Quick and easy Homemade Marinara sauce doesn’t get any better! With just a handful of ingredients that are easy to keep on hand you’ll have the best marinara sauce to serve over a pile of spaghetti in less than 30 minutes. This easy dinner recipe is soon to be requested over and over again by your family!
Marinara sauce is a staple for so many different recipes. Whether you’re making a dinner of air fryer chicken parm, or an appetizer of fried ravioli, having the right sauce is important! Homemade marinara sauce is my secret to making all of these delicious Italian recipes taste the best they can be.
This quick recipe uses simple ingredients, so you can have fresh sauce without all the preservatives and additives. It’s also really fun to adapt and change this recipe to make it your own. You can create your own “secret family recipe” and hold the 1st place spot for the best marinara sauce! Let this classic marinara sauce recipe be your starting point, and then get adventurous!
Why You’ll Love Homemade Marinara Sauce
- This sauce has a more fresh and bold flavor than the stuff you but in the store. It will revolutionize the recipes you have that call for marinara!
- Make a batch of classic marinara sauce in just under a half hour. The perfect last minute appetizer addition, and it won’t add much time onto your easy dinner recipe either!
- Marinara sauce is a great make ahead recipe. It stores well and can be used later in recipes you have planned out for your week.
Ingredients for Homemade Marinara Sauce
- Garlic cloves – Mince your own fresh garlic for the most prominent flavor. You can also buy a jar of minced garlic at the grocery store.
- Crushed tomatoes – You’ll need a large can of crushed tomatoes, 28 oz. So either buy enough small cans or find a really large can of tomatoes!
- Extra virgin olive oil – I do not recommend swapping olive oil for something else. The flavor of olive oil is really distinct and will make the best marinara sauce.
- Tomato paste – A small can of tomato paste is all you need for this recipe. Tomato paste has a strong flavor, so make sure you’re using the correct amount.
- Yellow onion – Yellow onion and white onion will both work for marinara sauce.
- Fresh parsley – Use fresh parsley instead of dried. It will blend much better with all of the other ingredients.
- Salt and pepper – I’ve figured out the perfect measurements for salt and pepper to cut the bitterness of tomato paste and enhance the sweetness of crushed tomatoes.
- Dried oregano – If you decide to use fresh oregano, you may need to adjust the amount you use since fresh has a more powerful flavor.
How to Make Easy Marinara Sauce
- Add two tablespoons olive oil to a medium saucepan, and place it over medium heat on the stove top.
- Once the oil is hot, add the diced onion to the pan. After about 5 minutes, the onion should be soft and golden. Add minced garlic to the saucepan and stir until fragrant.
- Stir in crushed tomatoes, oregano, salt and pepper. Then, bring the mixture to a boil.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat and allow to simmer partially covered for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes has passed, stir in the fresh parsley and turn off the heat.
- Serve over warm pasta, with an appetizer like mozzarella sticks, or use in a recipe like baked ravioli.
What to serve with Homemade Marinara Sauce
This is the best marinara sauce to serve over a bed of pasta. However, it can go with so many other things too!
Make a batch of marinara and then use it in recipes like crock pot meatballs, baked rigatoni, and sour cream noodle bake. It can also be used a dipping sauce for things like Stromboli and pizza pinwheels.
Air fryer pizza rolls and air fried ravioli are easy appetizers that are delicious when dipped in marinara. And you can eat it with crunchy garlic bread while you wait on your homemade pizza to bake too!
How to Store Leftover Homemade Marinara Sauce
FRIDGE: Place a fresh batch of classic marinara sauce, or your leftovers, into an airtight container. I like to use Mason jars! Store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Give the sauce a good shake before using it.
FREEZER: Leftover sauce can be frozen in an airtight container. If you need to save space, store sauce in freezer safe bags and lay flat in the freezer. Freeze for up to 4 months. Allow to thaw before using.
What’s the difference between marinara sauce and spaghetti sauce?
Although the two are very similar, there are some differences between marinara sauce and spaghetti sauce.
Most recipes for classic marinara sauce have minimal ingredients. Whereas, a list of ingredients for spaghetti sauce could be a bit longer. Spaghetti sauce typically has meat in it and is often a more thin consistency. It will also typically have chunks of tomato, onion, meat and sometimes veggies.
Marinara tends to be a bit more thick consistency and is more smooth. However, since they are really similar the two can often be substituted for one another in recipes that call for one of these sauces.
- Have some fresh tomatoes that you need to use up? Make your own crushed tomatoes or dice up some fresh tomatoes and add them to this tasty recipe!
- Give this marinara sauce some kick with red pepper flakes or powdered red pepper.
- Serve marinara sauce piping hot for the best flavor and results. Sauce tends to cool quickly, so serving at hot temperature will help in stay perfectly delicious through every single bite.
Now that you have the best marinara sauce recipe, you are set for all things Italian! Pasta night is going to be so tasty now!
More Italian Recipes You’ll Love
- Baked Ziti is such a great comfort food meal! It’s perfect for meal prep too, since it freezes well.
- Italian soups are a game-changer, and this Instant Pot Lasagna Soup is proof!
- These Stuffed Zucchini Boats are the perfect healthy and hearty meal to serve for dinner.
- Make this Italian Chicken Crock Pot Recipe when you need a set and forget meal.
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ medium yellow onion finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves finely minced
- 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
- 6 ounces tomato paste (1 can)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon fresh parsley finely minced, plus more to garnish
- Place a medium saucepan over medium heat and add 2 Tablespoons olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add ½ cup chopped onion, stirring often until soft and golden (about 5 min). Add minced garlic and stir for 1 min, or until fragrant.
- Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to a light boil then reduce heat and simmer partially covered for 15 minutes.
- Finally, stir in fresh parsley then turn off the heat. Serve warm over pasta.