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Homemade spaghetti sauce topped with basil

Easy Homemade Spaghetti Sauce Recipe

  • Author: Suzy
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Serves up to 6 people


My family's secret homemade spaghetti sauce is easy to make using a few staple ingredients you may already have on hand! Perfectly thick and packed with flavor, you'll be ditching that store bought pasta sauce! 


  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (I used Private Reserve Greek extra virgin olive oil)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, grated
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 carrots, finely grated (use a food processor or a grater)
  • 28 oz canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water (pasta cooking water, preferred)
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp sweet Spanish paprika
  • Pinch red pepper flakes, optional
  • Handful fresh basil, about ½ cup packed, torn
  • Handful fresh parsley, about ½ cup packed, chopped

To Serve:

  • 3/4 lb  to 1 lb of cooked pasta of your choice


  1. In a large pan heat the extra virgin olive oil over medium heat until just shimmering. Add the onions, garlic, and finely grated carrots. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring regularly until softened.
  2. Add the crushed tomatoes and about 1/2 cup water. Add a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Stir in oregano, paprika, crushed pepper flakes, if using. Finally, stir in the fresh basil and parsley.
  3. Bring the sauce to a boil, then turn heat to low. Cover and let simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes. Check partway through, and if you feel the sauce is too thick, you can add a bit more water (preferably some of your pasta cooking water). When sauce is ready, throw in more fresh basil, if you like.
  4.  If serving for dinner, add cooked pasta of your choice to the sauce. Mix to combine and let the pasta cook in the sauce over low heat for about 5 minutes.


  • Cook's Tip to Serve:  Letting the pasta and the sauce cook together for a few minutes before serving allows the past to absorb some of the sauce.  It's like the pasta is sauced from the inside out. Delicious!
  • Meat Option: If you want to add meat, start with 1 lb of ground beef, ground turkey, or ground sausage (your choice of ground meat). Heat a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. Add in your ground meat and cook over medium heat, tossing regularly, until fully browned. Drain the meat and transfer to a plate for now. In the same braiser or pot, saute the onions, garlic and carrots for 5 minutes in a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. Add the cooked ground meat back to the pot, and toss to combine. Follow the recipe instructions above from step #2 on. 
  • Storage: This vegetarian pasta sauce will keep well in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. Before you store it, make sure the sauce is completely cooled, then transfer to a tight-lid glass container or jar and refrigerate.
  • Freezer Instructions: If you want to make batches of this sauce to use at a much later time, it will freeze well. Again, let the sauce cool completely. Transfer to freezer-safe containers, allowing some room for the sauce to expand as it freezes. Cover tightly and add the date. Freeze for about 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight.
  • Visit our Online Shop to browse quality Mediterranean ingredients including olive oils and some of the spices used in this recipe.
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: Spaghetti Sauce, Pasta Sauce, Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce, Homemade Pasta Sauce