Having a stash of homemade tomato sauce on hand proves to be extremely useful in the fall and winter months. We also like to can a little extra to give away to friends and family at the holidays.
After years of canning and trying various recipes, this tomato sauce recipe is by far my favorite! There are thousands of tomato sauce recipe variations out there, but this recipe is easy, healthy, and delicious. Three requirements of mine when it comes to canning! We use this amazing sauce for pizza, pasta, soup, and everything in between. It is extremely versatile.
I like this particular sauce because it has a chunkier texture and it is full of healthy veggies. (It’s a really good way to “sneak” veggies into kids, if you know what I’m saying.) Another reason I love it is because it doesn’t require you to peel your tomatoes, saving you oodles of time. The skins get cooked up in the sauce and you don’t even notice! If you want to peel your tomatoes first, by all means, go ahead. But it’s not required and the sauce comes out delicious either way. Feel free to adapt the recipe to your
Basic Tomato Sauce
1 medium onion, chopped fine
3 cloves garlic, minced (You can use more if you like a stronger taste)
1 green pepper, chopped fine
2-3 small to medium sized carrots, shredded
1/4 cup fresh parsley
2 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped (or 2 tsp. dried)
1 tbsp. fresh oregano (or 1 tsp. dried)
1 tbsp. fresh thyme (or 1 tsp. dried)
7-8 cups chopped roma tomatoes (or other tomato variety)
salt and pepper to taste
*lemon juice or vinegar for canning (see recipe below)
Sauté onion, garlic, and pepper in a few tablespoons of water on low heat just until tender. IMPORTANT NOTE: You can use 2 tbsp. of oil to sauté, but many canners do not like to use oil or butter in any canning recipe for safety reasons. If you plan on freezing this sauce and not canning it, the oil will be fine. Use your own judgement with this decision. I find water works very well but you have to keep it on lower heat to avoid burning the onions.
Add the remaining ingredients (except the lemon juice and vinegar) to the pan. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
At this point, you can freeze the sauce if you do not wish to can it.
For canning the sauce: Ladle sauce into hot, sterilized, and prepared jars. Quarts work well if you double or triple this recipe. Pints work best for the recipe as written. Fill jars leaving 1/2 inch of headspace at the top. Add in 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar per pint to assure acidity. Then, seal with sterilized lids. Process full jars in a boiling water bath for 35 minutes.