Growing up, we rarely used jarred tomato sauce because we always made our own homemade spaghetti sauce. Because I was young, I never thought anything of it. But when I had pasta at a friend’s house and they used jarred sauce, I never liked it much. My dad was generally the one who always made our sauce; it was one of his favorite things to do on Sunday afternoons.
This homemade spaghetti sauce recipe was passed down from my Sicilian grandma. It has been used for generations, and you can’t mess it up! It is really easy and tastes SO much better than the store-bought sauce. I love that you can make this in a crock-pot, too (my favorite crockpot is this one!); no need to spend hours babysitting the stove making sure it doesn’t burn. In fact, it’s one of our favorite dump recipes.
If you plan to can this sauce, omit the Parmesan cheese and add that when you warm up the sauce before eating.
We often add ground beef or Italian sausage to it as well (the one pictured has ground beef in it). This just makes it that much better!
You can make this sauce with either canned crushed tomatoes or fresh tomatoes.
If using fresh tomatoes, you would need about 12-15 medium-sized tomatoes. There is definitely more work involved when using fresh tomatoes, but it is worth it! First, you will need to get the skins off. The easiest method for this is to score the skins with a sharp knife, and then boil them for about a minute and then place in cold water. It’s easiest if you do this in batches. Once the tomatoes have cooled, the skins should peel off relatively easily. Then chop them up, and blend in a food processor. You can control how chunky or smooth you want the sauce by how long you blend them for. Once this step is done, follow the rest of the recipe using the tomatoes you just prepared as the crushed tomatoes.
We hope you enjoy it!
Other Italian Recipes
If you love this homemade spaghetti sauce recipe, you will love some of our other Italian recipes:
In fact, you can find many of these recipes in our ALDI Meal Plans, where we teach you how to make 20 meals for under $160 in under 3 hours!
Have you grabbed my freezer meal plans, yet? I might be biased but I think they are pretty amazing! They have saved our dinner hour for years now. Check them out!
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