Basic Spicy Tomato Sauce Recipe -
Basic Spicy Tomato Sauce Recipe
  • READY IN 20 mins

Basic Spicy Tomato Sauce

Recipe by  

"This sauce can be used for spaghetti, ravioli, chicken Parmesan, or anything Italian! It's very quick and very easy! Anything from seasoning to spices can be adjusted without compromising the basic flavor of the sauce. Sometimes we add bell peppers or tomatoes with green chiles. Add anything you like."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 6 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    10 mins
  • COOK

    10 mins

    20 mins


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onion in the oil until translucent. Add the garlic and cook and stir another 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, red pepper flakes, and Italian seasoning. Season with salt. Cook until completely heated, another 2 to 3 minutes.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Aug 10, 2008

This was my first attempt at homemade marinara. I used a 10oz. can crushed tomatoes and 1 can rotel, I pureed the rotel. I did tweak the seasonings a bit! My bf thought it was too runny so I will add tomato paste next time.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Jul 13, 2011

Too acidic. Add sugar to balance.

May 18, 2009

I'm giving this five stars although at first I thought that it was too spicy. I scaled the recipe to accommodate a huge can of crushed tomatoes that I needed to use up (hence my search for a tomato sauce recipe). Although I doubled the recipe and still added extra tomatoes (64 ounces instead of a mere 56) it had a lot of bite. Yet, I can't stop eating it, and my husband, who doesn't crave spicy foods, likes it too, and says it is not too spicy. This is a good sauce in which to add those things that you want to get rid of. I added a rind from a wedge of romano cheese, and let it simmer quite a while. And, as good as it is, I had some heavy cream that needed to be used up, so I added 7 ounces of heavy cream to a double recipe of this sauce. Very good, and I imagine it will be even better with pasta!

Feb 03, 2011

So GOOD! Make more, and freeze it!!

Nov 04, 2012

Wow, great basic recipe, loved this! I make hot italian sausages in the slow cooker, usually just dump a jar of prepared sauce for a quick fix, but was out of sauce. I did have a can of crushed tomatoes, and found this recipe. So glad I did. I did do some doctoring, in addition to the recipe ingredients I added some fine chopped carrot, about 1/2 cup red wine, and a packet of beef boulion in place of salt. I also added some sugar, about two tablespoons, to cut the acidity and sweeten a bit. Delicious. Good-bye jarred sauce!

Apr 25, 2011

I added a pinch of sugar, 1 tbsp of tomato paste (for thickness) and a tiny bit of vegetable bullion cube. delicious and very easy to make!

Sep 09, 2014

Good as far as it goes. If you can get away with it, use tomato sauce and simmer it longer, the longer the better, adding water if you need to. As others have said, a bit of tomato paste will thicken the sauce, but make it even more acidic and bitter. So . . . Add a pinch of baking soda. IMO, sugar is not a good idea because it doesn't solve the acidity. It only masks it (and does so badly). Instead, do what my sainted grandmother used to do. Add a pinch of baking soda just as the sauce begins to simmer and stir the foam back in. Bases counteract acids. Cook awhile and add a little more baking soda if necessary. (Taste first.) That step will allow the natural sweetness of the tomato to assert itself. Don't overdo the baking soda, though. It will make the sauce unacceptably salty. Oh, and leave out the salt if you use bs.

Feb 04, 2015

This sauce is fabulous! I did make a few of my own tweaks to it after making it a few times. I have kids & they, especially my youngest, don't like the hotness. So I omit the crushed red pepper flakes & for those of us that do like it spicy we sprinkle it on top of our separate dishes. I also added meat, sausage & meatballs. I brown the sausage first before letting them cook in the sauce. Because I triple the recipe I actually have to bake my meatballs in the oven due to not having a big enough pot. Because I added meat the sauce came out a tad watery so the next time I drained the juice from the diced tomatoes & that seemed to help. Overall an excellent sauce, great for my entire family. It has become a staple in our household & every I make homemade sauce this is the recipe. It also cooks well in the crockpot.


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  • Calories
  • 101 kcal
  • 5%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 13.6 g
  • 4%
  • Cholesterol
  • 0 mg
  • 0%
  • Fat
  • 5.1 g
  • 8%
  • Fiber
  • 3.5 g
  • 14%
  • Protein
  • 2.7 g
  • 5%
  • Sodium
  • 174 mg
  • 7%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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