red sauce

All tomato sauces were not created equal. When it comes to garnishing your favorite dishes with a helping of a red sauce, the destination dictates the best course of action. Tomato sauce shouldn’t be the same if it’s intended to top pizza, be baked into pasta casseroles or serving quick-and-easy atop your favorite noodles. Discover the best tomato sauce recipe for each of your favorite uses.

Pizza

If you’re looking to make a tomato sauce to go atop your favorite homemade pizza recipe, the secret is to go for something thick, smooth and full of flavor. You don’t need much sauce to top your favorite pie, particularly if you don’t want the crust getting soggy. Try whipping up this delicious sauce with an immersion blender handy, and you’ll be in pizza heaven.

Makes enough for 2 large pizzas

Ingredients

1 small onion
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp. olive oil
salt, to taste
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 cup tomato paste
1 small can whole tomatoes
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. dried or 1 Tbsp. fresh basil

Directions

Finely dice the onion and mince the garlic. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium-low heat, then add the onion and salt to taste. Cook the onion until translucent, then add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the tomato paste and fry for 30 seconds. Add the juice from the canned tomatoes and stir until achieving an even paste. Add the whole tomatoes, crushing them with your hands as you add them.

Cook the sauce, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Add the oregano and basil and blend with an immersion blender until smooth.

Baked Pasta

When it comes to baked pasta, you need a sauce with a bit of extra liquid so that the casserole doesn’t dry out. But this by no means indicates that your sauce should be watery! Instead, rely on a secret ingredient to keep your casseroles both moist and flavorful.

Makes enough for 1 lasagna-sized baking dish of pasta

Ingredients

1 small onion
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp. olive oil
salt, to taste
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 large can whole tomatoes
1 1/2 cups tomato juice
1 tsp. dried or 1 Tbsp. fresh basil

Directions

Finely dice the onion and mince the garlic. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium-low heat, then add the onion and salt to taste. Cook the onion until translucent, then add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the tomato paste and fry for 30 seconds. Add the juice from the canned tomatoes and stir until achieving an even paste. Add the whole tomatoes, crushing them with your hands as you add them. Add the tomato juice.

Cook the sauce, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Add the basil. Toss with al dente pasta and any other ingredients, like meat in this baked pasta in spaghetti sauce recipe, or cheese when it comes to this baked pasta with tomato sauce recipe, and bake 15-2o minutes, until bubbly.

Quick and Easy

If you’re looking for an easy-to-make sauce that’s perfect with cooked pasta, atop meatball sliders, or simply with bread for dipping we’ve got the perfect sauce for you. It’s ready to eat in under 15 minutes, about as long as it takes to make the pasta.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 small onion
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp. olive oil
salt, to taste
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
3 cups store bought or homemade tomato coulis
1 tsp. dried or 1 Tbsp. fresh basil

Directions

Finely dice the onion and mince the garlic. Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium-low heat, then add the onion and salt to taste. Cook the onion until translucent, then add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the tomato paste and fry for 30 seconds. Add the tomato coulis. Stir to combine and simmer until warmed through. Add the basil and serve.

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Image: kevandy