Homemade Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce

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I love when my house smells like an Italian kitchen.

Onion. Garlic. Basil. Mmmmmm….

This is one of those recipes that is going to make your house smell fabulous and make everyone hungry.

I also love that this sauce can be canned!

So load up on those fresh, ripe summer tomatoes and go to town canning, so that you have fresh, homemade pasta sauce ready to enjoy year-round!

Homemade Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce Directions:

First, you want to take firm, ripe tomatoes and remove the skins. I find it’s easiest to score an X on the bottom, but you can skip this part.

Prepare a bowl of ice water. Then, bring a pot of water to a boil. Drop the tomatoes in a few at a time and let them boil for 30 seconds (you should see the peel start to come off).

After the 30 seconds has passed, use tongs to move the tomatoes to the ice bath. This will make it super easy to remove the peels and handle the tomatoes.

Remove the peels and set aside in a bowl.

Dump the water out of the pot and put it back on the stove. Turn the heat to medium-low and add the butter.

While the butter is melting, chop up the red onion and add it to the pot.

To get the most out of your garlic, make sure you crush it with your knife before mincing it, and let it sit for at least 10 minutes. This allows it to build up cancer fighting chemicals.

While the garlic is resting, core the tomatoes to remove the hard white part and slice into halves (don’t add to that pot yet!).

After the garlic has sat for 10 minutes, add it to the onion to sauté for 5 minutes.

Then, chop up your basil and add it to the pot.

Now add the tomatoes, basil, oregano, and salt to the pot.

Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to a simmer.

Simmer for 1 hour on low heat, stirring every 15 minutes, and then use a potato masher to break apart any large tomato chunks.

Cook for another hour, or until the sauce has thickened to your desired thickness.

Add meat if desired and serve hot over zoodles or spaghetti squash.


Homemade Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce

Difficulty Level: Medium

Servings: 8


  • 3 pounds of tomatoes OR 4, 16-ounce cans of diced tomatoes (skip steps 1-6 and step 8)
  • 4 Tablespoons of butter or avocado oil (for dairy free)
  • 1 small red onion, chopped OR ½ teaspoon of onion powder
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced OR ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • ½ teaspoon of ground oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Fill a large pot half full of water and bring to a boil.
  2. In the meantime, fill a large bowl with ice water.
  3. Rinse the tomatoes with water and use a knife to cut an X on the bottom of each tomato.
  4. Once the water is boiling, add the tomatoes to the pot a few at the time for 30 seconds, or until it looks like the skin is starting to loosen, and then plunge into the cold water.
  5. After about a minute of being in the ice water, pull the tomato skin off of the tomato and set aside on a plate.
  6. Once the skin is removed from all of the tomatoes, pour out the boiling water and put the pot back on the stove.
  7. Melt the butter in the large pot and then add the onion and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes or until very fragrant.
  8. While the garlic and onions are cooking, finish preparing the tomatoes by cutting out the hard stem area and cutting the tomatoes in half.
  9. Add the tomatoes, basil, oregano, and salt to the onion and garlic.
  10. Simmer for 1 hour on low heat, stirring every 15 minutes, and then use a potato masher to break apart any large tomato chunks.
  11. Cook for 30 minutes or until the sauce has thickened.
  12. Serve hot over zoodles or spaghetti squash.


Store in the fridge and consume within 2 weeks. This can also be frozen, but it will change the texture to be more mealy or gritty. This is a great recipe for canning if you have a water bath or pressure cooker.

If you are looking for other inspiration on how to use this sauce, try using it in Tomato Basil Egg Casserole!

pie server holding slice of tomato basil egg casserole

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