One Pan Fresh Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce

While picking up a store-bought is the easier route when it comes to pasta sauce, still making a homemade pasta sauce is the best option if you have the time to do it. Making homemade pasta sauce may not be as easy as grabbing a bottle of sauce from the grocery, but it is 100% better and budget friendly too. Bonus reason, you use only fresh tomato and herbs and there is no added preservatives in it. Isn’t that reason enough to make out own pasta sauce? As long as you have tomato on hand, all the other ingredients can be adjusted to what you have, like the spices and herbs.

Tomato is one vegetable that is available all year round, so making a homemade tomato based pasta sauce made this possible anytime of the year. Although Summer produces the best tomato, the rest of the year are as good. It could get a little more expensive but nonetheless, they are suitable and good for making homemade pasta sauce. Tomato based pasta sauce for me is a basic pasta sauce that one should know how to make. Once you have one good for keeps recipe, you can make several variations from it.

Variations:

This pasta sauce is thick and it taste so fresh, so good! I always like bits and pieces of chunky tomato in my pasta as they gave a really nice texture to the sauce. This pasta sauce is very flexible that it can easily adjust to whatever pasta sauce I am craving for. So, what kind of pasta sauce do you like. Here are my favorite variations that I used this recipe for.

  • Are you a meat lover? Then just go ahead and add some shredded cooked chicken, or cooked minced meat or diced cold cuts. Better yet, throw in some meatballs for a very filling pasta meat sauce. Add cooked meat halfway in the cooking time.
  • Are you a cheese lover? Well, whatever cheese you like, go ahead and sprinkle spoonful (or more) of cheese in the pasta sauce and watch how it makes the pasta sauce thick, creamy and cheesy. Add 1/4 cup shredded cheese once the pasta is cooked, then stir until the cheese is melted and evenly distributed in the sauce.
  • Are you a vegetable lover? Nothings wrong with adding some fresh spinach, diced mushrooms, zucchini or eggplant in the sauce. Be creative, explore and add vegetables of your choice. Adjust amount of vegetables depending on how many kind of vegetable you are adding.
    • Spinach: Add 1/2 cup washed spinach in the last 5 minutes of cooking. Cover the pan and cook until the Spinach is wilted.
    • Mushroom: Add 1/2 cup sliced white or brown mushrooms, wash and add in the sauce in the last 30 minutes of cooking.
      • Alternatively, for more flavor saute mushroom and onion until browned then add to the pasta sauce. Season the mushroom with salt, pepper and a little bit of sugar to help the onion caramelized.
    • Zucchini, Eggplant, Bell Pepper: Add 1/2 cup diced vegetables in the lasy 30 minutes of cooking or even earlier if you like the vegetables pretty much soft.  
  • Do you like it smooth and creamy? Turn the sauce into a Creamy Rosé Sauce by using a blender to puree the mixture and adding 1/4 cup of full fat cream. Return to the pan and simmer for another 5 minutes. Easy breezy and you have a smooth and creamy Rosé Sauce pasta sauce.
  • Are you a seafood lover?Marinate 1/4 cup- 1/2 cup mixed seafood or shrimp  in 2 tbsp lemon juice, salt and pepper. Saute with 2 cloves garlic and 1/2 small onion until cook through. This can be added once the pasta sauce is cooked.

Now, don’t you think this is the BEST pasta sauce ever? One pan, easy and simple with multiple variations. It cannot get any better than that. Give it a try and let me know which variation you like best.

Ingredients:

  • 6 Ripe Vine Tomato – cut into quarter
  • 1 Small Yellow Onion – cut small pieces
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 1/3 Olive Oil
  • 1/3 cup Fresh Basil 
  • 2 1/2 tsp Salt ( I used fine salt) – adjust as needed
  • 1/4 tsp Black Pepper – adjust as needed
  • 1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning or a combination of Basil, Oregano, Rosemary, Thyme will work too
  • 2 tsp granulated White Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Paprika
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  •  2 tbsp Tomato Paste

Instructions:

  1. Puree the tomato, garlic and onion in a blender or food processor. Transfer in a pan and simmer for 1 hour in medium heat. Add chopped basil, olive oil, salt, black pepper, Italian Seasoning, sugar, paprika and cayenne pepper. Continue cooking for another 30 minutes. Add tomato paste, then taste and adjust seasoning as desired.

That’s all you need to do! Now, grab your favorite pasta and put this wonderful pasta sauce to use.

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Categories: Cooking, Dips & Sauce, Recipe

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