I’ve always liked spaghetti and spaghetti sauce but when I started making my own spaghetti sauce, I realized I liked my own sauce best of all! I love making my own spaghetti sauce because I get to be in charge of the flavor, texture, and strength. Plus, I know everything that’s in it! I did try making my own tomato paste once but it was way too much work! I’m glad to have other options for tomato paste and sauce.
If you want a really smooth sauce, I recommend using tomato paste. If you don’t mind it with a little texture or you have an immersion blender, you can make it with crushed tomatoes. Using crushed tomatoes to make your sauce is preferable because there is less processing involved. Whole, raw tomatoes can also be used. Simply cut them into chunks, put them into a pot with water, and simmer slightly. You can remove the seeds but if you don’t mind them, that’s one less step and less work!
After the tomatoes have cooked for a period of time and are soft, you can puree them with an immersion blender or stand blender. After the tomatoes are pureed, simmer on low heat and begin adding your spices.
I also love tomato sauce because as long as you are tolerating tomatoes, you can eat this on the introduction diet of GAPS, as early as stage four. If you are on the introduction diet, make sure you are adding fresh herbs. When using fresh herbs, you will need to use larger amounts and plan to simmer your sauce for a longer period of time. A long simmer simply makes your sauce more delicious.
For a quicker spaghetti sauce, use crushed glass can tomatoes, like the ones pictured below. Begin cooking them and, when warm and soft, immersion blend them or add them to a stand blender. If you want the sauce less chunky, you can blend before you add your herbs and spices.
If using tomato puree or tomato paste, you will need to reconstitute it with water. A small amount of paste can go a long way! Start with adding equal parts water and paste. Continue adding water if needed until you get to your desired consistency. Make sure you do not use tin canned paste, especially if it’s lined with plastic coating. I recommend only using glass canned items from a company you know and trust.
If you have any fermented garlic, add a tablespoon or so of the liquid at the very end of your cooking. This will send your sauce over the top.
Traditional spaghetti sauce recipes have sugar in them. If you are transitioning your family from a sugary diet, you could consider adding a little bit of honey into the mixture. However, it is best to not add a sweetener if you can avoid it.
This spaghetti sauce recipe can be used for a lovely spaghetti night, or you can use it to make zucchini pizzas!
Once you have your tomato base, read below to find out how to finish your sauce.
Ingredients to Make Your Own Tomato Sauce
18 oz. crushed tomatoes
2 Bay Leaves
1 tbsp lard
⅓ cup minced onion
3-5 cloves of garlic
2 tsp Dried Oregano
1 tsp Dried Sage
2 tsp Dried Thyme
1 tsp Salt
Directions to Make Your Own Spaghetti Sauce
This recipe uses crushed tomatoes. You can also use tomato paste or whole tomatoes. (See above for directions on using tomato paste or whole tomatoes to make your sauce.)
Add one 18 oz. of crushed tomatoes into a pot. Add a bit of water to the jar, swirl, and add to the pot. Immersion blend the tomatoes at this stage if you like texture in your sauce.
Add two whole bay leaves into tomatoes on the sauce.
Warm your lard in a cast iron skillet. Finely chop your onions and garlic. Add onions to your skillet first. Mince your garlic. Add garlic.
When onions and garlic are softened, add them in with the tomatoes. If you would like a completely smooth sauce, you can immersion blend the sauce at this stage.
Add your dried herbs into the mixture and stir together.
Add water as you need it if your sauce is too thick. As it simmers it will reduce so to start, you want a soupy consistency for better mixing. If you add too much water at any point, you’ll simply need to simmer your sauce longer.
Simmer for at least twenty minutes. The longer you simmer your sauce, the better it will be.
Store any leftover sauce in the jar that your tomatoes came in. I leave the bay leaves in so the sauce continues to be flavored. It will keep for about a week in the fridge.
Use your spaghetti sauce to top roasted spaghetti squash or to make zucchini pizza bites!