The World’s Best Pasta Sauce

So, I’m going to open this post with a word that has, recently, become a dirty word in our house.


Tomaotes, tomato, Italian, Red Tomato, Roma tomato

Beautiful red tomatoes.

Yup, recently “tomatoes” has been a bad word, mostly because of the numbers of them that we’ve been getting both from our CSA at Gorman Farm and the number that our brother-in-law is growing in his garden. Last week, we got 15 tomatoes of various types from our CSA, and we had already gotten 4 beefsteak and 9 Romas from our bro-in-law.

Now, the blonde’s sister, the one who hosted the True Blood party, and her husband have a decent sized garden in their yard. OK, their garden is a tad on the big side, and they aren’t vegan or vegetarian, they just grow a crap-load of veggies. Which makes our lives easy, generally. Except for the aforementioned tomatoes.

So what do you do when you have tomatoes coming out of your ears? Well, that’s easy, you make salsa and pasta sauce. So this week, I made two full batches of pasta sauce, and one jar of salsa. Then on Friday, we got 14 more tomatoes: 9 Romas, and 5 reds. Oh well. . .

Tomatoes, Roma Tomatoes, red tomaotes, beefsteak tomaotes, pasta sauce

It’s a good thing pasta sauce freezes well. . .

In celebration of these prolific love-apples, I’m going to do something completely unimaginable.

I’m going to post my mom’s pasta sauce recipe.

See, my mother makes, hands-down, the best pasta sauce in the world. She gave me the recipe a while ago, and while I battled with it, I never managed to make it right. Now that I’m vegan, use of Parmesan cheese is no longer an option, and, to be honest, my mother’s recipe called for about 1 cup of olive oil. I try to cut that down by a bunch.  I also didn’t worry about the ever-present meatballs or braciole that go in the sauce. If you are a person that must have “meat” in your pasta, I’ll add that note at the end.

Garlic, cloves, fresh garlic, Italian Green onion, garlic, scallion Basil, fresh basil, spices, italian

Mom’s Pasta Sauce. . . Best Ever

Tomatoes (I used 10 Romas, 1 beefsteak, and 7 red tomatoes, but you really want to fill your blender, and then add about another 25%)

4-6 cloves fresh garlic, roughly chopped

1 green onion, roughly chopped

Fresh basil, about 3 Tbsp, roughly chopped

1/8 c. tomato paste

2 tsp. Dried parsley

2 tsp. thyme

3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast

3-4 grinds black pepper

salt to taste


Quarter and seed the tomatoes, and drop them into the blender. I used my Vitamix at 7.

Blend the tomatoes until they are smooth, but not super liquid-y. Add the tomatoes until they are all run through the blender.  Add the tomato paste, and blend to mix.

Drop in about 1/2 the basil, and pulse to mix into the tomato puree. You want the basil chopped and mixed, not pureed, so be gentle. I ran the Vitamix at 6 to suck them down, and then turned it down to 2 right away, and ran it for about 30 seconds.

Vitamix, Vita-mix, tomaotes, pasta sauce, basil, tomato, recipe,

Your basil chunks should look like this in the puree.

chopped, minced, chopped garlic, chopped onion, chopped basil, minced garlic, minced onion, mise en place, Italian, Pasta sauce

Pre-chopped ingredients make life a million times easier.

Next, add 1Tbsp olive oil to a large pot, and add the green onion. Heat on medium, and stir occasionally with a wooden spoon. (Somehow, I believe that using a wooden spoon makes a difference. If possible, brandish it as if it were a weapon at your kids for being loud. I think my and my brother’s fear of that spoon helped season the sauce.  Maybe I’m just nuts. . .)

Green onion, onion, scallion, Olive oil

Sweat your onion gently for about 3 minutes.

Once the onion is fragrant and starting to turn clear, add the garlic, and cook for about 3 more minutes.  You don’t want to garlic to turn golden, just to become fragrant. If it starts to turn color, it may be overdone.  Watch it carefully.

Onion, green onion, scallion, garlic, garlic clove, minced garlic, chopped garlic, wooden spoon, olive oil

Keep the garlic from browning so it can’t burn.

**If you are adding meatballs, this is where you add them. You’ll want to use whole garlic cloves instead of chopped, and remove them before adding the meatballs. Cook the meatballs in the oil, and then remove them to drain on a paper-towel. Add more oil if you need to to keep the meatballs from burning. Once all your meatballs are done, then add the chopped garlic, as before, get it golden, and proceed.**

Once all of that is done, dump in the tomato and basil puree, and give a few quick stirs, again with the wooden spoon. Add the dry spices, and stir them in. Get your sauce to a boil stirring occasionally, and then turn down to med-low or low heat. Allow it to simmer for at least three hours, more if you want a much thicker sauce.

Pasta sauce, tomaot sauce, gracy, sunday sauce, basil, tomato, parsley, thyme, garlic, onion, nutritional yeast, Italian food, pasta, wooden spoon, salt, balck pepper

The sauce as spices are being mixed in.

**Also, if you don’t have tomato paste, this is where you can make up for it. Keep it at a low boil for up to 30 minutes, and then turn it down to a simmer. With the lid off, stirring occasionally, just simmer until you are close to the thickness you want.**

As you get closer to the end of your cooking time, taste for salt and nutritional yeast. I usually need to add an additional tablespoon of nutritional yeast before finishing, and sometimes another pinch or two of salt.  I haven’t made this with vegan cheese-and-eggplant-braciole, but I’m considering it, as we have eggplant from our CSA. But, have fun with what you add to this. It is a great base sauce. Add ground TVP or seitan and make it a “meat” sauce. Or add a bunch of lightly sauteed mushrooms and make it a mushroom-Bolognese if you’d like.

What do you do with your pasta sauce? Anything special, or is marinara your favorite?

~ by VegansHusband on September 9, 2012.

35 Responses to “The World’s Best Pasta Sauce”

  1. This looks great! I’m definitely going to make this next time we have a pasta night!
    PS: Wooden spoons kick ass lol!

  2. I can’t wait to try your recipe! I use nutritional yeast in my sauce as well.

    • Right? Without using nutritional yeast, where can you get the cheesy-ness that Parmesan cheese carries? I add salt when i add the n. yeast to help it mimic the Parm.

  3. Love the sound of this! The only but is does it really need to cook for three hours?!

    • In all reality, the longer it cooks, the more enriched it becomes. The flavors blend, and lots of the deliciousness comes from that melding of flavors. If you don’t have three hours, then simmer it for less time, and see how it goes.

      My mother will leave it on for anywhere from 2.5-5 hours, depending on when dinner is, and/or what she is adding to it. I try to keep it on the stove for at least 3 hours.

  4. Looks delish! I might event roast the tomatoes to give it a rustic touch!

  5. Dude, you totally win on this one, I make my own pasta sauce, but use a can of crushed tomatoes. I’ve got a tomato garden next door that is bursting with little orange sun gold tomatoes, wonder how they’d do in this sauce. Need to give it a go!

    • Last year I made sauce like this, but I used yellow Romas and like 2 bulbs of roasted garlic. It was uber-delicious, but we were vampire-proof for like 2 days afterwards.

      Hit up those sun golds, I bet they’ll make delish sauce.

      • Hey, we’re addicted to garlic around here. I’m pretty sure vampires won’t come within a 12 mile radius of our house. Especially if sun gold’s get involved, too many rays of goodness and sunshine coming out of those babies!

        I don’t watch TV do I don’t watch the vampire shows, but I admit I read the twilight series (seriously embarrassing for me to admit) I’m a Jane Austen and a classic snob.

      • I understand. I try to split my time, but I read enough terrible writing when I grade papers, so I usually stick to my reading in the Summer.

  6. This is awesome! We’ve been looking for a recipe… also for pizza sauce but this might work for that too. Thank-you for sharing.

    • I think for pizza sauce, you’ll just want to thicken it a little bit more. Try taking some out and simmering it separately for a bit longer, or use a slotted spoon and scoop what you can that way before it all runs through.

      Let me know how it goes.

  7. This sounds amazing! We may have to try it next weekend!

  8. I am making this tomorrow for Monday’s dinner. We are going to have it on spaghetti squash. And then Jason is going to use it for eggplant parm later in the week. What kind of container do you freeze it in?

    • I freeze it in a large one! Any thing big enough to hold it should be fine. My mom usually makes about 2 or 3 times this , and freezes it in a huge juice pitcher. It holds a gallon. I use Tupperware, because I’m not quite as crazy as she.

  9. Lol, well, I am exited to try it and have leftovers to freeze. Jason made a pretty good vegan eggplant dish tonight. He was saying he may send you the recipe.

  10. […] make pasta sauce. I make hummus. I make pretty much everything that we want to eat. Be patient, I’ll make […]

  11. […] c Pasta sauce (like my mom’s recipe.  Just sayin’. . […]

  12. […] and we were cleaning out the fridge this particular day. I started simply and got some of my favorite pasta sauce and a bag of rice pasta. Brent is in charge of making pasta so I was […]

  13. Came here from Turning Veganese! Gotta try this. Thanks for the great recipe!

  14. […] c Pasta sauce (like my mom’s recipe. Just sayin’. . […]

  15. Thank you Veganshusband! I see that I’m late to this party, but it’s only recently that I’ve acquired my Vitamix and the will to turn internet fantasy into kitchen reality. You really thought of everything, sweat the onion first, boil longer to thicken. All much appreciated as I just made my first homemade pasta sauce!

    • That’s great! I hope you had it on a big pile of pasta, so let me know how it was!

      • Oh Veganshusband….It turned out like someone with little cooking experience took a whole lotta culinary liberties. Throw in a whole zucchini, no nutritional yeast, fresh herbs where dried were called for, and hey all that garlic looks scary so I’ll use less. Had to start somewhere though, and I thank you for helpin’ me! I will be giving it another go and following that recipe MUCH CLOSER!

      • Hey, the most important thing is that you liked it. You keep fighting with it until you find a way that you like it, and then let me know what you did to change it. And thanks in advance!

  16. Reblogged this on Incredible-Edible-Veggies.

  17. […] 1 medium eggplant 1/2 cup world’s best pasta sauce 1/4 cup Daiya mozzarella 1/8 cup breadcrumbs Vegan parmesean Salt Pepper Italian spices (basil, […]

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