Whats The Difference Between Marinara Sauce And Spaghetti Sauce
Spaghetti sauce and marinara sauce are often used like synonyms but they arent exactly the same . Though they are both tomato based sauces, marinara sauce is a meatless sauce that is slow-simmered and made with tomatoes, garlic, and herbs. Traditional spaghetti sauce is basically a more complex version of marina sauce that has additional spices and is often made with meat and cut up vegetables.
Watch The Marinara Sauce Video Tutorial:
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How To Make Keto Marinara Sauce
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Can I Substitute Fresh Tomatoes
Fresh tomatoes would essentially have to be turned into crushed tomatoes with the added steps of blanching and peeling the tomatoes then simmering them down to the correct consistency which will really increase the time for making homemade marinara.
If youre looking for a marinara sauce with fresh tomatoes, make sure to check out our Mushroom Mariana Sauce.
Spaghetti Sauce Vs Marinara Sauce
While spaghetti sauce and marinara sauce taste similar, typically spaghetti sauce is served thicker. You can, however, use marinara sauce in place of spaghetti sauce.
Can I use marinara sauce in place of pizza sauce? Even though marinara sauce is a bit thinner than pizza sauce, the flavor is similar and you can use it in place of pizza sauce.
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Ingredients In Marinara Sauce
- Whole tomatoes. To make your very own Marinara, youre going to need a bunch of tomatoes. You may use fresh plum or Roma tomatoes, canned San Marzano tomatoes, or a mix of each. I used 8 Roma tomatoes and one can of whole San Marzano tomatoes. Whole stewed tomatoes have the best flavor, especially when compared to chopped or diced canned tomatoes.
- Onions. I recommend yellow onion as it has the most mellow and mild flavor.
- Garlic. As with most recipes, youll want to add fresh garlic . Add as much or as little as you like to suit your own personal preference.
- Dried Herbs. If you want a super clean, super fresh Marinara Sauce, then leave out the dried herbs. That said, a pinch of Italian seasoning or dried basil adds an extra layer of flavor without a whole lot of extra work.
- Fresh Basil. Fresh basil, on the other hand, is a must . Unlike dried herbs, fresh basil helps keep the sauce tasting fresh and light. You dont need a lot of basil, maybe 10 leaves total .
- Salt/Pepper/Sugar. Each of these are totally to taste. In other words, some people may like a marinara sauce that is saltier, while others may prefer one that is sweeter. Keep in mind that you dont want much of either of these ingredients. The sugar is there mostly to balance the acidity of the tomatoes, not sweeten the sauce.
Ingredients For Marinara Sauce:
The ingredients are pantry staples that we always keep on hand so its easy to whip up. Since the ingredient list is very short, make sure to source the best quality ingredients you can find.
We used extra virgin olive oil for extra flavor and San Marzano Crushed Tomatoes. San Marzano is an Italian variety of plum tomato and the gold standard of Italian Marinara.
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Variations Of This Recipe
- Fresh tomatoes to make this recipe using fresh summer tomatoes, see below in the FAQ section.
- Vinegar free the vinegar in this recipe helps add a faint touch of sweetness and richness, but if you have all the other ingredients, and not the vinegar, it isnt 100% necessary.
- Fresh herbs if you have access to great fresh herbs, you can absolutely use those. Just add double or triple the amount of the fresh herbs. Dried herbs are more concentrated, which is why youd need more of the fresh to achieve the same flavor.
- All pantry ingredients I love that this recipe can be adapted to use all pantry ingredients, for those times when you havent been to the grocery store. To replace the fresh onion, use roughly 1 1/2 2 tsp of onion powder. To replace the fresh garlic, use 1 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder. And just omit the optional fresh basil stirred in at the end.
More About This Recipe
- Using Tomato PasteGrowing up, I could always find petite cans of tomato paste in my grandmother’s cupboard. She would use it in sauces and stews. These days, you can always find a couple cans of paste in my cupboard as well. This versatile ingredient is a great go-to for fast meals.What is Tomato Paste?Tomato paste is a highly concentrated puree of tomatoes. It’s made by cooking peeled, seeded tomatoes for several hours, thereby cooking out much of the liquid. It offers a high concentrate of tomato flavor in a thick, compact form.It can be purchased premade in cans or tubes, or made at home and frozen for future use. A good recipe can be found in Preserving Summer’s Bounty.What Can Tomato Paste Be Used For?Tomato paste is a great ingredient for adding tomato flavor to a variety of dishes, from sauces to soups. It’s a very thick and thus should be combined with water to cook with. This loosens it into a sauce.One fabulous use for tomato paste is to use it to make a fast marinara sauce, such as my Easy, Fast Tomato Marinara. This sauce is perfect with pasta, ravioli and more. Use it on chicken parmigiana or for dipping mozzarella sticks, as well. It makes a smooth sauce, which is perferrable for some people. You can also add some chunkiness to it by combining a can of diced tomatoes and a can of tomato paste in a pan with seasonings. Bring to a boil, simmer and serve.More Tomato Paste RecipesLooking for more great ideas for tomato paste? Try these:Fresh Tomato Soup
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How To Make Homemade Marinara Sauce:
In a large skillet or Dutch oven, saute onion in olive oil over medium heat until soft and translucent .
Add minced garlic, dried basil, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes saute 1 minute longer.
Add tomato paste, tomato sauce and crushed tomatoes .
Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover with a lid, and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Taste the sauce and add granulated sugar as needed to balance the acidity in the sauce.
Stir to combine.
Serve over pasta, as a dipping sauce for garlic bread, etc.
How To Make Marinara Sauce From Scratch:
Homemade marinara might be one of the easiest sauces youll ever make in your own kitchen! Heres a quick rundown of how to make marinara sauce.
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A Delicious Versatile Homemade Sauce
Not many people can resist a good pasta dish. But what good is pasta if you don’t have a great sauce to go with it? I whipped up this Homemade Marinara Sauce to eat with my HOMEMADE TURKEY MEATBALLS. But there really is no stopping how you can serve this marinara sauce. Put it over spaghetti, in pasta casseroles and as a dipping sauce. There is no wrong way to use this at all! If you want to try a little something special for dinner tonight then ditch the canned sauce and try my Homemade Marinara Sauce Recipe!
How To Make Marinara Sauce:
A saucepan and spatula are all you need to make a homemade marinara sauce that tastes better than any canned version. Watch the Video Tutorial below and you will memorize this recipe in no time.
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What Makes It The Best
Shannon created this recipe by combining fresh-from-the-garden tomatoes and herbs with garlic, onions and tomato paste for a bright and balanced sauce that the Test Kitchen couldnt stop raving about.
She originally developed this recipe with a friend to make the most of a bumper crop of tomatoes. Because of this, Shannon likes to make huge batcheswere talking 220 pounds of tomatoes hugewhich she cans and gifts with a pound of pasta around the holidays. Its just the thing where you know you have the best possible ingredients and you know you can feel good about giving it to your family, she says. Its so much better than going to the store and buying something for somebody when instead you can give them a part of yourself.
A recipe that special needs to be shared, so keep reading to get Shannons tips for making the best marinara sauce youve ever had.
Dont forget to check out some of our other homemade pasta sauce recipes.
Ways To Serve Marinara Sauce:
Dunk it, spread it or sauce it over, under and in it! This sauce is meant for so many recipes and will be a new hit in your family. We love to add this homemade marinara sauce to anything we create.
- Pasta: The classic and simple dishes like spaghetti noodles, ziti or lasagna are always family favorite.
- Meat: Add this sauce to Italian meatballs, chicken parmigiana, sausage tomato gnocchi or any meal that asks for marinara sauce.
- Soups: Pasta e Fagioli is also another classic and favorite! This sauce is perfect for adding it right into the pot.
- Pizza: Spread it over homemade dough and add all your favorite toppings.
- Dipping Sauce: Use this for dipping breadsticks, mozzarella cheese sticks, baked ravioli or stuffed pizza bites. Game night just got better with this dipping sauce.
- Sandwiches: A meatball sandwich or sliders is the perfect kid friendly lunch, main dish or snack.
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How To Make It
If you’ve made homemade marinara sauce before, you know that it typically involves blanching and peeling tomatoes and slowly simmering them for hours to develop a deep, rich, mellow flavor. Well, this is not that marinara sauce. For one thing, let’s just be honest here…I am too lazy to blanch and peel tomatoes. And that’s okay, because I don’t at all mind little bits of tomato skin in my sauce. In fact, I enjoy a marinara with a bit of texture, and this one has that.
My method for making this sauce is to cut my tomatoes into chunks and then squeeze them with my hands into a big pot to break them up into little bits. This can be a messy process, so if you would rather give your tomato chunks a few pulses in the food processor to achieve the same effect, I would completely understand.
Make Your Own Marinara Sauce Using Fresh Tomatoes
Today were talking all about making your own marinara sauce using fresh tomatoes.
This marinara sauce is so easy to make using classic ingredients. When I say easy, I reallyyy mean it.
The process is simple- let me break it down for you in a nutshell.
Step 1: chop ingredients
Step 2: throw it in the oven and let that baby simmer for a minimum of 4 hrs
Step 3: sit back, relax, drink a glass of wine while you take in all the aromas of fresh marinara sauce cooking in your kitchen
Say BYEEE to the store-bought jarred tomato sauce thats filled with preservatives, sodium, and shit that we cant pronounce.
Now heres the best part about this recipe. You can make it your own! Im giving you the base.. which is BOMB already as is. But if you fancy more garlic.. go ahead and add in a few more cloves. If you have fresh herbs in your fridge or backyard add in a sprig of thyme or rosemary. If you like it spicy add in some red pepper flakes. YOU DO YOU! Youre the cook, so customize it and make it yours!
I prefer my sauce to be thicker and chunkier , but if you like yours more smooth, you can do a quick blitz in the blender.
If you make this on Instagram Stories be sure to tag me so I can check it out. If you have any other amazing additions, let me know below 🙂
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Ways To Use Marinara Sauce
Spaghetti and Meatballs: theres truly nothing better than spaghetti and meatballs. Swap out the pasta sauce for a jar of this homemade marinara sauce.
Ratatouille: if youre a veggie-lover, then make our ratatouille recipe! Its made with different kinds of squash, ricotta cheese, and a tomato sauce that can easily be swapped for homemade marinara.
How To Store & Reheat Marinara Sauce
- Refrigerating: allow the marinara sauce to cool completely. Then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 5 days.
- Freezing: allow the marinara sauce to cool completely. Then transfer to an airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months.
- Reheating: transfer frozen marinara sauce into the refrigerator 24 hours before reheating to thaw slightly. Reheat in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until hot. Add ¼ cup/60 ml water at a time if too thick.
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Making Marinara Sauce Ahead Of Time
Even though this sauce may not take all that much effort to make, on a busy weeknight, I completely get that you may not want to stand over the the stove for an extra 30 minutes to make marinara.
No worries, this sauce can be made 100% ahead of time! I normally make mine the day before, but you can make it up to 5-6 days ahead of time .
In A Rush Make It Ahead Of Time:
This marinara sauce is perfect for making ahead of time. In fact you could double the recipe and freeze the extras.
Allow the marinara sauce to cool and store it in an airtight container or jar in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. To freeze, put the homemade pasta sauce in an airtight container or freezer ziplock bag and store it for up to 4 months.
Also, if youd like to use fresh tomatoes for this recipe, substitute about 6-7 fresh tomatoes for the 28oz. can of whole tomatoes. Blanch them and remove the skins before step 1 of the recipe.
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Can I Freeze This Homemade Marinara Sauce
Yes, this sauce freezes well so there is no reason you cannot make a double batch each time.
Place your cooled sauce in an airtight container or a freezer-safe bag. Marinara sauce can be frozen for up to 3 months.
When the craving for spaghetti hits, you will always have the sauce ready! Simply thaw for a few hours in the fridge or heat your frozen sauce , in a large pot on low with a lid to cover. Slowly thaw the sauce and bring it up to temp.
Easy Homemade Marinara Sauce
Homemade Marinara Sauce doesnt get any easier! This requires just a handful of ingredients and 20 minutes on the stove for a memorable Italian Marinara. Everyone needs a great pasta sauce in their recipe collection and this one is a keeper.
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Homemade Marinara Sauce Recipe Made From Fresh Tomatoes
When I searched for a recipe on how to make homemade marinara sauce from fresh tomatoes, I had a difficult time finding one.
Almost every recipe that I found used canned tomatoes. Which is a great recipe to have when you want to make it in the middle of the winter.
However, it is garden season here and I have ripe tomatoes being picked every day. And that means that I need to use them before they go bad.
I wanted to make Chicken Parmesan in our air fryer and I wanted to make a small batch to use on top.
In addition, I had some leftover breadsticks from the night before that I thought would be perfect to dip into the sauce.
So I decided to give it a try using our fresh tomatoes from the garden.