3 sprigs thyme (on the stem)
- ¼ teaspoon dried sage
- Gently sauté the onion and garlic in the olive oil until onion is transluscent, stirring often. Add the tomatoes and crush by hand. Add the tomato paste, broth, herbs, bay leaf, salt and pepper.
- Simmer uncovered about two hours, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the bay leaf. The sauce should be thick. Continue to cook if you would like it thicker.
- Add browned meat of choice, pour over pasta, use in lasagna or chicken parmesan, or just eat it with a spoon!