Easy Flavorful Homemade Marinara

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Tomato season is officially over in Pennsylvania. What are we to do?! Well, while the not-so-red store bought tomatoes can still do the trick in small quantities for various recipes, now enters a season where my tomato sauce is maybe slightly less fresh but, much easier to make! We use homemade tomato sauce for many things including homemade pizzas, homemade calzones, lasagna, and as a dipping sauce for a variety of other items.

Take a bit of time with your food prep this weekend to whip up some home-made sauce in no time. It will be as flavorful as grandma used to make, and won’t have the added sugar of most store-bought brands! Many sauce recipes include sugar to cut the acid from the tomatoes but, onions will provide the same function and add much better flavor.
Let me know how you plan to use it or, your favorite Italian dish below! Lasagna is my lifetime fave and I make this protein-packed vegan version all the time!

Easy Homemade Marinara Sauce

Makes 3.5 Cups


  • 1 large 24 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes*
  • 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil or
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium white onion, diced finely
  • 1 tbsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

If you do not have an immersion blender, dice the pieces of tomato ahead of time


  • Heat oil in a medium stockpot over low-medium heat
  • Add garlic, stir and add black pepper and red pepper
  • Add the diced onions, stir, and cover, letting cook for 5 minutes
  • Add the whole peeled tomatoes, spices, and tomato paste
  • Stir and cover for 5-7 minutes
  • When sauce starts to bubble, remove the top, stir well, and reduce heat to a simmer
  • Optional: simmer an additional 30-60 minutes to allow for optimal flavor development and blend with immersion blender until desired texture is achieved.


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  1. Love this recipe! You’re right that tomato season is over, but fear not about the freshness. That’s the beauty of canned tomatoes. They’re sealed within hours of being picked, in-season, which locks in all that flavor and nutrition! Some would even say canned tomatoes are fresher than fresh, when you factor in the field to sealed story, vs raw tomatoes that are picked early, and then shipped all over the country to grocery store shelves. This often can take weeks. Local, ripe tomatoes are tough to beat in season, but 80% of the year, you’re really getting the freshest flavors out of tomato products. https://youtu.be/nYS9b9_E9zk