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Easy Homemade Marinara Sauce

Make magic in your kitchen in under an hour with just a handful of basic ingredients! Buying your marinara sauce may be quicker, but this homemade version is guaranteed to taste better!

July 22, 2021
Homemade Marinara SaucePhoto By Canva
Difficulty Easy
Servings 8 people
Preparation 5 mins
Cooking 60 mins
Total 65 mins



  1. To make this gorgeous marinara sauce at home, start by adding 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to a large saucepan and heat it on medium-high heat.
  2. Then add the chopped onion and sauté for 5 to 6 minutes or until soft, stirring frequently.
  3. Add finely chopped garlic and canned tomato paste to the sautéed onions and cook for about a minute while stirring constantly.
  4. Pour in the red wine and cook for another whole minute while stirring constantly.
  5. Then add crushed tomatoes, salt, and pepper and bring the mixture to a boil while stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to low and gently boil for an hour, stirring occasionally.
  6. Once the sauce has cooked for an entire hour, take it off the heat and either serve warm immediately or store it for later.
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 Homemade Marinara Sauce
Serves 8
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*
Protein 2.7 g5.4%
Total Fat 2.5 g3.2%
Sodium 510 mg22.2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.


  • San Marzano, Roma, Giulietta, Margherita etc., are some of the best tomato varieties for making marinara sauce, so stick to these for the best results.
  • Use a white or yellow medium-sized onion for this recipe and take care to chop it finely.
  • For best results, use fresh garlic for this recipe (either finely minced or pressed) instead of the jarred version.
  • This recipe calls for simmering the sauce for an hour, but you can also leave it simmering on very low heat for up to 6 hours to further help develop the flavor. Just be sure to stir occasionally and add water or vegetable broth as needed.
  • It is essential to simmer the sauce on low heat to prevent it from boiling over and splattering all over your stove top.
  • If you're in a hurry, you can reduce the simmer time from an hour to about 20 minutes, but keep in mind that the sauce won't have the same depth of flavor.
  • The sauce made with this recipe tends to have some small chunks, so you can blend the cooled sauce in an immersion blender or regular blender if you prefer a completely smooth marinara sauce.
  • This marinara sauce recipe only gets better when consumed a day or two after cooking, so make it ahead of time to enhance the flavor and give everything time to marry together.
  • The addition of red wine in this recipe gives the sauce a deeper and more complex flavor, but you can substitute it with water or vegetable broth if you like.
  • If you can’t find canned crushed tomatoes, you can make crushed tomatoes at home by blanching and peeling fresh tomatoes before simmering them over the stove top till they reach the desired consistency.
  • To make marinara sauce with tomato sauce instead of tomato paste, use 3 tablespoons of tomato sauce for every tablespoon of tomato paste and reduce the sauce for longer on the stove to get the desired consistency.
  • If you prefer a spicier sauce, add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes to spice things up.
  • Feel free to add any herbs of your choice to this sauce. If adding basil, add 3-6 leaves into the sauce as it simmers and remove before serving.
  • You can also add some freshly grated Parmesan as per your preference to the individual servings or main sauce right before serving.
  • Stir in ½ to 1 cup of heavy cream into the marinara before serving for a creamier texture.
Rate This Recipe

Tired of marinara sauce brands’ bland flavors and unhealthy ingredients? Then make this easy marinara sauce that tastes absolutely amazing, contains no preservatives or harmful ingredients, and is highly customizable, perfect for pairing with pasta, meatballs, and pizza.

What is Marinara Sauce?

Marinara sauce is a type of tomato sauce typically made with tomatoes, garlic, onions, and herbs, but due to its easy modification, it can also include spices, olives, and red wine. The sauce likely originated in southern Italy sometime in the 1600s after tomatoes first arrived in Europe.

How to Make Marinara Sauce?

Sauté a medium-sized chopped onion for 5 to 6 minutes in a large saucepan on medium-high heat. Stir frequently and add garlic and canned tomato paste before cooking for about a minute. Add red wine and cook for another whole minute before adding crushed tomatoes, salt, and pepper and bringing the mixture to a boil while stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the sauce for an hour, stirring occasionally.

What is the Difference Between Marinara and Spaghetti Sauce?

The key difference between marinara sauce and spaghetti sauce lies in their ingredients and cook times. Spaghetti sauce uses meat and takes longer to cook than marinara sauce, which centers around tomatoes and consequently takes less time to prepare. There is also a difference in flavor and texture as spaghetti sauce is generally richer and thicker than marinara sauce.

Uses of Marinara Sauce

This is a very versatile sauce and great for a number of dishes. There are literally no modifications required to use the marinara sauce for pizza, pasta, Afritada, Menudo, Ratatouille, etc. And the sauce even works great as a dipping sauce for finger foods like meatballs, chicken bites, mozzarella sticks, etc.

Here are some delicious recipes that you can serve with Marinara Sauce:

How to Store Marinara Sauce?

Let the sauce cool down to room temperature before transferring it to an airtight jar, sealable container, or plastic ziplock bag and storing it in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. To keep the sauce for longer, freeze it in freezer bags or airtight containers for up to 6 months.

Recipe byPetite Gourmets

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