Learn how to make the BEST Fresh Tomato Sauce!
This simple fresh tomato recipe is ready in minutes and makes a delicious, easy dinner when paired with spaghetti. Try it tonight!
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Wondering what to do with fresh tomatoes?
You have to try this mouthwatering homemade Tomato Sauce! It really doesn't get any more simple or satisfying, and I can't think of a better way to show off tomatoes fresh from the garden (or farmers market).
This fresh Tomato Sauce is simple, yet so delicious. And paired with pasta, it's perfection!
Keep reading to learn how to make this yummy pasta sauce, then serve it for dinner tonight.
About the Recipe
This spaghetti with Tomato Sauce is one of my favorite summer and early fall meals. It's super easy and super delicious.
If you're intimidated by making homemade pasta sauce, this recipe is a great place to start. The ingredients are minimal, the technique is simple, and the results are so good.
Best of all though, this recipe is fast! You can cook the sauce and the pasta in about 30 minutes.
Make it for busy weeknights or for a no-fuss summer dinner party ... either way, you're going to love it.
The ingredients for this homemade Tomato Sauce are beyond simple. Here's what you'll need:
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Fresh Tomatoes
- Kosher Salt
Obviously, the best tomatoes you can find are a must. Preferably from the garden or farmers market.
If you're purchasing tomatoes from the grocery store, smell them. Do they smell like fresh, delicious tomatoes? Are they juicy feeling, not rock hard? Then, you're good to go.
Once you try this basic pasta sauce recipe, feel free to change things up a bit. You can add ingredients like artichoke, olives, or fresh spinach, spice things up with crushed red pepper flakes, and more ... this recipe is flexible.
How to Make Fresh Tomato Sauce
Let's talk about how to make this delightful homemade sauce. It's so much easier than you'd think!
It's all about simple, fresh flavors. You'll begin by sauteing the onions in olive oil. Season them with a little salt to help build the flavors in your sauce.
Once the onions start turning golden brown on the edges, stir in some garlic. Cook that for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly ... it should smell garlicky and delicious.
The tomatoes come next.
Some sauce recipes call for peeling tomatoes, but that's a pain in the you know what. We're keeping things simple here, so no peeling required.
Add the tomatoes to your onions and garlic, then bring your sauce to a simmer. As it cooks, the tomatoes will soften and break down.
Simmer your sauce until it's nice and thick. It should only take about 15 to 20 minutes. Then season it to taste with salt (kosher salt is my fave) and stir in the fresh basil.
Adding the Spaghetti
Once your sauce begins simmering, you'll start the pasta. That way, the sauce and pasta are ready at the same time. I like spaghetti with this recipe, but other long, thin shapes (like linguine) work, too.
Cook your pasta is a big pot of generously salted water until al dente. When the pasta is done, remove ½ cup of pasta water and set it aside.
Drain the cooked pasta, then add it to the finished sauce. Toss everything together (tongs work best), adding just enough of the reserved pasta water as you do to help the sauce coat the spaghetti.
I like to serve this spaghetti with Tomato Sauce sprinkled with Parmesan and extra basil. The sauce is vegan though, so feel free to skip the cheese is you prefer.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do you still have questions about making this easy sauce? Here are a few frequently asked questions to help you out!
Do you have to peel tomatoes for sauce?
Many homemade sauces call for blanching and peeling the tomatoes first, but it's not necessary for this sauce (nor for most sauces). As long as you use fresh, in season tomatoes, you can leave the skin on and save lots of time in the process.
What kind of tomatoes do you use for sauce?
Almost any kind of tomato works for homemade sauce. Look for juicy, super flavorful tomatoes for the best results. This sauce is cooked quick, so any tomato you'd enjoy eating raw in a salad or sandwich is an excellent option.
Should you seed tomatoes for sauce?
There is no need to seed tomatoes for sauce. The seeds are surrounded by the juiciest (and often most flavorful) part of the tomato. If you remove the seeds, your sauce won't have enough liquid and may be bland tasting.
Should you put sugar in spaghetti sauce?
There's no need to add sugar to this spaghetti sauce. You're going for fresh, bright flavors here, not a long-simmered, hearty sauce.
How do you thicken fresh tomato sauce?
If your tomato sauce is too thin, continue simmering it until you achieve the right consistency. Make sure to use a large, wide pan (like a deep skillet), which will help excess liquids evaporate faster. Cooking your sauce in a smaller pan will make the process take longer.
For an easy summer meal, you really don't need anything more than a big bowl of pasta!
If you want to round this dinner out, I'd recommend adding a salad. Try this Quick Chopped Salad or this Easy Kale Salad ... both would be delish.
You could also pair this pasta with a simple side dish, like Grilled or Roasted Vegetables. And Garlic Bread would be super tasty, too.
Looking for more pasta ideas? Then, you'll love these recipes, too:
- Pesto Pasta
- Greek Pasta Salad
- Lemon Ricotta Pasta
- Alfredo Sauce
- Marinara Sauce
- Pasta Primavera
- Baked Feta Pasta
Fresh Tomato Sauce
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ½ medium onion, diced small
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 medium tomatoes, diced (4 cups)
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh basil
- 1 pound spaghetti
- kosher salt
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add onion to skillet and season with a little salt. Cook until onion starts turning golden brown, about 7 minutes.
- Stir in garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until it becomes fragrant (about 30 seconds).
- Mix in tomatoes. Simmer until tomatoes break down and sauce thickens, about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Season sauce to taste with salt. Stir in fresh basil.
- While the sauce is simmering, cook pasta in a large pot of well-salted water until al dente. Remove ½ cup of pasta water and set aside. Drain pasta.
- Add pasta to sauce. Toss, adding just enough of the reserved pasta water to help the sauce coat the pasta evenly.
- Serve pasta immediately, topped with additional basil and grated Parmesan, if desired. Enjoy!