Let me get this straight: there is absolutely nothing wrong with being in a pinch for time and picking up a jar of pre-made marinara sauce to whip up some quick spaghetti. But when your taste buds are craving some good old fashioned pasta, you don’t need to call your great grandma or go digging through faded old recipe cards. I’ve done all the work here for you, taking ingredients inspired by my mother’s and grandmother’s to-die-for marinara sauce, hence the name, “Mama-Style Marinara Sauce.”
Not only is this recipe simple, but its way healthier than grabbing a sodium-packed jar of something that rhymes with “Lego” off the shelf. This is a tried and true staple to add to your comfort food kitchen rotation. It delivers fabulous feel good aromas throughout your house that will have your whole family begging the question, “When’s dinner?!”
A great, homemade marinara sauce doesn’t require hours of slaving over stewing and peeling tomatoes. All you need are a few basic ingredients and less than an hour of your time.
Mama-Style Marinara Sauce
1 24-oz jar of unsalted tomato sauce
1 15-oz can of unsalted diced tomatoes
1/2 sweet yellow onion (I like Vidalia), diced
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 c packed fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 tbsp dried thyme
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp onion powder
2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 whole bay leaf
Pinch of red pepper flakes, amount to liking
Optional: 1 lb lean, ground turkey
- Start by heating olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add in diced onions and garlic and saute until onions are soft. If using turkey, add turkey and saute until brown.
- Add in tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, basil, thyme, oregano, onion powder, sugar, salt, pepper, and pinch of red pepper flakes. Stir the ingredients to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, add the bay leaf and cover. Cook for at least 30 minutes (the longer it simmers, the more the flavors will come out!).
- Serve over your favorite pasta and let the food ecstasy commence!
Tried it? Loved it? Let me know below!