Homemade Marinara

This marinara sauce is so simple and once you’re tried it you will never go back to store-bought sauce. It has a rich, fresh tomato flavor without the additives!

Peach Cobbler

There’s nothing as easy as buying store-bought marinara sauce. The grocery store shelves are packed with viable options! But, making your own is just as easy and you won’t have the added sugars or additives.

Introducing my go-to homemade marinara sauce. It’s easy to make and take only 10 pantry ingredients and 30 minutes. I always have a jar on hand and my family gobbles it up faster than I can make it!

This marinara is straightforward and easy to make, so it’s perfect for busy weeknights. You don’t even have to chop the onion and garlic. Oh yeah, that’s right—just open a can of crushed tomatoes, halve an onion and peel some garlic. You’re all set to go!

This sauce gives up a lovely, authentic Italian flavor after a 30-minute simmer. I tried to take shortcuts to make it even faster, but no amount of tomato paste, spices, salt, or sugar will make up for the lost time.

A vegan food journal with fresh, delicious recipes.

Hello, I'm Denise.

I love to eat, garden, travel, and do yin yoga! I make plant-based recipes and photograph them from my 1920’s, remodeled apartment in Rhode Island. I've always loved fresh basil. Put some fresh basil leaves on a piece of cardboard, drizzle on a little olive oil and sea salt, and I'd be tempted to eat it! ❤️

Peach Cobbler

The base is canned, crushed tomatoes in their juices, simmered with sautéed shallots and garlic for depth of flavor. I add red peppers to heat it up just a bit and dried or fresh oregano for a hint of Italy. Balsamic vinegar adds some tang and salt, pepper and sugar make all the other ingredients pop.

When I’m in a pinch I often whip up his marinara sauce on a weeknight. When I’m in a planning mode, I’ll make it in advance. Just store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week (mine never lasts that long) or freeze it for up to a couple of months. I keep some stashed for stuffed shells, cherry tomato pasta when the craving strikes me.

Homemade Marinara Sauce Ingredients

So simple to make with only a handful of pantry ingredients.

      • Canned, crushed tomatoes – Canned, crushed tomatoes are the base of this homemade marinara sauce. Crushed tomatoes have a texture between tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. They’re perfect as a primary ingredient in your homemade spaghetti and pasta sauces.
      • Shallots – The flavor of shallots is mild and sweet with just a hint of garlic flavor
      • Garlic – Garlic adds depth and a spicy, almost nutty flavor
      • Olive oil. Softens the shallots and adds flavor.
      • Balsamic vinegar – Adds a hint of tangy goodness.
      • Salt and pepper – Makes all the other ingredients pop
      • Sugar- Helps balance the acidic crushed tomatoes
      • Dried oregano – Adds an Italian flair
      • Pepper flakes -Brings just a little heat to keep things interesting

Almond Milk

How to Make Homemade Marinara Sauce

Making this marinara sauce recipe is simple! Here’s what you need to do.

        • First, sauté the shallot and garlic in a saucepan with olive oil, salt, and pepper until they become soft and translucent.
        • Then, simmer the sauce. Add 28 ounces of crushed tomatoes and their juices, balsamic vinegar, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, and a dash of cane sugar. Cover the sauce and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, until thickened.

    How to Use Marinara Sauce

    You might already have many uses for this homemade marinara sauce. But, here are a couple of my own.

      • Use with stuffed shells – Use this marinara as the sauced for your stuffed shells. It’s the perfect homemade combination with vegan ricotta. It’s wonderful to make as many of your own ingredients as possible.
      • As a dipping sauce – My family loves the marinara for dipping! For example, make my roasted cauliflower and dip it into this zesty marinara. The combination is fantastic.
      • Any pasta dish – When I’m in a time crunch I simple make up some pasta and pour over the homemade marinara. I add some vegan mozzarella and within minutes I have a wonderful homemade meal.

    What are you favorite ways to use homemade marinara sauce? Let me know in the comments!

    Homemade Marinara

    Homemade Marinara

    Denise Keniston - Basil Lover
    This marinara sauce is so simple and once you’ve tried it you will never go back to store-bought sauce. It has a rich, fresh tomato flavor without the the additives!
    5 from 1 vote
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 30 minutes
    Total Time 40 minutes


    • 1 (28 oz) canned, crushed tomatoes
    • 1 lg garlic cloves, minced
    • extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1/3 cup chopped shallots
    • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
    • 1/4 tsp organic sugar
    • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
    • 1/2 tsp sea salt
    • ground black pepper, to taste
    • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes


    • Heat the olive oil in a medium pot over low heat. Add the shallot, garlic, salt, and a few grinds of black pepper and cook for 3 minutes, stirring often.
    • Add the tomatoes and juices, balsamic vinegar, cane sugar, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cover and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste.
    Keyword marinara
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


    Pin It on Pinterest

    Share This