Fresh Homemade Marinara Sauce

Fresh Homemade Marinara Sauce

For quite some time, one of my culinary goals has been to make my own homemade pasta and fresh homemade marinara sauce. The trouble is that most of the “homemade” recipes for marinara sauce call for canned tomatoes, which in my mind isn’t truly and authentically homemade. Luckily, I came across a great recipe for Homemade Tomato Sauce that I ended up using. It took time and patience to prep and make, most notably when peeling and seeding the tomatoes. But I think that the end result was worth it. It’s 100% homemade (no canned tomatoes), healthy, and delicious. And it’s not only another check off of my list of culinary goals, but is also another addition to my 50 in 15 Challenge.

One thing that I must admit is that my first go-round making this sauce ended up being a bit bland, most likely because I used the smaller amounts of onion, garlic, and herbs, as listed in the ingredients list. It wasn’t by any means bad, but did result in me needing to add in some flavor after-the-fact with additional dried herbs and garlic powder.

If you’re in the mood for some amazing marinara sauce and want to spend some quality time in the kitchen with a bunch of fresh tomatoes and herbs, you’ll definitely want to try this recipe.


  • 5 lb. tomatoes, peeled and seeded
  • 1/4 c. Olive oil
  • 2-3 large onions, diced
  • 6-8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 c. fresh basil leaves, minced
  • 1-2 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp. dried)
  • 1-2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-2 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1-2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 carrot (half grated, half whole)


  1. In a large stock pot over medium heat, add the olive oil, onions, garlic, and grated carrots. Cook for 6-8 minutes, or until onions are tender and translucent.
  2. Add tomatoes, basil, thyme, oregano, bay leaves, parsley, and salt.
  3. Simmer on low heat for 2-3 hours, or until cooked down and starting to darken. For the last 30 minutes of cooking, add the remaining half chunk of carrot to help absorb acidity.
  4. Once done cooking, remove the carrot chunk, bay leaves, and any stems of fresh herbs.
  5. For a smooth sauce, transfer the sauce to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and puree until smooth.


The main thing I noticed in preparing this recipe was that the color of my sauce was more orange than red, almost looking like a tomato cream sauce. I can’t say I’m 100% sure why that is — perhaps the type of tomatoes I used, the ratio of onion/garlic to tomatoes, or the amount of cook time. But color aside, it was still a pretty decent end result, and a recipe I’ll gladly make again, so long as I add a bit more herbs and garlic to enhance the overall flavor.

Bon Appétit!


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